25 Book Reviews

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A very different review: A Study Guide and DVD

"Stuck" Study - the places we get stuck and the God who sets us free!
                           By Jennie Allen
  This review is on one chapter of the book and the DVD that accompanies the book. 
WHAT a marvellous study guide this is- meant for women of all ages and all walks of life!!
It would be a great group study, where women could discuss their views and feelings. The guide includes a section in which you write your feelings about each topic. You are provided with a Bible study and then examine your feelings with regard to it. The DVD has more to examine of each chapter and I will be honest with you, it really makes you think- with the author explaining more and the lovely graphics that hit you - in a meaningful way.

I was provided with the chapter entitled, "Mad" and it was most appropriate for me this week !! I was mad!! My daughter , who is a fourth year university student in nursing, was denied the right to complete her clinicals, due to a boyfriend situation , who ended in a legal battle. My daughter was declared innocent but not in time to get her clinical placement. Boy, was I mad!! How unfair!! The guilty walk free, and my child suffers!!!  I was furious, with the legal system, the university, the lawyer, etc. Then, I read this chapter, and watched this DVD. You know, I was wrong!! Yes, wrong. I have the right to be angry, but will it do any good? NO!!  God has to remove that feeling. He has the power to solve our problems and we don't need to get upset.  I have prayed about the matter, done the work provided in the book and watched the video and guess what??? I no longer feel angry, worried maybe, but that too, can be answered with faith in God's power.  Our problems can be taken care of  with prayer. As women, we feel things differently from our husbands, thus must handle them in our own way with God's help.
This book and DVD are a valuable resource and could be used alone, but I can see it being used with a woman's group, the discussion would be fantastic as you share what God has worked in your life.
I commend Jennie Allen, the author , on addressing issues that plague us, but are often not spoken of. We are embarrassed that we have these feelings. After all, we are Christians, aren't we?? Should we feel this way? YES!! But we need to deal with them, as the author explains. A fantastic tool to work with!! 
WOW , did it help me! Thanks, Jennie.
"Samplers of the Book and DVD have been provided courtesy of Thomas Nelson and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. DVD-Based Study available October 2011 at your favourite bookseller from Thomas Nelson".  

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

What a Marvellous Amish Christmas Story!!!

View suzanne11...jpg in slide showReview of a FABULOUS B0ok "
By Suzanne Woods Fisher

"A Lancaster County Christmas"

If you are looking for a Christmas story, with meaning, look no further.  Suzanne has done it again- this book is full of  emotional turmoil, life changing events and a Christmas that heals and changes the lives of two couples.  Suzanne's ability to involve you in the emotions and feelings of these people is rather uncanny. You want to "walk the walk" with them. At times there are tears, sometimes confusion, once in a while laughter- but most important of all there is the Joy of Christ that shines through this story of two confused young couples who are both seeking something- it appears at first they are of two totally different worlds, but the result is the same - hope and renewal- what they all need,  reigns with the arrival of Christmas. It is a heartwarming tale indeed.  God provides , although in a most unexpected way.

Mattie Riehl, an Amish housewife hopes, with all her heart to give her husband the gift of all gifts for Christmas - news that a new little one is on its way. But, as has happened before, meets with extreme disappointment that this is not to be the case. Sol will not be able to rejoice with her in this pleasure. It is just not to be. Mattie finds this extremely upsetting and hard to accept- aren't all Amish families large- she only has one son!  Why is God doing this to her????? she wonders.

An English couple,  Jaime and her husband, C.J., also are having their personal challenges. Through an appointment with a Doctor, the English and Amish couples cross paths briefly.
When the Doctor requests a favor from Jaime to deliver a forgotten item to their home, little did she realize how much her life would be affected. What a life changing event this Christmas would become!!

Suzanne manages to engage us in the mystery of a missing child lost in a snowstorm . C.J. who just happens to have his search and rescue dog with him, after he and his wife have been  lost in a snowstorm, end up in the Riehl's home to wait out the weather, takes an active part in the drama. The two couple's lives become entwined as neither would have ever dreamed. Lives are changed. Dreams are revised. God gives faith and commitment to those who are totally surprised and changed by the course of events. God uses both couples to see what is really important in life- and Christmas becomes a truly joyous occasion.

This twisting plot keeps you reading late into the night!!! Suzanne's ability to engage you in this truly amazing Amish story is unbelievable. I could NOT put this book down!!
I must not tell you more, as it would spoil the surprises in the book, but I MUST say- READ this book. It is an inspiration to all of us to "wait upon the Lord."  and our needs will be met.
I absolutely loved this book!   Amish fiction being my favorite genre, I have read many stories and honestly believe this is one of the very best!!

About Suzanne:
Her interest in the Amish began with her grandfather, W.D. Benedict, who was raised Plain. She has many, many Plain relatives living in Franklin County, Pennsylvania, and travels back to Pennsylvania, as well as to Ohio, a couple of times each year for research.

Suzanne has a great admiration for the Plain people and believes they provide wonderful examples to the world.  In both her fiction and non-fiction books, she has an underlying theme: You don't have to "go Amish" to incorporate many of their principles--simplicity, living with less, appreciating nature, forgiving others more readily-- into your life.

When Suzanne isn't writing or bragging to her friends about her first new grandbaby (!), she is raising puppies for Guide Dogs for the Blind. To Suzanne's way of thinking, you just can't take life too seriously when a puppy is tearing through your house with someone's underwear in its mouth.

This book was provided  free of charge in exchange for a review, by LitFuse.

To celebrate the release of her first Christmas book, Suzanne Woods Fisher has teamed up with her publisher, Revell, to bring you the "Christmas in September" iPad Giveaway! The winner will be announced on 9/27 at the A Lancaster County Christmas Facebook Party! Details below. Tell your friends and join in the fun (9/7-9/27).

Oh and be sure to follow the blog tour here - many of the bloggers have copies of the book to giveaway! 

Suzanne and Revell will be presenting one merry winner with a Christmas Prize Pack (valued at over $600):

View ALCC_300x...gif in slide show
  • A Brand New iPad 2 with Wi-Fi
  • $25 gift certificate to iTunes
  • A copy of A Lancaster County Christmas

To enter, click here http://litfusegroup.com/blogtours/text/13425768 But, hurry the giveaway ends on 9/26.

But, wait! There's more! The winner will be announced at the A Lancaster County Christmas Facebook Party on 9/27 at Suzanne's author page. During the party she'll be revealing something *BIG* - you won't want to miss it. She'll also be hosting a book chat, trivia contest and giving away a few early Christmas presents! Hope to see you there.

Another Fantastic Read by One of My Favorite Authors, Vannetta Chapman!

An Amish Proposal for Christmas  By Vannetta Chapman Synopsis: Her deepest Christmas wish will bring more than she imagined…in this novel by...