Monday, December 19, 2011

I Love You More....Than Chocolate! by Melanie Milburn

This book was originally a song, and inside the back cover, you have a CD of Melanie singing the song. When Melanie would tuck her children into bed at night, she made sure they knew how much they were loved. She told them she loved them more than anything even chocolate! Her children knew she was a chocoholic, so they had no doubt, they knew they were loved! Every child wants to know they are loved, and this book conveys what parents want their children to know in a way that speaks clearly and impressively to the child's mind and heart.

My Thoughts:

Ok...when I saw this book being offered...I immediately thought of my chocolate-loving little 8 year old daughter, and just HAD to get it and see what it would be like. IT IS ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL! My girl has always loved the same book from the time she was tiny--this book has just replaced it...although it still ranks #2 :) I loved the lyrical stanzas even before I realized it had a CD in the back and was actually a song. Roo found it immediately and read it straight through....putting it to her own music before she had ended the book. She then proceeded to read it to everyone who would listen in the store we manage...and has taken it everywhere we have gone the past 3 days since we got it
. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the book....but love even more how much my daughter has fallen in love with it and is READING (all on her own) to everyone who will listen! The pictures are wonderful and eye catching. They are easy to look at over and over (which is a GOOD thing when your child wants to read it to you over and over!)

If you know of anyone who has children who enjoys chocolate--this is the PERFECT gift for them. Even my older boys enjoy hearing the story (& song) despite their 'advanced' years. It is a timeless message to any child of any age. Would make THE PERFECT gift for a new Mom...or an older one!

This book rates a 6/5 for us...which I have NEVER done. Be sure to find it and get it...add it to your library and those of your children, grandchildren, and friends!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Inspiring Devotionals for Pre-Teens!

This devotional inspires boys' hearts toward Godly characteristics such as integrity, honesty, and generosity. Boys 8 to 12 will find the truths relevant and the challenges compelling, engaging, and hands-on. And parents appreciate watching Christ-like traits emerge as each dare is undertaken.

My Thoughts:

Your boys NEED this devotional! All boys love a good dare...and this devotional is packed FULL of them! I spent the last few weeks going over this for Biblical truthfullness...and have found no errors. I have just started my 11 year old reading & studying it. He is enjoying it and starting to actually work on some of the dares--all on his own! It is a wonderful tool for those of you who want to encourage your boys to learn God's will for their lives!

I give this book a 5/5. I WILL be looking for another copy for my middle child to be able to go through!!!


Are you ready for more -- more excitement, more adventure, more fun? Yeah? Then take the dare! Dare to discover the secrets to a life that sparkles for God. You've got what it takes to make an impact on the world. This just-for-you devotional is filled with powerful wisdom on everything from godly friendship and serving others to getting along with your parents and worshipping God. It's advice for real life from the greatest BFF of all: your heavenly Father.

Each day you'll read a few verses of Scripture and discover some awesome truths. Then you'll be challenged to live it out with exciting dares that can change your life and fun quizzes to keep it all real. It's your time to shine as a girl who knows what it means to live a fierce and fearless life of faith.

So....will YOU take the dare???

My thoughts:

Even though this study is designed for 9-12 year old girls. I had fun going through it! I didn't take ALL the dares...some WERE a bit juvenile for a xxx year old like me! However, there were many that we as adults should be taking as well. I found this devotional to be cleaver and witty and thoroughly Scripture based. I am putting it up for my daughter for her next birthday! I can't wait to see how she will grow and change as she learns more from God's Word through this study. Please give your daughter a Blessing and get her this book!
I will give this one a 5/5 as well.

I want to thank B & B Media Group, Inc. for providing both of these devotionals. I was given both books in exchange for an honest opinion and the above opinions are 100% mine.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Great Study Devotionals

Twenty minutes a day to discover the abundance of God?s riches In Live Abundantly, Bible teachers Lenya Heitzig and Penny Pierce Rose challenge you to dig deep into the book of Ephesians to find the spiritual treasure God has for you. Covering topics such as living in God's will and receiving peace no matter the circumstances, the book of Ephesians reveals the magnitude of every Christian's inheritance, a gift exceedingly abundantly above? what you could ever ask for. Unearth the greatest treasure of life in this rich study. Each day's lesson is structured in five parts: Lift up (prayer), Look at (God's Word), Learn about (new insights), Live out (application), Listen to (quotes from other believers). The Fresh Life series was created by women, for women?women who crave a profound experience of God's Word without an overwhelming commitment of time. With each lesson, you will come to a deeper understanding of the truths of the Bible and develop a deeper intimacy with God.

Twenty minutes a day to a deeper understanding of God's presence in your life He was saved from death on the Nile and raised as an Egyptian prince. He met his wife at a Midianite well, witnessed the birth of a nation as the Red Sea parted, and watched water gush from a rock with one touch of his rod. He died overlooking the Jordan River. In fact, Moses?s entire life can be viewed through the water that redirected him. In this engaging study, Bible teacher Lenya Heitzig encourages you to consider the watershed moments in your own spiritual journey. Each day's lesson is structured in five parts: Lift up (prayer), Look at (God's Word) , Learn about (new insights), Live out (application), Listen to (quotes from other believers) The Fresh Life series was created by women, for women who crave a profound experience of God's Word without an overwhelming commitment of time. With each lesson, you will come to a deeper understanding of the truths of the Bible and develop a deeper intimacy with God.

My Thoughts:

You NEED to get these studies and go through them!

I have spent the last several weeks engrossed in these two studies. They have helped me to grow and develop my relationship with God. I have been able to pinpoint problems in my life that needed addressed and take care of them with His help. Both of these studies are Bible-based--which is a MUST for me! They are filled with questions that make you dig deeper into the Word and find answers that apply to YOURSELF...not just anyone. If you are wanting to grow in the Lord...go out and find these Bible Studies! I give both of them a 5/5....with the one on Ephesians maybe a 5.5/5 :)

I want to thank the publisher for providing these books to review. I was given the books in return for an honest review and the above opinions are 100% mine.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Guest Author/Blogger Ashley Dawn

KC: Tell us a bit about YOU that our readers might not know.

Ashley: I am a working mother of two who absolutely loves what I do. Writing is my passion but my children are my world. I take them to work with me every day, and since I work with my husband, it is a big family event every day. Some days, I get absolutely nothing done at work because I’m too busy playing cars or rocking a baby, but it is well worth it to me.

KC: Tell us about your latest release.

Ashley: My newest book, Shadows of Pain, is the third in my Shadows Series and focuses on Kami Reynolds and Daniel Jenkins. Kami and Daniel have been in both of the previous books in the series and now are being targeted by a killer. The more they fight it, the closer he gets but also the closer they get. Theirs is a sweet love that is born at a dangerous time. We also keep up with the other Shadows characters along the way!

KC: What made you want to become a writer?

Ashley: I have always enjoyed reading and telling stories. It just seemed natural to put pen to paper and tell the stories in my mind. My first book was the result of a series of events, one of which was reading a predictable mystery book that made me wonder how I would make a book less predictable. I used my imagination and started my first book. My mother and a lot of my family encouraged me to finish and eventually publish my book.

KC: Do you write under a pen name?

Ashley: Yes I do. I write under the pen name Ashley Dawn. That is my first and middle name, I decided in the beginning to write under the name Ashley Dawn, because knew my last name would change at some point but I would always be Ashley Dawn. I absolutely love my middle name so it seemed like the perfect name to use.

KC: Authors love all of their characters. Is there a certain type of character that is easier to write than another?

Ashley: The stubborn women are the easiest to write! I mostly base my characters off my family and I have lots of stubborn women in my family who have those traits. Aurora from my first book was a snap to write. She has an attitude very much like my own and I loved writing her sassy dialogue. It seems that most of the women in my stories, from mothers to girlfriends to police, they all have the tough exterior and try to show the world they can handle anything on their own. It is a great joy to write those ladies!

KC: Do you read in the same genre that you write in?

Ashley: Absolutely. To me that is the best genre there is! I love to read Irene Hannon, Dee Henderson, Terri Blackstock, Lynette Eason and a whole long list. The mystery, suspense and romance mixed with the message of Christianity is a wonderful thing. I aspire to be more like these amazing authors as I write.

KC: Do you have any strange quirks or unusual habits when you are writing.

Ashley: Haha! I absolutely do. The biggest one is that I have to hand write every word of my book before I type a word. Each book has a specific color of legal pads and I have special pens to write the story. I still do editing and rewording after the book is typed up but in the beginning the whole thing is written on those pads with particular pens.

KC: Tell us about a typical day in your life as a writer.

Ashley: My typical day as a writer has to be a Saturday since I work a 9-5 job through the week but when I get the chance I get my pad and pen, corral my children and try to lose myself in the story. Most days it starts with getting the children to either sleep in or play contentedly as I write, I drink water and eat marshmallow crème and pretzels. I know its strange but it is good brain food! I get interrupted multiple times, do dishes, laundry and any other housework I can get to. The whirlwind day is the day I write the best!

KC: Where do your story ideas come from?

Ashley: A lot of my ideas come from dreams. Apparently my vivid imagination doesn’t shut off when I sleep and I get a lot of my best ideas in the middle of the night. Actually ‘seeing’ my book in my dreams makes it so much easier to write it down. It is a thrill to write about the people I ‘meet’ in my dreams! When I wake up, I can still see them and sometimes just daydream and write what happens 

KC: What made you decide to write a series?

Ashley: As I wrote my first book, I fell in love with the support characters almost as much as I did with Aurora and Jordan. Jordan’s family dynamic interested me so much that I had to explore it in depth and that lead to further interest in the characters. I decided each of them needed their own story. Not just Jordan’s family but also Aurora’s. Her family may not be what is thought of as a conventional family but they are definitely closer than a lot of families I know. It is just wonderful to explore all the characters in depth and to let them develop on their own through the whole series.

KC: What is your next project about?

Ashley: I am currently working on a couple different projects. I’m trying to finish a new book, not related to my series, and currently titled ‘Right to Remain?’. It is about a serial killer, attorney, nurse and a race to save a young girl’s life. The other project I’m trying to focus on is the 4th book in my Shadows Series, Shadows of Deception. This installment focuses on Tiffany Reiley and a new character to the series, Colorado Wiley. Tiffany is hired to discover exactly what is going on at Colorado’s ranch and maybe she will discover love along the way.

Thank you so much Kim for having me today!

KC: I'm very glad to have you today! Sounds like there are some interesting things brewing!!
Go and check out her new book...and the others, as well!

Pen Name: Ashley Dawn
Website: AuthorAshleyDawn
My Blog: Ashley's Bookshelf
Author of 'Shadows From The Past'
Author of 'Shadows of Suspicion'
Author of 'Shadows of Pain'

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Shadows of Pain by Ashley Dawn

Revenge is sweet….unless you are on the receiving end of it.

“Do you know of anyone who would want…you dead?”

Officer Daniel Jenkins was no stranger to the dangers his job posed but usually he knew who was trying to kill him. Being stalked was a completely different ball game, and he wasn’t sure there were any rules…

“…I need you.”

Terrified didn’t even begin to describe how Kami felt with the stalker targeting her. As an FBI agent you were trained to handle stressful situations, but being the victim put the whole process in a different light.

As the killer gets closer, so do Kami and Daniel, but will they live long enough to see their love bloom?

Only God can save them from this unknown killer…

My Thoughts:
HOLD IT! You NEED to get on-line and find this book! It is an EXCELLENT read!

Daniel is such a personable fellow! You can totally relate to him as he fumes and tries to justify what he's done/is doing. He is so easy to fall in love with as you see him hurt and recovering. Kami gives Daniel that extra push to help straighten out his thinking and help him. When she becomes a target as well, Daniel has to put his selfish thoughts aside to focus on helping to bring the perpetrator to justice. Neither Daniel or Kami make very good 'helpless victims'.

It was encouraging to see how Ashley Dawn wove Daniel's struggle with his faith and how he came to terms with God into the relationship he and Kami were developing. It seemed true and accurate to how many people would feel or act in today's society. Kami's support for her friend came through strong. It was fun to watch how their relationship bloomed from friendship to romance.

Ashley Dawn is one of my all-time favorite authors. She does a fantastic job of combining suspense in a family oriented setting with a great plot, and well defined characters. I enjoy reading the series and seeing how she pulls a few new characters into the mix along with giving us so much more information on characters that made an appearance in previous books. While each of the books easily stands on its own, it is so much fun to read them in a series and watch the characters grow and learn. I give her book a 5/5. You definitely need to get this book for your keeper shelf!

I want to thank Ashley Dawn for providing this book to review. I was given the book in return for an honest review and the above opinions are 100% mine.

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Unwanted Author: Daniel L. Carter An explosion shatters the night sky.... Smoke and flames erupt over the city of Chicago. FBI Agent Nick Catlin watches helplessly as their only lead straps on a glider and leaps off a high rooftop, soaring toward Lake Michigan. They've lost him, again. The crime scenes always fit the same pattern-five babies are among the casualties. Fourteen months later, though, in New York, no infant bodies are found. Nick's gut tells him the killer was somehow interrupted in his work and that he won't stop until he tracks down those children and finishes what he started. Oklahoma rancher Leigh Barrus is barely making ends meet when his estranged niece, Janet, shows up at his ranch with five babies in tow. The terrifying tale she tells him about genetic experiments is only the beginning of the shocking truths.... A gripping sci-fi thriller for all ages Book One in The Unwanted Trilogy

My Thoughts:
Ok, I know I have reviewed this book before....but I found my self reading it again the other day....and I simply could NOT put it down! Typically, once I've read a book before, I have no problem putting it down in favor of sleep. I sure don't have any problem skipping over parts and simply skimming it. In stead of that, I found myself losing a whole night's sleep in favor of rereading the book. I just couldn't find a part of it I wanted to skip over in order to speed up my reading, and I couldn't put it down to go and sleep without finishing it! It's such a nice, refreshing change to find a book that is so compelling and interesting! I am very much looking forward to the next book in his series!!! I have managed to get a copy for my son's birthday (and the author was kind enough to sign it!).
I give this book a 5/5. It is one that is great to read....and read again! and then pass on to the next generation of readers. You want to go and find this book and add it to the TOP of your pile of books to read!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Dreamlight Trilogy

Burning Lamp - Arcane Society, Bk 8 - Dreamlight, Bk 2
Author: Amanda Quick
The Arcane Society was born in turmoil when the friendship of its two founders evolved into a fierce rivalry. Sylvester Jones and Nicholas Winters each sought to enhance their individual psychic talents. Winters' efforts led to the creation of a device of unknown powers called the Burning Lamp. Each generation the Winters man who inherits it is destined to develop multiple talents -- and the curse of madness.

Plagued by hallucinations and nightmares, notorious crime lord Griffin Winters is convinced he has been struck with the Winters Curse. And the instincts that have helped him survive the streets and rise to power are now drawing him toward Adelaide Pyne, the bothersome social reformer. But even as he arranges a meeting with the mysterious woman, he has no idea how closely their fates are bound, for Adelaide holds the Burning Lamp in her possession.

A dreamlight reader, Adelaide should be able to manipulate the Lamp's light to save both Griffin's sanity and his life. But their dangerous psychical experiment makes them the target of forces both inside and outside of the Arcane Society. And though desire strengthens their power their different lives will keep them apart -- if death doesn't take them together.

Fired Up - Arcane Society, Bk 7 - Dreamlight, Bk 1
Author: Jayne Ann Krentz
More than three centuries ago, Nicholas Winters irrevocably altered his genetic makeup in an obsession-fueled competition with alchemist and Arcane Society founder Sylvester Jones. Driven to control their psychic abilities, each man's decision has reverberated throughout the family line, rewarding some with powers beyond their wildest dreams, and cursing others to a life filled with madness and hallucinations.

Jack Winters, descendant of Nicholas, has been experiencing nightmares and blackouts -- just the beginning, he believes -- of the manifestation of the Winters family curse. The legend says that he must find the Burning Lamp or risk turning into a monster. But he can't do it alone; he needs the help of a woman with the gift to read the lamp?s dreamlight.

Jack is convinced that private investigator Chloe Harper is that woman. Her talents for finding objects and accessing dream energy are what will save him, but their sudden and powerful sexual pull threatens to overwhelm them both. Danger surrounds them, and it doesn't take long for Chloe to pick up the trail of the missing lamp. And as they draw closer to the lamp, the raw power that dwells within it threatens to sweep them into a hurricane of psychic force.

Midnight Crystal - Arcane Society, Bk 9 - Harmony, Bk 7 - Dreamlight, Bk 3
Author: Jayne Castle
For many earthly centuries, a legendary curse has plagued the Winters family, stemming from the tumultuous founding of the Arcane Society. But now, on the futuristic world of Harmony, the curse’s final mystery will be unraveled ... — Adam Winters has enough responsibility as the new head of the local Ghost Hunter Guild without being saddled with the family curse. He’s convinced his recent nightmares and hallucinations will lead to him becoming a psychic rogue -- unless he can find a stolen relic and a woman who can read dreamlight.

Marlowe Jones rides into his life on a motorcycle and with a dust bunny at her side. Though a descendant of the rival Arcane family, she’s just what Adam needs: a psychic private investigator and dreamlight reader extraordinaire.

Together, amid the glowing catacombs and steamy underground jungles of Harmony, Adam and Marlowe must break the curse, save the entire underworld -- and fight a passion that could destroy them both ...

My Thoughts:
I completely enjoyed this trilogy! Yes, I put them out of order as to which they say is book 1 & 2...chronologically, they are in this order. I enjoyed the fast pace of all of the books. She does an excellent job of keeping your attention through the whole of the book. They are all packed with lots of suspense and intrigue.

These are not in my normal reading genre, but I have learned to enjoy them tremendously thanks to this writer. The fact that she builds on each one and intertwines all of the books and characters just helps keep you looking for what is going to happen next. They are a quick, easy read that will help to take you out of the every day and into the unusual for a nice period of time.

I give them a 4/5. You will enjoy reading them, but there are some parts that I tend to skip as I prefer not to read about it.....