Monday, October 31, 2011


Title:  The Wonder of Your Love
Author:  Beth Wiseman
Publisher:  Thomas Nelson
Available:  Now
Source:  LitFuse Blog Tour

To Buy the Book:

                                     The Wonder of Your Love Facebook Party on 11/1!
Beth is celebrating the release of Book 2 in the Land of Canaan series with a Fabulous Facebook party on November 1st. She'll be giving away one of her OWN paintings, several mini prize packs and a sneak peak at the next book in this heartwarming series. CLICK the button (below) to RSVP for the party - then join us on November 1st for a book chat, Amish themed trivia contest, and more!

About the book:
Katie Ann lost the love of her life. Then God offers her a new beginning in Colorado. Katie Ann Stolzfus lives in the small Amish community of Canaan, Colorado. At forty she is widowed and raising her first child. But baby Jonas will never know his father, and Katie Ann wonders if her Heavenly Father hasn't forgotten about her as well. Is it really God's plan for her to be a single parent? Eli Detweiler has come to Canaan for a wedding and a long vacation. Having raised six children following the death of his young wife, Eli is finally an empty-nester. He's enjoying the slower pace of having no one to care for but himself. When Katie Ann and Eli meet, there is an instant connection. Yet as strong as the attraction is, they both acknowledge that a romance would never work. He is done parenting, while she has just begun. But as their friendship slowly blossoms into feelings that are as frightening as they are intoxicating, Katie Ann and Eli question if the plans they made for themselves are in line with God's plans. Can Katie Ann entrust her heart to another man, and rediscover the wonder of God's love? 

My Take:
This is book 2 of The Land of Canaan series and I have not read book 1, but wasn't too lost during the book.  There were a couple of things I wish I would have known but it wasn't hard to figure out the general idea of the past.  I did like the general idea of the book...a book about those farther along in their lives, not young adults finding their way like so many of the Amish books out there now.  There were a few things that made me say 'hmm'... such as the reliance on cell phones and the 'we're just friends' that kiss alot.  Seems a little off from what I know of the Amish faith.  However..  it is a totally new look at the Amish and their friendship with outsiders and how much interaction there is that isn't seen in many other books.  There were two lost love stories in this book...but so totally different that you find yourself cheering for each one!  If you are looking for a lighthearted Amish fiction that doesn't dwell too much on the Church aspects of the Amish...pick this up! 

About Beth: 
Beth Wiseman is hailed as a top voice in Amish fiction. She is a Carol-award winner and author of numerous bestsellers including the Daughters of the Promise series and the Land of Canaan series. She and her family live in Texas., Twitter @bethwiseman,  

I was given a copy of this book for a review.  No otehr compensation was givein!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Lily Renee, Escape Artist {review}

Title: Lily Renee, Escape Artist
Author: Trina Robbins
Artist: Anne Timmons and mo oh
Publisher: Lerner
Source: Netgalley
Available: 11/01/11

About the Book:
Lily Renee Wilheim is 14 years old when the Nazis march into her beloved country and her life is changed forever. Her family decides that for her own survival, she should leave Austria and travel to England. However, life in England isn't as pleasant as it was made out to be and she finds the need to escape her current conditions into something better, but then even the English seem to think that all refugees are criminals and start to grab them up. She finally finds herself on a boat to America...hoping that this move would be her last.

My take:
Having never really read a graphic novel before, I wasn't sure what to expect. Then when the book started talking about the holocaust and Nazis in comic book form I was kind of flabbergasted. Then I got it. Lily Renee Wilheim probably loves this book. Why? Because she was a very good cartoonist herself during those early years in America. After I had my epiphany, I realized that I really like graphic novels. The book did seem a bit rushed at times though, I would have really liked to see more about her struggles as woman in a male dominated world as well as more about her life in England. The pictures were amazing and seemed to transport me right back to the horrible time of history. If you have a reluctant pre-teen reader, set them up with this book. It may just interest them in reading and history. It was a different take on a time of our history that some people are intent on trying to forget. If you are a graphic novel reader...I'd have to tell you to give this a look, even if it is a real life story!

From the publishing house....
About the Author
Trina Robbins is the author of numerous nonfiction and fiction books and comics for children and adults, including several histories of women cartoonists. A pioneer in comics herself, she took part in the underground comix movement of the 1960s and illustrated the Woman Woman comic book. Most recently, she authored the Chicagoland Detective Agency graphic novel series. She lives in San Francisco with her partner, comics artist Steve Leialoha.
About the Artists
Anne Timmons was born in Portland, Oregon, and received her BFA from Oregon State University. In addition to her collaboration with Trina Robbins on the Lulu Award-winning GoGirl!, Anne's work includes the Eisner-nominated Dignifying Science, as well as Pigling: A Cinderella Story.
mo oh likes to draw. She also likes to read, bake, eat (mostly eat), make plants grow (mainly for eating), and sit in the sun. She recently graduated from the Center for Cartoon Studies in Vermont with an MFA in cartooning and works occasionally as a sketch/concept artist for a small game company. She lives in Northampton, Massachusetts.

6 thumbs up! it from Netgalley so I didn't pay for it (but I'll probably be getting it for my non reader middle school daughter) but I all I was asked for was a honest review which I gave...all thoughts are mine!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Spooktacul​ar Giveaway Hop

It's that time again!  Time for another spectacular blog hop sponsored by I am a Reader, Not a Writer and The Diary of a Bookworm!  Thank  you so much!!  Thank you for chancing upon my blog for a chance to win one of three prizes!  Yep...3 winners!  Thx to the publishers for providing the books!   I'll email the winners on November 2nd and as always if no response in 3 days...I will choose another winner! 
So...You can win..

Love on the Line by Deeanne Gist

Not one but all three books in the Iron Elves Trilogy by Chris Evans

and because it was so popular last time..  a $10 gift certificate to the Book Depository!

Fill out and follow instructions in the form below for your chance to win!

I forgot to include my twitter handle for one extra entry so you can use the follow me button on the
sidebar or follow #twinmomx5

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Guest Post from Patti Lacy!!!

I was lucky enough to be chosen to host Patti for a guest post spot on my blog and I tell you I couldn't be happier!!!  I love learning about other countries through books and knowing that Patti goes way beyond researching the background for her books I'm really excited to learn more about China and the Cultural Revolution.  So...Patti is here to tell you exactly.....

What is the Chinese Cultural Revolution?
By Patti Lacy
Wow! I am getting the history and sociocultural questions galore! This actually has been fun—thanks!!!

What’s the Cultural Revolution? It’s a blazing bonfire of books and musical instruments and “useless” things. It’s destroying even a pretty flower for having bourgeois tendencies. It’s being imprisoned, beaten, denounced for desiring education, all in the name of a return to peasant values. It’s birds, being slaughtered for eating precious grain during drought times, which led to a population explosion in beetles, which gobbled more grain. Such poignant memoirs as Wild Swans and Oracle Bones provided examples that made my skin crawl. Ask most Chinese who endured this time period, and they’ll say the Cultural Revolution was hell on earth.

Scholars identify the decade from 1966 to 1976 as the time when Mao Zedong, leader of China’s newly victorious Communist Party, "purified" China and encouraged his Red Guards to attack traditional and "bourgeois" values and test party officials by publicly criticizing them. Many elderly people and intellectuals were verbally attacked, physically abused, and some were killed.

During this insidious time, only Mao could be worshipped. Buddhists and Christians alike suffered for their faith. Many were sent to the countryside "to receive re-education from poor farmers and peasants" and were forced to do heavy manual labor, fueled only by a few grains of rice and thin porridge.
So why did I choose to include stories about the Cultural Revolution in Reclaiming Lily? In a way only God could’ve ordained, my mom’s cancer doctor found out I was a writer and agreed to talk to me on Sunday, the only time she wasn’t seeing patients and studying charts. In a soft voice, Dr. Chang described how, during the Cultural Revolution, her educated father and mother were dragged from their home and imprisoned in the basement of the local school that Dr. Chang and her sisters attended. At recess, the prisoners would be led to an area where Dr. Chang and her classmates would play. Students hurled rocks and sticks and shouted denunciations at the “class criminals,” who often had only wanted a better life for their family. Imagine, being abused for owning a book or a vase! Dr. Chang began to cry as she shared how she, too, joined in the horrid activity.
For several years, the three Chang sisters battled starvation and the taunts of neighbors. Schools closed, and the Chang girls boarded up their windows, fearful that soldiers would break in and rape or beat them. Then their parents limped home from jail, bringing their pains and terrors with them. For the Chang sisters, the nightmare had only begun…
Though Reclaiming Lily is not set during the Cultural Revolution era, through flashbacks, I time travel to share what DID happen to the Changs.

Okay. You wanna know how it turned out, huh? You didn’t think I was gonna tell you the whole story, did you???

About the BookA storm the size of Texas brews when Gloria Powell and Kai Chang meet in a Dallas hotel. They have come to discuss the future of Lily, the daughter Gloria adopted from China and the sister Kai hopes to reclaim. Kai is a doctor who had to give up her little sister during the Cultural Revolution and has since discovered that an inherited genetic defect may be waiting to fatally strike Lily.

Gloria's relationship with her daughter is tattered and strained, and the arrival of Kai, despite the woman's apparent good intentions, makes Gloria fearful. Gloria longs to restore her relationship with Lily, but in the wake of this potentially devastating diagnosis, is Kai an answer to prayer...or will her arrival force Gloria to sacrifice more than she ever imagined?

About the AuthorPatti Lacy graduated from Baylor University in 1977 with a BS in education. She taught at Heartland Community College in Normal, Illinois, until she retired in 2006 to pursue writing full time. She and her husband, Alan, have two grown children. Visit Patti at


I don't know how I ended up being able to learn so much more about this book with this tour, but I'm so excited to post more about it!  The history of China is a definite eye opener for this Midwesterner (central IL isn't exactly the hotbed of action!) This book had me hooked from page one.  Knowing several families and their journey to the foreign lands to adopt children and their struggle before, during and after this book fed into my heart more deeply than other historical fiction books.  This book is definitely on the heavy side of reading and learning and caring and get the point!  If you are prone to be emotional during reads...then I'd suggest a tissue or two at hand!  Having read her earlier works, I'd have to say this is even a stronger voice than Rhythms of Secrets and while the writing style is the same, there is definite growth as a writer and I can't wait to read the next book!  I really liked the fact that we learned the story in bits and pieces because as tragic as the story was, I'm not sure I could have handled it all at once.  I will warn you that if you question the whys to life, this book will surely make you do that. Not only this story, but the real life stories of so many who have adopted or lived during this time in China's not so distant history.  Okay..because I want you to read this one..I'll stop and urge you to go out and get it!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Great Picture Books to pick up this fall!

If You Give A Dog A Donut by Laura Numeroff

If your little one loved The Cat, The Mouse, The Moose, and The Pig..pick this one up for another jam packed book of consequences!

MOO by Matthew Van Fleet
I love this interactive book about farm animals. 
 The textures are great and add to the activities.

Noodle Loves to Cuddle by Nosy Crow

This is another cute  rhyming board book that shows Noodle cuddling with all sorts of things...including his mom! Great nap time book.

Tuesday will be designated picture book stay tuned for more books to share!

I received all these books from the library!  I just wanted to share the no disclosure needed...just wanted to dot my i's and cross my t's!

Discover God’s Great Blessings with award-winning author Patricia Raybon

ONE YEAR God’s Great Blessings Devotional
Want half a blessing? Or God’s best? Award-winning author Patricia Raybon dares to pursue God’s greatest in her new One Year® devotional, God’s Great Blessings. Join her search for the enriching secrets of a bold Christian life, exploring 52 biblical values and virtues that God blesses not because we’re good but because He’s God. This path is uplifting, challenging, sometimes surprising but always transforming. Get on board with our Blessing God for the life-changing journey.
About the Author
Award-winning writer Patricia Raybon is author of two critically acclaimed books, “I Told the Mountain to Move” and “My First White Friend.” Her personal essays have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, USA Weekend, Charles Stanley Ministries’ In Touch Magazine and have also aired on National Public Radio. She writes full-time on life-changing faith. Visit Patricia’s Website at

Bound for Glory (Coming November 1, 2011)
This powerful gift book is inspired by a stunning collection of calligraphic paintings by world-renowned calligrapher Timothy R. Botts and featuring reflections in verse by award-winning author Patricia Raybon. The book’s 52 paintings are visual interpretations—in words and pictures—of African American spiritual songs. These amazing songs are an important part of our American heritage, and they continue to give us hope in the face of life’s many challenges. The book also includes 52 reflective readings from Botts and African-American writer Patricia Raybon. It also includes lyrics from the spirituals along with inspirational Scripture verses from the New Living Translation.

Video Trailers for God’s Great Blessing Devotional

My Take:
This is a powerful packed devotional that will leave you breathless and ready to commit to living for God.  I unfortunately didn't receive the book to do a full review, but from the snippets I have read across the blogosphere...I'm going to be looking this up at my local bookstore.  The thoughts and inspirations behind the weekly devotions are sure to help you in your own spiritual journey and I am glad to be able to pass the word along!


I didn't receive the book so no disclosure is required...but I do think this is another great One Year Devotional from Tyndale!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Reclaiming Lily {blog tour and review}

Title: Reclaiming Lily
Author:  Patti Lacy
Publisher:  Bethany House
Available:  Now
Source:  LitFuse Blog Tour (pub)
To Buy:  Amazon

About the Book:
A storm the size of Texas brews when Gloria Powell and Kai Chang meet in a Ft. Worth hotel. They have come to discuss the future of Lily, the daughter Gloria adopted from China and the sister Kai hopes to reclaim. Kai is a doctor who had to give up her little sister during the Cultural Revolution and has since discovered that an inherited genetic defect may be waiting to fatally strike Lily. Gloria's relationship with her daughter is tattered and strained, and the arrival of Kai, despite the woman's apparent good intentions, makes Gloria fearful. Gloria longs to restore her relationship with Lily, but in the wake of this potentially devastating diagnosis, is Kai an answer to prayer--or will her arrival force Gloria to sacrifice more than she ever imagined?

My Take:
Patti Lacy once again takes an amazing hard subject to talk about and not only talks about it, but brings it to life in a story that will bring tears to your eyes.  I met Patti Lacy when she was on tour with The Rhythm of Secrets and she is as full of energy as her books!  The journey to China for many Americans is a lesson in patience and trial and joys and sadness and this aspect of a mother and daughter and biological families is one I haven't seen addressed before.   The view from two main characters was easier to follow that I thought it would be..and I can only say I'd love to see it more from Lily/Joy point of view.  This is a book that will most definitely make you take some time to think about things because she has a lot of Christian views on various scenes throughout the book.  If you are looking for a deeper read in this fall season I'd recommend you pick up this book!
Click here to read some other reviews!

About the Author:
 Patti Lacy graduated from Baylor University with a BS in education and completed master's-level courses in English at Indiana State University. She taught at Heartland Community College until May 2006, when she resigned to pursue her passion of writing. The author of three previous novels, Patti is the mother of two grown children and lives with her husband in Normal, Illinois. For more about Patti and her other books, visit her website at

Win a KindleTouch

Enter 10/5-10/19. Winner announced at Patti's Facebook Party on 10/20!

Blog Post:
Title: Win a KindleTouch from Patti Lacy!

Patti Lacy is celebrating the release of her latest book, Reclaiming Lily,  with a KindleTouch Giveaway, blog tour and FB Book Chat Party!

Follow the blog tour and read the reviews!

Patti and her publisher, Bethany House, are giving away a Reclaiming Lily prize package worth over $150 to one lucky winner!!!!

Enter the Reclaiming Lily Giveaway and you could win:

  • A brand new just released KindleTouch with Wi-Fi
  • $25 gift cetificate to
But, wait there’s more!

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. Giveaway ends on 10/19! Patti will be announcing the winner of the Reclaiming Lily Giveaway at her Party on Facebook October 20th! She’ll be hosting a book club chat of Reclaiming Lily (it's okay if you haven't read it - you could win a copy!) and giving away other fun prizes! (signed copies of her books and gift certificates to, Starbucks, & iTunes!). Don’t miss the fun at Patti’s FB Author Page on 10/20/11 at 5pm PST ( 6 pm MST, 7 pm CST, & 8 pm EST)! RSVP today!

Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter

I received this book in exchange of a fair review.  No other compensation was given and I was not required to provide a favorable review.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

In My Mailbox {11}

In my mailbox is a meme sponsered by The Story Siren and we share what we got in our mailboxes or electornically to whet your appetite for books!

For Review:

Something Witchy this Way Comes by Veroncia Blade
                               The Shattered Vine by Laura Anne Gilman

From the Library

That's it for me..  What did YOU get?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Along Wooded Paths {review}

Title:  Along Wooded Paths
Author:   Tricia Goyer
Publisher:  BHPublishing Group
Available:  Now
Source:  LitFuse BlogTour

About the Book:
All she wanted was a simple Amish life . . . But now Marianna Sommer finds herself depending on Englisch neighbors. Although proud of living apart from the world, she and her newly relocated Amish family have discovered that life in the remote mountains of Montana requires working together. As Marianna begins helping those different from herself—and receiving their help—her heart contemplates two directions. She’s torn between the Amish man from Indiana whom she has long planned on marrying and the friendly Englischer who models a closer walk with God than she’s ever seen before. Who should have young Marianna’s heart? What is God asking her to sacrifice? Her traditions? Her community? The answer is found along the wooded paths. Find out about book 1, Beside Still Waters, here:

Read an excerpt

or watch the trailer....

My Take:
Just a note.  I have not read the first book in this series and I don't think it distracted me from reading this installment at all!  I loved the idea of taking the Amish story into a different setting from what most readers of Amish books are used to.  Not too mention the fact that Ms. Goyer really made the hills come alive.  I also liked seeing a more sensitive male Amish love interest. I guess what drew me into this book was the fact that the Amish characters were made believable and not above the rest of us.  I also appreciated the deeper understanding that was woven in the story of the Amish faith and outsiders views.  Made the book very thought provoking.  The writing style really made the book come alive for me and I can't wait to see more from Tricia Goyer and that includes the third book in this series! 

About the author:
Tricia Goyer is the author of thirty books including Songbird Under a German Moon, The Swiss Courier, and the mommy memoir, Blue Like Play Dough. She won Historical Novel of the Year in 2005 and 2006 from ACFW, and was honored with the Writer of the Year award from Mt. Hermon Writer's Conference in 2003. Tricia's book Life Interrupted was a finalist for the Gold Medallion in 2005. In addition to her novels, Tricia writes non-fiction books and magazine articles for publications like MomSense and Thriving Family. Tricia is a regular speaker at conventions and conferences, and has been a workshop presenter at the MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) International Conventions. She and her family make their home in Little Rock, Arkansas where they are part of the ministry of FamilyLife. For more about Tricia and her other books visit

Buy the book

and come to the party!

Along Wooded Paths Party

I was given a copy of the book from LitFuse and publisher to provide an honest review!  No other compensation was given!

Monday, October 3, 2011

In My Mailbox {10}

A weekly meme created by The Story Siren so we can pass on what we got and get a preview of what to expect! 

I got some great books this week!

For review:

The Star-Crossed Saga by Braxton A. Cosby (Bill Cosby's nephew)
Ghost Files by Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson
(The cover is actually not the above generic red...has the stars face on front)
The Lens and the Looker and The Bronze and the Brimstone by
Lory Kaufman (first two in History Camp series)
Little Red Riding Hood into the Forest Again by Shaunda Kennedy Wenger

One E-read

Co-Exist by Julia Crane
(guest post on Paper Mustang)

And the Best Surprise of them All!!!

This is one of my top 10 books that I've read in 2011!  Actually right now it's tied with only one other book for my favorite top book.  I originally read this way back in July on vacation and fell in love with the writing style, the story line, etc etc.  I had originally read it on netgalley  and told Jenny how much I loved the book and we began corresponding and she had Barbour send to me not one BUT two copies of Southern Fried Sushi so I can have a giveaway!  So come back tomorrow for a new giveaway!  Even if you don't win...go find this releases tomorrow...and it's well worth the read!  THANK YOU JENNIFER!

That's it for my mailbox..thank you for visiting...and if you leave your IMM address I'll come visit you too!