Fiction Review: Columbkill Noonan’s “Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Nine Worlds”

….in which a Victorian detective goes around yelling at Asgardians.

As much as that quick elevator pitch makes me smile, it doesn’t do this book justice. While this is a fun, jaunty read, the reader is immersed in a depth of setting and plot that proves the author has definitely done her research. Think of it like a fine painting or great photograph. While the focus is on the subject in the foreground, without the fullness of the background scene, it would just be a flat, one dimensional moment. Authors will do reams of research, and it is tempting to dump all of that on top of one’s plot in the excitement of writing – “Barnabas Tew and the Case of the Nine Worlds” is a great example of how to highlight your story with the best bits, enhancing overall.

The story was fun to puzzle out, and there were many moments that made me laugh aloud, or stop and re-read a particularly witty moment to whomever was near, to share the fun. I enjoyed getting to know Barnabas and Wilfred, and look forward to going back and reading their first adventure, and will eagerly await all those to come!

This post is a stop on the promotional blog tour hosted by

There is a rafflecopter giveaway as well, which you can enter here.

I received a review copy of this work from the author.

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Non-Fiction Review: James Adams’ “War Psalms of the Prince of Peace: Lessons from the Imprecatory Psalms”

War Psalms of the Prince of Peace: Lessons from the Imprecatory Psalms

I read and re-read the “blurb” about this book several times before getting it. The description enticed me, made me curious, and also a little unsure of delving into such a weighty book.

Would I understand it? Would I be able to pass it on to others?

Yes, whole-heartedly, to both. 

I am so very glad I got to read “War Psalms.” The edition I read is the ‘expanded and revised’ 25th anniversary copy. Dr. Adams’s writing is engaging, accessible, and completely on point. The truths he illuminates were well supported, as he meticulously built each facet of his lessons. Studying the Psalms can always be a little tricky, but “War Psalms” does a great job of tying the book of Psalms to the rest of the Bible and allowing us to see new threads in the weave of the master Story throughout.

This book would be incredible to go through with a Bible study group. It is powerful, and would shake up any church group who chose to read it – a stirring call to action. I highly recommend!

I received a review copy of this work from the publisher through NetGalley

 

Non-Fiction Review: Charles Swindoll’s “Searching the Scriptures”

Searching the Scriptures: Find the Nourishment Your Soul Needs

I grew up listening to Pastor Swindoll’s messages on Insight for Living, and then had the pleasure of attending Stonebriar Church for several months, hearing his sermons in person. All of his messages are bed-rock solid, and have impacted me throughout my life. In “Searching the Scriptures” Pastor Swindoll lays out his method for crafting those messages, and how to apply that to our own Bible Study.

He correlates the process of planning, preparing, and cooking a meal to the steps of Bible study. I enjoyed this allegory, as it was easy to follow and put into practice. There are certain starting foundations and patterns to follow to get the most out of what you’re consuming – whether the food be physical, or spiritual.

You will need to allow time and mental space to work through this book – there’s a lot to absorb in each chapter, and they just build upon themselves. The study questions help to facilitate that well. The author’s writing style is very conversational, which also helps the reader in understanding what is being said.

In all it was a very enjoyable, and quite instructive, read. I greatly recommend!

I received a review copy of this work from the publisher through NetGalley

2018 – Second Quarter Roundup

I’ve already surpassed my reading goal for the year, and am still steaming ahead! Over the past 3 months I caught up on, or completed, several different series, in addition to other works.
I’ve enjoyed these, and I hope you will too! 

The Chronicles of St. Mary’s Series
SymphonyEchoes WhenChildBorn SecondChance RomanHoliday TrailTime NoTimeLikePast

The Last Dragonslayer Series
LastDragonslayer Quarkbeast EyeZoltar

Nursery Crime Series
BigOverEasy FourthBear LockedRoomMystery

Shades of Grey Series
ShadesGrey

Stoker and Holmes Series
ClockworkScarab Spiritglass ChessQueen

The Grisha Trilogy
ShadowBone SiegeStorm RuinRising

Slated Trilogy
Slated Fractured Shattered

Mandie Series
MandieOne MandieTwo

Talon Series
Talon Rogue

DC Icons Series
WWWarbringer.jpg BMNightwalker

Eli Marks Mystery Series
InvisAssistant

Ruined Series
Ruined

The Others Series
LakeSilence

The Invisible Library Series
LostPlot

Ivy Malone Mysteries
GoIvyGo

Dahlia Moss Mysteries
QuestionableDahliaMoss.jpg

Otherselves Trilogy
AmidWindStone

Eric Beckman Series
YesterdaysThief

Skip Trilogy
Skip

Stand Alone Works:
Harbinger.jpg

MaidFairbourne

What are you currently reading? Comment below!

2018 – First Quarter Roundup

Hello everyone!

3 months into 2018, and I’ve already read quite a number of books, including several for traditional review. I’ve enjoyed these, and I hope you will too! 

I read through the entire “Doon” series by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon – a fun take on an old tale.
Doon Destined for Doon Shades of Doon Forever DoonFind them on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

I reread a book I reviewed last year in anticipation of reading the next few in the series – I love the writing style and amazing plot in these works!
 King's Blood (The Kinsman Chronicles, #2) The Reluctant King (The Kinsman Chronicles #3a)
Find them on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

I read the sequel to a book I read last year – quite the mind-bender!

Find on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

I started a new series by Jodi Taylor – an absolute hoot so far!
The Very First Damned Thing (A Chronicles of St. Mary's Short Story) by [Taylor, Jodi] 
Find on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

I started a new Le French Book series! Check out my review here.

Find it on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

I read both books in the “Girl From Everywhere”  duology  – absolutely fantastic.
The Girl from Everywhere by [Heilig, Heidi] The Ship Beyond Time (The Girl From Everywhere, #2)
Find them on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

Finally, I made my way through several books recommended to me:


Find on Amazon or Barnes and Noble


Find on Amazon or Barnes and Noble


Find on Amazon or Barnes and Noble


Find on Amazon or Barnes and Noble

I’m always eager to find new works and share them.
What have you been reading so far in 2018? Leave a comment below!

Fiction Review: Le French Book – “Minced, Marinated, and Murdered”

 

 

The French love their food – nay, they delight in it. There is so much tradition, history, and depth to be explored and enjoyed, why wouldn’t they?

“Minced, Marinated, and Murdered” is set in Lyon, a premier culinary destination for anyone travelling the region. I loved how as Laure and Paco tour the area’s chefs for her article, the reader gets to enjoy the history of the town and its people, as well as the food.

And oh, the food. The authors take the time to sit at the table with their characters and savor each course the server brings. The reader can smell, hear, and see the nuances of each dish through their expert descriptions. The respect and love for this region and its culinarians is infused throughout every chapter.

This book, the first in the new Gourmet Crimes series, reminded me what I love so much about French writing, and particularly, Le French Book translations. The style and focus of French authors is so different from my own experience, but that’s what makes these works such fun to read. I’m hearing your own tales, about your own hometowns, in your own words. That, plus a well crafted story with misdirects and layers to unfold comes together into a work I must recommend!

Today, February 20 is the launch of the book! If you order today, you get some amazing bonus content from the authors and publisher! Click here to learn more.

I received a review copy of this work from the publisher

 

Fiction Review: Hamilton Crane’s “Miss Seeton Quilts the Village”

As of September 7th, a brand-new Miss Seeton story is available! 

This book is jam-packed. Numerous plot-lines dance about each other, weaving a story that takes a couple of readings to fully unravel. And in true “Battling Brolly” fashion, Miss Seeton is somehow entangled in each goings-on, and yet remains blissfully unaware the whole time.

Miss Seeton is nobody’s fool, so it has always amused me greatly how her incessantly polite look on life can make so many people misunderstand her, or how she can be so unaware, yet her subconscious-led art can turn out so many vital clues. The authors who have crafted the series over the years have done a wonderful job of keeping this unique quirk alive and fresh for the readers. 

This new title is two decades removed from the previous book in the series, and yet we pick up right where we left off with all the people of the town, and they are just as fun to read as ever. I’ve always liked how, even though it’s the “Miss Seeton” series, the author(s) give us POV from all characters therein. Getting a perspective outside of Miss Seeton’s rounds out each story, and allows us to enjoy her antics even more. 

I liked how the plot dealt with several layers of history – how different events can be interpreted, and how one family, or one village can impact those around them in ways unexpected. You can’t rush ahead while reading this one, there’s a lot to process!

I hope this publication is indicative of more to come!

I received a review copy of this work from the publisher through NetGalley