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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

'The Christmas Singing' by Cindy Woodsmall

I'm not usually one for Christian fiction or Christian romance books. I've read a few Amish romance novels and I couldn't ever connect with the characters. My own life seems so far removed from the characters in these kinds of books, so normally I don't really have a frame of reference to go with. So I don't really know why I picked this book to review but I'm glad I did.

This is a light easy read with characters that are real and flawed and likable. The story centers around Mattie who had her heart broken by the love of her life, Gideon. She then moves out of state, starts a new life with her own bakery and meets a safe, nice man who she plans to marry. Through various circumstances, she comes back into contact with Gideon and realizes that she's not over him completely.

While the ending became a little predictable, I enjoyed this book all the way to the end. Honestly though, every romance novel regardless of genre is a little predictable! I don't want to give anything about the story away, but there's really no bad guy here. All the characters had their flaws but you could really empathize with them. They all had their reasons for doing the things they did but didn't try to actively hurt one another.

My only small complaint is, there were parts that I felt would have been better and made the story overall better if they had been fleshed out more. A little longer, more in depth book would have been better for me.

A nice surprise is the recipes at the end of the book for the cakes in the story. They sound so very yummy and if I ever have the time and the inspiration I might have to pull out this book and make one of those cakes.   If Christian romance, especially Amish is your thing you will really enjoy this book.

I received a copy of this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers in exchange for my review. I was not required to give a positive review and all thoughts contained within are my own.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

'The Respect Dare: 40 Days to a Deeper Connection with God and Your Husband' by Nina Roesner

Just a little disclaimer at the beginning of this review, I haven't actually gone through and done all the dares. I just read the book for this review and I plan on going back through later and doing all the dares.

Just like the Love Dare this book is a forty day journey. But unlike the Love Dare, this book focuses more on changing your own thoughts and feelings instead of showing lots of outward signs of affection and respect. I think that this is good for several reasons. One, while all men like to have the respect of their wives, respect looks different for every man. Two, it helps us as women to understand that our actions can really build our husbands up or tear them down in a way that no one else on earth can.

Just reading the book I was amazed at how in depth it is. At first I was a little confused about some of the chapters like the 17 Frying Pans chapter. I realize that keeping an orderly home helps things to run smoothly and better but I just felt like it was out of place. Unless you husband really wants you to keep an orderly house. Then it makes sense.

I do like how in every chapter there is scripture. That's where we get the strength to be the women that God has called us to be and He needs to be central in everything. Plus the verses tied very well into what she was trying to say into the chapter. That showed me that massive thought was put into this book.

The one drawback to the book for me was all the talking about the authors Daughters of Sarah program. It just felt like the author found a way to get lots of free advertising in. While it did annoy me after awhile, it didn't take away from the overall message for me.

I would recommend this book. I honestly can't wait to start actually doing the dares. It seems like an answer to a prayer for me to have found this book. It's exactly what I need to change the direction I am heading in my marriage. Get the book! You won't be disappointed.

I got this book for free for review from Thomas Nelson Publishers. I was not required to give a positive review and all thoughts contained in this review are my own.