Saturday, August 17, 2013

12 Days in Africa: A Mother's Journey by Lisa Sanders {Book Review}



Lisa traveled to Uganda with her teenage son on a 12 day mission trip. In an orphanage, her world view abruptly changed as she held a shivering, emaciated little boy who lay dying of malaria. This experience and others while on the trip were so profound that she is compelled to share them with you. Come and walk with Lisa through Uganda as God shows her His different definitions of “mother.”

From the publisher: All profits from this book will be donated to build lifesaving wells in villages desperate for clean water.

I enjoyed this book for the details of her trip and her experiences there. Some of them similar to my trip to Ethiopia, but some of them different as she was out in the country and we were near the city. I did find the book a little disjointed, though. The author states that this book grew out of a pamphlet she created for people who asked about her trip and to give out at her presentations. I can see this, as the beginning of the book is more like a bullet point format. For the first several chapters she lists people's names and city names and then describes them. The later chapters of the book where she includes her stories and stories from others that went with her were much more enjoying. I found myself reading the first several chapters as if they were a dictionary to help understand the rest of the book, and then the "meat" of the book felt too short. There were also times where she would relate a story from an event and then a couple chapters later re-visit the event with more detail. I would have preferred to have both of those stories together and given greater detail. Overall, this book is a good, quick read allowing you to see some of the amazing things that happen when you allow God to use your heart to mother those who aren't your own.

I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.

Links:

About the Author:
Lisa Sanders followed her new husband to Alaska for his first job out of college. Twenty-six years later, with a successful business and her last child about to leave for college, she discovered in Uganda that the gifts of mercy, love, and compassion given to women are meant to be shared with children not only in our own homes, but across the street and around the world. Lisa lives in Anchorage, Alaska, with her husband Greg, two dogs, and her two sons when they are not away at University. She serves on the board of directors for Hope4Kids International.


BookSneeze® provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.


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Sunday, August 11, 2013

When Mockingbirds Sing by Billy Coffey {Book Review}


The Norcross family moved south to start over. Planning on focusing on their family, they gained a puzzle. Their daughter, Leah, found an imaginary friend, the Rainbow Man. Or was he only imaginary? If the Rainbow Man started sending messages to your town or your family through a 9 year old girl, would you listen?

I really enjoyed When Mockingbirds Sing. I did have some questions about the theology in the book. Some of the references were very definite such as the belief that the lottery is a sin and that the character feels shame and needs to hide his actions when purchasing tickets. Others are vague such as the "Rainbow Man", believing in the "Maybe", and speaking about "Higher Things." One can interpret what the author means, but he leaves it ambiguous instead of confirming your suspicion. However, this paragraph from the main character is pretty clear, "He comes to us all... He's always with us. You and me aren't different. No one's different. It's just that I know I'm small and everyone else thinks they're big. That's why no one else can see Him. They pray and sing and say they love Him, but deep down they think they know better than He does. They do their own things because they think they're big enough. But they're not. No one's big enough." I love the symbolism in the author choosing a young girl with a speech impediment to be the one that the Rainbow Man chooses to relay His messages. God loves to work through our weaknesses. When we are weak, He is strong (2 Corinthians 12:9).

I give this 4 out of 5 stars.

Links:

BookSneeze® provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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Gone South by Meg Moseley {Book Review}


Letitia McComb has moved so many times that she doesn't feel she has a home town or an alma mater. But her moving was within Michigan, so she does feel like a Michigander. Her father was interested in his family's heritage, and share the good stories with Tish. When a chance came to buy he great-great's old house, should she take a chance at starting over again? Or should she stay in the comfort of her friends in the state she knows?

Gone South is about prodigals and people who don't have a place. But out of that feeling of displacement can come a beautiful belonging when you keep in mind that we are all children of God. This was a great read, and not a preachy book. Tish helps a prodigal and makes true life-long friends, showing that living the gospel is more important than preaching it.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars.

WaterBrook Multnoma provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Gardenias for Breakfast by Robin Jones Gunn {Book Review}


Abby's childhood summer in the south with Grand Lady was a blessing and a fairytale - one that she so wanted her daughter, Hannah, to experience. But the trip from Maui to Louisiana was expensive, and there was no way they could afford it. But she could dream and pray and wish.  When her prayer is answered, Abby and Hannah take a trip of a lifetime - not just a road trip but a relationship journey. Not everything is as you remember from when you are little, and sometimes it can give you insight and help for the present.

Gardenias for Breakfast is an inspirational walk through the family relationships between women - mother/daughter and grandmother/granddaughter - and how these two relationships affect each other. Through these relationships we can give amazing blessings to each other and inspire each other. This is a great read, full of things for women to ponder about their own relationships.

I give it 5 of 5 stars.

I borrowed this book from my local library. I was not required to write a review, positive or otherwise. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Free Kindle ebooks: Kids - Young Adult

I'm looking for books to bring along on vacation to keep us occupied without electronics. (Yay!!) While searching Amazon's Kindle ebooks section, I found these freebies I wanted to share with you. Click a picture to go to the book's page.

If you don't already have a Kindle or Kindle app, check them out here. You can download FREE apps for your iPhone, Android, PC, etc.

Note:
  • Amazon will change their prices without warning. Click through to verify the price.
  • I have not read these books. This list is not an endorsement or a review.

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Kids learning books:

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Find more free learning books here!

Enjoy!
 

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