Saturday, October 30, 2010

MAGGIE'S TRUST by Donna Boden

Maggie Davis grew up with a lot of hurt especially from her stepfather. Because of that she decides she'll never marry but instead become a teacher and pour all her love into her students. Jake McCormick will never again trust a woman. Though his first wife is dead she left a lot of scars on Jake's heart. He allows his parents to raise his son, Eli, while he leads wagon trains west. But on one trip home his draw to Maggie becomes very strong. He sees how she relates with his family and especially his son. He sees the sweetness inside her. He wants that but is also afraid that she will turn out to be like his first wife. What happens when promises are made but then broken? Will they allow God to show them the kind of love he desires for them?

Donna Boden is a new author to me and I found "Maggie's Trust" a hard book to put down. From the very beginning you are drawn into the story and it really doesn't let you rest until you're finished. I really liked Maggie. She was so kind and tender. She's a very relate-able character. Jake was a complicated man. He made a bad decision to protect his heart. That's something I'm sure we've all done. I appreciated how the author wove the thread of God's care throughout the story. How he guides our steps and places us where we need to be. You hear lots of good advice from Jake's Aunt Anna, whom Maggie is living with. The way she guides them spiritually in such an unobtrusive way is sweet to watch. I felt the characters were well drawn and I love the whole McCormick family dynamics. I was happy to see by the end of the book that there will be another story called Beth's Dilemma. Beth is Maggie's 1/2 sister. If you like a good prairie story loaded with character conflicts then this is the book for you. I recommend it.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Aurora Kavvan, an LAPD officer, is continually haunted by the death of her FBI brother, Lance. She blames herself because not only was he killed before her very eyes, but with her gun. This guilt caused her to break her engagement with her fiance, Jordon Reiley, who also was her brother's partner and best friend. When Aurora's partner and best friend Joe is shot while on a stake-out, and another attempt is made on Aurora's life, Jordon comes to comfort her and protect her. Together they try to find who's responsible and also bring down a drug lord they've been after for years. But they find a lot more than they bargained for.

I have not read anything by this author before but I really did enjoy this story. It had action, suspense and romance. It definitely kept me turning pages. I enjoyed all the characters in this story and would really like to see another book about Jordon's brother. The Reiley family was really great! Aurora was a little frustrating in the beginning of the story. I totally understood the guilt of what happened to her brother but it seemed a little unnatural for a police officer to continue with that type of "guilt-ridden" behavior. Once that gets ironed out it starts getting good. The story had a lot of narration to it where I wish there had been more dialog between the characters. The dialog that was there was great. Overall Shadows From the Past was a good story with an timely message of forgiveness. Something we all need to be reminded of. I look forward to hopefully seeing more by this author.

Monday, October 25, 2010


Robin Caroll once again takes you on a journey loaded with mystery, suspense, romance, spiritual truths and lots of twists and turns. In the Shadow of Evil finds you in Eternal Springs, Louisiana. Layla Taylor is a general contractor there who loves her work and is well respected. So why is it that the house she just finished is set a blaze complete with a dead inspector inside? That's what Detective Maddox Bishop (whom we met in Fear No Evil) is trying to find out. He and his partner Houston begin to investigate the crime. Layla seems to be a common thread. Sparks fly when Maddox and Layla meet although there is something that draws them to each other. As incidents continue to escalate will they find who and what they're looking for before it's too late?

Robin just keeps getting better and better! There was so much happening 'In the Shadow of Evil' I was turning pages fast enough to create a breeze! I love how the author allows you into the heads of the main characters so you understand why they are the way they are. Maddox together with his partner Houston were so entertaining. I thoroughly enjoyed their easy banter together. I also enjoyed Layla and her sister Alana. They were so supportive of each other, even if they disagreed. They had such kind and loving hearts. Then there was Maddox and Layla. I loved watching these two together as they dealt with all of the complex emotions they had going on. All the characters were very well drawn and added such value to the story. One thing I truly appreciated was the theme of forgiveness. Beginning with God forgiving us and the need to forgive others. That's not always an easy thing to do as you'll see in the story. (I think we can all relate with the struggle to forgive) But sometimes when we take those most difficult steps we gain the greatest blessing. Oh... and watch out for the hair-pin turn at the end. It's a doozy!! Great job Robin! I highly recommend In the Shadow of Evil. A thank you goes to the author and publisher for providing this complimentary copy for my review. It's published by B&H Publishing. It's release date is March 2011.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

EMILY'S CHANCE by Sharon Gillenwater

Emily Rose has never felt like her parents were proud of her. That's one reason she wants to land the position of Museum Curator in a big city museum. Maybe then she will feel worthy. In the meantime setting up the historical museum in Callahan Crossing is good experience. Not to mention she truly has fallen in love with the town, the people and especially the Callahans! Chance Callahan has been waiting for God to send him the right woman. But as they say..."That's a tall horse to saddle"! However, he feels more drawn to Emily than any other woman he's known. As they continue to get to know each other the feelings between them become very strong. So what will happen when Emily's job is done? Visit Callahan Crossing and find out!

Sharon Gillenwater knows how to deliver a romantic story. And I am a sucker for romance. Emily's Chance picks up where Jenna's Cowboy left off. Although you won't feel lost if you haven't read the first book. I love the Callahan Clan. They are such a fun family and so endearing you just want to be a part of them. Yet, they are not without their issues. Chance is a great guy. It's no wonder the girls are after him. He's tender, romantic and funny. But the thing that really draws you in is his moral character. He truly wants to do things right. Emily was strong and independent yet she yearned for someone to love her but was afraid to risk her heart since she has always been disappointed. The story reminds us that we are new creatures in Christ, He makes all things new. Sometimes we need to remember that and not dwell in the past. I found this tale to be filled with lots of good ole sayings that put a smile on my face. If you enjoy a romantic, feel good story with a good spiritual message then I totally recommend Emily's Chance. Can't wait for the next installment! A thank you goes to the author for sending me this book.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

CRITICAL CARE by Candace Calvert

Claire Avery is a skilled ER nurse who watched her brother die while she was on duty. That event made her question and second guess her skills until finally she left her job. Wanting a new start she decides to move to a new place, a new hospital. Her assignment is counseling the staff after a day-care center explosion. That's where she runs into Dr. Logan Caldwell (a.k.a. Dr. McSnarly). He doesn't buy into all the "touch-feely" type counseling. He expects his staff to be as tough as he is. But he finds himself drawn to the woman behind the pamphlets.

Yet another great story from Candace Calvert. I just loved Logan Caldwell. What girl wouldn't. He was McSnarly outside but inside beat a heart of gold. (that needed a little refining)! :) You could definitely understand why Claire felt the way she did and I truly sympathized with her. It would be hard for anyone to face what she did. Erin (the charge nurse & her friend) was a big help. She always tried to be an encouragement to Claire. This story had great balance of drama, action and of course...romance. There were some very romantic moments. I appreciated how the characters struggled with where God was in their trials. I'm sure we've all struggled with that question at times. This is the first book in the Mercy Hospital Series. I have read Disaster Status and Code Triage and I personally would recommend the entire series. I'm looking forward to what this author has for us next!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

CODE TRIAGE by Candace Calvart

Dr. Leigh Stathos is a wounded ER doctor. It's nothing medicine can fix though. Her heart is full of hurt that began when she was a child right up to the affair her husband had. Leigh doesn't believe in 'happily ever after'. She can't grasp that a loving God would allow these bad things to happen. Her divorce will be final in a week and then she can finally move on. Officer Nick Stathos made the biggest mistake of his life the night his best friend was killed. Since that time he has been trying to win back the heart of the woman he truly loves, his wife, Leigh. Nick is someone who never gives up. But as the end of the week draws closer to their divorce being final, it seems pretty clear Leigh's not going to change her mind. When an act of violence by a desperate man lands the hospital in a lockdown it's the start of events that will forever change the lives of those involved.

First let me start off by saying I LOVED the cover of Code Triage! Very often covers do not truly depict the people in the story but not true in this case. They totally match Nick and Leigh. This was another tremendous story by Candace Calvert. She had my stomach tied up in such knots I thought I would have to go to the ER. She made me feel so much emotion from our main characters. You totally understood why each one was hurting and this author helped you fully understand both sides of the issues. I loved Nick's character. He was a great guy who had a week moment. One that almost cost him his entire future. Leigh was a strong woman with big protective walls around her heart. But was the Lord quietly working all things together for good? Read Code Triage and find out! It's a great reminder that you should guard your heart as well as your marriage and keep God at it's center. Great Job, Candace!!! I highly recommend this story. It can be read as a stand alone but for a richer experience you'll want to read Critical Care and Disaster Status first! A thank you goes to Tyndale for sending me this complimentary copy for review.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

WITHIN MY HEART by Tamera Alexander

Rachel Boyd is trying to fulfill her husband's dream by working their ranch and giving her two young sons a heritage. But for a woman missing her husband and trying to fill the role of both mom and dad it's beginning to take it's tole. Especially when her hearts desire is not the ranch but medicine. Dr. Rand Brookston dreams of building a proper clinic for the town of Timber Ridge. He also longs for Rachel to take notice of him. When the two are thrown together to care for a mutual friend Rachel begins to see Rand in a different light. Each have fears from the past. Can they trust God and face those fears together?

Tamera Alexander always writes with such a heart-felt emotion and Within My Heart was no exception. Her characters are so well crafted that you truly feel like they could just walk off the page. There were places where I smiled and places where I got the Kleenex. To me, that's good writing when it evokes those kinds of emotions. Rachel was a strong heroine who let fear keep her from the thing she longed for most. Rand was a really great hero. I loved how he was with Rachel. I think the back of the book explains it very well when it says "Sometimes the greatest step of faith is taken neck-deep in fear." Although this is the third book in the Timber Ridge Reflections Series I didn't feel lost, however, it makes me want to read the previous two books to find out the history of these characters. I thoroughly enjoyed Within My Heart and would definitely recommend it. A thank you goes to Bethany House for sending me this complimentary copy for my review.

Book I've Been Reading...

Sherry's bookshelf: read

Almost Like Being in Love
Wanted: Royal Princess Miracle Bride: Royal Hearts of Mondoverde Series, Vol. 3
Her Rancher Bodyguard
Traces of Guilt
The Stronghold
Close to You
Protecting Her Daughter
The Goodbye Bride
The Rancher's First Love
Reclaiming His Past
Keeper of the Stars
Cold Shot
Mermaid Moon
Thin Ice
Buried Secrets
Murder at Black Lake
Christmas With Miss Austen
Falling Like Snowflakes
Married 'til Monday
Second Chance Hero

Sherry's favorite books »