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Showing posts from June, 2012

Big Announcement!

Thursday evening I interviewed for The Christian Manifesto. They are a On-line magazine that reviews books, films, music in the Christian culture. I've been hired to write reviews on non-fiction books, specifically theology, textual criticism, Biblical history, etc. I am very humbled---albeit excited about this opportunity!
After 5 years of writing and posting reviews on my own blogs, I will be writing reviews for a specific site hosted by an organization. Professionalism and comradely and communication will be important factors in success. My prayer is that the Lord will guide me every step and every sentence of the way.
I am not planning to end my blogs. I will continue to write and post reviews on the following blogs I author.
A Garden of Books
Impressions In Ink
as well as this current blog.
You can also find me on Goodreads.
And Twitter
And Facebook.

Thank you!

July 4th, Independence Day, Holiday

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I'll be taking the next several days off for holiday. We have family coming to visit for a few days. Will be trying to relax (despite the heat in north Texas.)
Hoping your holiday will be safe and happy!

Book Review: The Thorn, The Rose Trilogy Book One by Beverly Lewis

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Rose Kaufman and her parents live as Old Order Amish in southern Lancaster county Pennsylvania. She has an older sister named Hannah that is married to an Englisher and they have a young daughter named Mattie Sue. Hannah and her husband Brandon do not live as the Amish. Brandon is repugnant towards Hannah's family and the Amish world. In this first book of The Rose Trilogy, Hannah (nick-named Hen) and her husband are at odds against each other. As Mattie Sue grows, Hen sees the error in marrying an Englisher and in leaving the Amish world behind. Rose is smitten, although she does not acknowledge it, to a boy named Nick, who was adopted in to the Amish world by their Bishop. Nick is at odds with this new lifestyle, because he has experienced the "other" life.
The story expounds on choices that sometimes lead to results that are life-altering----especially in choosing life-mates. 

I will probably be tar and feathered but I just did not care for this book. Sorry to all …

Book Review: Chasing The Sun, Land Of The Lone Star Book One by Tracie Peterson

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Hannah Dandridge is a young woman in her mid-twenties living with her father and younger siblings in north Texas. Their ranch is just north of Dallas. They left Mississippi and came to Texas just before the Civil War, in order for her father to make a "new life" away from painful memories. When the book begins it is 1863, Hannah is concerned because her father had gone back to Mississippi, and after a lengthy time she has not yet heard from him. Knowing that it is possible that he has been taken by the northern troops, worries Hannah even more. What if his absence is prolonged? Hannah is responsible for her younger siblings and the running of the ranch. Mr. Lockhart is her father's business partner. Hannah tries to respect his decisions; yet she does not like him. As the story progresses Mr. Lockhart becomes increasingly more difficult for Hannah to reason with. Early in the book we are introduced to a wounded Veteran Will Barnett. He is a handsome man who is not a stra…

Book Blogger Hop June 22-28, 2012

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Book Blogger Hop is the creation of Crazy-for-Books.

This weeks question is, "Do you immediately write a review upon finishing a book or do you wait and write multiple reviews at once?"
I rarely write a review as soon as I finish a book. I also rarely write more than 2 reviews in 1 day.
I do not allow more than a few days in between finishing a book and writing the review. Even though I take notes on all books I read, it's better to write the review sooner than later, while the book is still fresh in my mind.
Writing reviews, especially on non-fiction books takes me much longer than a review on a fiction book.
Non-fiction requires a more serious tone. I must have a full understanding of the content of what I read. I want to make sure I do not post a review that is not in-line with what the author wrote. I will often go back to the page to re-read what the author wrote, so I will not say something the author did not say.
I want to make sure I remain tactful as well. I ma…

Friendship Friday #24--Week of June 22, 2012

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This weeks questions are:
"What is something new you've recently learned about blogging?"
"What is a great tip that you'd like to share?"
"Is there a site you would like to recommend about blogging?"
"Have you written an article about blogging that you'd like to link up?"

I'm only able to answer the first 2 questions as I do not visit sites with blogging tips, nor have I written an article about blogging.
Yes, I've come across blogs that offer tips, but do not visit them regularly.

The best advice I can give about blogging is to continue to learn and be teachable in blogging. Meaning as in most things in life---blogging evolves and grows, and the blogger must be willing to stretch their creativity, and be willing to make changes if need be. Read other blogs, pay attention to their lay-out, social abilities and ideas, content, and writing style. A blog should reflect the person who created it and maintains it, it should not b…

Book Review: Canon Revisited, Establishing The Origins And Authority of the New Testament Books by Michael J. Kruger

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"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me." John 10:27 ESV

In the synopsis given by Christian Book it explains this is a book that is a "evangelical introduction to the New Testament canon...and is for use in seminary and college classrooms, and for pastors and educated lay leaders." I don't usually give a quote from Christian Book but it is an important quote that should be weighed before reading this book.
I  am neither of the before mentioned people; yet I feel I am well-read, and more than that I enjoy a challenge.

Michael J. Kruger's aim in Canon Revisited is brought forth in the preface:
1. "When and how these New Testament books were recognized as Canonical."
2. "How we know these books are Canonical."
Kruger wanted he and his seminary students to know, "whether Christianity had adequate grounds to claim that these 27 books were the right ones."
There have been several books written, including apocr…

Book Review: My God and I, A Spiritual Memoir by Lewis B. Smedes

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During a dark time in my life, I read Lewis B. Smedes book Forgive and Forget: Healing the Hurts We Don't Deserve. Smedes has had a special place in my heart since then. When I saw his memoir I knew I had to read it!

The first things that are noticeable about Smedes' writing is his transparency, humility and gentleness. He does not come across as a pastor and writer who presumes to know all the answers and I respect that greatly. He gently and humbly shares from his own life. He does not hide behind a mask of a perfect and unrealistic Christian life. He freely shares both his dreary melancholy days, and his roses and sunshine days. By the end of the book I had tears in my eyes because of a man who was willing to reveal his inner-self.
Smedes begins his story with a short biography of his parents. Both his parents were from the Netherlands. His mother's father was Mennonite and his mother of reformed faith. Their story of how they met was interesting in that they were of …

Problems With Blogger

Is there anyone else having problems with Blogger today?

Book Review: Following Jesus, Biblical Reflections on Discipleship by N.T. Wright

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In Following Jesus, N.T. Wright has written 12 chapters divided in to two sections.
The first section holds 6 chapters and is entitled---Looking To Jesus. In this section he delivers short messages from Hebrews, Colossians, Matthew, John, Mark and Revelation. These chapters came from his sermons previously given at Lichfield Cathedral.
The second section entitled---A Living Sacrifice, which also holds 6 chapters. These short chapters are from various areas in the Bible, they were from sermons given at an Oxford Church. 
In each of these chapters the main thrust or theme is "what it means to truly follow Jesus today." Since we are to follow Jesus in order to be his disciple, how are we to do this?

This is the first book I've read by N.T. Wright. In my new stack of books, recently borrowed from the library, is another book written by him---After You Believe, Why Christian Character Matters.

I loved this book!
What I noticed forefront is even though the author is a th…

My First Book Signing Event, Tosca Lee and Ted Dekker

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Last night I went to my first book signing event, hosted at Mardel's Christian book store in Arlington, Texas.
Tosca Lee and Ted Dekker were signing books for their Book of Mortals Book Series.
My granddaughter and I arrived early---about 4:30 P.M., within 30 minutes we were in line for the event. We stood in line for over an hour until the event began at 6:15 P.M. I was happy to say I was near the front of the line. While waiting I visited with a lady next to me who was a first grade teacher at an Arlington elementary school and a fan of Ted Dekker's.  I appreciated the Mardel's book store employee that allowed 1 person or group at a time to approach the book signing table, as well as she took a photograph for those needing help with this. To my knowledge everything went smoothly.
As an additional bonus, I noticed a sweet faced lady a bit behind me in-line, a fellow blogger named Lena Nelson Dooley. I recognized her face from her blog photo and Facebook photo and I ginger…

One Question Friday, From Thoughts That Move, June 8, 2012

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This Fridays question:
Would you rather----"end each day reading a novel that is sure to give you freaky dreams?
or
Start each day reading a novel with yawn inspiring prose and lacking big time in the plot department?"

If given full reign to make a choice I would choose neither. But, since I should choose 1 question I would lean towards the later.
I have a big and active imagination and I can fill-in and create "my own" story from one that I felt was boring. I can take what little is given and morph the story in to one I do love and enjoy. Actually that's the easy part, creating and concocting my own story. It's also more fun!

If It's Friday, It's Book Blogger Hop! June 8, 2012

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This weeks question is:
If you were to write a book what type of book would you write?

Historical fiction. 
I love 1930's depression era stories and the World War II years. I love the music, clothing, cars. I love those years before television or other technology took away from actually having long conversations in a porch swing. I especially love stories where people against difficulty and strife, persevere. I am aware that these were years of drought, little money and sometimes little food, job losses, displacement of families, fear of war and then war itself. But, it is through a great storm that the individual or characters in a book, evolve in to either a determination to persevere, or to give-up and fade away.

Book Review: A Belmont Mansion Series Book #1, A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander

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Claire Elise Laurent is a young woman that is an artist living in New Orleans with her widowed father. The time period is post Civil War. Claire is an artist like her mother was. Her father is an art broker. 
Claire is forced to flee New Orleans, she must make a trip alone to Nashville, Tennessee. Nashville has been sorely bruised by the Civil War. While living in New Orleans Claire saw little of the wars devastation. Shortly after arriving Claire's original plan was thwarted. She instead interviews for a job at the ethereal Belmont Mansion. She also meets the handsome bachelor attorney with a dream of being the owner of a horse farm, Sutton Monroe.
Claire is a naive, sheltered, beautiful, damsel in distress character.  
Sutton Monroe is an intelligent, handsome, all-things southern type gentleman.
Claire's situation makes for an interesting premise, and I liked it that her talent was in art; but I have a problem with damsels in distress. I know this is probably a personali…

Book Review: Son Of The Underground, The Story Of Isaac Liu, Son Of Brother Yun, The Heavenly Man by Isaac Liu with Albrecht Kaul

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Isaac Liu's father was an "enemy of the state." His father was an evangelist and preacher in communist China. His parents as well as Isaac's paternal grandmother loved and worshiped Jesus. Isaac's grandmother he called Nai Nai, even in her old age she would walk many miles to neighboring villages for prayer meetings and worship. Nai Nai would take her grandson Isaac with her. Isaac's mother worked in the fields and his father was often in jail for failure to stop evangelizing others to Jesus. Nai Nai would tell Isaac, "Much prayer, much power-little prayer, little power. Prayer equals power." Isaac grew up with a family that lived their faith in a country that was hostile and abusive to them. They persevered and worked tirelessly to spread the Gospel message of Jesus. China was a country not only of communism, but of belief in evil spirits, bad luck, fate, and occult worship. Yet, Isaac's tiny Nai Nai would in God's strength and power renou…

Book Blogger Hop! For Week of June 1-7, 2012

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Since it is Friday, its Book Blogger Hop. This weekly post was created by:
http://crazy-for-books.com/



BEA stands for Book Expo America.
Formerly called Book Blogger Convention.

The question for this week has me stumped and I'm cramming for an answer.

What upcoming Releases are you most looking forward to? 

There is one book that I've not read yet that a blogger friend has been talking about over at http://www.passagestothepast.com/
The name of the book is Bring Up The Bodies by Hilary Mantel. This is a book about Anne Boelyn. This book was released in early May.
The following books have not been released yet.
A Dangerous Inheritance by Allison Weir.
The Shadow Queen by Rebecca Dean.
Elizabeth and Essex by Lytton Strachey.
The Hole In Our Holiness: Filling the Gap Between Gospel Passion and the Pursuit of Godliness by Kevin De Young 
Mortal Fire by C.F. Dunn


My Answer---From Moving Thoughts Friday!

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Moving Thoughts Friday is a post Wendy Paine @
http://thoughtsthatmove.blogspot.com/
Every Friday she posts a question for discussion. Some bloggers answer in her comment box, I usually need more space.
Her question for this Friday is:

"If you could carry only one thing in your pocket for the rest of you life what would it be?"

Even when I was a little girl I had a problem with that "one thing." I remember when I was a little girl my grandmother and I shopped at a grocery store and I wanted a toy or book. She asked me to pick just "one thing." In my tiny heart I did not know that she probably did not really have the money for my trivial desire. But, I remember then thinking, I could not decide on that "one thing." 
So, in true form with my "one thing" handicap. Other than my Burt's Bees lip balm, I would have a photograph of my family in my pocket. To look at a photograph of my mother, or daddy, or husband, or sons or daughter in-la…

Friendship Friday Blog Hop # 21, For Week of June 1, 2012

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What's the best blog post that you've read this week? 
What made it so special?


This is a great question for me in that I visited all the blogs I follow earlier in this week. I'm hoping I can name a few of them, since I found more than one, and they are listed in order of my favorites!

1. Katy Pent my friend from Discovery House Publishers wrote a great post this past week: Her blog is Pursuing The Wind. 
She wrote a post dated April 8 entitled, What About Me.
http://www.pursuingthewind.blogspot.com/2012/04/what-about-me.html
In her post she wrote about self-centeredness and the desire to want to rule our lives, and not follow God's will and direction and timing in our life. So, the statement we've all heard, "it's not about me, it is about God." katy elaborated on in her post. It really spoke to me and I appreciate her transparency. 

2. P.J. Cockrell wrote a post dated May 26 entitled, The Heart of Discipleship.
http://pjcockrell.wordpress.com/2012/05/26/7…