A Historical Fiction Set in Pre-Reformation England – The Silent Songbird {Review}

Posted January 30, 2017 in Faith, Reading, Review / 0 Comments

A Historical Fiction Set in Pre-Reformation England – The Silent Songbird {Review}The Silent Songbird by Melanie Dickerson
Series: Hagenheim #7
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (2016)
eARC (296 pages)
Via: NetGalley
Rating:
Reading Challenges: 2016 Royal Challenge, Read 2016

Synopsis

Evangeline longs to be free, to live in the world outside the castle walls. But freedom comes at a cost.
Evangeline is the ward and cousin of King Richard II, and yet she dreams of a life outside of Berkhamsted Castle, where she might be free to marry for love and not politics. But the young king betroths her to his closest advisor, Lord Shiveley, a man twice as old as Evangeline. Desperate to escape a life married to a man she finds revolting, Evangeline runs away from the king and joins a small band of servants on their way back to their home village.
To keep her identity a secret, Evangeline pretends to be mute. Evangeline soon regrets the charade as she gets to know Wesley, the handsome young leader of the servants, whom she later discovers is the son of a wealthy lord. But she cannot reveal her true identity for fear she will be forced to return to King Richard and her arranged marriage.
Wesley le Wyse is intrigued by the beautiful new servant girl. When he learns that she lost her voice from a beating by a cruel former master, he is outraged. But his anger is soon redirected when he learns she has been lying to him. Not only is she not mute, but she isn't even a servant.
Weighed down by remorse for deceiving Wesley, Evangeline fears no one will ever love her. But her future is not the only thing at stake, as she finds herself embroiled in a tangled web that threatens England's monarchy. Should she give herself up to save the only person who cares about her? If she does, who will save the king from a plot to steal his throne?

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A Biblical Journey Through the Lord’s Passion and Resurrection – Walk in Her Sandals {Review}

Posted January 29, 2017 in Faith, Reading, Review / 0 Comments

A Biblical Journey Through the Lord’s Passion and Resurrection – Walk in Her Sandals {Review}Walk in Her Sandals by Kelly Wahlquist
Publisher: Ave Maria Press (2016)
eARC (160 pages)
Via: NetGalley
Rating:
Reading Challenges: Read 2016

Synopsis

Pray in a new and creative way this Lent by joining the women of WINE: Women In the New Evangelization on a journey through Christ's passion, death, and resurrection. What if you could have been a witness to the events of the last days of Jesus life walking with him as he entered Jerusalem, observing his crucifixion, and embracing him on Easter?
Walk in Her Sandals, edited by popular Catholic author and speaker Kelly M. Wahlquist, takes you deeper into your relationship with Jesus by helping you relate to him in a profoundly intimate way. Looking at six universal gifts of women through the eyes of women in the gospels, the book guides you on a prayerful and creative journey through the days of Holy Week, Easter, and Pentecost.
As you imagine the experience of the women who met Jesus, you will discover how each of them expressed one of six, distinctive, feminine gifts identified in the writings of St. John Paul II. Through the eyes of an imagined woman who watched Jesus entry into Jerusalem, you will understand how she conveyed the gift of receptivity. Through the hands of Veronica, who reached out to wipe the face of Jesus, you will discover how sensitivity is present and can grow in your own life. These gifts, along with generosity, prayer, maternity, and the Holy Spirit, come to life through the vivid portrayal of women who walked with Jesus. Their imagined stories are complemented by the real accounts of contemporary women who share their own stories of receiving and cultivating these gifts.
Walk in Her Sandalsis a collaborative effort, edited by Wahlquist with contributions from twelve leading Catholic women writers, all of whom are associated with the organization she founded WINE: Women In the New Evangelization. The contributors will help you break open the scripture, reflect upon it and apply it to your own life, and share those insights in a small-group setting through the use of questions and challenges. Each chapter unfolds in eight movements:
A Moment to Ponder Wahlquist sets the stage for the theme of that chapter.
Entering the Scripture Sarah Christmyer, codeveloper of The Great Adventure Catholic Bible Study, reveals the riches of the scripture that corresponds with the day, both in the biblical narrative and in the liturgical year.
Walk in Her Sandals Stephanie Landsem, author of the biblical fiction series The Living Water, draws you into the story and allows you to experience what it may have been like for women who lived and walked with Jesus.
Unwrapping the Gift Catholic author, speaker, and faith-formation leader Pat Gohn shows how each woman demonstrates a particular feminine gift and invites you to nurture that gift in yourself and understand anew the beauty of your dignity and vocation.
Reflect on the Meaning Writers including CatholicMom.com founder Lisa M. Hendey and popular media personality Teresa Tomeo offer insight, encouragement, and inspiration for your own journey through their personal stories.
Lectio and Meditatio A prayerful reading of the scripture and a guided meditation to draw you more deeply into an intimate relationship with Jesus.
Questions for Group Discussion Carol Younger, senior fellow at the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology, offers a helpful tool to share your experience with other women.
Walking in the New Evangelization Wahlquist offers two ways to contribute to the New Evangelization first by growing in your contemplative spiritual life and then by giving you practical suggestions to enhance your active spiritual life.
Walk in Her Sandals will allow you to enter more fully into life in Christ by praying over his passion, death, and resurrection. It will help you experience a conversion of heart and recognize your own giftedness.

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Every Decision Creates Infinite Realities – The Infinity of You and Me {Review}

Posted January 28, 2017 in Reading, Review / 0 Comments

Every Decision Creates Infinite Realities – The Infinity of You and Me {Review}The Infinity of You & Me by J Q Coyle
Publisher: St Martin's Griffin (2016)
Hardcover (256 pages)
Via: Publisher
Rating:
Reading Challenges: Read 2016

Synopsis

What if every life-altering choice you made could split your world into infinite worlds?
Almost fifteen, Alicia is smart and funny with a deep connection to the poet Sylvia Plath, but she’s ultimately failing at life. With a laundry list of diagnoses, she hallucinates different worlds—strange, decaying, otherworldly yet undeniably real worlds that are completely unlike her own with her single mom and one true friend. In one particularly vivid hallucination, Alicia is drawn to a boy her own age named Jax who’s trapped in a dying universe. Days later, her long-lost father shows up at her birthday party, telling her that the hallucinations aren’t hallucinations, but real worlds; she and Jax are bound by a strange past and intertwining present. This leads her on a journey to find out who she is while trying to save the people and worlds she loves. J.Q. Coyle’s The Infinity of You & Me is a wild ride through unruly hearts and vivid worlds guaranteed to captivate.

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An 80s Epistolary Contemporary – We Are Still Tornadoes {Review}

Posted January 27, 2017 in Reading, Review / 0 Comments

An 80s Epistolary Contemporary – We Are Still Tornadoes {Review}We Are Still Tornadoes by Michael Kun, Susan Mullen
Publisher: St Martin's Griffin (2016)
eARC (304 pages)
Via: NetGalley
Rating:
Reading Challenges: Read 2016

Synopsis

It’s the summer of 1982, and for Scott and Cath, everything is about to change.
Growing up across the street from each other, Scott and Cath have been best friends for most of their lives. Now they’ve graduated high school, and Cath is off to college while Scott stays at home trying to get his band off the ground. Neither of them realized that their first year after high school would be so hard.
Fortunately, Scott and Cath still have each other, and it’s through their letters that they survive heartache, annoying roommates, family dramas, and the pressure of figuring out what to do with the rest of their lives. And through it all, they realize that the only person they’ve ever wanted to turn to is each other. But does that mean they should think about being more than friends? One thing is clear: Change is an inescapable part of growing up, and we share unbreakable bonds with the friends who help us navigate it.

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So, I’ve Been Really Sick

Posted January 16, 2017 in Life / 0 Comments

I am sorry that this blog has kind of fallen by the wayside lately.

The end of November and beginning of December were the end of the grad school semester and I had a lot of final projects due.

Then I got glutened and ended up traveling for the holidays where I got glutened again. My maternal grandmother is not doing well at all and we had to drive halfway across the country to visit her. Her death is rather imminent and she is in hospice right now.

After returning home at the very end of December, I managed to catch influenza and bronchitis thanks to my wonderful celiac disease. I have literally been sleeping 20+ hours a day for the past two weeks.

I have been trying to get an end-of-the-year wrap-up done, but now I’m not sure that is going to happen. I am way behind on reviews, but I promise they are coming.

Please, bear with me, people, and I will get things back on track soon.

amanda

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