Book Review | Snack Girl To The Rescue by Lisa Cain

Do you need to be rescued from the “diet rollercoaster”? Maybe you want to learn how to eat healthier on a budget? Well, fear not because Lisa Cain, a.k.a. Snack Girl, is here to help!

Snack Girl to the Rescue!: A Real-Life Guide to Losing Weight and Getting Healthy with 100 Recipes Under 400 Calories
Lisa Cain

*** Special THANK YOU to the publisher & BLOGGING FOR BOOKS for providing me with a review copy. My review is my own personal opinion.***



Do you need to be rescued from bad eating habits and junk food? Are you looking to adopt a healthier lifestyle but don’t know where to begin? Well, fear not because Lisa Cain, a.k.a. “Snack Girl,” is here to help! A busy mother of two, Lisa faces the same challenges to healthy eating that we all do—unlimited access to junk food, a jam-packed schedule, a tight budget, and a love of delicious food. So in Snack Girl to the Rescue, she has created a way to make small changes that will make a difference in how you eat and live.

On her mega-popular blog, she shares the simple secrets and delicious, healthful recipes that have helped keep her budget and her body in check. without sacrificing fun or flavor. Now with Snack Girl to the Rescue! A Real-Life Guide to Losing Weight and Getting Healthy with 100 Recipes Under 400 Calories, Lisa is sharing her best, tried and true advice on avoiding common weight-loss pitfalls, shopping healthier on a budget, and getting in shape, along with 100 recipes for fun, quick, and affordable meals and snacks—all of which clock in under 400 calories and are Weight Watchers friendly!

There are no gimmicks, no short cuts, it’s just how you’re supposed to live: a healthy balanced life. Lisa shows us in this book, that nobody is perfect—but with a few minor tweaks, you can change your lifestyle, be happy and be healthy.


Lisa Cain, Ph.D., is a mother of 2 and loves food! An evolutionary biologist by training, she has become obsessed with how food contributes to our overall health.

For example, she is fascinated with the fact that Americans in the 1950’s weighed on average MUCH less than they do now. Obviously the root cause of the epidemic is what we eat, and she wants to help people make better decisions about what they eat.

She is a big proponent of food that doesn’t have any packaging and wants to help Americans eat more fruits and vegetables.


I absolutely love this book!!!
I have been on a weight-loss journey for over a year now to lose 100 pounds…(I’ve lost around 70 as of this review) and I’m always looking for new sources of information and inspiration. I am so thrilled to have discovered Snack Girl.
This book is a phenomenal resource…full of tips and recipes.
I love that Lisa shares her own personal story of health along with giving readers the low-down on all the good, bad and ugly methods out there (scary!)
This book is practical and applicable and well….edible!
It features tons of recipes to get you started on the road to great health.
I tried several of these recipes and they were all wonderful!
Some of my favorites were…
Revamped Chocolate Cake Mix Cupcakes

Simplest Comforting Pasta
These recipes were simple to make and delish!! (I just hate complicated ingredients and recipes…ugh!)
I recommend this book to anyone desiring a healthier lifestyle!
I love it!

Book Review | The Turning by Davis Bunn

The message was unexpected but instantly recognizable.

The Turning
Davis Bunn

*** Special THANK YOU to the publisher for providing me with a review copy. My review is my own personal opinion.***



A voice resonated from a distance and somehow from within. Against all earthly logic, it carried a divine command. And five very different people knew they were summoned to obey.

Their actions were demanding, but not particularly grand. Only later would they see a pattern emerge – one that links their tasks together and comes to challenge the cultural direction of the nation. They realize that one small personal response unveiled a new realm of moral responsibility. And this affirmation of everyday hope captures the attention of millions.But power and money are at stake. Malicious elements soon align themselves to counter the trend. To succeed they must also undermine its source. Can we really believe that God speaks to people today? Surely this must be dismissed as superstition or delusion. These well-intentioned but misguided individuals should not be allowed to cast our society back into the Dark Ages.

The public debate and media frenzy place an unprecedented spotlight on knowing and doing God’s will. The five encounter threats, but try to remain steadfast in their faith. Had God indeed imparted wisdom on selected individuals? Is this sweep of events part of his divine purpose?


T. DAVIS BUNN, a native of North Carolina, has lived in Europe for thirty-five years. Davis’ academic background includes degrees in psychology and economics from Wake Forest University and a master’s degree in finance from the City University of London. Fluent in three languages, he has traveled extensively in Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

Davis enjoys a particularly strong following in the inspirational market, often ranking on the Christian Booksellers’ Association bestseller lists. He has collaborated with Janette Oke, one of the leading names in Christian publishing, on a series of novels. Davis is a New York Times Bestselling author and has garnered a number of industry honors, including three Christy Awards for excellence in historical and suspense fiction.

Davis teaches in the Creative Writing Programme at the University of Oxford, where he holds an appointment as a Core Lecturer in the subject of fiction. He splits his time between Oxford and Florida with his wife Isabella.


I was blown away at how much I enjoyed this book- how wrapped up I was in the lives of these 5 characters!
When you first meet the characters, you get to know them by bits. Dunn’s choice to write in this back and forth style kept me captivated!
I wanted to know more about these characters and this kept me turning the pages.
I could see myself in the story and when this happens, you know you’re reading something special. I thought about the times in my own life that I had heard the voice of the Holy Spirit, nudging me to do something. When I look back, I think about the times I listened and the times I didn’t.
This book is a powerful reminder that when we step out in faith, the impossible becomes possible.
The story is fast-paced and exciting! It’s truly a story that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page.


Book Review | The Spirit-Filled Life by Charles F. Stanley

Discover the joy of surrendering to the Holy Spirit…

The Spirit Filled Life
Charles F. Stanley

*** Special THANK YOU to the publisher & BOOKLOOK for providing me with a review copy. My review is my own personal opinion.***


A wise, measured, and deeply passionate invitation to a Spirit-filled life…

Are you trying your best to be a good Christian but still feel something’s missing? Do the peace and joy you long for seem to elude you? Does following Christ sometimes feel like a lot of work—or like it’s just not working very well?

Much has been written and spoken—and argued!—about the Holy Spirit and what it means to be filled with the Spirit. Charles Stanley cuts through the confusion and introduces you to a living Person as real and active as God the Father and Christ the Son. Through personal stories, biblical exploration, and insightful explanation, he will help you discover:

-who the Spirit is—and how to develop a relationship with Him
-who the Spirit isn’t—and how to avoid damaging misconceptions
-how being “filled” with the Spirit actually works
-what the Bible really teaches about spiritual “signs” such as speaking in tongues
-how the Spirit can increase your capacity for faith, hope, love, and personal transformation
-what it means to “hear” the Spirit’s voice
-how to make the most of your unique spiritual gifting to build up Christ’s body
-what happens when the Spirit’s power is unleashed in your workplace, your family life, your friendships, and every other area of your life

In The Spirit-Filled Life Charles Stanley reveals how to recognize and begin to live with the guiding presence of the Holy Spirit.


Dr. Charles Stanley is senior pastor of First Baptist Church in Atlanta. He is the founder and president of In Touch® Ministries. His bestselling books include The Source of My Strength and How to Listen to God.


I’m thrilled that Dr. Stanley has written a very informative, biblically-based and exciting book that’s all about the Holy Spirit.
I think that the Holy Spirit may be one of the most controversial topics in the lives of Christians today. He is probably the most misused and misunderstood person of the Trinity.
That’s why Dr. Stanley’s book is so timely!
In the day and time we’re living in, it’s even more imperative that we understand Who the Holy Spirit is and what He does.
In “The Spirit-Filled Life”, Dr. Stanley shares his own personal experience of coming to understand and discover the Person and work of the Holy Spirit.
Chapter by chapter, delving into Scripture, you will discover for yourself…
Who the Holy Spirit is
What He does
How He works
Are you tired of trying and striving and working on areas of your life?
Have you rededicated your life to Christ, promising to do better- only to fall back into your same old patterns?
Do you feel completely unequipped to live for and work for Christ?
Are you ready to experience the freedom that comes from surrendering to the work of the Holy Spirit in your own life?
Is the Holy Spirit a complete mystery to you and you’d like to understand Him more?
This is the book for you!!!
I typically dislike marking up the pages of my books and dog-earring it’s pages in case I want to loan it out….well, get your highlighters ready! This one’s a keeper!!!


FirstWild Blog Tour | Second Chance Cafe by Brandy Bruce


It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, nonfiction, for young, or for old…or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today’s Wild Card author is:

Brandy Bruce
and the book:
Second Chance Cafe

*** Special THANK YOU to FirstWild & the author for providing me with a review copy. My review is my own personal opinion.***



Between her demanding work as a nurse and her father’s poor health, Isabella has no time for distractions. So when a handsome firefighter practically falls at her feet, she keeps him at arm’s length. But Ethan Carter is determined to win her over.

Orphaned at a young age, Ethan longs for a family of his own—and he’s sure Isabella is his match. But when he opens a café near his firehouse, Isabella is less than thrilled. She knows firsthand the strain of being a restaurant owner, and she wants no part of that life. Can Ethan convince the busy nurse they can overcome any obstacle and have their happily ever after together?


“Okay, people. We’ve got a firefighter with possible fractures and trauma to the spine. ETA is five minutes.”

Nurse Isabella Romano’s ears perked up and her pulse quickened. The mood in the emergency room shifted to one of controlled urgency. Isabella slipped on gloves and followed the attending physician, Dr. Nichols, to the Denver Health Medical Center’s E.R. entrance.

Sirens rang out in the distance, and within minutes the familiar sight of flashing lights sped toward them.

The back doors of the ambulance flew open and the paramedics jumped out. “Male, late twenties, fell from second-story landing to first floor and landed on his back. Multiple burns on his arms and a laceration on his right thigh. Hypotensive. Tachycardic. We administered 1 liter of saline through an 18-gauge IV in his left AC. Patient has maintained a pulse ox of 96 percent on 10 liters of oxygen via face mask.”

Isabella grabbed the left side of the stretcher, helping push the gurney to trauma room 1. At the sound of a low moan, she looked down at the firefighter strapped to the backboard. A neck collar kept him immobile and an oxygen mask covered his mouth and nose.

“What’s his name?” Isabella called out to the EMT across from her.

“Ethan Carter. Company 51. Those guys will be filling up the waiting room as soon as they clear the scene.”

She bent over him. “Ethan, I’m Isabella. Can you hear me?”

His gaze met hers and Isabella could see his intense pain.

“Ethan, you’re going to be okay. We’re going to take good care of you.”

“Okay, everyone, on three,” Dr. Nichols ordered.

Everyone stopped what they were doing at the doctor’s instruction and lifted the backboard with Ethan on it, transferring him and the backboard to the hospital bed. He moaned. “We’re going to need 50 mcg of fentanyl,” Dr. Nichols called out. Maggie, one of Isabella’s colleagues, began cutting off Ethan’s burned clothing.

“Let’s get some X-rays, Isa,” Dr. Nichols stated. “I want a CT scan. His thigh obviously needs stitches.”

“I’m on it,” Maggie said as she inspected the burns on Ethan’s arms. Isabella moved to order the X-rays but Ethan reached out for her. She stepped back toward him, preparing to explain to him that she’d be back and he was going to be all right. But the look in his blue eyes stopped her. He tried to reach for his oxygen mask, but Isabella shook her head.

“No, don’t move,” she said, then pulled away his mask for a moment.

“Don’t leave me,” he said, his voice dry and raspy. Isabella was pretty sure that even covered in dust and blood, with a brace around his neck, he was the most attractive man she’d ever seen. Her heart tugged. In that moment, he just seemed so alone.

She replaced his oxygen. “I have to go for a minute, Ethan, but I’ll be coming right back. And we’ll get through this together. I know you’re scared and I know you’re hurting. But it’s going to be okay.”

He just stared at her, his eyes pleading for her to stay. Isabella couldn’t help it; she reached down and brushed his brown hair from his forehead.

“I promise I’ll be back,” she told him.

Ethan Carter’s eyes fluttered open and then shut again quickly.

Who in the world turned on that blinding light? He could hear a voice, someone saying his name. He turned his head to the side.

What happened?

He heard that voice again, saying his name. Then it came back to him, playing through his mind like a movie reel. The house fire. The roaring sound of the blaze. The sensation that he was falling. The impact of the ground floor. The rush into the E.R.


He opened his eyes and blinked, trying to focus on the woman’s face in front of him.

“Hi there,” she said. “It’s nice to see you again.” He blinked again. “Nurse…”

“Isabella. We met under rather tragic circumstances, I know.”

She was teasing. He could hear it in her voice. Now that he could focus on her clearly, he remembered seeing her in the E.R.

“Isabella,” he repeated. Dressed in blue scrubs, she stood next to the bed, her brown hair tied back in a knot. She smiled down at him and Ethan felt better at the sight of her smile. She checked the monitors, her eyes darting toward the door of the hospital room.

“Did they get the family out of the house?” Ethan asked. Isabella nodded.

“Yes. One of the other firefighters—I think his name was Blake—told me to let you know that everyone made it out safely.”

“Except me, I guess,” Ethan said grimly. But Isabella’s smile didn’t fade.

“C’mon, tough guy. You’ve got this.”

Ethan studied her warm smile and playful tone. “You’re right,” he conceded. “God was watching over me in that burning house. He won’t abandon me now.”

She blinked in surprise at his statement. “I suppose He was,” she agreed.

“When can I go home?” Ethan asked.

“I’m not sure,” Isabella answered. “Dr. Nichols will be here any minute to talk to you,” she said.

“Can you stay?” Ethan asked. Her face softened.

“Sure, if you want me to. Is there anyone you want me to call for you? The guys from the firehouse were here all night, off and on, in the waiting room. There are a few guys out there now. They can come in as soon as Dr. Nichols speaks to you.”

Ethan nodded. “Thanks. But there’s no one else for you to call.”

Isabella frowned. “Your family?”

Ethan just shook his head, turning his attention to the gauze covering his forearms. “There’s no one. Just the guys.” He hoped she’d drop the topic. He hated the pitiful looks he got whenever he explained to people that other than a few distant relatives out in California, he had no one. It was part of why he’d joined Company 51. A whole firehouse with the brothers he’d never had. He wondered if the chief was in the waiting room.

The door slid open and a doctor wearing black-rimmed glasses and holding a clipboard walked in. He looked to be in his mid-forties.

“Good morning, Ethan. How are we feeling today?”

We? I have a feeling you’re doing a lot better than I am, Doc.

“I’m hurting, but I’m guessing that medication is dulling the real pain.”

Dr. Nichols nodded. “You had a bad fall, Ethan. You know that. There were second-degree burns on your arms and a gash on your thigh that took about twenty stitches. You lost some blood, but we’ve given you IV fluids and your vitals have stabilized. You’re pretty banged up and bruised all over, but unfortunately, your back took the impact of the fall.”

Ethan’s chest constricted with fear.

“How bad is it?”

Isabella stepped closer to his bedside.

“It could have been worse. You have a lumbar—lower back—spinal fracture. The X-ray showed an L4 compression fracture. The positive aspect of this is that you still have good movement and feeling. Also, there doesn’t seem to be any neurological damage.”

“Do I need surgery?” Ethan asked.

“I don’t think so. The X-rays indicate a clean fracture. I’m going to recommend we move forward with outpatient treatment. But you’ve got a long, arduous healing journey ahead of you.”

“How long until I can be back on active duty?”

Dr. Nichol’s eyebrows furrowed. “The spine is a tricky thing, Ethan. And everyone heals at a different pace. You’re going to need rest, pain medication, lots of therapy, a back brace—”

“How long?” Ethan insisted.

“We’re talking months. And that’s assuming that everything heals as it should. While in a few weeks you’ll be able to continue with most day-to-day activities, I don’t see you going back to active duty for probably six months. It could be less. It could be more. Perhaps they can transfer you to a desk job until you’re ready. After a few weeks of therapy we could reevaluate and consider light duty. But as of right now, your life is going to look different. You need to understand and accept that. Your priority needs to be healing properly.”

Months? Desk job? Light duty? Ethan tried to swallow the boulder in his throat.

“But eventually, I’ll be back to normal. I’ll be able to be on active duty, right?” Ethan pressed. Dr. Nichols folded his arms across his clipboard.

“If all goes as it should, I think you’ll make a full recovery. But as I said, this is going to be a one-day-at-a-time healing process. We’ll start with rest. I want you on complete bed rest for the next few days. No strenuous activity. We’ll fit you for a back brace, which I want you to wear for six to eight weeks. We’ll do an X-ray after six weeks and see if the bone has healed. Then, once the bone has healed, you’ll need to begin physical therapy.”

Ethan took a deep breath. He felt a soft hand squeeze his arm and he looked up at Isabella.

“Hey, it’s going to be okay,” she said, her voice encouraging. “You’re here, you’re alive, you’re going to be able to walk—those are all good things.” He stared at her, trying to hold on to the sense of calm emanating from her.

She’s right, Father, he prayed. But what am I going to do for months if I’m not fighting fires? And what if “the healing process” doesn’t go as it should and I can’t go back? Company 51 is all I have.

That last thought was too much. Ethan felt tears welling up in his eyes. He blinked fast to keep them at bay, mortified that he might…


Brandy Bruce was scribbling stories in spiral notebooks by the age of 12. Her love for books never left her. She graduated from Liberty University, married the one person she could never get enough of, then started working as a book editor for a publishing house. Brandy and her husband, Jeff, live in Colorado with their two children. She can be reached through her blog at


I absolutely love love loved Second Chance Cafe! I’m so thrilled to have found Brandy Bruce and her books. I look forward to future reads from her! I loved the characters so much! Their story definitely pulls at your heartstrings.
The book had a fantastic faith message and I found myself being reminded of the love and grace of God in my own life.
I will caution readers, be careful reading when hungry…oh, the food!!! This book was yummy from start to finish!!!I


Book Review | Rise and Shine by Sandra Brickner

Rise and Shine
Sandra Bricker

*** Special THANK YOU to the publisher for providing me with a review copy.*** My review is my own personal opinion.***


Shannon Malone thought she’d found her happy ending when she married Edmund Ridgeway, but a diving accident on their honeymoon left her in a coma. Waking up to the news that she’s thirty years old would have been daunting enough . . . but she also learns that Edmund has lost his interim battle with cancer and the world has marched on without her. Her gorgeous doctor, Daniel Petros, seems to know everything about her and becomes Shannon’s tour guide into a whole new world of madness where reality television has taken over the planet and everyone’s life appears to revolve around a tiny screen on their cell phones!

As Shannon struggles to navigate through the changes-both in the world and in her-she also must discern real memories from imagined ones. Did she really ever wear capris pants and entertain in her living room, or was that Laura Petrie from her favorite classic TV show? And where is her beloved dog, Freeway? Oh, wait! That was Jonathan and Jennifer Hart’s dog, not hers.

Shannon’s three elderly aunts flit through her life in true Sleeping Beauty style with her well-being always a priority. And Edmund’s sister Millicent descends like the Evil Queen she is, trying to extract Shannon from any claim on the Ridgeway family fortune. When a tornado moves through town and Shannon is knocked unconscious, will Daniel’s kiss awaken her once and for all?


“I’m going to be a writer when I grow up!” Sandra D. Bricker declared these words to her father on a Sunday afternoon in Slidell, Louisiana. She was 5 years old, and was referring to being able to string her cursive letters together to write her full name for the first time, but the declaration proved somewhat prophetic.

By the time she reached high school and her first article was published in The Cincinnati Enquirer, Sandie knew writing was what she wanted to do. For more than a decade, Sandie lived in Los Angeles and, while writing in every spare moment, she studied screenwriting and worked as a personal assistant and publicist to some of daytime television’s hottest stars. When her mother became ill in Florida, she walked away from that segment of her life and moved cross-country to take on a new role: Caregiver.

“I guess most people would see my career as a publicist as a sort of dream job. But giving it up turned out to be the best thing that could have happened to me!” she declares. “Not only was I given the gift of getting to know my mother as an adult woman before she passed away, but I was also afforded the blessing of being able to re-focus on writing novels in an effort to pursue my dream of a writing career.”

That career weaves a web that draws in every age of reader. Sandie’s interest in telling a story knows no boundaries. Three novels for middle readers carved out the beginning of the journey; then Avalon Books followed up with two hardbound romance novels in 2001: unWANTED: Husband (romantic comedy) and Change of Heart (romantic suspense). The response was tremendous, and Sandie was asked to pen a sequel to Change of Heart … and so Sins of the Past was released in December 2003. Next up was another romantic comedy; Wish I Weren’t Here was released in February 2005.

“I’m a Christian woman, first and foremost,” she says. “So the last couple of years has been a bit of a dream-come-true. Summerside Press chose me as one of two authors to launch their new Love Finds You line in October 2008 with Love Finds You in Snowball, Arkansas, a romantic comedy for the inspirational market. So the best of all worlds, as far as I’m concerned!”

More hilarity continued to follow from this award-winning author.

Love Finds You in Holiday, Florida (Fall 2009) and Love Finds You in Carmel, California (Fall 2010) for Summerside Press, and The Big 5-OH! (Spring 2010) and Always the Baker, Never the Bride (Fall 2010) for Abingdon Press.

Future books will include sequels, The Big 4-OH! and The Big 3-OH! for Abingdon Press.

After spending nearly 15 years dealing with her celebrity clients’ fans, Sandie finds it amusing that she is suddenly the one getting fan mail! “When people were actually buying my books at a recent signing, I found myself wanting to go around and invite them all to dinner or offer to bake them cookies. Hey! In fact … maybe I’ll do that very soon.”


I love fairy tale retellings and modern-day twists on the stories I loved growing up! Rise and Shine is one of my absolute favorites!
I cannot imaged being in a coma for 10 years, but main character Shannon experiences this. I thought this story was spun in such a fun and creative way- mirroring the tale of Sleeping Beauty, but with tons of fun!
Shannon woke up to the news that her newly we’d hubby had passed away. She woke up to a whole new world of technology- this was so fun to experience with her!
The supporting characters were wonderful- from the 3 aunts to the wicked Millicent and of course, Daniel.
I love Sandra’s books- they are fun and inspiring. I hope she continues to write these contemporary fairy-tale re-tellings, because I can’t get enough!!! I love them!!!


Book Review | Beyond Resolution by Rose Dee

Beyond Resolution
Rose Dee

*** Special THANK YOU to BookCrash for providing me with a review copy.***
***My review is my own personal opinion.***


Samara lives a life filled with fear. After being discarded and beaten by her drug dealing boyfriend, she takes one easy out after another. Her choices lead her down the road of self-destruction, into the degrading world of stripping and a life spent looking over her shoulder. Until an encounter with a stranger on a Kings Cross Street provides the catalyst for a life changing event that leads her back home.

Resolution is the last place in the world Jed wants to be. One drastic decision has led him to the Island resort and back into strained contact with his brother, Flynn.

From the bright lights of Sydney to the blue waters of Resolution Island, Beyond Resolution is a story that provides a window into the joy of forgiveness, trust and peace.


Rose Dee was born in Ingham, North Queensland, Australia. Her childhood experiences growing up in a small beach community would later provide inspiration for her first novel, ‘Back to Resolution’.

Rose, who holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree, is inspired by the love of her coastal home and desire to produce exciting and contemporary stories of faith for women.

Beyond Resolution, and A New Resolution are the second and third books in the ‘Resolution’ series.

Rose’s debut novel ‘Back to Resolution’ won Bookseller’s Choice at the Caleb Awards 2012.

She has also released ‘The Greenfield Legacy’, a collaborative novel, written in conjunction with three other outstanding Australian authors.

Rose resides in Mackay, North Queensland with her husband, young son, and mischievous pup, Noodle.


I absolutely love Rose Dee and her Resolution series.
Though this is a series, all of the books can be read and enjoyed as stand alones.
I really liked Samara, she was definitely a character who had made her fair share of bad choices, but I empathized with her and wanted things to turn out good.
This is a wonderful story of redemption and second chances. I love that Rose’s characters aren’t your typical cookie-cutter Christian characters…they are real and raw, with flaws and everything.
If you’re looking for a great story to get lost in…don’t miss this one!!!

*****5/5 STARS!!! GET YOUR OWN COPY!!!*****

Book Review & Cooking Giveaway | When I Fall In Love by Susan May Warren

Get to know the Christiansen’s…


When I Fall In Love
Susan May Warren

*** Special THANK YOU to the publisher & LitFuse for providing me with a review copy.***
***My review is my own personal opinion***


Hawaii was the last place Grace Christiansen ever imagined she’d vacation, much less fall in love. But when her family surprises her with a cooking retreat in paradise, she is pulled—or maybe yanked—away from her predictable, safe life and thrown headfirst into the adventure of a lifetime.
Max Sharpe may make his living on the ice as a pro hockey player, but he feels most at home in the kitchen. Which is why he lives for the three-week culinary vacation he takes each year in Hawaii. Upon being paired with Grace for a cooking competition, Max finds himself drawn to her passion, confidence, and perseverance. But just when Grace dares to dream of a future beyond her hometown, Max pulls away.
Wrestling with personal demons, Max fights against opening his heart to a love he knows he should never hope for. And as his secrets unfold, Grace is torn between the safe path in front of her and what her heart truly desires. If love means sacrificing her ideal happily ever after, Grace’s faith will face its toughest test yet.


Susan May Warren is the bestselling, RITA Award–winning author of more than forty novels whose compelling plots and unforgettable characters have won acclaim with readers and reviewers alike. She served with her husband and four children as a missionary in Russia for eight years before she and her family returned home to the States. She now writes full-time as her husband runs a lodge on Lake Superior in northern Minnesota, where many of her books are set. She and her family enjoy hiking, canoeing, and being involved in their local church. Several of her critically acclaimed novels have been ECPA and CBA bestsellers, were chosen as Top Picks by Romantic Times, and have won the RWA’s Inspirational Reader’s Choice contest and the American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year award. Five of her books have been Christy Award finalists. In addition to her writing, Susan loves to teach and speak at women’s events about God’s amazing grace in our lives. She also runs a writing community for authors. Visit to learn more. For exciting updates on her new releases, previous books, and more, visit her website at


I love this series and I love this family!
I was so excited to get the chance to get to know Grace a little more and finally she gets her story told in When I Fall In Love. I enjoyed delving into Grace’s love of cooking and food. Caution: this book may cause cravings!
I could totally relate to Grace’s fear of getting out of her comfort zone and getting out of Deep Haven…I loved seeing her growth as a character throughout the story. At one point in the story, Grace is devastated by something that happens and she begins to question God and in the end she must make a choice that could change everything!
I also enjoyed the other characters in the story…Raina, Casper, Owen and Amelia- I cannot wait to hear their stories!!! I don’t want this series to end, I love it!!! I think fans of Karen Kingsbury and Debbie Macomber will definitely enjoy Susan May Warren!!!



Book Review & Giveaway | The Butterfly and The Violin by Kristy Cambron

A mysterious painting breathes hope and beauty into the darkest corners of Auschwitz—and the loneliest hearts of Manhattan.


The Butterfly and the Violin
Kristy Cambron

*** Special THANK YOU to the publisher & LitFuse for providing me with a review copy.***
***My review is my own personal opinion***


Manhattan art dealer Sera James watched her world crumble at the altar two years ago, and her heart is still fragile. Her desire for distraction reignites a passion for a mysterious portrait she first saw as a young girl—a painting of a young violinist with piercing blue eyes.
In her search for the painting, Sera crosses paths with William Hanover, the grandson of a wealthy California real estate mogul, who may be the key to uncovering the hidden masterpiece. Together, Sera and William slowly unravel the story behind the painting’s subject: Austrian violinist Adele Von Bron.
A darling of the Austrian aristocracy, talented violinist, and daughter to a high-ranking member of the Third Reich, Adele risks everything when she begins smuggling Jews out of Vienna. In a heartbeat, her life of prosperity and privilege dissolves into a world of starvation and barbed wire.
As Sera untangles the secrets behind the painting, she finds beauty in the most unlikely of places: in the grim camps of Auschwitz and in the inner recesses of her own troubled heart.


Kristy Cambron has been fascinated with the WWII era since hearing her grandfather’s stories of the war. She holds an art history degree from Indiana University and received the Outstanding Art History Student Award. Kristy writes WWII and Regency era fiction and has placed first in the 2013 NTRWA Great Expectations and 2012 FCRW Beacon contests, and is a 2013 Laurie finalist. Kristy makes her home in Indiana with her husband and three football-loving sons.


What a wonderful, well-written, beautifully unforgettable story!
Kristy really pulls at the heartstrings with her characters and their stories.
You will definitely need to keep the tissues at hand as this book evokes so many emotions throughout.
Fans of memorable historical fiction will not want to miss The Butterfly and The Violin!!!
I cannot wait for more books from Kristy in this series!!!





It’s time to announce the winner for my NOAH GIVEAWAY!!!…





CONGRATS JORDAN!!!! You have WON… Please email me your mailing address to
I will pass your address onto Grace Hill Media & they will send out your prize!!!




“I would bring pepper spray, because there’s a lot of crazy animals on board.”

Thanks to all who entered and stay tuned for more giveaways!!!!



*** Special THANK YOU to BOOKLOOK for providing me with a review copy. My review is my own personal opinion.***


God will meet you personally in your garden… and in his.

Throughout the Scriptures God has revealed spiritual truth in the language of growing things. This Bible will take you into a deeper relationship with God through the contemplation of soil and soul. The NIV God’s Word for Gardeners Bible will inspire you to seek God in a personal way through informative essays, devotional readings and prayers that explore the nature of the gardener’s work, the rewards of gardening, the influence of seasons and weather, and the joy of the harvest. In this Bible you will also find botanical-themed pages containing horticultural information for the prominent plants noted in Scripture and landscape-themed pages highlighting the main gardens and regions in which the events in the Bible took place. Draw near to the One whose garden is planted with delight—in you!

-260 daily devotions and 52 weekend readings arranged in weekly themes and placed near relevant passages in the text to explore the biblical metaphors of gardens and gardening
-Beautiful, durable hardcover
-Topical Index (for 52 weeks)
-Special sections on the Garden of Eden, the garden of Gethsemane and Jesus the Vine.

Shelley S. Cramm is a suburban housewife who has found the Word of God to be completely useful and practical in her everyday life—not to mention delightfully fun! Her background includes a career in architectural and garden design, as well as involvement in local Bible study groups, Moms in Prayer and Moms of Preschoolers ministries. Inspiration to write a gardener’s Bible grew out of a routine of morning journaling and an enduring hope to finish up the laundry and go out to the garden. Shelley and her husband Topher have five children and live in Irving, Texas.


A great resource for anyone who is into gardening!!!
I was so surprised by the wonderful variety of devotionals throughout the Bible. I thought they were so creative! The GARDEN TOUR devotionals take you through all of the various gardens in the Bible- probably a few you haven’t even thought of! I also loved the GARDEN STORIES, GARDEN WORK and GARDEN TOOLS devotionals- they are very very applicable to daily life!
The layout of the Bible made it super simple to find exactly what I was looking for and guided me easily to the next devotional I was following.
Bible verses relating to grief were easy to find.
If you love all things gardening or simply need a reprieve and desire to escape to the shade of God’s garden….don’t miss this one!!!

*****5/5 STARS*****


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