Friday, November 30, 2012

Weekend Wrap-Up & Giveaway Winner!!


Weekend Wrap-up is where I share what I read this past week, am currently reading, and hope to read this coming week, and (when applicable) the current giveaways/giveaway winners. Occasionally I'll post some other stuff as well.

Feel free to join along and post your own Weekend Wrap-up on your blog/site (if you do, please leave the link in a comment so I can stop by) or, in a comment, share what you've accomplished (reading-wise) this past week. :)

 What I've read this week:



Only one book. :( This was a difficult week for me (for many reasons) and I just haven't felt like reading much. :(

What I'm currently reading:


I didn't get much reading done this week. I didn't finish the Theology book like I had wanted, but I did end up reading a few more chapters. I'm about a third of the way done with Full Disclosure - it's way different than I expected, but still really good.


I'm pretty much just starting all of these books. As you probably already know, The Messenger is for the December Book Discussion, so I want to get that read asap - the little bit I've read is really good. A Time to Love and The Irresistible Earl are for different Goodreads' team challenges and I look forward to diving into their stories as soon as I can. =)

 What I hope to read next week:

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Reviews posted this week:


  Current Giveaways!

Book Giveaway!

Enter to win a copy of one of Serena Miller's books! US only! Ends 12/4



Enter to win a copy of If We Survive by Andrew Klavan! US only. Ends 12/11

Giveaway Winner!



The winner is...

Christy!

*The winner has claimed their prize.

There you have it, that is what I accomplished (reading-wise) this week! What about you?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Review: Trinity by Ronie Kendig


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Trinity by Ronie Kendig
A Breed Apart: Book One
Barbour / 2012
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

About the book:

A year ago in Afghanistan, Green Beret Heath Daniel’s career was destroyed. Along with his faith. Now he and his military war dog, Trinity, train other dogs and their handlers. Though his passion is to be back in action, the medical discharge has forced Heath—and Trinity—to the sidelines. Military intelligence officer Darci Kintz is captured while secretly tracking the Taliban. Only one dog can handle the extreme conditions to save her. Trinity. Only one man can handle Trinity. Time is running out on the greatest—and most dangerous—mission of their lives.

My rating:
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My thoughts:

Trinity is only the second book I've read by Ronie Kendig (the first being Firethorn), but I can already tell I'm a fan of her work! Trinity had a lot of action, intrigue, and was just an overall great military novel!

I loved Heath's dog, Trinity! She was so well trained and there were some scenes where I wish I could have seen the things she did. :) The characters were nice - I really liked Heath, Peter, and Timbrel (I am really looking forward to her book, as I found her character very interesting and even funny at times). The characters seemed very realistic (especially Heath).

One of the only negatives I had with Trinity was how hard it was to keep track of the characters at first - there were so many characters introduced, so quickly. It did get easier, though, to remember who was who. Also, the story got a little confusing sometimes, but most of my questions got answered in the end.

Trinity had some surprises, intense action scenes, and even some romance! The entire story was really good and I loved the ending. I look forward to reading the next book, Talon, as soon as I can. I definitely recommend Trinity if you enjoy suspenseful reads with military aspects.

*I received this book for free for my review. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.*

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Q&A with Andrew Klavan + Book Giveaway!!


Find the book on: AmazonGoodreads, Thomas Nelson
About If We Survive:

They came on a mission of mercy, but now they’re in a fight for their lives.

High schooler Will Peterson and three friends journeyed to Central America to help rebuild a school. In a poor, secluded mountain village, they won the hearts of the local people with their energy and kindness.

But in one sudden moment, everything went horribly wrong. A revolution swept the country. Now, guns and terror are everywhere—and Americans are being targeted as the first to die.

Will and his friends have got to get out fast. But streets full of killers . . . hills patrolled by armies . . . and a jungle rife with danger stand between them and the border. Their one hope of escape lies with a veteran warrior who has lost his faith and may betray them at any moment. Their one dream is to reach freedom and safety and home.

If they can just survive.

Q&A with Andrew Klavan, 
Author of IF WE SURVIVE:

Q:           You’ve had many successes as a best-selling novelist and screenwriter.  What do you hope to bring to the young adult reading audience with books like this latest release?
A:            I like to tell stories that move like lightning—and I like to read stories like that too.  I love video games, love them, and it sometimes seems to me that younger people aren’t being offered books that are as fast and as thrilling and involving as those games. That’s too bad because when a high-octane story comes at you off the pages of a book, it’s different, it’s special—it’s almost magic, because it’s like it’s happening inside your head. You know the character’s thoughts. You get inside his imagination and his story gets into yours. No game or movie can do that—only a book. So I figured if I used the skills I learned in creating thrillers for adults, I’d be able to introduce younger people to a kind of exciting reading experience maybe they haven’t had before or haven’t had enough.

Q:           As a screenwriter, do you envision your fiction on the big screen someday? 
A:            Well, look, it was a real thrill to see movies made out of my books. I mean, to have Clint Eastwood star in True Crime, Michael Douglas star in Don’t Say A Word—how cool is that? And, I’m really excited that the Summit Entertainment folks, who have had a ton of success with the Twilight films and Hurt Locker want to put The Homelanders series on the silver screen. But I’ve always been a book guy first and foremost. I love books and I love reading—so I don’t really think about the movies when I write. Sometimes, when a book is finished, sure, I’ll imagine about how it might look as a movie or which movie star might be in it. But while I’m actually writing the book, I never think about it at all. I try to pour all my energy into making the story and characters come alive on the page. Someday, a director and producer and screenwriter and actors may come together to produce their version of the story. But if you want to hear it first-hand, straight from the imagination that created the story, you have to read the book.


Q:           What kind of feedback have you had from readers about your young adult work?
A:            The thing I’ve heard repeatedly that I’m really, really pleased about is: I could never get my son—nephew—grandson—whatever—to read, but he can’t put this book down. I’ve heard it again and again and every time I hear it, I go into a room by myself, close the door, pump my fists and say, “Yes!”  …and then come out straight-faced as if nothing had happened.

~

Andrew Klavan's website: http://www.andrewklavan.com/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/andrewklavan

Book giveaway!



Enter to win a copy of If We Survive by Andrew Klavan! US only.

Enter via the Rafflecopter below.
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Monday, November 26, 2012

Review: Beside Two River by Rita Gerlach



Beside Two River by Rita Gerlach
Abingdon Press / 2012
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

About the book:

A tale of love won and love lost, and the faith to find it again. 

From the banks of the Potomac to the misty moors of England, Darcy follows a path where the secrets of the past slowly rise to the surface in this dramatic saga that began in Before the Scarlet Dawn. She meets Ethan Brennan, an aspiring English horse breeder, who embraces her independent spirit and marvels at the simplicity of her faith. Ethan and Darcy fall in love, but are kept apart by a promise to another and a sworn oath to a dying woman whose long-hidden secret threatens Darcy’s and Ethan’s lives.

My rating:
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My thoughts:

After reading Before the Scarlet Dawn (book one) earlier this year, I was a little nervous about reading Beside Two Rivers. While I really enjoyed book one, the ending was SO sad and I didn't know if I could take a repeat of that in this book. While there were some sad moments, overall I was happy with Beside Two Rivers and found it enjoyable to read.

A negative I had with Beside Two Rivers was that sometimes it was hard to follow the story and I found myself getting slightly confused as to what was going on. I really liked the characters and was glad to finally see some closure happen in their lives. I also liked the forgiveness aspect of the story.

Overall I think Beside Two Rivers was a good read with some sad and happy moments. While I don't think it's entirely necessary to read the first book before this one, if you do you'll more fully understand what had happened years ago.

*I received this book for free for my review. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.*




Saturday, November 24, 2012

Review: If We Survive by Andrew Klavan


If We Survive by Andrew Klavan
Thomas Nelson / 2012
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

About the book:

They came on a mission of mercy, but now they’re in a fight for their lives.

High schooler Will Peterson and three friends journeyed to Central America to help rebuild a school. In a poor, secluded mountain village, they won the hearts of the local people with their energy and kindness.

But in one sudden moment, everything went horribly wrong. A revolution swept the country. Now, guns and terror are everywhere—and Americans are being targeted as the first to die.

Will and his friends have got to get out fast. But streets full of killers . . . hills patrolled by armies . . . and a jungle rife with danger stand between them and the border. Their one hope of escape lies with a veteran warrior who has lost his faith and may betray them at any moment. Their one dream is to reach freedom and safety and home.

If they can just survive.

My rating:
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My thoughts:

If We Survive is the third book I've read by Andrew Klavan (the first two being The Last Thing I Remember and The Long Way Home) and definitely my favorite so far! It was a thrilling ride and held my attention throughout!

I loved how realistic the characters were - one in particular was very dramatic and got upset a lot (to the point of being annoying), but given the circumstances, I understood why she'd be that way. My favorite character was definitely Palmer! I just loved so much about him (his courage, how he acted, things he said, etc.).

The story was great and I don't think there was ever a time I was bored while reading If We Survive... there was just so much action!

If We Survive was a wonderful read that I loved! I think teens (and adults!) who like action books with some pulse-pounding moments will enjoy this book. I definitely recommend it. I look forward to reading more of Andrew Klavan's books in the future.

*I borrowed a print copy of this book from the library; I also received a complimentary eBook copy via Netgalley for my review. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.*


Friday, November 23, 2012

Weekend Wrap-Up & Giveaway Winner!!


Weekend Wrap-up is where I share what I read this past week, am currently reading, and hope to read this coming week, and (when applicable) the current giveaways/giveaway winners. Occasionally I'll post some other stuff as well.

Feel free to join along and post your own Weekend Wrap-up on your blog/site (if you do, please leave the link in a comment so I can stop by) or, in a comment, share what you've accomplished (reading-wise) this past week. :)

 What I've read this week:

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So happy I was able to finish three books this week! I think I'm officially over my reading slump! Yay! :)

What I'm currently reading:


About halfway done with Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day - I hope to finish it this coming week :) I'm not that far in Beside Two Rivers... I hope I like it!

 What I hope to read next week:

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I hope to read at least three of those this week. :)

Reviews posted this week:


  Current Giveaways!



Enter to win a copy of A Promise to Protect by Liz Johnson!! US and Canada! Ends 11/27!

Book Giveaway!

Enter to win a copy of one of Serena Miller's books! US only! Ends 12/4

Giveaway Winner!



The winner is...

Caitlyn!*

*Winner has claimed her prize.

There you have it, that is what I accomplished (reading-wise) this week! What about you? Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Review: The Widow of Saunders Creek by Tracey Bateman



The Widow of Saunders Creek by Tracey Bateman
WaterBrook Press / 2012
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads

About the book:

A grief that knows no boundary. 
A love without any limit. 
A need that doesn’t end at death. 

Corrie Saunders grew up in a life of privilege. But she gave it all up for Jarrod, her Army husband, a man she knew was a hero when she vowed to spend her life with him. She just didn’t expect her hero to sacrifice his life taking on an Iraqi suicide bomber. 

Six months after Jarrod’s death, Corrie retreats to the family home her husband inherited deep in the Missouri Ozarks. She doesn’t know how to live without Jarrod—she doesn’t want to. By moving to Saunders Creek and living in a house beloved by him, she hopes that somehow her Jarrod will come back to her.

Something about the house suggests maybe he has. Corrie begins to wonder if she can feel Jarrod’s presence. 

Jarrod’s cousin Eli is helping Corrie with the house’s restoration and he knows that his dead cousin is not what Corrie senses. Eli, as a believing man and at odds with his mystically-oriented family members, thinks friendly visits from beyond are hogwash. But he takes spirits with dark intentions seriously. Can he convince Corrie that letting go of Jarrod will lead to finding her footing again— and to the One she can truly put her faith into?

My rating:
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My thoughts:

The Widow of Saunders Creek was a very interesting read and different than most other books I've read - I really liked it! The characters were great and I think my favorite was Eli, although I also really liked Corrie and Lola.

The story was good and I liked how it dealt with ghosts: whether or not they are real, and if there is a "presence" in a house, what is it - a demon or departed soul? All of that made for an intriguing read! :)

The ending to The Widow of Saunders Creek was a little abrupt/rushed (in my opinion), but it was still a nice ending... even though I would have preferred a few more details about certain things.

The Widow of Saunders Creek had suspense, romance, and even some humor at times. I really enjoyed the book and am kind of hoping for a sequel. If you like suspenseful reads dealing with the paranormal, then I think you'd enjoy The Widow of Saunders Creek! I recommend it. :)

*I received a complimentary ARC copy of this book for my review. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.*



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Check out an excerpt from The Widow of Saunders Creek! The Widow of Saunders Creek; A Novel
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