Monday, July 21, 2014

In Perfect Time


In Perfect Time
Sarah Sundin

Flight nurse Lt. Kay Jobson collects hearts wherever she flies, but C-47 pilot Lt. Roger Cooper is immune to her charms. Throughout Italy and southern France, as she evacuates the wounded and he delivers paratroopers and supplies, every beat of their hearts draws them where they don't want to go.

What I love about Sarah Sundin's books is that she really gets me emotionally invested in her characters; that doesn't normally happen for me in a lot of modern/Christian fiction, and so I always end up really surprised by how sucked into her books that I get! She always creates such unique, real characters that I feel like I really know.

I really enjoyed In Perfect Time. The characters were flawed, but so likable at the same time- I didn't think I was going to like the flirtatious Kay, but I was wrong. I grew to understand her and care about her and root for her, too. Of course, sometimes the characters made choices that drove me crazy, but everything always worked itself out. And the faith message was wonderful, too. I can't count the times it had me nodding my head in agreement.

I wouldn't recommend this book to younger readers, though. Both Kay and Roger have "pasts", and Kay, as aforementioned, is a flirt with a string of boyfriends (there's also a scene where a woman is nearly taken advantage of by a man). Still, though it does deal with some not-so-pretty stuff, there's more than enough hope and redemption to make up for it.

Rating: 9

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Sarah's Choice


Sarah's Choice
Rebecca St. James and Nancy Rue
Thomas Nelson

In Sarah Collins s mind, only one thing stands in the way of her success . . . an unborn baby.

Sarah is about to receive a promotion that will give her everything she s ever wanted: a huge pay increase, a new car, a fabulous apartment, and first-class travel.

But then she discovers she s pregnant. And while she "thinks "she loves her boyfriend, Matt, she isn t sure he s mature enough to be a responsible father. And the job she s pursuing is open only because the previous employee is out on maternity leave. Sarah would never be able to handle the travel as a single mom.

Torn between advice from her coworkers, the insistence of her mother and sister that she keep the baby, her insecurity about her relationship with Matt, and the void where her father should be, Sarah has no idea how to make this decision.

A Christmas card from a mysterious old woman is the catalyst for three visions of her future and just may be the miracle she needs. But can she trust the visions? Are they the yearnings of a conflicted heart? Or are they true visions from the God she thought had turned His back on her?

Though I never saw the movie version of this story, I had heard good things about it...and since books are really more my comfort zone anyway, I decided to give Sarah's Choice a go.

I really wanted to love this book, since I'm so supportive of the pro-life movement, but the writing style really threw me for a loop. I'm not sure what it was about it, but I found it really confusing. Also, since Sarah is not a Christian at the beginning of the book, she has made some very ungodly life choices (obviously) and though there was nothing explicit, there were some conversational things that made me a little uncomfortable.

However, as the book when on, I felt the writing became less confusing...I started getting pulled into the story...and I started to care about the characters. Sarah's Choice is not my favorite book by any means. And maybe that's partly because contemporary fiction that takes place in present day isn't really my thing. Sarah's Choice isn't a "for fun" book. It's very, very serious. And yet it has its moments of humor, many moments of God's hand working in the lives of His people, and a wonderful, thought-provoking message.

Rating: 7

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

The Revealing


The Revealing
Suzanne Woods Fisher

Naomi King, soft spoken, loyal, and easily overlooked, has a gift. She sees what others can't see. Intuition, she calls it. Others in Stoney Ridge don't know what to make of it and dismiss her hunches and inklings altogether.

When a young woman arrives at the Inn at Eagle Hill with a shocking secret about Tobe Schrock, Naomi fears the worst. She can't ignore the feeling that something sinister is at work-- something more than a threat to the tenuous love begun between her and Tobe.

As signs mount, they begin to point to Jake Hertzler, the elusive mastermind behind Schrock Investments' downfall. Soon, events spiral hopelessly out of control and Naomi must decide whether to listen to her head or her heart.

In this riveting conclusion to The Inn at Eagle Hill series, bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher pulls out all the stops with a fast-paced tale of deception, revelation, and just the right dose of romance.

It's been quite some time since I've tried reading an Amish fiction novel. The first Amish book I ever read was The Shunning  by Beverley Lewis years ago, and though I did enjoy that series somewhat, any other Amish books I've ever tried to read were just- how do I put this?- not my thing. There were one or two exceptions, but the fact remains that I just don't usually care for them. However, when I saw this book available for review, I decided to try it- after all, I haven't read a book of the genre for a really long time, and I hadn't yet any books by this author before, so I supposed that if I was lucky, I might find something I would enjoy.

Unfortunately, as I read, all the reasons I don't like Amish books reared their ugly heads and in many ways The Revealing was hard for me to get through. I know that a lot of Amish fiction writers have friends who are Amish, or relatives, or even grew up in a plain environment, so they probably know more about these people than I do. But I just cannot wrap my head around the fact that the Amish can be so strict in one area and then so lenient in another. I mean, it seems like these unmarried Amish couples are always out kissing behind barns or getting into "trouble" or whatnot. Sometimes, even though grace and forgiveness are emphasized, these family sagas seem an awful lot like soap operas.

The thing that probably saved this book for me was the character of Jesse, who was hilarious to the point that I would be willing to read a whole book about him. I also enjoyed the "Mrs. Miracle" bits. Still, these high points weren't really enough for the book to win me over.

This was sort of my last-ditch effort for the Amish fiction genre, and though this will probably be enjoyed by Amish fans, this was definitely not my thing. I think it's time to face that fact that Amish Fiction is just one genre I can't get myself to like.

Rating: 5

I recived this book for free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
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