Category Archives: Christian

KJV, Thinline Bible, Large Print, Cloth over Board, Green, Red Letter Edition

KJV, Thinline Bible, Large Print, Cloth over Board, Green, Red Letter EditionTitle: Large Print Thinline KJV Holy Bible
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-718-09799-8

“The Thomas Nelson KJV Large Print Thinline Bible, featuring the timeless beauty of the trustworthy King James translation, strikes the perfect balance between portability and readability,” the back cover insert states.

~ What ~
At eleven-hundred-and-eighty-four pages, this Holy Bible in the traditional King James version has a sturdy hardbound turquoise cloth cover with a vine design incorporated on the front and back. It includes two matching ribbon markers, a ten-point size font, words of Jesus in red letters, and eight full-color maps with a one-year reading plan and thirty-days with Jesus listing. Each chapter has a brief title, but there are no other additions.

~ Why ~
Being a King James Version Christian, this is my favorite version of Scriptures. I like how easy the large font is to read (yes, I am getting older). Including the two marker ribbons is ideal if you are reading through the Bible yearly and in both the Old and New Testament on the same day. Other nice features are the sturdiness of the hardcovers that will not bend or crack like other thinner-covered Bibles and that it can lay flat when opened. It is a stripped down version with no extra fluff or added notes.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not believe in God may not be interested in having a Holy Bible, but it is one of the most famous books in the world. Some may wish the book contained footnotes, a concordance, or index. Others may think the paper is thin so the words bleed through a little.

~ Wish ~
Realizing this is a thinline Bible, I wish it contained some information at the beginning of each book or a sentence or two before each chapter.

~ Want ~
If you need a thin but large print King James Version of the Bible with a sturdy cover that will last a long time, this is an excellent choice. It would make a thoughtful gift for a new believer or one who only wants to read the Scriptures.

Thanks to the 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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Psalm Hymns: Worship Leader Books 1, 2, & 3

Psalm-Hymns Worship Leader: Books 1, 2 & 3 (Volume 1)Title: Psalm Hymns: Worship Leader Books 1, 2, & 3
Author: L.L. Larkins
Publisher: Capture Books
ISBN: 978-1517796884

“By reciting or singing these psalms, God makes Himself, His records of testimonies of His deeds more accessible,” L.L. Larkins writes in the introduction of her book, Psalm Hymns: Worship Leader Books 1, 2, & 3 (Volume 1) – Dramatic, Contemplative, Singable, Recitable Psalms!

~ What ~
This two-hundred-and-ninety-page oversized paperback targets those who are seeking a compilation of rewritten psalms from the Bible that are set to the music of famous songs and hymns. By using a plethora of different versions of the Holy Bible, three books in one are included in this series that covers Psalms 1 through 89.

After an introduction and historical uses, the eighty-nine rewritten psalms cover two to eight pages each, ending with the Ten Commandments, author’s biography, and a proposed fifteen-week performance syllabus.

Each psalm is written out in poem format with the psalm title at the top of the page, followed by the type it is, tune it is set in, author of the original song, and year published. After several stanzas are written, notes are included, explaining the history of the original psalm and more information.

~ Why
This book would be helpful for a church or Sunday school group that is studying Psalms by singing corresponding rewritten wording to a famous song’s melody. With the added notes regarding the history or background information, it can become an in-depth study of the Word of God that is set to music. I like that old hymns are used such as What a Friend We Have in Jesus, Leaning on the Everlasting Arms, and Rock of Ages.

One example I enjoyed was the short Psalm 23 that is arranged in four stanzas to the tune of Away in a Manger by James R. Murray in 1887. The notes explain the name of God is Jehovah Roi as well as three other names for Him. Also mentioned are sheep and their characteristics, habits, and utter dependency on their caretaker, just like we need to be personally taken care of by Jesus.

~ Why Not ~
Those who have no interest in singing, worshiping, or learning more about Psalms in the Bible will not be interested in this book. Others may not like the translation or rewritten versions of the poems and songs of the Old Testament.

~ Wh0~
A transcriber of psalms for singing and reflections and mentor /counselor in performance and theory of worship, Larkins used to be a leader of praise and worship in church, youth, and various African groups.

~ Wish ~
It would be helpful to include an index that listed the musical arrangement that went with each psalm.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a praise/worship book for a church, choir, or singing event, this may be a helpful source that focuses on the more than half of the Biblical Psalms.

Thanks to Capture Books for this complimentary book that I am reviewing freely.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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The Whispering of the Willows

The Whispering of the WillowsTitle: The Whispering of the Willows
Author: Tonya Jewel Blessing
Publisher: Capture Books
ISBN: 978-0-997162547

“Life in the Ashby family seemed especially hard. Where was God love? Auntie Ada told her once to look at the willows – cuz they even praised God,” Tonya Jewel Blessing writes in her novel, The Whispering of the Willows.

~ What ~
This three-hundred-and-ninety-six-page paperback targets those who enjoy historical Christian fiction involving family dynamics and romance. Using one noun that may be considered profanity and slang words, topics of physical and sexual abuse and death may not be appropriate for immature readers. While each chapter begins with an Appalachian folk belief, the ending has a list of the hymns and folksongs of the story’s era as well as eleven discussion questions.

In this tale set in the 1920s in the rural hills of West Virginia, the large Ashby family struggles often running a hog farm where parents are to be obeyed at all costs, marriages are arranged at young ages for monetary sake, and loyalty runs deep. When an act of violence happens to fourteen-year-old Emie, she has to deal with the life-changing circumstances by standing up, even if it means going against her parents’ wishes. With the help of her loving brother, a wise aunt, a dear friend, and others in the holler, many in her family learn about love versus hate, forgiveness over bitterness, and trusting in Jesus instead of oneself.

~ Why ~
This book forces the reader to consider that God is always with us, no matter the trials and tribulations we go through in life. As Emie deals with one heartbreak after another involving those she loves and herself, she yearns to trust Jesus although she cannot fathom why things keep happening that change her and those around her.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like books that have the eternal plan of salvation, learning to trust in Christ only, and old fashioned church hymns may not be interested in this book. Others may not want to read about the struggles of poverty, racism, hatred, and abuse.

~ Who ~
Having written a number of women’s devotionals, Blessing has traveled around the globe as a conference speaker, focusing on helping women. She and her husband currently live in South Africa. This is her first novel.

~ Wish ~
The ending was a little rushed and abrupt. I hope the author has a sequel to the book, explaining what happens next to all the interesting characters she has created.

~ Want ~
If you enjoy a novel that reiterates God is always by our side, you will not want to put down this tear-jerker that shows how one family picked up the pieces and found love after repeated disasters and tragedies.

Thanks to the Book Club Network for this complimentary book that I am reviewing freely.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Devotions from the Kitchen Table

Devotions from the Kitchen TableTitle: Devotions for the Kitchen Table
Author: Stacey Edwards
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-9187-3

“God is still present no matter what a day may bring. God does not hide Himself from us. He can be found by anyone whose heart seeks Him,” Stacey Edwards writes in one of her inserts in her book, Devotions .for the Kitchen Table.

~ What ~
At two-hundred-twenty-four hundred pages, this book is meant to be read at one’s kitchen table as a devotion that targets women. Using mainly the New International Version of the Holy Bible, also referenced are the ESV, HCSB, NASB, NLT, and Message. A ribbon marker is attached.

Containing ninety devotions, each one is one to one-and-a-half pages with beautiful full-color photographs on their opened pages of homey, comfy scenes. Having short titles such as First One Awake, Meal Train, Pinwheels, Slow Cooking, Power Lines, Dad’s Voice, The Garage Door, Bird Feeder, and Grampa’s Toolbox, each begin with a written out Bible verse followed by several paragraphs correlating the topic to God and a closer relationship with Him. The endings have one to three sentence prayers regarding the devotions’ content.

~Why ~
I appreciate devotionals that have little information about the author but focus on God in day-to-day living, and this book does that. The stories are brief and to the point, often beginning with a question but rarely using the words “I” or “me.” Sometimes Old and New Testament characters or Scripture are noted as the writer shows the struggles, goals, and achievements of daily life with Christ.

A favorite was Raindrops on a Window that offers the Bible verse I Corinthians 1:9 regarding fellowship with Jesus. The author asks if you have ever noticed the raindrops on a window pane and how the view is skewed. She reminds us that when we are lonely, we must not fall into the trap that God is far away; but we need to have an accurate view of Him always being nearby, no matter what our circumstances. A short prayer is at the end asking for a proper perspective.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ may not want to get a book that focuses on getting closer to the Almighty. Others may wish there were more than ninety devotions included.

~ Who ~
No information is provided about the author.

~ Wish ~
With the stunning photographs throughout the book, it draws away from the writing, so I may be one of the few that wish there were less artwork and more than ninety devotions that could be read throughout the year.

~ Want ~
If you like devotionals with beautiful photographs and short reading, this is an excellent choice for a Mother’s Day or birthday present or gift for a friend who are seeking a closer walk with Christ, but it should not take the place of daily Bible reading.

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

GRAMMARY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Love Letters from God: Bible Stories for a Girl’s Heart

Love Letters from God; Bible Stories for a Girl's HeartTitle: Love Letters from God: Bible Stories for a Girl’s Heart
Author: Glenys Nellist
Illustrator: Rachel Clowes
Publisher: Zonderkidz
ISBN: 978-0-310-75328-5

“Full of warmth and love, this picture book will fill girls’ hearts with the wonder of the Lord,” the inside jacket flap states in Glenys Nellist’s children’s book, Love Letters from God: Bible Stories for a Girl’s Heart.

~ What ~
This letter-size hardbound of thirty-two pages with fifteen lift-the-flap note cards targets young girls four to eight years old. Having no scary scenes, it is a compilation of fourteen rewritten Bible stories about women taken from the New International Reader’s Version. Illustrator Clowes’s expressive and detailed designs fill both sides of the opened pages, leaving lightly colored backgrounds for black wording in an easy-to-read font.

Focusing on females of the Bible, the stories include Eve, Miriam, Rahab, Deborah, Hannah, Naaman’s servant girl, Esther, Mary, the Samaritan woman, the lady to be stoned, Martha, a widow, Mary of Bethany, and Mary Magdalene. Each story has a Bible verse and fold-out love letter from God. The ending has a large heart-shaped letter to write a note to God.

~ Why ~
I like how each story is titled about different types of girls and that the fold-out love letters from God apply to the reader. Inside there is a place for the reader’s name to be written followed by encouraging words that God supposedly writes, reminding what is to be learned from the story. Adding the final page with a large blank heart-shaped note card offers an invitation to write to God

~ Why Not ~
While the concept of having letters from God inserted in the book is clever and cute, the stories written with ample creative liberties in only a positive light may misdirect young ones to incorrectly learn about the Bible. The author’s intention is a charming idea; yet one should be cautioned there are major theological flaws in many of her stories.

~ Who ~
Author Nellist has had stories and poems published in children magazines and produced other books in this series. She lives in Michigan with her husband. Illustrator Clowes illustrates children’s books and lives with her husband and family in Yorkshire, England.

~ Wish ~
I wish the stories were more accurate according to Scripture. I prefer all pronouns of God and Jesus capitalized for reverence.

~ Want ~
If you know of a young girl who wants an interactive book of fourteen Biblical stories for girls with letters written to them from God and a place to respond, this is a good choice if you can make sure the reader knows the Bible stories correctly.

Thanks to Z-Blog Squad for furnishing this complimentary book that I am freely reviewing.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Grandpa Hugs

Grandpa HugsTitle: Grandpa Hugs
Author: Laura Neutzling
Illustrator: Cee Biscoe
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-8940-5

“Grandpa’s chair is comfy-cozy
With room enough to share.
Before it’s time to go to bed,
We say a nighttime prayer,”
Laura Neutzling writes in her children’s book, Grandpa Hugs.

~ What ~
At twenty pages, this board book with a padded front cover and rounded corners targets children ages two to five years old. With no scary scenes, it is a nice story about grandpas. With full-color scenes on both sides of the open pages, young animals are shown with their grandfathers in different activities.

Written in rhyme with some complicated wording, this short tale shows many of the different things that grandfathers do with their grandchildren. Bunnies, foxes, monkeys, elephants, sheep, giraffes, tigers, owls, dogs, and bears depict the unique love between the generations.

~Why ~
Our three-year-old granddaughter loves being read books before she goes to sleep, and I enjoy how this one focuses on a grandpa and what he does that is special. The pictures are engaging and fun to look at for the age group.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not believe in praying to God may want to avoid this book, but it is only mentioned in one line, and no Bible verses are included. Due to some of three syllable words, it would be best to read it out loud to beginner readers.

~ Who ~
Having a career in entertainment, Neutzling has been focusing on writing scripts, discussion guides, and books for children. She and her husband live in Florida.

~ Wish ~
Being a grandma, I hope a book for grandmothers will be coming soon.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a bonding book about a granddad with pictures of animals, this is a nice choice. It would be an adorable book to have in the grandparents’ home when the young ones come for a visit and sit in grandpa’s lap to be read it.

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

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Princess Prayers

Princess Prayers (The Princess Parables)Title: Princess Prayers
Author: Crystal Bowman
Inspired by: Jeanna Young & Jacqueline Johnson
Illustrator: Omar Aranda
Publisher: Zondervan
ISBN: 978-0-310-75869

“Dear Lord, I love you very much. It makes me glad to know your love is always with me no matter where I go,” Crystal Bowman writes in her children’s book, Princess Prayers, which is inspired by Jeanna Young and Jaqueline Johnson.

~ What ~
Part of the Princess Parables series, this thirty-page small hardbound with a glittery embossed padded front cover targets young girls ages four to eight years old. With no scary scenes except two scenes of lightning striking, the book contains prayers to God.

With brightly colored drawings that are easy to understand on the right side of the pages, there are fifteen rhyming prayers on the opposite pages that are two stanzas each. Some of the titles that involve the princess sisters include My Morning Prayer, God’s Beauty, Happy Times, When I’m Afraid, I’m Sorry, and Near to God. Small ovals on the left sides have written out Bible verses under the rhymes.

~ Why ~
Little girls who are into being or reading about princesses may like this book that concentrates on praying from morning to bedtime and for any reason needed. I like how colorful and expressive the designs are that will keep a young reader’s attention as they read the prayers.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not believe in God or praying to Him will avoid this book. Some may not like that it is geared toward girls with the princess connotations as there is only one male depicted in one illustration. Beginner readers may find the two- and three-syllable words hard to comprehend or understand so would be best if someone read it to them.

~ Who ~
Author Bowman has written over eighty children’s books. She lives in Florida with her husband.  Young is a cancer survivor who has written over a dozen children’s books. She lives in California with her husband and four children. Also residing in the sunshine state, author Johnson and her husband have seven grandchildren, and she is devoted to teaching young ones about God. Illustrator Aranda was born in Argentina and has produced artworks worldwide, focusing mainly on children’s products.

~ Wish ~
I wish all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.

~ Want ~
If your young princess has enjoyed other books in this series, this prayer book would be a thoughtful addition.

Thanks to the 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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Sandpiper Cove

Sandpiper Cove: A Hope Harbor NovelTitle: Sandpiper Cove
Author: Irene Hannon
Publisher: Revell
ISBN: 978-0-8007-2768-0

“I told you earlier – here in Hope Habor, we take care of our own,” Lexie tries to convince Adam in Irene Hannon’s novel, Sandpiper Cove.

~ What ~
The final book in the Hope Harbor series, this three-hundred-fifty-two-page paperback targets those interested in a romance that challenges different backgrounds when living in a small town. With no profanity or sexual scenes, the topics of bullying may not be appropriate for immature readers. The ending includes an excerpt from a new book series, acknowledgments, author’s biography, and advertisements.

In this current-day story based in a fictional coastal town in Oregon, thirty-five-year-old widowed Lexie Graham lives with her mom and five-year-old son. As the city’s police chief, she has little time for romance until she meets an ex-con, Adam Stone. While she tries to uncover who has been vandalizing the resort area, she asks for Adam’s help in steering a lonely high schooler away from bad friendships.

With Adam trying ardently to change and forget his past, he wonders how a woman with Lexie’s class and status could be interested in an ex-con like him. Lexie, realizing she is stepping out of her comfort zone, must accept her guilt-ridden past to move on with relationships.

~ Why ~
If you have read the first two in the series, you will remember some of the eccentric and cherished characters who are weaved through this tale. I live in Oregon, and I like how the book’s scenery is well-depicted and the town is realistic.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not like continuing stories of small town living and everyone knowing each other’s business may not care for this clean Christian romance. Those who do not believe in God may pass it up too.

~ Who ~
The bestselling author of over fifty novels, Hannon has received three RITA awards from Romance Writers of America and is a two-time Christy Award finalist. She and her husband live in Missouri.

~ Wish ~
The tale was predictable in both the romance and relationship departments, so it had little anticipation. I also wish all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.

~ Want ~
If you like a romance that focuses on moving from the past and forgiving oneself, this ending of the trilogy of small town living will be a good choice.

Thanks to Revell for furnishing this complimentary book to read and review.

This review will be posted on the Baker Publishing, 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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52 Amazing Things that Became True of You the Moment You Trusted Christ

Title: 52 Amazing Things that Became True of You the Moment You Trusted Christ
Author: Stephen Kuhn
Publisher: FaithWorks
ISBN: 978-1-4789-7073-6

“Understanding your true identity as “in Christ,” and all the benefits that come with that, will help you maintain a proper perspective,” Stephen Kuhn writes in the conclusion of his book, 52 Amazing Things that Became True of You the Moment You Trusted Christ.

~ What ~
At one-hundred-and-ninety-two pages, this small hardbound targets those seeking a Christian devotional, often correlating to topics with personal memories, movies, current events, and family life. Using mainly the New Living Translation of the Holy Bible, also referenced are the NIV and NASB versions. After an introduction, fifty-two chapters discuss our complete relationship with Jesus, ending with a conclusion, notes, author’s biography, and book advertisements.

From two to four pages long, each chapter is about how we are new creatures in Christ when we come to Him. The subject starts with a written out Bible verse, followed by several paragraphs regarding different attributes and characteristics of God, as well as His benefits, love, and gifts He has given us. Correlating iconic movies, shows, and actors to his wife, daughter, and addictions, also added are Biblical characters and how we are truly blessed by God’s everlasting love and attention.

~Why ~
As believers, we tend to forget how much God loves and cherishes us, and I enjoy reading books that remind me of Christ’s ultimate sacrifice, love, and grace for my redemption of sin. My favorite chapters were those that were about the Jesus, the prodigal son, and Apostle Paul.

One example I enjoyed is Chapter 7 titled You Have Been Set Free from All Condemnation with Romans 8:1 written out. Kuhn reminds us that our sin was one-hundred percent forgiven when Christ shed His blood for us on the cross two-thousand years ago. We should thank Jesus for loving and accepting us unconditionally in spite of our sins.

~ Why Not ~
Some readers may not like that many of the pages mention personal viewpoints that include Whac-A-Mole, Willy Wonka, Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Arnold Schwarzenegger, cartoons, or the author’s childhood, family life, and addiction to name a few. Others may prefer primarily concentrating on Biblical aspects. Seasoned or older Christians may not relate to some of the secular correlations to the topics.

~ Who ~
A writer and blogger, Kuhn is a recovery group leader and conference speaker who lives in Oregon with his wife and daughters.

~ Wish ~
It would be helpful if bullet point reminders and prayers were included that related to each chapter.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a reminder of the amazing hope we have in our personal relationship with Christ, this is a good choice if you do not mind reading about many of the author’s experiences. Ideally, it would be apropos for the thirty-something-year-old new believer, especially males.

Thanks to FaithWords for this complimentary book that I am freely reviewing.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Thank You, God, for Grandma

Title: Thank You, God, for Grandma
Author: Amy Parker
Illustrator: Rosalinda Kightley
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-0-7180-8925-2

“Thank You, God, for Grandma;
There’s nothing I can do
I know she’ll always love me, and …
Grandma, I love you too!”
Amy Parker ends in her children’s book, Thank You, God, for Grandma.

~ What ~
At twenty pages, this board book with a padded front cover targets children ages two to five years old. With no scary scenes, it is a nice story about honoring a young one’s grandmother. Full page color illustrations of a bear with two of her grand cubs cover both sides of the opened pages.

Written in rhyme with some complicated wording, this short tale concentrates on a bear grandmom who cares, teaches, plays, spoils, sings, and interacts with her grandchildren. While there are fun scenes of bears romping in the field, reading books, dressing up, playing hide-and-seek, cooking, picnicking, and singing, it is also noted the grandmother shows how to care for others and let God’s love shine. The beginning and end of the book stress that young ones should be thankful to God for their grandparent.

~Why ~
Our three-year-old granddaughter loves being read books before she goes to sleep, and I love how this one focuses on a grandma and what she does that is special. The pictures are engaging and fun to look at for the age group.

~ Why Not ~
Those who do not have a personal relationship with God may not understand why one would thank God for grandparents. Due to some of three syllable words, it would be best to read it out loud to beginner readers.

~ Who ~
The author of over thirty books that have sold over one million copies worldwide, Parker focuses on children, teens, and adults. Married, she and her husband have two sons. No information is given on the illustrator, Kightley.

~ Wish ~
Because this book only shows a grandmother and grandchild relationship, it should be noted there is a similar book about grandfathers too.

~ Want ~
If you are looking for a bonding book about a grandma with pictures of bears, this is a nice choice.  It would be an adorable book to have in the grandparents’ home when the young ones come for a visit and cuddle up with their grammy and be read it.

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

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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