The Valley of Tranquility by Jack L. Parker follows the main character Mike Stratton as he remembers his times going on grand adventures with his best friends Reddy and Scott many years before. Mike recalls many nights that he would never forget, starting with the time he and his friends camped in this beautiful valley and the night he and his friends camped on a dead end on Calaveras River where he and his friends experienced a flash flood and luckily managed to escape with their lives. After he finishes taking a trip down memory lane he decides that he wants to visit the town where all of his best memories had happened and look into relocating there.
The Valley of Tranquility is a stirring Christian fiction story following a man who is reminiscing about his life through an sentimental romp down memory lane while also following him through his new life as he makes new friends and discovers new things about himself and those around him.
The book starts slow, methodically developing and delivering heartfelt moments and touching scenes that are emotionally resonant and immanently authentic. The pace of the book is perfect for readers looking for a light read and suits the tone of the story as it gives us plenty of time to understand who Mike is as a person. I found the book to be inviting and sincere overall. The book explores true friendship and the ability to reconnect with oneself via the past. This is a character driven story, really an exploration of character, but I enjoyed all the well rounded characters in this story as I found them relatable and endearing.
The Valley of Tranquility is an uplifting book that I would recommend to readers who enjoy slow but thoughtful books with an eloquent view on the simple things in life such as friendship and getting proper footing on one’s own life.
Pages: 200 | ASIN: B094SWLDBP
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Hope in Liverpool is a stirring historical romance novel following a dejected young woman who finds renewed hope in a handsome stranger that provides the prospect of a better life. But that life has its own set of obstacles.
Hope Bennett is an intriguing character and could be described as a woman with a gentle soul and a heart of gold, but don’t let that fool you because once you hit a nerve she can be as feisty as ever. This dynamic character is really brought to life by T N Traynor’s sharp writing.
This emotionally charged love story showcases the hardships that women go through on a daily basis, yet somehow they are able to soldier on and continue being the anchors in their home while also being their own pillars of strengths. Traynor takes this novella beyond your typical romantic love story and makes it a book that shows the strength of a woman while adding a twist of romance. The story is a deep but subtle exploration of dysfunctional families and through this it shows the true value of forgiveness.
As a young woman myself I was able to empathize with, if not relate to, Hope as she felt authentic and the writing really places the reader in her shoes. This is a melodramatic love story, but it’s melodrama done right. It brings all the emotions of family drama and love to the forefront and probes them throughout the story in various ways that ensures the reader is always entertained. Although this is a love story it still displays the imperfections of people and choices.
When I read through the prologue I thought this was going to be a stuffy historical fiction novel, but stick with it because after chapter one I was fully engaged with the story.
Hope in Liverpool is a stimulating historical romance novel with a well-conceived and thoughtful protagonist that was a delight to follow. This a compelling romance novel that will appeal to anyone looking for a quick but riveting love story.
Pages: 210 | ASIN: B091B8LYNP
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Seventy Times Seven, by Doralyn Moore, is the story of a young woman who leaves an abusive situation and learns the power of forgiveness. Merisela lives in Mexico with her brother, mother, and stepfather. After an encounter with her stepfather, Merisela leaves Mexico and travels to Canada, where she hopes her aunt still lives. Leaving her home is only the first step in Merisela’s journey.
The main character flees her home in Mexico, after she believes her stepfather’s sexual abuse is worsening. Merisela arrives in Canada on her aunt’s doorstep seeking help. She encounters many obstacles while figuring out how to make a life for herself. Throughout the book the point of view switches to some other minor characters, which helps to develop various character backgrounds, while still intertwining them with Merisela’s story. Merisela meets Michael and a blossoming relationship is formed that kept me engrossed in the story. Michael helps Merisela find her faith and forgiveness, which helps her obtain closure in dealing with her past.
Author Doralyn Moore discusses mature topics throughout the book, but the underlying themes woven in the pages is faith and forgiveness. Though Merisela has had many trials, she learns to accept that God has a plan and no matter how many times you have been hurt you must learn to forgive. This is an emotional story with engaging characters that really drive these points home in authentic and relatable ways.
The writing style throughout the book is light, and Moore changes the tone so that each character’s point of view is in their own voice. Although the chapters sometimes switch in the point of view, the story is told in full and the variety of voices bring great emotional depth to this contemporary romance novel and colors Merisela’s story.
The characters and voices were written so beautifully. Moore created a novel bursting with relatable characters and prudent life lessons. This book contains mature content, but it is delivered in a thoughtful way that sheds light on the dark topics while still making it easy to process. Seventy Times Seven is a poignant romance novel that will appeal to anyone looking for an emotional Christian fiction story.
Pages: 306 | ISBN: 152558409X
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Ever since Europeans discovered and came to conquer and colonize the Americas, a great question occupied European Christians. Did Jesus Christ, or his immediate successors the Apostles and the first Christians who followed, cross the great Atlantic or Pacific Oceans and proselytize among the indigenous peoples of the New World? Read the story of what may have happened. Using his knowledge of the age of the Conquest, the author begins with a shipwreck and an artifact and weaves the story of the Andean cross, a piece of Christian culture that is both American and European. This faced-paced story spanning Europe, North America, and Latin America will electrify you with its implications on the great age of the Encounter and the secrets and mysteries of Christianity that still fascinate so many.
Posted in book trailer
Tags: adventure, author, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, book trailer, bookblogger, books, books to read, booktube, booktuber, christian fiction, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, historical fiction, kindle, kobo, Lawrence Clayton, literature, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, story, the andean cross, trailer, writer, writing
Mistre is one of those characters you can’t stop thinking about. She is living a life of the most challenging kind. She is a mother, but she is unable to be present for her children. Despite the choices she has made and the mistakes that have shaped her, Mistre manages to live her life for others. Her sights are set on helping those who cannot help themselves. Now, however, Mistre is on the run, and her life will never be the same–as her life changes, so do those of her children. If it is possible for a woman to triumph over what appears to be the depths of despair, Mistre is the woman to do it.
The Journey of Life, by Teklemariam Birbirsa, details all the turbulence and trauma of Mistre’s life. Beginning with an unplanned pregnancy that could be the beginning of the end for her, Mistre relies on her friends’ kind hearts and guidance. She has a purpose in life, and nothing will stop her–even some of the most devastating roadblocks a person can endure.
Birbirsa does a wonderful job of incorporating truths into this work of historical fiction. The timing and the settings truly bring the characters and their challenges to life. From governmental overreach to the Red Terror of Ethiopia, the author covers some truly heinous subject matter. Readers who look for bits of historical accuracy in their dramas will appreciate the efforts to which Birbirsa has gone to add details to Mistre’s story.
Time seems to pass quickly for the characters. I could feel myself zooming through Mistre’s life and found myself wondering, at some points, who was talking. Mistre’s life is full, offers many more chances for side stories, and could stand to be drawn out into even more detailed chapters. Overall, the book seemed short, and I was begging for more by the end.
The Journey of Life, by Teklemariam Birbirsa is a riveting and emotionally charged novel. Mistre is a truly involved character with many chances for a more well-developed storyline. There is an underlying current of fear surrounding the main characters that deserves even more exploration. I look forward to seeing more from Birbirsa in the future and would love to see an offshoot of Mistre’s life exploring the lives of her children.
Pages: 148 | ASIN: B08ZJRBPXG
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Phoenix: Field of Mars (The Phoenix Trilogy Book One) by Jackie Anders is a thrilling time travel romance story. Kyla Marshall, a Public Relations Assistant Director, travels to Israel on a PR assignment for her company’s client, West Bank Labs in Jerusalem. But the space exploration company has discovered something that they do not share with Kyla. While working late one night, she stumbles into a special ops mission to stop a rogue scientist from trying to change the past to cause a domino effect in the present. Kyla finds herself in Rome in 8 AD with a group of modern soldiers, led by Captain Christopher Eriksen. Will the team succeed in their mission? And will Kyla ever be able to return to her own time?
The premise of this gripping story piqued my interest right from the beginning. I enjoyed reading about the time period of Jerusalem in the first century and the ancient Roman Empire. It was interesting to get a glimpse into the day-to-day life of a prominent Roman citizen when Kyla remained with their hosts while Captain Eriksen and his team traveled with the Roman senator. I liked how the different team members of the Special ops unit were all from different countries, and the way they worked together on the mission. Each character felt unique and authentic and always added something different to the situation and dialogue
The ending leaves you desperate for more. There were some unanswered questions, making the follow-up story a must-read. I am definitely looking forward to Phoenix: By the Sword, to find out what happens next in the characters’ journey.
While I enjoyed this adventurous story, I felt that the novel leaned more towards the science fiction adventure genre, rather than the historical fiction genre, which ensures the story is consistently entertaining, but I would have liked more historical accuracy. Time travel come with all sorts of paradoxes, but the author leans into the narrative and keeps focus on the mission and the task at hand rather than the ripple effect the teams presence could cause, but I felt that some mention of it would have appeased the hard core science fiction fans.
Phoenix: Field of Mars is a lively time travel story that will keep readers entertained with its compelling characters and dramatic turn of events in every chapter.
Pages: 211 | ASIN: B07M8CYZJ3
If you are looking for a book about family, faith, and healing, T.P Graf’s Night Air Descending is right up your alley. It follows the life of Jaime Cruz, a young man who managed to find love and healing in a Texas family. Together with his partner Billy, and his adopted family Bill, Betsy, and Sallie, he forges a new existence, one of joy and peace. This is quite contrary to the life he had growing up – one of pain and loneliness. He sends out letters to members of his estranged family, hoping to reunite and guide them to healing as well. While only one family member bites, this is enough to inspire hope in Jamie and his chosen family.
Throughout this intelligent and evocative book we learn about Jamie’s view on love and the beautiful relationship he has with his adopted family. The themes of family, belonging, and love reverberate throughout the narrative. Using the perspective of Jamie to tell the story, the author draws us in and makes it more relatable and memorable. It also helps that most of the events in the book are everyday occurrences that the average person can relate to.
Moreover, the characters are well developed, each having his or her own personality and desires – some surprising and some not so much. The author’s writing style is light and easy to read – there isn’t any use of wordy long-winded paragraphs. This writing style is reflective of the story, in its ability to find beauty in everyday simplicity.
I enjoyed the story, and the dialogue, but because there was so much dialogue I felt that there were phrases that were repeated often: “I said”, “He said”, and “She said”. I would have enjoyed more descriptions of scenes and character state of minds from a narrative point of view to break things up and give the dialogue some direction.
This is a beautifully written book that has a grounded and authentic feel so much that it feels like we are reading someone diary; one filled with the daily hassles, family and ranch life. However, if you are looking for something easy to read and that seamlessly blends Christian faith, love, and family, Night Air Descending could be the book for you. This is a heartwarming book that possesses author T.P. Graf’s distinct literary aesthetic.
Pages: 222 | ASIN: B08R7PZ2FG
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A Change of Scenery follows a woman trying to reclaim her life by moving and finds a cowboy’s who challenges her in more ways than one. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?
A Change of Scenery is Book 4 in The Canon City Chronicles series, and deals with the lives of twin little boys, Cale and Hugh Hutton, from Book 3, Romancing the Widow. In continuing the family saga, time passes until the boys are old enough to tell their story, which takes us to the silent-picture days of filming Westerns in Canon City, Colorado. Canon City was an early “Hollywood” before Hollywood, with actors such as Tom Mix filming many pictures here. Local ranchers and cowboys were often used as extras in the films.
Ella is an intriguing and well-developed character. What were some driving ideals behind her character development?
Ella Canaday feels robbed of the two most important things in her life, but she refuses to remain in her prominent father’s home as an invalid. She sets out to make her own life, yet with no hopes of regaining her losses. However, when faced with the “impossible,” she does not shrink away from the risks and rises to the task — with common-sense encouragement from a local rancher, Cale Hutton.
What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?
Important themes for this book are second changes, forgiveness, and courage.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
I am working on Book 5 in the series featuring Cale’s widowed brother Hugh. However, on June 1 Barbour Publishing is releasing a contemporary romance collection titled Always A Wedding Planner. My novella in the collection is “Taste and See.” And of course, my hero is a cowboy.
Posted in Interviews
Tags: A Change of Scenery, author, author interview, book, book recommendations, book review, book reviews, book shelf, bookblogger, books, books to read, christian, christian fiction, christian romance, Davalynn Spencer, ebook, fantasy, fiction, goodreads, kindle, kobo, literature, love story, nook, novel, read, reader, reading, romance, story, western, writer, writing