Monday, August 31, 2009

Gone To Green by Judy Christie


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Gone To Green

Abingdon Press (August 2009)

by

Judy Christie



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:




Judy Pace Christie, after working as a journalist for twenty-five years, left the daily news business to open a consulting firm that works with individuals, businesses, and churches on strategies for meaningful life and work, including goal-setting, living fully, and balancing personal and professional lives. She is the author of Hurry Less, Worry Less; Hurry Less, Worry Less at Christmastime; and co-author of Awesome Altars. Judy and her husband live in northwest Louisiana.




ABOUT THE BOOK

Lois goes from being a corporate journalist at a large paper in the Midwest to the owner of The Green News-Item, a small twice-weekly newspaper in rural North Louisiana. The paper was an unexpected inheritance from a close colleague, and Lois must keep it for at least a year, bringing a host of challenges, lessons, and blessings into her life.

When Lois pulls into Green on New Year’s Day, she expects a charming little town full of smiling people. She quickly realizes her mistake. After settling into a loaned house out on Route 2, she finds herself battling town prejudices and inner doubts and making friends with the most surprising people: troubled teenager Katy, good-looking catfish farmer Chris, wise and feisty Aunt Helen, and a female African-American physician named Kevin.

Whether fighting a greedy, deceitful politician or rescuing a dog she fears, Lois notices the headlines in her life have definitely improved. She learns how to provide small-town news in a big-hearted way and realizes that life is full of newsworthy moments. When she encounters racial prejudice and financial corruption, Lois also discovers more about the goodness of real people and the importance of being part of a community.

While secretly preparing the paper for a sale, Lois begins to realize that God might indeed have a plan for her life and that perhaps the allure of city life and career ambition are not what she wants after all.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Gone To Green, go HERE



books

Friday, August 28, 2009

Dakota: A Spiritual Geography by Kathleen Norris


I loved reading about SD and ND history but wasn't real thrilled in the History and stories of monostaries, monks, Benedictines' history, monasticism and the likes. Many swear words used throughout the book too. Was disappointed in this book but I did stick it out and read the whole thing.





books

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Frontiersman’s Daughter by Laura Frantz


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

The Frontiersman’s Daughter

Revell (September 1, 2009)

by

Laura Frantz



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

I was born and raised in Kentucky and my love of history goes deep - way back to the 18th-century when my family first came into the Bluegrass State. It will always be home to me, even though I now live with my husband, Randy, and my sons, Wyatt and Paul, in the misty woods of northwest Washington. I go back as often as I can to visit family and all the old haunts that I love.

I grew up playing on the original site of Fort Boonesborough and swimming in the Kentucky River and climbing the Pinnacle near Berea and watching the great outdoor dramas of the early settlers. Often my cousins and brother and I would play in my Granny's attic and dress up in the pioneer costumes she made us and pretend to be Daniel Boone, Rebecca, Jemima, or the Shawnee.

As I grew up I began to write stories and they were always historical, filled with the lore I had heard or read about. It's no accident that my first book (which is actually my fifth book - the others were practice!) is about those first Kentucky pioneers.

I feel blessed beyond measure to write books. My prayer is that you are doubly blessed reading them.

Note: Laura Frantz credits her 100-year-old grandmother as being the catalyst for her fascination with Kentucky history. Frantz's family followed Daniel Boone into Kentucky in 1792 and settled in Madison County where her family still resides. Frantz is a former schoolteacher and social worker who currently lives in the misty woods of Washington state with her husband and two sons, whom she homeschools.



ABOUT THE BOOK

Lovely but tough as nails, Lael Click is the daughter of a celebrated frontiersman. Haunted by her father's former captivity with the Shawnee Indians, as well as the secret sins of her family's past, Lael comes of age in the fragile Kentucky settlement her father founded.

Though she faces the loss of a childhood love, a dangerous family feud, and the affection of a Shawnee warrior, Lael draws strength from the rugged land she calls home, and from Ma Horn, a distant relative who shows her the healing ways of herbs and roots found in the hills.

But the arrival of an outlander doctor threatens her view of the world, God, and herself--and the power of grace and redemption. This epic novel gives readers a glimpse into the simple yet daring lives of the pioneers who first crossed the Appalachians, all through the courageous eyes of a determined young woman.

Laura Frantz's debut novel offers a feast for readers of historical fiction and romance lovers alike.

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Frontiersman’s Daughter, go HERE




books

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Daniel's Diary by Allia Zobel Nolan

I was a little disappointed with this book. It is written as though you're reading Daniel's diary of things that happened in his life. However, I felt it put Daniel off as arrogant, prideful and of Macho nature. Maybe it was just me; I wasn't impressed with it.






books

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Surrender the Wind by Rita Gerlach


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Surrender The Wind

Abingdon Press (August 2009)

by

Rita Gerlach



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Rita Gerlach has published three historical novels plus articles in Writers Gazette, Write to Inspire, Will Write 4 Food, and The Christian Communicator.

She also is the editor of Stepping Stones Magazine, an online website focused on writing, marketing, and promotion for writers. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and The Western Maryland Writers Guild.

She currently lives in Frederick, Maryland. You can also visit her at her Blog





ABOUT THE BOOK

Seth Braxton, a patriot of the American Revolution, unexpectedly inherits his loyalist grandfather's estate in England. Seth is torn between the land he fought for and the prospect of reuniting with his sister Caroline, who was a motherless child taken to England at the onset of the war.
With no intention of staying permanently, Seth arrives to find his sister grieving over the death of her young son. In the midst of such tragedy, Seth meets Juleah, the daughter of an eccentric landed gentleman. Her independent spirit and gentle soul steal Seth's heart. After a brief courtship, they marry and she takes her place as the lady of Ten Width Manor, enraging the man who once sought her hand and schemed to make Ten Width his own. From the Virginia wilderness to the dark halls of an isolated English estate, Seth and his beloved Juleah inherit more than an ancestral home. They uncover a sinister plot that leads to murder, abduction, and betrayal--an ominous threat to their new life, love, and faith.

If you would like to reas the Prologue of Surrender The Wind, go HERE

Watch the trailer:

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books

Monday, August 24, 2009

Plain Pursuit by Beth Wiseman


If you want to know what it is really like to be on both sides of the shunning then you need to read Beth's book: Plain Pursuit. Englischer (non-Amish person), Carley Marek is given a forced month's vacation from her job as a newspaper reporter in Houston, TX. So she decides to use it for her benefit and visit her friend turned Amish, Lillian Stoltzfus, in Paradise, PA. She would use the time to learn about the ways and life of the Plain People. Then she would write an article for the newspaper about her discoveries. She needed a reprieve, to rejuvenate and regroup her editor told her. She needed to get past her past troubles and move on. She needed to look ahead and not dwell on the past. Little did she know what lay ahead of her on this forced vacation. She was going to learn first hand what it really meant to be on both sides of the shunning. What little she knew of God she just couldn't see that shunning was what He would want from this community of people who, loved, cared for their own and pulled together in times of need. Was the Amish practice of shunning truly God's Will? Would she be able to challenge them to rethink some of their practices? Would she be able to influence them? It was so true that the simple life provided the people with nourishment of faith, hope and love, but she just couldn't fully understand the shunning practice. This community seemed to be filled with peace and goodwill. How could she get the people to see that God really doesn't approve of shunning? or Does He? What about unconditional love? God never turned His back on anyone! Can she get them to see this? I guess you'll just need to read Beth's book and find out. Beth draws the reader in from the first page to the last. This was definitely a hard to put down book for me. One I kept wanting to turn the page to see what will happen next. I highly recommend this book.



For more information about this book click here.

I review for Thomas Nelson Book Review Bloggers


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Friday, August 21, 2009

Kathryn's Fountain by David Claassen


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Kathryn's Fountain

Cladach Publishing (November 8, 2008)

by

David Claassen



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

I'm a follower of Jesus Christ and seek to live my life to please Him and for His glory. I'm walking this journey with my life's partner, Diann. We've been married since 1972 and have two grown children. Our daughter Julie serves as a missionary with her husband Victor in Mexico in a ministry they founded called Fishers of Men. Check their ministry out at www.fishersofmenmexico.org. Our son Dan is married to Teri and he's a detective in a police department in a suburb of Indianapolis.

I have pastored the Mayfair-Plymouth Congregational Church of Toledo, Ohio since 1975, having just celebrated 33 years at the church. You can check out the church at http://www.mayfairplymouth.org/. You can also visit me at my blog, where I add material about every other day or so.

I enjoy photography, that's why I'm treating you with a different photo of mine each week on the web site. Over three hundred of my photos are for sale at www.istockphoto.com.

I'm also a ventriloquist, of sorts, and treat the children of my church with a "visit with Ricky" every third Sunday of the month in the morning worship services.

Raising white homing pigeons is another of my hobbies. I enjoy watching them soar overhead.

That's just a little bit about me. Thanks for visiting. God bless you!


ABOUT THE BOOK

Kathryn is resigned to living out her last days at Victorian Manor, a beautiful old home for senior citizens. Then one day a miraculous experience happens to Kathryn at the garden fountain, and she begins living an adventure beyond her wildest dreams. Love and sacrifice take on new meaning as she involves a social worker and a police detective in carrying out what she believes to be her calling -- to rescue a street child named Jasmine.

Kathryn's Fountain celebrates the gifts that the generations can bring to each other. The conclusion is a resounding affirmation that it's never too late to make a difference.

If you would like to read an excerpt from Kathryn's Fountain, go HERE










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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Guest author Peter Lundell on Prayer



Author Peter Lundell shares...

Powerful Prayer Principles


9 Ways to Improve Your Prayer Life


1. Establish a designated place to pray.

2. Set a designated time of day to pray.

3. Use written prayers or music to help get started.

4. Repent of the things that hinder your prayer.

5. Pray out loud--this clarifies thoughts.

6. Personalize Bible verses when you pray.

7. Let yourself get in a situation where you have to trust God.

8. Seek the Holy Spirit's leading--and listen.

9. Be bold and persistent.




Top Ten Reasons Prayer Doesn't Get Answered


Lack of faith --A much-abused idea, but essentially still true.


Effects of sin separating us from God --The Bible says that God sometimes won't listen when we wallow in sin.


Unforgiveness / Emotional wounds / Self-pity --A weird dynamic, but scary in how powerful these emotions are.


Unhealthy lifestyle in disagreement with prayer --Don't pray to lose weight, then eat donuts.


Demonic affliction --Satan and his demons are deceptive and merciless.


Strongholds in the mind --People allow attitudes and beliefs to block out the truth.


God's working behind the scenes --Sometimes God is in a process of answering before we can see it.


God's chastisement --Sometimes people bring punishment upon themselves, and it's for their ultimate good.


God's classroom of testing and faith building --The way God answers prayer may test you and build your faith.


Old age or time to die --Sometimes it's our time to go!






Read more about Peter Lundell's book Prayer Power here.

Learn how you can win Prayer Power book here.

Read an interview with Mr. .
Lundell here


This blog tour is through:





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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Interview with Peter Lundell


Today we have Author Peter Lundell sharing with us about prayer. Thanks for joining us Mr. Lundell.

1. Many Christians don't talk about hardships with prayer. Why do you open up about the struggles you have had drawing close to God in prayer?

My first draft of the book read like an instruction manual of all the things you ought to do to be spiritual like me. I realized that the more spiritual I tried to sound, the less honest I was being. I was hiding behind my words. No reader should have to put up with all that. And besides, it was boring.

So I determined to be totally honest. I rewrote the book and openly shared my doubts, struggles, and failures, because everybody goes through the same things. And if I’m not honest with readers, how can I expect readers to be honest with others or even themselves?

I take sort of an “I mess up and you mess up, but God loves us anyway, so let’s connect with him” approach. Readers often tell me how much they identify with that. And when they read about how God still worked amazing things in my life and in others’, it gives them hope.

I’ve discovered two things: First, honesty is liberating, and I don’t want to live any other way. Second, when we stick with prayer and don’t give up, answers and victories rise from our struggles. Answers and victory never rise from pretending.

I hope to connect with readers so that they’ll in turn connect with me and the victories I’ve experienced—so that they will experience their own victories.

2. What are some of the things God has taught you about prayer over the years - especially from the perspective of your leadership roles?

It’s good to listen before I talk. If I always dive into prayer and never spend time listening, I only dump my own “give-me list” on God. But his word says in 1 John 5:14–15 that when I seek and pray according to his will, my prayer will be answered. So the key is to first get in sync with God.

We’ve got to have a hunger, or thirst, for God. Without hunger, no program or technique or anything we learn will go anywhere. But with hunger for God, we could know almost nothing and still have a great prayer life. Hunger is singularly important—which is why it’s the first chapter.

When I pray with faith and don’t get what I ask for, God will soon show me why. There is always something to learn in unanswered prayer.

3. What do you mean by "praying boldly" and how can Christians learn to do that?

Praying boldly is the opposite of excessively polite prayer and of—I’ll just say it—wimpy prayer. Praying boldly is praying without intimidation, not caring what other people think, expressing ourselves to God without concern for being appropriate or religiously correct but rather with a passion from our guts that pours out, unashamedly. Bold prayer is not arrogant. It’s humble and faithful, because of its self-abandoned focus on God and expectation of what God will do.

People often assume they must be polite or solemn before God. Nowhere does the Bible teach this. Two thirds of the Psalms are complaints, and they are not polite. Most prayers in both Old and New Testaments are bold, expectant, and to the point. When Jesus teaches on prayer in Luke 11:5–10, he talks about an obnoxious guy who bangs on his friend’s door at midnight. Then he says we should bug him the same way by continually asking, seeking, and knocking. I often wonder if God gets tired of diplomatic prayers. Why else would he actually tell us to be bold and persistent—and use examples that, if we were on the receiving end, most of us would say are obnoxious.

There’s no real method to doing this. It’s a mindset that chooses to free itself from previous assumptions and uses the Bible as a model of how to pray.

4. How can we practice the presence of God and include him in everyday tasks?

Practicing the presence of God primarily has to do with developing an attitude, a continual awareness that God is always with us, and that in turn, we always incline our attention toward him.

The first thing most of us need to do is to slow down or cut unnecessary activities from our calendar. Busyness is an enemy to practicing the presence of God. Jesus repeatedly blew off other people’s agendas for him and continually focused on his purpose for being here. Pastors who do the same are always happier, closer to God, and more effective. And when we practice the presence of God, we increase our ability to be intimate with him when times do get busy.

Here are some practices that may help develop that attitude: My last thought before I sleep and my first thought when I wake up is centered on God. When I get mad or stressed, I try to see things from God’s perspective. When I am waiting for someone, I use that time to pray. I do menial tasks with an awareness and love of God. I often have a praise song on my mind as I go through the day.

5. You're a proponent for creating a place of prayer and establishing a time of prayer. Why are these important elements for prayer?

These two disciplines are the most important external helps for maintaining a strong prayer life. Without them, our good intentions eventually drown under the assaults of busyness and distractions.

A place of prayer helps us concentrate in the face of distractions. That place could be the church sanctuary, an empty room in the house, a spot in the back yard, or even a rug laid out on the floor, on which the only thing we do is pray. The physical surroundings of a location devoted to prayer tell our brains, “Focus on God.” And if we ever feel bored or in a rut of over-familiarity with a place, a change of location can be stimulating.

Establishing a set prayer time engrains a habit of prayer into our minds, such that if we miss it, we feel anxious because something is missing or wrong—and it is! A set prayer time is not to force ourselves to pray as much as to create a boundary of protection from busyness. That boundary of time is like a protective fence around a garden, where we give ourselves freedom from intrusions to spend unhindered time with God. Preferably we’ll do this as early as possible in the morning, so we can lay the whole day before the Lord. And unlike a prayer place, I have never found benefit in changing my prayer time, so I highly recommend keeping it sacred, especially if we’re travelling or really busy. Whether short or long, this protective fence of a set time must be intentional, because no one else can do it for us.

6. What advice would you give to people who struggle with God when they pray?

True men and women of prayer will sometimes struggle in prayer, as did many figures in the Bible, like Jacob’s symbolic wrestling with the angel and Jesus’ wrestling over his fate in Gethsemane.

Like anyone else, I struggle with unanswered prayer or major decisions to do something by faith, when tragedy strikes, problems of injustice, and healings that take a lot longer than I’d like. The key is to keep struggling—don’t give up and too quickly assume something is God’s will before you know for sure. The angel commended Jacob for not giving up until he got a blessing. God the Father actually sent an angel to help Jesus wrestle in Gethsemane. Sometimes wrestling in prayer is God’s will for us.

Wrestling in prayer is actually a good thing. It draws us closer to God. And it changes us in the process. And that’s what most of us hope for!



Publisher: Revell (1/1/09)
Language:English
ISBN-10: 0800732634
ISBN-13: 978-0800732639
240 pages
Retail: $12.99

Read more about the book Prayer Power here.
Learn how you could win this book and more books on prayer here.

Read bonus materials Mr. Lundell shares on prayer here.


This blog tour is through:



books

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Prayer Power by Peter Lundell





About the Book:

In the crazy world around us, our prayers may too often seem ineffective. Do you want to connect with God when you pray and receive more direct answers? PRAYER POWER is the tool you need to build a more powerful and dynamic life of prayer.

Intensely practical and straightforward, PRAYER POWER helps you improve on thirty essential facets of prayer such as passion, routine, fasting, praying with others, listening to God, handling distractions, and spiritual warfare. In each brief chapter you'll be inspired by stories of people whose lives of prayer give us powerful examples.

PRAYER POWER can be used as a month-long devotional, a prayer guide, or a reference for help in specific areas. Whether you're a new believer or think you've heard it all, this book's refreshing and honest insight will guide you to a deeper connection with God.

Read Author interview here
Read some bonus materials from the author here.


About the Author:

Peter Lundell, a former missionary to Japan, is a pastor at Walnut Blessing Church in Walnut, California. He has an MDiv and DMiss from Fuller Theological Seminary and is the founder of the Walnut Valley Pastors' Prayer Network. Lundell is the author of two books, and his articles have appeared in magazines such as Guideposts and Pray!


Leave a comment telling me when is your favorite time to have your personal quiet time. Be sure to leave a way to contact you if you are the winner. Drawing will be held on Sept. 7th.

GRAND PRIZE BUNDLE INCLUDES:

(leave a comment for an opportunity to win this great package)

Prayer Power by Peter Lundell

When God Turned off the Lights by Cecil Murphey (Cec is one of Peter's mentors)

Committed but Flawed by Cecil Murphey

Also includes: Prayer Journal, Pen, and Candle



This blog tour is through:





books

Monday, August 17, 2009

Montana Rose by Mary Connealy


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Montana Rose

Barbour Publishing, Inc (July 1, 2009)

by

Mary Connealy




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Mary's writing journey is similar to a lot of others. Boil it down to persistence, oh, go ahead and call it stubbornness. She just kept typing away. She think the reason she did it was because she was more or less a dunce around people—prone to sit silently when she really ought to speak up(or far worse, speak up when she ought to sit silently).

So, Mary had all these things, she want to say, in her head; the perfect zinger to the rude cashier, which you think of an hour after you’ve left the store, the perfect bit of wisdom when someone needs help, which doesn’t occur to you until they solve their problems themselves, the perfect guilt trip for the kids, which you don’t say because you’re not an idiot. She keep all this wit to herself, much to the relief of all who know her, and then wrote all her great ideas into books. It’s therapeutic if nothing else, and more affordable than a psychiatrist.

So then a very nice, oh so nice publishing company like Barbour Heartsong comes along and says, “Hey, we’ll pay you money for this 45,000 word therapy session.” That’s as sweet as it gets.

Mary's journey to publication is the same as everyone’s except for a few geniuses out there who make it hard for all of us. And even they probably have an Ode to Roast Beef or two in their past.

Mary has signed an exclusive contract with Barbour that will have her writing eighteen (18) books for them over the next four years! This book is the first in the Montana Marriage Series. The second book will be the Husband Tree, and the third will be Wildflower Bride



ABOUT THE BOOK


Fire up your love of romance with Montana Rose.

When surrounded by a mob of ill-bred, foul-smelling, women-hungry men, the newly widowed and seemingly spoiled Cassie “China Doll” Griffin has no choice. Marrying handyman Red Dawson seems the only alternative to Cassie’s being hitched to a brutal rancher. But can this “China doll” bear exchanging smooth silk for coarse calico? Red was reluctant to be yoked to an unbeliever, but sometimes a man has no choice. Will Red change Cassie’s heart by changing her name? Wade Sawyer is obsessed with saving Cassie from a marriage of convenience. How far will he go make her his own?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Montana Rose, go HERE



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Friday, August 14, 2009

Free e-book download


I heard about this free e-book that can be downloaded. Thought I'd pass on the information. It's a 64 page pdf file. I read about it at Seeds of Love. The e-book may be downloaded here.
book Title: Are Public Schools an Option for Christian Kids?
By d'Escoto, Harper, Marcum, and Suarez





books

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Night Watchman by Mark Mayheir


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Night Watchman

Multnomah Books (May 5, 2009)

by

Mark Mynheir



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


Mark Mynheir was born and raised on the east coast of Central Florida. Like most boys growing up, Mark enjoyed sports, mainly football and martial arts.

In 1983, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and went through basic training at Parris Island, South Carolina. After serving four years in the Marines, Mark changed gears and pursued a career in law enforcement.

During his career as a police officer, Mark has worked as a narcotics agent, a S.W.A.T. team member, and a homicide detective.

Over sixteen years ago, during a health crisis involving his oldest son, Mark gave his life to Jesus Christ. Shortly after his conversion, he felt God leading him in a new direction: writing. Now he balances dual careers as a police officer and novelist.

He has authored Rolling Thunder (The Truth Chasers Book One), From the Belly of the Dragon (The Truth Chasers Book Two), and The Void (The Truth Chasers Book Three).

Mark is married to the love of his life and has three fantastic children, and they all currently reside in Central Florida.


ABOUT THE BOOK

When everything is ripped away...

Eleven months ago, Ray Quinn was a tough, quick-witted Orlando homicide detective at the top of his game-until a barrage of bullets ended his career.and his partner's life.

Now medically retired with a painful handicap, Ray battles the haunting guilt for his partner's death. Numbing the pain with alcohol and attitude, Ray takes a job as a night watchman at a swanky Orlando condo community.

But when a pastor and an exotic dancer are found dead in one of the condos in an apparent murder-suicide, Ray can no longer linger in the shadows. The victim’s sister is convinced her brother was framed and begs Ray to take on an impossible case─to challenge the evidence and clear her brother’s name.

Ray reluctantly pulls the thread of this supposedly dead-end case only to unravel a murder investigation so deep that it threatens to turn the Orlando political landscape upside down and transform old friends into new enemies. As Ray chases down leads and interrogates suspects, someone is watching his every move, someone determined to keep him from ever finding out the truth─at any cost.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Night Watchman, go HERE




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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Party Time with the Fillies



The Fillies turn a whopping two on August 13th. (that's tomorrow) Mark your calendars and come and help them celebrate. We won’t have cake and punch, but they're sure to have a good time! Head to Petticoats & Pistols here.







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