Book Review: Stephen Mitchell’s Journey

Book Review: Stephen Mitchell’s Journey
Author: Isabella Alden
Characters: The Mitchell family: Pa, named Josiah, ma, named Phoebe, Sarah Jane, and Stephen
The Lucas family: mother, a dad who was a drunkard, Flora Ann, Meme,
Dele, Miranda, and Jake.
The Ransoms, Maxwell, the preacher of the area, and Helen, his sister, who lives with him
Gertrude Temple, ex girlfriend of Maxwell, and Hilary Colchester, a friend of Helen.

The Mitchells live on a farm which hasn’t been taken care of very well, so it’s run down and the farmhouse is dilapidated.  The soil is stony and depleted.
The Lucas’s live on an even worse piece of land, in a desolate looking shack of a home, which had become that way due to the father’s alcoholism and the son’s drunkenness and abuse of the family.
The story is a good picture of Godly Christian charity, of how to help others with what you have, even though it may not be much by the world’s standards. How Christians should do what they can to uplift and improve another’s circumstances, and how they should first and foremost, tell their neighbors about salvation through
Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God.  
It is also an illustration of how Christians can even help those who may be out to harm them, through patience, prayer, and kindness. How we should be alert for opportunities to do the Master’s work, and follow where He leads us.

The story, Stephen Mitchell’s Journey, is extremely well-written, organized, and flows smoothly from one family’s story to another, interconnecting with grace and thought-provoking ideas.

This story was in the book titled Grace Livingston Hill Collection No. 7, four complete novels, 3 by Grace Hill, and one by Isabella Alden. Published by Barbour Books. ISBN: 1-57748-825-3

Some background on Isabella Alden:Four complete novels

I found this pretty website about the author:https://isabellaalden.com/
A list of her books:
https://www.thriftbooks.com/a/isabella-macdonald-alden/248890/

Advertisements

Book Launching and Book Reviewing

Pretty soon, I’ll be reading these 2 new books, for Bethany House, and the other from Waterbrook and Multnomah!  One is THE TINDERBOX, by Beverly Lewis, and the other is

A SILKEN THREAD, by Kim Vogel Sawyer!  I’m really looking forward to reading both of these!  I love the storyline of Silken Thread, and I’ve almost always enjoyed Beverly Lewis’s  books.

Keep checking back for my reviews. THANKS!

Romans 10:  8-13;  John 3:16-21

 

Between Two Shores, by Jocelyn Green

Between Two Shores book review

This book was one of the best history lessons I’ve ever had. I knew almost nothing about the French and Indian war, which was a more of a war between the British colonies in America,and
the French. France eventually lost all Canadian land, and Britain got Florida and Upper Canada.
Jocelyn Green wrote about this war by introducing readers to Catherine Duval, the daughter of a
mixed race marriage, who was half French and half Mohawk. Catherine was a trader with
both the British and the French, and she managed a store on Lachine Island in Canada, along
with her abusive alcoholic father, and her sister Bright Star. A young woman named Thankful also
lived there, and her story is worth learning about, too. I won’t give it away here, though.
Catherine continues to trade and make money, until Samuel Crane, her ex-fiance shows up, and claims to have some secret information that he needs to share with a British officer. He needs Catherine to help
him deliver that information, and she is drawn to help Samuel because her people are starving
and the war is looming closer to her home.

 
This story takes you on a really intense and interesting journey through the lands and rivers
of Canada. During the trip, you almost feel as if you were part of the group, and when
a surprise turn of events happens, it’s really startling. Jocelyn Green is a talented storyteller,
weaving tons of facts into the lives of her characters, all of whom were inspired by the experiences of
real people.
This book also tells you about how God loves you, and sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, as a ransom
for many, to redeem you and set you free from sin.  That is the most important part of this book.

If you like Christian historical fiction, this would be
a good book for you to read.
I was part of Mrs. Green’s launch team, and was given a free copy of her book, in exchange for
a review and promotion of the book. My review is honest and totally my own.
Romans 10:9-13; John 3:16-21

Ribbon of Gold, by Cathy Marie Hake ~ book review

Ribbon of Gold by Cathy Marie Hake is part of a 4-novella book, called Woven Hearts.  Ribbon of Gold is about Isabel Shaw, a young woman who works at Stedman Mills in Massachusetts, weaving thirty-inch wide shirting on industrial sized looms.  She had left her family’s farm in New Hampshire to work at the textile mill so she could put money aside for her brother’s education.

Carter Stedman, the mill owner’s son, takes over running the operations, and is angered at the inhumane working conditions there.  He goes about righting the wrongs of his father, now deceased, and in the process, becomes enamored with Isabel.

The story is clean, and a comfortable read for any Christian woman.  The relationships in the story are interesting.   I liked the details Mrs. Hake included in Ribbon of Gold, which gives the reader a good picture of how it was to work in the cotton mills in 1846.

Starting from Scratch ~ book review~

Starting from Scratch is enjoyable from start to finish. Entertaining and rich in details, Kate Lloyd masterfully weaves the lives of her characters into a captivating story, rewarding the reader with a highly satisfying read that is difficult to put down. When I finished the book I found I wanted to read more of Kate’s books, and God willing, I shall. Mrs. Lloyd truly has a God-given talent for writing, and I do hope to see many more books from her pen.

Starting from Scratch is told in first-person narrative, and the main character, 29-year-old, unmarried Eva Lapp, presents her day to day life in a way that authentically reflects her struggle

between staying with the Amish community, or cutting the ties and living in the verboten world of Englichers.

She is basically uprooted from her childhood home and relocated into a new job as the manager of a small cafe at a
plant nursery which is fairly close to her old home. I liked how she persevered, and how she handled
uncomfortable situations with

insight and good-natured repartee.

A little bit of romance, not too much, and a lot of skillful relationship building.
Truly a good, clean Christian fiction book about the Amish, I recommend this to anyone who enjoys
Christian fiction.

Starting from Scratch (Lancaster Discoveries Book 2), reads very nicely as a stand alone
novel, too.

Kate Lloyd, author of Starting from Scratch:  

Her Website:  http://katelloyd.com/

Kate’s Blog:  http://katelloyd.com/blog/  Connect with Kate:  https://twitter.com/KateLloydAuthor

Her pinterest pages: https://www.pinterest.com/katelloydauthor/

Kate Lloyd on Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/katelloydauthor/

Where Lilacs Still Bloom, by Jane Kirkpatrick~book review

It is my opinion that Jane Kirkpatrick must be a woman with a very high I.Q. After reading some of her books, I believe she finds writing as an outlet for the restlessness that comes with being highly intelligent.
That being said, Mrs. Kirkpatrick has written a book that is about several people whose lives intersect
at some point, because of the dedication of Hulda Klager towards her lilacs, and her persistence in finding new, stronger varieties of lilacs.

It’s a pity some people might pass this book up, because they’ll miss learning about a German immigrant to America, who had a God-given talent for scientific gardening, and more than that, being a horticulturist, even though she never went past the 8th grade! Where Lilacs Still Bloom offers an abundance of hope, confidence, good life lessons, and a heart-warming look into the family and friends of this non-degreed greenskeeper and plant researcher.
This is a Christian historical fiction book, based on the true story and life of Hulda Klager.


The story starts in 1889, when Hulda was pregnant with their fourth child, and they’re getting ready to move to a farm.
You get to know her, and her husband Frank, who live on a farm in Washington state. She learns, from her dad, about grafting apple shoots onto saplings, and from that, she finds she can actually “invent” a better variety of apple, on that will peel more easily and taste more tart. You meet their children, and the other children who, by God’s wisdom, come to work and live on her farm, and learn about cross-pollination, soil management, and a host of other important details attached to Hulda’s life’s work. 

I can’t say enough good about this book! It’s easy to read, very interesting and full of facts, and written in such a way as to encourage readers to perhaps learn a bit more about the propagation of flowers, or discover and visit arboretums in the USA. There’s plenty of information to get you going, if you’re the least bit curious about learning more. I got really excited about it when Hulda successfully hybridized a new variety of lilac, and when she talked to famous authors such as Luther Burbank, who was a renowned hybridizer at the time.

One more thing, The Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens are now a national historic site!

The Lilac Gardens are located off I-5 exit 21, 30 minutes north of Portland, Oregon or 2.5 hours south of Seattle, Washington at 115 South Pekin Road, Woodland, Washington 98674. (Our mailing address is PO Box 828). The Gardens are open to the public most days of the year from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., with a $3.00 gate fee payable at the gate ($5 during lilac days, children 12 and under free) If you’d like to contact them, here are some
email addresses I got from their website: Contact the Lilac Gardens
HKLGTours@gmail.com Schedule bus/large group tours during Lilac Days
WoodlandLilacGardens@gmail.com Lilac Gardens publicity
HKLGPresident@gmail.com President, Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens Society
HKLGMembership@gmail.com Membership, Hulda Klager Lilac Gardens Society
HKLGGiftShop@gmail.com Gift Shop – open during Lilac Days only
HKLGHistoricHome@gmail.com Hulda’s home – open during Lilac Days only

Get a copy of Where Lilacs Still Bloom, and have a lovely time of reading about this nurturing and dedicated housewife who became famous just from cultivating her own flowers.

Thank you, Jane, for writing this book.  (no more whining from me! LOL)

Romans 10:9-13;  John 3:16-21

The Lady of Tarpon Springs book review~ highly recommended

Judith Miller is an excellent academic fact finder, and this book really kept my interest.

She researched the history of deep water diving for sponges in Tarpon Springs Florida during the early 1900s, and using that information, she wrote a delightful, suspenseful, insightful story about Zanna, Lucy, and Nicos, 3 people who were involved in the business of sponge diving in 1905, in Florida.

This book was SO good, in fact, that I’m planning on buying as many of her books as I can to add to my personal home library.  I also am hoping to let other Christians know about her books, and that they can rest assured that the book has high moral standards and they’ll enjoy the story to the very end.


Zanna Krykos is a lawyer, and back then, that was almost unheard of. Her traditional Greek family was at first against this career, but eventually accepted it. Her best friend, Lucy Penrose, is a doctor, also very rare back then! Lucy’s dad died unexpectedly, but had made her his designated beneficiary of a sponge diving business he was establishing and developing in order to bring more trade into Tarpon Springs.
The story goes on to describe how the business began, and then grew and grew into a healthy commercial trade in the area.
Within this superb story is the story of several people, including Zanna, Nicos Sevdalis and his experienced Greek sponge divers, the Rochester sisters, Bessie, Eugenia, and Viola, and Adelphos Pappas, who was a businessman, and greedy liar, but very good at hiding those flaws.
I was fascinated by all the information about Greek divers, and the early sponge business in Tarpon Springs. You’re in for a great treat and one of the most enjoyable history lessons of your life, when you read this book.

I highly recommend this book for another reason, and that is, Mrs. Miller kept the romance to a minimum, presented the romance in accordance with good values and common sense, in good taste, and will be totally acceptable to anyone with sound Christian values.

I feel comfortable in giving this book a 5 star rating in the genre of Christian historical fiction. It is suitable for clean reading, and definitely an absorbing and captivating story of business and life in Florida’s Tarpon Springs in 1905. I bought this book and am convinced it was worth every dollar spent.
Go get a copy, and have some fun reading!  Thank you Judith, for writing a wonderful book, using the talents GOD gave you, and making reading fun for us Christians again.  Keep writing this way, it’s perfect!

 

Nathan Ham Photography|www.whataham.com

 

Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (July 31, 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764231065
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764231063
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches

Betteken’s Refuge, by Diane Yoder

This is a moving, beautifully portrayed story of a Dutch Anabaptist martyr’s life, as seen through the eyes of her young daughter, Betteken Wens. The year is 1573, and the historical fiction story takes place in the city of
Antwerp, Belgium, the richest city in Europe at this time. In this story, the persecution of the Anabaptists is becoming more ominous, one reason being because they refused to join the state church, which was the Catholic church. Time after time, Betteken, her parents and family are witnesses to the public humiliation of devout born again Christians by the Catholic’s Spanish soldiers, who march both men and women through the streets, and then burn them alive, all because of their faith in Jesus Christ and the Word of God.

Even though this book was written for a much younger audience, I believe Christians of all ages will benefit greatly from reading Betteken’s Refuge.
Several footnotes document the persecution of the Catholics against the Protestants and the Anabaptists, such as the reference to St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre, in 1572.


The reader gets to know Mattheus and Maeyken, the parents of Betteken, and Adrien, and Hans, her brothers. You feel the tension in the air as the father leaves home again, in order to preach the Gospel to others in villages and cities, helping seekers to truly repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as the only way to eternal life and God the Father.
There are incredibly deep moments of faith and truth presented by the author, and many times I paused to think about the profundity of the perseverance of the saints in those times of great difficulty as their faith was tried, literally, by fire. Please take time to read this book, it will profit you greatly, and deepen your resolve to stand firm and remember that no matter what, for the believer, The LORD is my light and my salvation: whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not. Jesus will sustain ALL who surrender to Him.

If you have not yet repented of your sins and dedicated your life to God, I urge you to do so now. We know that God hears and answers prayer. Grace and peace be unto you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Read Romans 10:8-13, and be born again.
The back of Diane Yoder’s book has a full 2 pages explaining the way to God and peace. She is a faithful witness, and may her work continue to glorify God the Father, and Jesus Christ His only begotten Son.

Book Review~The Pastor Takes a Wife, by Anna Schmidt

The Pastor Takes a Wife, by Anna Schmidt

Mrs. Schmidt is a gifted author. This book was a “Love Inspired” paperback, which I usually stay FAR away from, but I’m glad I didn’t this time!  It’s published by Steeple Hills, 2010. The book has good discussion questions for book clubs, too.
It is a fresh, unblemished romance, focusing more on the stories of the characters than on some rhapsodic flirtations nonsense.  You can trust this book to actually reflect Christian values and morals.
This clean Christian novel completely outshines any contemporary romance novel I’ve read, for several reasons:
1. There is good character development and relationship development that has a definite Christian focus.
2. Every sentence is important, and adds to the novel. I’m not kidding, every sentence adds something
that builds on the stories.
3. The romance between Megan and Reverend Jeb is so subtle and pure, that you can relax and know
Mrs. Schmidt has no intentions of taking the cheap and easy way out, so to speak, by writing paragraphs
of tripe and fluff that insults the Christian reader.
4. The problems are resolved in a logical, real-life way, the reader can easily believe the solutions are
credible and could happen in real life.

Allow me to digress just a bit here.
So MANY contemporary Christian romance novels, and even modern Christian historical fiction books are pure junk, not worthy of the name of Christian, and not worth your time to read them. Anna Schmidt’s book
is so much above almost all of the Christian fiction available today that you’d be doing yourself a huge favor
by reading it. Satisfying, original, believable, and refreshingly intelligent writing is what this book is all about. This book should have won a RITA award.

The main characters are Megan and Jeb. Megan was an unwed teen mother years ago, and has worked hard to give a good life to her daughter, Faith, and she has, with the help of Reba, the owner of an Inn, and Reba’s husband, now deceased. Jeb is a widower, a former manager of a global company, who became a
pastor after his wife’s death. They all live in a small town, where gossip is rampant, and the pecking order is rarely changed. They slowly begin a relationship with Jeb and Megan as friends, and they become close as events in the community give them new perspectives.

Anna Schmidt is a three-time finalist for the coveted RITA award presented annually by Romance Writers of America (RWA). Her novel A SISTER’S FORGIVENESS gave Anna her fourth finalist honor for the Reviewers’ Choice Awards from Romantic Times magazine. She has won that award twice before. In 2013 she was given the Lifetime Achievement Award by her local Wisconsin chapter of RWA.

Anna Schmidt:  CHECK OUT:
* Anna’s website at www.annaschmidtauthor.com

Bead Crafts Do It Yourself

I’ve been making bracelets with beads, and using a neat tool called the Wrap It Loom:

My daughter loves the bracelets, and I’m learning something fun and useful.  To make a bracelet, I use 1mm leather cord, and 8 mm beads, round and smooth.  I also use Nymo thread, and big-eye needles to make the whole thing run smoothly.  For the macrame bracelets, I used 1mm waxed linen thread or cord, and some beads I got off of a thrift store necklace, or I used 6/0 seed beads, toho brand, and decorative buttons from Beadaholique.  There are several places online to buy supplies, so happy hunting!!

Some bracelets I’ve made: 

If you want to make some for yourself, here’s a good tutorial: