Monday, January 30, 2017


I received a copy of OSWIU: KING OF KINGS by Edoardo Albert from Lion Fiction via Kregel in exchange for an honest review. It is part of the Northumbrian Thrones series.  This is one of my favorite book serials, as it involves historical fiction, one of my dirty pleasures.  Okay, its not dirty, unless you take into consideration the gritty rawness of the past.  The setting is so descriptive, you feel as if you are there.  You must keep glancing up from the pages to ground yourself.

OSWIU isn’t afraid to delve into survival and politics.  In this book, Oswiu is fighting against Penda, King of Mercia.  While it is beneficial to have read the first two books, you don’t need to in order to enjoy this installment.  There is a quick recap to catch you up to speed.  It had been a while since I read them, so I found that beneficial.

While I did love this book, I would have liked to know more about Oswiu apart from his fight against Penda.  I realize this isn’t a biography, though.  I ended up doing my own research on him after completing the novel.

Bravo to the author for writing such stellar science fiction.

Monday, January 23, 2017

Amish Weddings

I received a copy of AMISH WEDDINGS by Leslie Gould in exchange for an honest review from Bethany House.  It is the third installment in the Neighbors of Lancaster County series.  This is my favorite of the series.  I am curious and hopeful that there will be more to come.  If you loved past characters, you will find them resurfacing here.  (As a note, AMISH WEDDINGS also works as a stand-alone novel.)

I had read the previous books, so I knew what to expect: sweet romance, a glimpse into the lives of the Amish, and an adventure that will keep the reader entertained. 

Rose questions whether Reuben really loves her.  I found that her inner turmoil spoke to me.  She is very realistic, especially as depicted as a teenage girl who is struggling with love.   While I did enjoy reading about Rose, and coming to like her as a strong character, I was thrilled to read more about Lila and Zane!  They are my all-time favorite couple in this series.

If you enjoy Amish books, you will find this one satisfying.  I am passing it along to my mother who loves Amish fiction.  We both visit Lancaster County quite often.  (I do wish that Lancaster County in the book felt more like the county I am familiar with.  In the series, it feels like generic farmland.  That could just be me, though)

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Kill Fee

I received a copy of THE KILL FEE by Fiona Vietch Smith in exchange for an honest review from Kregel Publication.  It is the second book in the Poppy Denby Investigations series.  I am a huge fan of mysteries, and this book, as well as its predecessor, offer hours of entertainment.  What I liked best was the fact that it takes place in the 1920s. I am a sucker for historical fiction.  THE KILL FEE focuses on Red and White Russians.  This was new to me, and I was quick to look up more about them after finishing the book.  All in all, this series reminds me of Miss Fischer’s Murder Mysteries.  If you are a fan of that television show, then this series is for you.

Poppy is a strong female lead.  She isn’t ready to back down, and this places her in many a treacherous situation.  If you love mysteries, you won’t be disappointed, although I recommend this more to history fans than mystery fans.  If you liked the first book, you will be happy to see that Poppy is the same loveable woman, and that the author is still adept at weaving an intriguing mystery into a vibrant setting.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Penelope Gilbert and the Children of Azure

PENELOPE GILBERT AND THE CHILDREN OF AZURE is an utterly adorable book for kids.  (By kids…the main character is 13.  I could see myself reading this around that age and it becoming one of my favorites.)

This book is one adventure after another, with cute drawings mixed in.  I liked how the action never stopped.  When I taught in elementary school, a lot of kids would complain about “boring” sections in books.  They would quit reading. I can see this book holding their attention the entire way through.

My favorite part is the charm which the author writes with.  The dialogue flows well, and there are quite a few humorous sections.  This book comes highly recommended!

Friday, January 13, 2017

The Chronicles Of Being Isisti

I received a copy of All Legends: The Chronicles Of Being Isisti: The Prequel to the Curse of Mary by Nicolajayne Taylor.  I had not read THE CURSE OF MARY prior to reading this.  You can read this as a standalone and enjoy it – I did!  I will, however, be looking for THE CURSE OF MARY to add to my to be read list.

This book is told from Isisti’s point of view.  Isisti is a demon.  I’ve always had a thing for stories that take on the demon’s point of view, mainly because I grew up with books where the demon was the bad guy, totally one sided.  You hated him or her, and that as that.  This book paints the demon as complex, worthy of a reader’s attention. 

Monday, January 9, 2017

Old Crimes and Nursery Rhymes

Another excellent mystery.  I flew through this one, as I had already read books 1 and 3.  (Yes, a little out of order, but still enjoyable)  The characters have plenty of heart and the setting is beautifully written.  I especially like the romantic elements.  Not many mysteries include romance, and I found that the inclusion made it all the sweeter.

Saturday, January 7, 2017


I am a huge fan of mysteries.  This one had heart and a beautiful setting.  A lot of mysteries I read are focused entirely on the mystery – you don’t get to learn much about the characters.  This one is different.  The characters are real, and you feel with them. 

I loved the antiques.  I’ve always had a special fondness for items of olden days, and it was exciting to read a mystery about them.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Death in the Shadows

I received a copy of DEATH IN THE SHADOWS by Paul McCusker from Lion Fiction via Kregel in exchange for an honest review.  It is the second book in the Father Gilbert Mystery series.  Like the first book, this is expertly written and you will find yourself not only lost in the mystery, but consumed by the characters and setting as well.

In this story, Father Gilbert is attending a three-day religious conference. It turns out that the town, Engelsea, isn’t a wonderful family vacation spot.  In fact, it is rather scummy.  Father Gilbert quickly becomes ensconced in a murder.  He sees an apparition and decides to investigate. If you’re like me, you won’t figure out who did it until the very end. 

Much of the book focuses on the sex-trade world, something I don’t normally read about.  It is, however, written tastefully.  I do find this book to be appropriate for adults and young adults.

I enjoy how Father Gilbert is written not just as a priest, but someone real and relatable.  I find that him being an awesome, intelligent person shines more than him being a man of the cloth, although the book doesn’t make light of religion.