Genesis 5020

My Story for His Glory

In the Middle of the Mess by Sheila Walsh December 16, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:59 am
Tags: ,

About:

In her long-awaited new book, Sheila Walsh equips women with a practical method for connecting with God’s strength in the midst of struggle. From daily frustrations that can feel like overwhelming obstacles to hard challenges that turn into rock-bottom crises, women will find the means to equip themselves for standing strong with God. Using the spiritual applications of confession, prayer, and meditation on Scripture to form a daily connection to Jesus, women will learn how to experience new joy as a child of God who is fully known, fully loved, and fully accepted.

In In the Middle of the Mess, Walsh reveals the hardened defenses that kept her from allowing God into her deepest hurts and shares how entering into a safe place with God and practicing this daily connection with him have saved her from the devil’s prowling attacks. Though we will never be completely “fixed” on earth, we are continually held by Jesus, whatever our circumstances.

My thoughts:

Wow. I needed to read this book. This is probably the best non-fiction book I read in 2017. I have never read anything by Sheila before but I have heard her speak a few times in Women of Faith conferences and I always enjoyed her.

This book is raw and messy. Sheila gets real with her emotions. I was worried at times that it might become depressing but it really didn’t. She talks about how we need to keep going to Jesus with our stuff, keep confessing. It isn’t one time fix all. It can be, of course. But more often than not we need to keep going to Jesus. He loves that! He wants us to come to him with our junk.

She also talks about the importance of sharing your junk with others (I couldn’t agree more) and having a community of people who you can go to when you are feeling weak.

There is a reflection at the end of each chapter that takes you deeper in your own journey. I can’t recommend this one enough.

Visit Sheila here.

Grab your copy at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me. All opinions are my own. 

Advertisements
 

Review and Giveaway: Solve by Christmas by Amber Schamel December 14, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 12:59 pm
Tags: , ,

About the Book

Solve by Christmas Historical Mystery

Name of book: Solve by Christmas

Author: Amber Schamel

Genre: Historical Christmas

Release Date: September 1, 2017

When sabotage threatens the Rudin Sugar Factory, Detective Jasper Hollock believes this will be his first real case. But dear Mr. Rudin—the only father Jasper has ever known—holds a different assignment for his private investigator.

“I’ve struck a deal with God, Jasper, and you’re my angel.”

Mr. Rudin charges Jasper to build a “case” of reasons for his employer to continue his life. If he fails, Mr. Rudin will end it in suicide on Christmas night.

As the incidents at the factory become life threatening, Jasper’s attempts at dissuading Mr. Rudin prove futile, and Jasper is left staring at the stark reality of his own soul. Time is ticking. Jasper must solve both cases by Christmas before Mr. Rudin, the company, and Jasper’s faith, are dragged to perdition. Will this be the Christmas Jasper truly discovers what makes life worth living?

“Amber Schamel’s engaging prose weaves together not one, but two edge-of-your-seat threads in this historical mystery. With the hero racing against time to solve the two cases readers will be kept guessing as they attempt to crack the case. “ ~ Laura V. Hilton author of Christmas Admirer (Whitaker House)

 

About the Author

Amber Schamel writes riveting stories that bring HIStory to life. She has a passion for history, books and her Savior. This combination results in what her readers call “historical fiction at its finest”. A homeschool graduate from a family of 12 children, Amber found her calling early in life. First published at age 21, she has continued to hone her craft and has been awarded the 2017 CSPA Book of the Year Award in Historical Fiction. Between ministry, family and working in their family-owned businesses, Amber loves to connect with readers and hang out on Goodreads with other bookish peoples. Find her on the Stitches Thru Time blog, or on any of the major social media sites. Amber is an active member of American Christian Fiction Writers.

 

Pick up your copy here.

 

Guest Post from Amber Schamel

Thank you so much for joining us on the Celebrate Lit blog tour for Solve by Christmas!! I am so excited you’re here. For this special event, I wanted to share the inside scoop behind the story.

Solve by Christmas is a historical Mystery set in Denver during the great blizzard of 1913. It has a unique storyline, so people often wonder where the idea came from. Honestly, it was one of those ideas that just popped into my head, then took on a life of its own and evolved over several weeks.

I wanted to give my readers a new story before the year was out, but I didn’t have a specific plot in mind. I did know I wanted to write a Christmas story. So, I had that much. Then I decided I wanted something with a firm deadline.” If this doesn’t happen by this date, everyone dies” sort of thing. Then “By Christmas” popped into my head and flicked on a light. What if Christmas was the deadline?

I’ve always loved detectives and mystery stories, and they go perfectly with deadlines. So, then I thought, what if a detective must solve the case by Christmas or death wins?

Sometimes, as an author, there are ideas and thoughts that seem to come out of nowhere. Almost like God dropping a card into your mental mailbox. The next point of Solve by Christmas was that way. What if a detective was assigned a case that he had to solve by Christmas, but it wasn’t a real case –at least not the type of case he wanted—but something completely different? From there, the story began to really take shape.

The next step, of course, is to come up with a character to be the detective. I wanted the story to have a Sherlock Holmes feel, so I started by studying his character a bit. But my story also has a less serious side since it isn’t a murder mystery and takes place at a sugar factory. I wondered…what would happen if you took Sherlock Holmes and meshed him with Barney Fife?

Now THAT would be hard to pull off. But I was determined to try. So, I made a list of Sherlock Holmes traits, and one of Barney Fife’s traits. I began to see that they actually DO have several similarities. They’re both a bit socially awkward. They both have a very similar flavor of pride. And they both have this air of authority…although Sherlock can back his up while Barney struggles in that area. Then I began to pick and choose between the traits that were left, this Barney trait, this Sherlock trait, and pretty soon I had Detective Jasper Hollock forming on the page. Whether you will get a Barney Fife and Sherlock feel when you read Solve by Christmas, I can’t say. But I do believe I was successful in creating a unique, quirky character that will bring this Christmas mystery to life.

There you have it. The scoop behind Solve by Christmas. I hope you enjoy the story, and best wishes in the giveaway! I will be stopping by along with Jasper and Denny (the two main characters) to answer any questions you may have about the story or the characters, so please do leave us a comment.

Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, December 12

A Simply Enchanted Life, December 12

Connie’s History Classroom, December 13

Bigreadersite, December 13

The Fizzy Pop Collecton, December 14

Genesis5020, December 14

Baker Kella, December 15

Daysong Reflections, December 15

History, Mystery & Faith, December 16

Karen Sue Hadley, December 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, December 17

Christian Author, J.E.Grace, December 17

Aryn The Libraryan, December 18

A Reader’s Brain, December 18

Bibliophile Reviews, December 19

Mary Hake, December 19

Texas Book-aholic, December 20

Simple Harvest Reads, December 20

Babs Book Bistro, December 21

Reading Is My SuperPower, December 21 (Interview)

Seasons of Opportunities, December 22

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 22

Just the Write Escape, December 23

The Power of Words, December 23

Live.Love.Read., December 24

Carpe Diem, December 24

Blogging With Carol, December 25

The Important Things in Life: God, Books, & Chocolate, December 25

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Amber is giving away a grand prize of a Christmas themed basket which will include a paperback copy of Solve by Christmas and The Swaddling Clothes (my two Christmas books) as well as a Christmas terrarium jar, and a Solve by Christmas notepad!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c5bb

My thoughts:

This was a really good read. I enjoyed it and the spirit of Christmas and reconciliation in the book.

Jasper is a quirky character, I can relate:) He has some oddities and I appreciate that about him. He is determined to do his job and do it well. He is a busy man with all that is going on in this book.

Denny sure endeared himself to me as well, Jasper’s little unwanted sidekick.

Obviously, this book deals with a pretty heavy issue but it is written in such away that it didn’t bring the story down and you have this sense of hope throughout. I found this book to be  a charming and engaging read.

Grab your copy at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to my through the Celebrate Lit Team. All opinions are my own. 

 

Review and Giveaway: The Hope of Christmas December 11, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:52 am
Tags: ,

About the Book

Title: The Hope of Christmas

Author: Jodie Wolfe, Terri Wangard, Linda Shenton Matchett

Genre: Historical Christmas

Release Date: November 24, 2017

Picking a Bride for Paul
When Teddy Love’s neighbor and best friend breaks his leg, she pitches in to do whatever she can to help him on his farm. But when he enlists her aid in finding a wife, she comes to realize she has feelings for him.
Paul Baker follows his heart mother’s wishes by looking for a bride from the East who is refined and gentile, two qualities Teddy isn’t. When his potential bride arrives, he finds himself comparing her to Teddy. How can he go back and change things before he makes the biggest mistake of his life?

 

Typhoon Prompting

A destroyer escort is among the smallest of warships, but the USS Tabberer has the heart of a giant. A typhoon threatens the US Fleet in the Pacific during World War II, days before Christmas. The men of the Tabberer stand tall as they rush to the aid of their fellow sailors. For Seaman Jerry Collier, the typhoon prompts a greater awareness of what he wants in life. First, though, they have to survive.

A Dr. in the House
Emma O’Sullivan is one of the first female doctors to enlist after President Franklin Roosevelt signs the order allowing women in the Army and Navy medical corps. Within weeks, Emma is assigned to England to set up a convalescent hospital, and she leaves behind everything that is familiar. When the handsome widower of the requisitioned property claims she’s incompetent and tries to get her transferred, she must prove to her superiors she’s more than capable. But she’s soon drawn to the good-looking, grieving owner. Will she have to choose between her job and her heart?

Archibald “Archie” Heron is the last survivor of the Heron dynasty, his two older brothers having been lost at Dunkirk and Trondheim and his parents in the Blitz. After his wife is killed in a bombing raid while visiting Brighton, he begins to feel like a modern-day Job. To add insult to injury, the British government requisitions his country estate, Heron Hall, for the U.S. Army to use as a hospital. The last straw is when the hospital administrator turns out to be a fiery, ginger-haired American woman. She’s got to go. Or does she?

 

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Authors

JodieJodie Wolfe creates novels where hope and quirky meet. She’s been a semi-finalist and finalist in various writing contests and is a member of ACFW. When not writing she enjoys spending time with her husband in Pennsylvania, reading, walking, and being a Grammie. Learn more at http://www.jodiewolfe.com.

 

TerriTerri Wangard grew up in Green Bay, Wisconsin, during the Lombardi Glory Years. Her first Girl Scout badge was the Writer. Holder of a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in library science, she lives in Wisconsin. Classic BoatingMagazine, a family business since 1984, keeps her busy as an associate editor.

lindaLinda Shenton Matchett is a journalist, blogger, author, and history geek. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, a stone’s throw from Fort McHenry, Linda has lived in historical places most of her life-from Edison, New Jersey (named for the famed inventor of the light bulb) and Washington, DC to Wolfeboro, New Hampshire (reputed to be the oldest summer resort in America). She volunteers at the Wright Museum of WWII and as a trustee for her local public library.

 

Blog Stops

Christian Author J.E. Grace, December 10

Blogging With Carol, December 10

Genesis 5020, December 11

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, December 11

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, December 12

Have A Wonderful Day, December 12

Mommynificent, December 13

Inklings and notions, December 13

Jeanette’s Thoughts, December 14

Mary Hake, December 14

The Power of Words, December 15

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 15

A Greater Yes, December 16

Texas Book-aholic, December 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 17

Radiant Light, December 18

Janices book reviews, December 18

Carpe Diem, December 19

A Baker’s Perspective, December 19

Reading Is My SuperPower, December 20

margaret kazmierczak, December 21

Pursuing Stacie, December 21

Maureen’s Musings, December 22

Blossoms and Blessings, December 23

Bigreadersite, December 23

Giveaway

To celebrate the tour, Celebrate Lit Publishing is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c514

My thoughts:

Looking for some sweet and quick Christmas stories? Look no further then here. This book  has three stories that will keep you engaged and also give you the Christmas “feels”.

Each story is unique and engaging. They have different settings then you might expect with these novellas and I appreciated that.

I love what these authors packed into a short read, they managed to get all it all in, character development, setting and of course Jesus. If you want a few quick reads I recommend this one.

Grab your copy at Amazon,  or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me through the Celebrate Lit Team. All opinions are my own. 

 

Review and Giveaway: Christmas Embers by Chautona Havig December 7, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:55 am
Tags: , ,

About the Book

Name of book: Christmas Embers

Author: Chautona Havig

Genre: Contemporary Christmas

Release Date: November 25, 2016

It’s a truth universally unacknowledged that sin will hunt you down and advertise its presence the moment you try to hide it.

Emily Byrne sits in her daughter’s classroom listening to the deepest wishes of twenty kindergarteners as she sketches them. But when little Joey Cordell breaks down, weeping and insisting the only thing he wants to find is his father, she isn’t sure where her Christmas project will take her.

Davia Cordell came to Rockland for one purpose–find her son’s father before she dies. An ex-prostitute, she’s well aware that the news will cause waves, but what’s a mother to do?

As these women join forces to search for Joey’s father–a Rockland area pastor, no less– Emily learns compassion for a woman who just wants the best for her son and can’t quite imagine that Jesus wants anything to do with her.

Each day, Davia weakens until Emily isn’t confident she’ll find the boy’s father in time–if at all. Doubts form. Should she look? Is it right to risk destroying a family like this–an entire church? The weight of that responsibility crushes her as Davia wastes away before her eyes.

A mother’s love. A boy’s confidence. A family’s faith. A preacher’s failure. Is redemption even possible anymore?

Christmas Embers: a story of love, failure, and redemption.

Click here to purchase your copy!

About the Author

Author of the Amazon bestselling Aggie and Past Forward Series, Chautona Havig lives and writes in California’s Mojave Desert. With dozens of books to her name, Chautona spends most of her time writing, but when she takes the rare break, she can be found reading, sewing, paper crafting, or sleeping and dreaming of finishing the dozens of books swirling in her overly-active imagination at any given moment.

 

Guest Post from Chautona Havig

Infidelity to the Tune of Adeste Fideles

“I think my husband is having an affair.”

An explanation followed. Look, I tend to be one who assumes the best of others—to a fault even. I read the “evidence” and frankly could see it going either way. It’s hard to tell across thousands of miles. While others on the message board saw red flag after red flag—and frankly, I did, too—I also saw perfectly innocent explanations for things. It’s a curse sometimes—that ability to see both sides of an issue. I cautioned against assumptions no one would want other people to make of themselves. And I prayed she was wrong.

She wasn’t.

It wasn’t the first time I’d come face to face with infidelity. As a child, there was an extended family member. As a newlywed, one of my wedding party—then another. Then another. The excuses, the justifications. Friends and I went to confront a sister in Christ on her affair with her husband’s best friend. We foolishly asked “what happened?” regarding her marriage. Her words: “We drifted apart.”

I wanted to scream the words that battered my brain and heart. “Then row back together!

But over the years, it just grew worse. One by one, wives and husbands tossed aside vows made to a brother or sister in Christ—vows made before the Lord—in favor of what sometimes were serial affairs. Abuse. Horror.

I’ve prayed women I love through court cases, medical visits, and disclosures from children no mother should ever have to hear. I’ve prayed for men I didn’t even like because of the pain their wives inflicted each time she left them alone with the kids. He knew. He always knew.

Adultery is real. It’s ugly. And there’s absolutely a cure for it. Jesus. 100% surrender to Jesus. But as long as we rely on those little loops on the back of our boots instead of the saving, healing, strengthening power of Jesus, we’re just as vulnerable as the next person.

And that’s why I wrote Christmas Embers. I took every heartbreaking story I’d observed over the years and put in each character for a reason. Every scene, every plot point, every twist—I put them exactly how and where they are for a reason.

They’re there as a warning.

This isn’t your lighthearted Christmas novel. Some have suggested I shouldn’t have set it at Christmastime. But you know what? Over half the disclosures I’ve ever heard of happened between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. I couldn’t get the idea of Joey’s story out of my head. And to write his story, it had to be at Christmas.

Let me say it again. While Christmas may not seem like the optimal time for a hard-hitting book like this, I had to do it. Adultery is reaching epidemic proportions in the church. There’s a solution. His name is Jesus.

Blog Stops

Carpe Diem, December 5

A Baker’s Perspective, December 5

Mary Hake, December 5

Moments Dipped in Ink, December 6

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, December 6

Daysong Reflections, December 6

Fiction Aficionado, December 7

A Simply Enchanted Life, December 7

Genesis 5020, December 7

Blogging With Carol, December 8

The Power of Words, December 8

Bigreadersite, December 8

Reading Is My SuperPower, December 9

A Greater Yes, December 9

Radiant Light, December 9

Just Jo’Anne, December 10

For The Love of Books, December 10

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, December 10

Aryn the Libraryan, December 11

A Reader’s Brain, December 11

The Fizzy Pop Collection, December 12

Books, Books, and More Books., December 12

Quiet Quilter, December 13

Seasons of Opportunities, December 13

Christian Book Devourer, December 13

Allofakindmom, December 14

Texas Book-aholic, December 14

Pursuing Stacie, December 14

Pause for Tales, December 15

Reader’s cozy corner, December 15

margaret kazmierczak, December 15

Red Headed Book Lady, December 16

Purposeful Learning, December 16

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 16

Janices book reviews, December 17

Christian Bookaholic, December 17

Karen Sue Hadley, December 18

Remembrancy, December 18

Blossoms and Blessings, December 18

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Chautona is giving away a grand prize of a 6 month Kindle Unlimited Subscription!!

Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/c512

My thoughts:

It’s always interesting, and a bit challenging, for me to read a book that hits so close to home. My whole blog was started because of my story of infidelity so reading it can be difficult at times. It’s more about reading the after effects of it. It’s was so hard and Chautona does a great job making it real.

It did take me while to get into the book. I had a feeling how things would play out but wasn’t sure. I felt a bit like the temptations and infidelity didn’t have too much basis, like it was random. There is usually more than one reason why things like this happen, it isn’t typically random but something someone has toyed with for a while and then eventually acts on. However, pride can be a huge factor that can lead others astray (which is what happens here), it blinds people to the truth, it did for me.

Overall, this story is a story of hope that so many need to hear and embrace and believe. I love how it ends, this is a Genesis 5020 story:)

Grab your copy at Amazon, Barnes and Noble,  or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me through the Celebrate Lit Team. All opinions are my own. 

 

The Gift of the Inn by Golden Keyes Parsons December 4, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 9:03 pm
Tags: ,

About:

The Lockhart family suffered a tragic loss when their infant daughter was kidnapped on Christmas Eve eighteen years before at the boarding house Naomi’s parents managed. Now Naomi and her husband have taken over the inn nestled in the foothills of Colorado. The novel follows Gracie’s search for her biological parents as she travels from San Antonio, Texas, to Colorado, as well as her husband, Jack’s tour of duty as a bombardier in the notorious flying fortress, the B17 bomber, over Germany. The reader will encounter plenty of excitement to keep them turning the pages, as well as romance, and the answer to a mother’s prayers for the return of her child on a snowy Christmas Eve at the inn.

My thoughts:

It took me a couple of chapters to really get into this book but once I was in, I was in. So many layers and so much going on. It was mysterious, yet hopeful. Full of love and family.

The connections being made between the characters was moving. There are many different points of view to see the story from, but it added more depth and perspective to the story that you otherwise couldn’t have gotten.

There is a great amount of tension in this book to keep you turning the pages. If you are looking for a Christmas read this is good one.

Visit Golden here.

Grab your copy at Amazon, Barnes and Noble or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

 

Christmas Captive by Liz Johnson December 1, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 8:47 pm
Tags: , ,

About:

Trapped at sea for a Christmas cruise wedding when criminals board and take over the ship, the navy SEAL best man, Jordan Somerton, and DEA agent maid of honor, Amy Delgado, must work together to stop the would-be kidnappers from leaving with Amy’s young niece.

My thoughts:

This one is a nail-biter. From the beginning until the end you never knew what was going to happen.

Amy is a strong woman, who will do what needs to be done to protect those she loves and Jordan is a strong man that will do what needs to be done to protect those HE loves, even those he doesn’t realize he might love.

If you are looking for a suspenseful Christmas read, this one is for you.

Visit Liz here.

Grab your copy at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

 

True Identity by John C. Majors November 29, 2017

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:40 pm
Tags: , ,

About:

Jock. Nerd. Popular. Band Geek.

We all get labeled. Sometimes in a good way; other times, not so much. But these labels don’t describe the real you–your TRUE IDENTITY. This book will help you think about what–and who–really defines you.

As you adventure into a life of greater independence, responsibility, and maturity, there is one thing you need to know: You are defined by your place in a greater plan than you can imagine. Not by society, your gender, your family background, or your friend group–but by Someone you can always count on.

Discover who you are meant to be and find the confidence to live out your true identity!

My thoughts:

This is a very important topic for teens. They are desperately trying to find their identity in this world. Honestly, even adults are. So this is a very timely book.

John starts with the basic foundation, our identity in Christ and how that is truly the foundation for everything else in life.

He tackles some tough topics, such as transgender and same-sex attraction. He handled it very well. My only complaint is I wish he might have talked about some the issues that lead to people believing they are transgender or gay. He didn’t touch on any underlying causes and I believe that plays a huge role in why kids are turning to these lifestyles. So, I was disappointed by that.

I did like how he handled the chapter on dating and that is one I for sure will be encouraging my daughter to read.

Overall, this is a very good book and I think important for our teens to be reading.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com or your favorite retailer.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher. All opinions are my own.