Thursday, January 29, 2015


I don’t think there are enough adjectives to describe what an exceptional story Sally Bradley has penned in KEPT. Riveting, authentic, touching, painful, are just a few that come to mind. Easily one of the best novels I’ve ever read.  This is not a typical Christian romance book.  It is not set in the sanitized world most have come to expect from the Christian genre.  That’s what makes KEPT so amazing.  It’s real, it’s relevant, not sterile and watered down to insure the Christian community is not offended. The story of redemption is front and center even if the reader must endure the crudeness of realty.
From outward appearances, Miska Tomlinson looks like she has it all together.  A freelance editor who lives in a luxury condo with a view of the Chicago lakefront, she waits patiently for Mark−the man she loves−to leave his wife so they can have a life together. Dillon Foster is new to the building and an enigma to Miska.  A spiritual man she can’t help but be drawn to, though their outlooks on life are completely different.
Dillon’s life is cemented in his faith and his values, and though Miska’s lifestyle is completely opposite of his, he can’t help but be fascinated by her. He spends time trying to get to know her, understand her, and show her she is selling herself short. Thinking they are building a relationship, he is devastated when he finds out exactly how Miska has chosen to live her life.  He does his best to keep his distance, but somehow their paths continue to cross.
Miska’s life is quickly spiraling out of control.  Grasping for answers, she opens herself up to the God that Dillon vows his allegiance to.  Though she finds a peace she has never experienced before, she can’t help but feel disheartened knowing she will never have the love of the one man she truly respects.
An amazing book!  An amazing story!
As a fellow writer I am excited to see incredible stories like KEPT breaking stereotypes and challenging the boundaries of Christian fiction.  The self-publishing and independent publishing markets are shedding light on talented Christian artist that write with depth and realism without sacrificing the power of God in the lives of those others might choose to ignore.
Well done, Ms. Bradley!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

My Review - The Song

I thoroughly enjoyed THE SONG by Chris Fabry, and I can’t wait until the movie releases next month (Feb 2015)

5 out of 5 stars
Jed King lives in the shadow of his father, a legendary country singing star. Though he wants to be known for his own songs, people expect him to sing the hits his father made famous. Unfortunately, Jed’s father wasn’t known only for his music. His broken marriage and the affair that produced Jed was tabloid fodder and something Jed has always had to live with.  Determined to make it on his own merit, Jed must play venues no matter how small or paltry them may seem. When he’s booked to perform at a small festival at a middle of nowhere vineyard, he is enchanted by Rose, the vineyard owner’s daughter.
Rose and Jed’s attraction for each other is immediate and all-consuming. With their faith in God and commitment to each other, they embark on a whirlwind ride when one of Jed’s songs hits it big. Jed is more than aware of the lures and temptations that can happen on the road, but his love for Rose is strong and pure. Jed thrives on the road and draws his energy from his fans. Rose begins to feel like she and their son are taking a backseat to Jed’s career, causing a strain on the relationship whenever Jed’s is home.  He assures Rose that nothing will ever drive them apart.  That is, until Shelby Bale joins Jed’s tour.
Shelby is everything Jed is not.  While Jed is known as the conservative, love song balladeer, Shelby is known as a honkytonk wild child.  The unorthodox chemistry between Jed and Shelby catapults their careers to the next level, leading to an extended tour and more time away from Rose. It isn’t long before Shelby introduces Jed to the wilder side of living, causing him to lose focus, control, and everything he has built with Rose.
With their lives unraveling, Jed and Rose must decide if what they once had is worth fighting for, or is it too late for them to get back the love they once shared.
THE SONG is loosely based on the Song of Solomon and the downfalls of the foolish man. At times it was difficult to read because I didn’t want to hate Jed. But the pain he caused Rose seemed unforgivable. THE SONG painted a picture of what many marriages suffer at the hands of selfishness and pride. When “I” becomes greater than “us” someone is most certainly going to get hurt.  Putting the pain aside and moving forward is a hard cross to bear, but when forgiveness is all that stands between you, your faith, and your family, the excruciating road must be walked, and prayerfully both parties will emerge on the other side.
Watch for the movie in February 2015.

Monday, January 26, 2015

My Review - At Home in Last Chance

4 out of 5 stars
AT HOME IN LAST CHANCE, is the third installment in the A Place Called Home series.  Though the plot is simple, the characters are rich, especially when we get to catch up with characters from the previous two installments.
Kaitlyn Reed’s life has been one bad decision after another.  After visiting her brother in Last Chance six-months ago, Kaitlyn took off, leaving her seven-year-old daughter behind. Now Kaitlyn is back in Last Chance, trying to gain the trust of her brother and the love of her daughter.  She is determined to get her life in order, but her self-destructive ego continues to remind her she is nothing but a screw-up.
Steven Braden was much like Kaitlyn.  He too ran when life got tough, but he’s back in Last Chance trying to mend his relationships with his family before he goes into the police academy.  The people of Last Chance don’t expect much from Steven, and always the charmer, Steven decides to prove them wrong.
Kaitlyn and Steven continue to cross each other’s path.  It’s not hard in a small town, but neither one of them think much about the other.  Steven’s grandmother warns him away from Kaitlyn knowing she has enough to deal with without Steven complicating things.  And Kaitlyn’s brother knows all too well that Steven is not someone he wants spending time with his sister.  But eventually, Kaitlyn and Steven acknowledge they are cut from the same cloth, and find themselves cheering each other on to prove everyone else wrong.
AT HOME IN LAST CHANCE was just as enjoyable as the previous two books in the series.  It was great to see Kaitlyn redeem herself from where we left her in book two.  And Steven is the typical screw-up that cares more about what people say about him then he leads on.  I liked the bantering between these two characters, and the added support of the other residents of Last Chance.
Book provided for review purposes.
Available January 2015 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

My Review - Hidden Agenda

5 out of 5 stars
Lisa Harris has done it again. HIDDEN AGENDA is packed with action, suspense, drama, great characters, and a great romance.
In book three of the Southern Crimes series, we find out that Michael Hunt is very much alive.  With his cover blown, suffering from a beating, and facing death for a second time, he is rescued in the nick of time by Olivia and Ivan Hamilton.  Michael wants nothing more than to get home to his family and the help they can provide, but the cartel has a hit out on him and corrupt officials in the Atlanta police department want to silence him as well.  It’s not enough that he has to figure out how to clear his name without getting caught, but now he has to make sure Olivia and Ivan are safe as well.  Complicating matters even more is the attraction he feels for Olivia.  She’s strong and beautiful, and just so happens to be the daughter of the kingpin he’s spent eight months trying to take down. 
What in sues is a page-turning odyssey of close calls and nick-of-time rescues.  Michael and Olivia are as strong as they are vulnerable.  Both of them see their opposite worlds standing between them and any future they might have, but it doesn’t diminish their quickly growing feelings for each other.
I really loved HIDDEN AGENDA, as I did the other two books in the series.  The action is riveting and the characters are warm and genuine.  It was also a treat to get to check back in with Avery, Jackson, Emily, and Mason.  I will definitely be looking forward to Ms. Harris’ next series.
Book provided for review purposes.
Available December 2014 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

My Review - Dead Gorgeous

3 out of 5 stars
DEAD GORGEOUS was not necessarily my cup of tea, but if you like the old, traditional whodunit stylings of Agatha Christie or say, Murder She Wrote, I think you will find this novel entertaining.
Set in the world of fashion, D.I. Angela Costello must find out who killed Kirsty Manners. But the more Angela digs, the more she finds that Kirsty was not just a beautiful and aspiring model, but also a conniving and opportunistic person, with enemies at every turn.  Angela and her team must piece together what little evidence they have in order to find their killer.  Working with a meticulous and keen talent of unearthing clues that are barely there, D.I. Costello narrows down the list of possible suspects until only one stands out.
Though DEAD GORGEOUS was intriguing as a whodunit, the characters just didn’t seem that engaging to me.  The interaction between them never really evoked any emotion or connection.  The plot and the precision was there but the characters just seemed to fall a little flat.  DEAD GORGEOUS is a striped down mystery where the suspects and clues take center stage.
Book provided for review purposes.