Mama’s Bank Account (Book Challenge #2)

This was the second book that I read for my book challenge, Female Author. My sister helped me pick it out, having read it the year before. She really enjoyed the book, following a Norwiegen immigrant family living in San Francisco during the early 1900s. It is a collection of stories throughout their lives, with their mother always one of the star players.

It was really sweet! I loved the simplicity of the stories about family, coming of age, and finding your place. They are timeless themes and experiences though set in the past. I love stories about families, especially those with lots of siblings. I think that it is because I relate to those bigger families and the stories that come from it.  Mama’s Bank Account is truly a classic slice of life book.

Stay With Me

Stay with Me (A Misty River Romance, #1) by Becky Wade

Becky Wade’s new book Stay with Me is full of falling in love, growing in faith, and learning to lean on those you trust. 

Genevieve is struggling with the pressures of her career in the spotlight as well a dangerous secret that is tearing her apart. She comes to her hometown after a letter comes her way hinting at her parents hiding dangerous secrets. She is forced to seek help from the owner of the cottage she wakes up in, Sam. Sam, the owner of a large farm, is a disciplined and solitary man, who does not want to have Genevieve stay in his cottage. However, she needs help and he cannot refuse. 

I really enjoyed this book! It was sweet and so suspenseful! Genevieve and Sam were so different and they really balanced one another. She needed his steady support and convictions. He needed her vibrancy and tugging out into life. They helped one another grow and forced them to be honest about their trials. 

I could relate to Gen’s feelings of not wanting to share troubles and trials. It is difficult to share your failings, especially when you feel like you ought to be responsible and an example. I also appreciated how Genevieve grew closer to her family. They had a great relationship and really loved one another. However, they still had to learn how to adjust their relationships as the children grew up. 

It was also a great set up to the Misty River series! I loved meeting the characters, (hopefully some that will have their own books!) and am already theorizing about what comes next! I enjoyed this book a lot and would recommend it to those who are looking for a Christian romance with a touch of mystery. However, it does deal with some significant issues so be prepared if you are sensitive. 

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

Seeing Voices

Image result for seeing voices olivia smit

Ever since I heard about this book, I have been wanting to read it. And I can happily say that it was just as good as I thought it was going to be. It may even be better :). Seeing Voices is Oilvia Smit’s first book and it does not disappoint, she did a wonderful job with this book and I can’t wait to see what she writes next.

Seeing Voices gripped my heart, it was a book about a girl learning how to deal with the difficulty that has come up in her life and how to fight for her family. Skylar never thought that her life would end up like this, ending up in an accident before senior year. The accident took not only her hearing, but also her relationship with her brother. Now she has to learn how to gain back her confidence and hopefully fix her relationship with her brother.

I thought that Skylar was such a cool character, she was so complex and yet I felt like I could relate to her. She had gone through a horrible accident and she was now trying to figure out how to live the consequences. I really felt for her as she learned how to deal with being deaf and what it would mean for her in the future. 

It was so cool to see her grow, to see her learn how to live again. But she had to learn that things will not be easy and unfortunately this accident affected her whole family. This family had to learn how to pull together after a tragic event. And how to stand by each other.

I loved the side characters. I really enjoyed reading about Skylar’s family and seeing her interact with Cam and Ana. Cam and Ana were such sweet friends, they helped Skylar grow. Characters definitely make a book, and Olivia has written great characters.

This book was amazing, Seeing Voices is one of a kind. It was such a refreshing change from many of the books that are often written for teens, that tend to be depressing. Seeing Voices had real life problems, but it had a happy and encouraging ending. I totally recommend it! I can’t wait to read more of Olivia’s writing.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

In the Field of Grace

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Imagine you are stuck somewhere where everyone hates you. You only have one friend to comfort and support you, but she is incredibly bitter and has lost the will to live. You have no way to support yourself, and will probably be dead within a year. This is some people’s worst nightmare, and no sane person would volunteer to be in this predicament. But that is exactly what Ruth does. She left everything she knew to follow the God of the Israelites.

First, a little backstory on the story of Ruth. It starts with a Israelite family who came to Moab because there was a famine in Israel. The man’s name was Elimelek and his wife’s name was Naomi. Ruth ended up marrying one of their sons, but tragically both of Naomi’s sons and Elimelek died. After this event, Ruth, Naomi, and Orpah, Naomi’s other son’s wife, decided to move back to Israel. Namoi begged Orpah and Ruth to go back to Moab, but Ruth refused. She went to Israel with Naomi, and ended up gleaning, which means picking up what the actual reapers had left behind, in a man named Boaz’s field. Boaz was kind to Ruth, and he is also a relative of Elimelek.

Boaz and Ruth end up getting married, and at the end of the book, you discover that Ruth is one of David’s ancestors. David is an incredibly important character in the Bible who is an ancestor of Jesus Christ. Now, that I have explained the backstory of the book of Ruth let’s talk about In the Field of Grace.

I was recently recommended this book by a friend of mine who actually even let me borrow it. It’s called In the Field of Grace, and it is inspired by the story of Ruth and Boaz. She included all the information that was in the Bible and also added some of her own. I have always loved the story of Ruth, but Tessa Afshar reimagined it. She kept all of God’s faithfulness and love, and the inspiriningness of Ruth and Boaz, but she fleshed everything out.

She gave life to characters who while being incredibly inspiring could also seem a little unapproachable. She showed their struggles and flaws and really helped you see how hard it was for them to follow God. I think that often authors struggle between character’s being too perfect or just making them really annoying. However, Tessa walked that balance perfectly.

I also loved how God-focused this book is. Often even Christian books do not seem to be very Christian. The characters mention God maybe once in the book, but other then that it is a Christian book only in name. However, this book showed both a just and merciful God, and it also showed how people who love God need to follow God. I think that often in “Christian” books there is a profession that is only in name, but in this book, it was clear they were doing whatever God wanted them to do.

Overall I really enjoyed this book. I think the characters were compelling and colorful, and the plot progressed nicely without any big slow points. However, I would not recommend this book to any younger kids because they are married in the book, so they do mention some things. They don’t show anything, but it is for adults, and I would recommend it to adults or at least older teens.

Traces

Welcome to the Blog Tour & Giveaway for Traces by Denise Weimer, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

 Title: Traces
Author: Denise Weimer
Publisher: BLING! Romance
Release Date: March 5, 2020
Genre: Inspirational Romantic Suspense

When a failed romance and a $500,000 prize lure Kate Carson into participating in the reality TV show, Traces, the least she expects is to pick her partner. After all, she’s the PR spokeswoman of the company that derived a thirteen-lens, rotating camera from military use and installed it atop Atlanta’s tallest skyscraper. But she never would have chosen to evade techno hunters for twenty days with “G.I. Joe.”

Stoic, ex-military Alex Mitchell is the sort of man she always vowed to avoid, while the shadows of Alex’s past cause him to spurn emotional involvement. When Kate’s insider knowledge makes her a target of someone more threatening than game show hunters, Alex offers her only hope to reveal the dark plans of proponents of The Eye.

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookDepository

Book Review:

I really enjoyed this book, though it was not my usual genre. I was so happy to find it really entertaining! It definitely kept me reading, and I was, at different points, so nervous for the characters.

I really felt for Kate, she was really relatable in the circumstances. If anything like that happened to me, I probably would react like her, super out of my depth. She definitely grew throughout the book, even though it really only spanned a few days. Kate and Alex have to learn to trust each other, although they really do not know the other.Though they were both trying, it was quite an crazy adventure they were on.

Alex was really focused, but he was such a sweet guy! He was a protector, looking out for so many. Though he was very intense and could be gruff, he and Kate began to open up to one another.

The story felt really possible, which made it even more suspenseful. It is a concept that is very relevant and a little frightening. The book was a little on the shorter side, though it did feel completed. I appreciate how she incorporated their faith, though I would wish it was a little more prominent. They were still growing in their faith. It was cool how they learned to trust more and more in God and His strength. I do hope that we get to see more of Kate and Alex, I would love to see their future.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

About the Author:

Denise Weimer writes historical and contemporary romance and romantic suspense set in her home state of Georgia. She’s authored eleven published novels and a number of novellas. As a managing editor at Smitten Historical Romance and Heritage Beacon Fiction, Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, she also helps others reach their publishing dreams. A wife and mother of two daughters, Denise always pauses for coffee, chocolate, and old houses.

CONNECT WITH DENISE: Website | Facebook | Twitter

TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a print copy of Traces and Fall Flip by Denise Weimer plus a $25 Amazon gift card!

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule shown below. Giveaway will begin at midnight March 9, 2020 and last through 11:59 PM EST on March 16, 2020. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US mailing addresses only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE

Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

A Mother’s Secret

Wow, this was such a touching book! This is the first book that I have read of Gabrielle Meyer’s and I loved it. It was such a sweet book that taught you how to forgive and trust God even when things feel crazy. 

A Mother’s Secret is a book that tells the story about a young single mom trying to raise 5 children on her own, two are her own and the other three she is fostering. She loves her kids, but it isn’t easy being a single mom especially when the past starts to creep up.

Chase Asher thought that this was going to be an easy job, get in and get out. But things do not go the way he thought it would, God has different plans for Chase. He will have to decide how he will respond and what kind of person he wants to be.

Joy Gordon was such a cool person. She didn’t grow up with a good home and so she wanted to make sure that her children never had to go through what she went through. She loved her children and wanted the best for them. It was so amazing how she tried so hard to give her kids a good home, not only providing everything they need but also giving them a loving and caring environment.

I fell in love with Chase at the beginning. He was so kind. He had made some mistakes before, but he was trying to do his best to make up for it. I really felt for him, as he learned not to let his fear of his father control him and instead do the right thing, even though it was hard.

Joy and Chase were really sweet together and they encouraged each other as they tried to work through the obstacles that were thrown at them. I loved as they did their best to show the children love and encourage them. The children were so sweet, I loved the girls from the beginning and it was so cute how the boys looked up to Chase. 

This book reminded me to trust God even when life feels crazy. Joy and Chase had to figure out what they would do when it doesn’t look like things will work out. But in the end they learn that God is faithful. 

I am so glad that I read this book. It had a wonderful story with lovely characters. A Mother’s Secret also taught me lessons. I am so excited to read more of Gabrielle Meyer books. I give this book 5 stars!

A Dream Within a Dream

    Patricia Maclachlan is one of my favorite authors. All of her books have a simple sweetness, a sort of whimsical wisdom. So I was super excited to see a new book of hers. This was another fun, sweet story. Louisiana and her brother Theo are staying with their family for the summer. While they are there, they learn about each other and their family.

    Their family is changing. Diseases is taking root. New friends are appearing. Louisa learns about the island in a new way, she meets the people who make it special.

    This is a book for almost everyone. It is a children’s book, so kids can read it. Most likely after age 8 or so. But it is touching and sweet for anyone.

The Boy Next Story

    I was super excited for this book! Having read and loved the first book in this Bookish Boyfriends series, A Date With Mr. Darcy, I was ready to learn more about Rory and her book, Little Women.. The concept of the series, a amazing teacher giving books that parallel life, is totally something I love.

    Rory, Aurora, Campbell is the younger sister of our first heroine, Merri. But she is not a lot like her sister, she is sarcastic, independent, artistic, and desperately in love with their next-door neighbor, Toby, who also happens to be one of Merri’s best friends.

    In this book, we learn a lot about Rory, her wishes, hopes, insecurities, and her story. She grows from her hiding her feelings, to expressing herself through her art, and to growing closer to her sisters. I really enjoyed seeing the similarities and differences between her life and Little Women. Rory and Toby were super cute. I really like when the couple are friends first, and when they really get to know each other first. It was also nice to see all the characters from the first book.

    I would recommend this book, though after reading the first one, to readers in their teens. It is clean and fun. It is a romantic coming- of-age story with a little magic!

The Last Voyage of Poe Blythe

The Last Voyage of Poe Blythe by Ally Condie, is a book that I got through my local library’s Blind Date with a Book program. It is a super cool idea, covering a book’s cover and putting a little description on it. I was intrigued by the description of sci-fi and REVENGE (it was all in caps on the paper too).

    This book fit the description, The main character, Poe Blythe, is a inventor who is seeking only revenge. Revenge on those who killed her one love, the only one she truly cared about. After gaining leadership of a mining ship, her careful plans and confident understanding of herself began to slip.

    One of Poe’s taglines are “Nothing left to lose”. She has decided that her only goal is survival and revenge. Yet, throughout the book, she finds herself making choices for others. Her understanding of the people around her and their motives begin to change her worldview.

    I thought that this was an interesting book. It was a little angsty for me, a lot of betrayal and suspense, but overall I enjoyed it. It is a darker book, meant for an audience of older teens. It is sci-fi and adventure. I would recommend it for slightly older readers, maybe high school.

The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone

The Extremely Inconvenient Adventures of Bronte Mettlestone is a fun whimsical adventure. A young girl, who has lived with her aunt and butler for the last ten years of her life, suddenly learns of her parents’ death. In their will, they send her on a journey across the lands to visit her aunts. Along the way, she has different little adventures and learns about her family.

    Bronte was a very practical heroine. She was smart and polite. I enjoyed seeing her in different settings and circumstances. All of her aunts, and all the other characters she met along the way, were strikingly different from one another and oddly quirky.

    This is a book of magic and mysteries. There are mythical creatures and amazing abilities. It is book originally catered to younger readers, late elementary age. It is fun and I would recommend it to readers 10 and up.