Category Archives: Fiction

A Harvest of Home

I was thrilled to see the second book of the Song of Blessing series on my list of books to choose from.  Lauraine Snelling continues to be one of my all time favorite authors and this book did not disappoint me.

Miriam Hastings is home in Chicago, taking care of her siblings following the death of their mother.  She is continuing her nursing training and longing for the life and people she left behind in Blessing.  She knows that she will be returning to Blessing for another year and isn’t sure how that will fit into her life now.  But letters from Trygve Knutson continue to reach her and mix up her mind and heart.

Trygve is home, in Blessing, building a house and loving Miriam from afar.  Life in Blessing is also not very simple right now as characters we remember from the last series struggle to make ends meet and fight for their way of life.  When Miriam finally returns to Blessing, and plunges straight into work, she finds herself up against more and more decisions.  Her siblings need her, others are asking more and more of her, and Trygve is claiming space in her heart.

Where will Miriam end up in the end?  Back in Chicago?  Or at home in Blessing?

My Thoughts…

I loved this book!  The nursing side story is fascinating to me and the characters are full and rich.  The Godly theme though the whole book is refreshing, I love how Snelling weaves the Gospel and God’s love into all her books.

Highly recommended.

5 out of 5 Stars

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Where Treetops Glisten

I was looking for something to read during the Christmas season, and stumbled upon this delightfully old-fashioned book.  Journey back to America during World War II and experience Christmas through the eyes of the Turner family.  This book is actually a collection of three stories, each by a difference award winning author.

Cara Putman’s “White Christmas” stars Abigail Turner, a college student with a troubled heart.  But her path crosses with a very troubled young man, who needs friends that will reach out to him. Sarah Sundin once again weaves a story of  fighter pilot in “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”  Pete returns home to recover from the war, and encounters a tiny girl who captures his heart.  Her quest for her lost father leads Pete to her mother, a girl he hurt years ago.  And Tricia Goyer finishes the collection with “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”.  Meredith (Merry) is serving as a combat nurse, losing herself in her work rather than face her broken heart.  But God leads her face to face with her greatest fear, causing her to wonder if it may be a Merry Christmas after all.

This collection of simple, heartwarming stories was a relaxing read that kept me engrossed from cover to cover.  Each of these ladies is a talented, creative author who weaves stories of realistic characters and the joy of the holiday season.  I highly recommend this read for your Christmas shelf.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars.

A Bride in Store by Melissa Jagears

Mail order bride, Eliza Cantrell, heads out to meet her groom.  He owns a general store, and Eliza is chomping at the bit to help him with his work.  But when she arrives, Axel is nowhere to be found and his business partner, William, dislikes the business and would rather be a doctor.  When Eliza arrives in town, penniless and alone, William tries to take care of her – in honor of his absent partner.  Eliza soon becomes indispensable around the store… which leads to some tension.   And even though she’s promised to another, Eliza finds herself spending more and more time with William.

Overall, I thought this book lacked a strong plot line and good characters.  It was a light read, that just failed to bring me in.  I’ll give it 3 out of 5 stars.

Thief of Glory by Sigmund Brouwer

Jeremiah Prins is 10 years old, and leads a sheltered, pampered life in the East Indies.   In 1942, when the Japanese Imperialist invasion begins, Jeremiah’s life is turned upside down and backwards.   He becomes the man of the house for his younger siblings, and realizes that his mother needs more care than he realized.

Life in the camp is full of hardship, cruelty, and a life that Jeremiah never imagined possible.  He comes to lean on Laura, who is quickly becoming his best friend.  Jeremiah and Laura learn a lot about the strength that God gives and the light that shines in the dark as they live through the horrors of camp, and find beauty in life.  But it’s what happens later in life… when Jeremiah is 81 that will bring tears to your eyes.

This book was good and powerful.  I found it a little slow going, but it was good.  And I love historical fiction.  I’ll give it a 4 out of 5 stars.

With Every Breath by Elizabeth Camden

Thanks to antibiotics, tuberculosis is a thing in the past, that we just don’t think much about.  But in the late 1900s, it was the leading cause of death.  Patients were outcast victims, shunned and ignored by the public.  Desperate to find a cure, doctors began experimenting with surgeries and treatments.  Some of these were cruel and barbaric – killing the patients before tuberculosis got to them.  But other doctors had gentle methods and sought to heal with sunshine, good food, medicine, and lots of prayer.

Trevor McDonough, is just such a doctor.  A well respected graduate of Harvard, Trevor is taking a risk treating patients with tuberculosis.  He takes the failing patients, the ones that are dying and seeks to find a way to help them.  To reverse the damage this disease is doing to their lungs.  

Kate Livingston knew Trevor in grade school, but they didn’t part on the best of terms.  Now he asks for her in particular as his assistant.  Kate’s openness and Trevor’s distance hit heads at first, but they soon develop a friendship.  But then dark secrets from their past start coming out, and Trevor’s are the darkest of all.  Can Kate live with Trevor’s past?  And what that means for his future?

This was a wonderful, light read.  The romance element was woven into the story, and wasn’t silly or overdone.  You found yourself rooting for these characters, willing Trevor to find a cure!  

Rating 4 out of 5 stars.

Child of Mine by David and Beverly Lewis

“What a tangled web we weave…”

Although that quotation does not actually appear in Child of Mine, it reminded me of it.  The the overarching theme of how one lie leads to another, so easily, is convicting.

Eight year old Natalie lives with her uncle, Jack, who adopted her when her parents were killed.   Eight years ago Kelly’s baby was kidnapped and sold for drug money.   Two stories and two lives.  So far apart and so intertwined.  Or are they?

When Jack is traveling, Natalie is cared for by her Amish nanny, Laura Mast.  And Kelly spends her day lying to mothers as she tries to run genetic tests on their young daughters.   One final, desperate lead drops Kelly into the lives of Jack and Natalie – confusing and complicating their lives.

When Jack finds that Kelly has used them and lied to him, what will that do their friendship?  And what will the genetic test say when it comes back?

What I Thought

This book was well written, intriguing, and interesting.  I enjoyed every minute of reading it, and would recommend it to anyone looking for a pleasant, quiet read.  Only two things bugged me:

1) You end up getting frustrated with Kelly when she just won’t come clean and stop lying.

2) The part with Laura Mast, the Amish nanny, felt a little forced.  Like they really just wanted to just have an Amish character in the story and didn’t know where to put her.

But like I said, I enjoyed it, and would recommend it.

4 out of 5 Stars

Undetected by Dee Henderson

My sisters and I have been waiting and waiting for this book to come out.  And Dee Henderson did not disappoint us.  This book combines intense action, cliff hanger suspense, and a touch of romance to make for a wonderful read.  Definitely my favorite so far in her newest series.

What I Liked

Gina Gray is highly intelligent, very successful, and a little lonely.  She would love to be married, but her brains seem to run men off.  While the U. S. Government can’t imagine life without her, Gina wishes for someone who would care about her.  Mark Bishop is a submarine commander, who understands better than anyone the power of Gina’s discoveries.

On his trip home, he encourages Gina to go out on dates with another submariner.  Only to discover he’s the man for Gina.  Now he has to convince Gina of this and figure out a way to protect her from herself.  Especially when she makes another powerful, world shaking discovery.

What I Didn’t Like

I have to wait another year before she writes the next one!

Five out of five stars!