Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Journey's Ending... with hope and reconciliation. A Review...

When the Soul Mends - Sisters of the Quilt, Book 3... by Cindy Woodsmall, as reviewed by Tami.

A book full of re-connections and rediscovery. Hannah Lapp has gone through a long journey in 2 other books to get to the point she is in book 3. From a tragic rape, rejection and fleeing to the unknown... to the strong confident nursing student we meet in "When the Soul Mends". I had not read the other 2 books of this series (and seem to be getting the end of alot of stories with my review books) but was able to get the idea of the story by reading this book, I do think that the book would have had more impact and made more sense if I had read the other 2 books.

A well written story of hope about Hannah Lapp as she journeys home to help her sister - and reconnects with family, friends and an order and pace of life that is a part of who she is. Being pulled between helping her sister and attending school and being engaged to an 'Englisher' with whom she is helping raise 2 children. The 2 worlds and pace of life are highlighted and compared neatly in this book... without blame or making the other better. And served to show how Hannah was part of both... yet like all of us a time of choosing comes around.

I really enjoyed Hannah's growth to discover that it's okay to want the things that bring joy to your soul. To listen to ones inner voice is what brings peace in the long term. 

Ms Woodsmall did a great job bringing the characters to life and making all the situations believable. I loved the reconciliation theme and the longing to have that peace in ones soul that passes all understanding.

I am sure this is a great series... enjoy it~

3 of 5 stars.

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. The words and thoughts used to describe the book are strictly my own.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Ball of a Story!

The Lightkeeper's Ball is the third installment for the Lightkeeper's trilogy (or The Mercy Falls Series). Ms Coble did a lovely job in making this a fine stand alone read. Having not read the other 2 previous books in the series, I was able to read and understand all that was going on without missing any vital information.

This story is an excellent mystery and romance rolled into one. With just the right amount of Christianity showing through, it warms the soul and dispels doubt with hope and freedom.

Our main character in this book is Olivia Stewart, who is being forced to marry a man she does not know - her sister's fiancé. With the death of her sister a mystery, Olivia sets out to find out more about the death of her sister and the man that she is going to be engaged to. Leaving the security of the New York social set for the relative wilderness of California - in the age of innovation and invention... The book weaves the tale of determination and courage when everything seems to be against you.

With the lighthouse destroyed by a sever storm, Olivia plans an elaborate ball to raise the funds to rebuild the needed lighthouse. So the story gets it's title.

This book highlights the trait of honor... And shows how worthy it can be for a person. And hints to the fact that God is a personal God who sees all, knows all and is involved in even the small things of your life. Which is the journey our main character takes.

One thing I would have liked to see in the book, but was not, was the small church mentioned in the book by some of the characters. Perhaps that is explored more in the other 2 books. The main character, Olivia, mentions that her church is a social event... Who's who, and who wore what... While in Mercy Falls the church is a different more real experience.

Unlike some other books I have read, I do not feel compelled to read the other books in the series. It would be nice... But I do not NEED to.

Our second main character is Harrison Bennett, who shows us the meaning of finding a balance between passion and gifts from God. We are all given these for reasons... If we use them to better others then they are a blessing, and will grow. This was a nice twist and a touch that was not needed but surely made one consider gifts and purpose.

A short, comfortable read, this book offers. But to the casual reader who is in search of a quick diversion from life's busy pace. With a murder/suicide to solve, an attraction to deal with and friends to support and guide - makes this book fun and a delight.