Book Review: ‘The Confession’ by Robert Whitlow

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In Holt Douglas’s line of work, there’s nothing sweeter than a confession of guilt.

Assistant D.A. Holt Douglas makes his living exposing lies and sending criminals to jail in Ashley County, Georgia. His job is always easier when defendants, instead of remaining silent, blame someone else or try to excuse their actions. With a confession in his hand, Holt knows a guilty plea will soon follow.

But lurking in Holt’s past is a dark secret that could end his successful career and possibly his relationship with Angelina, his hoped for fiancé.

 

My mother enjoyed this book.  It didn’t take her any time at all to finish it.  She told me she had read another book by him, and she enjoyed that one as well.

I, however, had a very difficult time getting even half-way through this book.  In fact, I didn’t even finish it.  It’s full of info dumps, and slow pacing.  I’d like to read it more for the relationship Holt has with one of the other female characters (not Angelina), but I don’t want to deal with the other stuff.

It had its moments.  At least I got as far as I did.  It’s a pretty long book (49 chapters), but they’re short.  It’s an easy read, if you don’t mind info dumps (like my mother).

It’s probably more interesting than I think it is. I’ll just take my mom’s word for it.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program.

 

Book Review: ‘Seagrass Pier’ by Colleen Coble

_240_360_Book.1264.coverElin Summerall didn’t know why she was having nightmares, until she realized they weren’t hers.  After receiving a heart transplant, she discovered they were from the donor.  Now, what did these nightmares mean?

If you like Nicholas Sparks, you’ll like Colleen Coble.  There’s romance and suspense, and it takes place in a summer home on the beach.  I liked that is was an easy, enjoyable, relaxing read.  It’s a book that I would pick up to pass the time.  There was no challenge of faith in the book.  Coble mentions God a couple of times, but it didn’t really have a faith-based message.

I would recommend this book to those who need something to read.  It was entertaining, the writing was simple, there was nothing complex about this at all.  The story was very easy to understand.  But after you get to know the characters, there are no surprises.  You knew how they were, and they stayed that way.

There is a side story that ended without an answer.  I wonder if there is going to be a second book to go farther with it.  If not, I’m not sure what the point of it was.

Overall, I would give it four stars.

Thank you to BookLook Bloggers for allowing me to read this for free in exchange for a review.

Book Review: ‘Love Skip Jump’ by Shelene Bryan

_240_360_Book.1192.coverLove- Have the right view of God, and love others as Christ loves us

Skip- Skip one thing (a meal, a movie, etc.) and give that money to help others

Jump- Jump in without any doubt, knowing that this is what God wants you to do, and trust in Him

If you have a heart to go and help people, then this is the book for you.

In “Love Skip Jump,” Shelene talks about having a tug on her heart to go to Africa and help the people, saying, “Yes,” and why it was the best decision she could have made.  She talks about her organization that she started to for people here in the United States and around the world, called Skip1.org.

The book was perfect for those of you who are givers (like me).  It made me want to give more of my time, resources, and whatever I have available.  The Bible does say it’s better to give than to receive, and I wholeheartedly believe that.  I like to see people’s reactions when they’re given something that they really need, knowing I’m expecting nothing in return.

Thank you to BookLook Bloggers for the free book.

Book Review: ‘The Romance Of Religion’ by Dwight Longenecker

 

_240_360_Book.1114.coverI don’t know where to begin with this book. It’s good, there are many things that he writes that would be great quotes.

There’s a lot of alliteration, and a lot to take in. I found myself nodding at a lot of the things he said, but I also found myself putting it down for days to allow myself to digest it all. There’s a lot to learn, and some of it is too hard to get the first time reading it. His writing style reminds me of something “old”, like Emerson (though “old” is subjective).

It’s not a bad book. In fact, I really liked a lot of it. It’s just hard to read and it takes a while to think about what you just read. It’s a book that can’t be read in one sitting, and it isn’t for everyone. Just read a page or two to see if it’s for you.

Even though it was hard to read (for me), what he said was spot on and thought provoking. He showed me things I had never really thought about, and said it in a way that stuck with me.

Thanks to Book Look Bloggers for giving it away for free in return for a review. I enjoyed it!

Book Review: ‘Snapshot’ by Lis Wiehl

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Snapshot is a fictional story based on a real picture.

I’d give it four stars.

Mom and I both read this book in two days (each), probably because nothing else is going on in our lives. But it’s fairly easy to read. Most of the chapters are short (two to three pages), which is probably why there are 37 of them.

Anyway. This is a page turner, one of those, “just one more chapter” type of books. Lis does a great job of giving you just enough information for that part of the book, and answers to one question that makes you ask ten new ones.

That ending though… what a dissatisfying conclusion. The last two chapters really brought the story down for us. I can’t say much without giving anything away. All I can say is, “What?” and, “We knew that.”

On a side note, a Christian company distributed the book. The only Christian part of it is the presence of a minister, and the lack of swear words. Not that I mind about the swear words part, I’m just saying.

Also, what Christian book has the word whore in it?

Well, thanks Booksneeze for the free book.  It’s been a while since I’ve actually read a fiction book.  It was a nice change.

Book Review: ‘Forgiveness’ by Matthew West

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Matthew West has always been a story-teller, through music though.  “Next Thing You Know,” off of his History album, is a story about himself.  But for his Into The Light album, he decided to go a different route.

He had to have surgery that kept him silent for a year.  A singer who had to keep quiet…that’s rough.  But after that year, he got right back on the saddle.  It never brought him down, and out of it, came his album, “Something To Say.”  I’m sure that sitting quiet for a year puts a new perspective on things, makes you sit with yourself and think.  A lot.

I missed Matthew the first chance I got to see him.  As I walked into the venue, he was finishing up his last song, and he walked off stage.  I was quite bummed.  But, many years later, I got the chance to see him at TBN in Nashville (Hendersonville), all by himself.  Boy was I overjoyed.  I was finally going to see him in concert.  I didn’t know what to expect at first, but then I found out that this “concert” was for his newest album, which was not out yet.

Matthew decided to get other people’s stories.  He looked through countless e-mails, and the stories that touched him the most, he made songs about them.  And he put them on his album.  Yes, his whole Into The Light album is full of true stories, in song form.  In comes the book.

This book tells those stories.  “Behind the songs” type of thing.  “Forgiveness” is the name of a song on the album, but it is also his first single, and the first chapter of the book.  The story behind that song is about a drunk driver who killed this mother’s daughter. While the drunk driver is on his way to jail, the mom asks that he get a shorter sentence.  Wow, talk about forgiveness!

Matthew tells the true story, sent in by the person, then he talks about the story, his thoughts and what the Bible says in relation to the story, and then at the end he writes about how he wrote the song that goes along with it.  So, you can see the process he went through as he wrote for the album.  At the end of the book, he writes about his own story, the story that goes along with “Next Thing You Know.”  He is a preacher’s kid, but he never accepted Jesus until he was thirteen, sitting in the den flipping through the channels on the t.v.  Looking for a baseball game, he stopped to watch Billy Graham.

This isn’t the only book he’s written.  He another one, “The Story of Your Life” that goes along with his album of the same name.  That album is also filled with true stories from people who have e-mailed him.

It’s a very short, small book.  But it’s packed with humor (Matthew is quite the funny guy), lessons to be learned, and chains to be broken.  There is a story in there for everyone: those who have lost, those who are alone, those who are addicts, those who feel unloved.  I’d give it five stars just for those reasons alone.

If you want to learn how others have received and given forgiveness, or you just like true stories, sign up for BookSneeze and get it for free.  It’s well worth reading.

Book Review: ‘Gods At War’ by Kyle Idleman

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Kyle Idleman wrote a book called, “Not A Fan.”  It was a t.v. show that Mom and I started watching before we found out it was a book.  I saw “Gods At War” in a magazine for LifeWay, and when I went over to Booksneeze and I saw that it was available, I knew I had to read it.  I didn’t realize it was by Kyle, so when I found that out, I knew it was a sign.

In this book, “Gods At War,” Kyle talks about all of the gods in this world that we have: money, sex, food, achievement, the list goes on.  Idolatry isn’t an issue–it is the issue he says.

I went back and forth with my feelings on this book.  At first I felt like he was telling the reader they were a bad person.  But, the more I read, the more I realized that wasn’t what he was saying at all.  He was merely bringing to the reader’s attention that these things can happen, will happen, or is happening.  It’s easy to worship things that bring you immediate results, but in the end, are the results what you strive for?  Do they take you away from what is really important like family and health?  Kyle lets you know that there is always a way out, and he shows it to you.

This book is very good.  It has shown me things that I need to take care of and be aware of in my own life that I didn’t realize needed to be taken care of.  It convicts, but not in a way that makes you feel…bad.  He brings things into the light, shows you how to take care of it, and lets you do the rest.

I would give this book five stars.  It’s easy to read, it’s fun to read (he’s a funny guy), he’s real and honest, and I got a lot out of it.

Read this book if you’re struggling, with anything.  You don’t have to be a Christian to read this, it’s for anyone (just don’t mind the fact that Kyle does include scriptures and Jesus’ name).

(P.S. I’m pretty sure the theme song for this book would be “Battle” by Chris August.  Just sayin’.)

 

Book Review: ‘Wisdom Meets Passion’ by Dan Miller and Jared Angaza

This book talks about how the “older” generation has wisdom, and the “younger” generation has passion (I put quotes around those words because, well, some people fit better in one than the other).  It’s a book about how these two generations should work together to enhance their lives.  Wisdom should learn how to have the passion, and passion should learn the wisdom.

To be quite honest, I was bored.

I really enjoyed Dan’s part of the writing.  I don’t know if it’s because of what he wrote, or how he wrote it, but I did enjoy it.  Jared on the other hand, not so much.  I was just bored.  I think it was the way he wrote.  He probably has some really good things to say, but he didn’t present it in a way that spoke to me, personally.

It’s kind of hard to rate this.  I liked half of it, but not enough to read it as fast as I would other books.

I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. 

Book Review: ‘One Big Thing’ by Phil Cooke

What comes easy to you?  What do you love?  What drives you crazy?  Three questions that Cooke asks to help you find what you are most passionate about, what your One Big Thing is.

This book found me where I am.

Phil Cook has written a book suitable for everyone.  Those who know, and those who have no idea.  And he speaks from both sides of the line.  Remembering what it was like to not know, he speaks to those people fluently.  On the other hand, he speaks to people who already know in a very straightforward way.  He knows how to communicate with everyone, and in such a way so that we all know what’s ahead of us, and remember what we went through.  It’s very honest, and he gives great examples for whatever he is writing about.  It just makes sense.  When he talks about how to go after your dream, he shows you how to get started.  He gives you the tips and the ways through the industry of whatever you want to get into, and he makes it seem very possible to succeed.  Very encouraging.

I personally love this book.  The writing was very easy to read and understand, yet it held some weight to it (sometimes, easy to read books just seem too…easy).  The questions and topics Cooke brought up are very thought-provoking, and they make you look at your life, quite deeply, to help you get closer to your One Big Thing (or rather, what you’re most passionate about).  He even adds in personal stories, which adds to the effect it had on me.  This book definitely showed me that I am on the right path.  Even from the beginning, when he was talking about college, I knew it was going to be a good book.  And it was.

It’s a very personal book.  It’s like spending $15 for a one-on-one “finding your passion” session, that might actually cost $150 (thanks to Booksneeze, I got it for free).  It seems as though he is talking right to you, and not anyone else.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and I definitely recommend getting it.  Even if you do know what your passion is, and even if you are already living it out, it might help you in some way.  Or, it might just be a book you read when you’re bored.  Either way, give it a try.