Monday, January 30, 2017

At Love's Bidding

    BOOK REVIEW: After helping her grandfather at their Boston auction house, Miranda Wimplegate discovers she's accidentally sold a powerful family's prized portrait to an anonymous bidder. Desperate to appease the people who could ruin them forever, they track it to the Missouri Ozarks and make an outlandish offer to buy the local auction house and all its holdings before the painting can move again.
    Upon crossing the country, however, Miranda and her grandfather discover their new auction house doesn't deal in fine antiques, but in livestock. And its frustratingly handsome manager, Wyatt Ballentine, is annoyed to discover his fussy new bosses don't know a thing about the business he's single-handedly kept afloat. Faced with more heads of cattle than they can count--but no mysterious painting--Miranda and Wyatt form an unlikely but charged partnership to try and prevent a bad situation from getting worse.
     MY REVIEW:  I found this to be an entertaining, humorous book. Regina Jennings did a wonderful job with her characters and the storyline. There are several dimensions and the story keeps moving well with plenty of mystery--and surprises.
       Miranda accompanies her grandfather to Missouri to seek out a painting they accidentally sold. But Miranda's job gets complicated with her grandfather's sudden mental decline--he is fascinated by the oddest things and buys huge quantities of them to sell back home, things that would never sell in Boston.
        And then there was the actual auctionhouse--what a funny scene to see Grandfather trying to sell cattle in Missouri as he would antiques in Boston, with Wyatt watching frustratedly and the buyers getting annoyed.
        Then of course, the painting is introduced, but in a very surprising way--let's just say there is quite the twist in this book. And an interesting ending.
         As with books like this, there were sparks between Miranda and Wyatt, but I appreciated that there was more to the story than that.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Treasures in Dark Places

        Treasures in Dark Places by Leanna Cinquanta tells her life story and details her mission work.
        Called by drastic measures, Leanna goes to India. Not only does she go alone with no mission backing, but she also lives with the people--drinks their water and eats their food. This alone would be reason to fail, but she definitely has the Lord on her side, and by His might, she is "moving mountains".
         I found this book to be well-written; it held my attention. The first half of the book tells of Leanna's life from little on up until she leaves for India. My first impression was that she should have written more about her ministry, but after reading the book I realized that knowing her background really is key to understanding how she accomplishes what she does.
         Leanna strongly disbelieved in God until one night she meets Him face-to-face. From that moment, she lives entirely for Him, giving up her dreams to meet His in India. Her mom is reborn as well, but her dad makes life difficult for them in that area--he doesn't allow them to attend church or read the Bible. However, Leanna copies select Scriptures onto a sheet of paper that she can read behind a book, and memorizes it as well.
        Leanna's ministry in India has grown rapidly. She has started her own organization, TellAsia Ministries. There are several natives that are preaching and ministering to their people, and several schools are being run to teach children to read. Their biggest focus is rescuing children from abuse/trafficking, and they have found that educating the millions of poor children is one of their best weapons in fighting that battle.
       I really enjoyed reading this book, and was blessed to see what a difference one person can make when doing God's will.

                          I received this book from CHOSEN in exchange for my honest review. 

Monday, January 23, 2017

An Uncommon Courtship

        BOOK REVIEW:  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.
        Life for Lady Adelaide Bell was easier when she hid in her older sister's shadow--which worked until her sister got married. But even with her socially ambitious mother's focus entirely on her, the last thing she expected was a marriage of convenience before she's been introduced to society.
        With nothing going as expected, can Trent and Adelaide's marriage of obligation survive their own missteps and the pressures of London society to grow into a true meting of hearts and minds?

         MY REVIEW:   I have really enjoyed this series, and this book is no exception. Trent is the second brother in the Hawthorne family. He did not have a strong role in the previous two books, but a noticeable one nonetheless. This book displays his full humor and character, plus that of Lady Adelaide's. I found it to be a highly interesting and enjoyable book. I can only hope that the series continues. :)
         I am a fan of this era, and I like Kristi's style of writing. Plus, the Hawthorne family is one of high societal standing, which I especially enjoy reading about. A very good combination if you ask me. I am hoping that the story continues with Griffith, the oldest sibling. It should be a very interesting story, judging by his role in previous books.
        One of the things I really appreciate about the Hawthorne family is their faith and love--both for God and each other. They all support each other and live for God. I realize this is a fiction story, but I think it can still be applied to our lives. One instance is when Trent is asking Griffith for advice, and Griffith says that this happened because God wanted it to--He is going to make it work, simply trust Him.
        I really liked this book and am  really glad I was able to read it.

                     I received this book from BETHANY HOUSE in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Maybe It's You

     BOOK REVIEW:   Nurse Sloane Ferrell escaped her risky past--new name, zip code, job, and a fresh start. She's finally safe, if she avoids a paper trail and doesn't let people get too close. Like the hospital's too-smooth marketing man with his relentless campaign to plaster one "lucky" employee's face on freeway billboards.
     Micah Prescott's goal is to improve the Hope hospital image, but his role as a volunteer crisis responder is closer to his heart. The selfless work helps fill a void in his life left by family tragedy. So does a tentative new relationship with the compassionate, beautiful, and elusive Sloane Ferrell.
     Then a string of brutal crimes makes headlines, summons responders......and exposes disturbing details of Sloane's past.
     Can hope spring from crisis?

      MY REVIEW:   This is the first of Candace Calvert's books that I have read. I have heard good things about her, and would have to agree that she writes some good books.
     In MAYBE IT'S YOU, Sloane and Micah are bumping into each other through their work, and a few not-quite-so-work-related incidents, such as a young girl that Sloane tries to help and a friend of Micah's who is looking for a front-page story.  As time goes by, they each struggle with painful things from their past that start coming out.
     I liked how Candace constructed Sloane's character--she is very capable and good at her job, and has a heart of gold as well, which is perfect for her job. And Micah's character was quite good as well. He is in the marketing business, but puts people above news. Not to mention he volunteers on the crisis team--not at all an easy task.
     She also included a good "Christian" vein, for lack of better description.

           I received this book from TYNDALE PUBLISHERS in exchange for my honest review.