Thursday, January 29, 2015

Sketch!: The Non-Artist's Guide to Inspiration, Technique, and Drawing Daily Life by France Belleville-Van Stone

Book Description:  An inspirational manual for integrating sketching into daily life for artists and non-artists alike. 

     Urban sketching--the process of sketching on the go as a regular practice--is a hot trend in the drawing world. In this aspirational guide, French artist France Belleville-Van Stone offers motivation to move beyond the comfort zone, as well as instruction on turning rough sketches into finished work. By sharing her own creative process, which includes sketching by hand and digitally, Belleville-Van Stone emboldens readers to craft a method of their own and devote more time to art, even if it's just 10 minutes a day. Sketch will inspire artists both established and aspiring to rethink their daily practice, sketch for the pure joy of it, and document their lives and the world around them.



My Thoughts:  I've always been interested in sketching or drawing; however, I can't seem to "get it."  I'm a crafty person and can decorate and place colors together but this sketching/drawing "thing" just never came to me.  

Well, this year  I am determined to learn but don't have the time to go to a class so when I saw this book Sketch!: The Non-Artist's Guide to Inspiration, Technique, and Drawing Daily Life by France Belleville-Van Stone I knew this was my chance!

Also, the title caught my attention:  The Non-Artist's Guide to Inspiration, Technique, and Drawing Daily Life...well, that's me...a non-artist.
This book does delve into the art/drawing instruction (and there are some great pointers/instructions).  The book is more about (don't laugh) making mistakes.  Yes, getting out paper and pencil/pen and sketching!  Make mistakes!  Go back and redo!  Love it!  Kind.of.like.life!  Make mistakes and then do better!  Learn, learn, learn!
I love this quote from the book, “If talent exists, my definition of it is this: it is the capacity to spend innumerable hours doing something and believe that somehow it matters. And perhaps if somehow God had a hand in it, it was in planting that tenacity in us.”
And yes, I've made some progress...I think I'll keep referencing this book and keep Sketching!

*This book was provided for review by Waterbrook/Multonmah*

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Watson-Guptill (November 4, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385346093
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385346092
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.5 x 9 inches

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

  • All Recipes has a wonderful, quite tasty Hobo Stew that's great for these January days!

    Ingredients 

    • 1 tablespoon of oil
    • 1 cup of chopped onion
    • 1/2 cup of chopped mixed sweet and hot peppers
    • 1/2 cup of celery
    • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
    • 1-1/2 pounds of ground beef
    • 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour
    • 1-1/2 cups of beef stock or broth
    • 3 (11.5 ounce) cans of original or spicy V-8, or tomato juice
    • 1 (14.5 ounce) can of diced tomatoes
    • 2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
    • 2 cups of fresh diced carrots (about 2 large)
    • 2 cups of corn
    • 2 cups of cut green beans
    • Dash of Worcestershire sauce
    • Couple dashes of hot sauce
    • 1/4 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning, optional
    • 1 teaspoon of kosher salt, or to taste
    • 1/4 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper, or to taste

  • Instructions:

    In the bottom of a Dutch oven or other heavy pot, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the onion, peppers and celery; cook and stir until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and ground beef, cook and stir until meat is browned and cooked through. Drain off excess fat. Sprinkle meat with flour; cook and stir for 3 minutes. Add the beef stock, V-8 juice and diced tomatoes. Stir in the potatoes, carrots, corn and green beans. Add Worcestershire, hot sauce and seasonings to taste. Stir, cover and simmer over medium to medium low (low bubble) for 1-1/2 to 2 hours, or until veggies are tender, stirring occasionally. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

    Hobo stew can be served as is, or spooned over rice or mashed potatoes. Serve with hot cornbread, biscuits or rolls.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

A Cry from the Dust (A Gwen Marcey Novel, book 1) by Carrie Stuart Parks

Book Description:  In the shadow of the Mormon church, a 19th-century conspiracy is about to be shattered by a 21st-century forensic artist. 

In 1857, a wagon train in Utah was assaulted by a group of militant Mormons calling themselves the Avenging Angels. One hundred and forty people were murdered, including unarmed men, women, and children. The Mountain Meadows Massacre remains controversial to this day--but the truth may be written on the skulls of the victims. 

When renowned forensic artist Gwen Marcey is recruited to reconstruct the faces of recently unearthed victims at Mountain Meadows, she isn't expecting more than an interesting gig . . . and a break from her own hectic life. 

But when Gwen stumbles on the ritualized murder of a young college student, her work on the massacre takes on a terrifying new aspect, and research quickly becomes a race against modern-day fundamentalist terror. 
As evidence of a cover-up mounts--a cover-up spanning the entire history of the Mormon church--Gwen finds herself in the crosshairs of a secret society bent on fulfilling prophecy and revenging old wrongs. 
Can a forensic artist reconstruct two centuries of suppressed history . . . before it repeats itself? 
In A Cry from the Dust, Carrie Stuart Parks utilizes her own background as a celebrated, FBI-trained forensic artist to blend fact and fiction into a stunning mystery.

My Thoughts:  Oh!Wow!  This is an incredible read!!  
I was offered this book twice and declined to read it twice.  I'll be honest the cover of the book looks odd to me and then I took time to read the description and it clicked!  That's a picture of a death mask.  
Gwen Marcey has had one too many disappointments come her way and then her co-worker is murdered, her work almost obliterated...her sanity seems like a millisecond from insanity!  Poor Gwen.
Gwen is a forensic artist (what a cool job!).  She is recruited to unearth massacre victims at Mountain Meadows.  This is where it gets interesting!  
The massacre concerned the Mormon church.  Wow!  So much history/facts about the Mormons.  
The suspense in this read is off the charts!  
This is one incredible WOW read!  And I'm so glad I decided to read this debut book by Carrie!  History and fiction at its best!

*This book was provided for review by BookLook*

  • Series: A Gwen Marcey Novel (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (August 12, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401690432
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401690434

Monday, January 26, 2015

COTT {Clash of the Titles) The Most Exciting December 2014 Releases


January 2015 Clash of the Titles

It's a New Year featuring some of the most romantic and intriguing releases from last month. Holiday, Western, Pirates!



She’s Mine: A Mystique of Naultag novel 
Tammy Doherty


Caitlin Harrington has a new job and a new life away from her menacing ex-boyfriend, Adam. Issues with her parents, losing her previous job and the death of her beloved grandmother leave her wondering if God has abandoned her. Two things she is sure of: she’s a lousy judge of character and men just can’t be trusted.


Plundered Christmas 
Susan Lyttek


When compelled to spend Christmas on the private island of her father’s intended bride, Jeanine must cope with pirate legends, unexpected storms, and murder. Will she and her family discover the truth about Anne Bonny’s connection to the Banet family before someone else winds up dead?



Christmas Greetings
Pat Simmons


Saige Carter loves everything about Christmas: the shopping, the food, the lights, and of course, Christmas wouldn’t be complete without family and friends to share in the traditions they’ve created together Daniel Washington is no Scrooge, but he’d rather skip the holidays altogether than spend them with his estranged family. Once God reveals to them His purpose for their lives, they will have a reason to rejoice. 



Deep Freeze Christmas
Marian Merritt


Louisiana Chef Leona Buquet agrees to cook at a Colorado mountain lodge during the Christmas holiday. When she meets the son of a movie producer, she is taken by his striking good looks and warm personality. Trouble is, with glamorous actresses clamoring for his attention, why would he even notice Leona?


The Snowbound Bride
Davalynn Spencer


Can Arabella Taube find her way out of the physical and emotional storm of a Colorado winter before the handsome horseman who rescued her also steals her heart? 

(Note: books made available the weekend of December 1 are included)

Thursday, January 22, 2015

The 20/20 Diet: Turn Your Weight Loss Vision Into Reality by Phil McGraw (Author)

Book Description:  In The 20/20 Diet, Dr. Phil McGraw identifies seven reasons other diets fail people over and over again: hunger, cravings, feeling of restriction, impracticality and expense, boredom, temptations, and disappointing results or plateaus. Then, he addresses each of these roadblocks by applying the latest research and theories that have emerged since his last best seller on the same topic, The Ultimate Weight Solution. Dr. Phil and his team have created a plan that you can start following right now and continue working for the rest of your life. In this diet, readers will start by eating only 20 key ingredients, called the “20/20 Foods,” which theories indicate may help enhance your body’s thermogenesis and help you feel full. But that's just the beginning. This book explains why you haven't been able to lose the weight before, and empowers you with cognitive, behavioral, environmental, social and nutritional tools so you can finally reach your goal, and learn lifelong healthy habits to maintain those results.

My Thoughts:  One day after school I "just happened" to turn the TV on and Dr. Phil was talking about this book (new this year) on the Doctor's Show.
I listened to Dr. Phil because I know that in the past he had a huge weight problem (pun intended).  He has struggled with his weight so I was interested in reading his book. 
I like the approach.  It's nothing new, really.  But, yet, Dr. Phil simplifies the "hard" part.
There are three phases: 
These 3 phases are two 5 day and then followed up by a 20 day.
**Phase 1 (days 1-5): "Boost" - You eat every 4 hours, increasing metabolism, with basic foods.
**Phase 2 (days 6-10): "Sustain" - Somewhat the same as 1 but now adding in more diversity of foods.
**Phase 3 (days 11-30): "Attain" - Somewhat the same as 2 but by now all foods have been added in.

It's a doable "diet".... it needs to become a way of life.  Eating to maintain energy, never going hungry.  Hungry becomes the problem that leads to overeating and weight gain.  There are a lot of fish and veggie recipes, fruit added too. Eating a lot of vegetables is the key to weight loss.
A well thought out plan.
I'm trying it and doing well.  Down 7 pounds....

*This book was provided for review by NetGalley*
  • Hardcover: 338 pages
  • Publisher: Bird Street Books (January 6, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1939457319
  • ISBN-13: 978-1939457318

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Sister Eve, Private Eye (A Divine Private Detective Agency Mystery) by Lynne Hinton

Book Description:  Sister Eve knows God moves in mysterious ways. And Eve adores a good mystery. Especially a murder.
Two decades into her calling at a New Mexico monastery, Sister Evangeline Divine breaks her daily routine when a police officer appears, carrying a message from her father. Sister Eve is no stranger to the law, having grown up with a police captain turned private detective. She’s seen her fair share of crime—and knows a thing or two about solving mysteries.
But when Captain Jackson Divine needs her to return home and help him recover from surgery, Sister Eve finds herself taking on his latest case.
A Hollywood director has disappeared, and the sultry starlet he’s been running around with isn’t talking. When the missing man turns up dead, Captain Divine’s case escalates into a full-blown murder case, and Sister Eve’s crime-solving instincts kick in with an almost God-given grace.
Soon Sister Eve finds herself soul-searching every step of the way: How can she choose between the vocation in her heart and the job in her blood?

My Thoughts: I know a lot of people didn't care for this read but I found it interesting and quite good.  
Sister Eve (Evangeline Devine is her real name. . . oh!my!) is quite humorous to me.  She doesn't fit the nun mold nor does she try too.  She is who she is.
When a police officer shows up at the monastery with a message from Sister Eve's father...Captain Jack Divine (just love the play on names!)
Sister Eve goes home to help her dad as he recovers from surgery and she helps with his current case.  Sister Eve knows a thing or two about solving a crime/mystery!  After all, she grew up with a dad who is police captain.
The Hollywood director, Chaz Cheston, turns up dead and the starlet/mistress who has been running around with him isn't talking but Sister Eve is on the case!  Look out criminals!
As she goes about solving this case Sister Eve rethinks her own choice of life decisions.  Interesting!  
I'm hoping that there is more about Sister Eve and her life in the future.  I love a mystery solving nun (but I loved Father Dowling, too!).

*This book was provided for review by BookLook*

Series: A Divine Private Detective Agency Mystery (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (November 25, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401691455
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401691455

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

Another great soup recipe from Pinterest!
Ingredients:
12 ounces apple smoked bacon, chopped into small pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 onion, small dice
2 carrots, small dice
2 celery stalks, small dice
4 cloves garlic, pressed through garlic press
2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
• Pinch or two sea salt
½ teaspoon cracked black pepper
6 (15 ounce) cans small white beans (or navy beans), drained and rinsed
4 cups chicken stock, hot
2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Preparation:  Place a large Dutch oven, or heavy bottom pot, over medium-high heat; once the pot is hot, add in a small drizzle of olive oil, and the chopped bacon; crisp the bacon completely until nice and brown, then remove with a slotted spoon, drain it on some paper towel, and set it aside for a moment; reserve about 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat, and set that aside for a moment, as well; wipe out the pot, and return it to medium-high heat.
Next, add back into the pot the bacon fat, along with the olive oil and the butter, and allow them to melt together; once melted and hot, add in the diced onion, carrots and celery, and allow them to soften and saute for about 5 minutes; next, add in the garlic, and once it becomes aromatic, add in about 2/3 of the reserved, crisped bacon, as well as the Italian seasoning, the sea salt and the pepper, along with the white beans, and stir to combine; next, add in the hot chicken stock, stir, and allow the stew to gently simmer for about 40-45 minutes, partially covered with lid; about half way through the cooking process, mash the beans a little bit with the  back of your spoon, or with a potato masher, to break up the beans a little bit and release their natural starch to thicken the stew; after about 40 minutes, turn the heat off and finish the stew by adding in the chopped parsley, the lemon zest and the lemon juice; serve the stew with some nice, crusty bread to dip, and garnish with some of the remaining crisped bacon.
(Serves about 6)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

About Patricia Bradley { A former COTT winner}


Former Clash Contestant Patricia Bradley is in the spotlight today! A popular romantic suspense author from Mississippi, her latest book "A Promise to Protect" released this fall and garnered high praise from readers. It's the second book in her Logan Point series, with the third releasing next summer.





A Promise to Protect:
In a steamy small town riddled with broken promises, one woman’s secret could change everything.


Acting Sheriff Ben Logan hasn’t heard from Leigh Somerall in a very long time, but it doesn’t mean he can get her—or their whirlwind romance of ten years ago—out of his head. When she calls out of the blue, it is with a strange request to protect her brother, Tony. But all too soon, Ben is charged with a different task—protecting Leigh from the people after her brother. With Leigh doing everything in her power to avoid Ben, it’s no easy task. And the secret she is keeping just may change their lives forever.


The Christian Manifesto says this about A Promise to Protect:
“Patricia Bradley definitely has a knack for creating mysteries that are tough to get to the bottom of. A Promise to Protect proves once again that Patricia Bradley has a knack for writing intriguing, complex mysteries that are difficult to solve. Fans of her first novel won’t be disappointed, and hopefully this book will endear some new readers to her as well.”

JoJo Sutis on Goodreads says:Wow! Wow! Wow! Once again Patricia Bradley has written another hit! I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a copy of this one from the minute I finished the first Logan Point book. I was so excited to get to read more about Ben (a character from book 1). The interaction between the two main characters was awesome…I love when main characters have a past together. This is definitely an edge of your seat thriller, full of secrets and intrigue. I’m thrilled to have found a new fave suspense author…fans of Lynette Eason, Terri Blackstock, and Irene Hannon don’t miss Patricia Bradley!!!”

About Patricia:

Patricia Bradley lives in North Mississippi and is a former abstinence educator and co-author of RISE To Your Dreams, an abstinence curriculum. But her heart is tuned to suspense. Patricia’s romantic suspense books include the Logan Point series—Shadows of the Past and A Promise to Protect—and Matthew’s Choice a Heartwarming romance. Her workshops on writing include an online course with American Christian Fiction Writers and workshops at the Midsouth Christian Writer’s Conference in Collierville, TN. When she’s not writing, she likes to throw mud on a wheel and see what happens.

Coming in July--the third book in the Logan Point series features Livy Reynolds and Robyn Martin’s story:

It's been more than two years since homicide detective Livy Reynolds's cousin disappeared from Logan Point. Unlike most people in her hometown, Livy has never believed that Robyn left voluntarily. When Dallas private investigator Alex Jennings contacts Livy concerning a missing senator's daughter who was last seen in Logan Point, she notices eerie similarities between the two disappearances. But with self-doubt plaguing her and an almost instant dislike of Jennings, Livy is finding this investigation an uphill battle. With her future in law enforcement on the line, can she find a way to work with a man who is her polar opposite?


Monday, January 19, 2015

{Kregel Blog Tour} A Saintly Killing (A Faith Morgan Mystery, #3) by Martha Ockley

Book Description:  A local artist is found dead at her easel, and Faith discovers that several of her flock may be implicated


It is late July and preparations are underway for the one thousandth anniversary of the church at Little Worthy. As Vicar, Faith Morgan has planned a whole range of celebrations--a music festival, a photographic booklet of recent history, a planting of new trees in the graveyard and vicarage garden, bell ringing, and a visit from the bishop.



A new painting of the church has been commissioned from distinguished local artist Sal Hankley. Sal, who has recently returned from Australia, is not a universally popular choice. She is outspoken and opinionated, and she has made her share of enemies.


Before the painting can be completed, Sal is found dead at her easel on a hillock overlooking the church. A respectable member of the community--a member of the Parochial Church Council--is under suspicion. Faith, now trying to hold the church and the village together, once again finds herself teamed with her former boyfriend, Detective Inspector Ben Shorter, as they seek to discover the murderer.

My Thoughts:  I've had the pleasure of reading all three of the Faith Morgan Mysteries and out of all three I like this mystery the best.            Each mystery is a stand alone read but all three have one common factor...Faith Morgan, vicar of Little Worthy.  (Faith is a woman minister).
Innocently enough, Faith is once again caught up in a mystery.  This time the death of Sal, who was commissioned by Faith, to make a painting of the church for its 900th anniversary.  But this celebration soon turns deadly and now many of the church parishioners and townspeople are under suspicion.  
Sal was highly opinionated and quite outspoken (on every subject) but somehow Sal chose the wrong subject to speak about.  
Faith finds that her "old flame" Detective Inspector Ben Shorter is heading up the investigation.  
Faith and Ben are thrown together as they both investigate (on different levels) the murder of Sal.  
I found the romance between Faith and Ben humorous and clean.  Poor Ben!  He just won't won this one. {wink!}
This is a quaint and somewhat "British" (over the pond British).  
A grand read for mystery readers!

*This book was provided for review by Kregel Publications*



  • Series: Faith Morgan Mystery
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Lion Fiction; 1st New edition edition (November 27, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1782640916
  • ISBN-13: 978-1782640912

          (Book One)                                                                   (Book Two)
                                                     
          

Thursday, January 15, 2015

The Song by Chris Fabry (based on the motion picture screenplay by Richard L. Ramsey)

Book Description:  Jed King’s life has been shaped by the songs and mistakes of his famous father. He wants to sing his own song, but the words and melody are elusive. Haunted by the scars inflicted by his broken family, Jed’s dreams of a successful music career seem out of reach . . . until he meets Rose.
As romance quickly blooms, Jed pens a new song and suddenly finds himself catapulted into stardom. But with this life of fame comes temptation, the same temptation that lured his father so many years ago.
Set in the fertile mid-South, this quest for success leads Jed and Rose on a journey that will force them to deal with the pain of loss, failure, and the desire to be who God created them to be.
Lyrical and deeply honest, The Song asks the hard questions of love and forgiveness. When even the wisest of men are fools in love, can true love persevere?

My Thoughts:  Chris Fabry writes with such an unique flair.  The reader isn't quite sure what will happen as the story rolls along.  
The Song is taken from the biblical writings from the book of Song of Solomon and Lamentations...the experiences of King Solomon.
I found it interesting that the main character's name is Jed King (you know, like the King Solomon).
This is a powerful story!  Love, loss, tension, emotions running high...oh!my! What a story! 
Jed comes form a dysfunctional home/background but, yet, as in all of our lives God can make the ashes into something beautiful when we let Him take control of our lives.
The story of Jed and Rose (the vineyard owner's daughter) seems to be an honest story of fame and trying to keep a pure love in the entertainment world. 
This story really explores the relationships of people.   Sometimes there is a "price" for following our dreams.  And sometimes we don't understand the "sins" of our fathers until are faced with the same "sins."  An interesting and wonderful look at life!
A great read with a few tissue alerts along the way!  

*This book was provided for review by Tyndale*

  • Paperback: 440 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (December 18, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1496403339
  • ISBN-13: 978-1496403339

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

WOW {Warm Oven Wednesday}

This is another great recipe I found on Pinterest:

INGREDIENTS:


  1. 8 Chai Tea Bags
  2. 8 Cups of Water
  3. Milk (to taste)
  4. DIRECTIONS:
    1. Boil your water and add the tea bags.
    2. Let them seep for about 30 minutes.
    3. Remove the bags and let the tea cool before adding it to a pitcher.
    4. Let chill in the fridge overnight.
    5. Pour half a glass of the chai mix and top with your milk.
    6. Add ice, stir and enjoy!
    7. This makes one pitcher of chai tea mix. It will keep in the fridge for up to a week. When you are ready for a latte - simply add your milk and enjoy!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

COTT {Clash of the Titles} Introducing Caryl McAdoo's latest title, Hope Reborn!




Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to author Caryl McAdoo and her newest release Hope Reborn. (Look at that sassy expression, and that billowy feather in the heroine's hat. She's got to be up to something!)


{About Hope Reborn}


Dime novelist May Meriwether decides a Texas Ranger will make a great love interest for her new heroine and sets out to the Lone Star State with her companion Chester in tow; dreams of a family relegated to the recesses of her heart. But a widower resurrects a smidgen of hope. Only his superstitious beliefs stand in the way, and his love for his dead wife. Would there ever be room for her in his heart? Would he give up his God?
Give up his God? Yikes! This is going to be sticky!

{What are readers saying?}


Ms. McAdoo once again has gripped me from page one. (I read this book in almost one sitting. I quit reading around 2/3 one morning and resumed later in the day after I got caught up on sleep.) These Texas Romance/Christian Romantic Historical Western Adventures are certainly full of all of the aspects of each genre individually and meshed into a wonderful story that is very unique and unforgettable. - Rachelle WIlliams, a Mississippi reader

Sounds like some serious page-turning!

And now, let's meet Caryl!

{About the Caryl McAdoo}

With fourteen titles released by six publishers, Simon & Schuster author Caryl McAdoo is excited about her newest historical Christian Texas Romance series HOPE REBORN (1850/Jan. 9, 2015), book three after VOW UNBROKEN (1832/March 2014) and book two HEARTS STOLEN (1844/September, 2014). The novelist also edits, paints, and writes new songs. In 2008, she and her high school sweetheart-husband Ron moved from the DFW area—home for fifty-five years—to the woods of Red River County. Caryl counts four children and fourteen grandsugars life’s biggest blessings believing all good things come from God. Praying her story gives God glory, she hopes they books will also minister His love, mercy, and grace to all their readers. Caryl and Ron live in Clarksville, the county seat, in the far northeast corner of the Lone Star State.
If you want to know more about Caryl and her books, here are some of her cyber-haunts:

{Links}

 (All First Chapters are offered here)
(Get FREE books for subscribing!)


Be sure to come back and visit Clash of the Titles for our next literary sparring match!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Always on My Mind (Christiansen Family #4) by Susan May Warren

Book Description:  After a failed dig in Honduras, aspiring archaeologist Casper Christiansen heads home to Minnesota to face his unresolved feelings for Raina Beaumont, the woman of his dreams. But when he arrives unannounced on her doorstep, he receives the shock of a lifetime: Raina is pregnant with someone else’s baby.


Heartbroken, especially when he discovers the identity of the baby’s father, Casper tables his dreams and determines to be dependable for once, helping his older brother, Darek, prepare the family resort for its grand reopening. Casper longs to be the hero of at least one family story, but a never-ending Deep Haven winter and costly repairs threaten their efforts—and the future of the resort.


Worse, one of Casper’s new jobs constantly brings him into contact with Raina, whom he can’t seem to forget. A tentative friendship begins to heal fresh wounds, but can they possibly overcome past mistakes and current choices to discover a future together?

My Thoughts:  This is the fourth book in the Christiansen Family Series.  I've read the others in the Christiansen Family series and was so looking forward to this read.
And, as much as it pains me, I was disappointed in this story.  
Susan May Warren is one of my favorite authors but this story is like a soap opera.  
I understand that Susan is trying to bring the message of forgiveness and love but, honestly!, another man's baby!  And to top.it.off Casper is suppose to be kind and forgiving because of Raina's "mistake/abuse?" 
(this is where I had a 'little' problem).  I was mentally telling Casper to leave and go have a life...quit wasting his time on someone who doesn't seem to understand his love.  
Just because a christian is suppose to forgive it doesn't mean s/he has to be a doormat.
I was greatly! disappointed in this read!  And I didn't want to be!  

*This book was provided for review by the Tyndale for my honest opinion*
  • Series: Christiansen Family
  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (December 18, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1414378440
  • ISBN-13: 978-1414378442