Monday, July 31, 2017

Scripture Graphics #50

What comfort to know that the One Who leads me is my strong rock and fortress—He never changes, is mighty and strong, and is my protector.

If God’s praise is continually in our mouth, then there is no room for complaints, bickering, murmurings, boastings, gossip, and accusation. “And my tongue shall speak of Thy righteousness and of Thy praise all the day long.” (Psalm 35:28)

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah. (Psalms 46:1-3)
When God alone is our refuge and strength, then our trust will remain unshaken when temporal “pillars” around us are removed.

The more we understand God and His ways, the more we will want to praise Him and the richer our praise to Him will be. So if we have no desire to sing or praise God, maybe we should start by searching His Word to know Who He is.

What passage did your preacher preach from yesterday?

Friday, July 28, 2017

First Line Friday and Giveaway | A Name Unknown

Happy Friday! I'm super excited to share a book that's been on my TBR list as soon as I heard about it!!

Seriously, the whole first page of this book is intriguing. But, I'll stick to the first line. ;)

Before I get into all of the "goodies" with reviews and about the book and all that amazing stuff (which you'll want to read), be sure to hop along to all of these other blogs and see what First Lines they have to share! Please note that I may not fully endorse all of the books that these bloggers read or the content in these blogs.

Rachel - Bookworm Mama
Andi - Radiant Light
Robin - Robin's Nest
Kathleen - Kathleen Denly
Trisha – Joy of Reading
Jeanette – CJane Read

I tried really hard not to fan-girl over this book. I have enjoyed all of Roseanna White's books that I've read so far. This was no exception. I did figure out the main plot and resolution fairly quickly, but the tale was so exciting that it kept me turning pages nonetheless.

I loved Peter's stutter. I found it unusual and it added a lot to his story. I also appreciated how he was portrayed as good, yet he had his annoying faults. And... I loved what he did. Let's just say I could fully identify and grinned at all of scenes in which he was doing this activity.

Rosemary was a great character who was raised in the ghettos of London, stole for a living, yet was not so set in her ways that she was a horrible person.

The Christian theme was woven throughout the story, but it seemed a little weak for me. For example, I know that a person doesn't have to say a specific prayer to be saved, but it was like, "Do you believe?" The character said yes. She was told, "Welcome to the family!" No prayer was said. That just seemed odd.

The romance was hidden until the ending, and then it kind of had a lot with the feelings and emotions. Yet overall, I found it to have less romance than White's other books that I've read.

*I received this book from CelebrateLit and happily provided my honest review*

About the Book

Book title: A Name Unknown  
Author: Roseanna M. White  
Release date: July 4, 2017  
Genre: Historical Romance  

She’s Out to Steal His Name. Will He Steal Her Heart Instead? Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins that helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they are no longer pickpockets—now they focus on high value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. Rosemary’s challenge of a lifetime comes when she’s assigned to determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany. How does one steal a family’s history, their very name? As Europe moved closer to World War I, rumors swirl around Peter Holstein. Awkward and solitary, but with access to the king, many fear his influence. But Peter can’t help his German last name and wants to prove his loyalty to the Crown—so he can go back to anonymously writing a series of popular adventure novels. When Rosemary arrives on his doorstop pretending to be a well- credentialed historian, Peter believes she’s the right person to help him dig through his family’s past. When danger and suspicion continue to mount, though, and both realize they’re in a race against time to discover the truth—about Peter’s past and about the undeniable attraction kindling between them.

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author

Roseanna M. White pens her novels beneath her Betsy Ross flag, with her Jane Austen action figure watching over her. When not writing fiction, she’s homeschooling her two children, editing and designing, and pretending her house will clean itself. Roseanna is the author of over a dozen historical novels and novellas, ranging from biblical fiction to American-set romances to her British series. Spies and war and mayhem always seem to make their way into her novels…to offset her real life, which is blessedly boring. You can learn more about her and her stories at

Guest Post from Roseanna White

It’s always a challenge to make a historical setting authentic—especially when it’s set in a region you’ve only ever read about. As I was writing A Name Unknown, I learned so much about Cornwall—all the more when I had the opportunity to visit the gorgeous Penzance region while the book was still in edits! I quickly learned that I had far too many trees in my story, and hadn’t quite captured the uniqueness of the coastal setting. I dove into rewrites with excitement and gusto, ready to make my fictional Cornwall more like the real one. I studied the Cornish accent, Cornish foods, typical Cornish coloring in hair and eyes. I’ve now gotten rather proficient at making pasties (beef hand pies) from scratch, I’ve special-ordered ingredients to make Cornish ginger cookies called fairings, and I’ve spent quite a lot of time listening to videos of people speaking in a Cornish accent. Delving into this rich region and its history was a blast! And I’m so excited to get to share the culture of Cornwall—and a taste of their unique flavors—with you. In a special Celebrate Lit giveaway, I’ll be offering not only a signed copy of my book, but also some homemade ginger fairings! Here’s the recipe I used . . . after special ordering the Mixed Spice (reminiscent of pumpkin pie spice) and Golden Syrup (a thick syrup with a bit of a toffee flavor) from Amazon. 😉 (I have a gram scale so did use the weight measurements rather than volume—also, English teaspoons and tablespoons are a bit bigger than American, so I heaped them, and I turned out deliciously.) GINGER FAIRINGS RECIPE 100 grams butter, cold and diced 225 grams all-purpose flour ¼ heaping teaspoon salt 2 heaping teaspoons baking powder 2 heaping teaspoons baking soda 1 heaping teaspoon ginger 2 heaping teaspoons mixed spice 100 grams superfine (caster) sugar 4 heaping tablespoons golden syrup Preheat oven to 375 F. Grease baking sheets or line with parchment paper. Combine flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and spices in a stand mixer. Add the butter and beat until mixture forms coarse crumbs. Stir in sugar. In a small saucepan, warm the golden syrup until it’s clarified a bit; stir into the flour mixture until a dough forms. Roll the dough into walnut sized balls and put on prepared baking sheets a few inches apart. Bake 8-10 minutes, until golden. Cool a few minutes on the trays and then transfer to a cooling rack.


To celebrate this tour, Roseanna is giving away a grand prize of a paperback copy of A Name Unknown & 2 dozen cookies from Roseanna!!! Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!

Blog Stops

July 20: Genesis 5020
July 21: Pause for Tales
July 22: Bigreadersite
July 23: Vicky Sluiter
July 24: Pursuing Stacie
July 25: Live.Love.Read.
July 26: Carpe Diem
July 27: cherylbbookblog
July 27: Splashes of Joy
July 29: Karen Sue Hadley
July 31: Cafinated Reads
July 31: Artistic Nobody

Monday, July 24, 2017

Scripture Graphics #49

On days (and weeks) where things are crazy and busy, I need this reminder: I must go in God’s strength, not my own; I must seek Him for the way I am to take, the things He wants me to do.

This should never cease being our heart’s prayer and desire.

If we are starting to slide, maybe we need to examine: in whom or in what is our trust? Something other than the Lord?

This verse reveals three beautiful truths about God’s relation to us: He hears us (Psalm 6:9, 18:6, 34:4, 40:1, 116:1, 120:1), He is merciful (Psalm 31:7, 57:10, 62:12, 103:8, 116:5), and He helps us (Psalm 54:4, 33:20, 46:1, 94:17, 121:2, 124:8).

What is your favorite Psalm?

Friday, July 21, 2017

First Line Friday | Over Maya Dead Body

Today's read... if you're a mystery fan, you will want this book!! But, heads'-up, you'll want to get the first two books first. ;) At any rate, here's the first line (keep reading for my review too).

"I snatched my bag off the luggage carousel at Boston's Logan International Airport and plunked it next to my parents as a sticky-fingered urchin tried to liberate the brightly colored ribbons I'd tied to the handles."
(Over Maya Dead Body by Sandra Orchard)


Also, be sure to hop along to all of these other blogs and see what First Lines they have to share!
Please note that I may not fully endorse all of the books that these bloggers read or the content in these blogs.

Rachel - Bookworm Mama
Andi - Radiant Light
Robin - Robin's Nest
Kathleen - Kathleen Denly
Trisha – Joy of Reading
Jeanette – CJane Read

If you're wondering if this book can be jumped into without the other two books having been the others first. I'm not going to give anything away, but a lot of things in this book would have a more powerful punch if you've gotten to know some of the characters in previous books.

That being said, yes, I read this book without having read the other two Serena Jones books. I picked up on the threads that I likely missed (so it CAN be read as a stand-alone, but references to past books make me want to read them) and enjoyed the book overall.

As a mystery... five stars hands down! My brain was swirling with the "whodunit" and I didn't piece together things as quickly as Serena did (which I liked; I like a good mystery that has me puzzling all of the way through).

As a Christian book... eh... it is very, very clean. There were no parts that made me cringe, no unacceptable language. God was mentioned, prayer was said. But overall as a Christian book, it wasn't a very strong one. What stood out to me far more was the romance.

As a romance... there was a love triangle (hides face). I don't like love triangles! But, this one ended happily for me, cause she ended up with the guy I shipped. That being said, there was a kiss, and almost-kiss. There were a LOT of feelings. I mean, Serena has two guys she likes and they both definitely like her, and she's confused as to which to choose. So yeah. If you don't like love triangles, you may not want to read this.

Overall though, I'd give this book 4.5 stars. I enjoyed the style (first-person contemporary is something I'm finding I enjoy), the mystery, and the cleanness of this book (I've read some more strictly "Christian" books that made me cringe more than this book).

*I received this book from Revell books and happily provided my honest review*


FBI Special Agent Serena Jones arrives on Martha's Vineyard with her family, ready for a little bit of R&R and a whole lot of reminiscing as they celebrate the engagement of an old family friend. But crime doesn't take a vacation, and she's soon entangled in an investigation of a suspicious death tied to an antiquities smuggling ring.

When her investigation propels her into danger, Serena must stay the course and solve this case before anyone else dies. But just how is she supposed to do that when the two men in her life arrive on the scene, bringing with them plenty of romantic complications--and even a secret or two?

Award-winning author Sandra Orchard keeps readers guessing with this fast-paced mystery laced with romance.

You may buy the book here.

Find out more about Sandra Orchard here.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Scripture Graphics #48

If our delight is in God's law, then we should not be in danger of close companionship with the ungodly, sinners, or scornful. Likewise, if we are in close company with those three, we will not find delight in God's law.

If we are so concerned about "my rights," does this indicate a lack of trust in our eternal judge?

How are we fighting against the enemy so that the foundations are not destroyed? How are we upholding the foundations in our era--around our family, friends, in our workplace, on social media? Or are we turning a blind eye as foundations crumble?

There is a combination here: God's Word keeps us from the paths of the destroyer (so we need to read and apply it), and God Himself holds us in His paths (so we need to follow, trust, and obey Him).

What are you meditating on today?

Friday, July 14, 2017

First Line Friday, Blog Tour, and Giveaway | Dreams and Devotion

Today I'm excited to feature another new-release! The Tales of Taelis series is a great children's series with solid, Christian principles.

Here is the first line:

Dara pushed a strand of hair, the color of a crow’s wing,
back into the cloth that kept it out of her face. She stared
off toward the snow-covered hills, glistening in morning light.
(Dreams and Devotion by Sarah Holman) 

Before I share my review and all the other fun stuff of a blog tour... hop over and see what the other FLF bloggers have to share! Also, comment and share a first line for today!

Rachel - Bookworm Mama
Andi - Radiant Light
Robin - Robin's Nest
Kathleen - Kathleen Denly
Trisha – Joy of Reading
Jeanette – CJane Read

This was a sobering story, filled with true-to-life heartache and choices amidst hardship. I appreciated the lessons that Dara and Dresden learned about forgiveness and trust.

I know it was true to the time, but some people may be hesitant to read this because Dresden was a priest. In ways it was true to the Catholic priests of that era in that he vowed to never marry and to hold the church's needs above his own, yet the message of salvation through grace alone and not works was clearly presented. It was definitely evangelical and not works-based-salvation. That would be one thing I'd like to address with younger readers as they read the book so they wouldn't be confused about the doctrines portrayed here vs. traditional doctrines of priests.

As with the other books in this series, it makes a great children's book with a simplistic style and easy to understand lessons.

*I received this book from the author and happily provided my honest review.*

Some dreams will be dashed, and their devotion will be tested.
Dara's life is full of farm work and worries, especially now that her older brother is a priest in a far off city. Yet she still has time to dream of the life she hopes will someday be. She dreams of marrying her dear friend and the worries of her family ending. Now, the selfishness of one person threatens her very way of life.

Dresden's initial excitement about living a life devoted to the service of God quickly is dashed on the rocks of reality. The life of a priest is nothing like what he imagined. To make matters worse, he finds out his family back in his home village is on the brink of disaster. Torn between his vows and his love for his family, what will he choose?

Buy the book for the special preorder price, here.


Enter HERE

About the Sarah

Sarah Holman is a not so typical mid-twenties girl: A homeschool graduate, sister to six awesome siblings, and author of many published books and short stories. If there is anything adventuresome about her life, it is because she serves a God with a destiny bigger than anything she could have imagined.
Find her at

Stops on the blog tour:
July 8
July 9
His Princess Warrior ~ Katie Hamilton
July 10
In the Book Case ~ Tarissa Graves
Jessica Greyson ~ Jessica Greyson
July 11
Read Another Page ~Rebekah Morris
July 12
Shannon McDermott ~ Shannon McDermott
July 13
The Page Dreamer ~ Deborah O'Carroll
July 14
Knitted by God’s Plans ~ Kendra E. Ardnek
With a Joyful Noise ~ Amanda Tero
Once Upon an Ordinary ~ Kate Willis
July 15

Jaye L. Knight ~ Jaye L. Knight
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