Saturday, October 31, 2009

Another winner

myspace layouts

Goes to Anonymous B
winner of Kiss Me Again



books

B is for Bufflehead by Steve Hutchcraft


This book is something to tweet about, squawk about, crow about, chirp about, quack about, honk about if you are an inquisitive, young or old, bird lover. Want to help your child learn about birds? then this is the book you need. Your child will fly into the fowls' life while reading. Sssshhhh don't tell them but they'll be learning while reading. It will not only entertain young minds but also educate them as well. The author takes the reader on an ABC flight to the wonderful world of birds in North America. The photos in this book were captured by the author himself. They are bright and eye-catching some even humorous. The book is filled with fascinating bird personalities, unique behaviors of birds, and intriguing fun facts. There are common birds, silly sounding named birds and funny looking birds included in this ABCs of birds. At the end of the book are pages of Who's Who challenge, which are challenges taken from the birds they read about in the book to see if they can remember Who's Who. There is even a Baby bird challenge page and pages filled with more detailed informative facts (ex: where they live, their habitat, and the food they eat) on each bird they encountered in the book. What better way to become a feathered friend lover than with a book.

Take a peek inside the book. If you click on the banner below it will take you to the cover of the book and you can flip through the sample book with the arrows on the page. Or you can click on each picture below which will take you to the the link so you can read the page better.



















books


Friday, October 30, 2009

Winner




Goes to Emma who won
Cara C. Putman's book
A Promise Kept.



books

My Son Jon by Kathi Macias


ABOUT THE BOOK:

Murder. Could there be a more chilling word? Could it be any more horrible than to have a loved one killed, brutally and heartlessly, without obvious reason or motive? When Liz Peterson’s elderly mother is found viciously beaten to death in her home, Liz and her husband, Charles, along with their grown son, John, and teenage daughter, Sarah, are horrified beyond words. Their previously predictable, respectable lives seem to have vanished without a trace, as they struggle to make sense of a senseless act.

And then a second blow—more devastating, if possible, than the first—rocks them to their core. John is arrested for his grandmother’s murder. As what’s left of the Peterson family begins to crumble under the weight of loss and accusation, the Petersons’ longstanding Christian faith is put to the test in a way they could never have imagined, and unconditional love is stretched to its limits. Will family ties and relationships withstand such a crushing blow, or will evil succeed in dividing and conquering this once close and inseparable family?


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored nearly 30 books and ghostwritten several others. A former newspaper columnist and string reporter, Kathi has taught creative and business writing in various venues and has been a guest on many radio and television programs. Kathi is a popular speaker at churches, women’s clubs and retreats, and writers’ conferences, and recently won the prestigious 2008 member of the year award from AWSA (Advanced Writers and Speakers Association) at the annual Golden Scrolls award banquet. Kathi “Easy Writer” Macias lives in Homeland, CA, with her husband, Al, where the two of them spend their free time riding their Harley.

Visit Kathi’s website at http://kathimacias.com/.

My Review:
Her mother has been murdered, her father has Alzheimer's and her son has been incarcerated. How much can a person handle? Will this nightmare ever come to an end for Liz? She must learn to love unconditionally. Everything and everyone that she loves seems to be slipping away from her-out of her control. Liz must learn to trust God when she feels she can't go on any more. She must lean on Him and let Him have total control over situations she can't control.

I have read several of Kathi's nonfiction books. This is the first one of her fiction books that I've read. She's an excellent author. She'll draw you into the story. It gets a thumb up from me.

EXCERPT:

Prologue

“I was in prison and you came to Me…” (Matthew 25:36).

Tick, damn it, tick! I cried silently, oblivious to the fact that I had just thought a word I would never say out loud. I glared through bloodshot eyes at the large, round, schoolroom-type clock that was the sole decoration on the cold gray wall behind the metal chair where John sat, dressed in an orange jumpsuit and holding a phone to his ear, while gazing at me through a glass partition, no doubt knowing that I was avoiding eye contact because the pain was just too great.

Still staring at the offensive timepiece on the wall, I demanded silently, Do you think just because you don’t make any noise that I don’t know what you’re doing, that I don’t realize that with every sweeping circle you’re stealing more and more of my son’s life?

Oh, God, if only there were a window in here! If I could just reach through this glass and touch him…!

The tears came then, and there was nothing I could do to stop them. I pulled my vision from the clock and caught a glimpse of John’s anguished, sweat-beaded face before squeezing my eyes shut in a vain attempt to block out the swell of emotions that threatened to drown me. I had to stop this denial and refocus my efforts and energy on my son. He would never survive this nightmare if I didn’t; none of us would.

I forced my eyelids open, wiping the tears from my cheeks and wishing I had been allowed to bring my purse in with me. But, of course, everything personal had been left behind before I had been admitted to the visiting area. You’d think those in charge would realize a mother’s need for a tissue in such a situation.

Slowly, I cracked my lips into what I was sure was a wooden smile. “You look good,” I lied, knowing he knew better but hoping to convince myself. “Are they treating you all right…feeding you, and—”

Trembling but quite obviously trying hard not to show it, he pressed the palm of his free hand against the glass in what was doubtless an attempt to cut off my pointless questions. “I’m fine, Mom. Honest. I told you that last time. And…please, you don’t have to come here. I don’t want you to come here. Can’t you understand that?”

How could I understand that my son didn’t want me to visit him and support him when he’d been accused of something so horrific it was beyond comprehension? How could I understand anything anymore? Not only had John been falsely imprisoned, but he was losing weight and I could see he wasn’t well. He needed me….

“I want to come,” I answered. “I have to. I’ve never abandoned you before. Why would you think I would now—especially now?”

The pain and fear in his dark blue eyes flickered before fading to dull. He pressed his lips together and shook his head. “I have to go, Mom. Time’s about up anyway. I…hate talking to you like this…seeing you this way.”

I watched his Adam’s apple bob slightly as he swallowed and then said, “I love you, Mom. You know that. Dad and Sarah, too.” Then, after only a brief hesitation, he removed his palm from the glass, hung up the phone, and stood to his feet. Immediately a corrections officer was at his side, escorting him from the room.

Still pressing the receiver to my ear, I whispered, “You didn’t even say goodbye, John. You didn’t say goodbye….”

At the thick metal door, just below and to the right of the silent wall clock, John stopped, turning slightly as his armed escort unlocked the heavy barrier. Glancing backward, his lips spread ever-so-slightly in that frightened, little-boy smile he’d had since he was a little boy, the one he’d worn when he walked on skinny, shaky legs into his kindergarten room on the first day of school, assuring me that he was all right. As I had that day when I stood in the hallway outside his classroom, I now did my best to return his smile. Then he turned his back to me and shuffled on shackled ankles through the passageway.

So little had changed in the eighteen years since that first day of school—and yet the world my husband and I had known since our oldest child was born twenty-three years earlier had exploded and vanished, washed away in tears…and in blood. Nothing would ever be the same again.

John’s kindergarten smile had been his signal to me that he could handle things and I should leave. With legs of lead and a heart even heavier, I forced myself to honor his wishes.

Now for the giveaway. In the book Liz's father leaves her with this piece of advice.
"Love them no matter how they turn out or what they do. We just have to keep on loving them."
Leave a comment telling me a piece of advice that someone has given you. I will put everyone's name that leaves a comment in the drawing for a copy of this book. Be sure to leave a way for contact. I will draw a winner for the book on Nov. 13th. Please US residents only.
The first rule must be followed before you can get extra entries below.

FOR EXTRA ENTRIES: see the following and be sure to leave a separate comment for each
(These can only be done if you've done initial entry above):

1. Become a Follower of my Blog - left sidebar (let me know if you already do) ~ 1 entry

2. Subscribe to my Blog - left sidebar (let me know if you already do) ~1 entry

3. Blog about this giveaway, with a link to my blog and come back and leave the link to your blog post. (Post 3 separate comments) ~ 3 entries

4. No Blog - No Worries - email 4 friends CC me (ABreading4fun[at]gmail[dot]com). (please post separate comments for each entry) ~ 4 entries

5. Add 4 the LOVE of BOOKS to your blogroll or favorite sites to visit, using my URL which links back to me! ~ 3 entries (be sure to post 3 separate comments)

6. Did you come from my other sites Lighter Side or The Treasure Box? if so add ~ 2 bonus entires

Please US residents only. Be sure to leave a way for contact if you are the winner. Drawing will be held on Nov. 13th.


Goes to winner MarthaE




This book was provided for review by Virtual book tours
Visit Virtual tours here





books

Thursday, October 29, 2009

2 Winners

myspace layouts images


Goes to the following winners.

Shawntele who won
A Man of His Word


&

Nikki who won
The Sounds of Sleigh Bells


Thanks everyone for visiting my blog and commenting. There are still many giveaways check the left sidebar.



books

BTT ~Oct. 29th

btt button

Suggested by Jennysbooks:

Something I’ve been thinking about lately: “What words/phrases in a blurb make a book irresistible? What words/phrases will make you put the book back down immediately?”

I don't like reading alot of curse words or slang, foul language, turns me off pretty quick. I generally will give the author three strikes. If I really can't take it anymore the book is discarded never to be picked up. If the author has drawn me in then I live through it; however, I'll write in my post that I didn't appreciate some language. I don't use bad language and it grates on me when others do. You can talk and carry on a conversation without using bad language.



books

Mercy in Motion by Jennifer Kennedy Dean




Mercy in Motion

Adapted from
Set Apart
by Jennifer Kennedy Dean
(Use each of these vignettes separately, or all three as one article)

The Life Giver

As the leper struggled through the crowd, his bell announced his shame. “Unclean. Unclean.” All the clean ones moved away, avoiding his pain at all costs. The leper worked his way through the religious throng, desperate to find the presence of Jesus.

Jesus looked past his rotting flesh and saw the hope that sloughed away with every rejection, every head that turned away, every face that registered disgust and fear. Jesus looked past the stench of decaying skin and saw the little spark of life crusted over with loneliness and hurt, almost extinguished.

He heard the anguished cry: “If you will, you can make me clean.” He restored the leper’s disease-ravaged body, but more than that, He restored his shame-ravaged soul. The fearless, compassionate touch of the Savior clothed the man in dignity. Jesus gave him more than a reprieve from death. Jesus gave him LIFE. (Matt. 8:1-3)

The Restorer

They hauled her through the streets, her guilt on display for all to see. No place for her to hide, no shelter from accusing glances and condemning words. She was a perfect target for their collective righteous outrage. A perfect target for the stones they itched to throw.

They dragged her into the presence of Jesus. Just how far would He carry His theme of mercy and compassion? Surely this woman would find mercy’s limits. Surely He would have no choice but to join them in their stone-throwing censure.

In Jesus’ presence, the stone-throwers discovered that His compassion never fails, His mercies never come to an end. He unmasked the surface righteousness of her accusers and set her free—FORGIVEN. (John 8:2-11)

The Heart Cleanser

He was so close, and yet He might as well have been a world away. To reach the presence of Jesus, she would have to wade through the conglomerate of very, very religious ones—the perfectly righteous men—who were His dinner companions today. She would drown in their scorn. Surely she could not keep her head above the waves of their belittling hatred that were sure to swallow her up. So close! So close!

The longing could not be contained. She had seen the mercy in His eyes when they fell on her that day. He didn’t say a word. No one knew but her. When she read the forgiveness in His face, saw the mercy in His glance, she had been born again. A clean slate. A fresh start. A heart flushed out and free of sin’s debris. Healed from wounds that festered in her soul. New.

Whatever it took, she would bring Him her most precious possession. She would break it at His feet and pour out everything she owned as her worship and adoration. She would wash His feet with her tears, as He had washed her heart with His mercy.

Breaking through the rigid righteousness of the religious, she found the gentle mercy of the Savior. At Jesus’ feet, she who had come to lower herself in His presence, found herself lifted up in the presence of her enemies. She left that day, CLEAN.(Luke 7:36-50)

Jennifer Kennedy Dean is Executive director of The Praying Life Foundation and a respected author and speaker. She is the author of numerous books, studies, and magazine articles specializing in prayer and spiritual formation. Jennifer’s most recent book release is Set Apart: A 6-Week Study of the Beatitudes.
Her book Heart’s Cry has been named National Day of Prayer’s signature book. You’ll find articles and daily quotes from Jennifer at the National Day of Prayer website.
Live a Praying Life, has been called a flagship work on prayer. Jennifer was widowed in 2005 after 26 years of marriage to Wayne Dean, her partner both in life and ministry. They are the parents of three grown sons. Jennifer makes her home in Marion, KY. Media can learn more about Jennifer at: http://jenniferkennedydean.net/media/index.htm/

Win a copy of Set Apart by Jennifer here.
Read my review of Set Apart here.
Read author interview here.
win leader's kit here.

This blog tour is through:




books

Set Apart by Jennifer Kennedy Dean


My Review:
Learn how we are set apart for God's use in this 6 week Bible study. Dean takes you through a study of the Beatitudes. The Beatitudes in Matt. 5 all start out Blessed, which means happy. Dean shares 8 secrets to happiness in her study. God created in us a need for happiness. He wants us to be happy. You will learn how to receive a heart transplant before this study is completed.

Read a special article from the author on Mercy here.
Read author interview here




Want to win a copy of this book. Go to the publisher's site here and read their description of the book find the answer to this question: If you want happiness you should pursue what? Leave a comment with the answer to the question and a way of contact. I will draw a winner for a copy of this book Nov. 16th. US residents only please.

The first rule must be followed before you can get extra entries below.

FOR EXTRA ENTRIES: see the following and be sure to leave a separate comment for each
(These can only be done if you've done initial entry above):

1. Become a Follower of my Blog - left sidebar (let me know if you already do) ~ 1 entry

2. Subscribe to my Blog - left sidebar (let me know if you already do) ~1 entry

3. Blog about this giveaway, with a link to my blog and come back and leave the link to your blog post. (Post 3 separate comments) ~ 3 entries

4. No Blog - No Worries - email 4 friends CC me (ABreading4fun[at]gmail[dot]com). (please post separate comments for each entry) ~ 4 entries

5. Add 4 the LOVE of BOOKS to your blogroll or favorite sites to visit, using my URL which links back to me! ~ 3 entries (be sure to post 3 separate comments)

6. Did you come from my other sites Lighter Side or The Treasure Box? if so add ~ 2 bonus entires

Please US residents only. Be sure to leave a way for contact if you are the winner. Drawing will be held on Nov. 16th.

2 winners of these books

Shantele & Carole



For more details about this featured book go here.

This book was provided for review by








books

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

eye of the god by Ariel Allison


This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

eye of the god

Abingdon Press (October 1, 2009)

by

Ariel Allison



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:


Allison is a published author who lives in a small Texas town with her husband and three young sons. She is the co-author of Daddy Do You Love Me: a Daughter’s Journey of Faith and Restoration (New Leaf Press, 2006). Justin Case, the first of three children’s books will be published by Harvest House in June 2009. Ariel is a weekly contributor to www.ChristianDevotions.us and has written for Today’s Christian Woman. She ponders on life as a mother of all boys at www.themoabclub.blogspot.com and on her thoughts as a redeemed dreamer at www.arielallison.blogspot.com.


From Ariel:
I am the daughter of an acclaimed and eccentric artist, and given my “unconventional” childhood, had ample time to explore the intricacies of story telling. I was raised at the top of the Rocky Mountains with no running water or electricity (think Laura Ingles meets the Hippie Movement), and lived out the books I read while running barefoot through the sagebrush. My mother read to me by the light of a kerosene lantern for well over a decade, long after I could devour an entire novel in the course of a day. Authors such as C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkein, George MacDonald, and L.M. Montgomery were the first to capture my heart and I have
grown to love many others since.

ABOUT THE BOOK

eye of the god takes the fascinating history surrounding the Hope Diamond and weaves it together with a present-day plot to steal the jewel from the Smithsonian Institute.

We follow Alex and Isaac Weld, the most lucrative jewel thieves in the world, in their quest to steal the gem, which according to legend was once the eye of a Hindu idol named Rama Sita. When it was stolen in the 17th century, it is said that the idol cursed all those who would possess it. That won’t stop the brilliant and ruthless Weld brothers.

However, they are not prepared for Dr. Abigail Mitchell, the beautiful Smithsonian Director, who has her own connection to the Hope Diamond and a deadly secret to keep. Abby committed long ago that she would not serve a god made with human hands, and the “eye of the god” is no exception. Her desire is not for wealth, but for wisdom. She seeks not power, but restoration.

When the dust settles over the last great adventure of the Hope Diamond, readers will understand the “curse” that has haunted its legacy is nothing more than the greed of evil men who bring destruction upon themselves. No god chiseled from stone can direct the fates of humankind, nor can it change the course of God’s story.

If you would like to read the prologue and first chapter of eye of the god, go HERE



books

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Call of Zulina by Kay Marshall

About the Book:

(Eugene, Oregon) – An arranged marriage, a runaway bride, and an ugly family heritage of brutal and inhumane slavery operations leave no room for a fairytale story. Grace Winslow, daughter of an English sea captain and African princess, finds herself in a horrific position of betrothal. Doomed to marry an obnoxious white man, whom she does not love, Grace runs away to escape the slavery she’s been surrounded by all her life. Instead, her journey from home brings her face-to-face with issues of extreme slavery, abuse and human trafficking. In the end she discovers slavery is more than just chains and finds grace that exceeds a name given to her by her parents.

Written by Kay Marshall Strom, The Call of Zulina links historical slavery issues with the modern-day crisis tainting many countries. On the heels of important legislature regarding human trafficking, Strom tackles the subject boldly as she sheds light on the practices and techniques used by angry slave traders. Seen as an advocate for those who have no voice, Strom finds words to communicate the message of history to today’s readers. While this book shines the light on an uncomfortable subject, the message of hope, freedom, and justice prevail and eternal truths discovered.


About the Author:
Author Kay Marshall Strom has two great loves: writing and helping others achieve their own writing potential. Kay has written thirty-six published books, numerous magazine articles, and two screenplays. While mostly a nonfiction writer, the first book of her historical novel trilogy Grace in Africa has met with acclaim. Kay speaks at seminars, retreats, writers’ conferences, and special events throughout the country and around the world. She is in wide demand as an instructor and keynote speaker at major writing conferences. She also enjoys speaking aboard cruise ships in exchange for exotic cruise destinations.


Interview:

1. How did you come up with the storyline of The Call of Zulina?

While in West Africa working on another project, I toured an old slave fortress and was struck dumb by a set of baby manacles bolted to the wall. The characters of Lingongo and Joseph Winslow, Grace's parents, are modeled after real people who ran a slave business in Africa in the 1700s. I "met" them when I was researching Once Blind: The Life of John Newton, a biography of the slaver turned preacher and abolitionists, author of Amazing Grace. The more I thought about them, the more I wondered, "If they'd had a daughter, who would she be? Where would her loyalties lie?"

2. What inspired you to write a book so entrenched with uncomfortable issues?

I used to think that non-fiction was the meat and potatoes of writing and fiction was the chocolate mousse dessert... fun, but not of much value. But I've come to understand that truths can be revealed through fiction just as powerfully as through non-fiction. Sometimes, more so! The fact is, for so long we have tried to look away and pretend that this horrible chapter in history never happened. But it did, and we still feel the effects today. Moreover, the roots of slavery--hunger for power and money, fear and diminishment of people unlike ourselves, and humanity's endless ability to rationalize evil actions--abound today. The time seemed right.

3. How have your travels around the world equipped you for writing such a historical novel?

People ask me where my passion for issues such as modern day slavery come from. To a large degree it is from the things I have seen and heard on my numerous trips to India, African countries, Cambodia, Nepal, Indonesia, and other places around the world.

4. Tell us a personal story regarding modern day slavery.

A most pervasive type of slavery is what is known as bonded servitude, where entire poor families are bound into virtual slavery--sometimes for generations--because of a small debt. This is especially common in India. I visited a village in central India where the women had been freed from bondage and set up with a micro loan that allowed them to raise a small herd of dairy cows. They worked so hard and saved every rupee. When they had enough saved, they persuaded a young teacher to come and start a school for their children. Then they used further profits to make low interest loans to others in the area so they could start their own businesses, too--a little bank. I sat in a circle with the five women who made up the "board of directors." Only one could read and write. I asked, "How will the next generation be different because of what you have done?" They said, "No more will be like us. When people look us, they see nothing. But when they look at our children, they see real human beings with value."

From invisible slaves to human beings... all in one generation!

5. Grace, the lead character in The Call of Zulina, forsakes all to escape the slavery of her parents and an arranged marriage.How common is this scenerio today in other countries?

Horrifyingly common. Slavery today takes many forms. According to UNICEF's more conservative count, there are about 12 million people living as slaves today--three times as many as in the days of the African slave trade. As for child arranged marriages, I have talked to girls "enslaved" to husbands in many countries. Examples include a girl in Nepal married at 9 to a middle-aged man, one in India married at 11, a 13-year-old in Egypt married to a man older than her father. I've seen it in Africa, Eastern Europe... so many places!

6. What about in America, are there slavery and trafficking issues here?

Unfortunately, there are. The U.S. State Department estimates between 14,500 and 17,500 people are trafficked into the Untied States each year, although it concedes that the real number is actually far higher. And it's not just states like New York and California that are affected, either. According to the U.S. Justice Department's head of the new human trafficking unit, there is now at least one case of trafficking in every state.

7. You've had 36 books published, and more written and contracted for future release. How has this one impacted your own life?

Some books report, some tell stories. This book has torn my heart.

8. Briefly tell us about the next two books in this Grace in Africa trilogy.

In Book 2, Grace watches her reconstructed life smashed by slavers and revenge, and she is forcibly taken to London. There she faces a new kind of tyranny and another fight for freedom... and for her husband, who is enslaved in America.

Book 3 is set in the new United States of America, in the heart of the slavery. It is a story of slavery at it's worst and redemption at its best.


Check out guest article and author recipe here.

What Can Concerned Citizens Do to Raise Awareness?
  • Find out all you can about Modern Day Slavery: then watch for chances to pass on what you have learned.
  • Write to your elected officials: Petition them to place a high priority on enforcing anti-slavery laws and to put pressure on countries that tolerate forced labor or human trafficking.
  • Buy Fair Trade products: Fair trade provides a sustainable model of international trade based on economic justice. To find out more, see http://www.fairtrade.net/ .
  • Support organizations that are in a position to make a difference. When you find an one that is doing a good job on the front lines, contribute to their cause so they can continue on.
  • Be willing to step into the gap. If you suspect someone is being held against his or her will, call the Department of Justice hotline: 1-888-428-7581. Or you can call 911.

Grand Prize Giveaway!!!

Kay Marshall Strom is giving the following books to one fortunate commenter from The Call of Zulina blog tour. The prize package includes several of Kay's books:

  • Seeking Christ: A Christian Woman's Guide to Personal Wholeness & Spiritual Maturity
  • John Newton:The Angry Sailor
  • Making Friends with Your Mother
  • Making Friends with Your Father





Here's how to enter: Leave a comment answering these two questions from the author's interview.
She use to think of non-fiction writing as_____________ and fiction writing as_______________.


A name will be drawn on Nov. 2nd to go into Kay's grand drawing. Be sure to leave a way for contact. Please US residents only. thank.


This blog tour is through:



provided this book for review.


books

Night Stand Meme ~ Oct.

What's On Your Nightstand


Here is my last posted listing. I have more of the books read. the reviews will be coming up as time goes on. All in dark print are read just don't have reviews posted. Old list here

My new list.
Man of His Word by Kathleen Fuller
Plain Promise by Beth Wiseman
The winter of candy cane by Debbie Viguie
The Great Christmas Bowl by Susan May Warren
One Imperfect Christmas by Myra Johnson
A Blue & Gray Christmas (4-in-1 book)
A Bride by Christmas (4-in-1 book)



books

winner

myspace comments

Goes to Edna winner of Fire by Trial book.



books