Sunday, February 27, 2011

What The Heart Sees by Kathleen Fuller

This delightful collection of three stories is wonderful when you don't have a lot of time to invest in reading a long novel.

There are three stories and each is around 150 pages long. Because the stories aren't terribly long, there aren't a lot of characters to have to keep straight. A couple of the characters are mentioned from one story to another so I would recommend reading them in the order they are in the book.

"A Miracle for Miriam" from An Amish Christmas

Miriam fell for Seth, but he broke her heart. Years later, after he's nearly killed in an accident, Miriam sees him at a Christmas party and notices something is different about him-not just how he looks, but how he acts. When Seth pursues her, she must decide whether to guard her heart or accept his love.

"A Place of His Own" from An Amish Gathering

When Josiah left Paradise the first time, he didn't even say good-bye. Now he's back, ten years later, and he's changed. Why is he so distant and bitter? Where is the boy who used to be Amanda's best friend? Amanda is learning that there are things even a capable Amish girl can't fix. But can she stand there and watch him walk away...again?

"What the Heart Sees" from An Amish Love

A tragic accident rocks a peaceful Amish community, leaving Ellie Chupp blinded and Christopher Bender's future shattered. But they find love and forgiveness in a place they least expect.

All three stories were wonderful. There was enough information, detail and background for you to feel like you got to know the characters.

Quick, easy reads. Recommended.


My copy of this book was provided by Book Sneeze.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Death of a Chimney Sweep

Join us as we once again head back to the quaint village of Lochdubh in the far North of Scotland. MC Beaton's Hamish Macbeth is once again challenged to find the perpetrator of several murders.

Captain Henry Davenport and his wife Milly have purchased a house in the small town of Drim, which just happens to be on Hamish's beat. Davenport is found one day stuffed up his chimney and the suspicion naturally falls to the chimney sweep who was cleaning the chimney right before the body is discovered. Then the chimney sweep is found dead, apparently from a traffic accident. But was it really an accident?

Hamish uses his intuition and cunning to follow leads that his superiors dismiss to track down a killer.

This is the 27th Hamish Macbeth mystery and I have thoroughly enjoyed them all. Hamish is like an old friend and each book is like he's stopped for a visit to catch me up on his cases. He brings along old friends - Angela Brody, The Currie Sisters, Angus MacDonald, Elspeth Grant - as he attempts to solve the crimes.

Highly recommended.


The Bridge of Peace

The Bridge of Peace is the second book in Cindy Woodsmall's Ada's House series. Although it is a series, the books can be read as stand alone novels. There are references to the first book but everything is explained.

This book's main character is Lena Kauffman, a young Amish schoolteacher with a very noticeable birthmark on her face. As she looks past the stares and whispers she puts all her energy into teaching. But not all of the children are easy to reach and the school board works more against her than with her.

Grey Graber, Lena's childhood friend, is struggling to deal with his wife's distance. She's shut him out of her life and he doesn't know why or how to fix it.

As Grey fights to win his wife back, Lena fights for her job. There are numerous incidents that have been set up to make Lena look incompetent. This book has a bit of violence that isn't really the norm in books of this nature and there is a recurring theme of bullying.

As a stand alone novel this was a very interesting book so I'm sure I'll be reading books one and three also.


I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review

Monday, February 7, 2011

An Unlikely Blessing

An Unlikely Blessing is a heartfelt story about a new pastor and life-long city dweller Alex Armstrong, who reluctantly accepts his first assignment, a two-point parish in the wilds of North Dakota. Hilltop Township, a farming community, blooms from the prairie like a wild pink rose—lovely and prickly all at once, much like the people who live there.

Alex quickly finds that this lovely place is in quiet peril. Farmers are struggling to make ends meet: Jonas Owens, a faithful member of Hilltop parish, is on the brink of losing the farm. Alex believes that part of why God called him to Hilltop was to help turn things around, and steps in with ideas for saving the Owens' land. But can even God's minister help save this rural community?

There are a lot of firsts for the new pastor—the annual Hunter's Breakfast, julebukking (also called Christmas fooling), King Oscar's fish balls, and the melody of the musical saw. And the new, single pastor creates remarkable excitement among the unmarried women in the community. If you could die of hot dish overdose, Alex would be a dead man. Whether performing weddings, counseling his flock, or herding cattle by snowmobile, Alex soon discovers that his new church home has as much to teach him as he will teach them. Day by day, he falls more in love with the people of Hilltop Church. People may leave Hilltop, but Hilltop never leaves them.

This is a great book. It's a little hard keeping the people straight because there are so many characters. I understand the need for a good size cast as this is a series and not a single book. Lots of potential for future stories.

Highly recommended.


My copy of this book was graciously provided by LitFuse Publicity Group for my honest review.