Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | July 23, 2014

Take a trip to Deep Haven. Again.

when i fall in loveVisiting Deep Haven is like going to a family reunion.  Darek, Casper, Grace, Eden and Owen are almost like cousins I get to catch up with every so often, and I miss them as soon as the story is over and begin the wait until the next reunion.  So far, we’ve seen Darek and Eden find the love of their life.  “When I Fall in Love” begins with Darek and Eve’s wedding.  Grace, the shy Christiansen who never finds herself in the spotlight, is given a trip to Hawaii to attend a three-week culinary school as appreciation for catering the wedding.  One of Owen’s hockey teammates is also attending and is asked to make sure Grace finds her way around.

For someone who doesn’t like to venture outside of Deep Haven, Grace discovers a whole new world, and a new guy, Maxwell Sharpe, who doesn’t want to open his heart because of the likelihood that he will contract Huntingdon”s disease.  Grace and Max can choose the safety and security of their careers, or they can follow what their hearts truly desire.  Does God want us to choose the safe path or the path that’s unknown but leads to personal fulfillment?  That is what Grace and Max must decide.  Grace’s faith is tested in this third installment of Susan May Warren‘s The Christiansen Family Series.

Come spend some time with the Christiansens in Deep Haven.  You will never want to leave.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Tyndale, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | July 21, 2014

Live intentionally in a chaotic world

blue bikeTsh Oxenreider and her family moved to Turkey in 2008 and lived there for several years before returning to the states.  It was just as difficult to return as it was to leave.  Having grown accustomed to the culture in Turkey, it was difficult to return to the fast-paced busy lifestyle Americans call normal.  Tsh and her husband, Kyle, made an intentional decision to live a simple life which meant giving up some of the luxuries we enjoy.  “Notes From a Blue Bike” is Tsh’s story of how buying less and making healthy food choices, makes life simple and more enjoyable.

More than a memoir, “Notes From a Blue Bike” offers advice to readers about how to make simple changes to enjoy life more and not spend so much time on non-essential things.  Living the simple life isn’t necessarily easy particularly in American culture, but it can be gratifying to slow down and enjoy the life God has given us.  If you are looking to simplify your life, try out Tsh’s new book or find her on her website at theartofsimple.net.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Shelton Interactive, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | July 21, 2014

House flipping can be dangerous

flipHouse flippers Brad and Julie Evans buy an old house in Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island.  The deal was too good to pass up, but the renovations are more than they bargained for when strange things start happening.  When their own house burns down, Julie and Brad must move into the house they are trying to flip.  Things really heat up between the spirits in the house and Julie and Brad.  They soon discover that the house is hiding a secret–it was once a part of the underground railroad and remains from one of the escaped slaves was found in a secret room in the basement.  They also discover that the daughter of the former owner and a suitor had a complicated relationship further complicated by their death.

“The Flip” by Michael Phillip Cash is a night-time ghost story similar to what someone would tell around a campfire.  Even though the story is predictable, the plot moves quickly and the book can easily be read in one sitting.  If you are a fan of horror and the paranormal, you won’t want to miss this tale of a house with a history and ghosts on a mission.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bostick Communications, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | July 11, 2014

‘Seagrass Pier’ suspenseful and keeps you guessing

seagrassElin Summerall has recently lost her husband.  She has had a heart transplant and is taking care of her elderly mother and young daughter.  Along with her new heart, Elin has also received the memories of the donor’s murder–memories that must be dealt with before she can move on with her life.  She moves to a remote cottage on Hope Island to get away from her fears and anxiety, but it appears that the murderer is stalking her.   Her daughter’s father (a story itself) is an FBI agent who is determined to protect his little girl and Erin.  He wants to be included in his daughter’s life, but Elin is not sure how this will affect their lives.

‘Seagrass Pier’ by Colleen Coble is filled with drama and suspense.  The ending was quite a shock.  Coble does an excellent job of keeping readers guessing until the end.  Don’t miss this third installment in the Hope Beach series.  You don’t have to read the first two to thoroughly enjoy this one; however, you will certainly want to read them after this one.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | July 11, 2014

Lipp encourages struggling moms in ‘I need some help here!’

helpFrom the moment we find out we are going to be mothers, the planning begins–from the colors of the nursery to the dreams for college.  But no matter how much we dream about having perfect children, something happens to spoil the illusion–like the terrible twos (or terrible ones, twos, threes, etc.).

We can plan for everything, but nothing prepares us for the child who is different or struggling or troubled or the child who is always making poor choices and expects you to bail them out of the consequences.  How do you handle yourself when your kids don’t go according to plan?  Do you pile on the guilt?  Are you ashamed?  Embarrassed?

Kathi Lipp’s “I need some help here!’ is an amazing resource for moms who need hope in their parenting.  Though we may want to panic or thrust ourselves into guilt and shame, Lipp provides practical wisdom and encouragement from moms who have been there.  The prayers for your child and for yourself at the end of each chapter are useful during those times when you don’t know how or what to pray.  If you are struggling with parenting, “I need some help here!’ is perfect and you will feel the support of those who have been where you are.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free as part of a book blogging tour.   I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | June 21, 2014

Odyssey Adventure Club offering $5.00 membership first month

focus on the family adventures in odyssey odyssey adventure clubI have been a big fan of Adventures in Odyssey since my oldest daughter was a preschooler.  We loved listening to the gang’s stories and learning big lessons.  When my youngest was born, I started listening again and even began listening online on my own.  I was captivated by the ongoing adventures and keeping up with Whit and the Imagination Station.

The lessons learned during each episode was fodder for great conversations with my children from bullying to lying to stealing.  Each lesson the gang learned was an opportunity to teach my children a lesson.  Now, with the Odyssey Adventure Club, children can listen online and perform activities to help them apply what they have learned.

With the first month membership fee of $5.00, your child can get a taste of the Club and you can see how much fun you and your child can have learning about Whit’s End and Imagination Station.  If you choose to continue the membership, you will pay $15.00 per month.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a free one year membership  from Litfuse Publicity Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

blind trustKate Adams has a difficult time with trust, but when her elderly neighbor is suspected of counterfeiting, she is determined to prove her innocence.  “Blind Trust” is book two in Sandra Orchard‘s Port Aster Secrets series.  I was disappointed to find that I started reading the second book.  You definitely need to read “Deadly Devotion” if you want to understand what’s going on in “Blind Trust”.  The second book doesn’t offer a recap or do any characterization.  The author assumes readers have read “Deadly Devotion” and some of what’s happening are not easily understood or followed.  The book ends on a cliffhanger so you will have to read continuing books to finish the story.

“Blind Trust” left me frustrated at the end.  I am not certain it is memorable enough for me to want to purchase the next book when it is released next summer.  If you haven’t read book one, don’t read book two.  If you do, you will be confused, frustrated and disappointed because of the author’s assumptions that readers are familiar with the characters and the story.  There were some things that just didn’t make any sense without an explanation.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | June 18, 2014

‘A Moment in Time’ is a fun summer romance

momentBook two in Tracie Peterson’s Lone Star Brides series, “A Moment in Time” focuses on Alice Chesterfield, Marty Wythe’s personal maid, who survived an attack that left her scarred and who is being followed by a man who threatens to harm her if she doesn’t return something her father had taken from him.  Jake and Marty Wythe, the main characters in “A Sensible Arrangement”, are forced to move to Texas after the economic collapse and take Alice with them where she meets Marty’s nephew.  More discoveries about her father and the return of her mother and brother she thought were dead threaten to interfere with her new life.

Alice makes a better subject than Marty who is still just as self-centered and stubborn as she was in “A Sensible Arrangement”.  Alice, on the other hand, puts others first in spite of her fears and doesn’t understand Marty’s reluctance to move back to Texas.  In fact, the more Marty explains her reasons, the more irritating and frustrating her character becomes.  “A Moment in Time”, once you begin reading Alice’s story, is an inspiring testimony of a woman eager to move out of the past, learn to forgive and trust God.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing  Group, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | June 18, 2014

Planning a Christ-centered wedding

weddingThe average cost of a wedding today is $25,000.  Social media has given a new meaning to societal pressure with brides trying to outdo one another in creating the perfect day, but, after all, the end result is always the same–two people get married.

If you desire a Christ-centered marriage, you should begin with a Christ-centered wedding.  Catherine Strode Parks and Linda Strode, mother and daughter, co-wrote “A Christ-Centered Wedding”, as a guidebook for couples who want to use their wedding as an opportunity to present the gospel.  This book is full of useful ideas for putting together a wedding that puts Christ at the center.  Strode and Parks will help you stay organized and focused.  “A Christ-Centered Wedding” is a valuable resource in planning a wedding.  It is a reminder of the true focus and how to present it to those in attendance.  Instead of all the Bride’s magazines, read this book or, at least, read this book first.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Shelton Interactive, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | June 18, 2014

A guide to the book of Daniel–’The Derision of Heaven’

Daniel

Although Daniel is a difficult book to understand, it is nevertheless an important book today as our society is seeing many of the themes from the book of Daniel replayed –Christian values and morals are being mocked; Christians are being discriminated against and hostility towards believers is growing by the day.  Michael Whitworth’s “The Derision of Heaven” tackles the questions of how we can be the “light of the world” in abject darkness and how God can still be in control.  Whitworth’s guide is an urgent message to the church today.

I read Whitworth’s book looking for some insight into the book of Daniel and received much more.  After reading “The Derision of Heaven”, you will not only have a better understanding of the book of Daniel, you will also better understand what is going on in the world today and how you should respond as a light in a dark world.

The talking points at the end of each chapter offer the author’s commentary on each section of Daniel which will guide you in seeing how Daniel relates to the world today.  It will also help facilitate discussion in a small group study.  It is inspiring and encouraging.

Click here to purchase from Amazon.com

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from BookCrash, as part of their Book Review Blogger Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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