Monday, September 30, 2013

Book Review: Stranded

Book Three of Dani Pettrey’s Alaskan Courage series is just as exciting and intriguing as the first two books. In Stranded, the stories of the McKenna siblings continue, this time focusing mostly on Gage. The family has just signed a contract with an Alaskan cruise line to provide adventure excursions for interested passengers in each port. Gage’s job is to travel on board the ship, training these passengers for camping, kayaking, and hiking adventures. Gage thinks this new aspect to his job will give him just the diversion he needs to forget Darcy St. James, whom he met in Book Two, Shattered.

As Gage makes his plans, Darcy’s friend and former partner begs her for help with her latest undercover, investigative reporting assignment. Darcy thought she’d given up that kind of reporting, but Abby sounds desperate. Darcy heads to Alaska and greets her friend only to learn that Abby’s gone missing by the very next day. Darcy determines to find her whatever the risk.

Fans of romantic suspense with a Christian message will love this story. Bethany House Publishers sent me a complimentary copy for this honest review. I enjoyed reading it just as I enjoyed reading both Submerged and Shattered. I’ll be watching for the next McKenna story, Silenced, next year.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Book Review: Fatal Tide

I would classify Fatal Tide, the third book of The East Salem Trilogy, as pre-post-apocalyptic. In other words, the good characters in this book are working to defeat the evil characters in order to prevent a world-changing-and-definitely-not-for-the-better event. To complicate matters, some of the bad characters are demons. Thankfully, some of the good characters are angels. It’s a classic good versus evil story with an absolutely brilliant, and God-glorifying, ending.

Like most science fiction works, this one contains a lot of scientific, psychological, and medical technobabble. It’s all relevant to the story, though, and explained clearly and often enough that the reader doesn’t get too bogged down in it. There’s also quite a bit of violence as the forces of good and evil collide. But there’s also mystery and intrigue, action, adventure, and a touch of romance—just enough, but not too much. If those sound like the ingredients of a story that you appreciate, you’ll want to read Fatal Tide. Just be sure to read Waking Hours and Darkness Rising first.

I’ve enjoyed following main characters Tommy Gunderson and Dani Harris, along with their unusual assortment of friends, throughout this series. The ending caught me by surprise, but I thought it was perfect! I thank Thomas Nelson Publishers for sending a complimentary copy of this book for me to review for you.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Book Review: The Miner's Lady

The Miner's Lady is the third book in Tracie Peterson’s Land of Shining Water series—and it was just as fascinating to read as the first two books. This book is the story of two Italian families living in the same town with all of the grown men from both families working in the same mine. Sadly, the two families have been feuding for three, going on four, generations. They work together peacefully, but tolerate no other contact.

For this reason, Chantel Panetta is quite flustered when she learns her younger sister, Isabella, has fallen in love with Orlando Calarcos and plans to marry him in spite of the feud. The couple hopes that their marriage and any resulting children will bring peace to the two families. Chantel fears a more grave outcome for the two, yet agrees to help them in their quest. When she runs into friction from Orlando’s brother, Dante, life really gets complicated.

As in the first two books, this one not only blesses the reader with an inspirational story, but also provides an historical glimpse into the life of immigrants in America in the late 1800’s who settled in Minnesota and took up particular occupations in that state. I enjoyed learning about the Italian (and Finnish) miners, their families, customs, and community. I appreciated Peterson’s story-telling ability and getting to know her characters, watching them learn how to choose what’s right, even stranding against such strong forces as tradition and family loyalty.

Bethany House Publishers sent a complimentary copy of The Miner’s Lady in exchange for this honest review. I’m happy to recommend this book.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Book Review: Burning Sky

Burning Sky is an exceptional first novel by its author, Lori Benton. It’s historical Christian fiction just as the genre should be. Set in America’s northeast just after the Revolutionary War, Burning Sky tells the story of a young woman forcibly taken from one home only to have her new home destroyed by violence and disease. When she returns to her original home, she finds her parents’ cabin abandoned. She also finds a wounded man dying on their property. She must nurse him back to health as she struggles to make a new place for herself in a somewhat hostile environment.

Though she trusts no one else, Willa Obenchain, called Burning Sky by the Mohawks who adopted her, clings to the God she loves. In one of the most beautiful passages of the book, she realizes that, though everything she loves has been destroyed, if she’s still breathing, God still must have a purpose for her life. Her challenge is to find that purpose with God’s faithful guidance. The whole book is a testimony to what God is able to do when people offer Him faith like that.

I loved reading this story and am happy to recommend it to you. Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers sent a complimentary copy in exchange for this honest review.

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