Sunday, February 28, 2016

Roots & Sky by Christie Purifoy

A Journey Home in Four Seasons

When Christie Purifoy arrived at Maplehurst that September, she was heavily pregnant with both her fourth child and her dreams of creating a sanctuary that would be a fixed point in her busily spinning world. The sprawling Victorian farmhouse sitting atop a Pennsylvania hill held within its walls the possibility of a place where her family could grow, where friends could gather, and where Christie could finally grasp and hold the thing we all long for--home.

Publisher: Revell, 2016
Cover and Author Photos: Chelsea Hudson Photography
Design: Peter Gloege| LOOK Design Studio

"Lord, I love the house where you live, the place where your glory dwells."  Psalm 26:8

My Review
Roots & Sky follows a woman on her journey to live out her dream in an old farmhouse, away from the bustling city, a place where she can have a garden, teach her children, and follow the Lord. But with each restoration she and her husband tackle, Christie's paradise takes on a new form and so do her dreams. This author reveals how God's handiwork is stamped in the most ordinary, and sometimes unusual, places.

Christie Purifoy's poetic prose and artistic descriptions painted vivid pictures in my mind, layer upon layer with each chapter. I connected with this story because I, too, have an old farmhouse where the work never ends, yet it is my sanctuary. I, like Christie, have journeyed through the wilderness of life, longing for an oasis. I've also relaxed  in the oasis, too content to see the water slowly drying up, the palm leaves disintegrating, the  dry desert dust approaching to smother signs of life. And I believe each and every reader will find that connection within themselves, also. 

I recommend this book to anyone who is living their wilderness journey right now, to anyone who has just stepped out of the desert. To anyone who needs a story of hope, a reminder that God is always there. 

I gave this books 5 stars!

For more on Christie, visit her website at While you're there, follow her blog These Farmhouse Bookshelves for a closer view of Maplehurst. 

Friday, February 19, 2016

Cold Shot by Dani Pettrey

Four best friends,
and then one went missing...

In college, Griffin McCray and his four best friends had their lives planned out. Griffin and Luke Gallagher would join the Baltimore PD. Declan Gray would head to the FBI and Parker Mitchell would go on to graduate school as a crime scene analyst. But then Luke vanished before graduation and their world--and friendships--crumbled.

Now Griffin is a park ranger at Gettysburg, having left life as a SWAT-team sniper when a case went bad. The job is mostly quiet--until the day he captures two relic hunters uncovering skeletal remains near Little Round Top. Griffin just wants the case to go away, but charming forensic anthropologist Finley Scott determines that the body is modern--a young social justice lawyer missing since spring--and all evidence points to the work of an expert sniper. When FBI agent Declan Gray takes over the case, past and present collide. Griffin soon realizes he'll need to confront some of the darkest days of his life if he--and those he cares about--are going to escape a downward spiral of murder that crosses continents.

Publisher: Bethany House, 2016
Series: Chesapeake Valor, book #1

My Review
Gettysburg park ranger Griffin McCray enjoys working the night shift, patrolling the sacred ground where so many lost their lives during the Civil War. Then grave robbers interrupt his peaceful night, and Griffin comes to realize the body inside the grave doesn't belong to a Civil War soldier but to a modern-day woman. When forensic anthropologist Finley Scott is brought onto the case, Griffin's not only compelled to protect her life but to battle his electric attraction to her as well.

I can't say enough about this book! This story kept me guessing to the very end. I loved the instant romance between Griffin and Finley and their journey together. This author created many strong and lovable characters, ones I look forward to reading about again in future stories. Ms. Pettrey also left a surprise ending that has me highly anticipating her next book. 

I give this book 5 stars! 


For more about Dani Pettrey and her books, visit her website at

Thursday, February 4, 2016

When Life Gives New Slogans

Our first winter storm of the year.
This is my view from my living room window. 
When I started this blog a few years back, I was just beginning my writing career. I say "career" because it marked the first time I'd been paid for one of my stories.The figure on the check might have only been $0.75, but I was proud of that seventy-five cents. I bought a pop at the gas station.

At the time, I was a stay-at-home mom with a small toddler and two older children. Our hobby farm was thriving.

Some of my best thinking is done on the riding lawnmower, while cutting grass on the two flat acres of our ten-acre property. Here's where I adopted this blog's slogan "Hobby Farmer by Day, Author by Night."

Since then, my life has changed.

My toddler is now in Kindergarten, we can no longer claim to have a hobby farm (though we plan to rectify this come spring), I've once again joined the workforce, and I write every spare moment I get in between cooking, cleaning, working, laundry, church, and extra-curricular activities.

My new slogan is "Substitute Teacher by Day, Author by Whenever-I-Get-A-Chance-To-Write."

Not as catchy, but this is life for me at this moment in 2016. And that's okay. I'm enjoying my new job, I'm still plugging away on my stories during lunch breaks, while I'm cooking dinner, and after the kids go to bed (on the rare nights I can actually hold my eyes open).

Three years from now will my life's slogan change? Count on it.

But that's what keeps life interesting.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Thin Ice by Irene Hannon


After losing her parents in a car accident and her sister to a house fire, Christy Reed has been mired in grief. Life is finally starting to feel normal again when an envelope arrives in the mail--addressed in her sister's handwriting. And the note inside claims she is still alive.

FBI Special Agent Lance McGregor, a former Delta Force operator, is assigned to reopen the case, but he's coming up with more questions than answers. If Ginny Reed is still alive--who is the woman buried in her grave? Where is Ginny? And is Christy a pawn in a twisted cat-and-mouse game--or the target of a sinister plot? As he digs deeper, one thing becomes clear: whoever is behind the bizarre ruse has a deadly agenda.

Bestselling author and two-time Christy Award finalist Irene Hannon warms readers' hearts as they root for a romance between Lance and Christy, but she pulls out all the stops as this high-stakes thriller chills to the bone in a race to the finish.

Publisher: Revell, 2016
Cover Design: Kirk DouPonce,

My Review
Former pro-ice skater Christy Reed has finally started moving forward with her life again after losing her sister in a house fire and her parents in a car accident--all within a six month span. Then she receives an anonymous letter stating her sister is still alive. Christy contacts the FBI where Special Agent Lance McGregor is assigned to the case.

Lance's immediate attraction to Christy makes this case personal from the get-go. As they come to know each other, the unresolved issues in Lance's past begin to haunt him. If he can solve the case and keep Christy safe, perhaps their relationship can become more.

This plot is full of surprising twists and turns. I loved the instant sparks between Lance and Christy and the integrity of both characters. I recommend this book to romantic suspense fans and anyone who loves a good mystery. I give this book 5 stars!

Irene Hannon is the bestselling and award-winning author of more than fifty novels. For more on Irene and her books, visit