Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Title: Cayman Summer
Author: Angela Morrison
Publisher: CreateSpace (April 19, 2011)
Pages: 298

I’ve been waiting a long time to read CAYMAN SUMMER by ANGELA MORRISON. I read her first book in the series, TAKEN BY STORM, a few years back and couldn’t wait for the next. But wait I would. Due to a change in publishers it took longer than expected. Next would be UNBROKEN CONNECTION. I enjoyed that one as well. With stacks of books to read, I finally was able to read CAYMAN SUMMER.

I wouldn’t say the TAKEN BY STORM series is packed full of surprises and adventure, yet it will keep you turning the pages. I love the story of Michael and Leesie. Throughout this series they’ve become lifelike. Michael is so endearing, and Leesie solid and pure. I love the way the story moves for Michael’s point-of-view to Leesie’s. From chatspot log, to dive log, to most private chapbook. It’s well written, and a quick and easy read.

I loved both Michael’s and Leesie’s journey, how two opposites worlds come together to become one. The TAKEN BY STORM series is one without a predictable outcome. Up until the very end I had no idea how two very different worlds would mesh together. It sadness me that their story is over. I’ll miss them.

Friday, June 22, 2012


Title: A Cowboy’s Heart

Author: Brenda Minton
Publisher: Steeple Hill (February 1, 2009)
Pages: 224

A COWBOY’S HEART by BRENDA MINTON, is not the first book that I’ve read by her, and it certainly won’t be the last. I have read several, and have yet to be disappointed. When picking up a BRENDA MINTON book, I’m certain to be taken on a journey with a cowboy I’ll fall in love with.

Willow Michaels is a strong and independent woman that has a past that has caused her to become that way. She guards her heart, and plunges into making her dreams come true. Dreams that don’t include a certain cowboy.

Clint Cameron is used to taking care of everyone in his life. You might say he’s a fixer, always there for those he loves, making things right. Only problem is, not everyone wants to be fixed.

Willow and Clint both have a life long history of character traits they need to work on. Can they do it together, is the question at hand.

Once again BRENDA MINTON has created characters that walk off the pages and into your heart. I smile at many of her original lines. She’s at the top of my list of authors I strive to one day write half as well, creating remarkable characters with unique stories, and brilliantly written.

As with any BRENDA MINTON books, A COWBOY’S HEART will immediately draw you in, keep your interest throughout, and hold you tight in the end. One you won’t want it to end. One with no room for improvement or alterations. Something my aspiring writers mind wants to do in many novels I read.

After discovering BRENDA MINTON’S writing, I devoured each new book that came out. I’m now going back in time, reading all that I had not read. Next on the list…THE COWBOY NEXT DOOR.

Monday, June 18, 2012


Title: Chameleon (The Ravensmoore Chronicles)
Author: Jillian Kent
Publisher: Realms (May 15, 2012)
Pages: 304

If you love a good murder mystery set in the early 1800’s, CHAMELEON by JILLIAN KENT is the novel for you. It’s well written with well thought-out characters, and descriptive details. You’ll feel as though you’ve stepped back in time.

Lady Victoria Grayson is swept into a new and exciting world. After being isolated with a childhood illness for most of her life, she is finally living what she had only read and dreamt of.

Lord Witt‘s wartime profession as a spy, taught him that all are not who they claim to be. When the Regent request Lord Witt to investigate Lady Victoria’s physician brother, Lord Ravensmoore, Witt could not have guessed he’d be taken with his sister.

It’s not long before Lady Vitoria and Lord Witt find themselves in the middle of a plot targeting the lords of Parliament. Together their feelings for one another will be tested, as well as their faith.

CHAMELEON is heavy on mystery, intrigue, and scandal with a light sprinkling of romance. CHAMELEON is as much about Lady Victoria and Lord Witt, as it is about Victoria’s brother, Lord Ravensmoore. As soon as Mercy came into the picture, I sense the next book in this series would be hers. What a great introduction to the next book.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


Title: Out of the Far Country
Author: Christopher Yuan and Angela Yuan
WaterBrook Press (May 3, 2011)
Pages: 240

I came across OUT OF A FAR COUNTRY by CHRISTOPHER YUAN AND ANGELA YUAN on Amazon. I was intrigued, and wanted to get a better understanding of what a gay man goes through, as well as his parents. Discovering Christianity was involved, sealed the deal.

OUT OF A FAR COUNTRY sat on my bookshelf for months. While at a meeting at church, a man that joined our group mention a book a friend of his wrote that may be of interest, seeing we were involved in the prison and jail ministry. The title he mentioned sounded familiar, along with the author. When I returned home I rushed to my bookshelf to see if it were indeed the same book, and to my delight it was.

The very next day I began to read OUT OF A FAR COUNTRY. Each morning I read a chapter out of my Bible, a chapter of non-fiction, and fiction throughout the day. OUT OF A FAR COUNTRY is like no other non-fiction I can recall reading. I couldn’t put it down. It’s probably the faster I’ve read a non-fiction book.

Christopher Yuan had a secret, one he’d been carrying around for some time. When he decided to reveal that secret, that he’s gay, his mother shows him the door.

Angela Yuan loves her son, but being gay… Her first instinct is to give him an ultimatum. Be straight or get out. Angela was consumed with depression, disappointment, and sense of hopelessness. With every intention of ending her life, she sets out to say her good-byes to her son.

OUT OF A FAR COUNTRY is a quick, easy read that is well written. One you will have a hard time putting down. I loved going from Christopher’s point-of-view to Angela’s. I even learned something new about an old song.

This book is several stories in one:
A gay mans journey in life.
A mother’s journey with a gay son.
A journey through addictions.
A journey through imprisonment.
A redemption of a marriage.
The journey of faithless to faithfulness.

I highly recommend OUT OF A FAR COUNTRY to everyone, whether you know someone who is gay, you are, or aren’t a Christian, you know someone that’s incarcerated, you know someone that has little hope in their marriage, or someone with an addiction. This is a true story of hope and redemption.

My hope is that people will pickup and read this book despite…or maybe because of, the gay aspect.

Monday, June 4, 2012


More in-depth descriptions of these books can be found on the ACFW Fiction Finder website.

Lily (Song of the River) by Diane Ashley and Aaron McCarver -- Desperate for financial independence, Lily Anderson has embarked upon a riverboat venture. Will she learn to trust God's leading or head into disaster? Lily's partner, Blake Matthews, is initially stymied, then smitten by the Mississippi miss. Can he anchor her heart, or will Lily fall for another man's wiles? (Historical from Barbour).

A Promise for Miriam by Vannetta Chapman -- Miriam King loves the children of Pebble Creek and is content teaching in the one room schoolhouse, then Gabe Miller steps into her life and everything changes. (Contemporary Romance from Harvest House).

Sophie's Daughters Trilogy by Mary Connealy -- The little girls from Petticoat Ranch are all grown up with love stories of their own...you didn't think Sophie's Daughters would grow up to be quiet little things, did you? (Historical Romance from Barbour).

Love in Disguise by Carol Cox -- When Ellie Moore wins a job as an undercover Pinkerton operative, she finds that playing a part in real life is far different than acting out a role onstage. Will the man who captures her heart still care for her when he learns the woman he's fallen in love with doesn't exist? (Historical Romance from Bethany House).

A Dream of His Own by Gail Gaymer Martin -- Quinn O'Neill feels to blame for his family's death and longs to release the guilt he feels, and when he meets Ava Darnell life takes a positive turn as he helps Ava earn his trust...but suspicion nearly undermines their relationship while he perseveres to encourage Ava to have faith that dreams of healing and family just might become reality. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired).

End of the Trail by Vickie McDonough -- Brooks Morgan won Raven Creek Ranch in a poker game, but when he goes to claim what's his, he finds a woman with a shotgun living in his house-and she claims she isn't leaving. (Historical Romance from River North (Moody Publishers).

Proof by Jordyn Redwood -- What does a victim do when DNA testing sets a guilty criminal free? (Medical Suspense from Kregel).

Walks Alone by Sandi G. Rog -- A Cheyenne warrior bent on vengeance. A pioneer woman bent on fulfilling a dream. Until their paths collide. (Romance from White-Fire Publishing).

The Hidden Life by Adina Senft -- An Amish spinster finds love where she had given up hope in the second book of the Amish Quilt trilogy. (Contemporary from Faith Words (Hachette).

Winning the Widow's Heart by Sherri Shackelford -- When Texas Ranger Jack Elder stormed the isolated Kansas homestead, he expected to find a band of outlaws. Instead, the only occupant is a heavily pregnant woman-and she's just gone into labor. A loner uneasy with emotion, Jack helps deliver widow Elizabeth Cole's baby girl and can't get back on the trail fast enough. The robber and murderer he's after killed one of Jack's own, and he vows to catch the man. But when he returns to check on Elizabeth and her little one, he discovers that she may hold the key to his unsettled past-and his hoped-for future. (Historical Romance from Love Inspired).

Double Exposure by Susan Sleeman --When photographer Jennie Buchanan unknowingly captures a drug-cartel meeting on film and the cartel tries to kill her, her ex-boyfriend risks everything to expose the truth-about the drug smugglers, the past and the future together he still wants. (Romantic Suspense from Love Inspired).

The Director's Cut by Janice Thompson-- Full of the humor and crazy family dynamics Janice Thompson fans have come to love, this colorful story gives you an inside look at Hollywood and a healthy dose of romance. (Contemporary Romance from Revell).

Short-Straw Bride by Karen Witemeyer -- All he ever cared about were his brothers and his land, but when a good deed goes awry, Travis Archer is stuck with a bride who endangers both. (Historical Romance from Bethany House).

Friday, June 1, 2012


Title: Yes! The Prayer God Loves to Answer
Author: Don Nori Sr.
Publisher: Destiny Image Publishers (June 1, 2010)
Pages: 192

I have to be honest, when I received YES! THE PRAYER GOD LOVES TO ANSWER by DON NORI SR., I wasn’t impressed with the cover, nor the title. The old saying, don’t judge a book by its cover, certainly comes to mind in this case.

This is the first book I’ve read by MR. NORI, but it won’t be the last. He certainly has a gift for getting across a point in a way that one can grasp easily. My copy is covered with highlights galore and dog-eared pages. I’m heavily involved in the prison and mail ministry through my church, and have made a mental note to send a copy of this amazing book to each of the guys I write to behind bars.

YES! THE PRAYER GOD LOVES TO ANSWER is a must read for everyone. This is the way we need to live our lives. This book will answer unanswered questions for so many. There are many great things in this book I could quote, but I will leave you with one.

“Success is not an accident; it is a series of right choices that result in both achieving of your goals and the unfolding of your destiny. You control both. You decide the direction of your life, your future, your destiny.” And “Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for; it is a thing to be achieved.”

I could go on and on with one inspiring message after another, but then I’d have to type out the entire book.