I have been given the opportunity to do some reviews on some books from a few different publishers. Some of them do not quite fit into the focus I have for Living Infuzion, but obviously have some good information. Here are some of my perspectives on some pretty good books! Enjoy!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Revealing Jesus - Darlene Zschech

"Powerful Encounters With the Heart of Our Savior For Every Day.  Do you long for more of God's presence? Do you ache to see Him at work in your life? Do you desire His peace and rest? Renowned worship leader Darlene Zschech invites you to gather with her around the Word of God. Born out of her own yearnings that she poured onto the pages of journals, these meditations and Scriptures reveal Jesus and speak of His finished work--how He tenderly cares for you and wants you to know Him.  Honest, raw, and beautifully written, these devotions will inspire your journey and encourage you in every season. Come, sit at the feet of our Lord, be strengthened in your weakness, embrace His love for you, and breathe in His peace."

I have been looking for a good devotional for some time, so I jumped at the chance to review this book.  I must say, it is a wonderful devotional which arrived at a perfect time!  It is laid out over 365 days, so I started reading from the day I got it.  Each devotion is only one page, which is perfect for a quick morning read before I have to get my three young kids ready for the day.  Don't let the length fool you though.  Each page is full of depth that leaves you with a lot to think on; but also has wonderful encouragements and biblical truths that will uplift you as well.  Darlene is very open and honest in her reflections and let me say they are challenging and encouraging.  I am so happy that I chose to review this book and highly recommend it for anyone looking for a short, but powerful and impacting devotional.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

The Guardian - Beverly Lewis

"Come home to Hickory Hollow, Pennsylvania--the beloved setting where Beverly Lewis's celebrated Amish novels began--with new characters and new stories of drama, romance, and the ties that draw people together.  When Jodi Winfield comes to Lancaster to house-sit, the last thing she expects to find is a disheveled little girl alone on the side of the road. The young teacher is mystified when she learns there have been no reports of a missing child, and the girl herself is no help, since she can't speak English. It's as if the child appeared out of nowhere.  Then Jodi turns her attention to Hickory Hollow--and the cloistered world of the Old Order Amish--in search of answers."

This is the third book in Beverly Lewis' Home to Hickory Hollow series.  I always enjoy reading Mrs. Lewis' books.  Her vivid descriptions and characters make the words on the page just come alive.  I can just picture the little Amish houses and would love to sit and have tea with the wise woman!  I loved how the characters of Jodi (an English woman) and Maryanna (an Amish woman) although lead drastically different lives, each are used by God to help the other grow and flourish for Him.  I just saw that there will be a fourth book in the series, The Secret Keeper, coming out in September and I cannot wait!!  This is an excellent book to add to a summer reading list!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favorite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Jennifer: An O'Malley Love Story - Dee Henderson

It's a summer of change for Jennifer O'Malley.  The busy physician has a pediatrics practice in Dallas, Texas, and meeting and falling in love with surgeon Tom Peterson is adding a rich layer to her life. She's sorting out how to introduce Tom to her family--she's the youngest of seven--and thinking about marriage.  She's falling in love with Jesus too, and knows God is good. But that faith is about to be tested, and in a way she didn't expect. The results will soon transform her entire family." 

I was beyond thrilled to see this book in the list of books to review for the month of May.  Dee Henderson was the very first Christian author that I was exposed to.  I love her O'Malley series and have long hoped to see Jennifer's story be written.  Although short in length, Jennifer's story is a great read, a bittersweet romance.  Jennifer is a successful pediatrician who loves what she does; but struggles with the idea of God because of the sickness she sees.  A chance meeting with Tom starts her on a path of self examination and opening herself up to the idea of God.  Just when everything is going well, she is dealt a shocking blow that will put her new found faith to the test.  You don't have to have read the rest of the O'Malley series to understand all that is going on; but it was really nice to see the drop in the pond that starts the ripples that make up the rest of the series.  I highly recommend this book but also suggest that you pick up the other five books to watch Jennifer's story continue to unfold. 

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favorite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Friday, May 10, 2013

The Fantasy Fallacy by Shannon Ethridge

Now here is a book that is not afraid to go where angels fear to tread.  Over the years I have read many Christian books on the topic of sex.  This one intrigued me because it is set up as a response to the 50 Shades of Grey novels.  I kept hearing about these books, and wondered if it was something that I could read.   I have always tried to be an intellectually responsible person, and thought that if I was going to read the rebuttal, that I would have to read the novels to ensure that Ms. Ethridge had read them herself.  I was pleased when she wrote about reading the novels, and then she described some of her reactions in the initial part of the book.
But this book is SO MUCH MORE than just a rebuttal to the 50 Shades novels.  Ethridge digs deep into the healthy and unhealthy appetites of people.  She draws on her years of experience as a speaker, counsellor, and author to speak to some really dark issues of sexuality.  This book may not be for everyone.  It challenged my comfort zone, and I have been exposed to a lot over the years.  Some of my exposure has been due to bad choices, and some just because of the way our culture is… overly sexually charged and even moving sex into the ultimate experience… even making sex a god on its own.
She uses practical cases from her practice, and from her own life to illustrate not just God’s standards for sexuality, but to show why those guidelines are in place.  I can see many examples of where “just a little thing” leads to something over the long term.
Pick up this book if you are a Christian dabbling in the 50 Shades novels, or if you have some things that have hidden in your heart.  This book can help you find some wisdom in how to proceed, bring you face to face with God’s healing, and help point you in the direction of getting the help you need.
This book was provided to me for my unbiased review by Booksneeze.
For Christian books and gifts, either online or when in Ottawa, visit Salem Storehouse.