Book Reviews, His Word

The Rise of the Prophet – Book Review

Hello dear readers!

Today’s the day…I have another book review for you.

The Rise of the Prophet

Today, I’m telling you about a book called “The Rise of the Prophet” by Rodney Coe.

In The Rise of the Prophet, Rodney has written a curious and thought-provoking book.

While I enjoyed the storyline and the plot, I had difficulty following the characters. The characters were many in number, in addition to numerous groups of people.

There was a lot going on in this book. For me, this was not an easy read, but rather, required focus and concentration. With three school-aged kids always underfoot in my home this was hard to find.

I believe this book is an awesome fictional resource for someone who may be seeking more information about Christianity or is new in their faith. In my opinion, it might even be a great read for a history buff, as they would likely have the skill-set to follow along with the many characters and happenings.

Included in the back of the book is a glossary of the people and characters, as well as a map of the areas written about. This was very helpful, as there was a lot to keep track of.

Overall, this was not one of my favorite books; however, I believe it has the potential to impact many people.

Book Reviews

Annabel Lee – Book Review

Here’s my disclaimer – I’ve never met a book I didn’t like. That could be because I’m super choosy about what I read. This book, Annabel Lee (a Coffey & Hill novel), which released today, simply KNOCKED MY SOCKS OFF, despite the fact that I don’t typically read Christian fiction.

From one look at the front cover, to the synopsis on the back cover, I was hooked.

I had not heard of Mike Nappa before reading this book, but you can bet I’m going to find his other stuff. Pronto. His Amazon author page reveals that not only does he write fiction novels, he also writes devotions and non-fiction on family relationships.

I started Annabel Lee on a Thursday and had it finished by Sunday. It was that good. I think my husband may have been a bit annoyed with me because I pretty much refused to interact with anyone until I finished reading this book.

Annabel Lee

This gem has all of the makings of an outstanding book:

Suspense?  √

Subtle romantic themes?  √

Faith element?  √

Good vs. Evil?  √

Mike had me on the edge of my seat as, chapter upon chapter, I learned more about Annabel Lee, her enigmatic uncle, a PI named Trudi, and Trudi’s ex-husband Samuel.

As each page unfolded into the next, I was drawn in more deeply to the elusive world of Annabel Lee and her supporting cast of characters.

Why did her uncle lock her in an underground shelter? And then further, why did he instruct her not to open the door to anyone – unless they had the secret code?

Having never attended school, how was she so intelligent and fluent in so many languages?

What is her tie to Trudi and Samuel?

Why is that dog so bloody terrifying and why was it trained to be a killer?

Who is the mysterious and eccentric Dr. Smith and why does he keep following Trudi, Samuel, and The Mute? What is his tie to all of this?

I became so enmeshed in the plot and characters in this book that I began to feel as though I was a witness to the events. That I was present for the conversations, the battles, the crucial decisions, and even an insider to the private thoughts of two ex-lovers who clearly still have feelings for one another.

As Mike revealed little by little, I began to see the plot thickening and to feel the tension. Dr. Smith had plenty to gain by finding Annabel Lee. And the others were clearly doing their best to protect her from his clutches – before they even knew why he wanted her so desperately.

This was, by far, one of the best fiction stories I’ve read in a long time. Mike has another Coffey & Hill novel, The Raven, releasing in the fall of this year. I’ll be in line to get that before it hits the shelves.

Book Reviews

The End of The World – Book Review

Not too long ago, I was provided with a copy of this book to read and review. You can find more details on Amazon.

This book quite literally fell in my lap. I loved that I had not heard anything about this book prior to reading it, as it allowed me to read with a completely open mind. From the moment I finished the first chapter, until I read the final page, I was enthralled. Amy’s writing style is easy to follow, yet captivating.

While I don’t often read fiction, I’m so glad this book made it’s way to me. I devoured this book in just a few sittings. When I finished the book, I looked at my husband and said, “Well, now what?” To which he replied, “Um, you could talk to your husband.” Apparently I had been ignoring him, and the kids, and the housework…lol.

While the overall content has the potential to be a trigger for some, it was presented in such a way as to demonstrate healing.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a story demonstrating God’s love and grace and redemption.

Book Reviews, His Word

Wild in the Hollow – Book Review

Recently, I was given the opportunity to read and review an author’s debut novel. Amber C. Haines has given us a true gift in her memoir entitled, “Wild in the Hollow.” This is Amber’s story of how she came to know a God who relentlessly pursues each one of us.

Amber’s story begins much the same way mine does – in a quest for happiness in the midst of brokenness, in the arms of one ‘love’ after another, in the bottom of a bottle. Her story is my story. Her brokenness calls to me. Her raw honesty haunts me and endears me to her at the same time.

Hers is a story of salvation and repentance and redemption. Hers is a story we can all relate to. With our busted self-esteem, mutilated hearts, severed family ties, broken society, we can all use the refreshing realness of a story that shows how God meets us in our shattered lives. He never stops loving us. He unceasingly demonstrates his desire that we would all be reconciled to His Father’s heart for each of us.

Amber’s transgression haunted me. And then her confession freed me.

Her words reached places of me that I had long forgotten about.

I cannot remember the last time a story moved me the way this story has. I laughed and I wept and I smiled and I hurt and I found myself praying right along with Amber.

Her story reminds me that, when it seems there is nothing to hope for, there is still good in the world. There are still pockets of community in the world reminiscent of days gone by. There are still friends that mimic family – His word tells us in Proverbs that, “Friends come and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family.”

In Chapter 12, Amber shares her struggle of control. This is one area that is a challenge for me as well. In this chapter, she says, “Self-control is a rest in him and his way, and all other striving is an illusion of control that divided me in three, mind from body and soul. Dropping the illusion propelled me toward healing.” God is still working within me in this area. There have been more times than I would like to recall, in which God has had to pry my fingers away from a situation in order for Him to do His good work. Thankfully, I am learning to let go.

Amber’s words are like a breath of fresh air; like waves on the ocean, rumbling and tumbling the water; like a breeze rustling the leaves of the trees. Amber’s words will stay with me long after I write this review. This will be a book I return to from time to time. If nothing else, to be reminded that I’m not alone on this messy, broken, beautiful journey home to His loving arms.

Book Reviews, Kids/Parenting

Books for Kids!

As many of you know, one of the things I love to do is read and review books for you all. Recently though, I was overjoyed because my kids were granted the opportunity to read and review their own books.

So, this is for all of the kids out there.

Rob Elliott and Revell Publishing have brought us yet another great joke book for kids. There are two editions: Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Boys and Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Girls.

LOL for Boys LOL for Girls

My kids have gotten accustomed to me receiving books in the mail to read and review. So, when a package came with books in it for them, they were beyond excited.

From the moment they tore open the envelope more than a month ago, to as recently as this past weekend, my two have LOVED these books. They have accompanied us on van trips to summer camp, to the grocery store, and they’ve even just sat on the couch together, sharing jokes and making memories.

Each page features a joke, the beginning of an illustration that goes along with the joke, and suggestions on how to finish the illustration. The jokes are clean and in good humor. I had no worries about the content of the jokes and I was perfectly fine with just handing the books over to the kids and letting them go on their merry way.

The best {and worst} thing about these books is that after the 3rd day of the kids reading them to me, I was ready to take them away! 🙂  I had had enough jokes! BUT, I didn’t do it. I let them continue to ask me, “Mom, what’s the worst thing to leave home without?” To which I replied, “I don’t know.” Then, laughing, they both said in unison, “THIS BOOK!”

We will be taking a road trip at the end of July and I can guarantee you that these books will be packed for the van ride. Even though they’ve read through all of the jokes already, they haven’t completed the illustrations. That will provide for hours of more enjoyment and entertainment.

I would highly recommend these books to all parents of school-age children.