High as the Heavens – Book Review

32497037

Synopsis:

A British nurse in WWI German-occumpied Brussels, Evelyn Marche spends her days at the hospital and her nights working at a cafe… or so it seems. Eve’s most carefully guarded secret is that she also spends her nights carrying out dangerous missions as a spy for a Belgian resistance group.

When a plane crashes as she’s en route to a rendezvous, Eve is the first to reach the downside plane and is shocked to recognize the badly injured pilot as British RFC Captain Simon Forrester.  She risks her life to conceal him from the Germans, but as the secrets between them grow and the danger mounts, can they still hope to make it out of Belgium alive?

My Review:

In High as the Heavens, Kate Breslin intertwines adventure, mystery, espionage, romance, nationalism and history beautifully.  Few books would make great movies.  This is one of them.

Eve is a war widow who is trapped in German occupied Brussels working as a nurse during the day and in a cafe in the evenings.  What most people don’t know is that she also works as a spy for a Belgian resistance group.

While on a mission she is the first to find the wreckage of a downed plane and recognizes the pilot as Simon Forrester.  They have a past.  Romance develops with a LOT of tension! Enough to make you want to keep reading and keep reading.

This book is so full of excitement, romance, kindness, and fun that you won’t want to put it down.

I will be looking forward to Kate Breslin next novel with enthusiasm.

*This book has been provided courtesy of Compassion Canada and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

Advertisements

The Two of Us – Book Review

32510783

 

Synopsis:

After two broken engagements, nurse practitioner Mia Robinson is done with dating. From now on, she only trusts herself and God, and she’s focused on her eighteen-year-old sister, Lucy, and caring for patients. Just as she applies to work for an international aid organization, a phone call from Lucy, who’s pregnant and running off to marry her twenty-one-year-old boyfriend, throws a wrench into all of Mia’s plans.

Jake Tanner may have recovered from the physical injuries he sustained on the job as a police officer, but his heart has yet to heal from losing his former partner in the tragedy. He’s poured himself into starting a camp for the sons of fallen officers and mentoring Sam, the adult son of his deceased partner, who’s asked him to be his best man at his wedding.

Mia is expecting a mess when she arrives to sort out the situation with Lucy, but she wasn’t expecting Jake. And Jake, who can’t help envying Sam and Lucy, doubts he’ll ever experience their happiness for himself. But maybe Jake’s courage and Mia’s caring spirit are just what they need to bring them a lifetime of healing and a forever kind of love. . . .

My Review:

This book was a true page turner that I couldn’t put down!  It was easy to read, easy to engage with and easy to relate to the characters.

Lucy is a fun, exciting, on the edge kind of character who I can’t really relate to but loved getting to know.  Mia is more relatable for me.  She thinks things through, she’s cautious and responsible. Then there’s Jake…

When Mia thinks she is finally on a safe, straight path her sister’s wedding throws a wrench in all her plans.  She meets the grooms best man and the story takes off from there.  The message that this book gets through to the reader is impactful.  So much so that I found myself close to tears on numerous occasions.

Victoria Bylin definitely gets the message across that she is hoping to in this book.  I highly recommend it!

*Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

Heart on the Line – Book Review

32510778

Synopsis:

When Danger Arrives, It’s More Than Just Her Heart on the Line

Grace Mallory is tired of hiding.  She hungers for a normal life, perhaps even a suitor like two of her friends in Harper’s Station have found.  But when the man she believes responsible for her father’s death discovers her whereabouts, survival takes priority.

Amos Bedsoe prefers bicycles to horses and private conversations over the telegraph wire to social gatherings with young ladies who see him as nothing more than an oddity. His fellow telegrapher, the mysterious Miss G, has been the ideal companion.  For months, their friendship – dare he believe, courtship? – over the wire has fed his hope that he has finally found the woman God intends for him.  However, when he intercepts an ominous message and discovers her life is in peril, Amos must shed the cocoon of his quiet nature to become the hero Grace requires.

My Review:

This book has everything that I look for in a book – romance, great characters, suspense, comedy and a great backdrop to the plot.

Grace and Amos become great friends, and more, because of their mutual interest in being telegraph operators.  They spend many nights conversing with each other through the telegraph.  Amos is not a very masculine man but he knows who he is, he is kind, respectful and understanding.  Grace is very independent and has no problem taking care of herself.  But when they come together to escape who they believe murdered Graces father they find that they compliment each other perfectly.  Until a strong, manly detective from Pinkerton steps into the picture.

The question of whether Grace will remain true to Amos or fall for the handsomely Pinkerton detective will keep you turning the pages of this book until the end.

I highly recommend this book, as well as all others of Karen Witemeyer, to anyone who enjoys a clean romantic read.

*This book has been provided courtesy of Compassion Canada and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

Invitation – Book Review

51RpCRddiJL._SX332_BO1,204,203,200_

 

Synopsis:

Four Strangers with gifts they don’t understand.  A world falling into darkness.  This is Harbingers.

You’re invited on a journey of suspense and the supernatural as four of your labourite bestselling authors team up for a unique series.  

From the minds of Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt, and Alton Gansky, Invitation compiles the first four episodes of Harbingers, each following a different character.

Brenda – the street-hustling tattoo artist who sees image of the future
The Professor – the atheist ex-priest ruled by logic
Andi – the professor’s brilliant but geeky assistant who sees inexplicable patterns
Tank – the naive, big-hearted jock with a surprising connection to a healing power

Brought together for the first time in “The Call,” the four soon realize pockets of darkness are emerging throughout the world.  Whether it involves a mysterious house, the unexplainable death of animals around the world, or an otherworldly little girl, each puzzle they solve brings them closer to the ultimate explanation of what’s happening.  But will they discover the truth in time?

My Review:

I wasn’t really sure what to expect going into this book.  I kind of thought I would get confused or not be engaged since there were 4 different writing types and voices.  But I was surprisingly pleased to find that when I read it I was completely wrapped up in the characters and the plot of each novella.

Each author writes as one of the characters, each novella building on the first until they all combine and overlap.

I don’t usually read books of this type as I scare quite easily but I found this book to be interesting, captivating, and a book that I really didn’t want to put down; not a book that I was afraid to read alone!

If you are a fan of any of the four authors – Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt or Alton Gansky – I highly recommend reading Invitation and I can’t wait for the second Harbingers book to be released!

With You Always – Book Review

9780764218040

 

Could Following the Opportunity of a Lifetime Cost Them the Love of Their Lives?

Synopsis:

One of the many immigrants struggling to survive in 1850s New York, Elise Neumann knows she must take action to care for her younger sisters.  She finds a glimmer of hope when the New York Children’s Aid Society starts sending skilled workers to burgeoning towns out west.  But the promise of the society’s orphan trains is not all that it seems.

Born into elite New York society, Thornton Quincy possesses everything except the ability to step out from his brother’s shadow.  When their ailing father puts forth a unique challenge to determine who will inherit his railroad-building empire, Thornton finally sees his chance.  The conditions to win?  Be the first to build a sustainable community along the Illinois Central Railroad and find a suitable wife.

Thrown together against all odds, Elise and Thornton couldn’t be from more different worlds.  The spark that ignites between them is undeniable, but how can they let it grow when that means forfeiting everything they’ve been working toward?

My Review:

Elise is the caring for her young sisters but has to leave to go find work in the midwest.  Elise is strong, outspoken and speaks up when she sees an injustice happening.  I love this about her character although it lands her in trouble on a few occasions.

Thornton Quincy is developing a town along the railroad and is challenged to be the first to develop a town and win over a woman’s heart and marry her.  He is an upper class member of elite society, but not without his own challenges.  He is desperate to win this challenge in order to sept out from his older brother’s shadows and win his father’s affections.

It just so happens that Elise finds work in the very town that Thornton is developing.  He is attracted to her outspoken character and he desire to see justice.  Whether or not they can move past their different backgrounds and lifestyles is a question that will keep you turning the pages of this book.

The setting of this book wasn’t my favourite but that is just my own preference.  Everything else about this book was a fantastic read and I look forward to reading Book 2 in the Orphan Train Series.

*This book has been provided courtesy of Compassion Canada and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

 

 

Under a Summer Sky – Book Review

51yyrIZyqHL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

Synopsis:

High School art teacher Nicole Anderson is looking forward to a relaxing summer in Savannah, house-sitting and managing an art gallery for a family friend.  The house is luxurious in a way that only old money could make it, and the gallery promises interesting days in a gorgeous setting.  Yet it isn’t long before her ideal summer turns into more than she bargained for: a snooty gallery employee who’s determined to force her out, a displaced adolescent roosting in the attic, and two of her childhood friends – who also happens o be brothers – vying for her attention.

With the backdrop of a gorgeous historical city, incredible architecture, and even an alleged ghost or two, combined with the opportunity for romance… anything can happen!

Bestselling and award-winning author Melody Carlson invites you to spend the summer surrounded by splendour… and tantalizing possibilities.

My Review:

I have read the first two books in this series and wasn’t the biggest fan.  I love Christian Romance and these books don’t really have any aspect of faith whatsoever.  That being said, Under a Summer Sky was an easy, light read that was enjoyable if you aren’t looking for “Christian” Romance.

Nicole is a high school art teacher who spends her summer looking after her mother’s friend’s art gallery.  While there, two childhood friends, brothers, end up trying to win her love.  There are some bumps and confusion along the way.  If the stress of two handsome men vying for your attention isn’t enough, throw in a bitter co-worker and a girlfriend! And you have yourself a great plot.

Overall I enjoyed this book as a light read for the summer.  There wasn’t any sexual reference other than a few kisses and a few “drinks” were had, although Nicole turned down the drinks every time they were offered. I would definitely let my teenage daughters read this book, but not expecting them to get any sort of faith message out of it.

*Book has been provided courtesy of Compassion Canada and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

 

A Name Unknown (Shadows Over England) – Book Review

32497002

Synopsis:

Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins that helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they concentrate on stealing high-value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. But when Rosemary must determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany, she is in for the challenge of a lifetime. How does one steal a family’s history, their very name?

Peter Holstein, given his family’s German blood, writes his popular series of adventure novels under a pen name. With European politics boiling and his own neighbors suspicious of him, Peter debates whether it might be best to change his name for good. When Rosemary shows up at his door pretending to be a historian and offering to help him trace his family history, his question might be answered.

But as the two work together and Rosemary sees his gracious reaction to his neighbors’ scornful attacks, she wonders if her assignment is going down the wrong path. Is it too late to help him prove that he’s more than his name?

Wow.  In. Love. With. Rosanna. M. White.  She is now one of my favourite authors.  This book was one of the few books that I was literally, unable to put down.  Everything from the characters, to the plot to the scenes, to the romance… Just everything.

Rosemary has been a thief most of her life but is now posing as a librarian.  She must take down Peter Holstein and prove he is guilty in order to continue to be able to care for her family.  But alas, there’s a catch. (otherwise there wouldn’t be much of a book, right?!)

Rosemary is adventurous, feisty, unpredictable.  Peter is studious, tender strong.  But when their friendship begins to blossom into more it is hard to stop turning the pages of this book to see what is going to happen next.  Then the ending was FANTASTIC!  I blew the book out of the water for me.  The ending was sweet, dramatic and climactic.

A Name Unknown is a book about drama, danger, love, life, faith and unexpected surprises.  It was an all around excellent read and I am thoroughly anticipating is sequel, A Song Unheard.

*This book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

The Captain’s Daughter – Book Review

51XEG90zVNL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

Synopsis:

When a series of circumstances beyond her control leave Rosalyn Bernay alone and penniless in London, she chances upon a job backstage at a theater that is presenting the most popular show in London. A talented musician and singer, she feels immediately at home and soon becomes enthralled with the idea of pursuing a career on the stage.

A hand injury during a skirmish in India has forced Nate Moran out of the army until he recovers. Filling his time at a stable of horses for hire in London, he has also spent the past two months working nights as a stagehand, filling in for his injured brother. Although he’s glad he can help his family through a tough time, he is counting the days until he can rejoin his regiment. London holds bitter memories for him that he is anxious to escape. But then he meets the beautiful woman who has found a new lease on life in the very place Nate can’t wait to leave behind.

My Review:

The Captain’s Daughter is one of my favourite types of books.  Victorian Romance.  It is set in historical London.  (where else would a victorian romance novel be set???)

A young woman, Rosalyn Belay, is left alone, without friends, without family and without a penny to her name.  She is lucky that she is able to find a job, working backstage as a stage hand.  This job is perfect for her because she is an aspiring singer/actress.  She feels perfectly at home.

It is here, at the theatre, that she meets Nate Moran, who can’t wait for his injuries to heal so he can be with his regimen again on the the front lines.  But then he meets beautiful Rosalyn.  Although their future seems unsure, together they focus on their future, their faith and their love for each other.

The Captain’s Daughter is a book that will leave you feeling hopeful and full of faith.  It is an easy read, and a book that captures the heart.

*Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

On Love’s Gentle Shore – Book Review

51SprC+q-5L._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_

Synopsis:

Fifteen years after she left Prince Edward Island, Natalie O’Ryan had no plans to return. But when her fiancé, music producer Russell Jacobs, books their wedding in her hometown and schedules a summer at Rose’s Red Door Inn, she sets out to put the finishing touches on the perfect wedding. But she can’t possibly prepare for a run-in with Justin Kane–the best friend she left behind all those years ago after promising to stay.

Justin’s never forgotten Natalie or the music career he always dreamed of pursuing. He’d been prepared to follow her off the island until his dad died and he was left to run the family dairy farm. He’s done the best he can with the life that was thrust upon him–but with Natalie back in the picture, he begins to realize just how much joy he’s been missing.

After Natalie’s reception venue falls through, she must scramble to find an alternative, and the only option seems to be a barn on Justin’s property. As they work together to get the dilapidated building ready for the party, Natalie and Justin discover the groundwork for forgiveness–and that there may be more than an old friendship between them.

REVIEW:

As the final book in this series I am somewhat sad that it has come to an end.  All of the books in this series were well written, easy to read, fun and sweetly romantic.

I was particularly drawn in to this book and the romance, attraction and heartache that accompanied Natalie and Justin and Natalie’s move back to PEI.  Everything Natalie has overcome has been heartbreaking and to see her relationship with Justin come to fulfilment in this book was very satisfying.

It was almost too clear from the beginning what was about to unfold between Natalie and Russell but for some reason I was okay with that.

Liz Johnson has a way with words that makes you feel like you are IN the book.  Her descriptions of characters, setting, feelings, moods, smells, and food!  I was so wrapped up in this book, and this series that I was almost sad to see it come to an end.

*This Book has been provided courtesy of Compassion Canada and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*

Women Who Move Mountains: Praying With Confidence, Boldness and Grace – Book Review

515V93JcVxL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_

Synopsis:

Amid our packed schedules and life’s curve balls, our hearts long for more.  We want to live and love well; we want to be a source of joy and life for others.  The good news is that we can – and the secret is found in the simple act of prayer.  Prayer was never meant to be a recitation of requests, but rather a drawing closer to the heart of God.  

In this book, Sue Detweiler reveals how to                                                                                 -Exchange the obstacles of life for the promises of God                                                                  -Pray with passion and confidence rather than fear and insecurity                                              -Transform brokenness into wholeness, anxiety into peace, and disappointment into hope                                                                                                                                                   -Become a woman whose powerful prayers transform not only her own life, but the world around her

With a study guide and journaling prompts included, this is the perfect book to take you deeper in your prayer life, either on your own or with a group.

My Review:

This book is fantastic for those of us who are looking for a step-by-step guide to developing a deeper relationship and prayer time with Jesus.  It teaches us who we are in Christ.  We are healed, we are humble, we are bold, and how to speak to Jesus and pray from THAT place.

The format of the book is great for individual study or for group bible study.  The chapters alternate between stories of women and stories from the bible to a study outline.  Many areas of brokenness are addressed in this book such as pride, shame, sadness, perfectionism, self doubt, fear, and how the bible helps to heal us from these things.  I was able to relate to many of these and was able to reflect on my own journey to wholeness in some of these areas as well.

There is a part two of the book that is “21 Days of Reflection and Prayer”.  It can either be read to coincide with the chapters of the book, or on it’s own.  I read it on it’s own and it was a great finish to a great book!

*This book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.*