Friday, July 7, 2017

True to You by Becky Wade {Book Review}

~ Description 

After a devastating heartbreak three years ago, genealogist and historical village owner Nora Bradford has decided that burying her nose in her work and her books is far safer than romance in the here and now.

Unlike Nora, former Navy SEAL and Medal of Honor recipient John Lawson is a modern-day man, usually 100 percent focused on the present. But when he's diagnosed with an inherited condition, he's forced to dig into the secrets of his past and his adoption as an infant, enlisting Nora to help him uncover the identity of his birth mother. 

The more time they spend together, the more this pair of opposites suspects they just might be a perfect match. However, John's already dating someone and Nora's not sure she's ready to trade her crushes on fictional heroes for the risks of a real relationship. Finding the answers they're seeking will test the limits of their identity, their faith, and their devotion to one another. 

~ My Rating 
4 stars 

~ My Review 

True to You was a delightful and fun contemporary. I've always enjoyed the 'person-searching-for-their-biological-mother/father/parents' storyline, and this one certainly did not disappoint. 

After reading the prequel novella to the Bradford Sisters Romance series (Then Came You), I knew I would want to read the rest of the series. So when True to You came available through Bethany House, I grabbed it. I didn't get to read it right away, but when I did, I was immediately pulled into the story. 

Nora and John were both unique characters. It wasn't like "oh, they're like so-and-so from that other book". They were their own people. 
Nora is a genealogist and historical village owner (how cool is that, y'all?) who spends her free time watching her favorite British TV series, reading books, and consuming cartons of ice cream. She 'dresses like a librarian', steers clear of her ex-fiancĂ©, and tells herself she's content with her life as it is... But she's not. 
John is a retired Navy SEAL, who now owns his own business. He's serious and focused, knowing exactly how his life will play out. Until...he gets a startling diagnosis that rocks his world. Now on the search for his biological mother, he enlists the help of one Ms. Nora Bradford...and things pick up speed from there. 

So, yup. *nods* This book was amazing. Aside from the main characters, I LOVED the relationships between Nora and her sisters, and John and his adoptive parents. Also the her mink coat. She was hilarious. ;) 

There was a few things in the book that I didn't care for, resulting in the dropping of one star. *minor spoilers throughout* 
First, all the kissing. mean, they kissed...multiple times...on their first date? Really?! Yeah, I didn't really care for that. Not okay. 
Also, the character of Nora's employee Nikki. She flirted shamelessly with any man she happened to meet...which really annoyed me. I think her character could have still had the same effect, even if that had been toned down a bit. I didn't particularly appreciate some of her remarks. 
Another thing. I wouldn't knock off a star for this, but it did make me go "whaaaa?" When their baking...and he smears sugar on her face...and then kisses it off. Am I the only one who was slightly grossed out by that? XD
*end of spoilers* 

All the way around, I super enjoyed this story. Can't wait to read more in the series! :D *is legit dying for Britt's story* 

**I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.** 

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Independence Day {2017}

Happy Independence Day, friends!! 

I wanted to post something good for the today. Something inspiring and patriotic, like a short-story or at least a poem. But unfortunately, I have had no inspiration to write much of anything for the last few weeks. :P 

So...y'all are getting some of my favorite patriotic songs and Bible verses. Enjoy... :) 

“For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another.”
~ Galatians 5:13 KJV

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance." 
~ Psalms 33:12 KJV 

“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place.”
~ 2 Chronicles 7:14-15 KJV

God bless America! <3 

To anyone who was wondering, yes, I survived the trip. A post about will be up sometime soon. ;) 

Saturday, June 17, 2017

A Place Called Lonesome by Jesseca Wheaton {Book Review}

** This post has been scheduled ahead of time. I'm leaving today for a trip, and I'll be back next week. :D ** 

~ Description 

All seems lost for a wounded soldier left behind on Utah beach after the Normandy invasion. As he gives up all hope for a rescue and resigns himself to never making it off the sand, a touch on his shoulder startles him.
Is it possible that help can come from a man who is his enemy? And just where are the hardest battles of the war fought?

A short story, about 3,000 words.

~ My Rating 
5 stars 

~ My Review 

Ahh, what a beautiful short story! <3 A Place Called Lonesome is a tale of a man who's been left behind. The one you would be least likely to expect comes to his aid and shows him mercy. It's sweet and sad, heartbreaking and beautiful. 

The ending was probably my favorite, coming in close behind the chat between the guys. How good can shine through the darkness, and broken hearts be mended... *hugs the story and all the charries* 

Amazing! <3 Definitely recommended! 

Favorite quotes... 

"We're not all heartless animals, you know. Some of us do have a soul...and a conscience." 

A promise that even when all seems to be lost, God steps in, and makes a mess into His beautiful masterpiece. 

**I received an ARC from the author in exchange for my honest review.** 

Friday, June 16, 2017

The Ebb Tide by Beverly Lewis {Book Review}

~ Description 

When a well-to-do family asks Sallie Riehl to be their daughter's nanny for the summer at their Cape May, New Jersey, vacation home, she jumps at the chance to broaden her horizons beyond the Lancaster County Amish community where she grew up. Sallie has long dreamed of seeing more of the world, but her parents are reluctant for her to put off baptism yet another summer, and the timing is unfortunate for Perry Zook, who has renewed interest in courting her. 

Though she loves nannying, Sallie has free time on the weekends to enjoy the shore. It is there that she meets Kevin Kreider, a marine biology student who talks freely about all he's learning and asks about her interests, unlike most of the guys she grew up with. Time with Kevin is invigorating, and Sallie realizes she's never felt quite this alive around Perry. Then again, Kevin is Mennonite, not Amish. 

Sallie tries to brush aside her growing feelings for Kevin, but she fears what her parents would think about her new friendship. Just as concerning, however, is Sallie's realization that her time in Cape May is increasing her desire to see the world, challenging her plans for the future. Has she been too hasty with her promises, or will Sallie only find what her heart is longing for back home in Paradise Township? 

~ My Rating 
5 stars 

~ My Review 

This book was utterly delightful. Uplifting and beautiful and soul-touching. I don't even know where to begin this review. 

How about we start with what you see first? The cover. The beachy, summery, oceany, amazing cover. (And no, I did not just make half of those words up.) It is sooo beautiful!! If you know me, you know that I have a love of book covers. But this one is exceptionally lovely. 

The plot was quite wonderful, not the typical Amish story, and I really liked it. I wasn't sure that I was going to like it that much at first, but I ended up adoring the Autumn and all of the Logan family. 

The characters were sooo great, realistic, and well-rounded. Sallie was sweet and charming. ('Cute' too, as Kevin so dearly pointed out. <3) Autumn was spunky and lovable. Kevin was just...a wonderful guy and I liked him (and *cough* totally didn't ship them *cough*) from the start. And Sallie's dad! Aww, he was just a dear! I totally soaked up his and Sallie's heart-to-hearts. <3 

Autumn and Sallie had me chuckling several times, and then smiling over their sweet chats about life and mostly baby Connor. I really enjoyed reading about their relationship. :D 

Before reading this book, I'd never really considered that I may enjoy marine biology and oceanography. But learning about different fish and ocean life through Sallie and Kevin's talks and explorations was quite fun! 

The theme of waiting on God really struck home with me. I nearly cried reading about Sallie's journey. It definitely touched my heart and gave me encouragement in areas where I needed it. The way our God can use fictional stories to touch hearts is absolutely incredible. <3 

All the way around, this was a beautiful, lovely story. Definitely a favorite of mine, and one I would recommend. 5 stars, all the way!! :) 

**I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.**