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Double Shot by Erynn Mangum

Maya Davis’ life is about to get very, very messy. Her best friend just got married; she has four months to plan her own wedding; her brother’s wife just gave birth prematurely, leaving her nephew in the NICU; she was just promoted to manager of Cool Bean coffee shop; and the icing on the top of her beautiful wedding cake is that her fiancee was just offered a chance at a promotion, only his promotion involves a move to Seattle. This wouldn’t be so bad if it didn’t mean moving 10 hours away from everything and everyone she knows and loves.

With this melting pot of emotions and events, Maya cannot seem to decipher what God’s wants her to do. Why would He want her to move so far away? How does she balance her own wants and desires, while at the same time honoring the wishes of her soon-to-be husband? What does she decide?

This third installment of the life of Maya Davis by Erynn Mangum is a beautifully crafted story that leaves the reader intrigued and captivated. She creates emotions within the story that are so familiar to my own in certain situations that I cannot help but relate to her. Needless to say, it’s a must read. So go on and buy it!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NavPress Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

A Rush of Wings by Kristen Heitzmann

Noelle St. Claire is on the run. She jumps at every shadow and cringes at the loud noises. The bruise on her wrist aches as she sits on the bus headed….somewhere. It doesn’t matter where. She just has to go.

Meanwhile, her father, a wealthy and high-powered defense lawyer, and her ex-fiancee have no idea where she has gone. She only left a cryptic message for her father saying she was ok…but was she really?

Her ex-fiancee, Michael, seems to be acting peculiar. Does he know something?

Noelle finds her way to Rick Spencer’s ranch in Colorado. Against his better judgment, he allows her to rent a room in the main house – his house. Being a Christian establishment, his hesitancy is only natural because of his polished reputation. Having a single woman stay in his house would be inappropriate, but he seems the broken, brittle look in her eyes and takes pity on her.

Noelle begins a journey to find herself and piece together fragments of images haunting her dreams. What happened to her? Why is she running? Will she ever stop shaking uncontrollably?

I loved this book! I cannot tell a lie. I picked it up two days ago and just finished all 382 pages about an hour ago. It was a very satisfying read and I look forward to picking up more of Ms. Heitzmann’s novels.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Chasing Francis by Ian Morgan Cron

Chase Falson’s faith fell apart. After two years of attempting to suppress his spiritual questions and struggles, he breaks down…in front of his whole congregation of thousands during a Sunday morning service. Needless to say, things did not go well.

After the sudden aftermath of being asked by the church elders to take a undetermined leave of absence, Chase calls the person he his closest to other than his therapist: his Uncle Kenny, who happens to live in Italy and happens to be a Franciscan monk.

Kenny urges Chase to come to Italy on a pilgrimage and follow the footsteps of Saint Francis of Assisi. His journey over the next two months changes Chase’s entire perspective on Christianity and the purpose of the church. When he finally returns home to Connecticut, he has to face the members of his congregation and his elders. Will they accept him back? Will he be able to apply the lessons he learned in Italy to life in Connecticut?

This book challenged my faith. The history that litters the pages fascinated me and yearned to keep reading and learning. The end of the book contains questions for each chapter if you want to use it in a book club. All in all, I would recommend this book to just about everyone.

Thank you, NavPress Publishing, for my free copy! The opinions expressed are completely my own and I was not pushed to write a positive review. I just happened to truly love the book.

City On Our Knees by TobyMac

Anthologies are something TobyMac knows about. Back when he was a member of DC Talk, they published a series known as Jesus Freaks, which contained a collection of stories about martyrs. The book gained so much momentum that they published multiple ones, and continue to publish them today.

With this new book inspired by his chart-topping song “City on Our Knees”, he gathers together stories from all over the nation of people who are trying to live out Jesus’ principles in everyday scenarios.

Each unit is entitled after a section of the lyrics in his song, such as “If we gotta start sometime, why not now?” or “We are one choice from together”. The stories range from raising money to help cure a vicious disease to moving to Africa to help the orphans over there to overcoming life-altering obstacles.

Despite the various stories, the main idea of the entire book speaks volumes: by placing our trust and faith in Jesus, ordinary people can accomplish anything. It does not matter how old you are, where you were born, or if you are a boy or a girl. The world is aching for someone to help those inhabiting it, so in the words of TobyMac, “If we gotta start sometime, why not now?”

Thank you, Bethany House Publishers, for my free copy!

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