Thursday, March 21, 2013

Book Review Starting Now

Starting Now: A Blossom Street Novel (Blossom Street #9)Starting Now: A Blossom Street Novel by Debbie Macomber
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Debbie Macomber has quickly become one of my favorite authors. I have not read the Blossom Street Series, but I would like to go back to my local library and get all of the back stories!

"For years Libby Morgan dreamed only of making partner in her competitive, high-pressure law firm. She sacrificed everything for her career—her friends, her marriage, her chance at creating a family. When her boss calls Libby into his office, she assumes it will finally be good news, but nothing can prepare her for the shocking reality: She’s been let go and must rebuild her entire life . . . starting now.

With no job prospects in sight, Libby reaches out to old friends and spends her afternoons at A Good Yarn, the local knitting store. There she forms a close bond with Lydia, the sweet-natured shop owner; Lydia’s spirited teenage daughter, Casey; and Casey’s best friend, Ava, a shy yet troubled girl who will shape Libby’s future in surprising and profound ways.

As A Good Yarn becomes a second home—and the women a new kind of family—Libby relishes the different person she’s become. She even finds time for romance with a charming and handsome doctor who seems to be her perfect match. But just as everything is coming together, Libby must make a choice that could forever change the life she holds so dear."

This is really an adorable story. I'm not sure if I was expecting more, or if I just wasn't in the best mind-set to read this book. I loved the characters, the descriptions and the story line. The part I had trouble with was the quick build up and then disappointment to the almost adoption. I just felt like it wasn't clearly expressed and clearly delivered to the reader.

This luke-warm read will not keep me from enjoying the rest of the Blossom Street Series!

View all my reviews

Book Review Imperfect Pairings

I received this as an advanced review copy through NetGalley.

I was also disappointed in this selection. It left me feeling flat and frustrated. First, it was the larger than normal amounts of Italian scattered throughout the conversations, then it was the way the two main characters treated each other. It may be a true reflection of how some couples interact with each other, but it's not the kind of story I want to spend hours reading.  At least the title got it right.

I just couldn't ever fall in love or connect with any of the characters.

Book Review One Step Too Far

I received this as a free preview from NetGalley and I had a hard time getting into the book initially. Each chapter dealt with a different character and I felt I was going back re-reading various chapters in order to make sense of it. I almost quit a few chapters in. However, I'm glad I read the book in it's entirety.

Emily is a confused, troubled woman. I did not appreciate the extent of her disturbed mind until the big twist was revealed toward the end.

The final, final ending I was not exactly pleased with. By the time it came around to wrap it all up, I felt almost betrayed by the author. I didn't know if I should even trust what was she was indicating. I think after you've invested so much time and energy into a character as a reader, then you get blind-sided by a HUGE secret, you feel hurt, almost "used".

I'm glad I read the book. I just don't agree that it will be the book everyone is talking about this Summer.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Book Review A Woman's Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year

A Woman's Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year: A Life-Changing Journey Into the Heart of God

What a great way to bring a group of women together and study God's word.  I love how this book is written and organized.  It contains everything you need to succeed.  It's 52 sections, with a great weekly synopsis, reading assignments, and general discussion starter questions. 

As a Bible Study Leader, I realize women must have a fierce determination to stay on task and focused.  This is a long time to have a weekly study without losing your members.  Individually, I can see myself succeeding much better than trying to lead a group for an entire year. 

The daily tasks seem short, succinct and will be able to be accomplished in 20-30 minutes of reading a day. 

I received a free copy from Bethany House Publishers for my honest review.

Book Review The Briarpatch Gospel

The Briarpatch Gospel: Fearlessly Following Jesus Into the Thorny Places

The first chapter was compelling.  I wanted to just delve into it and absorb as much as I could as quickly as possible.  After that, I found myself arguing more and more with both myself and the author.  While I agree with quite a lot of what he addresses, there are things that I have to question and shake my head over.

I absolutely love the change in my mindset to live and love more like Jesus.  Love and care for the needy like never before.   I want to be compassionate and act on that compassion.  I don't want to just pass by and do nothing.

On the same token, I don't like being made to feel like I am part of a "self-righteous" church simply because we do not follow absolutely all of his thoughts.  My church is the body of Christ and it feels like my home.  It's warm, welcoming, accepting and loving. 

I intend to change myself from the inside out after reading this book.  I also want to dig deeper into many of the topics he addressed.  I'm not a theologian.  I love my Christ and I do intend to follow him into the briarpatch.  

Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book, to review.