The Prophetess

The Prophetess: Deborah's Story (Daughters of the Promised Land)Title: The Prophetess
Author: Jill Eileen Smith
Publisher: Revell
ISBN: 978-0-8007-2035-3

“Each one of us must seek Adonai’s help and cry out to Him to free us from Sisera, from Jabin, our tormentors,” Jill Eileen Smith writes in her historical fiction novel, The Prophetess: Deborah’s Story.

~ What ~
This three-hundred-and-sixty-eight-page paperback targets those who enjoy enhanced versions of Biblical stories involving women. Containing no profanity or explicit sexual scenes, the topics of rape, murder, war, and death may not be appropriate for immature readers. An author’s note and biography, as well as acknowledgments and advertisements, complete the book.

Second in the Daughters of the Promised Land series, this retold story is taken from Judges 4 in the Old Testament when Deborah was the judge of Israel, Sisera was murdering her kin, Barak warred with him, and Jael got revenge. Using these four characters with a backdrop of several others not mentioned in the Bible, it focuses on repentance and having faith and trust in God.

After twenty years of praying to be released from the Caannanites’ cruelties, the Prophetess Deborah sees visions of salvation by God. Questioning her marriage and daughter’s persistence, she finds strength in the Almighty both politically and personally.

~ Why ~
With the story based on what little is known of Deborah, the historical reenactment adds the personal strain and emotional frustrations between families as Israel is told not to worship other gods. I like how Smith’s research helps the reader visualize how customs, beliefs, and relationships were in 1100 BC.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like fictionalized Bible stories may pass on this one as the author has used liberties to enhance the story with many added characters. I found the beginning rather slow and confusing due to the myriad of names, but the novel did become a captivating read.

~ Who ~
Bestselling author Smith has written ten books about the lives of Biblical women from King David’s three wives and the wives of three Israeli patriarchs to the love of King Solomon and this new series of the daughters of the Promise Land.

~ Wish ~
With a plethora of characters, it would be helpful having a list at the beginning of the book.

~ Want ~
If you enjoy learning about Biblical Old Testament women in a fictionalized setting based on Scripture, this is an engaging, historical story. For those that know the Bible, it is a viable rendition of the prophetess, equally focusing on Jael’s role in Sisera’s demise.

Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars.

Thanks to Revell for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinions.

This review will be posted on Revell, DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, LinkedIn, Godinterest, Pinterest, Google+, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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The Book Club Network ~ Advertising Promotion!

I have been asked by TBCN to post this for those followers of mine that are independent authors, writers, publicists, or small publishers. Since I write two articles monthly for their magazine, review some of their offered books, and participate in their monthly chat, I can attest this is an upright, Christian website that helps promote family-focused books. 

PLEASE CHECK OUT BELOW, & IF INTERESTED, TELL FRED CONNY SENT YOU!
————

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ATTENTION INDEPENDENT AUTHORS & SMALL PUBLISHERS!
We will provide a 90 day promotion for $500 instead of $1,500 for five authors 

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IF INTERESTED, CONTACT FRED, & TELL HIM CONNY SENT YOU!

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Fred@bookfunmagazine.com
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Members of the ACFW, AWSA, and the CBA
“We reserve the right to do more than we promise.”

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Little Felted Dogs

Little Felted Dogs: Easy Projects for Making Adorable PupsTitle: Little Felted Dogs
Author: Saori Yamazaki
Publisher: Potter Craft
ISBN: 978-0-553-33796-5

“Needle felting is a simple craft that basically requires only a single tool: the felting needle,” Saori Yamazaki writes at the beginning of her book, Little Felted Dogs: Easy Projects for Making Adorable Pups.

~ What ~
This small rectangular hardbound with one-hundred-and-twelve pages targets those who enjoy making animal figurines with wool. Containing over two dozen dog designs, the book begins with an introduction and needle felting basics with essential tools.

Offering tips on how to work with wool, construction of the stuffed animals, and advanced techniques, photographs with numbered instructions are included. The species range from the Bulldog, Toy Poodle, Shih Tus, Pug, and Chihuahua to the Bull Terrier, Siberian Husky, Border Collie, and Irish Setter to name a few.

Each project has a photograph of the completed animal, a material and supplies list, numbered sentence directions, and a diagram with measurements and tips with notes.

~ Why ~
Although the book is small, it is full of ways to use the wool to make these canines. I like that the completed photographs include close-up shots showing details of the dogs features, colors, and wool placement.

~ Why Not ~
Those who are not crafty or artistic may want to shy away from this do-it-yourself book. Others may be disappointed their canine is not depicted as a project in the book.

~ Who ~
The author of several books in Japanese and English regarding felting, Yamazaki lives in Tokyo with her three dogs.

~ Wish ~
I wish the author had included the beagle so I could make a stuffed animal of our dog. It would be nice to have books like this on other animals or objects.

~ Want ~
If you are into felting and making crafts, this is a fun book that covers twenty-four stuffed dogs to make out of wool.

Thanks to the Blogging for Books for offering this book to read and review for my honest opinion.

This review will be posted on the Blogging for Books, DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Pinterest, Godinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.

Grammarly was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under ***** Great - A Keeper, If You Borrow It, Give It Back!, Animals / Pets, Arts & Crafts, Book Review, Home / Garden / Food

Holy Bible

Title: Holy Bible
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-8875-0

“Your princess will love learning about God and His special love for her as she reads and learns the Bible each day,” the back of the gift book states.

~ What ~
Targeted toward girls six to ten years old who want their special “princess” Bible that is different from anyone else, this hardbound has a purple cover with five half pearl looking beads embedded on a sparkly heart-designed crown and glitter swirls. Using the International Children’s Version of the Holy Bible, it is 1,312 pages long.

With cream-colored highlights against purple backgrounds, several pages are inserted throughout the book. The beginning includes ownership, family history, why read the Bible, and a time line pages. Other sections have added notes of Jesus’s love, Bible verses to memorize, and how to pray, forgive, be a testimony, and study Scriptures. The ending has names of God, Jesus’s miracles and His disciples, Biblical children, and maps.

~ Why ~
With the Bible being the most important book in history, this selection is a nice option for the young girl who wants to read it daily, take it to church, or show to others. I like that its version has bold chapter numbers and topics.

~ Why Not ~
Some may not like that the print is small, and the paper is thin, so words can be seen through the pages. Others may not care for the Bible version with its translation.

~ Who ~
The Bible is copyrighted by a division of Thomas Nelson.

~ Wish ~
A fan of the King James Version, I wish other translations besides this one were offered.

~ Want ~
If a young girl is into having a “cute and pretty” Bible to carry around, this choice may be considered, hoping she would open it often to read and study God’s Word. For girls who like purple “princess” products and want a pretty cover, it would make a nice gift.

Thanks to Book Look Bloggers for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinion.

This review will be posted on BookLook Bloggers, DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

 

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* CONTEST * 2 Baby Pacifier Clips

Sanda Lea Pacifier Clips - Excellent Baby Shower Gift (2 Pack)

WIN FROM SANDA LEE
1 SET OF 2 PACIFIER CLIPS!

Review Teaser: “Significantly reduce the amount of time your baby’s pacifier spends on the floor,” the product description states online.

SIMPLE steps to enter this 2-day contest

1. Follow my blog if you do not do so already.
2. Click on the headline ** CONTEST ** to be sure you are on the Reply page.
3. Post in the “LEAVE A REPLY” section below why you want to win this product (could be funny, clever, serious, or the words “I want” since the winner is randomly chosen).
4. Follow one of these social media links:

Pinterest:
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5. If you are the winner, please consider posting a review on Amazon regarding what you thought of the product.

This is a FAST CONTEST ending SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 7th , 2016 @ 6 PM PST so follow the requirements above and try for a chance to win this product that is ordered with a free code from Amazon and directly to you *winner pays shipping unless an Amazon Prime member)! Winner’s shipping address must be in the U.S.A.

I read & reviewed this product – it’s a 5 STAR!
Here is my review: https://connywithay.wordpress.com/2016/01/29/sanda-lee-pacifier-clips/

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The Salt Mines Mystery

The Salt Mines Mystery (Thunder and Lightning Series) (Volume 2)Title: The Salt Mines Mystery
Author: Aaron M. Zook, Jr.
Publisher: Bold Vision Books
ISBN:  978-0692435366

“How are we ever going to get out of these salt mines with our friends?” Gabe wonders in Aaron M. Zook, Jr.’s children’s book, The Salt Mines Mystery.

~ What ~
The second book in the Thunder and Lightning series, this two-hundred-and-seventy-six-page paperback targets ten- to thirteen-year-old readers, especially boys who like suspense and mystery. With no profanity, topics of injury, human trafficking, violence, and torture may not be appropriate for young readers.

In this continuing series written in first person, twelve-year-old Gabe and his older brother take a family vacation with their parents and two well-trained dogs to Germany’s Berchtesgaden Salt Mine Cavern.

Joining their four friends, the boys and dogs get separated underground and become captive by a rogue group who sells children into slavery. While they try to escape through the maze of tunnels to uncover The Dagger, the ruthless kingpin, they deal with poisonous gas, flooded chambers, sea rations, guns, and an Australian to uncover the truth.

~ Why ~
With the backdrop of the dangerous German caves, the book pulls young readers down dark crevices as it explains the terrain and conditions underground. Containing a few references to prayer and God, it shows how trust and faith in friends are important and necessary, even when it involves bickering between brothers.

~ Why Not ~
Due to the boys’ ongoing treasure hunt and past experiences, reading the first book would be recommended. Some readers may think the tale is tedious as it involves many characters and challenges. Being longer than the prior book, at least the over-fifty chapters are relatively short.

~ Who ~
Retired U.S. Army colonel, Zook has written the series’ prior novel and many articles in magazines, seminars, and books. He and his wife live in Texas.

~ Want ~
If your son or a preteen likes to read clean, engaging adventure stories that also are educational, this may be a viable one that will take more time to read than its predecessor while leaving the third book to anticipate.

Thanks to the Book Club Network, the author, and Bold Vision Books for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinions.

This review will be posted on the Book Club Network and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, LinkedIn, Godinterest, Pinterest, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

 

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The Play-Along Bible

The Play-Along Bible: Imagining God's Story through Motion and PlayTitle: The Play-Along Bible
Author: Bob Hartman
Illustrator: Susie Poole
Publisher: Tyndale Kids
ISBN: 978-1-4964-0864-8

“All you need to do is to read each line, and then invite your child to do the suggested action or repeat the suggested words along with you,” Bob Hartman writes in the introduction to his children’s book, The Play-Along Bible.

~ What ~
At one-hundred-and-twelve pages, this hardbound book targets children ages three to six years old who like to be read to with visual actions. With no scary scenes except hungry lions, stormy seas, and Jesus’s crucifixion, it contains fifty short stories from the Bible. With one side of the page being a colorful illustration, the other side has the story covered in a few paragraphs with colored instructions of hand or body movements to enhance the topic. Four special Bible verses to remember are written on the last page.

From Creation, Noah, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David, and Daniel in the Old Testament to Jesus’s birth, parables, miracles, crucifixion, and resurrection in the New Testament, this book covers the major stories in the Bible. As the adult reads along, both he or she and the child can act out and do the suggested hand and body movements to the storyline.

~Why ~
This book makes Biblical stories come alive in the child’s mind as they act out different movements. I love how it reinforces the Scriptures while having the child physically portray what is happening. The child can put to memory the story by actions that are repeated. Including Christ on the cross and his death are described appropriately without detailed explanation.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like Bible stories or learning about God will not want this energetic book. However, it is a great way to have a child interact while learning.

~ Who ~
A pastor and storyteller, Hartman is an author who has sold over one million copies of his Christian-based books for children. Illustrator of books, cards, and gifts, Poole is the founder of Pupfish, a line of children’s books that promote God.

~ Wish ~
With our children exercising and engaging less, this book is highly needed, and I wish there were more like it that encourage movement and interaction.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for an interactive book to read at Sunday school, for a group setting, or individually to stimulate physical movement, this is the perfect answer.

Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on my unbiased, honest opinion.

This review will be posted on Tyndale House Publishers, Deeper Shopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Jesus Today

Jesus Today Devotions for KidsTitle: Jesus Today
Author: Sarah Young, adapted by Tama Fortner
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-8875-0

“You can talk with Jesus about everything, wherever you are and whatever is happening,” Sarah Young reminds young readers in the introduction to her children’s book, Jesus Today: Devotions for Kids, that is adapted by Tama Fortner.

~ What ~
At three-hundred-and-sixty-eight pages, this hardbound book with an embossed cover targets children ages six to ten years old. With no scary scenes, it is meant to be a daily devotional about Jesus and the Word of God. Using several versions of the Holy Bible, mainly the International Children’s Bible is referenced. It comes with an attached blue marker ribbon.

Written as if Jesus is writing to the reader, presumably a young 1st to 5th grader, there are 150 devotions followed by a Scripture index and the author’s biography. Each devotion is numbered (no date) and covers two pages. Interspersed are pages of written out Bible verses or short sayings by famous writers, authors, and preachers.

With the devotions worded in first person of Jesus Christ, there are usually a few paragraphs regarding the topic, followed by three to four written out Bible verses related to it. Titled subjects range from the power of prayer, trusting in Him, and God being with us always to love, peace, second chances, hope, and self-control to name a few. Each devotion is meant to promote having a closer, intimate relationship with the Creator.

~Why ~
Parents want to promote reading the Bible daily to our young ones, but it is hard when we do not want to push or make it mandatory. With this book, it helps the child consider that Jesus is with them always, throughout the day. I like that it focuses only on Christ and little else.

~ Why Not ~
With some of the devotionals complex in spiritual thought and doctrine, the younger readers may not comprehend what the topic is trying to convey. Those who do not have a personal relationship with God may not understand why it is necessary to spend time daily with God.

~ Who ~
The author of books that have sold fifteen million copies worldwide, Young focuses on devotionals for both children and adults. Having lived in Japan and Australia, she and her husband currently live in the United States.

~ Wish ~
Having read Young’s other books, my only concern is that this one does not mention how she received visions and revelations writing these types of books, and I question the process. Granted the words are uplifting and urge one to know God in depth, it may not be in depth doctrinally.

~ Want ~
If your elementary school-aged child is asking for a book to read as a devotional, this may be a viable option.

Thanks to Book Look Bloggers for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on my unbiased, honest opinion.

This review will be posted on Book Look Bloggers, Deeper Shopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Google+, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

 

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Filed under **** Good - Will Be Glad to Pass On to Others, Book Review, Childrens, Christian

The Frog that Lost Its Croak

The Frog That Lost His CroakTitle: The Frog that Lost Its Croak
Author: Anne Toole
Illustrator: Unstated
Publisher: Outskirts Press
ISBN: 978-1-4787-6413-7

“The little frog was very sad.
He had lost his croak and no friends he had,
Because bragging about his wonderful croak had made the other frogs mad.”
Anne Toole writes in her children’s book, The Frog that Lost Its Croak.

~ What ~
This unnumbered twenty-six-page paperback targets children ages three to seven years old or those learning to read. With no scary scenes, it is a story about a frog that has lost its voice and learns how not to be boastful. With black writing against white boxed-backgrounds on one side of the pages, the opposite sides usually contain crisp, colorful illustrations that follow the storyline.

In this short tale told in rhyme, a loud, noisy frog can no longer croak. His father suggests he talk to his mom, who tells him to take some time, rest his voice, and his croak will come back. He becomes sad when he recognizes he has no friends because he was always bragging about the noises he could make. It is when he listens to the new sounds around him that he realizes he was focusing on himself, and his voice comes back.

~ Why ~
This is a light-hearted reminder that teaches children not to tout their horn about what they can do but stop and listen to others around them, noticing their qualities and characteristics. I like how the story flows and engages young readers through the eyes of a frog that is taught an important lesson.

~ Why Not ~
Although charming, some of the rhymes are a stretch if read out loud, but they work overall. There are quite a few punctuation errors throughout the pages that should be corrected.

~ Who ~
After teaching first grade for thirty years, Toole retired, only to work as an ESOL teacher for three years. Having written other children’s books, she travels extensively and lives in South Carolina. No information is offered regarding illustrator.

~ Wish ~
With the Amazon site being so vague and uninformative, it would be nice to explain the story in detail and give the author and illustrator’s biographies. Having cadence in rhyming would make the book easier to read.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a story that teaches not to be boastful and think about others, this rhyming tale of a frog learning a wise lesson would be enjoyed.

Thanks to Bookpleasures and Outskirts Press for offering this book to review for my honest opinion.

This review will be posted on Bookpleasures and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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* CONTEST * Land of And ~ 1 Free Book Giveaway!

Land of AND

WIN KATIE MULLAY’S BOOK,
LAND OF AND

ONE WINNER will be randomly selected to win FREE from the author
this recently released book.

REVIEW  TEASER: “I“As our new pals now leave,
I’m so happy that we’ve
Shown them what acceptance can mean,”
Katie Mullaly rhymes in her children’s book, Land of And.

SIMPLE steps to enter this 3-day contest

1.  Follow my blog if you do not do so already.
2. Click on the headline ** CONTEST ** to be sure you are on the Reply page.
3. Post in the “LEAVE A REPLY” section below why you want to read this exciting book (could be funny, clever, serious, or the words “I want” since the winner is randomly chosen).
4. Like this social media site on the internet.

https://www.facebook.com/Yabbut-Friends-618636471600704/

5. If you are the winner, please consider posting a review regarding what you thought of the book on at least 2 websites.

This is a FAST CONTEST ending WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 3rd, 2016 after 6 PM PST so follow the requirements above and try for a chance to win a book that is mailed from the publisher directly to you!Winner’s shipping address must be in the U.S.A.

I read & reviewed this book, & it’s a 4 STAR!
Here is my review: https://connywithay.wordpress.com/2016/01/23/land-of-and/

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