This book is fantastic and blessed me beyond my expectations. Kim Robinson has documented her visits to heaven and made them available to us in the form of Heaven Is Real and Fun so we can enjoy "trips" to heaven too. God loves His children so much that He has made heaven fun and an adventure we can look forward to. Kim's stories are riveting, intriguing, as well as inspirational, and I couldn't wait to continue reading page after page, as she unfolded revelation of what God showed her. Heaven is Real and Fun is an ideal choice to complement family devotions and Bible reading, or simply to read on your own or with your children as you teach them about God. This book is well worth your time!
Black Poodle Over Seven Hills, written by Victoria Bastedo and set in the Queen Anne area of Seattle, Washington, is a fun novel which is one part mystery, one part romance, and one part suspense. It certainly did not take long for me to get completely caught up in this story of mistaken identity, new beginnings and intrigue. In no time at all, strangers Timothy Marsh and Soubrette Mourer, meet when they are unexpectedly brought together by a little black poodle named Fufu, a.k.a. Artemis, develop their budding relationship and soon become best friends. From the get-go, each conversation is witty and entertaining, and there was not one boring scene in the entire story.
Black Poodle Over Seven Hills did not lag, the plot is well written and kept the story moving forward; and because there was never a dull moment, it kept my interest throughout. This book is a treat for people who like to read romance mixed with just a hint of humor. The lively and believable characters immediately came to life for me as, one by one, they are introduced. Victoria Bastedo does a great job of characterization, and every character in this book is fun and likable, except the one who is not supposed to be. It would not matter if you took this book to the beach for light summertime reading, or decided to curl up with a blanket by the fireplace to get lost in fiction for an afternoon. Either way, this book will bring a smile to your face.
Please note I initially read and reviewed this book courtesy of Readers’ Favorite.
It's Not Common Cent$, written by Aaminah Amin, is an inspiring financial crash course prioritizing long-term over short-term benefits as the route to prosperity. Challenging me to live within my means, her advice gave me new insights into money management, along with an action plan I can implement without feeling intimidated. Her fun, engaging writing style on a topic often deemed dull and boring, kept me interested and entertained. She was my coach, and I felt as if she were alongside me as I read, cheering me on to make responsible fiscal decisions, and to set a goal of putting debt in my past, where it belongs, instead of my future, where it doesn’t. Using words such as depreciation, compound interest and cash flow, she explains these terms in ways more easily understood than net asset value, or the fine print on my home’s purchase agreement. Providing pivot tables and algebraic calculations for everything from tracking transactions to sticking to a budget like a pro, she laid out practical, clear steps I can take to achieve my objectives. Aaminah has successfully mastered the principles she presents to find ways to save money today, leading to financial freedom tomorrow.
She helped me understand money inside and out in order to avoid financial pitfalls at all costs; discussing life, home, car and health insurance; paying taxes; and employing multiple income streams to bring in revenue. I learned that simply knowing how to add and subtract in order to balance my checkbook does not necessarily mean I handle money well, nor does it transfer to wealth management. She pointed out that I need an action plan, a budget and consistency - all key to the building blocks that stack one upon the other to produce prosperity, instead of debt. Putting a positive spin on budgeting, Aaminah assured me I can attain my financial goals and assign my money a task, so it doesn't control me, but I control it. The longer I read, the tougher the questions I asked myself became: Am I exhibiting good spending habits, using my money for necessities and practicing delayed gratification? Am I investing in my future in lieu of impulse buying and living paycheck to paycheck? Am I prioritizing the long term over the short term? One of my favorite quotes she used in her book is from Will Rogers - “The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it in your back pocket.” Properly paced for maximum reading enjoyment and filled with memorable principles for budgeting, managing and saving money, hers is a must-have book for people fed up with simply staring at their savings potential, and those who are ready to be empowered to put a budget into action today.
I will definitely suggest reading It’s Not Common Cent$ to my college-age and adult sons who, although not spendthrifts, need as much common cent$ as I do.
Please note I initially read and reviewed this book courtesy of Readers’ Favorite.
CJ Hitz's book, 21 Days of Generosity Challenge: Experiencing the Joy That Comes From a Giving Heart, is just that ~ challenging. This book is well written, convicting and to the point. CJ has packed this little daily reader with just what you need to regain or strengthen your generosity level all based on the Word of God.
My favorite part are the ideas for extending generosity to others that are included in each chapter. It is inspirational and will help me stay on track each day as I try to keep my priorities in order and show love to others in ways that bring God the glory.
I am always open to learning more about giving to others from my heart and listening for God's prompting to do so. Having CJ Hitz's nuggets of wisdom, divided up into small segments, almost like daily devotionals, is perfect. I also really liked the examples from his own life he shared where he was either giving or others or on the receiving end of someone else's generosity. In very short chapters which take only a few minutes to read, I can start our day on a great path toward generosity -- giving not only financially, but praying for others, offering my time, my talents, myself -- in ways I may not have thought of before.
I enjoyed this book tremendously! The author is insightful and straight to the point. If you'd like a daily devotional that will be uplifting and inspire you to be generous and give out of love for others, then this book is for you.
You can learn more about this book on the Body and Soul Publishing website.
In The Ten Greatest Prayers of the Bible, written by Benjamin Reynolds, he begins the book by telling a personal story about his life-threatening illness and near-death experience. He explores the difference between ordinary and extraordinary prayers. This book shows how to pray and get results from God the way the men and women in Bible times did. This book teaches why big words and lofty prayers are not necessary to get God's attention.
Mr. Reynolds explains what Jesus meant in Matthew 18:19-20. When two or more people agree that a matter is serious enough to be brought before the throne of God so that it can be established on the earth, God takes it more seriously than when one person makes the request. He likened this to the government taking more seriously a petition signed by a group of people rather than one person alone. He does a great job of including modern-day analogies to explain the Scriptures.
He also points out that prayer is the necessary component to compel us to go forward toward God's will, especially when we are resisting it. Using James 5:16 as an example, he encourages us to never underestimate the power that one righteous person has with God. He says, "When God sees us giving everything we have in prayer, He will match our efforts and give us His best."
Mr. Reynolds also shows us that worshipping God and exalting His magnificence and power should be a key element in any prayer. Giving God glory and honor motivates Him to grant us favor. God is able to do more than deliver us when we put our complete trust in Him. The elements of each of the ten prayers are examined, and the reason why each one was powerful. People in the Bible used prayer in different ways, such as a weapon of defense, or as a healing force.
Insightfully written, a good reference book for doing a study on prayer.
Please note: I was given a free copy of this book for my honest review.
In Staci Stallings' romance, Cowboy, country music sensation, Ashton Raines, lost his wife to cancer and every part of him wants nothing more than to walk away from his life and leave it behind and never look back. Without her, he feels life is too hard, too draining and too overwhelming and not worth living. He doesn't know who he is anymore and feels he has ceased to exist as a real person. He constantly asks himself, "Who is this person anyway? Who is this man walking around in my body?"
Beth McCasland is a single working mother of a young daughter, and she lost her husband five years earlier, and is still reeling from his absence. After a chance meeting in the restaurant where Beth works, she encourages Ashton to stop running and turn his problems over to God, but he is angry and feels God doesn't want to hear from him. He feels no one understands him, not even Beth. Theirs is a long distance relationship, nurtured through late night phone calls. Beth is very honest about her faith and her insistence that Ashton needs a relationship with God in order to move on with his life. I found her dependence upon God refreshing and enjoyed reading how her prayers and those of her daughter too, helped guide him back to spiritual restoration and a renewed relationship with God. I really liked how Beth included her daughter in the developing friendship and romance she had with Ashton.
Entertaining and easy to read, Cowboy captures all the elements of an enjoyable novel. Staci's writing shows warmth and love and she clearly cares about her characters and makes the reader feel very involved in their lives. She also does a great job of building believable and likeable characters. Beth and Ashton's story is heartrending and beautiful. I felt their pain as well as their healing as the story progressed. I loved how Staci uses Beth to bring Ashton back to his faith and closer to God than he was before. This is a clean romance, and one where the Christian message comes through loud and clear. Best of all, it has the kind of ending I like to see in books. If you are looking for a book to inspire, entertain and keep you hooked, this is it. I would not hesitate to recommend this book to anyone. This is a romance not only for adults to read, but teens will enjoy it too.
Thanks to the author for providing me with a complimentary copy of in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
Staci Stallings freely gives us glimpses into her life in her book, Reflections on Life II ~ Notes from the Journey. In this collection of 82 essays, she writes from her heart and holds nothing back. I was amazed by her transparency and inspired to share more of my own life with others in the same way. Her heart is poured out on paper and her courage to share from her life experiences is a powerful reminder for me to do the same.
Each inspirational short story looks at the different lessons Staci has learned during her walk with God. This book would make a wonderful daily devotional and every article is worth reading. I like how positive and encouraging this book is and plan on sharing a few of these essays with my husband and boys in our evening Bible time together. Staci shares with a gentle graciousness and an honesty that is hard to describe unless you read this book for yourself.
God's love for us even though we fail and fall down time and time again is a theme everyone needs to hear. There are two lines in her book that brought me to my knees in thanksgiving: "Sometimes, there is just no doubt in my mind how much God loves me. It makes me cry." The other quote is: "God love's trumps all. It always has. It always does. Let Him forgive you. Let Him love you. That's all He wants to do." Amen and amen!
This book is an excellent choice as a way to begin your day with God because the devotional readings are not too short and not too long, but just the right length. This book is packed full of truths and revelations that make me think and vow to be a better Christian.
Please note I was given a free copy of Reflections on Life II ~ Notes from the Journey in exchange for my honest review.
I really liked Staci Stallings' book, Reflections on Life. This little book packs a punch and is perfect for people with busy and hectic schedules. I found what she had to say and the examples of her life which she shared very relevant. She shares a lot of her own personal experiences in life and is so down to earth and refreshingly honest. The readings are short, yet powerful in the messages they deliver.
Staci applies several of her personal stories to Biblical passages making it easier to understand and utilize the information. Her generous sharing of personal struggles, real life examples and scenarios that anyone can relate to gives readers strength and encouragement to overcome their challenges. This book is calming, motivating and inspirational, and a perfect book to pick up every day for a quick read. I wouldn't hesitate to gift this book as a gift, and I would recommend it to anyone.
I was provided with a complimentary copy for my honest review.
Through her unique book, Dancing From the Shadows, D'Ann Renner opened my eyes to the world of autism and what raising a special needs child entails ~ the struggles and problems; the emotional rollercoaster parents and family members encounter; dealing with multiple doctors' appointments, medications and therapy modalities; working with school personnel; and navigating through the various reactions and prejudices from siblings, classmates, friends and neighbors. As I read her story, I felt the St. John family's initial exhilaration and excitement when they adopted Lydia and Gabe from Bulgaria, then experienced their ensuing exhaustion, frustration, fears and worries, hopes for their adopted children's futures, and dashed dreams after discovering Gabe is autistic. This is a significant blow because they didn't want to raise a special needs child with complex medical issues, and Lydia resents the extra attention Gabe receives due to his behavioral outbursts and health issues.
In her book, D'Ann tackles the tough topic of raising an autistic child, explaining the symptoms of the disorder in so much detail I felt as if I were right there with the St. Johns witnessing firsthand the struggles and triumphs they went through. The characters are well developed in a way that shows they are far from perfect. Their true, raw emotions - both positive and negative - make them seem real, down to earth and relatable. It was like I had a front row seat where I could personally view the harsh reality of what was happening in their home as they faced their day-to-day challenges.
Not only are the St. Johns struggling with a change in their economic status since Tori left the work force to stay at home and raise their children full-time, but their medical bills are mounting, life is overwhelming, and their marriage becomes rocky as she spends more time focused on the children and less time focused on her husband. Determined to find a "cure" for Gabe's autism, Tori is no pushover and finds herself lobbying medical personnel and the school district for their assistance. She advocates for Gabe at every turn, even at the expense of alienating her husband, Philip, in the process. I really liked Tori's spunk and her ability to not let obstacles stand in her way. I particularly enjoyed the scene where she confronts her husband's co-worker, Delia, and lets her know in no uncertain terms that Philip is "off limits." I wanted to be part of the office's administrative assistant pool just so I could watch their encounter firsthand!
This is the first novel I've read dealing with the issues of adoption and autism, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The story is not preachy at all, yet weaves themes of God's love, provision, forgiveness and redemption throughout it in a way that has wide appeal for both the Christian and the non-Christian audience.
Shining her light for God through her website, D'Ann Renner, believing normal is just a point of view, talks about Dancing From the Shadows where you can read the first chapter for free.
The book, Reunited at Christmas, written by best-selling author Debra Ullrick, is a cozy, touching romance filled with a hint of suspense. Combining themes of faith, love, and reunion, this Christmas miracle story will capture your heart and leave you feeling good.
Shelby Davis’s faith in God is tested as the holiest season of the year approaches, and she remains hurt and confused about her broken relationship with Ryker Anderson. Three months before they were to be married and without explanation, he crushed her heart and dashed her dreams. Is it possible for them to be reunited?
This tender story will add joy to the Christmas holiday and keep you turning the pages. Filled with sympathetic characters, this romance had me wanting the best for Shelby and Ryker, and I kept cheering them on. I liked Shelby’s parents and thought they added a lot of fun to this story.
Please note: I was given a free copy of this book for my honest review.
Paula Lynn McGrew
I am a Christian wife, mother and author who strives to serve Jesus Christ in every area of my life and let my light shine for Him.