Friday, June 17, 2016

Review: Cats in Paris Adult Coloring Book

This is an adult coloring book with beautiful Paris scenes, and many cats. 
The pages are heavy paper, and I have not had any trouble with bleed-through. The pages are two-sided and non-perforated so you cannot remove the scenes. The dust cover is removable and has it's own places for coloring.
While this book was beautifully drawn by a talented artist I found that some of the pages, especially the Paris scenes, were already so detailed that it was best left as ink art. Too much detail actually detracts from coloring. Another issue that I had was the lack of space to add your own art. It seems like often every inch of the paper is taken, so you can color but not create.
With the title "Cats in Paris" I was expecting a book of Paris scenes with cats in them, but the opposite is true. It's a book of cats with some Paris scenes in it. This is not necessarily a problem, but something to be aware of. This is a book for cat lovers, not for Paris lovers. I am not a cat-lover, and found that I lost interest in coloring page after page of cats.
Overall, this is a okay adult coloring book with a few drawbacks.

I must mention that I received a complimentary copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Review: Luther and Katharina by Jody Hedlund

Book Description:
In the 16th century, nun Katharina von Bora’s fate fell no further than the Abbey. Until she read the writings of Martin Luther.
His sweeping Catholic church reformation—condemning a cloistered life and promoting the goodness of marriage—awakened her desire for everything she’d been forbidden. Including Martin Luther himself. 
Despite the fact that the attraction and tension between them is undeniable, Luther holds fast to his convictions and remains isolated, refusing to risk anyone’s life but his own. And Katharina longs for love, but is strong-willed. She clings proudly to her class distinction, pining for nobility over the heart of a reformer. They couldn’t be more different. 
But as the world comes tumbling down around them, and with Luther’s threatened life a constant strain, these unlikely allies forge an unexpected bond of understanding, support and love. 
Together, they will alter the religious landscape forever.

My Review:
I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

While this is a mingling of history, fiction, and theology it was done in an incredibly accurate yet easy to read manner.
For those who are students of church history and are familiar with the reformation as well as the person and work of Luther, I believe you will find this to be a fair treatment of his life and work. His well-known personality comes through well, and you can just see the softening of the often-gruff Luther as his relationship with Katharina unfolds.
Of course, it is fiction and a delightful but realistic love story. This just makes it all the better. 
The vivid descriptions of the people and events, both historical and fictitious, give the reader a glimpse into issues surrounding the reformation and some of what happened to those who were involved in it.
Overall, I loved this book. This was the perfect blending of history and fiction.

*I received a complimentary review copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.

Room for Hope Review and Giveaway

Rarely does a book come my way that lingers with me long after the last page has been read. Those books are a rare gift. This is one of those books.

Neva Shilling faithfully tends to the family store and cares for the twins Bud and Belle as her husband takes month-long trips to sell products in other communities. Though disappointed that she had not provided her husband with the large family they had both desired, Neva is a faithful wife and mother who is warm and caring to all.

With the sound of a wagon pulling up to the shop, her life forever changes. Neva receives word that her husband and his other wife  have died. And, he has sent his three  other children to live with "Aunt Neva." Shocked and heartbroken over the revelation of double life that her beloved has lived, Neva is faced with life-changing decisions. Will she keep the mercantile or sell to Arthur, the owner of the Emporium who has long coveted the shop? Will she keep the children or send them to an orphanage? What will she tell the town?

This book was brilliantly written with an engaging plot, a thread of mystery that runs throughout, and a depth of character that is rare to find in a book today.

There is a strong theme of faith, forgiveness, and the return of prodigals in this book. It is a blessing to see how Neva's faith is strengthened through her trials and how her compassionate heart and depth of love only grows deeper through adversity.

This book gripped my heart from the very first page, and is a story that I am not likely to forget.

Interested in reading this? You can download the first chapter here:

I also have two copies of this book to giveaway, courtesy of Waterbrook Multnomah. Just leave a comment below to enter. Winners will be announced March 1, 2015.

*Thank you to Waterbrook Multnomah, who provided me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Giveaway winners (both from Facebook entries) are Janelle and Kristine!
Thank you to all who entered.