This was a pleasant surprise and as such, is easily recommended for all readers. The Christian Fiction elements are light with no preaching; the character makes mention of God’s plans or her writing being between her and God and says a few prayers. The romance elements are also light; no instant-love, fade-to-black, or heavy petting. I absolutely loved the mystery and historical fiction elements and feel this made the read unique and fresh. The characters all feel unique and well fleshed out, complete with their little flaws. It’s not easy to write a book in first person but Joanna did a fine job with this one. The reader sees and feels everything the character does through a well-crafted and presented story. I was drawn in from the first chapter, loved the little plot threads weaved throughout the story, and feel you will enjoy it as well. I received an ARC through Revell in exchange for an honest review. This in no way has influenced my opinion or recommendation.
This is a gentle slow moving story with an abundance of repeating retrospective thought. At times it was interesting while several times through the read I just wanted to skip several pages. This is an excellent choice for those looking for a calm summer read, keeping the blood pressure from spiking, while escaping from any sort of excitement. While the writing is excellent, the story and constant reminders of what the primary characters are thinking take away from the enjoyment. That’s not to say this is a terrible book. There are readers who can’t get enough of this type of read, and for them I highly recommend this book. I received an ARC through the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Locke has an excellent grasp of the English language and how to bring to life not just a scene, but an entire world with depth and layers. The writing is top-notch with nearly perfect pacing throughout the entire novel. The characters are so well fleshed out that they feel real. I’m a huge fantasy genre fan so I was excited to read the first book and thrilled to read the second. I admit I was a bit hesitant since the first book was so good, but Locke more than came through with this one. This is a real gem of a find. The plot is very well constructed and the fantasy elements are authentic to the genre. The read is smooth and open to a wide range of readers. This comes highly recommended from our household. I received an ARC through Revell Reads in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Review by Sarah: “I am a huge reader of Amish stories. One of my friends is Amish and we share a love of these types of stories. I loved reading Hannah’s Choice. The way Jan Drexler describes the land and scenery is so beautiful I can picture it in my mind. The title is perfect for the story inside. Hannah really has to struggle with her choice and I could feel the tugs in both directions. I like the historical parts as well, especially the different ways the slaves where viewed. Sometimes it felt like I was really there and seeing it all happen. I was able to read this book thanks to Revell Reads. My review is my own and is provided of my own free will.”
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Review by Sarah: “I absolutely adore stories that originate from the Bible, especially when they come through with such authenticity and emotion as this one does. Jill Eileen Smith is an expert in her chosen craft and more than capable of weaving a story about one of God’s chosen. Deborah comes across true and faithful with some important decisions along the way. I’ve read other books by the same author and loved them as well. There needs to be more books like this one available for Christian readers and the young impressionable minds coming into their own.” We received an ARC through Revell Reads in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced our opinion.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Review by Shawn: “I did not read the first book of the series. Even so, I was not lost when I read this one. I was able to get right into the book without feeling like I missed out on something important. I like that the book does not have filth and unnecessary descriptions. This is my first Christian formatted political thriller and I really liked it. There is no preaching or pushing of Godly values so it is a good read even for those who avoid that and just want a good clean and fun to read book. It seems that the group of writers came together in a great way in order to have this as the finished product. I plan to read the first book and the third book when it comes out this fall.” This book was received free of charge in exchange for an honest review without pressure for a positive review.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Review by Sarah: Amanda Cabot is able to write a smooth flowing romance with all the right elements and none of that unnecessary stuff that Christian Romance Readers prefer to avoid. I like my romances clean and straightforward although I did feel there was a little bit of a questioning in the way the main female acts towards the men she supposedly does not want to marry. All in all though, it was handled very nicely and appropriately. I like that there wasn’t anything to distract me from the story. We received an ARC through Revell Reads in exchange for an honest review.
I thoroughly enjoyed this read. Nappa definitely has a skill with words. From the first page I was intrigued and wanted to find out more. It was very difficult to put down from the start. While this is a Christian Fiction genre book it’s not the least bit preachy or heavy, which makes it enjoyable by a much broader range of readers. I was pleasantly surprised by just how well-written this book is. I love the characters and feel they are very well fleshed out with interesting quirks to boot. The plot is very well threaded through the book and one that is fresh, unique, and well-paced. Overall I feel this is an excellent book and one I can easily recommend. I received an ARC through the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.
Review by Sarah “I loved reading this sweet tear-jerking book. There were times I just wanted to reach into the story and give hugs. I laughed, I cried but mostly I smiled. I love books that do this to me! Sawyer knows how to weave a story as though it were true. I wanted to read the book non-stop, it was that good. I love how Sawyer wrapped everything up at the end.”
Sarah helps me read and review books from time to time. In this case she wouldn’t stop talking about it and swears it is worth more than just five stars. I plan to read it myself when I have the spare time since she convinced me it was one of her top reads. We received an ARC through the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced our opinion.
The overall theme of this book is a bit on the dark side of humanity but it is written well. I admit there were times I skimmed past the descriptive pages in order to continue with the story. I like that faith was involved in certain aspects of the characters. A few moments were more difficult to process than others as they touched home a bit too close for comfort due to recent events. The overall story is nicely presented although I feel there is room for improvement in the lengthy areas. This gives parts more of a told than shown feel but not enough to ruin the book. A few characters didn’t feel quite as fleshed out as the rest making it difficult to connect with them on any level. I don’t feel that the religious content is thick or overdone and shouldn’t be a put-off for those who are not religious. I received an ARC through Smith Publicity in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.
Frantz brings a wonderful blend of historical aspects with a twist of suspense and mystery all tied into a thread of romance. The writing is rather enjoyable and captivating with wonderfully fleshed out characters. It was easy to become attached to the characters and feeling empathy for everything they are going through. The read was quick but I think that was because I was trying to read quickly to find out what was going to become of these beloved characters. Everything about the book works together to make one of those novels you just can’t put down. Overall this is an entertaining and refreshing read well worth investing your time into. I received an ARC through Revell Publishing in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.
Somehow this particular book missed the mark for me. I wasn’t fond of the writing style from the beginning but gave it a fair chance anyway. I found it difficult to get into the story or connect with the characters, especially Eliza. The overall feel of the read was grey, almost depressing but not quite to the point of causing sadness. The flow was fine but it just felt flat. I struggled with picturing the landscapes and people as well. I feel there is a story here that could be brought to life, it just didn’t happen for me. It’s not that this is a terrible book, it’s just not going to work for everyone. I received an ARC through Revell Publishing in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion, which may or may not mirror your own, and that’s ok because we are all unique.
This is an excellent mild mystery set in the Amish world. I really liked how the plot flowed with slight changes at the right moments. The mystery is well conceived and executed making for a fun enjoyable read. Katrina feel so real my heart went out to her so many times during this read. Suzanne definitely knows how to write about the Amish with such wonderfully fleshed out characters and a story that reaches out to the reader. The overall feeling is that of a heartwarming tale with a lovely ending. I received an ARC through Revell Publishing in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.
This is a very well done mystery with a touch of humor at just the right moments. Gabhart does a wonderful job creating a whole cast of characters that feel like they are taken from that little town down the road. The plot flowed at a good pace with several threads well weaved to tell the story and reveal the murderer. The locations feel so real with how they are presented and described. I enjoyed this book in one sitting although it was a long sitting while I waited for my son to finish up at practice. He asked me what was making me smile. I replied that it was a very good book. He had this knowing smile and simply said ‘Oh’ as though it all made sense. I received and ARC through Revell Publishing in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.
This is the final book in the A Place to Call Home series. The romance aspect was very light. I like the small town feel; it feels accurate in that aspect. The writing is done well, as with Armstrong’s other books. The characters feel authentic and I like the interactions between them. That said, the plot feels a bit rushed while the pace feels a bit sluggish. I get the feeling that everything had to be wrapped up in a nice neat bow within a set number of pages and as a result the story suffered a bit. I don’t feel that all of the threads came through and were tied off, leaving a few things unresolved. This isn’t a bad thing in itself but they were noticeable to me. Overall this is an easy and entertaining read that fits well in its genre. I received an ARC through Revell Publishing in exchange for an honest review. This in no way influenced my opinion.