"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver." Proverbs 25:11

Friday, January 27, 2012


She wanted her husband to attend the town’s society-driven church. God answered her prayer in a radical way.

An emptiness dogs Mary Lynn Scoville. But it shouldn’t.
After all, she’s achieved what few believed possible. Born in the rural south, she has reached the pinnacle of worldly success in Charleston, South Carolina. Married to a handsome real estate developer and mother to three accomplished daughters, Mary Lynn is one Debutante Society invitation away from truly having it all.

And yet, it remains—an emptiness that no shopping trip, European vacation, or social calendar can fill.

When a surprise encounter leads her to newfound faith, Mary Lynn longs to share it with her husband. But Jackson wrote God off long ago.

Mary Lynn prays for him on Christmas Eve . . . and her husband undergoes a life-altering Damascus Road experience. As Jackson begins to take the implications of the Gospel literally, Mary Lynn feels increasingly isolated from her husband . . . and betrayed by God. She only wanted Jackson beside her at church on Sunday mornings, not some Jesus freak who evangelizes prostitutes and invites the homeless to tea.

While her husband commits social suicide and the life they worked so hard for crumbles around them, Mary Lynn wonders if their marriage can survive. Or if perhaps there really is a more abundant life that Jackson has discovered, richer than any she’s ever dreamed of.

Read an excerpt from the book here


Having grown up in a large family with no social standing other than my father was a blue collar worker, I could kind of understand why Lynn and her husband Jackson wanted the best for their children. I too wanted the best for my child. So I worked hard, taught her the value of the dollar, the difference between right and wrong, moral values... well you get the picture. 

Lynn and Jackson wanted the lives to their children to be more than better. They wanted them to have the best education, be musically talented, have the best social standing, shop in the best stores, whatever it would take to not just propel them into the uppercrust of Charleston, South Carolina, but become members of the elite.

Lynn remembered the heartache and heart break of not being accepted and Jackson never forgot how hard he had to work to obtain the current position he had in Charleston's society.

In Sunrise on the Battery, I found myself drawn to their oldest daughter, Catherine. The pressure to not just succeed but excel in everything was incredible. How her parents failed to notice there was something wrong with her was incredible sad. She almost..... oops.... I almost told you what happened!

When Lynn prayed for her husband to know Jesus.... she just didn't anticipate what would become of her life, the lives of her children or Jackson, himself.

I can see where the author, Beth Webb Hart, was influenced by David Platt's Radical

I did enjoy the book, though to me it seemed a little like a fairy tale in some places. (Maybe it's because I've never had the pleasure of hobnobbing with the uppercrust folk.) I found Beth Webb Hart's style of writing relaxing and warm. A bit like sipping a nice ice cold glass of sweet tea on a warm afternoon. (I have done that!)

So, if you are looking for a refreshing glass of ice tea.... I mean, a warm and lovely story about love, grace, compassion and life changes, then this is a great book for you.

Beth Webb Hart, a South Carolina native, holds a B.A. in English Literature from Hollins College and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Sarah Lawrence College. 

Her first novel, Grace at Low Tide, was one of three finalists for the 2006 Christy Awards in the general/contemporary/fiction category. Her second novel, Adelaide Piper, was selected for Books-a-Million's book club and for their national book of the month for December, 2006. Both titles were included in the "Top 10 Christian Novels of 2006" by Booklist, the American Library Association's review journal. Hart's third novel, The Wedding Machine, became an ECPA best-seller in July of 2008.

Beth Webb lectures on a variety of topics and has taught creative writing on the college and high school level where she received two national awards from Scholastic, Inc. She lives with her husband, composer Edward Hart, and their children in Charleston, South Carolina where she teaches English and Creative Writing at Ashley Hall.

This is her website: http://bethwebbhart.com/sunrise/

This book was provided by The B&B Media Group, Inc. for the sole purpose of reviewing. I am under no obligation to provide a positive review.

E-Book Recommendations!

Hi everyone!

I thought I would get your week-end started by recommending some e-books that I have recently read. I know that you will enjoy them as much as I have. 

I will give you a quick description of each e-book and where you can purchase them for your Kindle PC, Kindle or even your Kindle Android App. 

Okay then, without further ado....

 Thicker than Blood by C.J. Darlington. 

 C.J. Darlington is still one of my favorite authors and this book was first written by her when she was 15 years old. After much tweaking and polishing is was finally published after she was a finalist in the Operation First Novel contest, February 2009.

Thicker than Blood is a story about two young women, sisters, who went their separate ways after the death of their parents. The older sister, Christy, took the way of hard knocks and alcohol and her younger sister, May, became a partner in a cattle ranch. 

Now you have to read the story to find out just what is "Thicker than Blood." You won't be disappointed. C.J. Darlington is a wonderful writer and story teller.
Here is a link to read the first chapter: http://www.cjdarlington.com/excerpts/thicker-than-blood-excerpt.htm

Watch the trailer here: http://www.cjdarlington.com/books/thicker-than-blood/trailer.htm

A Vote of Confidence by Robin Lee Hatcher

Independent, single, and intelligent, Gwen Arlington decides to run for Mayor for Bethlehem Springs, Idaho in the year 1915. A time when women holding such an office is unheard of, and not encouraged. But the love she has for her community and its inhabitants prods her to make this ground-breaking decision. 

Well written and full of intrigue not to mention great historical research, Robin Lee Hatcher produces a book worth reading.

Hear is the link to watch the trailer for A Vote of Confidence

This is the link to Robin Lee Hatcher's website http://www.robinleehatcher.com/vote_of_confidence.html 

Another book by Robin Lee Hatcher

Legacy Lane is a warm, compelling story about a young woman, Angie Hunter, who returns home to help her mother, Francine Hunter. 

Angie quit her big city job at the paper after being passed for promotion and isn't sure what she's going to do. She agreed to return home, to Hart's Crossing, because her mother needed help after a surgery. But, she doesn't intend to stay.

What she learns about herself, her mother, and a caring community of people, will cause her to examine herself in a completely different way.

A wonderful story about love, grace and forgiveness, this is another winner by Robin Lee Hatcher.

Read an excerpt of the book here: http://www.robinleehatcher.com/legacy_lane.html#excerpt

 The Preacher's Bride by Jody Hedlund is a well written story about the life of John Bunyan's wife, Elizabeth. 

Here is a little about the book:

In 1650s England, a young Puritan maiden is on a mission to save the baby of her newly widowed preacher—whether her assistance is wanted or not.
Always ready to help those in need, Elizabeth ignores John’s protests of her aid. She’s even willing to risk her lone marriage prospect to help the little family.
Yet Elizabeth’s new role as housekeeper takes a dangerous turn when John’s boldness from the pulpit makes him a target of political and religious leaders. As the preacher’s enemies become desperate to silence him, they draw Elizabeth into a deadly web of deception. Finding herself in more danger than she ever bargained for, she’s more determined than ever to save the child—and man—she’s come to love.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I know you will too. Jody Hedlund is a wonderful writer with strong characters. 

Click here to read and excerpt: http://www.jodyhedlund.com/Adobe/ThePreachersBrideSC.pdf 

To see more about Jody Hedlund and The Preacher's Bride click here


Violet Dawn by Brandilyn Collins is absolutely riveting. Brandilyn Collins is the queen of suspense.

Paige Williams, a new comer to Kanner Lake, finds out trying to hide in a small town may not be the best decision.  

Here is a short description about the book:

First in the Kanner Lake Series 

Something sinuous brushed against Paige’s knee. She jerked her leg away. What was that?

She rose to a sitting position, groped around with her left hand. Fine wisps wound themselves around her fingers.


She yanked backward, but the tendrils clung. Something solid bumped her wrist. Paige gasped. With one frantic motion she shook her arm free, grabbed the side of the hot tub, and heaved herself out.
Paige Williams slips into her hot tub in the blackness of night—and finds herself face to face with death.

Alone, terrified, fleeing a dark past, Paige must make an unthinkable choice.

In Violet Dawn, hurtling events and richly drawn characters collide in a breathless story of murder, revenge and the need to belong. One woman’s secrets unleash an entire town’s pursuit, and the truth proves as elusive as the killer in their midst.

Here is where you can read an excerpt from the book: http://brandilyncollins.com/books/excerpts/vd-ex.html

Powerfully written, hanging on the edge of your seat suspenseful, Brandilyn Collins and her book Violet Dawn is a definite must read. Just don't read it in the dark! 

Any and all of these e-books can be purchased at Amazon.com
or directly from the author's site. You can also purchase them from most of your favorite on-line book stores. Don't forget to check your local library to see if they have Kindle e-books to borrow.

Have a great week-end and don't forget to download a book from your favorite author!

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Land of Darkness by C.S. Lakin

After waiting forever and believing this review copy had gotten lost in the mail it finally arrived. The packaging was a bit worse for the wear, but the book was in fine condition. I believe it traveled through its own land of darkness to get to me, but it made it.

I eagerly tore the package open and dove right into the book. Can I say it took me much less time to read it than it did waiting for it to arrive? 

C.S. Lakin has done it again. She has written another beautiful story full of allegory, strong characters and always pointing her characters and readers to the one King.

Jadiel, a twelve year old girl, is grieving for her dead mother and her father unwittingly marries a witch who has bewitched him and blinds him to his daughter's needs. The wicked step-mother and her two evil daughters make Jadiel's life more than difficult. (Sounds a little like another story but don't worry, this one is much better.) 

Callen is a young man who is a wood-carver for Jadiel's uncle. He happens upon a drawing of an ornate bridge that stirs his imagination and desire to see this bridge for himself. 

As Callen sets out to find this exquisite bridge made from wood, Jadiel finds herself sent on an adventure of her own. Her step-mother wants the leaves of a particular tree that promises eternal youth and beauty. Specifically the leaves of the Eternal tree. She has until the next full moon to find them and bring them back or her father will die.

Jadiel and Callen end up traveling together and find out that what they are searching for turns out to be something otherly different. 

I would say more... but I don't want to spoil the story. It is truly a wonderful tale. Rich characters, strong imagery, a masterfully written book. This is definitely a keeper. I look forward to reading it again and again.

C.S. Lakin is now my number one author for fantasy, next to C.S. Lewis, of course. Her Gates of Heaven series is worth reading, writing about, talking about and sharing with any one who enjoys a well written book.

C.S. Lakin lives in the otherworldly kingdom of California where she works professionally as a book copy editor and writing coach (when she isn't writing novels). She has two amazing daughters, a dedicated and encouraging husband, a demanding but loveable black lab puppy, and three persnickety but irresistible cats. Whenever possible, she disappears for days atop mountain peaks or explores the ocean sixty feet below the surface. The rest of her life is spent between sea and sky waiting for a city not made by human hands.


This book was provided graciously by C.S. Lakin and AMG Publishers/Living Ink Books for the sole purpose of reviewing. I am under no obligation to provide a positive review.

Reading Revelation by C. Marvin Pate

Reading Revelation: A Comparison of Four Interpretive Translations of the Apocalypse is a very interesting book. I have read a number of books on Revelation but this is the first one I have seen that takes four different viewpoints and puts them side by side.

I think this would be a great book to use for personal or group studies. Looking at it as a tool for a study group to use, I found it to be helpful in answering questions I had. It was interesting to see how the different "translations" corresponded with one another. 

As a topic question, I wanted to know how dramatic it would be if the second coming of Christ all ready happened at the fall of Jerusalem in A.D. 70. After reading this chapter in the four interpretive translations, I believe it would be very dramatic if the seconding coming of Christ has already happened. For one thing, the world has yet to experience the Great Tribulation. I think the second coming of Christ is something yet to be fulfilled. I also think the fall of Jerusalem was important because it caused the Jewish people who believed in Christ to scatter and share the gospel in all of the world. The second coming of Christ is an important event in the life of believing Jews and Christians alike. It is then all who have died for their faith will see the King of kings ride in triumph and finally destroy His enemies, including the beast and false prophet. 

Reading Revelation is a tool not to be used lightly, but one to help anyone studying Revelation get a better grasp and understanding of this very rich letter.

C. Marvin Pate is a professor of biblical studies at Ouachita Baptist University, Arkadelphia, Arkansas. He is the author and editor of numerous works related to eschatology and Revelation, including Four Views of Revelation, The Apoclaypse: A Historical Novel, Doomsday Delusions, and The End of the Age Has Come: The Theology of Paul. He is coeditor of the Dictionary of Biblical Prophecy.

Reading Revelation was provided by Kregel Publication for the purpose of review. I am under no obligation to give a positive review.