Thursday 28 June 2018

Book Review: The Orphan`s Wish

Book Description

From New York Times bestselling author Melanie Dickerson comes an inspired retelling of the beloved folk tale Aladdin.
Orphaned and alone, Aladdin travels from the streets of his Arab homeland to a strange, faraway place. Growing up in an orphanage, he meets young Lady Kirstyn, whose father is the powerful Duke of Hagenheim. Despite the difference in their stations, Aladdin quickly becomes Kirstyn’s favorite companion, and their childhood friendship grows into a bond that time and opposition cannot break.
Even as a child, Aladdin works hard, learning all he can from his teachers. Through his integrity, intelligence, and sheer tenacity, he earns a position serving as the duke’s steward. But that isn’t enough to erase the shame of being forced to steal as a small child—or the fact that he’s an orphan with no status. If he ever wants to feel equal to his beautiful and generous friend Kirstyn, he must leave Hagenheim and seek his fortune.
Yet once Aladdin departs, Lady Kirstyn becomes a pawn in a terrible plot. Now, Aladdin and Kirstyn must rely on their bond to save her from unexpected danger. But will saving Kirstyn cost Aladdin his newfound status and everything he’s worked so hard to obtain?
An enchanting new version of the well-known tale, The Orphan’s Wish tells a story of courage and loyalty, friendship and love, and reminds us what “family” really means.

My Reflections:

I discovered Melanie Dickerson while I was searching for audiobooks to listen to while my driving with my teenage daughter. I wanted something clean, with adventure and a tad bit of tame romance.
We found The Merchant's daughter and absolutely loved the fairytale storyline and colourful characters. Since that novel, we have hungrily devoured each and every book. When I saw this one up for review, I may or may not have set my alarm to snag it before they were all gone ;-) 

Dickerson's newest novel met my expectations but has not usurped my all-time favourite, "The Beautiful Pretender" That one is by far number one!

The Orphan's Wish is a charming fairy tale with its own uniqueness and flair.
Though it was supposed to be an Aladdin spin-off, I didn't quite get the connection, other than we have a character named Aladin and he has a sidekick. However I did enjoy the story, I breezed through it in record time in fact. I think when my daughter reads it she won't even really notice this fact. This novel is a fantastic read for the YA Christian in your life, especially if they don't go into it thinking of Disney's Aladdin and Jasmine like I did.
I am the girl who watched the Disney Land live theatre production a total of 4 times though!

If you are looking for a book with great historical detail that is vividly written, a sweet story with likable characters, that can be shared with a wide age range I would say PG 13 and up look no further this one is for you! Melanie Dickerson is definitely the Queen of fairy tales. My daughter and I are eagerly awaiting her next release!

Tuesday 26 June 2018

Book Review: A Light On The Hill

From The Back:

". . . must-reads for fans of Biblical and historical fiction."--RT Book Reviews on the Out from Egypt series

Though Israel has found relative peace, Moriyah has yet to find her own. Attempting to avoid the scorn of her community, she's spent the last seven years hiding behind the veil she wears. Underneath her covering, her face is branded with the mark of the Canaanite gods, a shameful reminder of her past captivity in Jericho and an assurance that no man will ever want to marry her.

When her father finds a widower who needs a mother for his two sons, her hopes rise. But when their introduction goes horribly wrong, Moriyah is forced to flee for her life. Seeking safety at one of the newly established Levitical cities of refuge, she is wildly unprepared for the dangers she will face and the enemies--and unexpected allies--she will encounter on her way.
My Reflections:

I didn't think Connilyn Cossette could get even better, but this masterfully written novel has topped all other books penned by this author. 
The subject material is unique, the time-period is intriguing, and the character development in all areas is spot on! It is evident many hours of research went into the planning of this book, the attention to detail is exquisite! This book is the first of this new series, and I am eagerly anticipating the next installment.

Moriyah is such an endearing character. She has experienced many trials in her life, these trials have made her compassionate, strong and courageous against the daily hardships she had endured. I loved traveling through the many cities and lush lands. It was a fast-paced escape from her father's vineyard towards possible safety, and even though the danger and heart-stopping escape we glimpse Moriyah's steadfast commitment to God and her ability to adapt. I also enjoyed being steeped in the culture and cadence of the era. I felt a real connection throughout the story, not only to the characters but also to the land and setting. It was all so authentic.

It's no secret that I am a huge fan of Connilyn Cossette, her books seem to get better and better as she progresses into her writing career. If you are searching for a unique book for those summer vacations, look no further this is your book!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

Connilyn Cossette

When she is not homeschooling her two sweet kids (with a full pot of coffee at hand), bestselling author Connilyn Cossette is scribbling notes on spare paper, mumbling about her imaginary friends, and reading obscure, out-of-print history books. There is...
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Friday 22 June 2018

Book Review: A Chance At Forever

From the Back:

Determined to protect the children of Teaville, Kansas, from the bullying she experienced as a child, Mercy McClain finds fulfillment working at the local orphanage and serving on the school board. When Aaron Firebrook, the worst of her childhood bullies, petitions the board for a teaching position, she's dead set against his getting the job.

Aaron knows he deserves every bit of Mercy's mistrust, but he's returned to his hometown a changed man and is seeking the forgiveness of those he wronged. He doesn't expect Mercy to like him, but surely he can prove he now has the children's best interests at heart.

Will resentment and old wounds hold them back, or can Mercy and Aaron overcome the past in time to battle the threats against the future of the town's orphans?
My Reflections:
This is the final book of the Teaville Moral Society series. In it, we delve into not only the red light district and helping others better themselves, but also the subject of bullying.
Everyone most likely has experienced the devastating after-effects of bullying. It can devastate self-worth and confidence it is all too common in our society, and I found this topic a great platform to craft a story around. Melissa Jagears always manifests original characters. They are usually not the norm and leave me amazed and entertained all at the same time.

Mercy McClain is no stranger to hurt. Her childhood has been shaped by the wordsand actions of Aaron Firebrook. His hurtful behaviour and vicious verbal attacks still haunt her even as an adult.
Mercy has come a long way with a job she adores. She relishes the ability to have an impact in the lives of children at the orphanage. She has finally left the past where it should be, behind her, that is until Aaron Firebrook walks right back into her life.

Aaron has returned home a different man, he is determined to show the world his improved self Will he be able to shuck the layers of harm he has inflicted?
Is there really a second chance at new beginnings?
Aaron is determined to amend for his past and show Mercy that he is genuinely sorry for his youthful actions.

I have thoroughly enjoyed each and every book in this series. I have read each and every instalment with anticipation I'm sad the journey of this series has come to an end.
Jagears writes with such clarity and depth. I enjoy how she weaves her stories around characters and events, a true masterpiece. Well done. I am eagerly anticipating a new series!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

Melissa Jagears

Carol Award-winning author Melissa Jagears is a homeschooling mom who writes Christian historical romance into the wee hours of the night. She's the author of the Unexpected Brides series, the Teaville Moral Society series, and Love by the Letter, a...
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Thursday 21 June 2018

Book Review: The Road Home

From the Back:

As the sun began to rise, Lena Rose leaned against the cool pane of the bus window and gazed out at the familiar landscape of her life. I'm leaving my family and everything I know behind. She sighed, trying to keep her composure.
Grieving the death of her Amish parents and the separation from her nine close-knit siblings, Lena Rose Schwartz consoles herself that her new life in Lancaster County won't be forever. Surely someday soon she will return to her beloved Michigan settlement, including her beau. But even as she holds on to hope for a reunion with those she loves most, she discovers that Lancaster holds charms of its own. Will she find the courage to open her heart to other possibilities?

My Reflections: 
Beverly Lewis is my all time go to authour, she is queen Amish fiction. Her newest novel "The Road Home" is another product of her penmanship. This new novel is another example of Lewis's ability to push readers from heart-wrenching despair to shouts of pure joy and the promise of a new beginning. 
One of the many qualities of a good writer is engaging the reader with a story that has depth and characters that one can relate and connect with. Basically, you want to be immersed into the story. I can attest that this is the case with this author's works. I always feel all these things when I dive headlong into a novel penned by Lewis. Her characters are tender, raw and at the same time, strong and determined to do what they feel is right and true. 
This leads me to the main character Lena Rose Schwartz, heartbroken, scared and on a journey that would crush most. Lena rises above her circumstances and she does this with grace and love, she is a true inspiration! I also enjoyed all the supporting characters. Her siblings were the perfect blend of diversity within a large family. This made me wish that I had a large close family! 
If you are looking for a warm and welcoming story look no further, this is your perfect summertime read! 
I can't wait until fall (2018) when her new book "The First Love" releases. Perfect back to school fodder!
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

Beverly Lewis

Beverly Lewis, born in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch country, has more than 17 million books in print. Her stories have been published in 12 languages and have regularly appeared on numerous bestseller lists, including the New York Times and USA...
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