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Monday, December 28, 2015

Waiting Here For You: An Advent Journey of Hope

Louie Giglio is the pastor of Passion City Church in Atlanta, GA and the founder of Passion Conferences, a global movement uniting university students to live for the fame of Jesus.  With a desire to elevate God's glory above all else, Louie has also authored The Air I Breathe, i Am Not, But I Know I Am, and Indescribable, which was co-authored with Grammy Award winner Matt Redman.  Louie and his wife, Shelley, live in Atlanta, GA.

You can connect with Louie at as well as on Twitter.

Waiting Here for You helps us anticipate rather than dread the busy season of Advent and Christmas.
Life is full of waiting – we can’t escape it. We find ourselves in the middle of it every day – waiting on a prognosis to be given…a verdict to be reached…a promotion to be announced. And in these seasons of waiting that anxiety, desperation and hopelessness creep in.
Waiting Here For You takes us through the advent – the season of waiting. In it we see the story of the coming of Jesus. It teaches us that waiting is the means God often uses to carry his plans in our lives. And it brings us back to the truth that our waiting is never wasted when we are waiting on God.
Join pastor and author Louie Giglio and take hold of the chance to uncover the vast hope offered through the journey of Advent. Find peace and encouragement for your soul as anticipation leads toward celebration!
Waiting is not wasted when it is waiting with the Lord.
My Thoughts:
I was blessed by using Waiting Here for You as my devotional focus during this past Advent season.  The book is organized into daily readings beginning with November 26th and ending December 24th.  Each reading begins with Scripture and is followed by a short Reflection from Louie and ends with a Hymn for Meditation and Prayer guide.  Black and white Winter scenes are interspersed throughout the book.  Louie's reflections and Scripture passages focus on the theme of waiting and the constant, faithful nature of God.  While Waiting Here for You is written specifically as an Advent resource, I think it would be perfect as a devotional guide for the month of January to begin the New Year in anticipation of great things from God.  Get yours today!
*I received a complimentary copy of the book for the purpose of review from the publisher.
Happy Reading Ya'll,

The Wedding Chapel

About the author: 

Rachel Hauck is an award-winning, best selling author of critically acclaimed novels such as The Wedding DressLove Starts with Elle, and Once Upon A Prince. She also penned the Songbird Novels with multi-platinum recording artist, Sara Evans. Booklist named their novel, Softly and Tenderly, one of 2011 Top Ten Inspirationals. She serves on the Executive Board for American Christian Fiction Writers and is a mentor and book therapist at My Book Therapy, and conference speaker. Rachel lives in central Florida with her husband and pets.

Connect with Rachel: websiteTwitterFacebook

About the book: 

The Wedding Chapel (Zondervan, November 2015)

For sixty years, a wedding chapel sat silent, waiting for love. But times have changed and the hour has come when it just might be too late.

Retired hall-of-fame football coach Jimmy "Coach" Westbrook never imagined anything would come of his labor of love---the wedding chapel he built for Collette Greer, the woman he fell for back in '49. But now an offer has come to turn the chapel into what it was meant to be---a place for love---and Jimmy sees no reason to hang onto his dream any longer.

Photographer Taylor Branson is trying to make a life for herself in New York. Leaving her hometown of Heart's Bend, Tennessee, she put a lot of things behind her, including her family's abysmal marriage rate. But love surprises her when she falls head-over-heels for Jack Forester, a top ad man. Their whirlwind romance results in an elopement, and a mountain of doubt. Jack, while genuine in his love for Taylor, can never seem to overcome his own demons to find the words of his heart.

When Taylor takes an assignment in Heart's Bend, the job does more than send her back to her hometown, but into a world of family secrets buried beneath the sands of time.

When Taylor's journey intersects with Coach's, they rediscover the heartbeat of their dreams and that the love they long to hold is right in front of them. And worth every waiting moment.

Purchase a copy:

To see what others are saying about the book, you can visit HERE.

My Thoughts:
The Wedding Chapel is the first book by Rachel Hauck that I've read.  To say the least, I was blown away!  Hauck's cast of characters and the way their lives intertwined with one another make for a very compelling read.  The stories of Taylor and Jack, Jimmy and Collette, Peg and the place of Heart's Bend, TN are filled with crises of faith, love, hope and the beauty of reconciliation.  Hauck keeps readers riveted and turning pages with a thread of suspense and masterfully tells the story of a wedding chapel hid away in TN.  The revelations are surprising as Hauck tells the story switching flawlessly between the past and the present.  Don't miss this endearing story!  Your heart will be encouraged.

*I was provided a complimentary copy of the book by the publisher for the purpose of providing an honest review.

The Wedding Chapel Rachel Hauck

Happy Reading Ya'll,

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Delighting in God

A.W. Tozer  (1897-1963) began his lifelong pursuit of God at the age of seventeen, after hearing a street preacher in Akron, Ohio.  Tozer was a self-taught theologian, pastor, and writer whose powerful words continue to grip the intellect and stir the soul of today's believer.  He authored more than 40 books.  The Pursuit of God and The Knowledge of the Holy are considered modern devotional classics.

Get more Tozer information and quotes at

Understand your life's purpose by better understanding God.

"My worship grows and grows as my perception of God grows.  God cannot grow.  My perception of God grows as I experience Him day after day.  I should be more capable of worshiping God today than I was ten or twenty years ago."

Delighting in God is the message A.W. Tozer intended to be the follow-up to The Knowledge of the Holy.  He demonstrates how the attributes of God -  those things God has revealed about himself - are a way to understand the Christian life of worship and service.  Because we were created in the image of God, to understand who we are, we need to understand who God is and allow His character and nature to be reflected through us.  

We are here to serve and adore Him, and we can only fulfill that role by acknowledging who He is. This is the essence of the Christian life and the source of all our fulfillment, joy, and comfort.

My Thoughts:
Compiled and edited by James L. Snyder (a recognized authority on the life and ministry of A.W. Tozer),  Snyder has been given the rights from the A.W. Tozer estate to produce new books derived from over four hundred never-before-published audiotapes.  Delighting in God is the compilation of sermons Tozer preached after the publication of The Knowledge of the Holy.  Snyder says this in his introduction:
"The purpose of this book is to stir up your heart with a passion for God that will lead you into following hard after God, even disrupt those who are content with their current passion for God.  If someone reads this book and is deeply disturbed, such that they seek God with a passion that cannot be satisfied apart from God, this book will have met its goal."
After reading the book devotionally over the past several weeks, I can say that the book does indeed meet the goal of stirring up the passions of the heart for God.  Snyder has adeptly taken the words and thoughts of Tozer and arranged them for the reader and expounded thoroughly on Tozer's thought that "what we think about God infiltrates every aspect of our lives".  Delighting in God offers a concise and deep look into one's perception of God by exploring our perception of God's perfection, grace, mercy and delves into how our perception of God affects our prayer life and relationship with God and with others.
The book is not lengthy so as to overwhelm, nor is it filled with lofty language that is hard to understand.  Tozer's passion was that others know God and his heart comes through in a more conversational style rather than a "preachy" treatise and through a book that is devotional in nature.

*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

The Five Times I Met Myself

James L. Rubart is a professional marketer and speaker. He is the author of the best-selling novel Rooms as well as Book of DaysThe ChairSoul's GateMemory's Door, andSpirit Bridge. He lives with his wife and sons in the Pacific Northwest.

Connect with James: websiteTwitterFacebook

About the book: 
The Five Times I Met Myself
 (Thomas Nelson, November 2015)

What if you met your twenty-three-year-old self in a dream? What would you say?

Brock Matthews' once promising life is unraveling. His coffee company. His marriage.

So when he discovers his vivid dreams---where he encounters his younger self---might let him change his past mistakes, he jumps at the chance. The results are astonishing, but also disturbing.

Because getting what Brock wants most in the world will force him to give up the one thing he doesn't know how to let go . . . and his greatest fear is that it's already too late.

Purchase a copy:

My Thoughts:
I read a lot of books...well over 70 or so this year.  The Five Times I Met Myself is the most unique fiction title I think I have read maybe ever.  James Rubart is a new author to me and now one of my favorites.  I am anxious to check out his other works.
Rubart has written a book that exudes the idea of a "do-over".  The idea of lucid dreaming allows Brock to visit his younger self at different points to offer advice and a seemingly better direction for his life.  Brock's story goes much deeper than just desiring a little redirection.  Rubart writes a story about relationships in The Five Times I Met Myself... husband and wife, brothers, and father and son.  The depth of emotion I felt while reading the book was at times overwhelming.
Although Rubart goes back and forth in terms of time sequences, he does so with fluidity.  The story was so gripping for me that I started the book and was immediately invested in the plot and the characters.  Rubart keeps you guessing and more importantly hoping.  
"Do you think God speaks?  Talks to us?"
"Sometimes I think yes, sometimes I'm not so sure."
"Neither am I."  The doctor chuckled.  "But I'm starting to lose my balance on the fence and believe I'm falling."
"Which side are you coming down on?"
"That he does speak.  If we're willing to slow down enough to listen.  And if we're willing to act on what he says."
In the end, while questioning what was "real" and what wasn't, readers will walk away more importantly with the undeniable belief that God is a God of healing and restoration. The path to that understanding may look different for all of us, but it is available...if only "we're willing to slow down enough to listen."

*I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for giving my review.

You can visit HERE to see what others are saying about the book.

Happy Reading Ya'll,

Friday, November 20, 2015

An Endless Christmas and A GIVEAWAY!

About the author:
Drawing from 33 years of on-air radio ministry, Cynthia Ruchti tells stories of hope-that-glows-in-the-dark through her novels and novellas, nonfiction books and devotionals, and speaking for women's and writers' events. Her books have been recognized by Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Awards, Selah Awards, the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence, Christian Retailing's BEST Awards, and Carol Award nominations, among other honors, including a Family Fiction Readers' Choice Award. She and her plot-tweaking husband live in Pittsville, Wisconsin, not far from their three children and five grandchildren.

Connect with Cynthia: websiteTwitter,Facebook.
About the book: 
An Endless Christmas
 (Worthy Inspired, October 2015)

Too many people, too much snow, and too little room should be a recipe for disaster.

Christmas takes a very different turn when the guests of honor break up instead of announcing their engagement. Trapped with his family, they learn that love looks different than either imagined. Both in their eighties, Dodie and Wilson Binder celebrate every Christmas as if it were their last. This year, their grandson Micah is planning to ask his girlfriend, Katie, to marry him so they can celebrate with the whole family. But things go very wrong when she says, "no." Now they are stuck. Too many people, too much snow, and too little room should be a recipe for disaster. But sometimes too much is just enough. Especially when it's Christmas.

Purchase a copy:

To see what others are saying about the book, you can visit HERE.

My Thoughts:
If you have been reading my reviews for very long, you know that I'm a huge fan of Cynthia's writing.  An Endless Christmas, Cynthia's new Christmas novella, only had one was too short!  In typical Cynthia Ruchti fashion, she packed such a poignant message in these few pages.  
I immediately fell in love with the characters in An Endless Christmas.  And my favorites were Dodie and Wilson Binder.  What a lesson in "live like you are dying"! Cynthia used the Binder family and Katie to portray such beautiful pictures of family (who may not always be "blood" relatives), forgiveness, redemption and restoration. God's grace is woven so fluently throughout this story.  Emotionally gripping from the first page to the last, you will want An Endless Christmas to be part of your holiday experience this year!

*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for a review.  

Cynthia Ruchti Endless Christmas

Happy Reading Ya'll,

Monday, November 16, 2015

Secrets She Kept

Cathy Gohlke is the two-time Christy Award-winning author of the critically acclaimed novels Saving Amelie, Band of Sisters, Promise Me This, William Henry Is A Fine Name and I Have Seen him in the Watchfires.

Cathy has worked as a school librarian, drama director, and director of children's and education ministries.  When not traipsing the hills and dales of hisoric sites, she, her husband, and their dog, Reilly, make their home in northern Virginia and the Jersey Shore, enjoying time with their grown children and granddaughter.

You can connect with Cathy through her website found at

Secrets a mother could never share...consequences a daughter could not redeem.

All her life, Hannah Sterling yearned for a closer relationship with her estranged mother.  But when death closes that door, Hannah determines to unlock the secrets of Lieselotte's past and is shocked to discover she has a grandfather still living in Germany.

Thirty years earlier, as Hitler begins his march through Europe, Lieselotte's father ascends the Nazi ranks.  A proper marriage for his only daughter could advance his career, but Lieselotte is in love, and her beloved, who secretly works against the Reich, is far from an ideal match.  Yet Lieselotte never imagined how far her father would go to ensure her cooperation, or how their actions would echo through generations.

Both Hannah and Lieselotte's stories unfold as Hannah travels to Berlin to meet her grandfather, who is hiding wartime secrets of his own.  Longing for connection yet shaken by all she uncovers, Hannah must decide if she can atone for her family's tragic past...and how their legacy will shape her future.

My Thoughts:
Cathy has an exceptional gift of having the past and present collide in her novels.  Secrets She Kept is no exception.  Cathy's research of the Holocaust is exhaustive and her themes of forgiveness, redemption and hope shine brilliantly in Hannah's and Lieselotte's stories.  Even though the story switches back and forth between the past (Lieselotte) and the present (Hannah), Cathy's writing brings the two together with a smooth thread of history and application to bring about change.  I loved that Cathy included a cameo appearance by Corrie Ten Boom.
"In darkness God's truth shines most clear."  Corrie Ten Boom
This novel is emotionally gripping and one that has remained with me even though I read it months ago.  Cathy wastes no time providing the conflict and tension that is played out in Hannah's story. What Hannah learns is a lesson for us all.
"Writing Secrets She Kept challenged me to examine what it means to truly forgive.  I've learned that withholding forgiveness is tantamount to carrying a load of boulders on our back, or shackling our feet with balls and chains.  Every day is exhausting, every breath a chore.  Release - forgiving or being forgiven - can't be exacted or even bought.  It's divine.  That's what I learned from Corrie Ten Boom as she forgave the guard from Ravensbruck.  She didn't do it -couldn't do it -alone.  She surrendered her own sin and inabilities to Christ and asked that He do it through her."  Cathy Gohlke in her Facebook post from  September 29th
Secrets She Kept now has a prominent place on this reader's keeper shelf.  Any time invested in reading this offering by Cathy Gohlke will be time well spent and quite possibly a personally transforming experience.

*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the publisher for the purpose of giving my honest review.

Happy Reading Ya'll,

Saturday, November 14, 2015


Lisa Harris is a Christy Award winner and the winner of the Best Inspirational Suspense Novel for 2011 from Romantic Times.  The author of nearly thirty books, including Dangerous Passage, Fatal Exchange, and Hidden Agenda, Harris and her family have spent twelve years living as missionaries in southern Africa.  They currently live in Mozambique.

You can learn more about Lisa and connect with her through her website found at

No one needs to push Nikki Boyd to excel on the Tennessee Missing Persons Task Force.  The case of her own missing sister, still unsolved after ten years, is the driving force in her work.  When a Polaroid photo of a missing girl shows up at a crime scene, Nikki quickly recognizes similarities to the past.  The closer she gets to the abductor, the more she feels this case has become personal, and she is not the hunter...but the hunted.

With this explosive first book in The Nikki Boyd Files, award-winning author Lisa Harris takes you on a fast-paced pursuit of justice that will have you holding your breath until the heart-stopping finish.

My Thoughts:
I have a new best friend and her name is Nikki Boyd!  Harris has knocked it out of the ballpark with Vendetta, the first book in her new series, The Nikki Boyd Files.  Harris is a master suspense writer. She wastes no time engaging her readers with an action packed and suspenseful story that grabs you on the first page and does not let go until the very last page is turned.
I love that all the loose ends aren't tidied up at the end of Vendetta. Harris has set the tone for an exciting series with this first installment.  Just when I thought I had things figured out, Harris threw a curve ball.  You will walk away from this one with questions waiting to be answered.  Harris's books have a place on my keeper shelf.  They should be on yours as well!

*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Happy Reading Ya'll,

A Reason To Stay

Kellie Coates Gilbert is a former legal investigator and trial paralegal and the author of A Woman of Fortune and Where Rivers Part, the first two books in the Texas Gold series.  Kellie writes with a sympathetic, intimate knowledge of how people react under pressure and she tells emotionally poignant stories about messy lives and eternal hope.

You can connect with Kellie and join her Reader's Club through her website found at

Sometimes the thing that keeps us from making the wrong choice is the one thing we can't control...

As an investigative reporter and the host of her own TV talk show, Faith Martin works to expose the truth for her viewers.  But in her personal life, she's anchored her world with firm boundaries in order to hide a family history she'd like to forget. By contrast, her husband Geary's life is an open book.  An easygoing pro bass fisherman, Geary is the ultimate family man - and his overbearing relatives don't know the meaning of boundaries.

Faith and Geary haven't been married long when their differences start to derail their tender relationship.  Surely love shouldn't be this hard.  While Faith considers whether divorce is the only answer to their issues, tragedy strikes.  With her life in the balance, she finds that the one she has been shutting out may be the very one she cannot bear to lose.

Kellie Coates Gilbert takes you on an emotional roller coaster as she weaves together unexpected trial, self-discovery, and forgiveness in this profoundly honest portrait of the tensions that can break a marriage - and the ultimate healing power of love.

My Thoughts:
When I read Gilbert's Mother of Pearl a while back, I knew then that I would read everything she would write.  Gilbert has a special gift in her writing of conveying the tension and emotion that comes in life.  A Reason to Stay was a roller coaster ride!  I struggled with these characters.  I experienced anger, sadness, sympathy and laughed my head off; sometimes all in just a few paragraphs.  Gilbert's scenarios are believable and her characters are genuine.  Her stories read like situations ripped from the headlines of the evening news.  They are current and her characterization and plot development keeps you turning pages.  Gilbert expertly weaves a strand of hope throughout her stories.  She has done this so well in Faith and Geary's story.  By the end of the book, I was weeping from the sheer beauty of their journey.  Don't miss this book from Gilbert!

*I received a complimentary copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Happy Reading Ya'll,

Sunday, November 1, 2015

A Respectable Actress

About the author:
A native of west Tennessee, Dorothy Love makes her home in the Texas hill country with her husband and their golden retriever. An award-winning author of numerous young adult novels, Dorothy made her adult debut with the Hickory Ridge novels. When she isn't busy writing or researching her next book, Love enjoys hiking, traveling, and hanging out with her husband Ron and their rambunctious golden retriever. The Loves make their home in the Texas hill country.

Find Dorothy online: 

About the book: 

A Respectable Actress (Thomas Nelson, October 2015)

When India Hartley is accused of murder, she must uncover the deceptions of others to save herself.

India Hartley, a famous and beautiful actress, is now alone after her father's death and embarks upon a tour of theaters across the South. Her first stop is Savannah's Southern Palace. On the eve of the second night's performance, something goes horribly wrong. Her co-star, Arthur Sterling, is shot dead on stage in front of a packed house, and India is arrested and accused of the crime.

A benefactor hires Philip Sinclair, the best---and handsomest---lawyer in Savannah to defend India. A widower, Philip is struggling to reinvent his worn-out plantation on St. Simons Island. He needs to increase his income from his law practice in order to restore Indigo Point, and hardly anything will bring him more new clients than successfully defending a famous actress on a murder charge.

Because India can't go anywhere in town without being mobbed, Philip persuades the judge handling her case to let him take her to Indigo Point until her trial date. India is charmed by the beauty of the Georgia lowcountry and is increasingly drawn to Philip. But a locked room that appears to be a shrine to Philip's dead wife and the unsolved disappearance of a former slave girl raise troubling questions. Piecing together clues in an abandoned boat and a burned-out chapel, India discovers a trail of dark secrets that lead back to Philip, secrets that ultimately may hold the key to her freedom. If only he will believe her.

Purchase a copy:

My Thoughts:
Love's stories are a delight to read!  Her portrayal of the time period in A Respectable Actress is on point.  The characters, especially India and Philip, are complex and well-developed.  Love blends the perfect balance of suspense and historical romance.  Love kept my attention with a steady pace of twists and turns that kept me engaged with the story.  The description in A Respectable Actress is superb. Love uses her words wisely and conveys a lot into a few words.  I appreciated that Love highlighted the arts in this book and gave an excellent view of the theater in post-Civil War South.  If you like historical novels and mysteries, you will love this latest offering from Dorothy Love!

*I received a complimentary copy of the book for the purpose of review.

Happy Reading Ya'll,

Valley of Decision

Lynne Gentry has written for numerous publications. She is a professional acting coach, theater director, and playwright. Lynne is an inspirational speaker and dramatic performer who loves spending time with her family and medical therapy dog.

Find out more about Lynne at

Every choice has a consequence in the explosive conclusion to the Carthage Chronicles as Lisbeth returns to third-century Carthage for a thrilling final adventure.
Thirteen years ago, Lisbeth made an impossible decision—leave third-century Carthage and her husband Cyprian behind for good. She knew it was to protect her daughter Maggie, so Lisbeth gathered the strength to move on with her life.
All these years, Lisbeth has thrown herself into her work and raising her headstrong daughter, all to live up to the promise she made to Cyprian. But Maggie is sick of being protected. In an act of teenage rebellion Maggie decides to do what her mother can’t—secretly returning to the third century on a quest to bring her father back, leaving Lisbeth no choice but to follow.
With Maggie’s surprise arrival in Carthage, chaos ensues. She finds her grandmother on trial for murder and attempts to save her, but instead the diversion sparks a riot that nearly destroys the plagued city. Only one thing will appease the wrath of the new proconsul of Carthage: the death of the instigator.
Will Lisbeth arrive in time to save her daughter from the clutches of Rome? How can God possibly redeem such a slew of unwise decisions and deep regrets? Filled with heart-wrenching twists and riveting action, Valley of Decision brings the romantic adventure epic, The Carthage Chronicles, to an electrifying conclusion.

My Thoughts:
Romantic time travel?  Time travel novels have never been my favorite, but when I had the chance to review Gentry's second book in The Carthage Chronicles, Return to Exile, I took the leap.  I even ordered the first book in the series, Healer of Carthage, so that I could catch up before reading and reviewing Return to Exile.  I'm so glad I read "out of my comfort zone"!  
I'm really sad to see the series end with Valley of Decision.  Lisbeth's journey has been amazing to read.  Gentry writes with era description and dialogue that carries the reader away to another time and place.  Her impeccable research shines through and the action packed journey left me breathless and sitting on the edge of my seat.  As an avid reader, I like what I like.  Gentry made me fall in love with a subject matter I never cared for previous to this series.  Her books  have earned a place on my keeper shelf!

*I received a complimentary copy of the book for the purpose of review.

Happy Reading Ya'll,

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Message 100: The Story of God in Sequence

Eugene Peterson was born in E. Stanwood, Washington and grew up in Montana.  He is married to Janice Stubbs and they have three adult children.

Peterson studied at Johns Hopkins University and taught biblical languages and English Bible at the New York Theological Seminary.  Currently, Peterson is a full time writer, poet and professor Emeritus of spiritual theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Eugene began work on The Message New Testament with only the Greek text before him.  The fresh insight and authenticity in The Message comes only from Peterson's intimate knowledge of the Greek and Hebrew languages and his own pastoral sensitivity.

In addition to The Message, Peterson is the author of:

  • Christian Basic Bible Studies Series
  • Answering God
  • Reversed Thunder
  • Sayings of Jesus
  • Subversive Spirituality
  • Where Your Treasure Is

The Message 100:  The Story Of God In Sequence

From Bono's Foreword to The Message 100:
"When the good book connects with our good lives, when the word sings in our hearts, there is a holy spirit busy in the translating. The most luminous of all translations of the word was the one into a single unizue life, that of Jesus of Nazareth. The poetic heart of The Message is that there is no dogma apart from the flesh becoming word...Peterson too has the heart of a musician, his intellectual rigor and humility saving him from the vicissitudes that have the rest of us banging tambourines as he lays out a feast on the altar.  While a lot of the time we're all still babbling in Babel, in The Message Peterson is often speaking in tongues - a language that decodes and deciphers us, the reader; a language to approach the very subject of God."

From Peterson's Preface To The Reader:
"If there is anything distinctive about The Message, perhaps is is because the text is shaped by the hand of a working pastor.  For most of my adult life I have been given a primary responsibility for getting the message of the Bible into the lives of the men and women with whom I worked.  I did it from pulpit and lectern, in home Bible studies and at mountain retreats, through conversations in hospitals and nursing homes, over coffee in kitchens and while strolling on an ocean beach.  The Message grew from the soil of forty years of pastoral work."

The Message 100 is organized into 100 readings designed to draw readers into "the unfolding story of God revealing Himself to the people He dearly loves".  This offering from Tyndale is organized chronologically so as to give readers God's grand redemption story to be experienced like a novel and not a textbook.  Peterson encourages readers to "read in an attentive, immersive way"... "A way that will allow you to be moved by the things that move God."

Each reading begins with some brief comments by Peterson to orient the reader to what they are about to read.  The portions are numbered in a bold 3 digit style (001, 002, 003, etc.) making it easy to keep up with where you stop and start as you read.  The text is not broken up into chapter and verse but more in a "passage" style with chapter and verse references to the side.

I love the organization and feel of The Message 100.  God's story, His "love letter" if you will is given to us to draw us to Him and His ways.  Peterson and Tyndale have given us a valuable and easy way to read His story with the hopes and prayers that His story will become our story.

*I received a complimentary copy of this resource for the purpose of providing this review.


Monday, October 26, 2015


This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (October 1, 2015)
Diann Mills


DiAnn Mills is a bestselling author who believes her readers should expect an adventure. She combines unforgettable characters with unpredictable plots to create action-packed, suspense-filled novels. Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers’ Choice, and Carol award contests. Library Journal presented her with a Best Books 2014: Genre Fiction award in the Christian Fiction category for Firewall.

DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers; the 2015 president of the Romance Writers of America’s Faith, Hope, & Love chapter; a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association, and International Thriller Writers. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas. DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on any of the social media platforms listed at her website.


Two murders have rocked the city of Houston. Are they the work of a serial killer, or is a copycat trying to get away with murder? That is the question facing Special Agent Bethany Sanchez, who is eager for her new assignment in violent crimes but anxious about meeting her new partner. Special Agent Thatcher Graves once arrested her brother, and he has a reputation for being a maverick. Plus, their investigative styles couldn’t be more opposite: he operates on instinct, while she goes by the book. When hot leads soon fizzle out, their differences threaten to leave them deadlocked. But an attempt on their lives turns up the heat and brings them closer together, and a third victim might yield the clue that will help them zero in on a killer. This could be the case of their careers . . . if they can survive long enough to solve it.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Deadlock, go HERE. Watch the video:

I have enjoyed ALL of DiAnn's books, especially her FBI Houston series.  I think living just outside of Houston drew me to this series.  My family and I relocated to Houston a little over a year ago and strangely, I found DiAnn's FBI Houston series as somewhat of a "welcome committee"!  I hope to meet her in person sometime soon. You can read Deadlock as a stand-alone novel; however, I would strongly suggest reading the entire series.  DiAnn's characters are complex and reading the series as a whole will allow you the joy of seeing the characters' progression and transformation.  DiAnn writes stories with a perfect blend of romance, suspense and faith that isn't "preachy" but realistic and believable.  There is a genuineness to her characters and their stories that is particularly endearing.  Her books have a permanent place on my keeper shelf.  I hardly read fiction books twice...I know I will read DiAnn's again.

DiAnn was gracious in answering some questions for us.  Enjoy this interview with her:

1. How did you become interested in writing?         
I cant remember when I wasnt in fiction mode. Before I could hold a pencil, I created stories. After I could hold a pencil, I wrote stories. The power of the written word intrigued me then as nowthe sound of words, the look of them on the written page, the ways words are used to entertain, inspire, and encourage others.                                                                                                                                               
2. What can you tell us about the setting of this novel?
Deadlock, a romantic suspense, is set in Houston, Texas. My city. My home. Familiar landscapes add more authenticity.

3. Who are the main characters?
Special Agent Bethany Sanchez steps into the violent crime division of Houstons FBI. Shes a bit of a perfectionist, and her own worst critic. However, she has reservations about her new partner, the same man who put her brother in jail. To make matters worse, he has a reputation of getting the job done, no nonsense, and a womanizer. Are the rumors true?

4. Special Agent Thatcher Graves is ready to work with his new partner, but shes hard to get to know. Hes uncertain if he can trust her, and he has to know she has his back. Recently he made a decision to become a Christian, but his past party-image stops him from revealing the changes in his life.

5. Which of the characters surprised you the most in this story, and how so?
Bethany refused to give up on her relationship with her family, even though they chose her felon brother over her.

6. How did the writing of this story impact you as a person or as an author?
Definitely the family dynamics. We all have family members who dont share our beliefs or values. This deepened my awareness of unconditional love woven with obedience to Gods principles.

7. Why is this story important to you?
Three reasons:
1.      The complexities of dealing with a depraved mind.
2.      Showing the cultural differences between Bethany and Thatcher and their friendship resulting in love.
3.      Creating an action-packed story about Houstons FBI, their dedication and commitment to keeping people safe.

8. What would you like your readers to take away from this story?
Gods sovereignty in all situations of lifefamily, career, friendships, love, and obeying laws that correspond with Gods principles.
9. Are there some specific lessons you hope readers will learn and apply to their lives after reading your book?
God is bigger than our problems - whether that be career, spiritual, or personal. In Deadlock, not only did professional problems attack my hero and heroine, but family dynamics.
10.  When you are not writing, what do you like to do? Do you have any hobbies?
I enjoy reading, cooking, gardening, and grandkids! Im very much into good health and exercise to keep my body and mind in the best shape possible.                                                                                                                                                   
11. What can you tell us about Deadlock?

Two murders have rocked the city of Houston. Are they the work of a serial killer, or is a copycat trying to get away with murder?

That is the question facing Special Agent Bethany Sanchez, who is eager for her new assignment in violent crimes but anxious about meeting her new partner. Special Agent Thatcher Graves once arrested her brother, and he has a reputation for being a maverick. Plus, their investigative styles couldnt be more opposite: he operates on instinct, while she goes by the book.

When hot leads soon fizzle out, their differences threaten to leave them deadlocked. But an attempt on their lives turns up the heat and brings them closer together, and a third victim might yield the clue that will help them zero in on a killer. This could be the case of their careers . . . if they can survive long enough to solve it.

Where can readers find you on the Internet?

Sign up for my blog on my website! I love to hear from readers!
Go now and check out DiAnn's books on Amazon.  You can do that HERE!

Happy Reading Ya'll,