Review: The Last Ride by:Susan K. Marlow

The Last Ride (Circle C Milestones #3)

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Andi’s newest adventure may be more than she can handle–even with her family’s help
Andrea Carter is turning sweet 16 and life could not be better. She’s about to finish school, her sister Melinda is getting married, and her older brother Justin has a new baby to spoil. There will be plenty of time to work with the colt of her treasured palomino horse, Taffy, and best of all, Andi will finally get to work full-time for the ranch she loves.
There’s just one problem: a city-slicker cousin named Daniel. Left there by his father, with a cryptic warning that New York City life has done damage to the young man’s character, Daniel wants nothing to do with the ranch. He ignores Andi’s lessons, walks away from responsibility, wrecks valuable equipment, and even runs away to San Francisco.
The Carter family is in a frenzy trying to keep Daniel under control. When Andi discovers a horrifying secret about him, he forces her to stay silent. But all that changes when Daniel’s actions put lives in danger. Andi’s anger over her loss threatens to destroy not only Andi but her entire Circle C world. Can anyone break through the wall around Andi’s bitter heart and help her find healing?
Loyal long-time readers of Susan Marlow’s historical fiction will line up for an older Andi’s newest adventure, and her discovery of how powerful love can be.
My Review:
 Andi is taking life by the horns. She is 16 and carefree. Her family is living life and living it to the hilt and she is doing the same. There are so many things in her life right now to be proud of and happy about and she is. Taffy is a treasure to her. To Andi Taffy is more than her horse or a pet—she loves this four legged creature. 
 Andi is working full time at a ranch so she will be able to be around horse and this is something that delights her. She meets Daniel and soon learns that she may have something to be afraid of when it comes to him.
A perfect book for teen girls. a little romance mixed with a teaspoon of drama. I felt in love with Andi and her sweet personality from the reading of the first page. A beautiful addition to the series!
**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Litfuse Review: Finding God in the Ruins by:Matt Bays

Finding God in the Ruins: How God Redeems Pain

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When the reality of your pain doesn’t line up with what you’ve been taught in church, then what? While many abandon their faith or embrace hopelessness, it is possible to discover the God who heals your heart in the midst of the pain.
Matt Bays has been where you are. His unforgettable stories of loss and healing will usher you into a life where gratitude overpowers anger, hope overcomes despair, and hunger for God replaces indifference to God. With a fresh and original writing style, Bays demonstrates that true redemption is far more powerful than the temporary fixes of sanitized Christianity.
My Review:
 Matt Bays, brings us a sense of hope and renewal. A place where when you need encouragement you can find it because he will show you where God showed up in people’s lives and they accepted the hope He offered. 
 Too many times in this world of sin we will find things that have happened to people and be so angry with it that it tears at our souls. We question God through the tears and wonder how He could ever let this be. God in His infinite wisdom lets us be and lets us cry and shout and otherwise be angry. But I don’t think He wants us to stay there for very long.
 A lot of the situations that people have to go through or endure is part of the growing in Christ process. These things are something that is suppose to bridge the gap between the individual and the Father. What is so incredibly sad is, is that a lot of times many of these individuals fail to see it and because of this they can suffer disastrous effects as a result.
 The author took a group of individuals and their stories of recovery in Christ and changed the paradox a bit in order for the rest of us to live in a freedom that maybe we only dream about. 
**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Review: The Jazz Files by:Fiona Veitch Smith

The Jazz Files

About the Book:

Introducing Poppy Denby, a young journalist in London during the Roaring Twenties, investigating crime in the highest social circles!
In 1920, twenty-two year old Poppy Denby moves from Northumberland to live with her paraplegic aunt in London. Aunt Dot, a suffragette who was injured in battles with the police in 1910, is a feisty and well-connected lady.
Poppy has always dreamed of being a journalist, and quickly lands a position as an editorial assistant at the Daily Globe. Then one of the paper’s writers, Bert Isaacs, dies suddenly–and messily. Poppy and her attractive co-worker, photographer Daniel Rokeby begin to wonder if it wasn’t a natural death, but murder.
After she writes a sensational exposé, The Globe’s editor invites her to dig deeper. Poppy starts sifting through the dead man’s files and unearths a major mystery which takes her to France–and into deadly danger.
My Review:
 Okay, first of all loved this book! It is set in the 1920’s, what is not to love?! And to top it all off it is set in London. Loved it! With it being the first of the series, I was eager to get started. Poppy lives with her handicapped Aunt Dot. Aunt Dot has cheered Poppy on to go for the best job around and of course it’s her dream job. so she is able to get on with the Daily Globe as an assistant. The job has led Poppy to much more than she has bargained for I’m afraid. especially when she starts to unearth a possible murder that everyone suspected was natural causes.
 The author has created a great start to her series of Poppy Denby Investigates and I’m sure if she keeps writing like this, her series is going to be a hit. I loved the setting the best and the way that Poppy investigates is a treasure. Can’t wait for the nest one!
**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Litfuse Review: Tying the Knot by:Rob Green

About the Book: medianet_width=’300′; medianet_height= ‘250’; medianet_crid=’178441427′;

Tying the Knot offers soon-to-be-married couples a practical vision of Christ-centered marriage that is realistic, hopeful, and actionable. This nine-session study guides couples through issues like conflict, expectations, communication, finances, and intimacy, showing how each can be successfully resolved with Christ at the center of the marriage.
Knowing the stresses and needs of a couple in their season of engagement, Green has helpfully designed the study to require a manageable (and healthy) 60 minutes of at-home work per session, with questions and exercises to build communication and intimacy at the end of each chapter. Tying the Knot also includes an appendix for mentors, making it easy for a married couple, lay leader, or counselor to lead an engaged couple through the book.
My Review:
 I like to think of myself as a pro at this marriage thing but the truth is, that after 21 years of marriage I learn something new about my better half each day. It is never effortless! And I think that is a lie straight from the devil himself. I hope no one ever gets married and decides well the hard part is over because that is simply not true, at all. It is something that you will have to work on for the rest of your life.
 Tying the Knot by:Rob Green is a great way to sharpen up your skills at this marriage thing and learn to apply some of it to an already strong marriage or to apply it to one you would like to strengthen. Based entirely on scripture the author talks about the Biblically based role of each individual according to God’s word. 
 My husband and I say that our marriage is a marriage of 3 and the author definitely plays on that idea and he thoroughly discusses the real meaning of love on God’s terms. I loved the book! It is a quick read and it is a really good guide for nurturing a good Biblically based marriage!
**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Review: Saints & Sailors by:Pam Rhodes

Saints and Sailors (The Dunbridge Chronicles, Book #4)

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Three groups of people come together for a more-or-less godly cruise around the British Isles: to Lindisfarne, the Loch Ness Monster Museum, Iona and Mull, Dublin and the Scilly Isles. There are familiar faces from St Stephens, Dunbridge; some new folk from Neil’s new parish in Derbyshire; and the slightly long-suffering crew, not least her skipper.
My Review:
 Pam Rhodes has done it again. She has added another delightful tale to The Dunbridge Chronicles series. The author takes us along on this cruise and introduces us to many well known tourist attractions. Neil is with us, as well this go around with some fresh, friendly faces. You will be taken on a joy ride you didn’t quite expect when you read Saints & Sailors.

 This was somewhat of a light hearted read with a few exciting points dropped in for good measure. I like the well rounded characters and I really liked checking in with everyone once again in this lovely addition to the series. I can’t wait to see what the author will do next with this series of great stories.

**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Review: Messed Up Men of the Bible by:Samples/Samples

Messed Up Men of the Bible

About the Book: medianet_width=’300′; medianet_height= ‘250’; medianet_crid=’178441427′;

From schlubby sitcom heroes to mommy blogs to online articles, there is a broad cultural perception that men constantly mess up and women must fight an uphill battle to fix them. Men are a burden, constant works-in-progress, pushed toward perfection but always falling short. This book asks a revolutionary question: What if these messed-up men are actually a mighty tool for God?
Tina and Dave Samples remind us that the Bible is filled with a cast of messed-up men–men who struggled and fell, and yet were used by God to accomplish His purposes. In fact, God has consistently chosen imperfect “clay pots” in which to place His light.
David was a poor father. Peter had problems with integrity. Moses had anger issues, Gideon struggled with fear, and Elijah suffered from depression–the list goes on. “Messed Up Men of the Bible” offers encounters with these ancient men who faced the same emotions and questions that contemporary men face, in order to reveal fresh spiritual insights and hope for modern relationships. Through personal stories, practical advice, and useful exercises, Tina and Dave provide encouragement and hope for women dealing with the messed-up men in their own lives.
My Review:
 What a great read!

 An encouraging read for the women that are involved with messed up men. The authors included some really great examples to learn from, as well. So the authors assist us in trying to find our way out of the darkness or out of the places we hide to stay away from and not confront the men in our lives. It is hard trying to move beyond the fear. I know because I’m working through that right now with my husband. Specifically other relationships in my life that I deemed insignificant. Not because of my lack of investing but because of the lack of others not investing. I finally decided it was time to move on and stop investing. I actually felt a huge wait life off of me when I allowed myself to do this.

 I have to trust God in every aspect of my life even my relationships. And even though some of those seem pretty harmless they can actually be very damaging to yourself and your own spirituality. It is not our place to fix the men in our lives, it is God’s and many times He will use that man in your life to fix you. God’s ways are very multi-faceted. He always has many things going on at once and He has many agendas as well with each person.

 Messed Up Men of the Bible is a great book with many good examples. The authors were very well researched in their findings and I learned a lot from the book.

**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Review: The Body Under the Bridge by:Paul McCusker

The Body Under the Bridge (Father Gilbert Mystery #1)

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A former Scotland Yard detective, Father Gilbert knows about death. But, now a priest of a modest Anglican church in the small town of Hailsham, he didn’t expect it to show up like this–in the suicide of a man who threw himself off the church tower, and in the discovery of a two-hundred-year-old body beneath an ancient bridge.
The deaths are linked. The mummified corpse under the bridge, a murder victim, reignites a centuries-old battle between two local families–the Todds and the aristocratic Hayshams. Then both David Todd and Lord Haysham begin to act strangely, fearful for reasons they won’t explain.
When Lord Haysham is murdered, David Todd is the prime suspect. But Todd is maniacal, claiming great forces of evil are at work. An entire history of violence and depravity begins to emerge, interweaving the history of several local families with a secret occult society that engages in Black Masses. Has the Society emerged again?
My Review:
 A mystery that has a murder or two that are linked together. Father Gilbert soon comes across the two bodies and remembers that there are two families involved. The two families are in a feud that has lasted many centuries now this–it isn’t looking so great right now. This is a murder mystery of all murder mysteries. It takes you back in time and with some history there, as well. It takes you through creepy findings as well as science that becomes involved through DNA. It is very in our time period but also takes you back through how these families become estranged from one another. 
 It’s not too far into the story that you find that Father Gilbert has his own demons to face. The plot has many twists and turns and the plot thickens as it goes along. There is a touch of demonic forces involved which makes this story even scarier, I feel. A very involved story perfect for a dark dreary night in. The author did a good job of scaring me with this one. This is number one in the Father Gilbert Mysteries. A great start!
**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Litfuse Review: Kissed By a Cowboy by:Debra Clopton

Kissed by a Cowboy (Four of Hearts Ranch #3)

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Cassidy was looking for a home and a place to belong . . . not for a cowboy to steal her heart.
Having lived through her parents’ endless string of “matrimonial bliss gone wrong,” Cassidy Starr knows when the odds are not in her favor. Divorced and humiliated, her faith on rocky ground, Cassidy is through with love. She’s been bucked off that horse far too many times. Instead, she returns to Wishing Springs, Texas, and the rundown farm she’s inherited from her great aunt Roxie. She’ll reopen the strawberry farm and a bed & breakfast and follow in her aunt’s footsteps, remaining forever-independent, happy . . . and single.
Rancher Jarrod Monahan’s hands are full running the ranch, looking after his ailing grandfather, and chasing down a group of rustlers on the loose. He’s pushed his longing for a family to the bottom of his list of priorities. Besides, he was in love once but ran scared and lost his shot at happiness. But suddenly, the biggest regret of his life has moved in next door with a wounded heart, determined to become a spinster . . . and that’s a challenge that Jarrod can’t pass up.
Jarrod sets his mind to breaking down the walls around Cassidy’s stubborn heart. How can he show her that a cowboy’s kiss lasts forever?  For the good folks of Wishing Springs, falling in love has never been so much fun to witness.
My Review:
 Cassidy Starr never wanted to end up like her parents. But after marrying a guy she believed actually cared for her and soon divorcing him do to his continuous infidelity, she finds that she may be more like her parents than she really knew. She decides to head back to Wishing Springs, Texas to start over and begin again, and hopefully never have to deal with a guy breaking her heart again. But she soon discovers that things may not go according to her plans, especially when her first love is back on her door step.

Rancher Jarrod Monahan had it bad for Cassidy Starr back when they were kids and that’s something that has never changed in him all these years. At thirty-four, one would expect him to be married and have kids, but that’s not the case with Jarrod. His life if over-flowing with the ranch to run, his grandfather to help care for, and now rustlers to find. He just doesn’t have time for no woman, that is until he learns that Cassidy has moved back in town and is as single as ever.

Jarrod sets his sights on changing her mind on the whole single forever thing going on in her head. If only Cassidy could see, her world would be better if she would just take a chance.

Kissed by a Cowboy is book three in the Four of Hearts Ranch series. This book was the last book in this series. But it was still a wonderful addition. I just love Debra Clopton’s books and this book was just as awesome as all her others. I hope to read many more of her books.

**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Litfuse Review: Come Empty: Pour Out Life’s Hurts and Receive God’s Healing Love by:Saundra Dalton-Smith

Come Empty: Pour Out Life's Hurts and Receive God's Healing Love

About the Book: medianet_width=’300′; medianet_height= ‘250’; medianet_crid=’178441427′;

When a water vessel is filled with dirt and stones, it cannot be used to quench a thirst. But, when this vessel is emptied, there is opportunity to fill it until it overflows with fresh, cool, life-giving water. Water that quenches. Refreshes. Soothes. 
Our souls are the same: filled with fear, doubt, and disappointment. Running over with unanswered prayers and lingering questions. When we empty the mess of our lives in the presence of God, we’re offered an invitation to come. An invitation that allows us to come empty – so that we can be filled until we overflow.
Come Empty – Pour out Life’s Hurts and Receive God’s Healing Love guides you through fifty days of experiencing the fullness of God’s love and His ability to overcome life’s hurts. Each day, you will receive assurance of God’s presence in your difficult situations. Each devotion gives new vision and perspective when you’re hindered by emotional blind spots, and leads you to experience God’s peace and wholeness. When His invitation is accepted, He will set your captive mind and heart free to live fully by His grace. The question is not if you will get an invitation. The question is will you come?
My Review:
 What a great book to start the new year, fresh and new. It is more like refreshed and renewed. The only way for God to fill you up is if you are completely empty of “self”. Come Empty: Pour Out Life’s Hurts and Receive God’s Healing is a good way to learn just what the process is all about. It is an in depth Bible devotional that causes you to deeply reflect on what got you to this place and what is keeping you from moving on and digging deeper. 
  Come Empty: Pour Out Life’s Hurts and Receive God’s Healing is a devotional that has 80 days worth of digging deeper into the whole of self that got you to this spot in the first place and gives you the freedom that you are searching for. God is waiting for us to make that first, fresh move of faith that will be the bridge to Him as well as the bridge to our freedom from circumstances and bondage.
 This book is a great way to find your way through the clutter and chaos to that brilliant landscape of beauty that you long and yearn to find!
**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.

Review: Priceless Weddings for Under $5000 (revised edition) by:Kathlenn Kennedy

Priceless Weddings for Under $5,000 (Revised Edition)
About the Book:
Become your own budget wedding planner with this classic book—fully revised and expanded to include advice on personalizing your event and using online planning tools

Designing a wedding that is priceless and perfect for you has never been easier. No matter how many guests you hope to invite or what kind of setting you choose, you don’t have to take on big debts to achieve your big day.

For more than a decade, Priceless Weddings for Under $5,000 has helped couples craft unique and meaningful celebrations while saving money on every aspect—even the high-ticket items. Completely revised, updated, and expanded with more than 25% new material, this edition reveals the secrets and resources for planning a wedding like a pro.  You’ll learn how to make every detail and every dollar count with:

·         All-new chapters on envisioning your ideal event as well as using online resources and apps to find the most creative options and the best deals
·         A questionnaire to help you decide—as a couple—on your top priorities for the day
·         Strategies for making—and keeping to—a budget
·         Dozens of unexpected ideas for booking a low-cost venue
·         Tactics for negotiating with caterers, florists, musicians, and photographers
·         Advice on which elements you can DIY to save thousands (without risking your sanity)
·         Menu plans, recipes, and many other low-cost alternatives for the food and drinks
·         Tips for finding stylish attire at a fraction of the cost
·         Real-life couples’ wedding stories, including complete budget breakdowns

Priceless Weddings for Under $5,000 proves you can create a celebration that everyone remembers forever, and still end up with plenty of money for the happy future.

My Review:
 Your wedding will be one of the most important days of your life. The task of creating a cheap wedding without it looking cheap can be a daunting task to say the least. There are not many things these days that are affordable or cheap at all and a wedding forget about it. But Kathleen Kennedy has updated and revised her book on  very affordable weddings in her book, Priceless Weddings for Under $5,000.

 The author gives you tons of advice and tips along with cost run downs on different things and she has included websites and wedding bloggers you should check out, as well. The author has provided quite a gem in this book. It will become known as a wedding bible because there is so much helpful advice in it. A bride’s best friend!

**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from the author.