Of Stillness and Storm by Michele Phoenix

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Of Stillness and Storm by Michéle Phoenix was a good book.  I did find that it was kind predictable in the sense that I have read enough books in this genre that I pretty much knew what was going to happen but even with that being so I still really enjoyed this book and the authors writing.  The more books I read, I am okay with being able to see what is going to happen if I get wrapped up in the characters and if I am able to look at them like they are real people.  I had no problem connecting with these characters and falling in love with the book.   I loved that this book takes place in a different country and involves characters that aren’t commonly used.  Even though this book does follow a set pattern because it has enough things that are different about it I am sure that is why I loved it so much.  If you love Christian fiction novels than I am sure you will enjoy this book as well.  If you have read it what did you think of it?

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About The Book

Of Stillness and Storm (Thomas Nelson, December 2016)

“I felt torn between two worlds. Each with its own mystery. One more captivating than the other, but the other more real and breathing.”

It took Lauren and her husband ten years to achieve their dream—reaching primitive tribes in remote regions of Nepal. But while Sam treks into the Himalayas for weeks at a time, finding passion and purpose in his work among the needy, Lauren and Ryan stay behind, their daily reality more taxing than inspiring. For them, what started as a calling begins to feel like the family’s undoing.

At the peak of her isolation and disillusion, a friend from Lauren’s past enters her life again. But as her communication with Aidan intensifies, so does the tension of coping with the present while reengaging with the past. It’s thirteen-year-old Ryan who most keenly bears the brunt of her distraction.

Intimate and bold, Of Stillness and Storm weaves profound dilemmas into a tale of troubled love and honorable intentions gone awry.

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About The Author

Born in France to a Canadian father and an American mother, Michèle Phoenix is a consultant, writer and speaker with a heart for Third Culture Kids. She taught for 20 years at Black Forest Academy (Germany) before launching her own advocacy venture under Global Outreach Mission. Michèle travels globally to consult and teach on topics related to this unique people group. She loves good conversations, mischievous students, Marvel movies and paths to healing.

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Fraying At The Edge by Cindy Woodsmall

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Fraying at the Edge by Cindy Woodsmall was such a fun twist to Amish fiction.  I have a huge fan of Amish fiction, and this book was such a fun twist on those types of books.  I loved that we got a look as to what it might be like if people were to switch places and live another person’s life.  This is the second book in the series, and I know that I am going to go back and read the first book because I have to find out what went on in that book.  From the first page right until the end of the book I didn’t want to put it down.  I loved everything about this story and the characters I literally can’t say anything bad about this author or this book.  If you love Amish fiction and are looking for a book that is a little bit different than the other books out there then I would tell you to pick this one up and check it out.

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About The Book

“Family, community, faith, and love. These “quilt blocks” sewn together made Ariana’s beautiful life. When they are pulled to pieces, will anything familiar remain? The Old Order Amish life Ariana Brenneman loved vanished virtually overnight with the discovery that she was switched at birth twenty years ago. Now she’s immersed in the Englischer world, getting to know her mother, and under the authority of her biological father, an atheist intellectual with resolute plans to expand Ariana’s worldview. Only Quill Schlabach, a childhood friend living Englisch, can help steady Ariana’s tilting ground between the two worlds, but can she trust him after so many betrayals? At the same time, Skylar Nash is forced to choose rehab or spend several months with her true relatives, the large Brenneman family and their seemingly backward life–no electricity, no technology, no fun. What the young woman can’t leave behind is her addiction to illegal prescription drugs and deep emptiness from the belief that she doesn’t belong in either family. New ties are binding Ariana and Skylar to the lives they were meant to have. Can they pray for the wisdom and strength they’ll need to follow God’s threads into unexpected futures? Fraying at the Edge is the second novel in The Amish of Summer Grove series”–

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About The Author

Cindy Woodsmall is a New York Times and CBA best-selling author who has written nineteen (and counting!) works of fiction and one of nonfiction. She and her dearest Old Order Amish friend, Miriam Flaud, coauthored the nonfiction, Plain Wisdom: An Invitation into an Amish Home and the Hearts of Two Women. Cindy’s been featured on ABC Nightline and the front page of the Wall Street Journal, and has worked with National Geographic on a documentary concerning Amish life. In June of 2013, the Wall Street Journal listed Cindy as one of the top three Amish fiction writers.

She is also a veteran homeschool mom who no longer holds that position. As her children progressed in age, her desire to write grew stronger. After working through reservations whether this desire was something she should pursue, she began her writing journey. Her husband was her staunchest supporter as she aimed for what seemed impossible.

She’s won Fiction Book of the Year, Reviewer’s Choice Awards, Inspirational Reader’s Choice Contest, as well as one of Crossings’ Best Books of the Year. She’s been a finalist for the prestigious Christy, Rita, and Carol Awards, Christian Book of the Year, and Christian Retailers Choice Awards.

Her real-life connections with Amish Mennonite and Old Order Amish families enrich her novels with authenticity. Though she didn’t realize it at the time, seeds were sown years ago that began preparing Cindy to write these books. At the age of ten, while living in the dairy country of Maryland, she became best friends with Luann, a Plain Mennonite girl. Luann, like all the females in her family, wore the prayer Kapp and cape dresses. Her parents didn’t allow television or radios, and many other modern conveniences were frowned upon. During the numerous times Luann came to Cindy’s house to spend the night, her rules came with her and the two were careful to obey them—afraid that if they didn’t, the adults would end their friendship. Although the rules were much easier to keep when they spent the night at Luann’s because her family didn’t own any of the forbidden items, both sets of parents were uncomfortable with the relationship and a small infraction of any kind would have been enough reason for the parents to end the relationship. While navigating around the adults’ disapproval and the obstacles in each other’s lifestyle, the two girls bonded in true friendship that lasted into their teen years, until Cindy’s family moved to another region of the US.

As an adult, Cindy became friends with a wonderful Old Order Amish family who opened their home to her. Although the two women, Miriam and Cindy, live seven hundred miles apart geographically, and a century apart by customs, when they come together they never lack for commonality, laughter, and dreams of what only God can accomplish through His children. Over the years Cindy has continued to make wonderful friendships with those inside the Amish and Mennonite communities—from the most conservative ones to the most liberal.

Cindy and her husband reside near the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains in their now empty nest.

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Pursuing Gold by Cynthia L. Simmons

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Pursuing Gold by Cynthia L. Simmons was a super interesting historical fiction book.  This book takes place during the civil war which has always been a time period that I have had a hard time getting into the stories but this book was different for me and I am not sure why that is.  I really enjoyed the characters in this book even though at times I would forget who was who so I would be super confused for a page or so and then I would remember who was who and it all made sense again.  There are a lot of characters which is why I kept getting confused I am sure but once I was into the book a good way I was able to keep them straight.  I really did enjoy this authors writing and I am going to add her to list of authors to read more books by them in the future.  If you love historical fiction books I would for sure recommend this book to you especially if you love civil war fiction.

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About The Book

With his father dead and his business partner incapacitated, Peter Chandler inherits the leadership of a bank in economic crisis.

>With only a newly-minted college degree and little experience, Peter joins his partner’s daughter, Mary Beth Roper, in a struggle to keep C&R Bank afloat while the Civil War rages around Chattanooga. Political pressure for unsecured loans of gold to the government stirs up trouble as tempers and prices rise. Their problems multiply when Mary Beth discovers counterfeit money with Peter’s forged signature. Can they find the forger before the bank fails? The two friends must pursue gold on behalf of their business, as they learn to pursue their heavenly Father to find hope and peace.

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About The Author

Cynthia L Simmons and her husband, Ray, have five children and reside in Atlanta. She has taught for over thirty years as a homeschool mother and Bible teacher. She’s a columnist for Leading Hearts Magazine and she directs Atlanta Christian Writing Conference. Cyndi has a heart for encouraging women in today’s crazy, upside-down world. She loves history and peppers her speaking and teaching with fascinating vignettes from the past. Her first book, Struggles and Triumphs, was nominated for 2008 Georgia Author of the Year. She co-founded Homeschool Answers and hosts Heart of the Matter Radio.

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Monthly Book Reviews – December 2016

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I am so glad that this year is almost over because it has been a wild year, to say the least. I am amazed how much things have changed for me in the past 12 months. I will have a post written about everything towards the end of this year or the start of next year. Let’s get onto the list of reviews that I have coming up in December.

December 2nd-Pursuing Gold by Cynthia L. Simmons

December 6th– Fraying At The Edge by Cindy Woodsmall

December 7th– A Wedding For Christmas by Lori Wilde

December 7th– Of Stillness and Storm by Michele Phoenix

December 13th– Disruption by Chuck Barrett

December 14th– No Good Deed Undone by Ginny Fite

December 20th– The Twilight Wife by A.J. Banner

December 21st– The Kill Sign by Nichole Christoff

December 26th– Relentless (Audiobook) by Nancy J Alexander

December 27th– The Good Daughter by Alexandra Burt

It is a slower month for me this time, and I am okay with that. I have had a hard time getting all the reviews typed and scheduled to post because my work life is insanely busy. I am going to leave this post as it is and I will see you back you here tomorrow.

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Love Connection by Camilla Isley

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Love Connection by Camilla Isley was a great book. I really enjoy this author’s style of writing. I am usually not a huge fan of romantic comedies but I do love the ones that this author writes. I find myself smiling throughout most of the book. I always read books like this one when I need to take a break from other books that are super intense because they are just an easy read and they always leave me with a smile on my face. I was a huge fan of Gemma through most of the book but I fell in love with Mark during the first chapter. It is funny how you can fall in love with a character right from the start of the book. I also loved that this books looks at both of the choices that she could have made. That made this book so different for me because I can’t remember another book like this one. If you love romantic comedies I know you will enjoy this book as much as I did.

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About The Book

Have you ever wondered what might have been?
Gemma Dawson is at the airport, staring at two plane tickets to two different cities. Two different weddings. Two possible futures. She’s at a crossroads.
Be maid of honor at her best friend’s wedding or crash her ex’s?
Gemma’s decision, unknown to her, hinges on a delayed flight and a chance meeting. Now her life is about to go down two parallel tracks—will Gemma fly toward a life with her first love or a future with a man she’s not even met yet?

Love Connection is a feel good Romantic Comedy about one woman, life’s infinite possibilities, and the destiny that lies beyond two different choices.

Camilla Isley

About The Author

Hi! I’m a writer of romantic comedy, cat’s lover, coffee addict, and shoes hoarder.
Besides writing, I love reading (surprise, surprise), cooking—and eating—especially pasta, going to the movies and obviously ordering a gigantic bowl of popcorn, and watching too much bad TV.
I understand that mosquitoes play a role in the ecosystem as a part of other animals’ diet, and I don’t want to starve all those frog princes out there, but I could really live without them.

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Killer In The Band by Lauren Carr

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book fromiRead Book Tours in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Killer in the Band by Lauren Carr was another great book by this author. I have read several other books by this author and this one didn’t let me down. I love that this author has created an entire world with her books. A lot of her books are intertwined even though they aren’t all in the same series of books. This is one author that I know I will be reading more books by her in the future because I love her style of writing and her characters. If you are looking for mystery books that don’t have super graphic scenes than these books are ones that I know you will enjoy as much as I have enjoyed them.

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About The Book

Summer of Love & Murder

Joshua’s eldest son, Joshua “J.J.” Thornton Jr., has graduated at the top of his class from law school and returns home to spend the summer studying for the bar exam. However, to Joshua’s and Cameron’s shock and dismay, J.J. moves into the main house at Russell Ridge Farm, the largest dairy farm in the Ohio Valley, to rekindle a romance with Suellen Russell, a onetime leader of a rock group who’s twice his age. Quickly, they learn that she has been keeping a deep dark secret.

The move brings long-buried tensions between the father and son to the surface. But when a brutal killer strikes, the Lovers in Crime must set all differences aside to solve the crime before J.J. ends up in the cross hairs of a murderer.

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About The Author

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday, Lovers in Crime, and Thorny Rose Mysteries—over twenty titles across three fast-paced mystery series filled with twists and turns!

Book reviewers and readers alike rave about how Lauren Carr’s seamlessly crosses genres to include mystery, suspense, romance, and humor.

Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. She lives with her husband, son, and four dogs (including the real Gnarly) on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with Lauren: Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook

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Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2016 Margaret Margaret

The Remnant by Monte Wolverton

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

The Remnant by Monte Wolverton was an okay book to read. I did have a hard time getting into this book because it is a dystopian book and those types of books are hard for me to get into. This book was really well written but I found myself comparing this book to the book “1984 by George Orwell”.   I read that book back in high school and I always find myself comparing any dystopian books to that one.   In the end I really did enjoy this book. It was written well and it is a book that anyone who loves dystopian novels. It may take you a few chapters to get into the book so I would recommend giving it a couple of chapters before you give up on it.

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About The Book

In the year 2069 the Apocalypse came and went, but Jesus didn’t show up, as some expected.

Instead, a cataclysmic war, natural disasters and pandemics eradicated 90 percent of earth’s population. Now, in 2131, a totalitarian government rules the world from the majestic, opulent capitol of Carthage, Tunisia. Blamed for igniting the war, religion and religious books are banned. Citizens who will not renounce their religion are sent to work camps.

Grant Cochrin, imprisoned in a bleak petroleum camp in what was once North Dakota, leads his family and friends to escape and embark on a long, dangerous quest for a Christian community. Their resource in this journey? A cherished page torn from the now banished Bible—a remnant of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount handed down from Grant’s grandparents.

What if there were an Apocalypse and Jesus didn’t return? What if the survivors found themselves living in a world ruled by a totalitarian government, where religion is forbidden and all religious texts have been destroyed?

In The Remnant, award-winning author Monte Wolverton tells the tale of a band of concentration camp escapees who trek through the lawless American wilderness on a quest for authentic Christianity, only to come face to face with an unthinkable dilemma. The Remnant is a fast-paced story punctuated with dry satire, memorable characters and hard questions about religious institutions.

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About The Author

Monte Wolverton is an award-winning author and syndicated editorial cartoonist. He is associate editor of CWR magazine. He is an ordained minister and holds a MA from Goddard College in Vermont. Along with his wife Kaye, he makes his home in southwest Washington State.

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Leah LaBelle – Quote Of The Week

Quote Of The Week

This week’s quote is by Leah LaBelle.

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What do you think about this week’s quote by Leah LaBelle?

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2016 Margaret Margaret

The Key To Cabo by Dave Harrold

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book from Pump Up Your Book in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

The Key to Cabo by Dave Harrold was a good book but not my favorite if I am honest. It reminded me of the Jack Reacher books which I love, but at times I get to the point where I have a hard time getting into the stories because I know that he would have died a million times if he was a real life person. I felt like I had a hard time connecting with the characters in this book as well and I am not sure why that is. I usually love all books in this genre, but for some reason, this book just didn’t work out for me. If you love mystery books than I would for sure, say check this one out and give it a shot especially if you love the Jack Reacher type of mystery/suspense books.

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About The Book

Danger is a way of life for Rock Pounder, so when the DEA asks him to recover $250 million in drug money hidden somewhere in Mexico, the 10% finder’s fee makes the risk worthwhile for Rock and his team. But when his beautiful publisher Penelope Dickens Frost finds herself in possession of a key that leads to the drug money, he finds trouble on more levels than he ever expected.

Penelope is one of the only women who hasn’t immediately fallen for Rock’s charms, but things heat up as the two of them race across the Mexican desert on Rock’s dirt bike, with drug lord El Raton in hot pursuit.

From Dallas to Cabo San Lucas and into mainland Mexico, Rock and Penelope follow the money trail, with Rock’s unique team aiding in the escapade. But someone on the inside is betraying them. And publisher Penelope Dickens Frost proves to be almost more than even Rock Pounder can handle in this high-octane thriller, the second book in the Rock Pounder series.

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About The Author

Dave Harrold is the author of “Motorcycle High: The Adventures of Rock Pounder” and “The Key to Cabo,” the second book in the Rock Pounder series. Dave is originally from Chatsworth, California, and he also lived in Huntington Beach, California before moving to Texas. He is a motorcycle adventure rider and has traveled all over the world on his Kawasaki KLR. His true-life adventures are woven into the fabric of his Rock Pounder tales. Dave lives in McKinney, TX with his wife Judy, where he is working on his third Rock Pounder adventure, set in Burma, Shanghai, and Las Vegas.

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Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2016 Margaret Margaret

Attracted To Fire by DiAnn Mills

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FTC: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.

Attracted to Fire by DiAnn Mills reminded me of a series of books that I read years ago. I enjoyed that series so in turn I did enjoy this book. I have always been a fan of books that involve cops or detectives in them and I thought this one was fitting right now because it has to deal with the secret service agents. This is the first book I have read by this author, and I have added her to my list of authors to check out in the future because I know I would enjoy the other books that she has written. If you don’t like super intense mystery books than I am sure you will like this book because it never gets super intense but still has a bit of suspense. I did enjoy this book, and I know that if you love mystery books or Christian fiction than I am sure that you will like this book like I did.

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About The Book

Special Agent Meghan Connors’ dream of one day protecting the president of the United States is about to come true. Only one assignment stands in her way. After the vice president’s rebellious daughter is threatened, Meghan is assigned to her protective detail on a secluded ranch in West Texas. Unfortunately, working with Special Agent in Charge Ash Zinders may be as tough as controlling her charge. Ash has a reputation for being critical and exacting, and he’s also after the same promotion as Meghan. But when the threats escalate and security on the ranch is breached, it becomes clear this isn’t the work of a single suspect–it’s part of a sophisticated plan that reaches deeper and higher than anyone imagined. And only Ash and Meghan can put the pieces together before it’s too late.

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About The Author

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; a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association; International Thriller Writers, and the Faith, Hope, and Love chapter of Romance Writers of America. She is co-director of The Author Roadmap with social media specialist Edie Melson where she continues her passion of helping other writers be successful. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country.

DiAnn has been termed a coffee snob and roasts her own coffee beans. She’s an avid reader, loves to cook, and believes her grandchildren are the smartest kids in the universe. 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 www.diannmills.com.

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