Genesis 5020

My Story for His Glory

With You May 29, 2015

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles — Melissa Finnegan @ 2:07 pm
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By Rob Bye

By Rob Bye

You keep all your promises. You are the Creator of heaven’s glory, Earth’s grandeur, and ocean’s greatness. The oppressed get justice WITH YOU. The hungry are satisfied WITH YOU. Prisoners find their freedom WITH YOU. You open the eyes of the blind, and you fully restore those bent over with shame. Psalm 146: 6-8 TPT

With Jesus we get justice. With Jesus we are satisfied. With Jesus we find freedom. With Jesus we are restored.
With Jesus all things are possible. Holding on to that today.
Have a great weekend!
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A Sparrow in Terezin by Kristy Cambron May 28, 2015

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 12:13 pm
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sparrow

About:

Two women, one in the present day and one in 1942, each hope for a brighter future. But they’ll both have to battle through their darkest days to reach it.

Today. With the grand opening of her new gallery and a fairytale wedding months away, Sera James appears to have a charmed life. But in an instant, the prospect of a devastating legal battle surrounding her fiancé threatens to tear her dreams apart. Sera and William rush to marry and are thrust into a world of doubt and fear as they defend charges that could separate them for life.

June 1942. After surviving the Blitz bombings that left many Londoners with shattered lives, Kája Makovsky prayed for the war to end so she could return home to Prague. But despite the horrors of war, the gifted journalist never expected to see a headline screaming the extermination of Jews in work camps. Half-Jewish with her family in danger, Kája has no choice but to risk everything to get her family out of Prague. But with the clutches of evil all around, her escape plan crumbles into deportation, and Kája finds herself in a new reality as the art teacher to the children of Terezin.

Bound by a story of hope and the survival of one little girl, both Sera and Kája will fight to protect all they hold dear.

About the Author

Kristy Cambron has been fascinated with WWII since hearing her grandfather’s stories. She holds an Art History degree from Indiana University and has 15 years industry experience as a corporate learning facilitator and communications consultant. Kristy writes WWII and Regency fiction. She makes her home in Indiana with her husband and three football-loving sons. Website: http://www.kristycambron.com Twitter: @KCambronAuthor Facebook: Kristy-L-Cambron-Author

My thoughts:

I couldn’t wait to read this book after I read Kristy’s debut novel. I wasn’t disappointed.

I love the contrast between the past and the present. I would love to know if Kristy writes all of one story and then all of the next and then breaks them up.

I wondered how the two stories related and couldn’t wait to connect the dots.

In the present we pick up with Sera and William and their marriage that is quickly interrupted. Doubt lingers in their future and around the integrity of William. But Sera stands by him and their love only grows stronger.

In the past we are with Kája and her journey to freedom, or so she thinks. But things don’t work out that way and she is thrust into a place of anything but freedom.

If you are like me and enjoy contemporary and historical this is a perfect read for you, it will satisfy much of what you look for in a good book.

Visit Kristy here.

Grab your copy at your local book store, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Books-A-Million or your favorite retailer.

An e-copy of this book was given to me by the publisher through Book Look Bloggers in exchange for an honest review.

 

Write to the Point with Angela Strong May 27, 2015

Filed under: Author Interviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:31 am
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Jordan and MeToday we get write to the point with Angela Strong. She has visited here a couple of times before. You can read her other interviews here and here. Read on to see what she is up to now.

Tell us about your newest book. I wrote a novella that is included in Love on the Run with a couple of Love Inspired Suspense authors that live here in Boise. We call ourselves Team Love on the Run. Here’s the blurb from my novella, False Security:

 

Alex Pierce needs Laney Winters to help him prove neither of them is responsible for the millions of dollars that went missing after Laney arrested him for bank robbery five years ago. Besides Laney not believing he truly repented in prison, there’s the problem of the real thief trying to kill her and the police department treating her like a dirty cop. With the possibility of anotherLove on the Run crime being pinned on them, Laney finally teams up with Alex to save her life. If only she could trust him with her heart, as well.

 

What inspired you to write this book? I love heist movies like Ocean’s Eleven, but I know the motives for robbery are not uplifting. So I took a character like Danny Ocean, had him get saved in jail then had him attempt to change his ways…except he has to make one more heist to prove himself innocent of a crime he didn’t commit. Now we’ve got the excitement of robbery plus a motive I can agree with. Win-win.

 

What was your favorite part to write? The ending is the most important part of a novel to me. I like it to be over the top with a twist that makes the reader want to go back and reread the story. And I love it when the reader knows what’s coming and the characters have no clue. So I had some fun with that.

 

Noses in booksWhat was the hardest part to write? This was a really fun book to write. No deadlines. No editor’s guidelines. I just wrote it for fun, and I wrote it in two weeks. Needless, to say I had to make some edits. Those were harder than writing the actual story. But they are so important because I want a book to work on multiple levels, and in two weeks, I didn’t have enough time to evolve all those different levels.

 

What kind of research did you do for this book? I researched gangs and guns and what you are supposed to do when getting shot at. I actually sat my kids down and told them what I’d learned in case, God forbid, there is ever a school shooting at one of their schools. I said, “You duck and run. You don’t hide behind anything because bullets can go through stuff. You get away as fast as you possibly can while making yourself as little as you possibly can. And you don’t stop outside the school and wait for emergency workers. You keep running until you know you are safe.” Scary stuff.

 

What’s the best thing about being an author? Making a difference. I love creating stories, and I get so much out of my own writing, but it’s when I get a letter from someone who learned something or was inspired by my words, that I’m like, “Yes. This is why I do this.”

 

What’s the hardest thing about being an author? Sometimes I wish I could get a normal job to make a reliable paycheck and not always have characters running around in my head that keep me from sleeping at night if I do get a normal job and have no time to write. That’s when it feels like a curse.

 

What’s one piece of advice you have for aspiring writers? You have no idea how God will use you if you are true to the gifts he’s given you and open to learning to use those gifts through hard work and patience. No idea. So keep writing and find out!

 

If you were writing about your life what would the title be? Becoming Mrs. Strong.

 

Anything you would like add? Happy birthday to my son! He’s 16 today!

Yay for May birthdays. Both of my kids have May birthdays 🙂

Thanks so much for sharing with my readers again. It’s always great to hear from you and see what you are up to.

 

 

 

The Turning by Davis Bunn May 26, 2015

Filed under: Book Reviews,Monday Musings — Melissa Finnegan @ 4:24 pm
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the turning

About:

The message was unexpected but instantly recognizable. 

A voice resonated from a distance and somehow from within.  Against all earthly logic, it carried a divine command.  And five very different people knew they were summoned to obey.

Their actions were demanding, but not particularly grand.  Only later would they see a pattern emerge – one that links their tasks together and comes to challenge the cultural direction of the nation.  They realize that one small personal response unveiled a new realm of moral responsibility.  And this affirmation of everyday hope captures the attention of millions.

But power and money are at stake.  Malicious elements soon align themselves to counter the trend.  To succeed they must also undermine its source.  Can we really believe that God speaks to people today?  Surely this must be dismissed as superstition or delusion.  These well-intentioned but misguided individuals should not be allowed to cast our society back into the Dark Ages.

The public debate and media frenzy place an unprecedented spotlight on knowing and doing God’s will.  The five encounter threats, but try to remain steadfast in their faith.  Had God indeed imparted wisdom on selected individuals?  Is this sweep of events part of his divine purpose?

The movement may herald a profound renewal – one that some are calling The Turning

My thoughts:

I requested to review this book based on another review I read. It sounded so good.

I have to say I didn’t love this book. It all seemed so random to me and it took a long time to all come together. I just never connected with the characters. Maybe because there were so many point-of-view characters?

I never got invested in this story, I’m sad to say. I really wanted to like it because it sounded so good and has gotten great reviews. But unfortunately, this one wasn’t for me.

As always, this is my opinion only and this might be a book you enjoy.

Visit Davis here.

Grab a copy at your local book store, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Books-A-Million or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

 

Sensing God’s Presence May 22, 2015

Filed under: Cool videos — Melissa Finnegan @ 1:23 pm
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mother-loveOne day some parents brought their little children to Jesus so he could touch and bless them. But when the disciples saw this, they scolded the parents for bothering him. Then Jesus called for the children and said to the disciples, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children. I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.”  Luke 18:15-17 NLT

I saw a video yesterday about how children can sense their mom by touch and smell without seeing her. I was brought to tears.

As I watched I was reminded there have been many times in my life where it seemed I didn’t see God or Him moving. Yet, if I reached out my hand I could feel Him near, I could taste and smell His goodness.

I love when the children found their mom they wrapped their little arms around her. Oh, let us come to Jesus like children. Reaching, stretching and wrapping our arms around Him.

Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend and I hope you will be blessed by this video.

Click here to check it out.

 

Water from my Heart by Charles Martin May 21, 2015

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 4:06 pm
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water from my herat

About:

Charlie Finn had to grow up fast, living alone by age sixteen. Highly intelligent, he earned a life-changing scholarship to Harvard, where he learned how to survive and thrive on the outskirts of privileged society.

That skill served him well in the cutthroat business world, as it does in more lucrative but dangerous ventures he now operates off the coast of Miami.

Charlie tries to separate relationships from work. But when his choices produce devastating consequences, he sets out to right wrongs, traveling to Central America where he will meet those who have paid for his actions, including a woman and her young daughter. Will their fated encounter present Charlie with a way to seek the redemption he thought was impossible—and free his heart to love one woman as he never knew he could?

My thoughts:

I have been wanting to read something by Charles Martin for a few years. I have heard excellent things about his books. Still, as I opened the pages of this book I wasn’t sure what to expect from his writing.

Wow. This is not your typical Christian fiction. I loved this book. Which is strange to say because our leading character isn’t a nice guy, not on the outside anyway. Deep down you can sense there is goodness in him, he just needs an encounter with the love of Christ.

This book sort of reminded me of Breaking Bad, or at least what I have heard about it. I haven’t actually watched the series, I’ve seen bits and pieces (dare I admit it?) and have heard others talk about the series. But the guy himself isn’t really a bad guy but is doing horrible things because he thinks it’s the best way to make money and make it fast.

The good news is both the character in Breaking Bad and this book see the error of their ways and try to make amends. But at what cost? What lives have been damaged because of these choices? Can things be redeemed?

Since this is a Christian book you hope there will be redemption. You but you will have to read the book for yourself to see if and how that all comes to be.

A wonderful read that will have you thinking about the book long after the last page.

Visit Charles here.

Grab your copy at your local book store, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Books-A-Million or your favorite retailer.

An e-copy of this book this book was given to me by the publisher through Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.

 

Write to the Point with Mary L. Hamilton May 20, 2015

Filed under: Author Interviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:38 am
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SeeNoEvilFrontDropCropToday we get write to the point with Mary L. Hamilton. She visited us a while ago. You can read her first interview here. Read on to see what she is up to now.

Tell us about your newest book.

See No Evil is the third and final book in the Rustic Knoll Bible Camp Series. It features Steven Miller, a blind but capable camper who has appeared in both of the first two books. He guards a dark secret that he’s carried since his dad’s death three years earlier. When a friend begins a sexting relationship while at camp, Steven tries to keep his buddy from going down a familiar path without exposing his own shameful past.

What do you do when you’re not writing?

We’ve recently moved to a new town, so I’m still getting adjusted as we look for permanent housing. But I read a lot. I also like to knit sweaters and afghans, although summer in Texas is usually too hot for that. But I love being outdoors, enjoying nature.

Where do you get your ideas?

My ideas for this series came from real life. I grew up at a Bible camp, so I used some of my experiences there. Some of my characters were inspired by people I knew at camp. Others grew out of watching the struggles of my children’s friends. I like to think about situations I observe in real life and think about how to build a story around them.

Do you outline or are you a seat-of-the-pants writer?

I start with an outline of sorts. I generally know the beginning and the end and a couple of high points in the middle. See No Evil was different, because I didn’t really know how it would end until the day before I wrote the final scene. It was a struggle all the way through that book, not knowing exactly what target to aim for. I hope not to ever repeat that experience!

Have you written a book you love that you have not been able to get published?

I was very fortunate to have the first book I wrote published. I expect there will be others in the future that will have a hard time getting published. From what I hear, most every writer goes through that at some point.

Are you like any of the characters in your book?

I don’t see myself in any of the characters in this book. The main character in the first book, Hear No Evil, probably shared some of my own characteristics, such as timidity, holding back and not really being proactive, keeping things locked up inside.

Are you working on a new project now?

I’ve been rolling an idea around in my head and am starting to flesh it out. This will be more of an adult novel, one that came to me out of my own family. It’s kind of an Odd Couple situation where a soldier returns from deployment and must share an apartment with his free-spirited younger brother.

Anything you would like to add?

I’d like to give the Lord credit for See No Evil. Being a new writer, I didn’t plan well when I created Steven in the first book. He was the ever-cheerful, well-adjusted kid. That doesn’t make for an interesting main character. Then, my original plot for Steven’s story fell apart. There were times I considered giving up and admitting I couldn’t write. But I had a signed contract to fulfill, and I decided since God had provided this opportunity, He’s probably able to help me write the book. He does, after all, know something about writing a book! I determined to put forth my best effort, and He was faithful to the very end. I hope your readers will enjoy See No Evil, as well as the other two books, and know that God is faithful in all things.

 Bio: Mary L. Hamilton grew up at a youth camp in southern Wisconsin, much like the settingMary Hamil for her Rustic Knoll Bible Camp series. While raising her own three children, she was active in her church’s youth ministry, including serving as a camp counselor for a week. She decided once was enough.

When not writing, Mary enjoys knitting, reading and being outdoors. She and her husband make their home in Texas with a rescued Golden Retriever.

Connect with Mary:

Website/blog: http://www.maryhamiltonbooks.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/maryhamiltonbooks

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/mhamiltonbooks

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/@MHamiltonAuthor

 

Back Cover blurb:

Steven Miller guards a dark secret.

Dad drilled into Steven that blindness should never be used as an excuse. So when Steven finds an old triathlon medallion among Dad’s belongings, he’s inspired to follow in his footsteps. Maybe it’ll quiet the guilt he’s carried since Dad’s death three years ago.

While Steven continues his triathlon training during his final summer at camp, a serious illness keeps Rustic Knoll’s beloved Nurse Willie from managing her clinic. When Steven teams up with his friend Claire to encourage Willie’s recovery, his feelings for Claire grow beyond friendship.

But his buddy, Dillon, has started down a dangerous path that Steven knows all too well. Can he keep his friend from falling into that sin without exposing his own past?

 

Book link: http://amzn.to/1yslU36

It was great to hear from you, Mary. Thanks so much for taking time to share with my readers.