Monday, April 29, 2013

Stealing the Preacher by Karen Witemeyer

Stealing the Preacher


On his way to interview for a position at a church in the Piney Woods of Texas, Crockett Archer can scarcely believe it when he's forced off the train by a retired outlaw and presented to the man's daughter as the minister she requested for her birthday. Worried this unfortunate detour will ruin his chances of finally serving a congregation of his own, Crockett is determined to escape. But when he finally gets away, he's haunted by the memory of the young woman he left behind--a woman whose dreams now hinge on him
For months, Joanna Robbins prayed for a preacher. A man to breathe life back into the abandoned church at the heart of her community.  A man to assist her in fulfilling a promise to her dying mother.  A man to help her discover answers to the questions that have been on her heart for so long. But just when it seems God has answered her prayers, it turns out the person is there against his will and has dreams of his own calling him elsewhere. Is there any way she can convince Crockett to stay in her little backwoods community? And does the attraction between them have any chance of blossoming when Joanna's outlaw father is dead set against his daughter courting a preacher?

My Opinion:

Overall it was a fun/enjoyable read!
Their was one thing about Stealing the Preacher that I did not like. Which was how the kidnapping, "stealing," of Crockett took place. I feel like it was not thought out well and that it was not believable. Whose gonna steal a Preacher? Not to mention how he is kidnapped... That's for you to find out;) Other than that however the book was great!

In a Short-Straw Bride I thought Crockett was somewhat boring and was kinda just there. In this book though I learned that he is actually the light-hearted one, the one good at breaking tension and making someone smile. He was pretty funny and good with all ages. I liked how even though he may be attracted to women around him the most important thing to him was their spiritual relationship with God.

I like the romance in Karen's stories. They have enough to satisfy, but not to much to overwhelm. It's sweet and steamy but not lustful.

This was a good story about forgiveness and trusting in God to take care of us. This book used my favorite verse at one point: Isaiah 41:10. The verse is about trusting in God and not fearing the world, because God is in charge and if we believe in him he will ,"uphold us with his righteous right hand."

Like  I said, the plot in the beginning was not my favorite. However, the conflict at the end was really good. It all made sense and was well done. I can't say much about this without giving it away though;)

Rating: 4 Stars

Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Passion Denied by Julie Lessman

A Passion Denied (Daughters of Boston, #3)


Young Elizabeth O'Connor is the little sister John Brady always longed for. But she wants much more than that from her spiritual mentor. As she blossoms into a beautiful young woman intent on loving John, he must push back the very real attraction he feels for her. His past just won't let him go there. Unfortunately, Lizzie won't let him go anywhere else--until she discovers he is not all that he seems. Can true love survive such revelations?
Full of the romance and relationships Lessman readers have come to love, "A Passion Denied" is the final book in the popular Daughters of Boston series.

My Opinion:

Favorite of the series! I absolutely loved this book!

This one literally made me cry, I couldn't believe the heart break but also the restoration that took place. Normally in Julie’s books at least one of the main characters is lost and does not have a relationship with God. In this one both of them did, but one had a past that they thought was unforgivable.

Brady, bless his heart! His love for God is unmistakable and unbelievably remarkable. He is almost the perfect man, the only thing he had an issue with was forgiveness. How to give it occasionally and how to receive it. His character shows that even after someone receives God into their life that they will still have struggles and problems to overcome.

Some really good verses used in the story to help Brady get over his problems were:
Psalm 103:12
New International Version (NIV)
12 far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
1 John 1:9
New International Version (NIV)
9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
Micah 7:19
New International Version (NIV)
19 You will again have compassion on us;    you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.

The main part of this story is about Brady falling in love with Lizzie who is already in love with him, but not feeling worthy of anybody's love because of his sinful past.

Everybody makes mistakes and sins, and I've had a hard time with forgiving/receiving forgiveness, but after reading this my eyes have been opened to just how much God really loves me, and wants to forgive me.

Some verses of my own that I think go with this are:
Hebrews 8:12
New International Version (NIV)
12 For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.
Ephesians 4:32
New International Version (NIV)
32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

I can't think of anything else to add other than to say once again that I loved A Passion Denied.I hope you liked the review:)

Rating: 5 Stars

Friday, April 19, 2013

A Passion Redeemed by Julie Lessman

A Passion Redeemed (Daughters of Boston, #2)


Graced with physical beauty, though shallow of heart, Charity O'Connor is a woman who knows what she wants. She sets her sights on the cantankerous Mitch Dennehy, editor at the Irish Times, who has unwittingly stolen her heart. And although the sparks are there, Mitch refuses to fan the coals of a potential relationship with his ex-fiancee's sister. But Charity has a plan to turn up the heat and she always gets what she wants--one way or another. Is revenge so sweet after all? Or will Charity get burned?

Full of intense passion, betrayal, and forgiveness, "A Passion Redeemed" will delight Lessman's fans and draw new ones.


Well, let me tell you what happened to me Tueday. I was at school at the end of the day hanging out with some friends while waiting for the bus to come pick us up. I started sliding down a hallway that is sloped to say hi to some other friends that were still there. When I did that another one of my friends came up behind me and pushed me, but she was just playing around. Well, when she did that I tripped, lost my footing and rammed straight into the corner of a brick wall! I recieved a busted lip and chipped off half of one of my front teeth. My friend feels awful about it!:( It sucks, but I know she didn't mean to do it. The busted lip is doing a lot better, but I still have quite a bit of swelling inside my mouth. I am going to the dentist next thursday to see about getting a crown and braces put on. So, I have had a long week... I'm sorry it took me a little while to read A Passion Redeemed, I started out really fast. However, I have been doing a TON of homework because of state test coming up and on top of that I have had chores and then the tooth incident. Just thought I would share that with you guys. Now for the review...

My Opinion:

This second book in the Daughters of Boston series was not a disappointment! It was great! I really felt for the characters in this book.
Mitch. I am so proud of him! He really changed his life around for the better when he met Faith in A Passion Most Pure. I love how he wouldn't settle for anything less in a relationship than both him and his wife being followers of Christ. I felt so bad for him when I read this book.  Knowing he couldn't have his hearts desire because she did not have a relationship with God. It broke my heart! How much it devastated him mad me want to cry. 
Charity. She's starting to grow on me. Reading this book I got to see her point of view on things and see how she treated other people than her family. She really does have a kind heart even though her relationship with her family needed a lot of work. You get to see her kindness by the way she treats her friend Emma. I loved how the book dug down deep into Charity's personal issues, showing me why she was the way she was. Then to see her transformation was incredible, even though she still has a long way to go.
This book really showed me the devastation of heart break. It showed me not to settle for anything less than what I know God has planned for me. That if i'm patient and obedient he will reward me with the desire of my heart.
It also did a really good job at showing the consequences of a persons sins. The book used this verse a few times: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord- Romans 6:22-23. Charity did many things that were not honorable, and after she did them it would say she felt dead inside. I don't think the verse means litteral death, but that you will feel used, unholy, like nothings important anymore, like no one cares..etc. That's when we realize that not commiting sin will give us the knowledge of Gods love, the gift of eternal life, and our riches in heaven. What's better than that?
I hope this review helps you decide whether or not to read A Passion Redeemed.:) I pray that if you read it you will get what I got out of it or possibly even more!
Rating: 5 Stars

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

A Passion Most Pure by Julie Lessman

A Passion Most Pure (Daughters of Boston, #1)


She's found the love of her life.

Unfortunately, he loves her sister.

As World War I rages across the Atlantic in 1916, a smaller war is brewing in Boston. Faith O'Connor finds herself drawn to an Irish rogue who is anything but right for her. Collin McGuire is brash, cocky, and from the wrong side of the tracks, not to mention forbidden by her father. And then there's the small matter that he is secretly courting her younger sister. But when Collin's affections shift, it threatens to tear her proper Boston family apart.

Book 1 of the Daughters of Boston series, A Passion Most Pure will carry your heart from the sophisticated streets of Boston to the green hills of Ireland as men go off to war and women long for their return. Full of passion, romance, rivalry, and betrayal, it will captivate you from the first page.

My Opinion:


Okay, I love Julie Lessman! She is an amazing writter, by far one of my favorites even though I've only read two of her books!

I can see where some people might think these books, Daughters of Boston Series, might have too much romance. Sometimes I felt awkward as well. However, I do like how she did that! Her characters behavior/morals are not perfect at all which helps a lot for it to be more realistic. It also shows how someone who is on the wide path, not straight and narrow, can take take a complete U-Turn for the better and change their future.

Collin is her example in this book of that. He is completely living for himself and not willing to change that for anybody. When he starts to fall in love with Faith he stuggles with the fact he can never have her unless he accepts Jesus into his life. Through his love for Faith, his growing relationship with her family and friendship with a soldier buddy he comes to realize that he does want what they have, even though it takes him forever to figure it out. His transformation is probably one of my favorites that I have ever read, as well as one of the most emotional. I have a feeling it's not going to stop there either with the other books in the series I have to read.

Charity. Well, let's just say her and I are not on good terms right now.:0
She played a big roll in the story, and one I'm not fond of at this point. However, I do realize that she was definitely needed or this story would of never happened. I can't wait to read about her transformation to the straight and narrow in A Passion Redeemed.

Faith. Love her to death! She is such a strong believer although she struggled with her faith in God at points. I really liked that because it showed how even the strongest christians can fall away from God, but that they can persevere with the loved ones/fellow christians around them.

This book is really good at showing that even the most well respected people are not perfect and even the best/closest families still have their flaws. This made it very realistic for me. Nothing in this book was cookie cutter perfect. It was full of obstacles and trials for everyone to face and come out blessed with a true love for God.

I definitely plan on reading A Passion Redeemed and A Passion Denied! Can't wait!;)
I hope this helps you decide whether to read them or not also! Happy reading!

Rating: 5 stars

Saturday, April 6, 2013

A Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund

A Noble Groom


A New Historical Romance from Fan-Favorite Jody Hedlund

Recently widowed Annalisa Werner has the feeling her husband was murdered but can't prove it. Alone with her young daughter in 1881 Michigan, she has six months left to finish raising the money needed to pay back the land contract her husband purchased, and the land is difficult to toil by herself. She needs a husband. With unmarried men scarce, her father sends a letter to his brother in the Old Country, asking him to find Annalisa a groom.

For nobleman Carl von Reichert, the blade of the guillotine is his fate. He's been accused and convicted of a serious crime he didn't commit, and his only escape is to flee to a small German community in Michigan where he'll be safe. He secures a job on Annalisa's farm but stumbles through learning about farming and manual labor.

Annalisa senses that Carl is harboring a secret about his past, yet she finds herself drawn to him anyway. He's gentle, kind, and romantic--unlike any of the men she's ever known. He begins to restore her faith in the ability to love--but her true groom is still on his way. And time is running out on them all.

My Opinion:

First off, I love the cover! It is extremely close to how I actually pictured Carl in my head. Second, *Sigh*, Carl is so amazing! And third, this is probably my favorite book by Jody Hedlund so far!

All the characters played extremely well into the story, even the not so important ones. Jody wrote in such vivid detail that I did not have a hard time picturing anything. I felt like I was standing right next to Carl and Annalisa the whole time! Also when she was writing about Carl and Annalisa's emotions, she explained them so well that I felt like I was experiencing the emotions as well.

The romance in this story was so sweet! I really liked how Jody referred to a whole bunch of princess stories throughout the book. It really played to how Annalisa forgot how to love and stopped believing that true love even existed, then Carl sweeping in like her perfect/destined prince!

I also liked watching Carls transformation from a well-to-do spoiled nobleman to a hard-working loving man worthy of respect. I loved seeing how his thoughts and opinions changed the further you got into the story.

Another thing I liked was that I thought this book was unpredictable, I could almost never fully have a guess on what was going to happen or how something was going to take place. Which I liked a lot!

I'm gonna be honest, when I started this book I didn't think I was going to enjoy it. I was excited about reading it until after I got a couple chapters into it, then I got scared because I wasn't getting hooked. The last book I read by Jody Hedlund, The Doctor's Lady, I didn't enjoy as much as the others. However, I didn't give up on A Noble Groom and as I kept on reading I was rewarded with, in my opinion, her best one yet!!!

I hope this review helps you decide to read it or not, and I hope that if you decide to read it that you enjoy it as much as I did!

Rating- 5 Stars

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Expanding Horizons...: Are You Entertained?- Part 3

Check these three post out! They are very interesting! liked them so much I had to share!

Expanding Horizons...: Are You Entertained?- Part 3: So did a gladiator win the crowd? Regardless of how he felt about fighting for the pleasure of others, his life could depend on earning thei...

Expanding Horizons...: Are You Entertained?- Part 2

Expanding Horizons...: Are You Entertained?- Part 2: "Are you entertained?" is the line used by Maximus in Gladiator . He said it in order to mock the crowd and the emperor because he...

Expanding Horizons...: Are You Entertained?- Part 1

Expanding Horizons...: Are You Entertained?- Part 1: "Are You Entertained?" is the famous line spoken by Russel Crowe when he played Maximus in the Gladiator, the story of a general t...

Fools Rush In by Janice Thompson

Fools Rush In (Weddings by Bella, #1)


Bella Rossi may be nearing thirty, but her life is just starting to get interesting. When her Italian-turned-Texan parents hand over the family wedding planning business, Bella is determined not to let them down. She quickly books a "Boot Scoot'n" wedding that would make any Texan proud. There's only one catch - she's a country music numbskull because her family only listens to Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. Where will she find a DJ on such short notice who knows his Alan Jackson from his Keith Urban?

When a misunderstanding leads her to the DJ (and man) of her dreams, things start falling into place. But with a family like hers, nothing is guaranteed. Can the perfect Texan wedding survive a pizza-making uncle with mob ties, an aunt who is a lawsuit waiting to happen, and a massive delivery of 80 cowboy boots? And will Bella ever get to plan her own wedding?

My Opinion:

This was a very funny read! Tons of crazy things happened that had me laughing from the beginning. From Bella's crazy family to how D.J. deals with it all, their is not stop laughter and family bonding.
 I loved how in this book Bella's whole family loves eachother to death, not to mention D.J.'s family as well. I also like that even though you know everyone loves each other, it showed how a family can and will butt heads, but everything will be alright and back to normal in the end; That after a spat you don't run for the hills but you let it make you stronger in your relationship with others.
I thought the whole relationship between Bella and D.J. was cute! It was romantic but not serious all the time, I liked how they would joke around with eachother and just relax.
The things I didn't like...
Yes, I liked how this book was funny. However, I do like to have SOME serious moments. About every time the book started to have a serious moment, something funny/weird would happen to interupt it. It kinda frusterated me. Also, Bella's family was over emotional, expecially her Uncle Laz. He cryed at EVERYTHING, happy or sad. I don't know any Italian family's, but I'm pretty sure they don't cry at everything.
Then, their was the bird. I don't know what to think about that, it was just a little weird and not realistic.
I would recommend this book to people who like clean books and love to laugh. I hope this review helped you decide whether to read it or not!
Rating: 3 1/2 Stars (added a 1/2 star just because I liked D.J. so much:)