The Dawn of Christmas – Book Review and Giveaway

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I had the privilege to read Cindy Woodsmall’s latest book, The Dawn of Christmas, over the Christmas break.

Cindy takes the reader to the center of Amish Country in this heartwarming tale through the eyes of Sadie. On the eve of her wedding she is faced with a difficult decision, marry a man who lies or face living her life alone? Sadie’s choice takes her away from her family, but is brought back later in order to please her parents. Once she returns she discovers an injured man, Levi, and must determine whether a friendship with him is safe. As their friendship grows the question then changes to whether either one of them is really ready to open up to the possibility of love. Will Sadie’s ex-fiancé come back into the picture and ruin everything?

This is a fantastic story with such lovable characters that you are swept away within a few pages. I would recommend picking up this book for a snowy day.

(Click here to read Chapter One)

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In light of the new study that will be starting next week at Maryland Community Church and highlighted on my Monday and Wednesday blogs, I am going to be giving away 2 copies of the book, What Happens When Women Say Yes to God. All you need to do to enter is leave a comment on my blog and/or sign up to follow my blog all this week. I will announce the winners on Friday, January 3rd.

The Women of Christmas – Book Review

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Liz Curtis Higgs has done it again with her latest book, The Women of Christmas. As Christmas is quickly approaching, this book allows you to experience the season through Elizabeth, Mary and Anna.

In typical Liz fashion, she not only brings these characters off the pages of the Bible, but shows the reader how it applies to her life. She takes a close look at these three women and scriptures that you have read over but missed some details. Liz does an excellent job of shedding light on these treasures. There are even study questions included in the back of the book to take the study deeper.

I highly recommend you purchasing this book and reading it to prepare your heart for the celebration of Christ’s birth.

Preview Chapter One

Blessings for the Evening – Book Review

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I am always looking for a great devotional for myself as well as for gifts. Therefore, when I had the opportunity to read and review Susie Larson’s devotional Blessings for the Evening, I was thrilled.

I love how Susie switched up the typical devotional by focusing on night, as your day is drawing to a close. It is a great way to replace the stress of the day with God’s peace.

Each devotion is placed over a beautiful picture. There is a scripture and short reading for each evening. The combination of the scripture, reading and picture brings about such peace and comfort. The reader gets a real sense of discovering God’s presence through this book.

I would definitely recommend this book as we enter into the Christmas season for yourself or a loved one.

Friend Friday

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Dear friend, I am so glad that you could come over today and spend a little time with me. I have my cup of coffee and I am ready to visit with you.

I have received several suggestions for topics for my Friend Fridays. Today, it seems fitting to share a devotional book with you, Take Flight! A Sisterchicks’ Devotional by Robin Jones Gunn and Cindy Hannan.

These two ladies have written several Sisterchicks fiction books and decided that God was leading them to share grace stories in a devotional for women. Thus, Take Flight! was created.

Each devotion starts out with a quote from a character in a Sisterchicks novel. This leads to a real life story of grace, called “From Robin’s Nest”. Cindy then shares questions, wisdom, scriptures to examine and even space for journaling in the section, “From Cindy’s Perch”. Then it ends with Sisterchickin’ Suggestions – an activity to apply what has been discussed in the devotion. I absolutely loved this part. It takes the devotion beyond observation and interpretation to applying it to your life.

This short devotional would make a great gift for the “sisterchicks” in your life. Whether you have read the Sisterchicks books or not, I would highly recommend this great little book.

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** Don’t forget, if you have a topic that you would like discussed on the Friend Fridays, please let me know. I am looking forward to hearing from you.

For Every Season – Book Review

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For this fiction Friday I wanted to share with you For Every Season, the latest book by Cindy Woodsmall. This happens to be the third book in her Amish Vines and Orchards series.

Rhoda, Jacob, Samuel and a few others from Pennsylvania have ventured to Maine to start the orchard and a new Amish community. They all thought the work on the old orchard and grounds would be their only concern. However, Jacob’s past keeps surfacing and needing to be dealt with. His absence leaves a hole in the community and Rhoda’s heart. While he’s gone, she is working solely with his brother, Samuel. Their feelings for one another start to push beyond a working relationship. However, Rhoda wouldn’t do anything to hurt the family or this business. As she is searching for what God has truly called her to be will her true feelings ever surface?

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I would recommend you add this book to your wish list as the weather begins to change. It’s wonderful to curl up with a good book and a cup of coffee on a chilly day.

Click here to read the first chapter of this fabulous book.

The Secret Keeper – Book Review

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Ever feel like you were born at the wrong place or the wrong time? This is exactly how Jenny Burns feels in The Secret Keeper by Beverly Lewis. It is the latest book in the Home to Hickory Hollow series.

Jenny has known from a young age that she just didn’t fit in. After lots of research and befriending Marnie from Hickory Hollow, Jenny decides to take the plunge and become Amish. To accomplish this, she must pass the Proving – showing the elders that she has learned their language, beliefs and ways. This proves to be more difficult than Jenny imagines. Some of the people in the community are not excited to have a seeker among them. Will this prove to be too difficult for Jenny? Will keeping a secret cause her to have to leave Hickory Hollow?

I loved the delightful characters in this book. I would highly recommend this book. It is great to curl up with on a cool, crisp fall weekend.

Unforeseeable – Book Review

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I have read the first two books in the Road to Kingdom series by Nancy Mehl, so when I had the opportunity to read and review the latest book, Unforeseeable, I was thrilled.

Callie Hoffman’s life is all falling into place in Kingdom. She loves working in the local restaurant with her friend, LIzzie and is engaged to the love of her life, Levi, the new pastor. However, when a body is discovered just outside of Kingdom that is connected to a serial killer, things begin to spiral out of control.

Will this mystery bring more questions than answers? Is there some connection between the case and Cassie? Will Callie’s search for answers put her engagement and life in jeopardy?

Nancy takes the reader back to the delightful, secluded town of Kingdom. There are several familiar characters as well as a few new ones. It is not necessary to read the first two books before jumping into the series. However, once you have read one, you will want to read the others.

Like Nancy’s other Road to Kingdom books, I would highly recommend, Unforeseeable. It keeps you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.

Forever Friday – Book Review

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The book I want to tell you about today is Forever Friday by Timothy Lewis. This is the first book I have read by this author, so I didn’t know what to expect, but I was intrigued by the title.

In the summer of 2006, owner of an estate-sale business, Adam, discovered quite a treasure when going through leftover belongings of the Alexander estate. It is an album of postcards.

However, these are not your typical tourist postcards, with the cheesy, “wish you were here,” scrolled across the back. These postcards document a miraculous love between Gabe and Pearl Alexander. Gabe sent Pearl a love poem on a postcard every Friday for 60 years. The idea of this kind of love intrigued recently divorced, Adam. He longs to not only find out more about this couple, but also what their secret to lasting love. How did it work for them and not him?

Through the course of this book, Adam discovers lots of information, but does he unearth the answer to his burning question?

I thought Timothy did a great job with this heart warming story in Forever Friday and I would recommend it. If you would like a sneak peek at this book, click here to download the first chapter.

The Letters – Book Review

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I have another great book that I would like to share with you today, The Letters by Suzanne Woods Fisher.

The main character in The Letters, Rose Schrock has had a difficult life. Through many trials and tragedies, she has found herself trying to be a single-mom to four children, take care of her farm and aging mother-in-law and provide for the family. The burdens she bears herself.

In the process of “righting” wrongs, Rose decides to open an Amish bed and breakfast, utilizing their basement with a private entrance. This brings Delia Stoltz into the Schrock family’s lives. She is dealing with several of her own personal issues and needs a quiet retreat. The Eagle Hill Inn is just the answer.

The characters and situations in The Letters are so dynamic and engaging. Suzanne Woods Fisher has an incredible way of drawing the reader into her novels. This is why I keep returning to her books. I highly recommend The Letters.