Category Archives: Book Review

Russia Rising

Title: Russia Rising
Author: Mark Hitchcock
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.
ISBN: 978-1-4964-2807-3

“The Bear is rising to take its place among the cast of characters in the final drama of the ages,” Mark Hitchcock writes in his book, Russia Rising: Tracking the Bear in Bible Prophecy.

~ What ~
This two hundred-and-forty-page paperback targets those interested in Biblical end time prophecy and how it relates to Russia. Using mainly the New Living Translation of the Holy Bible, other versions referenced are the KJV and NASB. There are ten chapters, ending with three appendixes, notes, and the author’s biography.

In this informative read, the author dissects the Bible’s Ezekiel 38 to 39 in current time, correlating it to the end times of the king of the North trying to crush Israel and the Antichrist making his seven-year pact of peace. The chapters explain the final four kings, the rise and fall of Russia compared to the bear in Daniel, and the triumvirate of Russia, Iran, and Turkey to name a few. Also discussed is Rosh, Gog, the Hidden Imam, and a prophetic checklist. The ending has the verses in Ezekiel written out, a section by Dr. John F. Walvoord, and common questions related to Russia, the Middle East, and the end of days.

~ Why ~
This book is well-written without being confusing when it comes to Biblical prophecy about Russia during the end times. I appreciated the explanation of Rosh being Russia, Gog is a northern commander, Tarshish’s possible location, and Putin’s “vertical of power” by stealing land, seizing assets, slaughtering, and stifling Western power. According to the Bible, Hitchcock does not mark a day or person in stone regarding the future but offers scenarios, background information, and circumstances happening today that could be apropos to the topic. Including the eternal plan of salvation is key to readers who are unbelievers.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ or are not concerned we could be in the end times may not appreciate this book. Others may disagree with the writer’s pre-tribulation rapture stance (I am one who agrees with the author).

~ Wish ~
With so much happening globally every day, I wish this book could contain up-to-the-minute additions of the day-to-day news we hear that further links the puzzle pieces together when Christ returns. Believing the rapture is imminent, I hope readers take the book seriously.

~ Want ~
If you are trying to figure out the end times Biblically and are unsure of the main players in the world, especially Russia, this read displays it clearly, offering several current variables.

Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. for this complimentary book that I am reviewing freely.

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!, Book Review, Christian, Non-Fiction

If You’re Happy and You Know It

If You're Happy and You Know It (A Sing-Along Book)Title: If You’re Happy and You Know It: A Sing-Along Book
Illustrator: Barbara Szepesi Szucs
Publisher: Zonderkidz
ISBN: 978-0-310-75922-5

If You’re Happy and You Know It encourages children to CLAP, STOMP, and shout HOO-RAY as they celebrate being happy in this delightful addition to the beloved Sing-Along series,” the back jacket states in this book.

~ What ~
This unnumbered twenty-page board book with a padded front cover and rounded corners targets ages four to eight-year-old children. With no scary scenes, there are full-page colorful illustrations by the artist on all pages.

Containing the well-known repetitive song about being happy, the verses include a singing call to action of clapping hands, stomping feet, and shouting hoo-ray. The last page has the music sheet of the song with the words.

~ Why ~
While most of us already know this song well, it is fun to sing while reading the book to young children to get them to interact with others while learning parts of their body. I love the adorable illustrations of animals on a playground, carousel, swing set, teeter-totter, jungle gym, sand box, slide, and playing together. Including unusual creatures such as pandas, sloths, hedgehogs, and grasshoppers will keep little ones engaged as they look at the pages.

~ Why Not ~
Some may tire reading the song with its repetition. Others may not be musically minded.

~ Wish ~
It would be fun to have a search page at the back of the book where the reader has to find specific animals as they enjoy the song.

~ Want ~
If you remember singing this cute song as a child, you will not want to miss picking up this book for your child or grandchild. The fun lady bugs dancing were my favorite.

Thanks to Z-Blog Squad for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to evaluate.

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, Book Review, Childrens

Once Upon A Time Bible for Little Ones

Once Upon a Time Bible for Little OnesTitle: Once Upon A Time Bible for Little Ones
Illustrator: Omar Aranda
Publisher: Zondervan
ISBN: 978-0-310-76170-9

“Once Upon a Time … There lived a woman named Hannah. Hannah loved God. But she was sad,” the fourth story begins in the Once Upon A Time Bible for Little Ones.

~ What ~
This unnumbered thirty-two-page board book with a padded front cover and rounded corners targets children four to eight-years-old looking for a book of stories from the Bible. With no scary scenes, colorful illustrations cover both sides of the pages. It would best be read out loud to beginner readers due to some of the complicated three syllable words.

With four stories from the Old Testament and four from the New Testament, each story is four pages long with a Bible verse noted under its title. While each begins with the words “Once Upon a Time, they end with a “Happily Ever After” section that connects it to the young reader.

Stories covered include Creation, Noah’s ark, Moses as a baby, Hannah’s prayer, Mary being visited by the angel, and Jesus’s birth, feeding the crowd, and resurrection.

~ Why ~
Every child should know stories of the Bible, and I liked how this one as a few of the less known one. I appreciate that in two places on the cover it states “The Bible is not a fairy tale. Every great story happened once upon a time.” With each story being short and to the point, it is a quick bedtime read.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not believe in God may not be interested a book of Bible stories. Others may be concerned that the shortened stories do not exactly retell those in the Word of God as liberties are taken (example: there is no mention Jesus dying on the cross for our sins).

~ Wish ~
I feel that beginning and ending every story with the standard wording of make-believe tales may still instill in a young child the stories are not true. Having all pronouns of God capitalized for reverence would be thoughtful.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a children’s short Bible story book that is loosely rewritten with engaging illustrations, this is a good choice.

Thanks to Z Blog Squad for this complimentary book that I am freely evaluating.

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 Soldier Who Killed A King

The Soldier Who Killed a King: A True Retelling of the PassionTitle: The Soldier Who Killed a King
Author: David Kitz
Publisher: Kregel Publications
ISBN: 978-0-8254-4485-2

“I have a future for you,” Marcus Longinus hears the words in David Kitz’s retold novel, The Soldier Who Killed a King.

~ What ~
At two-hundred-and-eighty-eight pages, this paperback is a rendition of the last week of Jesus Christ’s life on earth, told through the eyes of a veteran Roman centurion. Dealing with demons of his own, the soldier in charge of many witnesses the triumphant entrance of Jesus into Jerusalem to the aftermath after our Lord is risen from the dead. Due to topics of torture, crucifixion, and death as well as using the word hell once as a swear word, the story may not be apropos for immature readers. With italicized quotes from Scripture taken from the NIV, CEV, MLB, NKJV, and TEV versions of the Holy Bible, the ending has notes of listed chapter verses.

~ Why ~
If you are interested in the Passion week and the story of Jesus dying on the cross and rising after three days, this detailed book focuses from a first-person viewpoint. I liked how the writer molded and shaped a loyal soldier who was broken from his past and questioned why the “donkey king” had to die. His portrayal of Herald the Fox, Pilate the Badger, and Caiaphas the Weasel showed the power play of the three for political positioning by sending Christ to the Skull. While explaining Jesus’s miracles, personality, and love, the novel hones in on dealing with guilt, forgiveness, and eternity.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not have or want a personable relationship with Jesus Christ may avoid this book. Some may not like such an iconic story being retold. I felt the ending was a little odd involving the main character’s conversion.

~ Wish ~
Since the author did take ample liberties involving the centurion in many facets of Christ’s miracles and His crucifixion, it may confuse readers of documented Biblical passages, especially regarding a young boy.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a reminder story of what the Son of God did for you and me by shedding His blood on the cross for our sins told through the eyes of a confused soldier who is called for a purpose, this will keep you thinking hours after finishing.

Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars.

Thanks to Kregel Publications and the author for this book that I am reviewing freely.

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, Christian, Fiction

The Assault

The Assault (Harbingers): Cycle Two of the Harbingers SeriesTitle: The Assault
Authors: Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt, and Alton Gansky
Publisher: Bethany House
ISBN: 978-0-7642-2975-7

“Maybe you can tell me why we should think we are a team just because a pack of liars and deceivers from another universe say so,” the professor explains in Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt, and Alton Gansky’s novel, The Assault.

~ What ~
At three-hundred-and-sixty-eight pages, this paperback targets those who enjoy supernatural suspense with Christian overtones. Including using words like heck and hell as slang, topics of paranormal, dying, and death may not be appropriate for immature readers. The ending contains a chapter of the upcoming ninth episode.

Cycle two in the Harbinger series, this book is divided into four tales, each by a different writer, with all written in first person by one of four characters contained in each story. Being a part of a series, the stories in order involve the same four plus a ten-year old boy searching for The Gate, a mysterious group from an altered universe trying to control our world.

With the first story focusing on a tattoo artist who draws the future, she helps find Hitler’s powerful Spear of Destiny in Rome; the second one involves the professor having to trust when it comes to a plague of phytoplankton in Florida. The next has his assistant being hypnotized due to her connection to a non-carbon based life form orb, and the last finds an ex-football jock learning about change while fog creatures vie to take over a California high-rise building. As the team works together in their bizarre circumstances, they realize they have been brought together by their handlers to find and conquer The Gate.

~ Why ~
With four authors blending each of their diverse characters into one story, the good versus evil theme shows how disbelief reigns and the future can be changed. The first person dialogue is interesting as it contains only one viewpoint. I like how each tale could be a stand-alone yet linked together as if a television series. Although some of the experiences the team faced seemed unrealistic, they were written with detail and purpose.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like mystic, supernatural books may skip this read. With four individual stories, the book may confuse some readers. Readers may be frustrated with the disjointedness as one story ends and the next begins.

~ Wish ~
I wish there were more cohesiveness between the ending of one tale to the next although there is minor backtracking, but it is understandable being written by four different writers.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for supernatural suspense by four Christian authors, this series of four quick reads may entertain and interest you, but you may find some confusion between its pages.

Thanks to Bethany House and the authors for this complimentary book that I am freely reviewing.

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, Christian, Fiction

-417 Hand Moisturizer

Hand Lotion 1NO MORE DRY HANDS

~ What ~
This 3.4 ounce tube of hand moisturizing cream contains beeswax, shea butter, and olive oil as well as Vitamin A, B, E, and F. As a white medium thick lotion, it has a faint natural smell and is to be used to help cracked, dry, and aging skin, especially on the hands. The first 5 ingredients are aqua, glycerin, stearic acid, sesamum indicum oil and cetylalcohol. Instructions on the box states to apply a thin layer when needed and allow absorbance into the skin. The expiration date is May 16, 2020.

~ Why ~
Now that I am in my sixties, I find my skin dries out quickly, especially if I do yard work. I found this cream to quickly and effectively absorb into my hands and seal in moisture. My hands are smoother immediately. My daughter-in-law put it on her legs and liked its silky feeling. I find it works nicely on rough elbows and heels too since it is not greasy. I had never heard of Vitamin F and did not know it is an essential fatty acid, which topically could be good for the skin.

~ Why Not ~Hand Lotion 2
Those who do not like hand cream as it can feel slippery may avoid moisturizers, but this one absorbs quickly, leaving little residue.

~ Wish ~
It would be nice to include instructions on the tube, but there may be little room with the precautions in several languages.

~ Want ~
If you need an instant hand moisturizer packed with vitamins, this is is a lovely cream that keeps away dryness.

Thanks to -417 Dead Sea for this discounted product that I am under no obligation to review and the opinions are my own.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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* CONTEST * A Woman’s Guide to Healthy Aging ~ 5 Book Giveaways!

WIN VIVIEN BROWN’S BOOK,
A WOMAN’S GUIDE TO HEALTHY AGING!

5 random winners will be selected to get FREE from Medisys Corporate Health this informative book!

TEASER: “But this book will give you both solid information and practical tools to tilt the odds in your favour and reduce your risk of serious physical and cognitive problems as you age,” Dr. Vivien Brown writes in the introduction of her book, A Woman’s Guide to Healthy Aging: Seven Essential Ways to Keep You Vibrant, Happy, and Strong.

SIMPLE steps to enter this 3-day contest:

1.  Follow my blog if you do not 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. Check out this website: www.medisys.ca
Read more preventive health tips: http://blog.medisys.ca/newsletter-subscribe
5. If you are the winner, please consider posting a review regarding what you thought of the book (although it is not required).

Also, there is a free women’s health learning seminar and book signing event in October. All audience members of the event will receive a complimentary copy of Dr. Brown’s new book. Here is the schedule:
Ottawa: October 17th – 7:30am- 9am
Toronto:  October 19th – 5:00pm – 7:00pm
Vancouver: October 24th – 7:30am – 9am
Calgary:  October 23rd – 7:30am – 9am

This is a FAST CONTEST ending Thursday, August 3rd, 2017, after 5 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 4 star book – https://connywithay.wordpress.com/2017/08/01/a-womans-guide-to-healthy-aging/

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A Very Thankful Prayer

Title: A Very Thankful Prayer
Author: Bonnie Rickner Jensen
Illustrator: Natalia Moore
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-9883-4

“I’m thankful for the seasons,
And I am thankful God made fall.
But for His love that fills the earth,
I’m thankful most of all,” the ending states in Bonnie Rickner Jensen’s children’s book, A Very Thankful Prayer.

~ What ~
This twenty-four-page board book with rounded edges and small bronze leaf and word embossings targets children preschool age or older who like praying to God and are thankful for Fall. Focusing on the season, there are no scary or frightening scenes. Full page, full colored illustrations of animals grace every page.

With cute animals going through activities of the day during Fall, four lined rhymes cover the opened pages. Whether a bunny waking up, mice raking leaves, squirrels in a corn field, bunnies picking pumpkins, hedgehogs collecting apples, cats feasting, or owls watching over a town to name a few, the words promote being thankful to God.

~ Why ~
Christian parents will appreciate how this short book urges the young reader to thank God for all the things that have to do with Fall. Whether it is beginning the day with prayer, thanking Him for clothing, food, family, friends, Thanksgiving, or helping others, the book reminds us the importance of God’s love. Children will enjoy looking for the falling leaves on most of the artworks.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not approve of books that mention God or pray to Him may not want this book. With multiple-syllable and a few hard-to-comprehend words, the book would best be read out loud to beginner readers.

~ Wish ~
Although the rhyming is charming, it would help if some of the wording were easier to read for beginner readers.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a children’s book that helps young ones to be mindful of thanking and praying to God, this is a good start.

Thanks to Book Look Bloggers for this complimentary book that I am freely evaluating.

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

Fault Lines

Fault LinesTitle: Fault Lines
Author: Thomas Locke
Publisher: Revell
ISBN: 978-0-8007-2437-5

“He had no idea who his opposition was or why they were after them,” Charlie reflects in Thomas Locke’s novel, Faith Lines.

~ What ~
First in its series, this four-hundred-page paperback targets those who enjoy contemporary fictional thrillers involving knowing the future. With no profanity, topics of abuse and murder may not be appropriate for immature readers. The ending has the first chapter of the next book in the series.

A prior Ranger, Charlie Hazard is always watching his back working for a risk-containment business. When he agrees to go with beautiful Gabriella, he experiences an out-of-body ascension where he visualizes the future. By protecting the woman, he gets involved in a global cat-and-mouse game of protecting scientists from the Combine, a worldwide group whose profit, greed, and power want to dominate the spatial and temporal shift technology.

~ Why ~
With multiple players who want to know the future, the read is quick and engaging while focusing on Charlie and his captivation with Gabriella. I liked the blending of other characters such as a teen surfer, retired police woman, and an Italian bailiff.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like suspense stories involving rogue protection agencies and exploration of the possibility of foreseeing the future may want to pass on this story. Some may find it too technical regarding the teleporting process into the future, but it is discussed briefly.

~ Wish ~
With Charlie being an astute Ranger, it was surprising he would go willingly with Gabriella without questioning and become so loyal to her.

~ Want ~
If you look forward to anything written by this author, you will find this tale a page-turner and engaging, making you want to ascend into its pages to find out what happens next.

Thanks to Baker Publishing for furnishing this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.

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!, Book Review, Fiction

A Woman’s Guide to Healthy Aging

Title: A Woman’s Guide to Healthy Aging
Author: Vivien Brown M.D.
Publisher: Barlow Books
ISBN: 978-1-988025-22-3

“But this book will give you both solid information and practical tools to tilt the odds in your favour and reduce your risk of serious physical and cognitive problems as you age,” Dr. Vivien Brown writes in the introduction of her book, A Woman’s Guide to Healthy Aging: Seven Essential Ways to Keep You Vibrant, Happy, and Strong.

~ What ~
At one-hundred-and-seventy-six pages, this advanced-reader copy paperback targets women over fifty years old who are anticipating getting older and wondering how to approach it. After a foreword, preface, and introduction, seven chapters cover the topic, followed by an appendix, notes, index, and author’s biography.

Being a Canadian family physician, Brown takes the reader through seven facets of aging that involve diet and nutrition, exercise and sleep, the brain, immunizations, menopause, heart health, and bone protection. Discussing these concepts are to maintain a woman’s health as she gets older and understands how her body is changing physically and mentally.

~ Why ~
Beginning with having a non-diet mentality, the book recommends eighty percent smart foods and twenty percent of the indulge-type. The author promotes scheduled exercising, sleeping routines, and using meditation to help the brain. She strongly supports vaccinations of all types and goes into detail regarding menopause. Recognizing the signs of a heart attack and osteoporosis are also dissected in detail.

~ Why Not ~
Women who are in their late forties or early fifties may not be ready to learn what their bodies and minds will be doing in ten years. Others may feel the book is slanted to mainly medical aspects with no natural or homeopathic suggestions for eating or going through menopause.

~ Wish ~
Since the book seems to be geared more for women who are starting to age, it mentions little about vitamins, herbs, social interaction, and dealing with emotional stress (such as a move, divorce, or spouse’s death). Recommending hormone therapy using prescription drugs, the doctor does not encourage herbal remedies, soy-based products, and bio-identicals which may help some females, and I wish this topic was mentioned more in detail.

~ Want ~
For women who are clueless about what they are facing when they are in their fifties and older as they age, this may be a helpful tool. Since I am in my early sixties and have stayed on top of all content mentioned including recently getting my shingles shot, I did not glean anything new from this read but sure wish the hot flashes I have had for almost ten years were over.

Thanks to Bookpleasures and the author for this book that I freely evaluated.

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, Health