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Christian Novel Review

Having always been an avid reader, since becoming a Christian I have found a wealth of reading material in Christian bookshops and in various second hand bookshops. I have found that in Christian novels one often finds truths that help in one’s Christian walk. I enjoy reading about how the various characters deal with life, and I also find I am the richer for reading a really good Christian novel. Certain authors, through their books, give you a real insight into their joys and struggles, which I find very interesting. The books which I am going to review are those which I have really enjoyed, and have read at least twice – some books, for example the “Mark of the Lion “ series by Francine Rivers, I have read at least five times each. The first books that I am going to talk about are the latest two novels by Francine Rivers,


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Tuesday, 20 April 2021

TRACE OF DOUBT by DIANN MILLS

Publication date 7/9/21
I always look forward to a new novel by DIANN MILLS and have never been disappointed! TRACE OF DOUBT is no exception. It is a thrilling story, with just enough romance and a really good Christian message.
When Shelby Pierce comes out of jail after fifteen years and is dropped off at Valleysburg in Texas she is not only physically strong, from having had to ward off attacks from inmates and guards, she is strong in the Lord, having had a very real conversion experience. However, she has secrets, which threaten her new found freedom, and that of her family and new friends.
Denton McClure, her friendly next door neighbour, also has a secret which Shelby uncovers, making her suspicious of his motives.
The characters are well defined, and, as the author portrays them, we see sacrifice, unconditional love and forgiveness, as opposed to greed, hatred, lies and manipulation.
There are so many twists and turns in this story that you will be kept in suspense right to the end.
I cannot recommend Trace of Doubt highly enough. It is an inspiring and exciting read.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Tyndale House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.




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Wednesday, 14 April 2021

MAKE YOU FEEL MY LOVE by ROBIN LEE HATCHER

Publication date 13/7/21
MAKE YOU FEEL MY LOVE by ROBIN LEE HATCHER is a beautifully written split timeline romance novel in which the two stories run seamlessly side by side meeting up when an old and valuable violin is found in Rosemary Townsend's antique shop.
Both Chelsea Spencer, in present time, and Cora Anderson, in 1895, escape abusive and controlling situations by moving to the small town of Chickadee Creek, each of them wondering if their past lives will catch up with them there.
There are really great characters and beautiful love stories in each time period and there is strong biblical truth running through the novel. It is good to see, amongst other things, Chelsea overcoming fear by holding on to her faith and the Bible verses that she knows, Cora choosing faith over superstition and Liam Chandler coming to Chickadee Creek in order to get his priorities in order.
The novel is about sacrificial love, redemption, forgiveness, the healing of broken lives and the strength that comes from the Lord when one is weak.
It is altogether an enjoyable and inspirational read and one I cannot recommend highly enough.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Thomas Nelson. The opinions in this review are completely my own.


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Monday, 12 April 2021

PROVENANCE by CARLA LAUREANO

Publication date 3/8/21
PROVENANCE by CARLA LAUREANO is a beautifully written romance novel with unforgettable characters and an encouraging story. There is a strong Christian message, namely the importance of dealing with one's past so that it does not affect our future, forgiveness and restoration.
When Kendall Green goes to Jasper Lake to accept her inheritance, she has no idea that she is part of the town's history. In fact other people seem to know more about her provenance than she does. Being a designer whose main interest is in restoring historical homes and sourcing antiques, she is the ideal person to help save the town from a huge commercial development, but will she really want to be involved in restoring something her family, who seem to have rejected her when she was five, once owned? It is in researching the provenance of her grandmother's house, with the young mayor, Gabriel Brandt's assistance, that she gradually learns the truth about where she came from. I love the comparison of the foster parents, who wanted to adopt her, with God the Father who is waiting with open arms to adopt us.
Although Gabe has issues with his father he realizes that Kendall was in a much worse situation when she was growing up. Being a "fixer" he desperately wants to save the town from being ruined by Phil Burton and his grandiose development ideas, but knows that Kendall needs the money the sale of the houses will bring in to save her design business. As he gets to know Kendall he realizes that he wants to fix her problems as well and I really like to see his kindness and strong Christian values. Both Kendall and Gabe have great depth of character in spite of, or maybe because of, what they have been through.
It is altogether a lovely read and one I highly recommend.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Tyndale House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.

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Saturday, 10 April 2021

GIRLS OF SUMMER by C E HILBERT

GIRLS OF SUMMER by C E HILBERT has everything that makes a really excellent romantic thriller, together with an inspiring Christian message. It is a gripping story, and one in which things are not always as they seem, not only as far as the suspense goes, but also in the area of human relationships. It is a book about family dynamics and the restoration of broken people.
Charlotte Dixon is the product of a seemingly loveless childhood. She is taken advantage of by her mother, who has ties with the Russian mafia and is siphoning money out of Charlotte's New York gallery to fund her gambling debts. When her father dies he leaves his fortune to Charlotte and her half sister Georgie, if they can live together and run the business for a year. Georgie is a loving Christian girl, who had a great childhood, and whose mother treated Charlotte as her own daughter during the short period that she was allowed to spend with her father. Will Charlotte ever be able to settle into life with her noisy, interfering Southern family, or will she give up and go back to her life in New York?
When the FBI interview her with regard to her mother's involvement with organized crime, things literally start "blowing up" around her.
Does she know more than she is telling the agents and her handsome in house lawyer, Mac Taylor, and is she a willing partner in her mother's crimes? And what about her Russian grandmother - where does she fit into it all?
I will leave it to you to find out!
I cannot recommend Girls of Summer highly enough as an exciting and inspirational read.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from the Pelican Book Group. The opinions in this review are completely my own.



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Thursday, 1 April 2021

LET IT BE ME by BECKY WADE

Publication date 4/5/21
LET IT BE ME by BECKY WADE is a beautifully written love story in which the author deals sensitively with many subjects, such as pediatric heart surgery, loyalty amongst friends, forgiveness, second chances and unselfish love; and through it all we get the sense of a loving Father God, being in control and bringing good out of all things. We also see God's miracle power at work as He protects and heals broken people, both physically and emotionally.
Leah Montgomery is very young when she becomes her brother Dylan's caregiver due to their father's disappearance and their mother's maternal ineptitude. Leah is a mathematical genius and gave up her chance of studying at Princeton and becming a math professor in order to provide a stable life for her beloved brother. She is a woman of logic and reason and tells everyone she does not "do romance". When she finds out that she is not related to her biological parents, she searches everywhere to find out what went wrong on the day she was born.
Dr Sebastian Grant is a pediatric heart surgeon who does not let anyone close to him, except for his friend Ben Coleman and Ben's family. When his mother, his only living relative, died, he became rebellious and fought his way through school.
I do not want to tell you any more, but there is a great deal more to Let It Be Me. I really loved this novel and cannot recommend it highly enough.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Bethany House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.


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Sunday, 14 March 2021

A WOMAN OF WORDS by ANGELA HUNT

Publication date 4/5/21
A WOMAN OF WORDS is the third novel in the Jerusalem Road series by ANGELA HUNT but it can easily stand alone. This author has an amazing way of writing biblical fiction that enhances rather than detracts from the truth of God's Word.
The story starts with the disciple Matthew being called from Capernaum to help with the Lord's work in Jerusalem. When he arrives there he is disappointed to hear that he will be doing accounting work instead of preaching to the lost with the other disciples.
We see Mary, the mother of Jesus, being led by the Holy Spirit to ask Matthew to help her write about Jesus' life. After a rather rocky start, they form a strong bond when Matthew realizes that the story of Jesus is to be just that, with none of him or his clever way with words in it. This really spoke to me. How many times do we push ourselves into another's story in order to make a good impression?
It is a fascinating way to look at the birth of Matthew's gospel, with Mary and Matthew interviewing people who were with Jesus when neither of them were there.
I like to see Mary portrayed as an ordinary woman who was divinely appointed to bear the Saviour of the world but is in no way divine herself nor should she be seen as such.
The novel is full of wonderful and well loved biblical characters together with the ongoing threat from Rome and many of the Pharisees.
I am not going to tell you any more of the story for fear of spoiling things for you.
I highly recommend A Woman Of Words to anyone who enjoys biblical fiction and who loves God's Word, or for anyone who is searching for the truth about Jesus and His gospel.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Bethany House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.


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Tuesday, 23 February 2021

ALL THAT REALLY MATTERS by NICOLE DEESE

Publication date 6/4/21
ALL THAT REALLY MATTERS by NICOLE DEESE is a well written novel which is equal parts amusing and serious, as top trending influencer, Molly McKenzie of Makeup Matters with Molly, meets Silas Whittaker, his staff and the underprivileged and hurting young adults at The Bridge Youth Home. Her life will never be the same.
I love the way the author shows us this self- focused young woman, whose only friends are on line, excepting for her even more self-focused boyfriend/ agent, learning what really matters in life.
It is a very real book with very real characters and in which the author addresses very real issues. The Christian message is also very real.
I cannot recommend All That Really Matters highly enough. It is a most enjoyable and lovely read.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Bethany House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.


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