Friday, January 31, 2014

2014 Series Challenge Hosted by Read. Sleep. Repeat.'s

Series Challenge Button take2

A few days ago I saw this challenge, and though "hey, I have a few series that I started and need to complete, and a few I haven't read but want to read, so I might as well enter. Right?" So I am entering my third and probably last year long challenge for 2014!
Normally if I start a series, as long as I like it, I have to finish it. But sometimes I get sidetracked and keep putting the book off, or I don't want it to end yet, so I put it off until I'm so curious about what really happened that I have to finish it. Hey, stop giving me that look! Don't we all think of how we want a series to end?
You can earn badges based on the number of series you complete
Bronze Badge ~ 1-3 series
Silver Badge ~ 4-6 series
Gold Badge ~ 7-11
Platinum Badge ~ 12 plus
By earning a badge you will be entered into a certain giveaway.

Some of the rules
~ As long as you FINISH the series in 2014, the book counts. This means that if there are three books in the series and you read the first two last year, if you read the last book this year it can count toward this challenge.
~ Books read this year to complete the challenge must be reviewed in some way - a full review, mini review, or just a rating and a few sentences.
~ If the series won't be complete by December 1, 2014 read up to the most recent book, and there must be at least two books in the series before December 1, 2014.
Go here for more info

Of course, me being an overachiever like I am, my goal is to finish or read up to the most recent book of a series of at least 2 for 12 series between January 1, 2014 and December 31, 2014 (but who know if that will actually happen?)
I will be keeping track of books I have completed for this challenge by adding them to a shelf on Goodreads, as well as posting my progress at the end of each month my blog!

Does anyone else have a bunch of series they need to complete or plan on entering this challenge? Let me know!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Anomaly by Krista McGee

Anomaly (Anomaly #1)Anomaly by Krista McGee

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis:
Thalli has fifteen minutes and twenty-three seconds left to live. The toxic gas that will complete her annihilation is invading her bloodstream. But she is not afraid.

Thalli is different than others in The State. She feels things. She asks questions. And in the State, this is not tolerated. The Ten scientists who survived the nuclear war that destroyed the world above believe that emotion was at the core of what went wrong—and they have genetically removed it from the citizens they have since created. Thalli has kept her malformation secret from those who have monitored her for most of her life, but when she receives an ancient piece of music to record as her community’s assigned musician, she can no longer keep her emotions secreted away.

Seen as a threat to the harmony of her Pod, Thalli is taken to the Scientists for immediate annihilation. But before that can happen, Berk—her former Pod mate who is being groomed as a Scientist—steps in and persuades the Scientists to keep Thalli alive as a test subject.

The more time she spends in the Scientist’s Pod, the clearer it becomes that things are not as simple as she was programmed to believe. She hears stories of a Designer—stories that fill her mind with more questions: Who can she trust? What is this emotion called love? And what if she isn’t just an anomaly, but part of a greater design?

This book was truly amazing! I can't believe I waited so long to read it!
First of all, the fact that these people are not allowed to show emotion or ask questions is terrible and sad, for what is life if we can't feel? While some of the people in Thalli's pod have no problem with this, it grows increasingly hard for Thalli to hide the fact that she is curious and feels many emotions all the time.

I loved how Thalli played her emotions through her music! I play the flute, and sometimes the piano, so I understand what it's like to feel the emotions and see the story in a piece of music, and play the music with your own emotions.

While at the scientists pod she finds out that her world is not as it seems, that the scientists lie, she gets to spend more time with her old, loyal, and wonderful friend Berk, and she meets a man named John who teaches her about the Designer, love, and faith.

Anomaly by Krista McGee is beautifully written and at times heartbreaking. I loved going through Thalli and Berk's journey of faith, and finding out truths instead of believing in all of the lies. I couldn't put Anomaly down, I just had to find out what happened with these characters (this book made me bite my lips, it was so nerve wrecking at times). Thalli and Berk's relationship seemed so real, throughout the book I felt their emotions, I cried, I smiled, I hoped. I even caught myself almost praying for the characters while I was reading!

Will Thalli be allowed to live? If she does will she have to live the rest of her life as a lab rat? Will she and Berk be able to see each other? What will happen if they get caught in any schemes?
Anomaly will make you think and wonder about what you would do if you were in a situation similar to this. It is a must read book for Christians, and even people that aren't Christians should enjoy the dystopian elements, and the problems the characters go through!

(I was nervous to read a dystopian book. I know that everyone else seems to like them, but I wasn't sure if I would. Well, as you can see I definitely liked Anomaly and will be ready to read more dystopian books!)

View all my reviews

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Netgalley ~ My New Reading BFF

I am so excited! I just got approved for my first two Netgalley books!! 

I knew that some people receive free ebooks from Netgalley for review, and so I decided that since within the last few months I have been trying to cut back on how much I spend on books, I would check it out, just to see what kind of books they had.  They had some books that I have really been wanting to read! So I requested a few of them (some of which aren't out yet). 
Then I read the tips for being approved. I saw that it helps if you have at least 1,000 followers on your blog. That's a lot! I have nowhere near that many! 
I already knew that I probably wouldn't be approved for any free copies from Netgalley, but after reading that I was sure. But I knew that it didn't really matter, because I love to read and blog, and it doesn't matter if I get very many free books.
Then today I got approved for two books from Netgalley! 

I would like to say thank you to Netgalley and the Zondervan Z Street Team for sending me free books! 

What I received for review
A Match Made in Texas 
Where Courage Calls 

Waiting On Wednesday (hosted by Breaking the Spine)

Cress (Lunar Chronicles, #3)Cress by Marissa Meyer


Oh my gosh! Cress by Marissa Meyer finally comes out next Tuesday! I have already read Cinder and Scarlet, and the story is so interesting, unique, and wonderful. I have been waiting and waiting for Cress to come out so I can find out what happens next! I will definitely be buying this book first thing Tuesday morning! Is anyone else excited for Cress?

View all my reviews

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke & the Bookish
This weeks topic: Top Ten Worlds I'd Never Want to Live In

1. The Selection - The caste system of this society is ridiculously not fair.

2. Mila 2.0 - A world where they want to create lifelike androids, but torture them in cruel ways? No thank you. I actually didn't read all of this book.

3. Anomaly - I am currently reading this book, but it would be horrible to live in a world where you didn't have choices, and couldn't show emotions.

Books I haven't read yet (most of which I probably won't read), but definitely wouldn't want to live in.
4. Divergent
5. Delirium
6. The Hunger Games
7. Legend

These worlds all sound terrible, and definitely not like my paradise. Violence, dictatorships, caste systems, and things like that are NOT my type of life!
What are the top ten worlds that you wouldn't want to live in?

Monday, January 27, 2014

Waterfall (River of Time, #1)Waterfall by Lisa Tawn Bergren

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am reviewing this as a series, because I don't want to spoil anything for those who haven't read these amazing books yet. I actually read this series a while ago (I've read most of it twice) but what kind of person would I be if I didn't share my favorite series on my blog?!

The River of Time Series is my all time favorite series ever! (Are you excited yet?)  I have read them all, and they are a must read for all teens and adults, because they have something in them for everyone - suspense, adventure, amazing/interesting/relateable characters and setting, true love, and more. There are laugh out loud moments, parts that will make you cry, moments where you will say aww, and if you are a nail biter you might ruin your nails (don't say I didn't warn you) but it is totally worth it. I couldn't put these books down, and I know that you will love them too.

As Gabriella and Lia Betarrini travel back in time they discover many things about themselves and about life, you will follow them on that path and go to a whole new world - ancient Italy.

The characters are described so well that they feel like real people, and as the book goes on you get to know and love them even more. Lisa Tawn Bergren did a phenomonal job of making us feel like we are the main character! We feel like we are facing each and every trial and obstacle that jumps out at Gabriella, Lia, Marcello, and all of the other characters while being absorbed in these pages. They were just so AMAZING. (The setting And descriptions are also FANTASTIC and play a huge part in that).

I loved Gabriella, Lia, Luca, and Marcello's personalities, and how family was so important to them. I totally related to that. Marcello was soooooo wonderful, and he is sooo perfect for Gabriella. Need I say more?

I also loved that these books are also Christian books.  How faith is so important to Marcello, and how  the sisters grow in their faith as they go through the series. (Even if you are not a Christian you should still read these books, it wasn't overly done or preachy so it shouldn't bother you)

These books must be read in order, and anyone who doesn't read them will miss out on one of the best series of books ever, trust me, you won't regret reading them.  The only bad part about the books was that they ended, I could have gone forever reading them. I truly hope that Lisa Tawn Bergren will write more books like these, and she has definitely become one of my favorite authors! I hope everyone else who reads these books will love them as much as I did!Waterfall

Books in the River of Time series
Refuge (not released yet)

The Grand Tour series is also an amazing series by Lisa Tawn Bergren. (I have read it, and a review is coming).

View all my reviews

TBR Pile Challenge hosted by Bookish

This is the first challenge other than the Goodreads 2013 and 2014 Reading Challenges that I have ever entered. So as you can probably guess I'm a little nervous!
I have quite a few books that I have been meaning to read, but haven't got around to yet, so this should be a good challenge to enter. It sounds really fun, and they will be doing giveaways to - even though I have only entered about three in the past I plan on entering a lot more in the future. This challenge is to read books that have been on your to be read list for a while. I have such a long wish list on my Barnes and Nobles nook that it won't even load the list anymore, so I had to start making a list somewhere else!
This challenge starts January 1, 2014 and ends December 31,2014
To see the details check out
I am entering Level First Kiss, which is to read 21-30 books- you are allowed to move up lvels but not down- and I will be posting my progress once a month!

Here is some of what I plan on reading
My Name is Rapunzel
Let it Snow
The Distance Between Us
Finding June
A Change of Fortune
Nobodys Rrincess
The grass is always greener

Just to name a few! This will most likely be changed and added to. I know there are many more books that are on my wishlist!

Let me know if you are entering this challenge, or just have an outrageous TBR pile!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Gods at War Student Edition: The battle for your heart that will define your lifeGods at War Student Edition: The battle for your heart that will define your life by Kyle Idleman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Gods at War Student Edition: The battle for your heart that will define your life

gods at War by Kyle Idleman was a thought provoking book. I am a Christian so I found reading about the concept of idolatry to be most likely true in everyone's life at times, and a serious issue that we don't always realize we face or commit.

The way this book was written kept my attention, and I really liked how Kyle Idleman used passages from the Bible, explained and elaborated on them, then put them in context for the twenty first century. I also liked how he talked about how the different "gods" ( as in god of achievement) have evolved over time.

There were many sentences from this book that would make great quotes, and I really liked some of the references and comparisons.

One of my favorite things that Kyle Idleman mentioned in this book was that the heart is the center of a person and that everything that we do should reflect our heart and therefore God (because he should be at the center of our heart and lives).

I will be honest and say that I did not read about one of the "gods" because it was not something that is in my reading comfort/appropriate zone. Though I do understand why it was in the book, I just didn't want to read that much about it.

Will you choose to let God win the war of your heart, and give him glory and control over our lives? I know I have!

I received an ARC of this book for free from the Zondervan Z Street Team in exchange for an honest review.

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$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash Giveaway

Romance through the Ages (7 Book Romance Boxed Set)Romance through the Ages by Amy Harmon

Romance through the Ages

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To Read

The books I read throughout the week tend to change. Either because I read a book that is in a series and have to read the next one, or I just fell like reading something else.

I received an ARC of Gods at War by Kyle Idleman for review from Zondervan.
Today would be a great day to read it since we can't go to Church because of all this beautiful but cold and icy snow.

I will also definitely be reading
 Anomaly by Krista McGee, because I have been wanting to read it for a while, and I finally got it (it's on sale for $2.99 on Nook!).
Swipe by Kathy Reichs and Brendan Reichs

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Inside Out

I saw this book tag on Christian Bookshelf Reviews and it sounded like a lot of fun, so I thought I'd join along. The tag was originally created byMathomBooks on YouTube.

I ~ Inside flap/Back of the book summaries: Too much info? Or not enough (Discuss)

I like to know what a book is going to be about, and most of the time I have to read the summary plus a bunch of reviews about a book before I will buy or elders it. But I definitely don't want the book to be spoiled! 

N ~ New book: What form do you want it in? Be honest: Audiobook, E-Book, Paperback, or Hardcover?

I honestly prefer paperback books, bit I also like Ebooks. Nothing beats holding a paperback book in your hand and flipping through the pages or fingering the next page before you turn it!

S ~ Scribble while you read? Do you like to write in your books, taking notes, making comments, or do you keep your books clean clean clean? (Tell us why)

No Way Will I Ever Scribble In A Book! I believe that books should be respected, and that scribbling in it takes away from the story. If I want to take notes I use a notebook or sticky notes.

I ~ In your best voice, read for us your favorite 1st sentence from a book.

This one is super hard! I do love the first sentence of Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson. It is very beautiful just like the rest of the book. I love the reference to birds and it is perfect to lead into the rest of the story!
"A woodlark sings of heartache. A swallow calls in the two-tone rhythm of a race. And a blackbird's song is the whistle of homecoming. 

D ~ Does it matter to you whether the author is male or female when you're deciding on a book? What if you're unsure of the author's gender?

The authors gender doesn't bother me, but I do find and read more books by females. 

E ~ Ever read ahead? or have you ever read the last page way before you got there?

Usually the only times I read ahead in a book are if I am extremely bored. This doesn't happen very often though. When I was little I used to have a bad habit of flipping to the last page just to make sure the book would end the way I wanted it to. I finally decided that I needed to break that habit about five years ago. I had been doing really well until it read Tigers Destiny by Colleen Houck (the fourth book in the tigers curse series). Honestly I had been waiting and waiting for the book to come out, the series was so good, and I pretty much knew that I was going to have to look at the last page sometime before the end of the book. I was kind of impressed when I manages to get 50 pages into it without looking, but I just couldn't take it anymore! I haven't done that since though! Thank goodness! I feel that looking at the last page takes away from the diverse emotions we feel when reading. 


O ~ Organized bookshelves, or Outrageous bookshelves?

I try really hard to keep my bookshelves organized. The books in a series must go together, certain books have their certain places... Sometimes my ten year old sister likes to go through my books, so I tell her that she must put them back where she found them. She doesn't listen very well so I have to reorganize them!

U ~ Under oath: have you ever bought a book based on the cover (alone)?

No, definitely not!! A lot of the time the cover draws me to a book, but like I said earlier I'm one of those prople that has to read the summary and multiple reviews before I will spend my money on a book, or even borrow it!

T~ Take it outside to read, or stay in?

I love to read outside!! If it is warm enough, I will spend almost the whole day reading outside. I just love the sounds, views, smells, and the wonderful feeling that I always get when reading outside! In the winter and on cold rainy days I do enjoy curling up with a books and some hot chocolate though!

What about you? How do you feel about these things? I would love to hear know so feel free to comment and discuss!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Trouble in Store by Carol Cox

Trouble in StoreTrouble in Store by Carol Cox

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Trouble in StoreWhen Melanie is fired from her governess job in the east, she heads west to her deceased uncles store to claim her share. But she doesn't expect to find that his partner had died a few months after her uncle. Therefore she will encounter Caleb Nelson, the nephew and heir of the other half of the store. Will Caleb ever except her and the changes she wants to make throughout the store? Will they solve the mystery before anyone else gets hurt? And will they find love between helping their customers and solving the mystery?

Trouble in Store by Carol Cox captivated me from the very first page! The characters and mystery were very well written and kept me interested throughout the whole book.

Melanie and Caleb were very interesting, witty, and funny characters. Their conversations made me laugh, and it was entertaining to see how Caleb didn't want Melanie there at first ( and how he tried to marry her off to one of the over abundance of men in town) and her determination to stay. His attitude toward her newfangled changes to the store. Her refusal to let that stop her. His child and her governess background. When they both realized that the other wasn't so bad after all!

The other characters that came into the store were also interesting and a great contribution to the book as a whole. They were very diverse and at times funny and surprising. The setting was fantastic and perfect for this mystery!

The mystery was very well done. It was intriguing and more serious than it appeared at first. It was nice to see Melanie and Caleb work together on it even when he was reluctant to get along with her and later wanted to keep her safe. The transition between that was funny and you will laugh out loud at moments!

I loved everything about this book! If you want to be completely drawn into an amazing book than this is for you! I highly recommend it to everyone that likes to read! It has something for everyone.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Love in Disguise by Carol Cox

Love in DisguiseLove in Disguise by Carol Cox
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Love in DisguiseOne and the same! Ellie was brilliant to be able to disguise herself in two ways that are so opposite from each other, and keep the townspeople from guessing that her characters are one and the same. As Lavinia Stewart, an older lady who is in town to invest in a mine, and Jessie Monroe, her niece who makes men fall head over heels for her, Ellie tries to get the people of Pickford to talk.

The mystery and Pinkerton Detective aspects of this book, as well as the time period, were very intriguing and well done. It was unique and interesting to see Ellie with a theater background, who wanted so badly to act, go undercover. Though this book started off a little slow during the first half, it definitely made up for it in the second half.

I loved the characters of both Ellie and Steven. It was nice to see them both grow in their faith, especially Ellie who hadn't gone to Church or prayed since she was little. Ellie and Stevens relationship was cute and sweet, and their talks and interactions were sweet and funny. Though I thought it was sad how she was so afraid that he wouldn't notice her as Ellie instead of Jessie.

This book made me laugh with its witty characters and laugh out loud moments. This is a great book for anyone that loves mystery, historical, or Christian fiction, or is looking for a funny and light read.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish
Top Ten Things On My Reading Wishlist (if you could make authors write about these things you would. Could be a specific type of character, an issue tackled, a time period, a certain plot, etc.)

1. YA Christian novels
For many teens, myself included,  Faith in God is the most important aspect of our lives. Write more Christian based books that show us how to deal with life and problems in a Christian way, and lead others to God by showing them how God makes our lives whole.

2. YA novels set in countries other than the U.S.
I love the United States of America. I really do! But sometimes when I read I just want to go to a new place, a new country, somewhere I have never been before. What if I never get to physically go to any other country? Sometimes living in a world and experiencing a culture through the pages of a book is the best (or only) way you will ever get to. Please I'm begging you!

3. YA Christmas novels 
Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year. Jesus's birth the reason for the season, the spirit of joy, love, giving, and miracles that fills is us especially during this time of the year. The possibilities are endless! I absolutely love Christmas! I looked and looked for good YA Chriatmas books in December, but there are barely any, which really disappointed and upset me.

4. YA Historical Novels
Call me a nerd! The fact still remains that I  like history. It plays a  huge part in all of our lives, and when written through the eyes of fictional characters in becomes even more interesting and more retainable. Historical fiction is fun to read and you learn history sometimes without even realizing it, and definitely without falling asleep! From regency Europe to the Underground Railroad and so much more.

5. YA Fairytales 
As children we grow up hearing the stories of Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, etc. Why not make these Fairytales more intricate and detailed as we become older? Everyone deserves a happy ever after. 

6. Inspiring YA
Teens need to hear stories that will inspire them to make a difference in the world. Novels like Sweeter than Birdsong and Soul Surfer. These novels could help them come up with an idea that could help make the world a better place. 

7. YA novels with Angels
I love books with Angels in them, where miracles happen and create hope for all who read them. Teens definitely need more of this!

8. YA Mystery
You can never have to much mystery! From buried treasure, to missing Friends or items, to mysterious events, to undercover detectives. Past or present, mystery  is always intriguing.

9. YA with animals
I love animals! Sometimes I wonder why there aren't any books where the main character volunteers at a veterinary clinic or does a summer program with a zoo. It would be so interesting! 

10. Roadtrips
Cross country Roadtrips  with family or friends is always interesting. You have so many opportunities to see new places, make new friends, and create memories. Surprises around every corner!

These are just the first 10 things that I would like to see in books that popped into my mind! What would you like to see?

Monday, January 20, 2014

Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson

BlackmooreBlackmoore by Julianne Donaldson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Blackmoore(I read this book a few months ago, but have to review it for my new blog since it was so good)

How can a book be so beautiful and amazing yet so utterly heartbreaking? Read this truly amazing book to find out. This story of Kate and Henry will stay in your mind forever.

This book made me laugh and it definitely made me cry. It made my heart soar with hope and then plummet to the ground again and back up, over and over again.

I felt so sorry for Kate, because of the way her mother acted, and because she felt that she had to hide her love for Henry. I could feel the crushing disappointment and desperation of both Kate and Henry at times.

Kate wanted to be free so badly. Doesn't everyone deserve to be free?!

The references to the freedom of a bird was beautiful and sad, and perfectly written in this book. There was so much beautiful symbolism!
Julianne Donaldson is an amazing writer, because the every word of the entire book flowed together beautifully. The flashbacks of their past were brilliantly woven into the story at just the right points to create the perfect effect.

Kate and Henry's lifelong friendship was beautiful and amazing. I loved how Henry was so honorable and kept his promise to Kate (even after so long) that she would see and get to go to Blackmoor. What he had done for her earlier in their friendship was so sweet and said so much about him (you have to read to find out).

I could really go on and on about this book, and write a whole essay about it, but then you would feel like you didn't need to read it, so I will stop now so I won't spoil it.
Pleeease read this book. I promise you won't regret it.

View all my reviews

Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson

EdenbrookeEdenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

(I read this book a couple of months ago, but want to review it now for my new blog, but I will definitely be reading it over and over again later!)

WOW! I totally loved everything about this book! It was truly amazing. Edenbrooke completely drew me in from the beginning, with its details and flowing writing. Marianne was an interesting and very relatable character who just wants to escape her boring world. I must say that she did a fantastic job of doing that!

Edennrooke is one of my favorite settings, and between the descriptions and character interactions I completely got lost in it.

Philip was very sweet, witty, smart, charming, and totally swoon worthy. The conversations between him and Marianne were funny and witty. Every time they were together, I just wanted to smile (and at times say awww).
I have never read a book like this, where as soon as I finished it I wanted to read it all over again from the beginning! This is a must read for everyone, because if you don't read this book, you are missing out on the read of your life!
I could go on and on about this book, but I really think you should read it yourself, so I refuse to give any spoilers!

View all my reviews

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Christian Bookshelf Reviews Blogoversary Party" target="_blank">Photobucket
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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Cress by Marissa Meyer giveaway

I found a great ARC givraway of Cress by Marissa Meyer! Go to this link to enter

The Season by Sarah Maclean

The SeasonThe Season by Sarah MacLean

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The SeasonThe Season is a really great book! It has everything I like in a book including England, mystery, clean romance, and witty characters. This book made me laugh, smile, say aww, and so much more.

First of all I absolutely love historical books, especially when they take place in England. This book was a perfect description of the time period, and so were the characters. I loved how Alex remained true to herself, even though what she wanted wasn't common for girls in that time period.

I must say that Gavin was a really fantastic character. I loved the history between him and Alex, and their witty conversations made me laugh. They were so perfect for each other and I couldn't help myself from rooting for them from the beginning! The descriptions were amazing, and I completely lost myself in the book. The mystery was intriguing, and I loved how Alex and Gavin ended up working together to solve it.

I highly recommend this book to everyone who loves historical books, witty characters and conversations, intriguing mystery, amazing descriptions, and so much more.

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New Book

I received this book free from Zondervan!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Whispers from the Shadows (The Culper Ring #2)Whispers from the Shadows by Roseanna M. White

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Whispers from the ShadowsWOW! This book was very intruiuging! Not only did I not see all of those twists and turns coming, but I couldn't put down this book. All of the characters came to life and had so many realistic and unique characteristics that they almost lept off of the pages. Well done Roseanna M. White!

I loved the elements that were taken from the first book, Ring of Secrets, including many of the characters and Culper Ring elements, as well as the art elements.

One of my favorite things about this book was how it relayed the message of how we should always put our faith and trust in God, especially in times of trouble or doubt. For God is the only one that has the ability to always be there for us and rescue us.
Another thing that I really thought was amazing was how Thaddeus got intuitive thoughts from God leading him in the right direction and telling him what to do many times throughout tne book. Hopefully that happens to all of us sometimes!

The murder of General Fairchild was very sad. I felt terrible for Gwyneth, his daughter and one of the main characters, who was extremely tortured by not only losing her father but witnessing her uncle murder him.

Though there are very sad times in this book - Fairchilds death, the war, etc. - this book also made me laugh. It was so funny and sweet how Gwyneth trusted Thaddeus so much from the start that she was only able to sleep when he was in the house and even fell asleep multiple times when he was talking, from exhaustion when he arrived home! The conversations between Gwyneth, Thadeus, and the whole Lane family were also funny and enlightening.

This book had a great plot, interesting characters, wonderful messages and faith, history, clean romance, and so much more!
This book will leave you thinking about it days after you finish it!
I really need to stop now so I don't spoil anything!

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Thursday, January 16, 2014

Sweeter than Birdsong by Rosslyn Elliot

Sweeter Than Birdsong (Saddler's Legacy, #2)Sweeter Than Birdsong by Rosslyn Elliott
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Sweeter Than Birdsong
This book was truly inspiring! I am going to warn you now though that I almost gave this book a 4, because parts of it were so extremely sad, but after time away from the book, I am ready to give it a 5, because of how inspiring it was and great message that it conveys.

I totally relate to Kate Winters! As a student at the top of her class at the beginning, she was so shy and afraid to speak in front of her College class. I am the same way! I loved the journey she went through throughout the book, growing into a new person with the help of Ben Hanby.

The Historical aspect of this book was also amazing. It was great to read a book about the Underground Railroad and how some people, despite the danger, risked their lives for the freedom of slaves. I have never understood how anyone could treat people in the cruel ways that slave owners treated their slaves. It was unjust and not right in any way. I have always hoped that I would have had the courage to stand up for what I believed in if faced with a situation like that.

Ben Hanby was an amazing character as well. He and his family were real people, and really were involved in helping slaves gain freedom via the underground railroad.  I loved how he was so determined to write his song and do justice to the reason he was writing it (I can't say why, because that would be a spoiler), and how he and his family were all so kind and determined to help those in need.

Ben and Kate were such a good couple! It was nice how they talked and helped each other get through things even though their circumstances were against them. The way Kate's parents acted, especially at the beginning was really sad, especially since I don't know what I would do without my wonderful parents.

The only problem I had with this book I can't say without it being a huge spoiler, but I understand why it had to be that way. Ben never would have written his song to that effect if it hadn't, though it was extremely sad (I cried a lot, not tears I could hide either).Don't let this stop you from reading it though, because it was one of the MOST INSPIRING BOOKS I HAVE EVER READ!

One of the things that Nelly, one of the slaves they were helping escape, said was truly inspiring, and so perfect for that time. "Up there where no one can catch him, he sings that freedom song." I also love the part at the end when Kate truly stands up for what she believed in.

Rosslyn Elliot did a truly fantastic job writing this book. The writing was fantastic, interesting, and completely well done.

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Waiting On Wednesday

Sorry this post is a day late, yesterday I was trying to add pages and organize my blog a little!

Season of Wonder (Remnants) by Lisa Tawn Bergren
I am super excited for this book to come out!! I have read Lisa Tawn Bergren's River of Time and Grand Tour series. They were both amazing, and Lisa Tawn Bergren has a way with writing and creating characters, settings, and story-lines, that can captivate the reader and make me want to read her books all day and over and over again. Season of Wonder sounds really interesting, and I can't wait to read it!
This book is expected to be published February 26, 2014.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

New Blogging Experience

I love to read and write, but I am new to blogging. I have been following a few book blogs for a while now, and I thought that since I read all of the time and love to write that I would give it a try, because it looked fun. So far I really like and look forward to posting reviews about book I just finish reading.
It's been a while since I've read a few of the six books I have already posted reviews for, but they were books that I really really like and wanted to put on my blog ASAP!
I might try to post a few more reviews of my favorite books that I have read in the past, and I once again apologize if I don't write as much on those reviews as I would have if I had just read them, but I will try my best. They will be between books I am currently reading, and I will probably specify if it has been a while since I read it. Characters and events in books (especially my favorites) tend to stay in my memory for a while!
Looking forward to joining the book blogging world!

Ring of Secrets

Ring of Secrets (The Culper Ring #1)Ring of Secrets by Roseanna M. White

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Roseanna M. White has a gift for writing and creating wonderful characters. Just in case you hadn't already guessed, I loved this book!

First of all I loved the setting and how Winter's relationship with God was evident throughout the book, and the mystery and intrigue with the Culper Ring (which was real). Winter was a very likable character who was very smart, though she hid her true self by a mask to please her Grandmother and hide her feelings.
The relationship between Winter Reeves and Bennet Lane was wonderful and so sweet. He could see through Kate's mask from the start and gradually tried to unravel the mystery of Kate Winters. Kate didn't want to like Bennet at first, but eventually they fall for each other. Through the dangers of espionage, their secrets, and their circumstances, will Kate and Bennet have a happy ever after?
Kate was such a good person who wanted to do the right thing, though she didn't always know what that was at first. With prayer will she be able to figure everything out, and be able to let down her mask?
Another character that I really liked was Freeman, Winter's second father. It was amazing how even though he was black and Winter's grandfather didn't like him, he was still loyal to Winter and watched over her like she was his own child while her father fought in the war.
While this was a historical fiction book, it wasn't dull in any way. Though I learned many things, the descriptions and conversations between characters were amazing, and I could see it all playing out in my head (just like with any good book). There were many valuable lessons that the characters of this book learned such as looking past a persons facade, how everyone is equal and should be treated fairly

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Glamorous Illusions

Glamorous Illusions (Grand Tour, #1)Glamorous Illusions by Lisa Tawn Bergren

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Glamorous IllusionsGlamorous Illusions was an amazing book that contains valuable lessons about family, life, and God. It was so interesting and entertaining that I got lost in it {like I do in all great books}. I loved the tour and the places that it takes the characters as well as the readers. Lisa Tawn Bergren does a fantastic job of creating wonderful, likable, interesting, and relatable characters. Will was such a great man, and is completely perfect for Cora.
I love how throughout the series Cora has a huge impact on her new siblings as well as the people around her. She sets a wonderful example as she grows in her faith and learns who she is.
I think I should stop now, so I don't spoil anything, but this is definitely a must read series!

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One Realm Beyond

One Realm Beyond (Realm Walkers)One Realm Beyond by Donita K. Paul

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

One Realm BeyondOne Realm Beyond by Donita K. Paul is the first book in the Realm Walkers series. Cantor D'Ahma was born and trained to be a realm walker (a protector and defender of all the realms of the land). His adventures lead him to meet new people and make new friends. Cantor, Bixby, Bridger, Totobee-Rodolow, Dukme, will meet both people they can and can't trust along the way. They will make many discoveries about the worlds around him, how the Realm Walkers Guild is corrupt, and most of all their belief in what is right and wrong and what God would want him to do.

I really enjoyed how this book was written, incorporating new elements, worlds, and characters. I loved how the characters were all diverse, but still had things in common and got along so well together. By using their unique natural talents will they be able to save the citizens from the corrupt Realm Walkers Guild? You will have to read it to find out! This book will leave you wishing that the next one was already out!

I recommend this book to anyone that enjoys adventure, mystery, magic, and fantasy.

I received an advance copy of this book from the Zondervan Z Street Team in exchange for an honest review.

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Destination Unknown

Destination UnknownDestination Unknown by Amy Clipston

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Destination Unknown
Destination Unknown by Amy Clipston was a wonderful book, that I enjoyed very much. Though Whitney has everything she could want, the one thing she doesn't have is her freedom. Everything in Whitney's life is decided for her by her mother; from her hair color, to her activities, to the College she will attend, and even her friends. Consequently she is unable to live her own life and be herself. When her self centered rude boyfriend breaks up with her on Valentines day, and her friends and even her mom don't understand why she doesn't want him back, she realizes that her friends might not be true friends and that what her mom wants isn't necessarily what she wants. So when Taylor becomes her tutor will she realize who the real Whitney is, before it's to late? As she turns to God for help, Whitney will learn many things including how to stand up for herself in order to make her own choices, respect for her parents, how kind Taylor is and what it's like to have a friend that listens to her, and most important how to grow in her relationship with her parents, friends, and most of all God.
I don't want to spoil anything so I will just say that I liked the character growth in this book, as Whitney makes her own decisions and stands up for herself. I also liked how she interacted with Taylor and his kind family.
This was a great book and I recommend it to anyone.
I would like to thank the Z Street Team for a free ARC of Destination Unknown.

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