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

Friday, August 31, 2012



We each came to a moment of brokenness; what we found there was God. And he was enough.
It was the subject of headlines around the world: Three Mexican fishermen in a small open boat without any supplies, drifting for more than nine months and 5500 miles across the Pacific Ocean. Through blistering sun and threatening storms, they battle starvation, dehydration, hopelessness, and death. Their lifelines? An unwavering faith and a tattered Bible.

Thousands of miles away, Joe Kissack, a successful Hollywood executive, personified the American dream. He enjoyed the trappings of the good life: a mini mansion, sports cars, and more. He had it made. Yet the intense pressure of his driven and high-powered career sends him into a downward spiral, driving him deep into suicidal depression, insidious addictions, and alienation from his family. His lifelines? A friend and a Bible on the table between them.

Thoughtfully told with candor and humor, Kissack weaves together the incredible true voyage of fishermen adrift in the sea and his own life’s journey as a man lost in the world. It is a story that will buoy your spirit and renew your hope and faith.


Joe Kissack is a speaker, author, screenwriter, film and television executive, publisher, and entrepreneur. His job descriptions cover a wide spectrum, from working on a farm and cleaning out refrigerated beef trucks to serving as a senior executive for Sony Pictures. His speaking engagements also vary, as he provides inspiration for charities, churches, and business conferences. Joe lives in Atlanta with Carmen, his wife of twenty-six years, and their two daughters.

JOE KISSACK'S WEBSITE: http://www.thefourthfisherman.com/

WATCH JOE'S VIDEO: http://www.thefourthfisherman.com/the-fourth-fisherman/video.html?view=featured

Here are a couple of websites about the fishermen: 



I read The Fourth Fisherman a couple of times. Not because I had a hard time with the book, but because there was so much truth in it, that I didn't want to miss a single point.

This is an extremely well-written, honest story about Joe, how he was lost on the inside; and three fishermen who were lost on the outside. How does that make sense? The three fishermen had faith in God though they were lost at sea and Joe had a life most people would have been envious and he was lost without any faith.

I found the intertwining of what could have been two separate stories to be on spot. He is very open about his various addictions before he submitted his life to Jesus. He bares his life and heart to everyone and then shows them how he was changed by faith in Jesus. Throughout this revealing story about a successful man falling, he tells the story of the three Mexican fishermen who were lost and how they survived all those months at sea.

There is so much more I want to say about this book. However, I believe it would be best for you to read it for yourself. You won't be disappointed and you may find yourself reading it a time or two more.

It is an emotionally packed, true story about real people and real events.

This review was made possible through Blogging for Books and abovethetreeline.com by freely providing me with a review e-book. I am under no obligation to write a positive review.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

MOTHER OF PEARL: Luminous Lessons and Iridescent Faith Compiled by Margaret McSweeney


Like oysters, women often encounter unexpected grit during their everyday lives. In response, God’s love and grace covers this grit and transforms the pain into a precious pearl that leaves a layered, luminous lining within a shell: Mother of Pearl. This brilliant luster is strong, lasting, and purposeful—just like the love, lessons, and legacies left by the special women in our lives.

Mother of Pearl celebrates the collective iridescence of motherhood. Margaret McSweeney presents a collection of heartfelt vignettes from authors who communicate the importance of the unique relationships between mothers and their children, between granddaughters and grandmothers and between children and the mother-figures in their lives.

These stories tell of the power of faith, prayer, and values, exploring coming of age, the joy of becoming a mother, the importance of motherhood, the ways to heal from a bad relationship with a mother and weathering the death of a special loved one. Poignant and thought-provoking, the stories serve to inspire, encourage, instill hope, and strengthen faith.

The proceeds from the sale of Mother of Pearl will be donated to organizations helping struggling women and children. The charities include Wings (Women in Need Growing Stronger) to help fund the Safe House in the Chicago suburbs and to Hands of Hope to help build wells for schoolchildren in Zambia.

LINK TO BY THE BOOK http://ow.ly/cTZAg


Margaret McSweeney is a well-published author often writing online articles for Make It Better (the former North Shore Magazine) and freelance articles for the Daily Herald, the largest suburban Chicago newspaper. In addition, she has authored and compiled several books including A Mother’s Heart Knows; Go Back and Be Happy; Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit, Experiencing Grace, Mother of Pearl and Aftermath.

With a master’s degree from the University of South Carolina in international business, Margaret became a vice-president in the corporate finance division of a New York City bank and worked there 1986–93.

As founder of Pearl Girls, Margaret collaborates with other writers on projects to help fund a safe house for WINGS, an organization that helps women and their children who are victims of domestic violence, and to build wells for schoolchildren in Uganda through Hands of Hope. For the past 10 years she has served on the board of directors and leadership advisory board for WINGS. Margaret lives with her husband and 2 daughters in the Chicago suburbs. www.pearlgirls.info

READ MORE REVIEWS http://litfusegroup.com/blogtours/13531423/motherofpearl


I am always happy to read something Margaret has written or compiled. She has a wonderful, God-given talent to point, direct and lead her readers to the Author and Finisher of our faith, Christ Jesus.

Can I say I loved this book? Is that over the top? Okay, maybe a little over the top. But I really do like this book a lot. There is a story in here for every woman to connect with, whether she is a mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, or just herself.

If I counted right, there are 57 (that's fifty-seven) wonderful short stories from 57 different women of God who come from all walks of life. Singers, authors, speakers, well, you get the idea. They all share a vignette... 

(ok, I had to look up this word and here is the definition:[ vignette is a short impressionistic scene that focuses on one moment or gives a trenchant impression about a character, an idea, or a setting and sometimes an object.] many times I have to thank the Free Dictionary online)... 

that comes from their hearts and life impressions regarding relationships between mothers and daughters and grandmothers and mother-figures and all the precious things that make those relationships special.

I especially liked the grandmother stories, being a grandmother, myself. Oh how I remember the first time I held my first grandchild.... 

Anyway, this is a great book to buy for yourself or the mother/daughter/grandmother in your life. It could be a "just because" you were thinking about them gift and you wanted to bring some of the sweet love of God in their life through these marvelous stories. And you would also be helping other women and children because the proceeds will help fund some great charities.

Buy this book today and bless someone tomorrow.

This review was made possible through Litfuse Publicity Group by providing me with a free review copy.


Saturday, August 18, 2012

AFTERMATH: Growing in Grace Through Grief By Margaret McSweeney


Loss is a four-letter word that grips our hearts and gridlocks our lives. Grief can hold us captive until we surrender it to God. How do we find the necessary grace to journey through the mourning process?

Juxtaposed to the outpouring of her mother’s words about grief, the author shares her parallel journey from the emotional abyss of grief after becoming an adult orphan. With candor, the author shares her own emotions experienced along the spectrum of loss after her parents’ deaths: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance—adding interactive options for readers.

Five sections cover these common emotions and provide:

• comfort Scripture lists

• counsel sections from grief experts

• chronicling sections with detailed helps

• tangible handles on dealing with grief during holidays, capturing loved ones’ legacy, and more. 


Margaret McSweeney is a well-published author often writing online articles for Make It Better (the former North Shore Magazine) and freelance articles for the Daily Herald, the largest suburban Chicago newspaper. In addition, she has authored and compiled several books including A Mother’s Heart Knows; Go Back and Be Happy; Pearl Girls: Encountering Grit, Experiencing Grace and most recently, Mother of Pearl.

Margaret has a master’s degree from the University of South Carolina in international business. As is the founder of Pearl Girls, Margaret collaborates with other writers on projects to help fund a safe house for WINGS, an organization that helps women and their children who are victims of domestic violence, and to build wells for schoolchildren in Uganda through Hands of Hope. For the past 10 years she has served on the board of directors and leadership advisory board for WINGS. Margaret lives with her husband and 2 daughters in the Chicago suburbs. Learn more about Margaret and the work of Pearl Girls at www.margaretmcsweeney.com

BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE http://litfusegroup.com/blogtours/13529019/margaretmcsweeney 

LINK TO BUY THE BOOK http://ow.ly/cOiNu 


Are you grieving over the loss of a loved one? Do you know someone who is? If the answer to either question is yes, then I want to recommend this book to you. 

Margaret McSweeney has written a wonderful, heartfelt, and an open-hearted book about her own time of grief through the loss of her mother, father and brother. She bares her heart and soul in this book as she writes what she went through. She also incorporates her mother's poems and letters and various family letters from when her mother lost her husband to a heart attack.

I found Aftermath to be a helpful book for myself. It allowed me to look at what I went through when I lost my own mother to cancer. It opened up areas I didn't realize I had closed off, and has allowed the healing love of God to come in and apply His balm over these places in my heart.

At the end of each chapter Margaret has a section that allows the reader to write down thoughts and feelings such as: "What grief-guilt and I holding onto? Am I ready to give God the burden of this grief-guilt? What would I like to say to Him?" (That one hit home for me.... I didn't realize I was still holding onto grief-guilt.)

Also she provides scripture that gives hope to the reader. Not a lot. Just enough to ponder on and hold onto. My favorite one in one chapter is "And the peace that passeth all understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:7)

You will also find counsel from various reputed ministers, councilors and authors on the subject of grief and how to help someone through the grief process or yourself.

Margaret, through her openness, shows us that grief is natural, understandable, and for each person it lasts as long as necessary. She also reveals to us that God is more than aware of our grief and He is more than able to bear that load for us so it doesn't have to weigh us down into the mire. And if it does, He is able to pick us up and set our feet on the high places.

This is a book that will be a help and comfort for many who are grieving the loss of a loved one. 

I received this review book from Litfuse Publicity for the purpose of review, free of charge. I am under no obligation to give a positive review. All opinions I have given are my own.



Thursday, August 16, 2012


To celebrate the release of Mother of Pearl: Luminous Lessons and Iridescent Faith; I'm hosting an evening of chat, laughter, and encouragement on Facebook!

I've invited the Pearl Girl contributors to join us on the evening of September 4th. I'd be so honored if you'd come too!

We'll be giving away a ton of fun stuff {books, gift certificates and a Beautiful Pearl Necklace set}.

Mother of Pearl celebrates the collective iridescence of motherhood. We'll gather to connect, be encouraged and make some new friends!

So RSVP today and then come back on September 4th (at 5pm Pacific, 6pm Mountain, 7pm Central, and 8pm Eastern) and join us for the "Pearl" party. Let's share our stories and encourage one another.

We'll also have an update from the charities involved with Pearl Girls, Wings and Hands of Hope.

(See what others are saying about Mother of Pearl.)



America stands at a crossroads: culturally, economically, and politically. Enter The Tea Party Movement, whose focus is primarily fiscal conservatism, government accountability, and reduced taxation.

Currently, America suffers from a clash of worldviews, but the issue is much deeper than politics; it is ultimately a spiritual battle between good and evil. For the sake of generations to come, we need to win this war. We need to take action to defend our beliefs. We need to take the right road.

Link to watch the book trailer http://vimeo.com/32174674


A long-time resident of California, author and economist, Steve Johnston, B.S., J.D., earned a Juris Doctorate degree from Western State University of Law and a Theological degree from Calvary Chapel School of Ministry. Mr. Johnston has over 20 years experience in prison ministry and Bible teaching, and has served as a chaplain in Orange County and Los Angeles jails as well as Pelican Bay, a California maximum security prison.

Mr. Johnston describes his book, The Tea Party Culture War (WinePress, 2011) as a systematic manifesto of the Tea Party Movement. Mr. Johnston and his wife of 38 years divide their time between homes in Palm Desert, California and Brookings, Oregon. They have one adult daughter and one granddaughter.

Link to the tour landing page http://litfusegroup.com/blogtours/13522880 


If you want to know how America came to the place she is in financially, spiritually, culturally, then I would recommend this book. Steve Johnson takes us through the history of American economics, a government established with Biblical foundations, a country united under one God and more.

I learned many things about the Tea Party that I didn't know before. They aren't just about making noise and causing a ruckus. Their ideas and desires for this country are not just about restoring the country back to olden days, but awareness and responsibility in bringing this country back to the throne of God, financially, spiritually, culturally and in government. 

Steve has shown, through in-depth study and research how this country got off track in all areas that made it a great country. There were many things he brought up in this book that even I remember we used to do, such as pray in school before classes began. 

This is a book worth reading and pondering over. It is also a mighty tool to use when going to the voting booth. Do our representatives really represent us, those who still hold onto Christian values and morals? Is our constitution really the guide-line and is it being upheld in the manner our founding fathers outlined? Does it matter whether or not Christianity is what this country was founded on?

These are important questions and Steve Johnston has provided many answers. The real question is do you care about this country and the direction it is headed?

Read Tea Party Culture War, it will be worth it to you and future generations who depend on you to make right choices. It will remind you why this country was founded and Who it was founded on. 

This review was made possible by Litfuse Publicity Group. I received a free e-book copy for the purpose of reviewing. I am under no obligation to write a positive review.



Wednesday, August 15, 2012

MY POP-UP BIBLE STORIES Retold by Juliet David


With a pop-up scene on every page, children will cherish this selection of favorite stories from the Old and New Testaments. From the moment Baby Moses is found floating in a basket among the bulrushes to Jesus' stilling of the storm, children will be captivated by Daniel Howarth's remarkable illustrations as each story pops off the page. 

Stories include: Daniel, Baby Moses, Lost Sheep, Jairus's Daughter, and Stilling the Storm.


I have always loved pop-up books, ever since I was a child they were one of my favorite books. I have bought many pop-up books for my daughter when she was a child and I buy them for my grandchildren.

This one is exceptionally wonderful. The illustrations are eye-catching with vibrant colors. Each page will capture a child's eye with wonderful pop-ups and moving pieces. 

The stories are simple for a young child to grasp. There is also scripture reference to encourage family bible time and discussion with each story. Parents will be able to bring out the bible and show their young child the story they are reading, in it. What a wonderful way to share the Word of God.

This book will make a great gift to any young child in your life. It will introduce them not only to some of the great figures of the Bible but it also provides a wonderful introduction to Jesus, our Great Shepherd. It will foster a desire in a child to learn more about these stories in the bible, itself.

This review copy was provided by Kregel Publications for the purpose of reviewing freely. I only give my own opinion and thoughts. I am under no obligation to do otherwise.



Monday, August 6, 2012

GOD KNOWS YOUR NAME By Catherine Campbell


Contemporary and biblical stories offer hope to those struggling with rejection
  For many people the idea that God likes us as individuals, just as we are, is often an unfamiliar concept, while rejection--by a partner, one's parents, an employer, or friends--is a fact of life.

This book encourages readers to embrace the truth of a personal God with whom we do not need to struggle to gain recognition, a God who intervenes and acts on our behalf, a God who knows our names!

Each of the six chapters contains two stories dealing with situations of rejection. The first story concerns an individual from the Bible, explaining how God stepped in to change his or her situation, thus revealing how important the individual was to him.

The second, connecting story tells of a present day individual in similar circumstances and how God again positively intervened. These are true stories, using carefully researched material for authenticity and accuracy, and told with remarkable power and conviction.

Read an excerpt here http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?e=001bOIOIYb-I_-aC0ySCz6d_Pk32Twfk-bdAyYndS6--B4AXAY_CpX2ge1iWjQAdMhb-dlLgws_2lRVUZ-7UAxTUTY3tiIbVIwicjzW5dweyM9OmleK1qqe3yaFRSkbDZ5_TyxA2nbTs6rzNzg831tJfwZE6Iq-gXRhRwzPaE_l6OA=

Want to know about Catherine Campbell? View her video! http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?e=001bOIOIYb-I_8vrmuNH-42Ks4xmy5eihAxDUSfoeIoiZ2BUAjBGzviKvmQVdqwr1rrBMU4bUXILJy8l5tMgsK5X_YaDB06VOKMwAO0iJWnnoyRYriVnP3x6Q==

Be sure to go to Catherine's website and Facebook page! 
Website: http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?e=001bOIOIYb-I_888j2UEywc85lUA-oXh1TUtZseugmDEpWZf2PacQatPrpTWoqKOG1wZ3yO3D2A9jo5MfSq4rB56mxuIYy7mOIDHJ0IT34XcoW8HT_FO91khyRW2TSHgqkX 

Facebook page: http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?e=001bOIOIYb-I__FTtdm8y2qMtK1Pjid62t9b5ePXinsUITCEOAHGjiTeBm3BbDeXIDJXeR4qXOlqUQA9uQfVPFN8aLiNzwl2QO6FbZUNWXmyXcRVh173_5AOSuS09fHspNQ9qXOzuVaSNiX700jqyEYtQ== 


I feel reviewing books is a blessing not only for me but also for the author who took the time and effort to write a book on a subject that will interest someone out there in reader-land, and because of my review and the reviews of my fellow reviewers, that book is bought by many people.

Reviewing books is also a blessing especially for new authors with a voice that wants to be heard. So I get to "hear" what they are saying and pass it on to you. 

Having said that, I have to say Catherine Campbell has written an outstanding book. God Knows Your Name: In a world of rejection, He knows you, is timely, timeless, and beautiful.

Many, many times I had tears streaming down my face as I was reading this very moving book. Oh how she brought to life those stories we read in the Bible: Hagar, the man healed of leprosy, the woman with the issue of blood and more.   

Catherine combines a biblical character story with a contemporary story to reveal to us that no matter what others think about us, say about us, or even treat us, God knows our name and we are priceless to Him.

It doesn't matter if someone is born as a Dalit, or is merely a slave who must do their mistress's bidding, God knows our name. How transforming is that phrase when you think about it. 

We live with so much rejection, yet, God is there, waiting for us, calling us by name, and Catherine has captured the Father heart of God with each portrait she has painted with her words.

This book will bring you to your knees in gratitude, reverence, and humbled before the One who knew each one of us before the before the foundations of the earth was laid. 

This review was made possible by Kregel Publications. They provided me with a free review copy. I am under no obligation to write a positive review.