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emma holding Gabby's Stick to it Day Book

As you can see in the video, my daughter really enjoys Sophie and her guardian angel, Gabby. We have the two books that are currently available and I think this is a great series for little girls, ages 3-7, to collect and share with others. Sophie resonates with little girls and I know my little girl loves the idea of having a guardian angel.

The characters and events really help little ones see how our faith is lived out in the world. A memory verse is good, but teaching it through story makes the concept and meaning so much clearer.

I find the illustrations absolutely gorgeous, with beautiful colors, a bit of glitter and girly swirls. The facial expressions are so well drawn. This book is a pleasure to look at and I am glad it is hardcover.

Gabby’s Stick-to-It-Day

Gabby is a little guardian angel with a big job to do! Watching over Sophie is hard work, but Gabby knows that God wants her to stick to it.

Author Sheila Walsh is a Bible teacher, speaker, singer, and best-selling author. Visit www.sheilawalsh.com

Read more reviews or Buy the book. See our review of the first book in this series.

And there is more!

Meet Gabby for yourself here. || Read what people are saying here.

Enter today – Sheila and her publisher, Thomas Nelson, have put together a prize package worth over $200!

One lucky winner will receive:

  • A brand new KINDLE Fire with Wi-Fi
  • Gabby, God’s Little Angel
  • Gabby’s Stick-to-It-Day

But wait! There’s more …

The winner will be announced on the Gabby Landing page on 4/2/12. In the meantime, enter to win the Kindle Fire then head over to the TommyNelson site and download the Gabby coloring sheets, watch Sheila’s Gabby video, sign up for news about upcoming Gabby and Thomas Nelson products, and much more.

Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter

*I received a copy of Gabby’s Stick to it Day for my review from LitFuse. I have received no other compensation and have given my opinion.

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This debut Young Adult Fantasy Story is my daughter’s new favorite book!

This book is brand new in the young adult genre.

I was curious about it and liked the fact that the worldview is said to be Christian.

I gave this book right to my teen to see what she thought. She enjoyed the story so much, she wanted to know right away if there was a sequel. We looked it up, and no, there is no sequel yet. But this is a new author, so we will be watching for more!

Here’s what our teen has to say:

  • “Definitely a good book for highschoolers because of fast paced action and mystery.
  • Pulls you in. You have to read til the end right away.
  • Great imagery.
  • It should be turned into a movie! I know all my friends would go see it.
  • I can relate to Hadley (main character).
  • Even people I’m friends with who aren’t Christian would love this book.
  • Lots of plot twists. You expect one thing and then something opposite happens. It blows your mind.”

The Official Word:

In the mythical city of N’de lives thirteen-year-old Hadlay and her people, the Ramash. Scorned and abused by the unloving and absent Emperor, the Ramash are poor people, placed second to the ruling class of the Oresed. Young but bold, Hadlay rages against the injustice in her city. When she is chosen for the honor of serving the Prince in the Tower, she hopes to find a way to right the wrong… but soon discovers that things are worse than she believed.

Crafting powerful narrative and creative characters, author L. K. Malone spins a compelling tale that combines exciting entertainment and the Christian story. In The Mirror of N’de, readers will empathize with the desires of an oppressed people, will anger at the affliction of a cruel adversary, and ultimately rejoice with the revelation of a Savior.”

See the Blog Tour Schedule

Buy This Book

And, the publisher is sponsoring a $50 Amazon.com giveaway open to my blog readers! To enter all you have to do is send a tweet (using @litfuse) about The Mirror of N’de  or share about it on Facebook!

TWEET THIS: New YA fantasy – The Mirror of N’de – compelling narrative and creative characters! @litfuse RT for $50 to @amazon http://ow.ly/7AWGT

I received a copy of The Mirror of N’de from LitFuse for my review.

As usual, Susan May Warren does not disappoint.

I think Susan May Warren is a very good student of human nature. Her characters come to life in a few simple lines of text. This just amazes me, how quickly I feel like I know these people, these characters.

When I read her fiction novels, I become immersed in the story. I become engrossed not so much because of the well drawn settings or a particular poignant event, but because I want to see these people triumph over their circumstances, over horrible events and dreary days. I know that Warren’s worldview is one of hope and life…and I just cannot wait to see the storylines all unfold, to see her characters thrive, in the midst of trials, in the midst of fears and change.

Sometimes, some of the events in Warren’s character’s lives do take my breath away because they are so real, so sad. A lost child, an accident… a pain that will never go away. Even for the reader, it hurts for a moment to feel these experiences through the writer’s art.

Honestly, I hesitate a teeny bit every time I open a book by Warren. I know she doesn’t shirk away from writing about pain and I do shirk away from that.

But, after reading a few of her novels, I know that Warren is writing about Jesus in her character’s lives. And knowing Jesus is to know hope and peace, no matter the circumstances. Because Warren is a skillful writer, I expect her settings to be full of the nuances of time and place, and Baby, it’s Cold Outside is a trip back to 1947, complete with the music of that day, WWII tales and Storm Houses.

I do totally recommend this book. I don’t want to say too much about it, because I don’t want to be a spoiler! But, I will tell you, you will find enjoyable history, Christmastime Drama and Joy, a bit of cooking, a bit of kissing, and loads of fun characters in the midst of a giant snowstorm.

The Official Word: “Hope finds the hopeless when a storm hits.  

It’s Christmas weekend 1949, and despite the threat of a storm, the townspeople of Frost are determined to continue their holiday traditions, if only as a means to forget the war that they had all just suffered through. But the suffering hasn’t ended for Dottie Morgan who lost her only son in the war. She’s preparing to wallow in her isolation for the weekend, when Violet, nearly a spinster at age 29, dares to make a request that will force Dottie to publicly revive the memory of her dead son.

When a storm traps the two women at home with a strange young man who has an unbelievable confession and a neighbor with more to do with Violet’s past than she would like, no one can predict how this Christmas will give them all a second chance.”

Read an excerpt here and find out the story behind the novel

 Susan May Warren is an award-winning, best-selling author of over twenty-five novels, many of which have won the Inspirational Readers Choice Award, the ACFW Book of the Year award, the Rita Award, and have been Christy finalists. After serving as a missionary for eight years in Russia, Susan returned home to a small town on Minnesota’s beautiful Lake Superior shore where she, her four children, and her husband are active in their local church.

Susan’s larger than life characters and layered plots have won her acclaim with readers and reviewers alike. She is also the founder ofwww.MyBookTherapy.com, a story-crafting service that helps authors discover their voice.

A full listing of her titles, reviews and awards can be found at:www.susanmaywarren.com

Link to buy the book:  Baby, It’s Cold Outside (When I Fall in Love)

Warm up to Chrismtas early this year with Susan May Warren’s Baby, It’s Cold Outside! To celebrate the release of her new Christmas book with Summerside Press, she and the publisher are giving away a Kindle Fire and hosting an early Christmas Party on Facebook!

Read what the reviewers are saying here.

One festive winner will receive:

  • A brand new Kindle Fire
  • Baby, It’s Cold Outside by Susan May Warren

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. Giveaway ends on 10/26!

But, wait there’s more! Join Susan May Warren on 10/27 for merriment and a few early Christmas presents at her Baby, It’s Cold Outside Christmas party! Grab your Christmas sweaters, socks and pj’s and join Susan and a few friends for a fireside chat about her recent books (Heiress & Baby, It’s Cold Outside), holiday traditions, favorite Christmas recipes, a trivia contest and more! Invite your friends and don’t miss the fun!

RSVP here and we’ll see you on October 27th at 5 PM PST / 8 PM EST!

Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter

 

” I received a copy of Baby It’s Cold Outside, from LitFuse for my review. I have given my opinion. There may be affiliate links in this post.”

 

Hmmm. I think I'd be ok, being on this road instead of at my desk!!

Hmmm. I think I'd be ok, being on this road instead of at my desk!!

My daughter cracked me up when I got this book to review. She asked,

“Mom, what’s this book? Those parents are mean, they have shoes, but they don’t buy shoes for their children!”

After I laughed, and explained to her that the children were most likely simply allowed to run barefoot in the Summer.

Then I wondered how many misperceptions I have of the Amish. I thought about what I knew about them…mainly nothing, picked up from that movie Witness and some other random media, I suppose. Overall, I don’t have a real negative perception, I just haven’t thought much about their culture.

Amish Values sm websiteAfter reading this book, I have to say that many of the stories made me laugh and reminded me of my own family! Maybe we had television and cars, but my parents always protected our family time and raised us to know our faith and to respect our elders, pointed out dangerous cultural trends…taught us to have common sense!

When I was asked to review this book, I was given an assignment–basically to choose a particular story and see how it might apply to my life. I figured I would read for awhile–thinking I’m pretty smart and I probably know much of this–and eventually find something that I could incorporate in my life.

Well, I got to page nineteen, which was right in the beginning! There was a story about The Rabbit Hutch. The proverb accompanying the story is: “A family that works together, grows together.”

In this tale, an Amish family and a non-Amish family are neighbors. One of the Dads builds a rabbit hutch with his son, while the other proudly points out they are on sale at the local hardware store…and “why bother” to build one that probably costs more than the on sale, pre-made ones. he says there is “no reason to reinvent the wheel.”

No reason…to which the Amish father replies “Unless you’re trying to teach your son how to use a hammer and saw…Unless you want to give your son skills he can use for a lifetime. Unless…you’re trying to to teach him to build things that last. To take pleasure in his work…those good talks a father and son have while they’re working together, side by side.” If you don’t mind missing those things, then sure, buy the hutch.”

I loved this story. As a family, we really try to have family time and teach our children useful skills. But, we are somewhat “in” the culture and our time is divided and we are busy. I often think of things I would like to learn and teach “when I have time.”

This story reminded me that I do have a set amount of time, and I choose how to use it…and I need to remember to judge not just the immediate value of an item or job…but the long term value of some choices–to learn to sew together rather than find a good deal shopping, for example.

Now, that took alot from me to decide to try to sew, because I hate it and have never done it! So, you can say this book has had a profound effect on me, hahaha!

Anyway, I have tons to say about this book, but my post is already so long. Shoot. But, mainly, I encourage you to take a look into a simpler world and see what you can take from it and enjoy.

The Official Word:

Suzanne Woods Fisher is thrilled to announce the release of  Amish Values for Your Family: What We Can Learn from the Simple Life her latest non-fiction release.

“It offers loving ways to bring your fractured home back to life-Amish style. Read it and apply generously! It’s a beautiful book-funny, charming, soulful, and beautiful.” -Mary Ann Kirkby

For readers who long for strong families that know how to truly enjoy life together, there is much to learn from the Amish. Values like community, forgiveness, simple living, obedience, and more can be your family legacy–without selling your car, changing your wardrobe, or moving out to farm country.

In Amish Values for Your Family, bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher shows how you can adopt the wisdom of the Amish when it comes to family matters. In this inspiring and practical book readers will find charming true stories interlaced with solid, biblical advice about parenting, marriage, and all aspects of family life. As readers get an intimate glimpse into the everyday lives of real Amish families, they will learn to prioritize what’s truly important, simplify decision-making, slow down as a family, safeguard time together, and let go when the time comes.

Read the reviews here.

To celebrate the release of Amish Values for Your Family, Suzanne has teamed up her publisher Revell Books to giveaway a Kindle, and with Bill Coleman (the amazing photographer used on Suzanne’s book covers) to give away a signed Bill Coleman original.

One Grand Prize winner will receive an Amish Values Prize Package (valued at over $200) and includes:
* A brand new KINDLE
* A Signed Bill Coleman original
* Amish Values for Your Family (for KINDLE)

Enter 8/15 – 8/31!

Winner will be announced on 9/2 at Suzanne’s blog. Be sure to stop by the blogs on Suzanne’s blog tour – many have copies of Amish Values for Your Family to give away.

But, wait there’s more! Suzanne is running a Bill Coleman caption contest during the month of August on her blog. Title one of Bill’s gorgeous photos for a chance to win a print from Bill’s Amish Photo site and/or a copy of Amish Values for Your Family.

I received this book for review from LitFuse.

Safe From The Past Review

Heather —  August 1, 2011

patricia munroe

The Official Word:
A kidnapping, the divorce of her parents, the loss of her father, temporary abandonment and extreme poverty are just some of the issues the author dealt with as a young child.

Her mother finally tells her she must go to college so she can break out of this cycle of poverty and hopelessness. But how can she when she has no money and absolutely no confidence or self esteem?

Read this true story to discover what hope, faith and determination can do to change a life.
A truly inspiring, deeply personal tale of perseverance in the face of unimaginable hardships, Safe from the Past makes clear the restorative power of an education.

Told in an open, honest voice with the deepest sincerity, the author’s life story serves as a rousing inspiration to those with the desire to create a better life than the one they are currently living.

No matter how helpless you feel, everyone has the power to shape their own life.

My thoughts: This is a hard one for me to write, maybe because I really cannot understand the place the author is coming from. I liked the author’s honesty, but I was upset by the truth that she had to leave her younger sister behind to make her way and was ultimately unable to get her mother any help. Hits too close to a family I know and some of the facts of the lives are just lost in all the mess.

I think the book is a good warning that many growing up in difficult households lack even the necessities of life, much less a chance to develop self-esteem.

I respected the writer’s ability to trust in God even though all her earthly caretakers let her down. That, to me, is a miracle. I am glad Patricia survived and was able to achieve security and success.

This book is appropriate for adults.

Patricia worked in New York City’s financial district for thirteen years in the field of securities operations. At that time, she went on to obtain an MBA from New York University. She and her husband moved to Dallas, TX in 2001 where they are raising their two children. For more information please visit, www.patriciamaurobooks.com

Buy the book

See other opinions from the Blog Tour for the book

And, LitFuse is Sponsoring a $30 Amazon Giveaway!
To enter all you have to do is send a tweet (using #litfuse) about Safe From the Past or share about it on Facebook
If you tweet we’ll capture your entry when you use @litfuse. If you share it on Facebook or your blog, just email us and let us know (info@litfusegroup.com). Easy.

This popped into my mind this morning. Hope someone can make use of this!

For all my book loving friends–here are a few ways to get yourself some inexpensive or free books to read poolside this summer:

There is a new Barnes and Noble promotion today:

Favorite Paperbacks – Buy 2 Get the 3rd for FREE Offer Details

While supplies last, choose 3 qualifying books from our Favorite Paperbacks promotion and the least expensive book is yours for FREE! Simply look for the Buy 2 Get the 3rd free icon on select paperback books online and in-store at Barnes&Noble.com. This offer expires at 2:59 a.m. ET 5/6/10.

There are also many places you can get books if you agree to review them on your blog. Click on the icons below to see if you have any interest in this. Personally, I like to be able to choose which books I receive, so I work with the ones below. The following are Christian Publishing Houses. I am sure you could also do a search on book blogging, etc to find others.

Also, you can fan some of these programs on Facebook. Many of them do promotions and contests through FB and you can win free books:)

I review for BookSneeze

Blogging_For_Books_250

Join the Flock! LitFuse Publicity Group blogger

I Review For The Tyndale Blog Network

Here are two others, thanks to Debra, who blogs over at Footprints in the Butter and is a homeschool mom who teaches her kids all kinds of classical stuff and is a crazy, voracious reader I mean, involved in tons of reading memes!

Bethany House: www.bethanyhouse.com/bookreviewers
NavPress: http://www.navpress.com/bloggerreviewprogram.aspx

________________________________________________________________________________________

And, don’t forget to check out the upcoming Book Blogger Convention. (I REALLY wanted to go, but it looks like I did not prepare well enough. The Convention is in New York City) Check out the site and you can find many other book reviews and bloggers:

Book Blogger Convention

Double Trouble by Susan May Warren

Heather —  February 24, 2010

doubletrouble

Check out the blog tour for Susan May Warren’s latest release, Double Trouble.

Looking for a break? Read this book:) The book is a fabulous follow-up to Nothing But Trouble and the contest prize package is perfect!

I am in love with this series! With 5 children, one with a newly diagnosed special need, I am hard pressed to focus on anything. Suffice it to say, I am a hard critic. I will not even consider books I know I may not “get” into easily. I am normally a book lover, but with so much going on, I am viewing my reading pile warily—

However, I was hopeful about this book. “I need a break,” my spirit was practically begging.

Anyway…at first glance, I loved the colorful and youthful cover of Double Trouble. And, I have to admit, I was drawn to the title…even as I walk with God, I still tend to find trouble myself. With two hot guys, plenty of drama and a funny, loveable protagonist and heroine, I have to say, the book was exactly what I needed to drag myself out of the doldrums of winter!

I grew up in the South myself and have a fondness for all things warm, polite and hmmm…complicated!

Within the pages of this book, you can follow PJ as she tries to figure out how to solve crimes and protect witnesses. Ironically, as PJ solves the puzzles other people throw at her, she also figures out who she is…and who she wants to be.

The book is a mixture of Mystery and Chick Literature. The Christian message permeates the story and really speaks of God’s love, which suits the characters very nicely (enough said…no spoilers, here). I give this one a high 5.

After reading Double Trouble, I really wanted to read Nothing but Trouble. Lucky for me, the sweet LitFUSE people hooked me up! I really find the whole series endearing. PJ has so much personality and goes through so many struggles, as we all do, to find out who she really is. And, we get to see God walking with her every step of the way. It becomes obvious to the reader, that PJ’s heart is just so in the right place. How Warren also manages such a cast of characters and a mystery at the same time is beyond me.

I have to say, I totally recommend both books and hear there is a third coming out in Spring!!

The Official Word on Double Trouble:
With one solved case under her belt, PJ Sugar is ready to dive into her career as a private investigator. Or at least a PI’s assistant until she can prove herself to Jeremy Kane, her new boss. Suddenly PJ’s seeing crime everywhere. But is it just in her head, or can she trust her instincts? When she takes on her first official case–house-sitting for a witness in protective custody–Jeremy assures her there’s no danger involved. But it soon becomes clear that there is someone after the witness . . . and now they’re after PJ, too.

Comment to get in on this Prize Package!

Enter the Double Trouble Prize Package Giveaway by clicking on the ‘Double the Sass” button below! The author, Susan, is giving away an iPod prize package that is anything but troubling! Check it out!

DoubleTrouble

One Grand Prize winner will receive a $150 SUPER SLEUTH prize package that includes:

* A brand new iPod Shuffle (perfect for those all-night stakeouts)
* A $10 iTunes gift card (we recommend the ALIAS soundtrack)
* A $10 Amazon gift card (why yes, they do sell spy pens)
* A $10 Starbucks gift card (for fuel, obviously)
* A pair of designer sunglasses (be stealthy AND super chic)
* A gorgeous scarf from World Market (can also be used as a blindfold, and/or for tying up bad guys)
* AND signed copies of both Nothing But Trouble & Double Trouble. (romance! danger! intrigue! sooo much better than Surveillance for Dummies!)

They will announce the super sleuth winner on March 1st.

About Susan:
MBT writing headshotSusan May Warren is the RITA award-winning author of twenty-four novels with Tyndale, Barbour and Steeple Hill. A four-time Christy award finalist, a two-time RITA Finalist, she’s also a multi-winner of the Inspirational Readers Choice award, and the ACFW Book of the Year. Her larger than life characters and layered plots have won her acclaim with readers and reviewers alike. A seasoned women’s events and retreats speaker, she’s a popular writing teacher at conferences around the nation and the author of the beginning writer’s workbook: From the Inside-Out: discover, create and publish the novel in you!. She is also the founder of My Book Therapy, a story-crafting service that helps authors discover their voice. Susan makes her home in northern Minnesota, where she is busy cheering on her two sons in football, and her daughter in local theater productions (and desperately missing her college-age son!) A full listing of her titles, reviews and awards can be found at: SusanMayWarren.com

Check out the blog tour for Susan May Warren’s latest release, Double Trouble.

Go here to purchase your copy of Nothing but Trouble, and here to get Double Trouble.

Special thanks to LitFuse for providing a copy of Nothing But Trouble and Double Trouble for me to read and review!

9780825463167I have always been a horse lover. As a young child, I did have my own horse. We ended up moving and I never did own a horse again, but I will never forget how much I enjoyed riding and just being around horses. Someday, I hope to again spend some time with horses.

Meanwhile, when I requested this book, I am not sure quite what I expected. But, I felt drawn to the book. After reading the story, I realize I needed to read the book, not because it had horses but because of Dr. Sterrett’s message—the importance of the Gospel, and a message that focuses on the importance of being a leader who leads by sharing hope and earning the trust of those around him.

The story is artfully told with a gentle rhythm. Dr. Sterrett gracefully leads his reader through a wealth of experiences and shows the dignity of respect and hard work.

As a mother and step mother, I found the book challenging…and enlightening. So many struggles we go through can be made easier and end more successfully with just a bit of grace and gentleness.

I highly recommend this book. Thank you to Dr. Sterrett and his co-writer, Bob Smietana.

The Official Word:

A champion trainer and true horse whisperer, Dr. Lew Sterrett has used patience and a firm but gentle hand to earn the trust of more than 3,500 horses. In this book, Lew tells the stories of his work with these horses and the lessons each one has taught him. Sometimes heartbreaking and often uplifting, Lew has condensed his lifetime of learning into messages for the Christian life. Today, Lew shares these messages with more than 50,000 people each year through horse training presentations at Miracle Mountain Ranch and nationally through his Sermon on the Mount Ministry.

The author’s engaging style and adroit mixture of well-tested anecdotes and thoughtful instruction make this a winning read-and not just for horse lovers.

Find out more about Dr. Lew Sterrett on his website: http://www.sermononthemount.org/

Go here to purchase Life Lessons from a Horse Whisperer.

You can read an excerpt, here. And, check out the Blog Tour, here!

Tweet the following to be entered to win a $50 Amazon gift card & signed copies of Lew’s book!

TWEET THIS: (must use hashtag #lewsterrett to be entered – no limit on entries! Tweet away!)

Life Lessons from a Horse Whisperer: not just for horse lovers! http://ow.ly/169ym RT to win $50 to @amazon #LewSterrett

Thanks to LitFUSE for providing a copy of this book for my review.