Monday, December 11, 2017

Old Year's Race-to-the-Finish Reading Challenge 2017 - Update #5

This was a fun week! I finished three books and started the last two. I'm hoping to finish three more this coming week. Here's where I stand with only almost three weeks to go until the end of this challenge:
  • 31 Proverbs to Light Your Path by Liz Curtis Higgs - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Born Broken by Kristin Berry - Finished!
  • The Austen Escape by Katherine Reay - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Fiercehearted by Holley Gerth - Currently on page 104; 12 pages read.
  • The Wahls Protocol by Terry Wahls - Currently on page 95; 28 pages read
  • The Alphabet of Grief by Andrea Raynor - Finished!
  • Fiction Writer's Workshop by Josip Novakovich - Finished!
  • The New Me by Rebecca Goldstone - Finished!
  • Queen Bees and Wannabees by Rosaline Wiseman - Finished!
  • As Kingfishers Catch Fire by Eugene Peterson - Currently on page 345; 39 pages read
  • A Spectacle of Glory by Joni Eareckson Tada - Currently on page 373; 7 pages read
  • Jesus Always by Sarah Young - Currently on page 363; 7 pages read
  • On the Loose by Jenny B. Jones - Currently on page 146; 13 pages read
  • Sixth Covenant by Brock and Bodie Thoene - Currently on page 85; 8 pages read
  • A Year of Living Prayerfully by Jared Brock - Currently on page 65; 46 pages read
  • Dangerous Illusions by Irene Hannon - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Transforming Grace by Jerry Bridges - Currently on page 12; 16 pages read.
  • Church of the Small Things by Melanie Shankle - Currently on page 17; 17 pages read.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Old Year's Race-to-the-Finish Reading Challenge 2017 - Update #4

I think it's pretty clear that I'm probably not going to finish all of these books before the end of the year, but I'm having fun trying. And I did finish two more this week. Here's where I stand:
  • 31 Proverbs to Light Your Path by Liz Curtis Higgs - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Born Broken by Kristin Berry - Currently on page 101; 30 pages read
  • The Austen Escape by Katherine Reay - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Fiercehearted by Holley Gerth - Currently on page 92
  • The Wahls Protocol by Terry Wahls - Currently on page 67
  • The Alphabet of Grief by Andrea Raynor - Currently on page 77; 30 pages read
  • Fiction Writer's Workshop by Josip Novakovich - Currently on page 139; 20 pages read
  • The New Me by Rebecca Goldstone - Finished!
  • Queen Bees and Wannabees by Rosaline Wiseman - Finished!
  • As Kingfishers Catch Fire by Eugene Peterson - Currently on page 306; 37 pages read
  • A Spectacle of Glory by Joni Eareckson Tada - Currently on page 366; 9 pages read
  • Jesus Always by Sarah Young - Currently on page 356; 9 pages read
  • On the Loose by Jenny B. Jones - Currently on page 133; 10 pages read
  • Sixth Covenant by Brock and Bodie Thoene - Currently on page 77
  • A Year of Living Prayerfully by Jared Brock - Currently on page 19
  • Dangerous Illusions by Irene Hannon - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Transforming Grace by Jerry Bridges - Not started yet
Another book arrived in the mail a few days ago for me to review: Church of the Small Things by Melanie Shankle. I may not be able to resist starting it. Don't be surprised if you find it on the list next week.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Book Review: "Unshakeable"

Christine Caine knows that everything in our world that can be shaken will be shaken. The Bible tells us this is so. (See Hebrews 12:27.) But if our faith is firm, if it is planted in God and His Word, we will come through the shaking victoriously, revealing through our lives the faithfulness of our God.

Unshakeable is Caine's offering of inspiration and empowerment to readers who want to stand strong. The book is beautiful, a sturdy hardcover with a ribbon bookmark. Following a brief introduction, it gives readers 365 daily devotions on this theme of not being shaken when hard times come. Each devotional starts with Scripture, is followed by Caine's thoughts about it, and ends with a brief prayer. The devotionals follow the theme of Caine's previous books: Unstoppable, Undaunted, and Unashamed.

If you are looking for a bit of food for thought to savor each day through 2018 alongside your daily Bible reading, Unshakeable may help meet this need. I thank Thomas Nelson Publishers for sending me a complimentary copy, so that I could share my thoughts about it with you.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Old Year's Race-to-the-Finish Reading Challenge 2017 - Update #3

I found more time to read this week than I thought I would! Here is where I stand:
  • 31 Proverbs to Light Your Path by Liz Curtis Higgs - Currently on page 132; 81 pages read
  • Born Broken by Kristin Berry - Currently on page 71; 6 pages read
  • The Austen Escape by Katherine Reay - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Fiercehearted by Holley Gerth - Currently on page 92; 9 pages read
  • The Wahls Protocol by Terry Wahls - Currently on page 67; 8 pages read
  • The Alphabet of Grief by Andrea Raynor - Currently on page 47; 5 pages read
  • Fiction Writer's Workshop by Josip Novakovich - Currently on page 119
  • The New Me by Rebecca Goldstone - Finished!
  • Queen Bees and Wannabees by Rosaline Wiseman - Currently on page 319; 92 pages read
  • As Kingfishers Catch Fire by Eugene Peterson - Currently on page 269; 33 pages read
  • A Spectacle of Glory by Joni Eareckson Tada - Currently on page 357; 7 pages read
  • Jesus Always by Sarah Young - Currently on page 347; 7 pages read
  • On the Loose by Jenny B. Jones - Currently on page 123; 20 pages read
  • Sixth Covenant by Brock and Bodie Thoene - Currently on page 77; 12 pages read
  • A Year of Living Prayerfully by Jared Brock - Currently on page 19; 10 pages read
  • Dangerous Illusions by Irene Hannon - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Until We Find Home by Cathy Gohlke - Not started yet
I'm adding one more to the list. Transforming Grace by Jerry Bridges arrived for me to review, and I need to have it done before the end of the year. Since I haven't received Until We Find Home yet, I'll put this book in its place and save Cathy Gohlke's book for 2018.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Book Review: "31 Proverbs to Light Your Path"

Oh, I really love this book! A word-by-word-by-word Bible study of 31 beloved Proverbs presented by Liz Curtis Higgs, who used more than thirty different English translations of the Bible for research. Combined with her gentle honesty and timed-just-right humor, this book is easy to read yet powerful!

I have to admit, it wasn't what I expected when I read the title of the book, 31 Proverbs to Light Your Path. Because there are 31 chapters in the book of Proverbs, I thought it was a study of the entire book. But this is better. A word-by-word-by-word study of every verse may have been overwhelming for both writer and reader. Looking at 31 verses under Higgs's microscope was just enough. Though she could write a sequel if she wanted to. Higgs's Bible studies always bring so much truth to light.

As a bonus in this book, Higgs follows each chapter with a feature called One Minute, One Step. This is a short activity promised to only take one minute of the reader's time yet designed to help the reader take action right away, cementing the lesson learned. I've really appreciated each of these.

Waterbrook Multnomah sent me a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for my opinion, presented here. I recommend this book to anyone desiring a closer walk with God through a greater understanding of His Word.

Book Review: "Dangerous Illusions"

I love the way Irene Hannon connects so many of her books. Even as she launches this new series with Dangerous Illusions, she has included characters from previous books, one in a fairly prominent role. It's fun that she's keeping them alive, so to speak, and letting her readers know they're doing well.

I like meeting her new characters, too, of course. In Dangerous Illusions, we meet Trish Bailey, a young widow who has intentionally chosen to teach art in an underprivileged neighborhood, hoping to improve the lives of children who have a greater need for what she can offer than those she could teach in a more affluent area. She's also living with her mom in her childhood home, helping with disabilities she developed after the car accident that claimed Trish's husband and father's lives.

When another tragic death touches Trish's life, Detective Colin Flynn enters to investigate. He and two childhood friends are living a pact they made to spend their lives helping others, so he is drawn to this woman who follows the same code with hers. Professional distance is necessary, though, as he tries to solve the mystery that has brought them together.

I recommend this book, and thank Revell for sending me a complimentary copy. I'm looking forward to reading the rest of the Code of Honor series.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Old Year's Race-to-the-Finish Reading Challenge 2017 - Update #2

It was a slow week for reading, but here's the progress I've made so far:
  • 31 Proverbs to Light Your Path by Liz Curtis Higgs - Currently on page 51; 24 pages read
  • Born Broken by Kristin Berry - Currently on page 65
  • The Austen Escape by Katherine Reay - Finished! (Read my review here.)
  • Fiercehearted by Holley Gerth - Currently on page 83; 5 pages read
  • The Wahls Protocol by Terry Wahls - Currently on page 59
  • The Alphabet of Grief by Andrea Raynor - Currently on page 42
  • Fiction Writer's Workshop by Josip Novakovich - Currently on page 119
  • The New Me by Rebecca Goldstone - Currently on page 81
  • Queen Bees and Wannabees by Rosaline Wiseman - Currently on page 227
  • As Kingfishers Catch Fire by Eugene Peterson - Currently on page 236; 48 pages read
  • A Spectacle of Glory by Joni Eareckson Tada - Currently on page 350; 7 pages read
  • Jesus Always by Sarah Young - Currently on page 340; 7 pages read
  • On the Loose by Jenny B. Jones - Currently on page 103
  • Sixth Covenant by Brock and Bodie Thoene - Currently on page 65
  • A Year of Living Prayerfully by Jared Brock - Currently on page 9; 9 pages read
  • Dangerous Illusions by Irene Hannon - Currently on page 232; 134 pages read
  • Until We Find Home by Cathy Gohlke - Not started yet
This next week will be slow for reading, too, but if I finish just one of these books, I'll be happy for now.

Do you find yourself reading more or less around the holidays?