Genesis 5020

Stories for His Glory

Heaven is for Real, Movie Edition by Todd Burpo and Lynn Vincent April 16, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 4:28 pm
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heaven

Book Description

“Do you remember the hospital, Colton?” Sonja said.“Yes, mommy, I remember,” he said. “That’s where the angels sang to me.”

When four-year-old Colton Burpo made it through an emergency appendectomy his family was overjoyed at his miraculous survival. What they weren’t expecting, though, was the story that emerged in the following months—a story as beautiful as it was extraordinary, detailing their little boy’s trip to heaven and back.

This true story, retold by his father but using Colton’s uniquely simple words, offers a glimpse of the world that awaits us, where as Colton says, “Nobody is old and nobody wears glasses.”

Heaven is for Real will forever change the way you think of eternity, offering the chance to see, and believe like a child.

Bonus material in this special movie edition includes:

  • Photos from the movie set
  • Updates from father, Todd, and son, Colton, on recent events including the making-of-the-movie experience
  • “From the Set” Q&A’s with the movie’s filmmakers and actors

My thoughts:

Today Heaven is for Real comes to theaters. I have seen the previews and want to cry everytime I see it. I just know I will be crying through the movie.

This book has been on my wish list for a long time and when the chance came to review the movie edition I jumped on it.

For the most part it is the same as the first edition but there are pictures added of the family and of the movie actors. It’s pretty cool to see Colton as a little boy and some pictures of his family right before everything happened.

There are also interviews you can read at the end of the book, very interesting.

Basically, if you haven’t read this book yet I am asking what are you waiting for?

This book will remind you that Jesus is closer than you think. That even when you feel like God isn’t listening He always is and is moving on our behave. I loved when Todd realized that as he was yelling at God, Colton was with Jesus and Jesus saw Todd.

This book will give you a lot to think about and rejoice in. Our God is so good.

Visit the official Heaven is for Real website here.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Deeper Shopping or Books-A-Million.

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

 

What Follows After by Dan Walsh April 10, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 1:05 pm
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what follows after

About:

In 1962, life was simple, the world made sense, and all families were happy.
And when they weren’t, everyone knew you were supposed to pretend.

For the past year, Scott and Gina Harrison have been living a lie. While they show up at family get-togethers in the same car, they’ve actually been separated for over a year. To keep up the charade, they’ve even instructed their sons, Colt and Timmy, to lie–to their grandparents, their teachers, and their friends.

Colt, for one, has had enough, so he hatches a plan. He and his little brother will run away from their Florida home, head for their aunt’s house in Georgia, and refuse to come home until their parents get back together. But when things go terribly, terribly wrong, Scott and Gina must come to grips with years of neglect and mistrust in order to recover their beloved sons, their love for one another, and their marriage.

In this emotional story, bestselling author Dan Walsh takes you on a journey to rediscover the things that matter most in life–love, truth, and family. With profound insight into the heart of a hurting child, he reminds us that a time will come to look back on hard times and smile, because we’ll know that what follows after . . . is not what we expected at all.

My thoughts:

I have been wanting to read a book by Dan Walsh for a long time. I have heard he is an excellent writer.

I am hear to tell you that is true.

In What Follows After we are taken back to the 1960s and the backdrop of the story is the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Well, what would happen if two boys went missing the same day the president was to come on t.v. to address the nation? Would the needs of these boys gets pushed to the side because of man power needed elsewhere?

We take so much for granted in 2014. The power of the internet to get information spread quickly is helpful but that wasn’t an option in 1962. They had to completely rely on word of mouth to get information out. So different from today.

Then we have Scott and Gina the parents who have been pretending to be married but now they must face the truth. Could anything bring these to hard-hearted people back together? Well, you’ll just have to read the book to find out.

Any mother will have her heart twisted in knots as you read this story and we hope for the best.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Deeper Shopping or Books-A-Million.

Visit Dan’s website here.

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

 

Pulling Back the Shades April 7, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews,Monday Musings — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:24 am
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pulling pack the shades

Puling Back the Shades

by

Dannah Gresh and Dr. Juli Slattery

About:

Christian women don’t have to choose between being sexual and spiritual. They have legitimate longings that the Church has been afraid to talk about, and books like Fifty Shades of Grey exploit. Whether you are single or married, sexually dead or just looking to revive your sex life, Pulling Back the Shades will address your desire to be both sexual AND spiritual. With solid Biblical teaching and transparent stories, trusted authors Dannah Gresh  and Dr. Juli Slattery, offer an unflinching look at the most personal questions women ask. The book offers practical advice for women to address five core longings:

  • to be cherished by a man
  • to be protected by a strong man
  • to rescue a man
  • to be sexually alive
  • to escape reality

God designed women with these longings and has a plan to satisfy them. It’s time for women to identify their intimate longings and God-honoring ways to fulfill them.

My thoughts:

I believe this is a much needed book. I am sure there are many Christian women, married and single, who are being deceived by erotica such as Fifty Shades of Gray. The devil is tricking married women into thinking it will help their marriage and single women into thinking this is an outlet to keep them pure. These are lies.

God even convicted me to stop reading Nicholas Sparks, which isn’t erotica but does have sexual content that made me feel and think things that were not holy (I know other women can read this type of book and they are fine, this is God’s conviction for me me). I know there are even women who won’t read Christian romance because it makes them think about things they shouldn’t.

But honestly, I believe erotica is a no brainer. That is not from God at all. Here’s how I would look at it: If I knew Jesus was standing over my shoulder  looking at what I was reading (which He is, nothing is hidden from Him) would I be embarrassed?

This book addresses many issues. These authors did a wonderful job of tackling some very tough topics but in a loving way. Not only do they address these issues but they give you ideas for ways to move on and get help. And for those of us who don’t struggle with this type of thing they give us ideas how we can help these women who are desperate for love.

I was not bored one moment in this book. Dannah and Juli have written a highly informative and engaging book. I highly recommend this one.

Grab your copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Deeper Shopping or Books-A-Million.

Visit Juli’s website here.

Visit Dannah’s website here.

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

 

 

Hands of Darkness by Heather James April 3, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:40 am
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hands of darkness

Hands of Darkness

by

Heather James

About:

Evelyn Barrett has a new job, a new baby, and a new life—of sorts. Nearly crushed by the horrific abduction and murder of her daughter (book 1, Unholy Hunger), Evelyn is moving on as best she can.

No longer allowed to practice law, she is recruited by one of the detectives from her daughter’s case to become a police consultant. Her inaugural case becomes a baptism by fire as she joins the hunt for a chillingly methodical and sadistic serial rapist and murderer.

Her revulsion and anger fuels a passion for justice . . . and then it becomes personal. Her friend and law school roommate, Jen, becomes a victim. The rapist has made a catastrophic mistake with Jen: he has left her alive and able to talk.

Filled with the chilling tension of Unholy Hunger, Hands of Darkness explores the emotional and spiritual consequences for all involved when justice and compassion collide head-on with the darkest examples of human depravity.

My thoughts:

Oh my. This book had me gripping the pages.

This is a fast-paced page turner that is not for the faint of heart. You are in the mind of a killer for part of the book. His thoughts andhands actions sickened me. Yet you see how abuse and brokenness leaves its wounds so deeply in people and without the healing power of Christ our brokenness will hurt others.

Then there is Evelyn who is one tough cookie. She has attitude that is for sure, but you can’t help but like her. She has been through junk of her own. I haven’t read the first book in this series, although it’s been on my wish list. Now I really want to read it. If it is anything like this book I know I won’t be disappointed.

If you enjoy suspense you will eat this book up. It is so good it kept me up at night, that takes a lot because I like my sleep 🙂

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

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

 

Meet Betsy Duffey and Laurie Myers (Review and Giveaway) March 31, 2014

Filed under: Author Interviews,Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 9:35 am
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betsy

Take a minute to learn about authors Betsy Duffey and Laurie Myers and their journey to publication. At the end I have reviewed their lastest book and they have a giveaway for you.

Bio:

Betsy Duffey and Laurie Myers are sisters who write together.  They were born into a writing family, and began critiquing manuscripts at an early age for their mother, Newbery winner Betsy Byars.  They went on to become authors of more than thirty-five children’s novels. Their first book for adults  is The Shepherd’s Song,  Howard Books, March 2014.

Links:

www.WritingSisters.com

www.facebook.com/WritingSisters

www.amazon.com/The-Shepherds-Song-Second-Chances/dp/1476738203

Back copy of the book:

 

Follow the incredible journey of one piece of paper—a copy of Psalm 23—as it travels around the world, linking lives and hearts with its simple but beautiful message.

 

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.  He makes me lie down in green pastures. . .

 

Shortly before a tragic car accident, Kate McConnell wrote down the powerful words of Psalm 23 on a piece of paper for her wayward son.  Just The Shepherd's Song - cover imagebefore she loses consciousness, Kate wonders if she’s done enough with her life and prays, “Please let my life count.”

Unbeknownst to Kate, her handwritten copy of Psalm 23 soon begins a remarkable journey around the world.  From a lonely dry cleaning employee to a soldier wounded in Iraq, to a young Kurdish girl fleeing her country, to a Kenyan runner in the Rome Invitational Marathon, this humbling message forever changes the lives of twelve different people.  Eventually, Kate’s paper makes it back to its starting place, and she discovers the unexpected ways that God changes lives, even through the smallest gestures.

With beautiful prose evocative of master storyteller Andy Andrews’s The Butterfly Effect, this story will touch your heart and remind you of the ways God works through us to reach beyond what we can imagine.

 

Guest Post:

 

After many years of writing children’s books we made a decision to write for God.  We started our first book for God with great hope and expectation. We had our mission statement:

 

To tell the next generation the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord. Psalm 78:4

 

We had the vision that we felt was from God: to use fiction to show how scripture can change lives.   We wrote with passion and with prayer and the result was beyond what we could have hoped for.  It seemed that all would go smoothly.  After all God was on our side. Then we hit some bumps in the road.

 

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

 

 The First Rejection

The first difficult rejection we faced together was in the submission of a children’s book trilogy that we still love and still feel was inspired by God. The book made it to the sales meeting of a publisher and we were very encouraged by the initial comments and questions.  Then the call came. They said no.  It’s not that we hadn’t experienced rejection before, we had…lots.  But this seemed so different.  We were writing specifically for God.

 

The rejection of the children’s trilogy made us stop and rededicate our work to God.  The rejection opened us up to look at other possibilities in our writing.  We were doing something that was familiar to us, writing children’s books.

 

We wrote down three ideas for our next writing project and one of those ideas, was The Shepherd’s Song.  It was a total surprise to us that we would attempt to write for adults.  Out of our pain, God birthed something new. The course of our writing careers had been shifted by rejection.

 

Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.

Psalm 30:5

 

The Second Rejection

The second tough rejection was our 16 minute rejection.  Our book for adults was complete.  We had met an agent at a conference who was interested in representing us.  We sat in the coffee shop where we write and pressed send on the computer and submitted The Shepherd’s Song to this agent.  Sixteen minutes later an email popped up. We assumed the email had bounced back. Not so.  The agent had said no.

 

We sat in silence for minute, then prayed, what can we learn from this? God, what do you have for us in this?  The agent could not have even read it.  We looked carefully at the cover page of the query.  Maybe the word count.  We were not familiar with word counts for adult books and 35,000 words to us seemed a gracious plenty.  Some research proved us wrong and over the next two weeks we added 20,000 words to the book.  Our book was shaped by rejection.

 

I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. Romans 8:18

The Third Rejection

Then we had a chance to pitch of the book at a conference.  We had rehearsed our fifteen minutes to present the book to an editor that we admire.  Three minutes into the pitch she looked at us, tossed our one sheet back at us, and said, “I don’t get it.”  And she didn’t. She said no.  Somehow we made it back to the hotel room. We laid on our beds for a long while. We prayed and learned something: we were letting the book down. We weren’t presenting it well.  We rewrote the first chapter and refined our pitch.  Our pitch was refined by rejection.

 

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4

 

The Happy Ending

Fast forward, two months later when we met our agent, Greg Johnson, at a chance meeting at lunch during a conference. We were ready. We had an adult book ready for him, 55,000 words, a great first chapter and a knock-out pitch. He said yes!

 

Over the course of our writing careers we have experienced a lot more than three rejections!  We don’t like rejection but we see it differently now.

 

In every vision there is some refining.  God often uses pain or rejection to help us refine our God-given vision.  In hindsight it makes perfect sense.  When you are going through it, it just feels like pain.  But later you understand.

 

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.  Galatians 6:9

My thoughts and giveaway:

What a beautiful story.

From the first few pages my heart was captured by the message of this book.

Have you ever wondered if your life really makes a difference? I think we all have. This book will encourage you to believe that you are making a difference in ways and in people’s lives that you have never met or imagined.

You will follow one piece of paper as it makes it way across the world and see how God’s Word can transforms lives. I love how each chapter is really like a short story all by its self. But each chapter is connected by the Word of God. With each page turn I wondered how was the paper going to reach someone new and how would it touch their lives?

Everyone has a story, as I believe with all my heart, and this book shares the stories of broken individuals in need of hope and who find it in the best place possible, the Word of God.

If you enjoy stories that encourage, you will love A Shepherd’s Song.

Grab a copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Deeper Shopping or Book-A-Million.

Leave a comment for Betsy and Laurie by April 8th at 5:00 pm to be entered to win your own copy.

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

 

 

Review and Giveaway: Summer of Joy Ann H. Gabhart March 24, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews,Monday Musings — Melissa Finnegan @ 9:43 am
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Summer of joy

Summer of Joy

by

Ann H. Gabhart

About:

As summer draws to a close Jocie’s world seems serene–but is it just the calm before a storm?

Unbeknownst to Jocie Brooke and her family, two people are making their way to the small town of Hollyhill, Kentucky. One everyone thought was gone for good and the other no one’s ever heard of. Still, one thing is sure–they promise trouble. The past is coming to call, threatening to destroy strong relationships that everyone has simply taken for granted.
The summer of 1964 may be winding down, but the controversy in this little community where nothing ever seems to change is just heating up.
Bestselling author Ann Gabhart invites you to Hollyhill for a story both exciting and enduring that will stick with you long after you turn the last page.

My thoughts and giveaway:

This is a book that took me a few chapters to really get into but once the book grabbed me I didn’t want it to let me go.

There are many different characters in this story and you will be in the head of a lot of them. It think that’s why it took me a while to get into it, the first few chapters I was in a different person’s head and didn’t connect with any of them right away.

This is the third book in a series and there are a few references to things that took place in the other books but once I got a grasp on what was happening in this book I had no problem absorbing this charming set of characters and the intriguing plot.

I really liked the mystery behind Mr. Hammond who is Jocie’s English teacher and seems to have it out for her and have a thing for Leigh, David’s (Jocie’s dad) girlfriend/fiancé. What’s going on with him?  Why does he seem to be targeting Jocie and her family?

Then there are people from the past who have the potential to show up in Hollyhill and shake things up. What will happen to the characters we have come to love once they come and bring their baggage with them?

This story is full of broken people who need a Savior. God’s grace is all over this book and great example of how each of us need to  extend that grace to our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Leave a comment by March 30th at 5:00 pm to be entered to win this book for yourself. (U.S. residents only)

Grab a copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Deeper Shopping or Books-A-Million.

Visit Ann’s website here.

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

 

Tide and Tempest by Elizabeth Ludwig March 20, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 4:38 pm
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This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Tide and Tempest
Bethany House Publishers (March 4, 2014)
by
Elizabeth Ludwig

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Elizabeth Ludwig is an award-winning author whose work has been featured on Novel Rocket, the Christian Authors Network, and The Christian Pulse. Her first novel, Where the Truth Lies (co-authored with Janelle Mowery), earned her the 2008 IWA Writer of the Year Award. This book was followed in 2009 by “I’ll be Home for Christmas”, part of the Christmas anthology collection, Christmas Homecoming.

In 2011, her second mystery, Died in the Wool (co-authored with Janelle Mowery) was nominated for a Carol Award. In 2012, the popular EDGE OF FREEDOM series released from Bethany House Publishers. Books one and two, No Safe Harbor and Dark Road Home, respectively, earned 4 Stars from the RT Book Reviews. Book three, Tide and Tempest, received top honors with 4 1/2 Stars.

Elizabeth is an accomplished speaker and teacher, often attending conferences and seminars where she lectures on editing for fiction writers, crafting effective novel proposals, and conducting successful editor/agent interviews. Along with her husband and children, she makes her home in the great state of Texas.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Two years ago, her fiance perished during their voyage to America.

Now she discovers it may have been murder…

Dreaming of a better life, Tillie McGrath leaves Ireland behind and, with her beloved fiance by her side, sets sail for America. But when illness robs her of the man she holds dear, she’s left alone with only a handful of tattered memories. While forging on proves difficult, Tillie soon finds some new friends at her New York boardinghouse, and begins pursuing a new dream–to open a home for orphaned children.

Despite two years passing, Captain Keondric Morgan has never forgotten the lass who left his ship so heartbroken. When a crewman’s deathbed confession reveals her fiance’s demise was the result of murder, the captain knows he must try to contact her. But his attention draws the notice of others as well–dangerous men who believe Tillie has in her possession something that could expose their crimes. And to their way of thinking, the best way to prevent such an outcome is to seize the evidence and then hand Tillie the same fate as her naïve fiance.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Tide and Tempest, go HERE.

My thoughts:

Elizabeth has written another page turner. It was nice to catch up with some familiar characters. But, have no fear, even though this is the third book in a series if you haven’t read the first two you won’t be lost. Actually, I have read the second one and I found myself wasting time trying to remember what happened so I could make the connections. But I don’t really think any connections needed to be made. You could easily pick of this book and fully enjoy it.

And there is a lot to enjoy. I love good Irish characters and I couldn’t help but think that handsome Irishman (Captain Morgan) on the front cover reminded me of my Irish husband.

Elizabeth has weaved together a layered story full of romance and suspense. There’s even a bit of jealousy between two brothers who are looking out for Tillie (our heroine). I loved that tension. But Tillie was definitely drawn more to the more solemn, serious brother, Captain Morgan.

I so identified with Tillie being unable to forgive herself for her past. She has made mistakes like so many of us and wonders how any good man could ever love her as tainted as she is and if God can truly forgive her for what she has done?

Then there’s all the suspense. Who can Tillie really trust, who will die next? Why are people dyeing in the first place? So many questions and the only way you will find the answers is by reading the book.

This is the perfect marriage of historical romance and suspense all in one book.

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher through the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance in exchange for an honest review.

 

The Long Awakening March 18, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews,Tuesday Thoughts — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:44 am
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the long awakening

The Long Awakening

by

Lindsey O’Connor

About:

The riveting true story of a life-threatening coma, a miraculous awakening, and the long quest to regain what was lost. The day our baby came into the world was the day I left. A day that began all smiles and excitement and anticipation and joy ended with running and panic and blood and tears. And then coma.
I lay suspended in the deep, my newborn unknown. Nothingness. Layers where dark pulled from below, light called from above, and me, trapped in between, longing to break the surface.
To live.
Forty-seven days later when I first saw my husband’s face leaning close to me, I knew where, and who, I was. But other things took much longer to know. Learning to restitch life–and love–when everything’s changed, and finding who we are afterward, can be the longest journey of all.
I’m Lindsey O’Connor, and this is the story of my long awakening.

My thoughts:

I am reviewing this book in honor of Brain Injury Awareness month.

This book sounded really interesting to me and it was. But I really struggled to follow it. The thoughts seemed very random which as first I understood. You are reading the book from Lindsey’s point-of-view and of course as she comes out of the coma she is confused.

Then the book bounces around a lot to different people, different times. This made it hard for me to stay engaged while reading.

There is a lot of beauty in this book, as Lindsey’s husband stays by her side and as you realize she hasn’t seen her baby in over a month and doesn’t even know if her baby is a live. I can’t even imagine going through that or what her older children had to experience not knowing when or if their mom would come home.

Even though I didn’t love this book you might and I always encourage you to make your own opinion. If the book sounds interesting you might want to give it try.

Visit Lindsey’s website here.

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

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

 

Review and Giveaway: A Heart’s Rebellion March 17, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews,Monday Musings — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:41 am
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a hearts

A Heart’s Rebellion

by

Ruth Axtell

About:

In a world governed by unspoken rules, one young woman is about to break them all . . .

Dutiful Jessamine Barry is tired of waiting patiently for a man to decide her future. So even though Lancelot Marfleet, second son of an aristocrat, is taking an interest in her during the London season, she refuses to consider him as a suitor. Instead, she’s ready to take fashionable society by storm–and finds a rakish young man all too willing to help her do it.

Can Jessamine trust her heart to lead her to a love that proves true through thick and thin? Or will her rash actions close the door on the life she really desires?

Lose yourself in Ruth Axtell’s sumptuous story of discovering one’s true self and finding true love.

My thoughts and giveaway:

I have never read anything by Ruth before. I have to say I love her voice. She definitely captures the regency period beautifully with her flow and prose.

At first Jessamine is a bit rough around the edges, complaining a lot. But I love tough characters because that means there’s brokenness in their lives and God can come in and heal that. Sure enough, Jessamine has had  her heart broken and isn’t over it.

She feels unworthy and not beautiful enough to win a husband so she does what so many of us do. She tries to change her outward appearance while she stuffs in her hurt. That was so me so many times in my life.

Then there’s Lancelot, not an overly handsome man but you can tell that he cares for Jessamine. Unfortunately they get off to a rocky start and Jessamine doesn’t care for Lancelot at all.

Instead her attention move to men who are not very respectable and don’t care for her best interest, but they care about how she looks.

Even though this is a historical romance I see this story playing out in many women’s lives today. This is a very relatable novel. And I could tell there would be a wonderful Genesis 5020 ending!

If you enjoy a good historical romance you will not be disappointed with this one 🙂

Visit Ruth’s website here.

Grab you copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Deeper Shopping or Books-A-Million.

Win your own copy by leaving a comment by March 23rd at 5:00 pm. (U.S. residents only)

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

 

Review and Giveaway: How Sweet the Sound by Amy K. Sorrells March 13, 2014

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 7:17 am
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This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
How Sweet the Sound
David C. Cook (March 1, 2014)
by
Amy K. Sorrells

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

An Indianapolis native and graduate of DePauw University, Amy lives with her husband, three boys and a gaggle of golden retrievers in central Indiana. After writing and editing for her college newspaper, she combined a nursing degree with journalism and creative writing, which led to publishing and editing a wide array of medical and nursing writing and multimedia projects over the past 21 years, a position as director of communications of her church’s children’s ministry, as well as a weekly column for a local newspaper which ran from 2009-2012. She has been a two-time semi-finalist for the ACFW Genesis awards, and was the winner of the 2011 Women of Faith writing contest.

When she’s not reading or writing, Amy loves spending time with her three sons; spicy lunches and art gallery walks with her husband; digging in her garden sans gloves; walking her dogs; up-cycling old furniture and junk; photography; and friends.

ABOUT THE BOOK

From a distance, the Harlans appear to be the perfect Southern family. Wealth and local fame mask the drama and dysfunction swirling through their family line. But as the summer heats up, a flood tide of long hidden secrets surface.

Devastation from a rape followed by the murder of two family members brings three generations of the Harlans together on their pecan plantation in Bay Spring, Alabama. Chief among them is Anniston, who by the time she turned thirteen thought she’d seen it all. But as her heart awakens to the possibility of love, she begins to deal with her loneliness and grief.

This tender coming-of-age tale, inspired by the story of Tamar in 2 Samuel 13, shows how true healing and hope comes only from God. Though our earthly family can wound and disappoint, our heavenly Father brings freedom to those long held captive through His mercy and grace.

If you would like to read the first chapter of How Sweet the Sound, go HERE.

My thoughts and giveaway:

First of all, isn’t this cover beautiful? I love the soft colors, they draw me in.

As lovely as the cover is the real treasure lies inside. This is my kind of book, my kind of story, my kind of healing and redemption.

This is much more than a novel, it is a voice for those who have suffered under the hands of abuse. It’s a song for those who have lost their melody under the weight of their shame.

So many times in this book I wanted to cry. There are many powerful moments, sentences that stopped me in my tracks and had me praising or praying or simply saying “Yes.”

Amy is an extremely talented author who has a very real grasp of the pain of abuse, the silence and deceit that follows. Her words are lyrical and drenched in the Spirit.

I loved so much the conversations that Comfort had with Abba. The words Amy wrote are words Abba has spoken over me like a healing balm for my wounded soul.

And even though Anni is only thirteen I could still relate to her. I so wanted her to find hope and for the truth to come out. In revealing truth there is freedom.

I could say so much more about this book but I will stop here. You need to check this one out.

Grab a copy at your local bookstore, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Christianbook.com, Deeper Shopping or Book-A-Million.

Leave a comment by March 19th at 5:00 pm to be entered to win a copy. (U.S. residents only)

A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher through the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance in exchange for an honest review.