Friday, April 25, 2008

Winter Haven by Athol Dickson

Hello Everyone!

At first I wasn't sure about this book. The opening didn't really catch me, I got a bit lost even at the front of it. A few pages later it latched on and I was hooked! LOL! Interestingly enough, there is a Winter Haven in Florida, but the setting is this book is far better than Florida. This book starts out with a murder, or at least a missing person, once you get into it just a bit. Vera's brother, who is 4 years old than herself, has been missing for 13 years. His body has washed ashore, so she has to go ID the body. It isn't as simple as oh, a person drowned, or anything like that. You see, Vera's brother is (or was?) autistic! (Ah, now we get to something I know some about!) Better yet, he is a Savant! A Savant who has the ENTIRE Bible memorized. What a gift!

However, as in my life nothing is as simple as it might seem on the surface. Vera is throw for a huge loop! Her brother's body has NOT AGED! To make it worse for her, Vera is seeing thing and she isn't sure if she is having visions, or just loosing her mind, or if God really just wrote her off and punished her! Vera has had so many tragic things happen to her in her life. Even her boss uses her! Can Vera figure out what happened to her brother? Can she cope with what she is seeing? Is it real, or is what she is seeing her finally loosing her mind from it all, and last but not least at all, what does Evan Frost have to do with this? He is into Viking, and so was her brother Siggy. Will Frost's spooky mansion be the healing, or the death of Vera?

I would say this book was as good as the movie "Gothica", and has a nice gothic feel to a good deal of it. I grew up on Nancy Drew and other mystery books, and I LOVE a good mystery! This book is a very good one!!!

Carol :)

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Winter Haven
(Bethany House April 1, 2008)
Athol Dickson
Athol Dickson's university-level training in painting, sculpture, and architecture was followed by a long career as an architect then his decision several years ago to devote full time to writing.Athol Dickson’s writing has been favorably compared to the work of Octavia Butler(Publisher’s Weekly), Daphne du Maurier (Cindy Crosby, and FlanneryO’Connor (The New York Times).His They Shall See God was a Christy Award finalist and his River Rising was a Christy Award winner, selected as one of the Booklist Top Ten Christian Novels of 2006 and a finalist for Christianity Today's Best Novel of 2006.He and his wife, Sue, live in Southern California. Visit for more information.
Boys who never age, giants lost in time, mist that never rises, questions never asked...on the most remote of islands off the coast of Maine, history haunts the present and Vera Gamble wrestles with a past that will not yield. Will she find refuge there, or will her ghosts prevail on...Winter Haven Eleven years ago, Vera Gamble's brother left their house never to be seen again. Until the day Vera gets a phone call that his body has been found...washed ashore in the tiny island town of Winter Haven, Maine. His only surviving kin, Vera travels north to claim the body...and finds herself tumbling into a tangled mystery. Her brother hasn't aged a day since last she saw him.Determined to uncover what happened in those lost years, Vera soon discovers there are other secrets lurking in this isolated town. But Winter Haven's murky past now seems bound to come to light as one woman seeks the undeniable and flooding light of truth.
The book link is:

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Begotton by Lisa T. Bergrer :Book 1 of The Gifted Series

Hello Readers!

POWERFUL! That is the first word that I can use to describe this book! Here is a book that is well written, and could compare to The Davinci Code in all the good ways, and none of the ones that upset!!! It also reminded me of the thrill the first Star Wars movie caused, this is definatly an epic!!! I thoroughly enjoyed the way that the characters met and meshed. It was wonderful to read and follow along. I felt like Bormeo, that I had a view of the whole thing from a wonderful perspective as it occurred. I loved the way that Lisa T. Bergren kept this book true to the Bible, but yet as real as anything I have lived in my life. :D So many people have gifts they don't use and talents that they hide away when God meant for us to use them for His kingdom and His glory. The imagery in this book was right on target, and it doesn't hurt that this is the kind of reading that is one of my most favorites! I really do hope to read the next book in this series, this one was just excellent!

Carol :)

Featured book, The Begotten

Featured author, Lisa T. Bergren Web site -

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Friday, April 18, 2008

My Soul To Keep By Melanie Wells

Hey Everyone!
What a book!!! Where have you been hiding Melanie Wells? WOW! Where is book 1 and 2, because I want to read them also. I did feel a wee bit lost that I don't know more about Peter Terry from the first 2 books, but at the same time, I was not so lost that I couldn't follow along. ;) I am really happy to have been able to read a book that see somethings like I see them. I know I said it before, but once again, this book would be a *wonderful* movie! :D It is gripping, it is well written, it is well paced, and I can't wait to read more of Melanie Wells's work! I want to add her to my new favorite authors list!
Carol :)
This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
My Soul To Keep
(Multnomah Books - February 5, 2008)
Melanie Wells
A native of the Texas panhandle and the child of musicians, Melanie Wells attended Southern Methodist University on a music scholarship (she's a fiddle player), and later completed graduate degrees in counseling psychology and Biblical studies at Our Lady of the Lake University and Dallas Theological Seminary. She has taught at the graduate level at both OLLU and DTS, and has been in private practice as a counselor since 1992. She is the founder and director of LifeWorks counseling associates in Dallas, Texas, a collaborative community of creative therapists. When the Day of Evil Comes is her first published work of fiction, and the first of a three-book series. The second work, The Soul Hunter was released in May, 2006. Melanie lives and writes in Dallas.
As nasty as I knew Peter Terry to be, I never expected him to start kidnapping kids. Much less a sweet, funny little boy with nothing to protect him but a few knock-kneed women, two rabbits and a staple gun…It’s psychology professor Dylan Foster’s favorite day of the academic year…graduation day. And her little friend Christine Zocci’s sixth birthday. But the joyful summer afternoon goes south when a little boy is snatched from a neighborhood park, setting off a chain of events that seen to lead nowhere.The police are baffled, but Christine’s eerie connection with the kidnapped child sends Dylan on a chilling investigation of her own. Is the pasty, elusive stranger Peter Terry to blame? Exploding light bulbs, the deadly buzz of a Texas rattlesnake, and the vivid, disturbing dreams of a little girl are just pieces of a long trail of tantalizing clues leading Dylan in her dogged search for the truth.

“Like water rising to a boil, My soul To Keep’s suspense sneaks up on you…before you know it, you’re in the thick if a frightening drama…Superbly crafted.”---ROBERT LIPARULO, author of Deadfall, Germ, and Comes A Horseman

“Written with passion, a good dose of humor and, dare I say it, soul, this novel reminds us that we all, with grace and good fortune, bumble our way toward salvation.”---K. L. COOK, author of Late Call and The Girl From Charmelle
The book link is:

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Trouble The Water by Nicole Seitz

Greetings my readers!

I suppose books that are about sisters will always make me twinge a wee bit that I don't have one. I do have a much beloved brother though, so thankfully I am not devoid of a close sibling relationship. I enjoyed the style of this book, and the accents that I can hear in my mind as I read. The "accents" were a joy to read. I am Southern born and raised, so a book with Southern accents and feel to it feels like "home" to me.
In this book there is an illness that so many, even my own Mother have dealt with. A word that strikes fear in the hearts of most people, cancer. While most of us who are close to Christ know that cancer is a word that is under the name of Jesus, because his name is above *all* names, it doesn't make it an easy thing to have someone you know and love have to fight off such a thing. I can tell you from personal experience with more than once person that cancer changes a person. Sometimes that change is temporary, sometimes it is forever. I am not going to tell you who, but I will tell you that someone in this book had cancer and that you need to read this book to find out who, and what effects it had. This is not a depressing book, but a realistic and healing book and that is another reason I can say that it is a good book to read!
Carol :)

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Trouble the Water
Thomas Nelson (March 11, 2008)
Nicole Seitz


Nicole Seitz is a South Carolina Lowcountry native and the author of The Spirit of Sweetgrass as well as a freelance writer/illustrator who has published in numerous low country magazines. A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's School of Journalism, she also has a bachelor's degree in illustration from Savannah College of Art & Design. Nicole shows her paintings in the Charleston, South Carolina area, where she owns a web design firm and lives with her husband and two small children. Nicole is also an avid blogger, you can leave her a comment on her blog. Seitz's writing style recalls that of Southern authors like Kaye Gibbons, Anne Rivers Siddons, and Sue Monk Kidd, and this new novel, which the publisher compares to Kidd's The Secret Life of Bees, surely joins the ranks of strong fiction that highlights the complicated relationships between women. Highly recommended, especially for Southern libraries.

In the South Carolina Sea Islands lush setting, Nicole Seitz's second novel Trouble the Water is a poignant novel about two middle-aged sisters' journey to self-discovery. One is seeking to recreate her life yet again and learns to truly live from a group of Gullah nannies she meets on the island. The other thinks she's got it all together until her sister's imminent death from cancer causes her to re-examine her own life and seek the healing and rebirth her troubled sister managed to find on St. Anne's Island.Strong female protagonists are forced to deal with suicide, wife abuse, cancer, and grief in a realistic way that will ring true for anyone who has ever suffered great loss.

"This is another thing I know for a fact: a woman can't be an island, not really. No, it's the touching we do in other people's lives that matters when all is said and done. The silly things we do for ourselves--shiny new cars and jobs and money--they don't mean a hill of beans. Honor taught me that. My soul sisters on this island taught me that. And this is the story of true sisterhood. It's the story of Honor, come and gone, and how one flawed woman worked miracles in this mixed-up world."

"...a special sisterhood of island women whose wisdom and courage linger in the mind long after the book is closed."-NEW YORK TIMES best-selling author SUSAN WIGGS

The book link is:

Amber Morn by Brandylin Collins

"Seatbelt Suspense" is right! This is a fast moving, action packed book. So many movies and so many books have hostages. Most of them do not have Christian hostages. It was a part of this book that I really do like. I know that just from reading or watching TV that the thought has crossed my mind of what I would do if I wound up in such a situation. I pray that it never happens to me or anyone I know. It makes for wonderful reading or viewing, but a horrible reality. I know, or have known a lot of people so far in my life. Some of them have had family or close friends arrested for crimes they committed, and so those people are serving jail time. It has a profound effect on every member of the family when this happens, and it can be quite a ripple effect. This book digs pretty deeply in this issue, and how the actions of one person, or just a few people can cause a ripple effect that is life changing. I would like to read more of Brandilyn Collin's books, I was quite taken by her work! I am suprised I hadn't heard of her before, and I am happy to have been introduced to her work! :D And as her tag line says, "Don't forget to breathe"!
Carol :)

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Amber Morn
(Zondervan Publishing Company - April 2008)
Brandilyn Collins
Brandilyn Collins is a best-selling novelist known for her trademark Seatbelt Suspense™. These harrowing crime thrillers have earned her the tagline “Don’t forget to b r e a t h e …®”
Brandilyn writes for Zondervan, the Christian division of HarperCollins Publishers, and is currently at work on her 19th book. Her first, A Question of Innocence, was a true crime published by Avon in 1995. Its promotion landed her on local and national TV and radio, including the Phil Donahue and Leeza talk shows. She’s also known for her distinctive book on fiction-writing techniques, Getting Into Character: Seven Secrets a Novelist Can Learn From Actors (John Wiley & Sons), and often teaches at writers conferences. Brandilyn blogs at Forensics and Faith. Visit her Website to read the first chapters of all her books.
The whole thing couldn’t have taken more than sixty seconds.Bailey hung on to the counter, dazed. If she let go, she’d collapse—and the twitching fingers of the gunman would pull the trigger. The rest of her group huddled in frozen shock.Dear God, help us! Tell me this is a dream . . .The shooter’s teeth clenched. “ Anybody who moves is dead.”On a beautiful Saturday morning the nationally read “Scenes and Beans” bloggers gather at Java Joint for a special celebration. Chaos erupts when three gunmen burst in and take them all hostage. One person is shot and dumped outside.Police Chief Vince Edwards must negotiate with the desperate trio. The gunmen insist on communicating through the “comments” section of the blog—so all the world can hear their story. What they demand, Vince can’t possibly provide. But if he doesn’t, over a dozen beloved Kanner Lake citizens will die...Amber Morn is the climactic finale to Collins’ widely read Kanner Lake series. All first three titles in the series, Violet Dawn, Coral Moon, and Crimson Eve, were bestsellers. Library Journal placed Crimson Eve on its Best Books of 2007 list, and hailed it the “Best Christian suspense of 2007.”
A few early reviews of Amber Morn:
“… essential reading … a harrowing hostage drama.” – Library Journal

“… heart-pounding … breakneck pace … satisfying and meaningful ending.” – RT Bookreviews

“This cataclysmic ending left me breathless … Kanner Lake is the Best Suspense Series of 2007/2008.” –

“Collins has saved the best for a last .. a powerful ensemble performance.” --

“… a staccato tempo … Sometimes you just have to close the book in order to come up for air.” – Dale Lewis

“…a masterpiece of page-turning suspense with a cast of dozens.” – Peg Phifer
The book link is:

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

When Zeffie Got A Clue By Peggy Darty

What a sweet book! This was an enjoybable read like a good movie! It definaly made me want to read more "Cozy Mysteries", and what a good discription of the book...a cozy mystery.
I was thrilled that Chrissy loved animals, and wound up with one of my personal favorities. (Well, I have to admit that I have more than one favorite critter breed! LOL!)

This story was a relaxing read, that was still stimulating at the same time. Zeffie was adorable, and her story well written. It reminded me in many ways of Christian Nancy Drew mystery for adults! I throughly enjoyed it!

Carol :)
This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
When Zeffie Got a Clue
WaterBrook Press (March 18, 2008)
Peggy Darty
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Peggy Darty is the award-winning author of twenty-seven books, including two other cozy mysteries set in Summer Breeze, Florida: When the Sandpiper Calls and When Bobbie Sang the Blues. She has worked in film, researched for CBS, and led writing workshops around the country. Darty and her husband call Alabama home but spend a great deal of time in Colorado, Montana, and on Florida’s Emerald Coast.
It’s an ordinary afternoon in Summer Breeze, Florida, when a young, wide-eyed girl steps into I Saw It First, the trash-to-treasure shop Christy Castleman and her Aunt Bobbie have opened. Clutching a jewelry box, Zeffie Adams tells Christy she needs money to pay her grandmother’s medical bills, prompting Christy to offer this curious visitor more than the jewelry box is worth–or so she thinks. But complicated questions form when Christy rips out the box’s lining and uncovers a clue to a cold case murder mystery from eight years ago. Despite warnings from her family and handsome boyfriend Dan Brockman, Christy decides to do a little detective work of her own. After all, the infamous murder happened close to her grandmother’s farm. How risky could it be to take the jewelry box back to the Strickland plantation and ask around about it?Soon Christy finds there is more to the small box than someone wants her to know. A jewelry theft. A mansion murder. Dangerous family secrets buried in history. Can Christy convince others to let go of the past before it’s too late?
The book link is: