Social Media

More Places I Hang Out

Quid Pro Quills - A Group of 6 Writers... Writing!
Twin Willows Farm - My Farm and Fiber Arts Webpage
Great Lakes ACFW Chapter - My Local Chapter of the American Christian Fiction Writers

Subscribe Via E-Mail

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Powered by Blogger.

Followers

Copyright by Pegg Thomas 2009-2015

Blogroll

free counter
Apr 24, 2015
AngelhoodAngelhood by A.J. Cattapan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This story is amazing. A.J. Cattapan does a great job tackling a very tough subject for our youth today, suicide. What better use for fiction than driving home truths in a palatable format that our kids will enjoy. The characters are engaging, realistic, and on a journey that will keep youths - and adults - turning the pages.

The opening scene is hard-hitting. High school senior Nanette commits suicide. Where can the story go from there? How about into a whole new realm. Nanette finds herself in a limbo-like state where she's put in charge of watching over another young girl who is considering suicide. As Nanette helps Vera, she starts to change, and it's not all about the wings that sprout from her back. In helping another, she learns the value of all she left behind. Can both girls reach the healing truth in time?

This is fiction. While some may want to quibble over the theology, I want to encourage readers to glean the message within its pages. The consequences of suicide reach far beyond the person who dies. Angelhood explores these consequences in a touching, authentic, eye-opening story.
Apr 21, 2015
Rebekah (Wives of the Patriarchs, #2)Rebekah by Jill Eileen Smith
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

We have only sketchy information about most women in the Bible. Jill Eileen Smith does an awesome job of fleshing out these women in her stories. While fiction, this story is a plausible exploration into the life of Rebekah, the wife of Isaac.

Rebekah leaves her brother's home to marry a man she's never met. She knows about him, of course. Isaac's fame has spread far and wide. He is the chosen offspring of Abraham. Imagine the emotions that batter her from all sides as she makes that journey. They meet, they marry, but how much do they really know about each other? As a couple, they face infertility, tense family relationships, and then finally the birth of their twins. The long-awaited children that will eventually drive a wedge between Rebekah and her husband.

Jill Eileen Smith crafts a compelling story that colors in the spaces between the verses. There is plenty of emotional punch to keep the reader engaged. The story also transports the reader back in time to experience the smells, tastes, and textures of a time long, long ago.
Apr 16, 2015
Finding Amanda: inspirational suspenseFinding Amanda: inspirational suspense by Robin Patchen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Finding Amanda tackles a tough subject, survival of an abusive situation and the life-long ramifications the survivor, and her family, must battle. But in typical Robin Patchen style, it's wrapped in a story full of intriguing characters and plot twists that will keep the reader flipping pages.

Amanda Johnson is plagued by the past and it's interfering with her life. She thinks she can make it on her own, writing her cooking blog, teaching cooking classes, and raising her two little girls. But pressures from the past are still there. Writing her memoir seems like the perfect solution to expose her abuser and finally release the past. Her so-to-be-ex-husband doesn't agree.

Mark Johnson wants nothing else but to save his marriage. He didn't fight overseas to come home and lose the most important battle of his life. But how can he cope with his wife's past if she won't talk, or listen, to him? And when she turns to someone else for comfort, can he keep his mind on the goal?

No spoiler here, but fasten your seat belt for a thrilling ending!


Apr 14, 2015
The Lady of Bolton HillThe Lady of Bolton Hill by Elizabeth Camden
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Clara Endicott was born to privilege, her father a well-known and respected preacher. It was expected that she would leave her mark on the world. Clara follows her heart and makes her mark in a way her family didn't expect. She champions the cause of the working class. Those kept in poverty by those who own the industrial revolution.

Daniel Tremain's world consisted of poverty, hunger, and hardship. He lost his chance at college when his father died and left him the man of the family. By his wits and pure hard work, he pulls himself and his family out of poverty. Daniel becomes a lion on the jungle of the industrial revolution.

Music brought them together, but the bonds of friendship formed in their early years will be sorely tested in the years to follow.

Check out my reviews of more Elizabeth Camden books:
Into The Whirlwind
The Rose of Winslow Street
Against the Tide

Apr 9, 2015
The Creole Princess (Gulf Coast Chronicles, #2)The Creole Princess by Beth White
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A wonderful sequel to Beth White's The Pelican Bride. The reader is once again steeped into the history of the Gulf Coast region, now in the grip of the Revolutionary War. The part this region played in the war is not a subject often addressed, even in history textbooks or biographies of the period.

While the British, French, Spanish, and American rebels decide the fate of the colonies, Lyse Lanier does her best to provide for herself and her family. Her family, steeped in the tradition of the area, has fallen on hard times. She's too busy to worry about what happening hundreds of miles away in the northern colonies.

Don Rafael Gonzales arrives in Mobile with confidence and flair, in all outward appearance, a dandy who dabbles in trade. Quite against her will, Lyse is drawn to the handsome stranger. But he comes and goes with little rhyme or reason, and Lyse can't spend her days dreaming about the Spanish Don.

As the war presses in against the Gulf Coast, it becomes impossible for anyone to ignore it. Suspicion about who is and who isn't a loyalist to the Crown of England tears old friendships - and families - apart. New lines are drawn about who can be trusted, and who can't. Lyse and Rafael have to decide where they fall along these lines, and if they'll be on the same side, or not.


Apr 6, 2015
Against the TideAgainst the Tide by Elizabeth Camden
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Elizabeth Camden is one of my new favorite authors. She is a master at helping us to sympathetically connect with the less-than-perfect people who populate her stories. This is another one of her touching stories embedded with some little-known historical facts.

Lydia Pallas survives growing up in an orphanage, but not totally unscathed. She builds a safe life for herself until Alexander Banebridge brings her more than just documents to translate. While she untangles the languages he needs translated, he tangles her emotions into knots she doesn't want. Until the day he explains what he's really looking for. Joined with a common goal, they set out to right a wrong that stems from both of their pasts.

Mar 23, 2015
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl by Harriet Jacobs
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is an autobiography of a young woman who - eventually - escaped from slavery. It's an interesting look into the life of a slave in the mid-1800s. A little confusing to me is that the book is written by Harriet Ann Jacobs yet the main character is called Linda. I'm not sure why that discrepancy. It isn't explained.

Most of the biographies I've read about people who have escaped slavery or were emancipated during the Civil War were of field slaves. Linda was a house slave and her story is quite different from any I've read before. She had a much different life - overshadowed by the evil that is slavery - than the field hands. In many ways, she was treated much kinder. She learned to read and write. She had some freedom to come and go and visit her relatives. And yet, she only had these freedoms at the whim of her master. Although a learned man and a doctor, he wasn't a noble character.

Fascinating look into a depraved society that kept their fellow humans in bondage and the creative and cunning ways the oppressed found to escape that bondage. Worth reading if you're at all interested in this subject. The author goes into detail about the evils faced, but also goes into detail about the kindness of others who helped her on her journey to freedom.