Sunday, February 16, 2014

A Match Made in Texas

By: Karen Witemeyer, Mary Connealy, Regina Jennings & Carol Cox

“A Match Made in Texas” is comprised of four romantic novellas.  The stories take place in 1893 in Texas.  Each story is unique in that the characters are facing their own set of challenges.  While dealing with their challenges, the characters also find themselves being given an opportunity to find love (or maybe love finds them).   I really enjoyed this book and I felt that the first two stories were well developed (given the length of each story).  I also enjoyed many of the characters, especially Clayton and Grace. 

The first story centers around the lives of Neill Archer and Clara Danvers while the second story focuses on Clayton Weber and Grace O’Malley.  Clayton and Grace’s story was definitely my favorite of all of the stories in the book.  The third story tells about the lives of Andrew Simms, Lucy Benson and Andrew’s Aunt Martha.  I loved Aunt Martha as she was a stubborn older woman who had a lot of life in her.  She definitely made me laugh.  This story also contained an element of mystery.  I liked the story but found the romance part to be a little too rushed.  The last story finds the “mystery matchmaker” now being the focus of everyone’s attention.  This story is about the lives of Hannah Taylor and Marcus Whitfield.  I felt this should have been the strongest of all four stories as this is the one that ties all of them together.  However, I found the story line to be rushed and not very well developed.  I liked it but it was my least favorite of the other stories.  Overall, I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to others.  I look forward to reading some of the other works from these authors.

*Thank you to Bethany House for providing me this book in exchange for my honest review.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Confident Faith: Building a Firm Foundation for Your Beliefs

By: Mark Mittelberg

Mark Mittelberg has penned an interesting book about building a strong foundation for your faith.  The book is broken into the following three sections: Six Faith Paths, Twenty Arrows of Truth and Ten Barriers to Belief.  The first section explains what faith is and provides a questionnaire which will help in determining which of the six Faith Paths people use to base their beliefs.  The Faith Paths are as follows: Relativistic, Traditional, Authoritarian, Intuitive, Mystical and Evidential.  A chapter is dedicated to each Faith Path to provide better insight as to why people may believe the way that they do and the pros and cons to each belief system. 
The second section of the book focuses on the “Twenty Arrows of Truth.”  In this section the author primarily focuses on the Evidential Faith Path to explain how science and logic strongly support Christianity.  The third and final section of this book focuses on what the author calls “Ten Barriers to Belief.”  Some of these barriers include: Lack of Information, Personal Hurts, Control Issues and Fear. 
I thought this was a thought-provoking book.  I really enjoyed reading it and would recommend it to my family and friends.   
 *I received a complimentary copy of the book for review purposes from Tyndale House.          

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Smitten Book Club

By: Colleen Coble, Kristin Billerback, Diann Hunt & Denise Hunter

This book was penned by four friends and their unique writing styles blend together seamlessly as they write about the lives of Heather, Abby, Lia and Molly.  The four novellas go into detail about the love lives of each of these individuals who are friends and part of the same book club.  The story begins with Heather picking up a book written by a Smitten native, Pearl Chambers.  The book is titled “The Gentlewoman’s Guide to Love and Courtship” and ends up being shared among the main characters.  The wisdom that Ms. Chambers provides in her book proves useful to the characters in regards to their prospective love lives.  Ms. Chambers also provides hints regarding a hidden treasure that has yet to be found.  This treasure, if found, could be life-saving for Molly as she is about to lose everything.  Molly’s friends come together to help her search for this hidden treasure that would truly change her life.  I invite you to journey along with these four friends to get a glimpse into the lives of four women who are all struggling to find love and a hidden treasure. 

I enjoyed reading the third book in this series and look forward to reading more from these authors.  I found these stories to be quick reads as each one is a little over eighty pages with the exception of the last story which is over one-hundred pages.  Although characters from the previous two books make appearances, this book can be read independently.  I would recommend this book if you are looking for a light read with a touch of romance and mystery.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.