Friday, September 30, 2011

Mini Review and blog tour - Found in Translation

Found in Translation by Roger Bruner
Release Date: January 1, 2011
Publisher: Barbour Books
Genre: Christian Contemporary Fiction
Series: Altered Hearts #1
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon

When Kim Hartlinger—eighteen and spoiled—arrives on a mission trip to Mexico and discovers, to her chagrin, that she’ll be doing construction in a remote village without plumbing and electricity, rather than evangelism in a medium-sized town with a fast food joint . . she has only two choices. “Rough it” (which isn’t exactly what Kim had in mind when she signed up for this trip) or turn around and head home.
Will Kim be able to touch the villagers’ hearts with the Gospel? Or will her time in Mexico be up before she gets the chance?
This book pulled me in immediately. The story is foreworded by Kristi Rae Bruner, Roger's daughter. This story is based on her experience on a similar missions trip, and her life-changing experience. With her knowledge, Roger wrote this story.

At first Kim seems like a typical spoiled teenager - thinking of no one but herself. However, she has a genuine Christian heart and wants to help despite the change in circumstances. She makes the best of her situation by frequently laughing at herself, and bonding with Aleesha, an African-American girl that has no issues with Kim's attitude.

Kim hits many snags along the way but learns from each of them and grows in her Christian faith. This story is inspiring to all and helps the reader to put themself into another's shoes. A must-read!

This book was received free for review from the author. I was not required to give a positive review, simply an honest one.

Team Novel Teen is a group of bloggers dedicated to spreading the word about clean teen fiction. Check out other posts about Found in Translation by Roger Bruner by clicking on the links below, and check out for more information about Team Novel Teen.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Review - The Raie'Chaelia

The Raie'Chaelia by Melissa Douthit

Release Date: May 27, 2011
Publisher: Lucky Bat Books
Genre: Fantasy
Series: The Raie'Chaelia #1
Format: eBook
Buy It: Amazon
When Chalice sets off for Branbury in the middle of the night with her grandfather's instructions, she has no idea of the dangers that await her. The King's men have destroyed her home village of Canton and she is suddenly thrown into a Terravailian world that she does not know. Lost and alone, she is hard pressed to evade the iron grasp of the madman who rules the land. With the help of a friendly Chinuk, an old man, and a book that she discovers along the way, not only does she find true friends and true love, but she also finds her true self and what it means to be the Raie'Chaelia.
When I first started this book I was convinced I would not be able to finish it and give it a fair review. For me, the prologue was slow-going and didn't really grab my attention. Once I got into Chapter 1 and read about Chalice, and I was hooked.

The books starts with her on the run, and continues fast-paced from there. She meets many people that are crucial to both her journey and the story at large, and learns shocking truths about herself and her family.

I did not realize this was a trilogy, so I was devastated by the huge cliff hanger this book leaves. Book 2 doesn't release until next month, and I'm so ready to read it! There are currently two prequels released, both for free on Smashwords here and here.

I received this book free for review for a blog tour promoting the author. I was not required to give a positive review, simply an honest one.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Mini Review and Blog Tour - A Lancaster County Christmas

A Lancaster County Christmas by Suzanne Woods Fisher
Release Date: September 1, 2011
Publisher: Revell
Genre: Amish Fiction
Pages: 208
Format: Hardback
Buy It: Amazon
Jaime and C. J. Fitzpatrick began their married life as most couples do--in love and looking forward to a bright future together. But four years later they've drifted apart and are almost ready to call it quits.

Mattie Riehl was hoping to give her husband Sol the Christmas gift they have both longed for--news that a baby was on the way. But as usual, she is disappointed. The holidays bring an acute awareness to Mattie that her dream of a big family isn't likely to become a reality.

Then a winter storm raging outside blows the Fitzpatricks into the Riehl home--and into a much slower pace of life. Can these two couples from different worlds help each other understand the true meaning of love this Christmas?

With her trademark plot twists and attention to detail, Suzanne Woods Fisher offers readers a beautiful Christmas story of love, forgiveness, and what truly matters in life.
This short book touched me from the start. The two families are so different, but they come together so quickly. They need each other, as different each their lives might be. Their endearing interactions made me appreciate families and Christmastime so much more! Definitely a beautiful Amish read.

I received this book free for review through a LitFuse blog tour. I was not required to give a positive review, simply an honest one.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

IMM: 9/25/11

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful Kristi at The Story Siren! We share books we received this week, whether we bought them, got them in the mail or checked them out from the library.

For Review:
Reclaiming Lily by Patti Lacy
Love on the Line by Deeanne Gist
Along Wooded Paths by Tricia Goyer
Diary of a Teenage Girl: Becoming Me (Caitlin #1) by Melody Carlson

Sister Red audiobook, signed Sisters Red poster and "fail invite" (Thanks Jackson Pearce!)

Left notebook (Thanks Jenna!)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Mini Review and Blog Tour - The Key of Kilenya

The Key of Kilenya by Andrea Pearson
Release Date: July 28, 2011
Publisher: CreateSpace
Genre: Fantasy
Series: The Key of Kilenya #1
Pages: 306
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
When two vicious wolves chase fourteen-year-old Jacob Clark down a path from our world into another, his life is forever changed. He has no idea they have been sent by the Lorkon—evil, immortal beings who are jealous of powers he doesn’t know he possesses—powers they desire to control. The inhabitants of the new world desperately need Jacob's help in recovering a magical key that was stolen by the Lorkon and is somehow linked to him. If he helps them, his life will be at risk. But if he chooses not to help them, both our world and theirs will be in danger. The Lorkon will stop at nothing to unleash the power of the key—and Jacob's special abilities.
I love fantasy books, and this one was no exception! I loved the unique worlds and creatures and they images they painted in my mind. While the general plot line is typical of most fantasy novels, I still liked the little pieces Andrea puts in to make it unique. I'm waiting for the next one!

I received this book free for review for a blog tour. I was not required to write a positive review, simply an honest one.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Mini Review - Go Big

Go Big by Cory Cotton
Release Date: August 25, 2011
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
Genre: Christian non-fiction
Pages: 224
Format: Hardcover
Buy It: Amazon
It began with a free sandwich, a simple camera, and twenty “I can do better than you” shots. From that afternoon of friendly competition, six college guys created Dude Perfect, a YouTube group that specializes in the craziest basketball shots you can imagine. Within months, the guys went from shooting backyard trick shots to starring in GMC truck commercials and standing on an L.A. Red Carpet. Listed by Advertising Age as one of YouTube’s Hottest Brands, Dude Perfect’s videos have reached and inspired hundreds of millions with one contagious message—the very phrase they championed from day one—Go Big. By leveraging the connected world, Dude Perfect’s dream became a reality, and now, they want the same for you. Written by one of the dudes himself, Go Big tells their story and unveils their secret: five practical principles for taking your passions, skills, and dreams to the next level. Are you ready to Go Big?
This book was not as interesting as I initially imagined it would be. Basically the idea is to focus on your dreams, no matter how big they are, and stick to them. While I agree with the idea, I don't think they needed to write an entire book about it. Feel free to try it out and see if you like it better than I did!

I received this book free for review from Tyndale's Book Blogger program. I was not required to post a positive review, simply an honest one.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Mini Review and Blog Tour - Fairer Than Morning

Fairer Than Morning by Rosslyn Elliot
Release Date: May 10, 2011
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Pages: 400
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
Ann dreams of a marriage proposal from her poetic suitor, Eli-until Will Hanby shows her that nobility is more than fine words.
On a small farm in 19th-century Ohio, young Ann Miller is pursued by the gallant Eli Bowen, son of a prominent family. Eli is the suitor of Ann's dreams. Like her, he enjoys poetry and beautiful things and soon, he will move to the city to become a doctor.
Ann travels to Pittsburgh, accompanying her father on business. There she meets Will Hanby, a saddle-maker's apprentice. Will has spent years eking out an existence under a cruel master and his spirit is nearly broken. But Ann's compassion lights a long-dark part of his soul. Through his encounters with Ann's father, a master saddler, Will discovers new hope and courage in the midst of tremendous adversity.
When the Millers must return to Ohio and their ministry there, Will resolves to find them, at any cost. If Will can make it back to Ann, will she be waiting?
I was actually quite surprised how much I enjoyed the historical aspects of this book, since I typically don't like historical novels. Some of the things that happened were shocking to me. I didn't know things like that could actually happen!

One thing I didn't like was the attempt at the love triangle. To me, it was sloppily done and honestly not that exciting. However, this was definitely a cute romance and worth a try!

I received this book free from review from a LitFuse blog tour. I was not required to post a positive review, simply an honest one.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

IMM: 9/18/11

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful Kristi at The Story Siren! We share books we received this week, whether we bought them, got them in the mail or checked them out from the library.
For Review:
The Harvest of Grace by Cindy Woodsmall
Deeply Devoted by Maggie Brendan
Go Big by Cory Cotton

Forever ARC by Maggie Stiefvater (Thanks Jeremy!)
Forever (finished copy) by Maggie Stiefvater and keychain (Thanks Natalie!)
Cursebusters by Julie Smith

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

100 YA Books

This list has been on a couple on blogs I read, so I figured I would join in!

My total: 8/100 and 34 Books
  1. Alex Finn – Beastly
  2. Alice Sebold – The Lovely Bones
  3. Ally Carter – Gallagher Girls (1, 2, 3, 4)
  4. Ally Condie – Matched
  5. Alyson Noel – The Immortals (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
  6. Anastasia Hopcus – Shadow Hills
  7. Angie Sage – Septimus Heap (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
  8. Ann Brashares – The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (1, 2, 3, 4)
  9. Anna Godbersen – Luxe (1, 2, 3, 4)
  10. Anthony Horowitz – Alex Rider (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)
  11. Aprilynne Pike – Wings (1, 2, 3)
  12. Becca Fitzpatrick – Hush, Hush (1, 2)
  13. Brandon Mull – Fablehaven (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  14. Brian Selznick – The Invention of Hugo Cabret
  15. Cassandra Clare – The Mortal Instruments (1, 2, 3, 4)
  16. Carrie Jones – Need (1, 2, 3)
  17. Carrie Ryan – The Forest of Hands and Teeth (1, 2, 3, 4)
  18. Christopher Paolini – Inheritance (1, 2, 3, 4)
  19. Cinda Williams Chima – The Heir Chronicles (1, 2, 3)
  20. Colleen Houck – Tigers Saga (1, 2)
  21. Cornelia Funke – Inkheart (1, 2, 3)
  22. Ellen Hopkins – Impulse
  23. Eoin Colfer – Artemis Fowl (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
  24. Faraaz Kazi – Truly, Madly, Deeply
  25. Frank Beddor – The Looking Glass Wars (1, 2, 3)
  26. Gabrielle Zevin – Elsewhere
  27. Gail Carson Levine – Fairest
  28. Holly Black – Tithe (1, 2, 3)
  29. J.K. Rowling – Harry Potter (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
  30. James Dashner – The Maze Runner (1, 2)
  31. James Patterson – Maximum Ride (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
  32. Jay Asher – Thirteen Reasons Why
  33. Jeanne DuPrau – Books of Ember (1, 2, 3, 4)
  34. Jeff Kinney – Diary of a Wimpy Kid (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
  35. John Boyne – The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
  36. John Green – An Abundance of Katherines
  37. John Green – Looking for Alaska
  38. John Green – Paper Towns
  39. Jonathan Stroud – Bartimaeus (1, 2, 3, 4)
  40. Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl – Caster Chronicles (1, 2)
  41. Kelley Armstrong – Darkest Powers (1, 2, 3)
  42. Kristin Cashore – The Seven Kingdoms (1, 2)
  43. Lauren Kate – Fallen (1, 2, 3)
  44. Lemony Snicket – Series of Unfortunate Events (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13)
  45. Libba Bray – Gemma Doyle (1, 2, 3)
  46. Lisa McMann – Dream Catcher (1, 2, 3)
  47. Louise Rennison – Confessions of Georgia Nicolson (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
  48. M.T. Anderson – Feed
  49. Maggie Stiefvater – The Wolves of Mercy Falls (1, 2, 3)
  50. Margaret Peterson Haddix – Shadow Children (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
  51. Maria V. Snyder – Study (1, 2, 3)
  52. Markus Zusak – The Book Thief
  53. Markus Zusak – I am the Messenger
  54. Mark Haddon – The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
  55. Mary Ting – Crossroads
  56. Maureen Johnson – Little Blue Envelope (1, 2)
  57. Meg Cabot – All-American Girl (1, 2)
  58. Meg Cabot – The Mediator (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
  59. Meg Cabot – The Princess Diaries (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
  60. Meg Rosoff – How I Live Now
  61. Megan McCafferty – Jessica Darling (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  62. Megan Whalen Turner – The Queen’s Thief (1, 2, 3, 4)
  63. Melina Marchetta – On the Jellicoe Road
  64. Melissa de la Cruz – Blue Bloods (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  65. Melissa Marr – Wicked Lovely (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  66. Michael Grant – Gone (1, 2, 3, 4)
  67. Nancy Farmer – The House of the Scorpion
  68. Neal Shusterman – Unwind
  69. Neil Gaiman – Coraline
  70. Neil Gaiman – Stardust
  71. Neil Gaiman – The Graveyard Book
  72. P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast – House of Night (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)
  73. Philip Pullman – His Dark Materials (1, 2, 3)
  74. Rachel Caine – The Morganville Vampires (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10)
  75. Rachel Cohn & David Levithan – Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist
  76. Richelle Mead – Vampire Academy (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
  77. Rick Riordan – Percy Jackson and the Olympians (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  78. Rom LcO’Feer – Somewhere Carnal Over 40 Winks
  79. S.L. Naeole – Grace (1, 2, 3, 4)
  80. Sabrina Bryan & Julia DeVillers – Princess of Gossip
  81. Sarah Dessen – Along for the Ride
  82. Sarah Dessen – Lock and Key
  83. Sarah Dessen – The Truth about Forever
  84. Sara Shepard – Pretty Little Liars (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)
  85. Scott Westerfeld – Leviathan (1, 2)
  86. Scott Westerfeld – Uglies (1, 2, 3)
  87. Shannon Hale – Books of a Thousand Days
  88. Shannon Hale – Princess Academy
  89. Shannon Hale – The Books of Bayern (1, 2, 3, 4)
  90. Sherman Alexie & Ellen Forney – The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
  91. Simone Elkeles – Perfect Chemistry (1, 2, 3)
  92. Stephenie Meyer – The Host
  93. Stephenie Meyer – Twilight Saga (1, 2, 3, 4)
  94. Sue Monk Kidd – The Secret Life of Bees
  95. Susan Beth Pfeffer – Last Survivors (1, 2, 3)
  96. Suzanne Collins – Hunger Games (1, 2, 3)
  97. Suzanne Collins – Underland Chronicles (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  98. Terry Pratchett – Tiffany Aching (1, 2, 3, 4)
  99. Tonya Hurley – Ghost Girl (1, 2, 3)
  100. Wendelin Van Draanen – Flipped
Hahaha... sad. But if you couldn't tell, I am definitely a series kind of reader :) A bunch of these I already own or are on my TBR list, so maybe I'll try updating this at the end of every year!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

BBAW Interview Swap!

It's Book Blogger Appreciation Week! To celebrate, I'm taking part in the book blogger interview swap. My partner is Tasha from Truth, Beauty, Freedom and Books. I'm not gonna waste any time, so here we go!

1) Tell me about yourself! Are you married? Have kids? Pets? I do have a pet, a dog named Pearl you can see on Schnauzer Saturdays. Other than that, I'm a woman of mystery. Ha! Not really. I live in Colorado, I teach classes online but am constantly searching for another job, and I like spending time outdoors. Reading.

2) When did you start book blogging? It was so long ago I don't remember. Fortunately, my blog tells me it was 2009. Good times.

3) What are your preferred genres for reading? I'm pretty eclectic; it would be easier to say what genres I don't like to read. I've been on something of a YA and m/m romance kick lately, which now that I think about it are two really odd genres to pair together. I also like romances, mysteries, sci-fi, fantansy, suspense, manga, non-fiction, anything with vampires or angels, historical fiction, classics... just about anything other than chick lit. Chick lit depresses me.

4) Tell me something about yourself no one else knows. I would, but then I'd have to erase your hard drive. Haha! Okay, the bodies are buried... wait. Never mind.

5) What are some of your favorite book blogs to follow? Well, there's a lot, to say the least. The ever-popular Hot Guys Reading Books, Forgotten Bookmarks, Reasoning with Vampires (it's so mean but so funny), Narrative Casualty, BirdBrain(ed) Book Blog, Stella Matutina, Redeeming Qualities, Bonjour, Cass!, Violet Crush, Booktalk and More, things mean a lot, A Buckeye Girl Reads, One Literature Nut, and I recently started following Kris n Good Books, picky girl; Forever Young Adult is always entertaining, Promantica, Walkabout, books i done read, Wordsmithonia, and I'm tired of typing so I'm going to stop there. 

Thanks for answering those questions, Tasha! If you want to learn more about me, I'm being interview on Tasha's blog! Hop on over there to check out more. Enjoy the rest of the week!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Review - E-mail From God For Women

E-mail From God For Women by Claire Cloninger
Release Date: January 20, 2001
Publisher: David C. Cook
Genre: Christian non-fiction
Pages: 256
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
Quick, check your in-box! It's filled with more e-mail from God. Men, women, and children will love the daily messages from God in a uniquely designed book. Every message starts with a Scripture reference and continues with a refreshing thought for reflection.
I found this book for $1 at my best friend's college bookstore, and I couldn't pass it up. At first I was just going to read it straight through, but then I figured it would be better to just do one page at a time. Each page has a verse and the e-mail, with a different subject each day. I loved each one, and some of them even applied to me on that specific day. If you like devotional style books, give this one a try!

I purchased this book myself, and was not required to give a review.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

IMM: 9/11/11

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful Kristi at The Story Siren! We share books we received this week, whether we bought them, got them in the mail or checked them out from the library.

I got no new books this week, again! I am kind of bummed... but I have too many books, so it's okay. Next week I'll have quite a few, because my friend is coming up tomorrow from home and bringing me a bunch of packages, which I'm pretty sure are all books :P

Thursday, September 8, 2011

FF and BBH 9/9/11


Have you ever wanted a villain to win at the end of the story? If so, which one?


I can't think of any!
Book Blogger Hop
This Week's Hop

Most of us primarily read one genre of books, with others sprinkled in. If authors stopped writing that genre, what genre would you start reading?  Or would you give up reading completely if you couldn't read that genre anymore?


I honestly think I read a few genres. I love Christian fiction, contemporary and fantasy all equally; I don't think I could choose one. But if they were gone, I would probably read more historical or paranormal. They're not my favorites, but they would do.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Mini Review - Playing Hurt

Playing Hurt: A Guy's Strategy for Winning Marriage by Brian Goins

Release Date: June 24, 2011
Publisher: Kregel Publications
Genre: Christian non-fiction
Pages: 152
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon
Everyone admires people who play hurt, from the superstar athlete to the journeyman player who finishes the game even when hurt, sick, or falling apart. Everyone looks up to these athletes and wants to mimic their "never give up" attitude. Except when it comes to marriage.
This was a unique book! I was not initially part of this tour, as they primarily wanted man to review this. Obviously. However, they needed more people and I volunteered. This book has some good points, but I found the sports analogy almost too much. I understand it was written for guys to understand, but it was overdone and he could have let up a little. Still, all guys should give this book a chance!

Monday, September 5, 2011

Review - Amish Values for Your Family

Amish Values for Your Family by Suzanne Woods Fisher

Release Date: August 1, 2011
Publisher: Revell
Genre: Religious non-fiction
Pages: 192
Format: Paperback
Buy It: Amazon

For readers who long for strong families that know how to truly enjoy life together, there is much to learn from the Amish. Values like community, forgiveness, simple living, obedience, and more can be your family legacy--without selling your car, changing your wardrobe, or moving out to farm country.

In Amish Values for Your Family, bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher shows how you can adopt the wisdom of the Amish when it comes to family matters. In this inspiring and practical book readers will find charming true stories interlaced with solid, biblical advice about parenting, marriage, and all aspects of family life. As readers get an intimate glimpse into the everyday lives of real Amish families, they will learn to prioritize what's truly important, simplify decision-making, slow down as a family, safeguard time together, and let go when the time comes.

I enjoy reading about the Amish, and this book was no exception! I loved how it was written as a devotional, but you were also able to read it straight through as a normal book. Each chapter had a story with the lesson for that chapter, a review with some questions so the reader can apply the lesson to their life, and some random quotes from readers. I enjoyed the wide variety of lessons, and the simplicity of them! Most of the lessons were things we should already be applying in our lives, we just don't think about it. Definitely give this book a chance if you want to read something new!

I received this book free for review from Revell blog tours. I was not required to give a positive review, but simply express my true feelings.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

IMM: 9-9-11

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by the wonderful Kristi at The Story Siren! We share books we received this week, whether we bought them, got them in the mail or checked them out from the library.

I didn't get any new books this week! Yay!!! This gives me a chance to catch up on my review books :P

Thursday, September 1, 2011

FF and Book Blogger Hop 9/2/11

If you could change the ending of any book (or series), which book would you choose? Why and to what?
WARNING: My answer has spoilers to Mockingjay.

Ugh, Mockingjay!!!! Now let me say right now: Peeta was my preferred guy and I was happy with that part. HOWEVER, I don't think Gale should have run off like a puppy with his tail between his legs! He's stronger tan that and I think they should have been friends. ALSO, the DEATHS!!!! UGH so so angry! (If you couldn't tell.) Seriously, PRIM???? WHY? Why was that necessary? UGH UGH UGH. I have said my piece :P

Book Blogger Hop
Today's Hop

What are you most looking forward to this fall/autumn season - a particular book release?  Halloween? The leaves changing color?  Cooler temperatures? A vacation?
I do love the changing leaves! But I love all the holidays :) I love Halloween, and I love Thanksgiving!
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