Thursday, December 29, 2016

Let the adventure begin


What a glorious way to let your imagination run wild.  From the first page this is what a book should look like.  A place you want to visit over and over.

Happy Reading,

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Quote

Not all those who wander are lost.

– J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

I love that J.R.R. wanted to remind us that sometimes 
we need to wander off to find ourselves.

Monday, December 26, 2016

New Releases - Dec. 19 - 24

Dear Readers,

I did get a few new titles last week.  All of them make a great way to finish off the 'old' year.   I will quickly add these to my TBR pile.  Well the ones I haven't already read. :-)

Happy Reading,

Amish Weddings - Leslie Gould - #3 Neighbors of Lancaster County -Gregarious Rose Lehman, who's always the life of the Amish youth singings, is determined to marry the bishop's son, Reuben Byler--until the handsome Army buddy of her future brother-in-law shows up in Lancaster County. In comparison to Trevor, Reuben seems downright boring. Trevor shares Rose's sense of fun and adventure, and her easygoing disposition.

The Mark of the King - Jocelyn Green -After the death of her client, midwife Julianne Chevalier is imprisoned and branded, marking her as a criminal beyond redemption. Hoping to reunite with her brother, a soldier, she trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling French colony of Louisiana. The price of her transport, however, is a forced marriage to a fellow convict. 

A Moonbow Night - Laura Frantz -  After fleeing Virginia, Temperance Tucker and her family established an inn along the Shawnee River. It's a welcome way station for settlers and frontiersmen traveling through the wild Cumberland region of Kentucke--men like Sion Morgan, a Virginia surveyor who arrives at the inn with his crew, looking for an experienced guide.

An Uncommon Courtship - Kristi Ann Hunter - #3 Hawthorne House -  Lord Trent Hawthorne couldn't be happier he is not the duke in the family. Free to manage his small estate and take his time discovering the life he wants to lead, he has grand plans of someday wooing and falling in love with the woman of his choice. When he finds himself honor bound to marry a woman he barely knows, his dream of a loving marriage like his parents' seems lost forever.

Purgatory Road - Samuel Parker -When a day trip out of Las Vegas with his wife takes a turn for the worse, Jack is sure he has the ability to get them home. But he has driven into something far beyond reason.  Rescue comes in the form of a desert hermit, but hope fades as the couple comes to realize that the nomad has no intention of letting them leave. A chance encounter with a kidnapped runaway and her crazed abductor leads them all farther into the wilderness--and closer to the cold brutality that isolation brings. 

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Samuel Parker

Dear Readers, 
What if the God became a disgruntled old man living in the desert?  What if the devil was bored with God's seeming indifference to mankind?  How far would he go to get God involved with the world again?  
Purgatory Road by Samuel Parker explores these questions and so many more.  Several of which I didn't even think to ask myself.  
Jack and Laura have grown apart.  His drive to be better, to succeed, to have it all, has left her feeling like she never matters to Jack.  A short trip to Las Vegas is supposed to bring the magic back.  But all it does is make their differences more glaring as Jack can't seem to relax and can't wait to get home.  When he suggests a short sightseeing trip to the desert, Laura figures it can't hurt and maybe they can talk.  What happens next, neither one of them ever planned on.  
Molly just wants to be on her own.  She feels trapped at home, sure the confines of her parents' rules will kill her if she doesn't get out soon.  Off into the world she goes, feeling brave and strong.  What she finds instead is a man who doesn't really care who she is as long as she fulfills his plans.  
Paths cross, stories meet and things happen.  Things that will leave you a bit unsettled.  Things that will make you wonder how you would respond in the same situation.  Things that may even make you ask, how is God trying to get my attention?
I have heard this book described a couple different ways.  It was described as The Shack only scarier, and as a new Frank Peretti style book.  To me it fits either and yet stands completely on its own.  It doesn't seek to mirror either author, Samuel just brings up a book that will not leave you the same.
Just remember what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.  Or so the saying goes. 
Happy Reading, 

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Monday, December 19, 2016

New Releases - December 11 - 16

Dear Readers,

This little post is actually directed at any and all publishing houses.  I know that sales have been difficult this past year.  There is one month out of the year that if you released new fiction books they are the easiest to sell.  Why you ask?  Well because of befuddled shopper is looking for a new book for the reader on their list.  One their reader hasn't read yet.  Almost any book would do.  But it has to be new and if it comes highly recommended all the better.

What is this magical month?  December.  Shoppers really are looking for that special book.  They know that their readers wants something wonderful and new.  But alas the shelves don't have that many new books.  So here is my plea, new fiction books in December are an easy sell, but I can't sell what you don't put in my hands.

Thank you for listening and maybe we will have better luck next year,

Happy Reading,

The Returning - Rachelle Dekker - #3 The Seer Novels - Twenty years have passed since Carrington and Remko Brant’s baby, Elise, was kidnapped and they were forced to leave her captive in the Authority City. Though they fled with the Seers far from Authority reach, they’ve never given up hope of rescuing their daughter from the man who betrayed them. Now Authority President, he’s ushered the city into a new era of “peace”―one where the Scientist Roth Reynard’s Genesis Serum has eradicated all memory of emotion or rebellion.

Friday, December 16, 2016

interesting Part 2

Dear Readers, 

I found some very interesting facts about books and readers.  

Bibliosmia‘ is the enjoyment of the smell of old books.

Ford Madox Ford recommended that readers judge a new book, not by its first page, but by its 99th, the better to gauge the book’s quality.

Only 2% of the 1.2 million different books sold in the US in 2004 sold more than 5,000 copies.

The word ‘shrine’ comes from the Latin scrinium meaning ‘chest for books’.

The people of India are the world’s most average readers. On average, an individual will spend around 10.7 hours a week just reading!

Happy Reading, 

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Michele Phoenix

Dear Readers,

Okay okay okay it is so hard to write a review for a book that I want to tell you everything about and yet can tell you nothing.  Michele Phoenix's newest release In Silence and Storm is a book that once you get finished reading it you want to find someone else who has read it so you can have a discussion about it.  This book will not leave me alone even though I have finished over a week ago.

Lauren and Sam new that wanted to do mission work and yet Lauren thought that had passed them by once they started their family and their life seemed perfect.  But the day Sam comes home with the pamphlets for Nepal, Laura knows their lives will never be the same.

Two years after arriving in Nepal their family has come to a crisis.  Sam is content with his life of mission work, but Lauren and their son Ryan are dying. What choices will be made when it all comes to a head.

I know this book focuses on mission work and the choices that are made and lives that are sacrificed for the work, but I also think it is a reminder for us all when we make life changing choices with out consulting the rest of our family. How sometimes we can think things are of God and yet we ignore all the signpost along the way that tell us otherwise.

This is one of those type of books that each reader is going to get something very different out of the story.  Michele is very good at writing books driven by huge issues and then not giving us pat answers to the problems.  I will be the first to tell you that the book did not end the way I thought it would, which I was very glad for.  But I also am going to be the first to say, it ended is a very good way.

Happy Reading,

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

New Release - The Pattern Artist - Nancy Moser

New Release - The Pattern Artist - Nancy Moser 

Born into a life of hard work, English housemaid Annie Wood arrives in New York City in 1911 with her wealthy mistress. Wide-eyed with the possibilities America has to offer, Annie wonders if there’s more for her than a life of service. Annie chooses to risk everything, taps into courage she never knew she had, and goes off on her own, finding employment in the sewing department at Macy’s. 

While at Macy’s Annie catches the eye of a salesman at the Butterick Pattern Company. Through determination, hard work, and God’s leading, Annie discovers a hidden gift: she is a talented fashion designer—a pattern artist of the highest degree. As she runs from ghosts of the past and focuses on the future, Annie enters a creative world that takes her to the fashion houses of Paris and into a life of adventure, purpose, and love.

Monday, December 12, 2016

New Releases - December 5 - 10

Dear Readers,

December is a lean time for new titles to hit the shelves.  I really just don't understand why.  Christmas is a time of year when people love to buy books for others.  How much easier is it for those buying gifts for their favorite reader if the clerk in the store can say "Yes this book is brand new.  Arrived this week.  I know your reader has not read this book yet."

Thankfully we do get a few and the two titles we have here are by two favorite authors. They quickly were added to the TBR pile.

Happy Reading

Of Stillness and Storm - Michele' Phoenix - It took Lauren and her husband ten years to achieve their dream—reaching primitive tribes in remote regions of Nepal. But while Sam treks into the Himalayas for weeks at a time, finding passion and purpose in his work among the needy, Lauren and Ryan stay behind, their daily reality more taxing than inspiring. For them, what started as a calling begins to feel like the family’s undoing.

The Pattern Artist - Nancy Moser -  English housemaid Annie Wood arrives in New York City in 1911 with her wealthy mistress.  Annie chooses to risk everything, taps into courage she never knew she had, and goes off on her own, finding employment in the sewing department at Macy’s. While at Macy’s Annie catches the eye of a salesman at the Butterick Pattern Company. Through determination, hard work, and God’s leading, Annie discovers a hidden gift: she is a talented fashion designer—a pattern artist of the highest degree.  Annie enters a creative world that takes her to the fashion houses of Paris and into a life of adventure, purpose, and love

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

New Release - Conspiracy of Silence - Ronie Kendig

Conspiracy of Silence - Ronie Kendig - #1 The Tox Files 

Conspiracy+of+SilenceFour years after a tragic mission decimated his career and his team, Cole "Tox" Russell is persona non grata to the United States. And that's fine--he just wants to be left alone. But when a dormant, centuries-old disease is unleashed, Tox is lured back into action.

Partnered with FBI agent Kasey Cortes, Tox has to pull together a team to begin a globe-spanning
 search for answers--and a cure. As their quest leads them from continent to continent, it slowly becomes clear they're not just fighting a plague--but battling against an ancient secret society whose true goals remain hidden.

With time running out and opposition growing on every side, the key to everything may rest in an antique codex, the Crown of Jerusalem--but will Tox and his team be able to trust each other enough to break this century-spanning conspiracy of silence?

Monday, December 5, 2016

Christmas Titles

Dear Readers,

Christmas titles for the 2017 season have been hopping off the shelves here at the store.  I don't know if it is because around here are not having tradition December weather (no snow) or just because we have so many good authors writing Christmas books this year.  For whatever reason I am glad to share a few of the new titles with you.

Happy Reading,


God Bless Us Every One - Eva Maria Everson -Charlene Dixon—called Charlie by family and friends—is devastated at the recent loss of her job. For the last five years, the twenty-seven-year-old has blossomed as the activities director of an exclusive all-girls school. But when a misunderstanding with the headmistress leads to a pink slip right before the holidays, Charlie packs up her dreams and returns to her grandmother, Sis, who raised Charlie as her own in the mountains of North Carolina.

The Christmas Secret - Wanda Brunstetter -  A poignant historical story of a couple on the threshold of marriage who are suddenly pulled apart. Elizabeth Canning discovers an awful secret in her deceased mother’s diary. Believing her chances for a happy marriage are spoiled, she leaves her fiancĂ© a letter and flees town. Anticipating a Christmas Eve wedding with Elizabeth, David Stinner is confused by her letter and desperate to find her. Can David root out the truth about the past and bring back his bride? Or is the truth destined to bring an ultimate end to their romance?

Kissing Father Christmas - Robin Jones Gunn - Anna's first visit to Carlton Heath in England was last May for the wedding of her cousin Ian to Miranda. The beautiful event ended with a dance under the stars and Anna receiving an unexpected kiss from Peter, the groomsman who caught her eye and now holds her heart. Now, at the invitation of family and friends, Anna is returning to Carlton Heath for Christmas. She has Peter's recent email to fill her with assurance that he's looking forward to seeing her again as well. More than his brief words, though, the vivid memory of their unforgettable kiss provides a promise of more to come 

The Baxter Family Christmas - Karen Kingsbury - Two years have passed since the terrible car accident that took the life of John Baxter’s daughter, Erin, her husband and three of their four daughters. Prompted by grief, and missing his daughter, John has invited a stranger for Christmas Eve dinner—Kendra Bryant, the transplant recipient who now has Erin’s heart.
In light of their father’s idea, Ashley and her brother Luke don’t think it’s right. They want to protect their ten-year-old niece, Amy—the only surviving member of the accident. But John is determined and believes meeting this woman is something his deceased daughter would want.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Gift buying

Dear Readers,

As if any of us needed an excuse to give a book as a gift.

Happy Reading,

P.S.  These can also be great hints as to why you want/need a book off your wish list.



Books Makes the Best Gifts







Gift Giving Season is now upon us and, while we might be a little biased, we think books make the best gifts and here's 5 reasons why!


1. They're the gift that keeps on giving. People love to re-read their favorite books and a pretty book doubles as decoration!


2. They won't break the bank and don't we all love that?


3. You have thousands upon thousands of options to choose from. At first that might sound scary, but if the person is an old soul, maybe a classic is just the trick. Is your friend into what's new? There's a New York Times Bestseller for that. Into sports? We have books for that too.


4. They can take this gift anywhere! To the beach, on a plane, on a train or on a cozy couch in the house.


5. You will help your friend or family member relax. Books have a way of doing that. As C.S. Lewis once said, "We read to know we are not alone."


"A book is a gift you can open again and again."

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Fredrick Backman

Dear Readers,

I meet a very interesting man this past week.  He was not always the most pleasant of men.  He is kind of set in his ways and had just lost his wife 6 months ago.  Most of his neighbors had no idea who he was.  He was 'retired' from his job.  He was having a hard time finding a reason to go on.

If this sound familiar to you, you have probably already meet Ove in Fredrick Backman's delightful book, A Man called Ove.  I know I am way behind in reading this little book, but am so glad I had the chance to get to know and fall in love with him.

There really isn't much to this book.  It is a quirky, funny, compelling story about a man who has given up on life and yet seems to be, as one of the characters says, "very bad at dying."  In a very gentle way, this book reminded me that I should get to know someone's story before I make judgements on who they are and why the act the way they do.

Not only did those who surrounded Ove in the neighborhood make those judgements about him, he actually was guilty of it also.  No preaching, no making the character feel bad because of those choices, Fredrick just gently lead us in the direction we should have gone while make the judgement.

As I listened to this book back and forth to work this week, it kept reminding me that I know people like Ove and I need to make sure I reach out to them.  It was a refreshing way to be reminded.  No judgements, just corrections in my thinking. We just never know when we will make a huge difference in one person's life.

Happy Reading,

P.S.  Yes there is language in the book.  To be honest it fit Ove's character so well I had a hard time being offended by it.  Besides the laughter it caused really made it all the more entertaining.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Melody Carlson

Dear Reader, 

Melody Carlson Christmas books are a tradition in many families.  Readers eagerly wait to see what delightful tale she is going to share with us.  One grandmother shared with me that she gets her hands on a copy as soon as possible so she can get it read more than once and then when her family gathers together for a Christmas weekend, she reads a bit each night.  The year she thought she would try something new, there was so many protest she never did that again.  

I love Christmas books for that reason alone, they have a way of bringing people together. 

Cover ArtHappy Reading, 

The Christmas Angel Project - Melody Carlson

Abby Wentworth is the glue that holds her book club together. So when she unexpectedly passes away on the cusp of the Christmas season, the rest of the women in the group are stunned, saddened, and sure that, without her, the group can't continue.

They gather "one last time" to open gifts Abby left behind, little knowing how it will change each of their lives--forever.

Monday, November 28, 2016

New Releases - November 21-26

Dear Readers,

The Holidays are upon us.  I am not ready, but that doesn't really matter does it.  :-)   Hopefully you are more prepared as it turns out that Christmas is less than a month away.  Yikes!!

Happy Reading,

Conspiracy of Silence - Ronie Kendig - #1 The Tox Files - Four years after a tragic mission decimated his career and his team, Cole "Tox" Russell is persona non grata to the United States. And that's fine--he just wants to be left alone. But when a dormant, centuries-old disease is unleashed, Tox is lured back into action.

Beast - Chawa Schroeder - For as long as Beast can remember, she has lived among her master's dogs. With them she sleeps. With them she eats. With them she fights and struggles to survive. But through hunger and cold she dreams of one day becoming her master's favorite, earning bones with meat and a place beside the fire.When her pack scatters after a surprise raid, Beast must defend herself against slavers, hunting down the loners. They are so strong, and she is only a beast . . . or is she?

The Time Before you Die - Lucy Beckett - A Novel of the Reformation - A powerful, beautifully written novel of loss, finding and being found, set in a very traumatic time in European history--the Protestant Reformation. The turbulent sixteenth century saw the disintegration of medieval Christendom as it was split into sovereign states. This was particularly destructive in Tudor England, where rapid switches in government policy and religious persecution shattered the lives of many.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Thanksgiving fun

Dear Readers,

Just incase you did not have enough turkey yesterday here are some fun facts for your Black Friday enjoyment.

Happy Reading,

Thanksgiving Fun 
  • Your tax dollars at work: The first turkeys to earn a trip to Disney World were named May and Flower.  After being pardoned by President George W. Bush, they were flown to Florida to serve as honorary grand marshals in the Disney World Thanksgiving parade.
  • The first cat balloon to appear in the Macy's Thanksgiving parade was Felix the cat.  (Sorry Garfield)
  • File this under things you didn't need to know: Black Friday isn't just for shopping.  It's also the busiest day for Roto-Rooter.
  • The first Thanksgiving football game was in 1876.  It was  not televised.
  • Buckles didn't appear on pilgrim hats until the nineteenth century.
  • Don't ever accuse a female turkey of gobbling.  Only males gobble.  Females cackle.
  • What?  No green bean casserole? Not only were pilgrims deprived of this Campbell soup standard, they also missed out on turkey and cranberries. Bummer.
  • This should go over big: Tired of guests texting during Thanksgiving dinner?  A cell lock-up might be the answer. It's a "jail" for phones and can be purchased on line.
 

What does a turkey eat on Thanksgiving?  Nothing.  It's already stuffed.
     

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thanksgiving


Dear Readers,

One of the local church librarians shared her display for Thanksgiving she made.
I love it and may think of making one myself.  Or maybe I should just ask her to make me one. :-) 

Happy Reading, 

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

New Release - The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill - Julie Klassen

The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill - Julie Klassen - #1 Tales of Ivy Hill 

Welcome to the English village of Ivy Hill, where friendships thrive, romance blossoms, and mysteries await. . . .
The lifeblood of the village of Ivy Hill is its coaching inn, The Bell. When the innkeeper dies suddenly, his genteel wife, Jane Bell, becomes the reluctant landlady. Jane has no idea how to manage a business, but with the town's livelihood at stake and a large loan due, she must quickly find a way to save the inn.

Despite their strained relationship, Jane turns to her resentful mother-in-law, Thora, for help. Formerly mistress of The Bell, Thora is struggling to overcome her losses and find purpose for the future. As she works with Jane, two men from her past vie for her attention, but Thora has promised herself never to marry again. Will one of them convince her to embrace a second chance at love?

As pressure mounts from the bank, Jane employs new methods, and puzzles over the intentions of several men who seem to have a vested interest in the place, including a mysterious newcomer with secret plans of his own. With the help of friends old and new, can Jane restore life to the inn, and to her empty heart as well?

Monday, November 21, 2016

New Releases - November 14-19

Dear Readers,

As I put the finishing touches on this post the snow has started to fall here in Michigan.  Which means winter reading rules apply.  Of course they are very similar to the summer reading rules, you just do them inside.

Happy Reading,

Healing of the Heart - Loree Lough - #3 Secrets of Sterling Street -   When Ruby McCoy arrives in Fairplay, her ornate carriage is followed by an entourage who heft steamer trunks, hatboxes, and traveling bags into the hotel...where she has booked the entire second floor. Upon her notorious gangster father's death, the now–wealthy Ruby, hiding under her mother's maiden name, set out to right her father's wrongs. Ruby is determined to spend every penny of the inherited "blood money" on those who paid the price for her father's crimes. 

For the Record - Regina Jennings - Betsy Huckabee might be a small-town girl, but she has big-city dreams. Writing for her uncle's newspaper will never lead to independence, and the bigger newspapers don't seem interested in the Hart County news. Trying a new approach, Betsy pens a romanticized serial for the ladies' pages, and the new deputy provides the perfect inspiration for her submissions. She'd be horrified if he read her breathless descriptions of him, but these articles are for a newspaper far away. No one in Pine Gap will ever know.

The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill - Julie Klassen - #1Tales from Ivy Hill - The lifeblood of the Wiltshire village of Ivy Hill is its coaching inn, The Bell. But when the innkeeper dies suddenly, his genteel wife, Jane Bell, becomes the reluctant owner. Jane has no notion of how to run a business. However, with the town's livelihood at stake and a large loan due, she must find a way to bring new life to the inn. 

Friday, November 18, 2016

Friday Funnies

Okay so this made me laugh right out loud. 


 :

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Irma Joubert

Dear Readers,

Irma Joubert rose quickly to one of the authors that is a must read with her book The Girl From the Train.  She has solidified that place with her second - to English- book Child of the River.  Her style of writing is not one that I would recommend for other authors, but is sure works for her.

Child of the River is set during the time in South Africa that caused the rise of Apartheid.  We meet Persomi, she is a quiet child, that deals with difficult situations by running away to "her" mountain.  She is the middle child of a dirt poor sharecropper family.  They survive on what they can scratch out of the unforgiving land and what they can beg from the main house.  Persomi's father takes any money that is earned and pours it down his throat.  Nothing about her life is easy.

When her family comes under the scrutiny of the welfare people and her small world falls apart, Persomi's life is changed forever.  What opens up instead is a world at large.  She suddenly has a future that she never dreamed of and isn't sure she can handle.

I know personally it took a while for me to warm up to Persomi, but as I learned her story I understood her more and more.  I find myself rooting for her in many different situations that life hands her.  She doesn't always make the right decisions, but works with what she knows and understands.  We get to watch her grow and learn about herself and others and become a strong women because of it.

Because of the time of history this book is set in, it made for an interesting to time to be reading it.  I was reading just before the election and was finishing it as the election was finishing up.  I am not going to comment on the winners or losers in the election, but this book reminded me that as citizens we must stand in the gap between a government who is overstepping and others who are not able to defend themselves.

A very interesting read, one that will not leave you comfortable with how easy it was for people to join a bandwagon movement even when they knew it was wrong.  I can hardly wait until Irma's next book releases.

Happy Reading,

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

New Release - Barefoot - Sharon Garlough Brown

Barefoot - Sharon Garlough Brown

BarefootThe spiritual journey takes unexpected turns for the women of Sensible Shoes in this third book of the series, continuing on from the events of Two Steps Forward. Having been challenged to persevere in hope, can they now embrace the joy of complete surrender?

Mara: With two boys at home and a divorce on the way, can she let go of her resentment and bitterness and find a rhythm of grace in her "new normal"?

Hannah: With Nathan by her side, can she let go of expectations―and even her reputation―as she charts a new course?

Charissa: As her approaching due date threatens to collide with new professional opportunities, can she let go of her need for control and embrace the unknown future with trust?

Meg: With disappointment over broken relationships and unfulfilled dreams, can she let go of her fear and worry in the face of even greater challenges that lie ahead?


Join the women of the Sensible Shoes Club in a poignant story that reveals the joy that comes from laying our lives at the feet of God and standing barefoot on holy ground.Garlough Brown

Monday, November 14, 2016

New Releases - November 7 - 12

Dear Readers,

This list makes it hard to decide which one to read first.  All three books are by favorite authors and I am not sure which to read first.  Maybe I will just read all three at once. 

Happy Reading,


Barefoot - Sharon Garlough Brown - #3 in the Sensible Shoes Series - Mara: With two boys at home and a divorce on the way, can she let go of her resentment and bitterness and find a rhythm of grace in her "new normal"? Hannah: With Nathan by her side, can she let go of expectations―and even her reputation―as she charts a new course?Charissa: As her approaching due date threatens to collide with new professional opportunities, can she let go of her need for control and embrace the unknown future with trust? Meg: With disappointment over broken relationships and unfulfilled dreams, can she let go of her fear and worry in the face of even greater challenges that lie ahead? 

Shadow of the Storm - Connilyn Cossette - Out from Egypt #2 - Having escaped Egypt with the other Hebrews during the Exodus, Shira is now living in freedom at the foot of Mt. Sinai, upon which rests the fiery glowing Cloud containing the shekinah glory of God. When the people disobey Yahweh and build a golden idol, the ensuing chaos gives Shira an unexpected opportunity to learn the arts of midwifery. Although her mother wishes for her to continue in the family weaving trade, Shira's gifts shine brightest when she assists with deliveries. In defiance of her mother, Shira pursues her heart's calling to become an apprentice midwife.

Where Two Hearts Meet - Liz Johnson - Prince Edward Island Dreams #2 - In her kitchen at the Red Door Inn, executive chef Caden Holt is calm, collected, and competent. But when her boss asks her to show off their beautiful island to impress a visiting travel writer and save the inn, Caden is forced to face a world much bigger than her kitchen--and a man who makes her wish she was beautiful.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Holy Ground

Dear Readers,

I have been thinking about this post for a couple of weeks now.  This past month was a busy month here at Baker Book House.  We not only had our all day librarian event, we hosted several well attended events here.  Ann Voskamp, Lynn Austin, Sharon Garlough Brown to name a few.

I attended and worked at many of the events (I just can't make them all).  While working it is easy to miss those moments that happen during these visits.  I get busy making sure everything (along with every employee in the store) is moving smoothly. I get to visit while people enter the store and find seats.  The excitement builds and the joy on each visitors face brings all of us working energy.

But something struck me over and over again and I was honored to witness it more than once.  I was on Holy Ground during these visits.  God was very present each and every time when the readers and fans of these authors started sharing their stories and how the authors simple words made such a difference in their lives.

Tears were shed, smiles and laughter shared.  But every time I witnessed this I felt over overwhelmingly the present of God.

I am so privileged to work in a bookstore, but a Christian bookstore makes that even better.  I get to witness things that I would never see anywhere else.   Some times it almost brings me to my knees because of what I was able to be part of.  Other times it is just a silly conversation that leaves us participants smiling as we move on to the rest of our day.

Whichever it is I love what I do and prayerfully hope I can continue to walk on this Holy Ground for many years to come.

Happy Reading,




Tuesday, November 8, 2016

New Release - Wild Montana Skies - Susan May Warren

Wild Montana Skies - Susan May Warren - #1 Montana Rescue

Search and rescue pilot Kacey Fairing is home on leave in Mercy Falls, Montana, twelve years after she joined the military to escape the mistakes of her past. With a job waiting for her as the new lead pilot of Peak Rescue in Glacier National Park, Kacey hopes to reconnect with the now-teenage daughter she sees only between deployments. What she doesn't realize is that someone else is also back in town.

Ben King has been building his country music career since the day Kacey shut him out of her life. Now all of that's on hold when his injured father calls him home to help run Peak Rescue until he's fully recovered. It doesn't take long, though, to discover his father's ulterior motives as Kacey Fairing walks into the house and back into his heart.

With Mercy Falls in a state of emergency due to flash floods, Kacey and Ben are forced to work together to save lives. But when floodwaters turn personal, can they put aside the past to save their future?

Monday, November 7, 2016

New Releases - Oct. 31 - November 5

Dear Readers,

Happy November.  Thanksgiving is quickly approaching.  Time to think about what we are thankful for.  Me?  I am always thankful for new and exciting books.

Happy Reading, 

The Candidate – Lis Wiehl/Sebastian Stuart - Mike Ortiz is a dynamic war hero favored to win the White House. Standing by his side is his glamorous and adoring wife, Celeste. But something about this seemingly perfect couple troubles Erica. Is Celeste really who she seems? And most importantly, what really happened in that squalid Al-Qaeda prison where Mike Ortiz spent nine months?

The Captive Heart – Michelle Griep - Proper English governess Eleanor Morgan flees to the colonies to escape the wrath of a brute of an employer. When the Charles Town family she’s to work for never arrives to collect her from the dock, she is forced to settle for the only reputable choice remaining to her—marriage to a man she’s never met.

Wild Montana Skies - Susan May Warren - Montana Rescue #1 - Search and rescue pilot Kacey Fairing is home on leave in Mercy Falls, Montana, twelve years after she joined the military to escape the mistakes of her past. With a job waiting for her as the new lead pilot of Peak Rescue in Glacier National Park, Kacey hopes to reconnect with the now-teenage daughter she sees only between deployments. What she doesn't realize is that someone else is also back in town. 

Operation Zulu Redemption - Ronie Kendig - Zulu, the first all-female special ops team, was set up to take a devastating fall. Fearing for their lives, Zulu members vanished with new identities. Isolated and haunted by their past, they are terrified of being discovered.  Over the years, the brave women of Zulu have begun to hope they might be safe and the terrible tragedy forgotten.  Until two of them are murdered.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Interesting

Dear Readers, 

Here is an interesting fact for you.  I know I am very guilty of bringing books home knowing full well I will not get it read.  Does anyone else have this problem? 

The Japanese word ‘tsundoku’ means ‘buying a load of books and then not getting round to reading them’.

Happy Reading, 

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Katherine Reay

Dear Readers,

Every time I read a Katherine Reay book I feel as if I have gone on a vacation with a favorite family member.  I love meeting her characters and getting to know them and working through the issues that are part of their lives.  Katherine understands that a mini vacation alongside a strong story line is very important to the reader. The Portrait of Emily Price is Katherine's newest release.

I wasn't sure I was going to like Emily Price when I first started reading this book.  She was very worried about making sure everything in her life and in her sister's life was perfect.  She needed to take care of everyone and making sure nothing bad happened and if it did, Emily would fix it.  But trust me, you will begin to understand her more as the book goes on and it is worth the journey to understand her.

Emily is sent to Atlanta to restore a family home and their valuables after a home fire.  She is very very good at her job and has no time for distraction as there are important things to get done and then hurry back to Chicago to make sure her sister finds a job once again.

Chef Benito Vassallo, Ben, is trying very hard to be that distraction.  It seems like love at first site, which is unusual enough for Emily.  But when she accepts his marriage proposal and moves suddenly to Italy.  Where she meets a family very different from her own.

Emily is not perfect and acts like the control freak when she arrives in her new home and that is where she really started to endear herself to me.  I kept trying to get her to stop, but she refused to listen to me.  I don't know what her problem was, I was just trying to help.  Okay okay I understand what I did there.  But that is what is great about this book, you will find yourself doing the same thing.

Also you get to run off to Italy with a dreamy Italian guy and live in a perfectly described village.  For me it was like visiting all over again.  Of course that only made me want to go a visit again. Thank you Katherine for giving me this chance to visit one of my favorite places on earth along side with a new family member.

Happy Reading,

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

New Release - The Cautious Maiden

New Release - The Cautious Maiden - Dawn Crandall 


Violet Hawthorne is beyond mortified when her brother Ezra turns their deceased parents' New England country inn into a brothel to accommodate the nearby lumberjacks; but when Violet's own reputation is compromised, the inn becomes the least of her worries.


 In an effort to salvage her good name, Violet is forced into an engagement with a taciturn acquaintance; Vance Everstone. 

As she prepares for a society wedding, Violet learns that her brother had staked her hand in marriage in a heated poker game with the unsavory Rowen Steele, and Ezra had lost. Now Rowen is determined to cash in on his IOU. With danger stalking her and a new fiance who hides both his emotion and his past, Violet must decide who to trust; and who to leave behind.

Monday, October 31, 2016

New Releases - October 24 - 29

Dear Readers,
Image result for halloween clip art

Happy Reading, 


A Sister’s Wish – Shelley Shepherd Gray - #3 The Charmed Amish Life - Amelia Kinsinger is the perfect Amish woman—at least according to her neighbors. And while Amelia takes pride in her role as homemaker, she’s also harboring a secret: She’s been in love with bad boy Simon Hochstetler for as long as she can remember. Too bad he’s about as far from “perfect” as an Amish man could get… but that’s exactly why she’s so drawn to him.

The Cautious Maiden – Dawn Crandall - Violet Hawthorne is beyond mortified when her brother Ezra turns their deceased parents' New England country inn into a brothel to accommodate the nearby lumberjacks but when Violet's own reputation is compromised, the inn becomes the least of her worries. In an effort to salvage her good name, Violet is forced into an engagement with a taciturn acquaintance, Vance Everstone   

The Devoted – Suzanne Woods Fisher - #2 The Bishop’s FamilyBright, curious, and restless, Ruthie Stoltzfus loves her family but is stuck in a sea of indecision about her future: Should she stay Amish? Or should she leave?  Patrick Kelly is a young man on a journey of his own. He's come to Stoney Ridge to convert to the Amish and has given himself thirty days to learn the language, drive a buggy, and adapt to "everything Plain." 

Tainted – Morgan L. Busse - Kat Bloodmayne is one of the first women chosen to attend the Tower Academy of Sciences. But she carries a secret: she can twist the natural laws of science. She has no idea where this ability came from, only that every time she loses control and unleashes this power, it kills a part of her soul. If she doesn't find a cure soon, her soul will die and she will become something else entirely.

Saffire – Sigmund Brower - For President Teddy Roosevelt, controlling the east-west passage between two oceans mattered so much that he orchestrated a revolution to control it. His command was to ‘let the dirt fly’ and for years, the American Zone of the Panama Canal mesmerized the world, working in uneasy co-existence with the Panamanian aristocrats. 

Long Way Gone – Charles Martin -Five years after losing everything, Cooper O'Conner falls in love with Daley Cross, an angelic voice in need of a song. But just as he realizes his love for Daley, Cooper faces a tragedy that threatens his life as well as his career. With nowhere else to go, he returns home to the remote Colorado mountains, searching for answers about his father and his faith. 

Friday, October 28, 2016

quote

Not all those who wander are lost.

– J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

My favorite Tolkien quote.  

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

New Release - Noah - Tim Chaffey/K. Marie Adams

New Release - Noah: Man of Destiny The Remnant Trilogy - # 1


Noah: Man of Destiny takes readers on a captivating, coming-of-age journey. Noah learns about the Most High while standing against a sinister belief system emerging throughout the land. Whether escaping legendary beasts, tracking kidnappers, or pursuing his future wife, Noah acquires the skills he will need when God calls him to his greatest adventure: surviving the global Flood.

  • Witness the struggle of a righteous man’s battle against a culture that thought of evil continually
  • Explore what it may have been like for a righteous man to relate to God before the Bible was written
  • Non-fiction portions in the back of the book help explain historical concepts and provide teaching sections that deal with issues and concerns that arise in the account.
Gain fresh insights into the people and events of the pre-Flood world through the engaging, adventure-filled first novel of the Remnant Trilogy.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

New Release - The Room with the Second Best View - Virginia Smith

The Room with the Second Best View - Virginia Smith 
The B&B Is Open for Business!
Shhh...
Image result for The Room with the second best viewExcitement is in the air in Goose Creek, Kentucky, as the small town prepares to celebrate its 150th anniversary and the veterinarian's upcoming wedding. But trouble is brewing in this provincial paradise...
Al Richardson agreed to open a B&B with his wife after his retirement in two years, but Millie secretly invites some guests to stay for the wedding. She plans to be the most gracious Southern hostess—until a tumble down the stairs leaves her unprepared for their quirky and cantankerous first guest.

Meanwhile, the town's anniversary plans are in a state of chaos as the celebration committee scrambles to raise the necessary funds—an effort spearheaded by a "newcomer," which ruffles the towns folk's feathers.
Goose Creek has lasted 150 years. Can it survive the next month?

Monday, October 24, 2016

New Releases - October 17 - 22

Dear Readers,

The colder temps are looming.  Snow is coming, I know it because I have lived in West Michigan most of my life.  Which means it is hot tea and a warm blanket weather.  Time to snuggle in for a long winter's read.

Happy Reading, 

The Looming Storm – Diane and David Munson -when Federal Agent Eva Montanna uncovers a menacing threat to harm Eva and her family. When daughter Kaley travels to Eastern Europe on a class trip, Eva’s Christian faith is challenged, and their lives are altered in the blink of an eye. Tensions skyrocket as Eva and Griff Topping, her FBI partner, use every trick to infiltrate a band of Florida smugglers.  

Mattie’s Pledge – Jan Drexler - Mattie Schrock is no stranger to uprooting her life. Even as her father relocated her family from one Amish community to the next, she always managed to find a footing in their new homes. Now as the Schrock family plans to move west from Somerset County to a fledgling Amish settlement in Indiana, she looks forward to connecting with old friends who will be joining them from another Pennsylvania community

The Undoing of Saint Silvanus – Beth Moore - Only God knew why Jillian Slater agreed to return to New Orleans on the news that her father had finally drunk himself to death. It's not like they were close. She hadn t seen him or her grandmother, the ice queen in almost 20 years. But when Adella Atwater, the manager of her grandmother's apartment house, called and said Jillian's expenses would be paid if she'd fly in for the burial, a free trip to New Orleans was too intriguing to resist

Mary; Chosen of God – Diana Wallis Taylor - Mary is ordinary girl from Nazareth. She helps her mother with household chores, she daydreams about a handsome carpenter's son named Joseph, and at night she lies on the roof and contemplates at the stars. But one evening, a heavenly visitor comes with unexpected news;and her life is changed forever. 

Room with the Second Best View – Virginia Smith - #3 Tales of the Goose Creek B&B- Excitement is in the air in Goose Creek, Kentucky, as the small town prepares to celebrate its 150th anniversary and the veterinarian's upcoming wedding. But trouble is brewing in this provincial paradise...

Noah: Man of Destiny – Tim Chaffey & K. Marie Adams - The Remnant Trilogy # 1 -  Noah learns about the Most High while standing against a sinister belief system emerging throughout the land. Whether escaping legendary beasts, tracking kidnappers, or pursuing his future wife, Noah acquires the skills he will need when God calls him to his greatest adventure: surviving the global Flood.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Which Reading Nook is Perfect for you?


Dear Readers,

What a fun little quiz.  Turns out my library needs a secret room just for my reading.

Image result for pictures of secret reading rooms




What did you get?


https://www.qzzr.com/c/quiz/278258/which-reading-nook-is-perfect-for-you


Happy Reading,

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Thoughts

Dear Readers,

I think most of you have heard me mention or review a book I have "read" by listening to on Overdrive.  It is an app on my phone through the local library.  It is the best app I have downloaded.  I only have a couple 'rules' about the books I read.  If it is fiction it needs to be something I wouldn't normally carry here in the store, with the exception being if it is for my bookclub and have no other chance to read it.

The other rule is if I really am not enjoying the book, then it really is okay to stop listening to it.  But I do have to give it at least two trips to and from work before I make that decision.  It has only happened twice.  One book turned out to be basically the characters running around sleeping with anyone and everyone and making crude jokes - not at all what the book was advertised as and the other the reader of the book had a voice that was way to tedious to enjoy the book.  I actually found myself not listening to the book most of the time and so never had any idea what was going on.

There is another aspect of this that I had never thought of.  It has shown me a glaring problem in Christian fiction.  Now before I get to that problem I have to say, there is tons of really good Christian fiction.  There are many that have become friends of mine and sit on my bookshelves at home. I love them, recommend them and will someday, reread them.  So I am not trying to throw out all of Christian fiction, this is just something I find missing.

That thing is the book that is just a good story.  Something that isn't trying to make a point, that isn't trying to get me to learn Bible verses or listen to a sermon.  Something that lets me wrestle with the moral dilemma or character's choices.  One that just never tells me the right or wrong on those choice and how I might agree or disagree with them.  A book where happily ever after just might be missing from the end of the book.  (I can't tell you how many books I have read in the Christian market that has an ending set 6 months later so people are saved, married or expecting a child or all of the above)

I just finished a book that will soon be on my shelves here at the store.  Overall all was a good read.  I love the premise of the book and yet conveniently the main character went to church every 4th or 5th chapter and we all got a lovely sermon.  *Sigh*  Not really part of the story, it was included so the main character could soon arrive at an epiphany that made sure we all had the plan of salvation.  

This story really didn't need it, but somewhere along the line, that is what Christian fiction has become. Only about the status quo.  If it worked once, lets continue doing it.  Now again, let me say, we do need those books, people read them and love them.  But there are others who want that in-depth story that they have to wrestle with more.  I am having trouble finding that title without a Christian lesson in it in the Christian market, but I am finding it in the secular market.

My pleas are not just for authors as I know authors who are or are trying to write books like this, but to publishers.  Challenge us as readers.  Make us question things and struggle with what our characters do.  It might even make us bump heads once and a while with other readers, but of course that is so much fun for us readers.

Those are just some thoughts I have

Happy reading,