Genesis 5020

Stories for His Glory

Under Scottish Stars by Carla Laureano August 13, 2020

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 4:53 pm
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About:

Recently widowed Serena MacDonald Stewart focuses on her children to the exclusion of her career, her art, and her sanity. When her brothers ask her to oversee the family guest house on the Isle of Skye, it’s a chance to dust off her long-ignored business skills and make a new start. But her hopes for a smooth transition are dashed when the hotel manager, Malcolm Blake, turns out to be irritating, condescending . . . and incredibly attractive.

Malcolm Blake gave up everything—his home, his girlfriend, and his career—to return to Skye and raise his late sister’s teenage daughter. With few job opportunities available on the island, he signs on as the manager of the MacDonald family hotel, which he’s soon running successfully without interference from the owners. That is, until Serena shows up, challenging his authority and his conviction that there’s nothing missing from his new life on Skye.

Before long, Serena and Malcolm have to admit the spark between them is more than mere irritation. But as single parents, there’s more on the line than their own hearts. Will their commitment to family be the thing that draws them together or the only thing that could keep them apart?

My thoughts:

I have been waiting for this book for years and it was worth the wait. Carla writes some intense contemporary romance. I loved the first two book in this series and I was excited to finally get to read Serena’s story.

Carla did a wonderful of job of building intensity between Serena and Malcolm. It was also fun to see the old characters from the other books.

There was a line toward the end that I had to highlight and share with you, because I have so been there: “….you need to stop blaming God for all the heartache in your in life. Until you do, you will never hear His voice over the sound of your own hurt.” Loved that truth right there. I lived in that for so long and only recently came out of that.

This book can easily stand alone, so have no fear if you haven’t read the first too. However, that are all so good I am sure you will want to read all three.

Visit Carla here.

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 through Netgalley. All opinions are my own. 

 

Daughter or Rome by Tessa Afshar March 6, 2020

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 6:47 pm
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About:

A woman with a devastating secret. A man bent on proving his worth. A chance encounter that catapults them into the heart of history.

When the daughter of a prominent Roman general meets a disinherited Jewish immigrant, neither one can dream of God’s plan to transform them into the most influential couple of the early church. Nor can they anticipate the mountains that will threaten to bury them. Their courtship unwittingly shadowed by murder and betrayal, Priscilla and Aquila slowly work to build a community of believers, while their lives grow increasingly complicated thanks to a shaggy dog, a mysterious runaway, and a ruthless foe desperate for love. But when they’re banished from their home by a capricious emperor, they must join forces with an unusual rabbi named Paul and fight to turn treachery into redemption.

With impeccable research and vivid detail, Daughter of Rome is both an emotive love story and an immersive journey through first-century Rome and Corinth, reminding readers once again why Debbie Macomber has said that “no one brings the Bible to life like Tessa Afshar.”

My thoughts:

I forget how much I enjoy Tessa’s writing. She does an amazing job of bringing Biblical characters to life. I have read about Priscilla and Aquila in the Bible and seen other books based on their story but haven’t really paid a lot of attention.

Theirs is a powerful love and story. I loved watching their journey to the cross and getting to know Jesus.

I appreciated the shame Priscilla felt because of her past secret and I loved her friend’s response to it. I have been privileged in my life to have other believers embrace me and see me as the new creation Jesus has created me to be, just like Priscilla.

If you like Biblical fiction you are sure to enjoy Tessa’s newest release.

Visit Tessa here.

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 through Netgalley.com. All opinions are my own. 

 

Lady of a Thousand Treasure by Sandra Byrd October 30, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:03 am
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About:

Miss Eleanor Sheffield is a talented evaluator of antiquities, trained to know the difference between a genuine artifact and a fraud. But with her father’s passing and her uncle’s decline into dementia, the family business is at risk. In the Victorian era, unmarried Eleanor cannot run Sheffield Brothers alone.

The death of a longtime client, Baron Lydney, offers an unexpected complication when Eleanor is appointed the temporary trustee of the baron’s legendary collection. She must choose whether to donate the priceless treasures to a museum or allow them to pass to the baron’s only living son, Harry—the man who broke Eleanor’s heart.

Eleanor distrusts the baron’s motives and her own ability to be unbiased regarding Harry’s future. Harry claims to still love her and Eleanor yearns to believe him, but his mysterious comments and actions fuel her doubts. When she learns an Italian beauty accompanied him on his return to England, her lingering hope for a future with Harry dims.

With the threat of debtor’s prison closing in, Eleanor knows that donating the baron’s collection would win her favor among potential clients, saving Sheffield Brothers. But the more time she spends with Harry, the more her faith in him grows. Might Harry be worthy of his inheritance, and her heart, after all? As pressures mount and time runs out, Eleanor must decide whom she can trust—who in her life is false or true, brass or gold—and what is meant to be treasured.

My thoughts:

I think this might be the first book by Sandra I have read. She has been on my list to read for years.

She has created a story that will capture from the first pages and pull you into Eleanor’s world and confusion. Who can she trust? I wanted her to be able to trust Harry but there were many unanswered questions that made the reader wonder what was going on with him.

The other cast of characters were engaging and intriguing as well. I enjoyed them all.

A wonderful and engaging read.

Visit Sandra here. 

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. All opinions are my own. 

 

Review and Giveaway: Thief of Corinth by Tessa Afshar August 28, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 1:10 am
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About:

First-century Corinth is a city teeming with commerce and charm. It’s also filled with danger and corruption-the perfect setting for Ariadne’s greatest adventure.

After years spent living with her mother and oppressive grandfather in Athens, Ariadne runs away to her father’s home in Corinth, only to discover the perilous secret that destroyed his marriage: though a Greek of high birth, Galenos is the infamous thief who has been robbing the city’s corrupt of their ill-gotten gains.

Desperate to keep him safe, Ariadne risks her good name, her freedom, and the love of the man she adores to become her father’s apprentice. As her unusual athletic ability leads her into dangerous exploits, Ariadne discovers that she secretly revels in playing with fire. But when the wrong person discovers their secret, Ariadne and her father find their future-and very lives-hanging in the balance.

When they befriend a Jewish rabbi named Paul, they realize that his radical message challenges everything they’ve fought to build, yet offers something neither dared hope for.

My thoughts and giveaway:

This one took me a little bit to get into. The first chapter definitely hooked me but I waned a little bit for a few chapters and then found myself fully invested.

The thing that really struck me about this book was what it must have been like to hear about Jesus for the first time. I think we take that for granted. We know about Jesus, we can read His Word.

But the people in this story had never heard about Jesus, it was all fresh and new, this idea of unconditional love.

This is another wonderful story by Tessa, she did not disappoint.

Visit Tessa here.

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

Leave a comment by September 10th for your chance to win a copy. One winner will be chosen by random.org. (U.S. addresses only. I will not replace books lost or damaged in the mail.)

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

 

Review and Giveaway: Engraved on the Heart by Tara Johnson July 24, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 6:20 pm
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About:

Reluctant debutante Keziah Montgomery lives beneath the weighty expectations of her staunch Confederate family, forced to keep her epilepsy secret for fear of a scandal. As the tensions of the Civil War arrive on their doorstep in Savannah, Keziah sees little cause for balls and courting. Despite her discomfort, she cannot imagine an escape from her familial confines—until her old schoolmate Micah shows her a life-changing truth that sets her feet on a new path . . . as a conductor in the Underground Railroad.

Dr. Micah Greyson never hesitates to answer the call of duty, no matter how dangerous, until the enchanting Keziah walks back into his life and turns his well-ordered plans upside down. Torn between the life he has always known in Savannah and the fight for abolition, Micah struggles to discern God’s plan amid such turbulent times.

Battling an angry fiancé, a war-tattered brother, bounty hunters, and their own personal demons, Keziah and Micah must decide if true love is worth the price . . . and if they are strong enough to survive the unyielding pain of war.

My thoughts and giveaway:

What a beautiful cover. This book drew me in just by looking at it.

I have never read anything by Tara before but I will gladly do so again.

I loved this sneek peek at the Underground Railroad. Keziah’s heart for others was so strong.

Micah is a stubborn man who has the some kind heart as Keziah but holds back his own feelings for Keziah.

Keziah’s family frustrated me to no end. But the author did a wonderful job developing these characters as well.

I would say it was about half way through the book before I felt totally invested but then I couldn’t put it down and had to see how it would all work out.

If you like books set int he civil war era I have no doubt you will enjoy this book.

Visit Tara here.

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

Leave a comment by July 31st for your chance to win a copy of this book. One winner will be chosen by random.org. (U.S. addresses only. I will not replace books lost or damaged in the mail.)

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

 

The Road to Magnolia Glen by Pam Hillman July 20, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 1:42 am
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About:

1792, Natchez Trace, MS
Bitter since his eldest brother abandoned their family in Ireland, Quinn O’Shea travels to Natchez, Mississippi, ready to shuck the weight of his duty and set off on an adventure of his own. It’s time Connor, as head of the family, took responsibility for their younger siblings. While aboard ship, a run-in with three Irish sisters lands Quinn in the role of reluctant savior. Though it may delay his plans, he cannot abandon the Young sisters, especially the tenacious yet kind Kiera.

Upon arriving in the colonies, Kiera Young prepares to meet her intended and begin her new life. But she soon discovers the marriage her brother-in-law arranged was never meant to be, and a far more sinister deal was negotiated for her and her sisters.

Quinn offers to escort his charges safely to Breeze Hill Plantation and his brother’s care, fully intending to seek his freedom elsewhere. But the longer he remains, the greater his feelings toward Kiera grow and the more he comes to realize true freedom might be found in sacrifice.

Includes discussion questions.

My thoughts:

This was a great second book in this series.

Kiera is a strong character, determined to do what is needed to keep her sisters safe.

Quinn is a wonderfully stubborn hero who has his plans while God has another.

I could easily see the Genesis 5020 stories in the character’s lives. What the enemy could have used for harm God uses for good.

I also enjoyed meeting up with characters from the first book…well, not all the characters. Some of them are truly evil.

I kept waiting for something bad to happen, you knew it was coming it was just a matter of time.

I did feel the first almost kiss was a bit rushed. I didn’t feel the moment at all. But when it came time for the actual kiss, that one I felt was the right timing.

Have no fear if you haven’t read the first book, you can still thoroughly enjoy this one.

Visit Pam here.

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 through Netgalley.com. All opinions are my own. 

 

The Hidden Side by Heidi Chiavaroli May 11, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:53 am
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About:

New York, 2016
Natalie Abbott offers answers for hurting listeners on her popular radio program. But she struggles to connect with her teenagers, with her daughter in an unhealthy relationship and her son uncommunicative and isolated. When one member of the family commits an unspeakable act, Natalie is forced to uncover who she truly is under the façade of her radio persona.

New York, 1776
Mercy Howard is shocked when her fiancé, Nathan Hale, is arrested and hanged as a spy. When she’s asked to join the revolutionary spy ring in Manhattan, she sees an opportunity to avenge Nathan’s death. But keeping her true loyalties hidden grows increasingly harder as the charming Major John Andre of the King’s Army becomes more to her than a target for intelligence.

Mercy’s journals comfort Natalie from across the centuries as both women struggle with their own secrets and shame, wondering how deep God’s mercy extends.

My thoughts:

Wow. This is one of the best books I have read recently. So good.

The thing is this book wasn’t what I accepted at all…it was so much better.

I don’t even know where to begin. I could so relate to Natalie as a mom. Worried about her kids, thinking she was over reacting.

Maelynn, Natalies’ daughter, is just a typical teenager, trying to fit in and be “cool”, yet questioning herself all of the time.

Mercy is a sympathetic, strong character.

All of these women have things to hide from the world.

I love the honesty of Natalie questioning God, so true to life. Life is messy and this book gets messy. I couldn’t put this one down. It is not your typical book at all, it spoke to my mama heart very deeply.

Visit Heidi here.

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 through Netgalley.com. All opinions are my own. 

 

Review and Giveaway: Things I Never Told You by Beth Vogt May 7, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:19 pm
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About:

It’s been ten years since Payton Thatcher’s twin sister died in an accident, leaving the entire family to cope in whatever ways they could. No longer half of a pair, Payton reinvents herself as a partner in a successful party-planning business and is doing just fine—as long as she manages to hold her memories and her family at arm’s length.

But with her middle sister Jillian’s engagement, Payton’s party-planning skills are called into action. Which means working alongside her opinionated oldest sister, Johanna, who always seems ready for a fight. They can only hope that a wedding might be just the occasion to heal the resentment and jealousy that divides them . . . until a frightening diagnosis threatens Jillian’s plans and her future. As old wounds are reopened and the family faces the possibility of another tragedy, the Thatchers must decide if they will pull together or be driven further apart.

My Thoughts and Giveaway:

This book took me to a place deep in my heart. This relationship between sisters can be tough. My sister and I have had our ups and downs.

Payton is so guarded, I just wanted her to know Jesus. Her whole family needed Jesus (don’t we all). I knew that was the answer for all of them.

The pain of what Jillian needs to deal with as her wedding approaches is something all of us fear, at least a little bit. My heart broke for her.

Beth has penned a beautifully written story that will touch the heart of her readers.

Visit Beth here. 

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

Leave a comment by May 21st for your chance to win a copy of this book. One winner will be chosen by random.org. (U.S. addresses only. I will not replace books lost or damaged in the mail.)

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

 

The Kremlin Conspiracy by Joel C. Rosenberg April 30, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 11:33 pm
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About:

New York Times bestselling author Joel C. Rosenberg returns with a high-stakes political thriller set in Russia.

Everything he learned to protect our president, he must use to take out theirs.

With an American president distracted by growing tensions in North Korea and Iran, an ominous new threat is emerging in Moscow. A czar is rising in the Kremlin, a Russian president feverishly consolidating power, silencing his opposition, and plotting a brazen and lightning-fast military strike that could rupture the NATO alliance and bring Washington and Moscow to the brink of nuclear war. But in his blind spot is the former U.S. Secret Service agent, Marcus Ryker, trained to protect but ready to kill to save his country.

My thoughts:

What a great book.

The scariest part of this book is that it could be real. So many of the events have taken place and could take place.

The deception, the hurt, the wounds, all of this will draw you into the story. Some parts of the story drew me in more than others but overall I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

I found myself having sympathy for both Marcus and Oleg and I wondered how their lives would intersect and what would happen.

If you enjoy political thrillers I am sure you will like this one.

Visit Joel here.

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. 

 

The Saturday Night Supper Club by Carla Laureano February 5, 2018

Filed under: Book Reviews — Melissa Finnegan @ 10:11 pm
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About:

Denver chef Rachel Bishop has accomplished everything she’s dreamed and some things she never dared hope, like winning a James Beard award and heading up her own fine-dining restaurant. But when a targeted smear campaign causes her to be pushed out of the business by her partners, she vows to do whatever it takes to get her life back … even if that means joining forces with the man who inadvertently set the disaster in motion.

Essayist Alex Kanin never imagined his pointed editorial would go viral. Ironically, his attempt to highlight the pitfalls of online criticism has the opposite effect: it revives his own flagging career by destroying that of a perfect stranger. Plagued by guilt-fueled writer’s block, Alex vows to do whatever he can to repair the damage. He just doesn’t expect his interest in the beautiful chef to turn personal.

Alex agrees to help rebuild Rachel’s tarnished image by offering his connections and his home to host an exclusive pop-up dinner party targeted to Denver’s most influential citizens: the Saturday Night Supper Club. As they work together to make the project a success, Rachel begins to realize Alex is not the unfeeling opportunist she once thought he was, and that perhaps there’s life–and love–outside the pressure-cooker of her chosen career. But can she give up her lifelong goals without losing her identity as well?

My thoughts:

I have thoroughly enjoyed every book I have read by Carla. Her books just come to life and the characters seem so real to me. I can feel their emotions. This book was no exception.

Rachel is thrown into a situation she never asked for. Alex threw her into the situation without really meaning to and he will do whatever it takes to make it up to her. He didn’t mean to fall for her in the process.

Overall, this is a very well written book that I highly recommend if you are looking for a good contemporary romance.

Visit Carla here.

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 my through Netgalley.com. All opinions are my own.