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True to You Becky Wade

Monday, June 25, 2012

Through Rushing Water by Catherine Richmond

Sophia has her life all planned out—but her plan didn’t include being jilted or ending up in Dakota Territory.

Sophia Makinoff is certain that 1876 is the year that she’ll become the wife of a certain US Congressman, and happily plans her debut into the Capitol city. But when he proposes to her roommate instead, Sophia is stunned. Hoping to flee her heartache and humiliation, she signs up with the Board of Foreign Missions on a whim.

With dreams of a romantic posting to the Far East, Sophia is dismayed to find she’s being sent to the Ponca Indian Agency in the bleak Dakota Territory. She can’t even run away effectively and begins to wonder how on earth she’ll be able to guide others as a missionary. But teaching the Ponca children provides her with a joy she has never known—and never expected—and ignites in her a passion for the people she’s sent to serve.

It’s a passion shared by the Agency carpenter, Willoughby Dunn, a man whose integrity and selflessness are unmatched. The Poncas are barely surviving. When U.S. policy decrees that they be uprooted from their land and marched hundreds of miles away in the middle of winter, Sophia and Will wade into rushing waters to fight for their friends, their love, and their destiny.

Through Rushing Water by Catherine Richmond was an interesting and truly novel that chronicled the sad story of the Ponca and the growth that Sophia experienced. The plot line was well written and clearly displayed the plight of the Poncas as well as their incredible faith and strength through the hard times. The story centered around Sophia and her growth as a person and her finding the truth about God and ministry. Because of this, I felt like the story reached its climax halfway through the book when the Poncas were forced to leave instead of in the last fourth of the book as is typical. This caused the last third of the book to really drag for me and it was not nearly as interesting and spellbinding as the rest of the novel.

Despite this, I enjoyed the effort and research that the author put into discovering the truth about the Poncas and realistically portraying their forced way of life by the Americans. The suffering that the Poncas endured at the hands of white men made me extremely sad, and their wise response and their trusting in God despite it all left me speechless. I was glad to see some of the Poncas take their story public and force the government to make a change to their policies.

The main characters were well developed while some of supporting characters played the stereotypical roles one finds in many stories involving Indian and white men interactions. Will and Sophia both showed astounding and touching love and respect for the Poncas and continued to speak on their behalf even after the Poncas were forced to move. Will was a godly man who lived what he believed and ministered and taught more Poncas about God than the snobby minister. Henry, the minister to the  Poncas, was the stereotypical ''missionary'' to the minister who cared more about "Americanizing" the Poncas than ministering to the people and teaching them about God in love. However, he did begin to change as the story went on and by the end was acting out of love and treated the Poncas with respect. Sophia was a spirited and determined woman who, though she became a missionary teacher for the wrong reasons, soon discovered that she loved the Poncas and realized that simply memorizing prayers does not make a relationship with God. She realized that she had to have faith in Him and pray from her heart.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novel and learning more about the Ponca people. While it was sad to read about their mistreatment, the courage and boldness they displayed to the Americans was truly inspiring. I highly recommend this novel for anyone wanting a romantic yet historical read.

I received this ebook for free from Thomas Nelson Publishers through Booksneeze.com in exchange for an honest review.

Finding Our Way Home by Charlene Ann Baumbich

When professional ballerina Sasha Davis suffers a career ending injury at age thirty eight, she leaves her Boston-based company and home and retreats to the home of her youth in Minnesota. But Sasha's injuries limit her as much as her mother's death haunts her. Concluding she cannot recover on her own, she reluctantly hires a temporary live-in aide.
Enter the super capable Evelyn Burt. As large boned as Sasha is delicate, Evelyn is her employer's opposite in every way. To top it all off, nineteen year old Evelyn is newly engaged and sees the world as one big, shining opportunity.

Evelyn soon discovers, however, that Sasha needs to heal more than simply bones. Slowly, as the wounds begin to mend and the tables tilt, the two women form an unlikely alliance and discover the astounding power of even the smallest act when it is performed out of love.

Finding Our Way Home by Charlene Ann Baumbich was an excellent novel, filled with bonding moments and life changing realizations. The plot line flowed smoothly and easily transitioned from past memories to present situations. The change in point of views from Sasha, Evelyn, and Donald were clear and helped the reader understand the full unfolding situation. There were not any huge twists or mysteries in the story, but it was extremely well written and kept the reader tied to the novel to see what would happen to Sasha and Evelyn.

The characters were well developed, complex and enjoyable to read about. Sasha started as a prickly and depressed woman, but as she began to process her injuries, her life, and her role in the world with Evelyn's help, she transformed into a woman capable of love, kindness, and following after God. Evelyn was a hilarious and truly enjoyable character. She was somewhat eccentric as well as bold, rash, and unafraid to speak her mind. Her growth through caring for Sasha and issues with her fiance was inspiring and her return to her parents and their love was wonderful to see. Donald was less developed as the two primary women in the novel, but his characteristics were still clear. He was a man unafraid to show his emotions and incredibly patient in his love and wait for Sasha.

Overall, I truly enjoyed Finding Our Way Home with its complex and beautiful characters and interesting plot line. I would highly recommend this book to anyone needing an incredible read filled with the bond of love, growth through hard times, and relying on God when all else fails.

I received this novel for free from Waterbrook Multnomah Press in exchange for an honest review.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Starring Me by Krista McGee

Kara McKormick is told she’s auditioning to star in a new teen variety show. But it’s what she isn’t told that could change her life.

The feisty New Yorker moves to sunny Orlando to participate in a month-long audition, where she’ll live with nine other contestants and an eccentric housemother. Kara knows that the show already has a big-time celebrity lined up for the co-host, but she doesn’t know who it is.

Chad Beacon quickly rose to fame after winning America’s Next Star, but he doesn’t want his entire career to be about singing. There is so much more he wants to do—like act. The new variety show sounds like the perfect next step for him, but his parents want him to have a co-star who shares his faith since they’ll be spending so much time together.

Acting is high on Kara’s priority list. But a relationship with God? Not so much. In fact, she’s tried to stay away from anything religious. But God is after Kara’s heart and He’s put people in her life who are showing her there’s far more to Christianity than rules and judgment.

Starring Me by Krista McGee was a cute and enjoyable novel that was filled with humor, poignant truths, and romance. This novel is the sequel to First Date, but it can still be read as a stand-alone novel. Starring Me was loosely based on the story of Isaac and Rebekah from Genesis 24.  The plot line was easy to follow, flowed well, and interesting. There was not a lot of suspense as the reader knew more than the main characters, but the story line was still exciting and fun to read. There was one area that was left unclear to the reader, and they were left guessing as to this person's true intentions.  It was also neat to see the characters develop and change and the reader was often left wondering whether or not the main characters would end up together or if Kara would find God.

The characters were realistic and fun to read about. I enjoyed seeing Kara's growth and her journey toward God and His open arms. Her interactions with the other characters were both humorous and illuminating. Learning more about Addy, Jonathan, and their relationship from the first book, First Date, was exciting as well. Chad was also a well developed character. It was nice to see a good representation of homeschooling as well as to see a Christian in the popular music and tv industry. I also liked that his parents were involved in making  his career. Flora, the housemother for the auditions, was one of my favorite characters. She was really eccentric, but she had a wonderful relationship with God, was not afraid to speak boldly about Him, and loved to read.

The themes of Starring Me were clear and beautifully expressed. Some of the themes including, the our need of Christ as our Savior, having a relationship with God, and being bold and serving others. During one of Flora and Kara's many conversations about God, Flora told Kara,

"Sin is like poison. We are all infected, and it is always fatal.
However, Jesus offered us a cure."

 ...Kara replied, "What if there is no sin? What if you're wrong?"

"When God gets ahold of your heart,
he shows himself to you in so many ways that you will know he is real.
Ask him to do that for you" said Flora. (pp 246-247)

This is just one conversation of many that beautifully portrayed the truth of God and the Gospel.

Overall, I really enjoyed Starring Me, and I would highly recommend it, especially to young adults and teens.

I received this book for free from Booksneeze.com in exchange for an honest review. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

My Hair and God's Mercies . . . New Every Morning by Yvette Maher

Yvette Maher, a Kentucky farm girl, shares her life’s traumas, trials, and triumphs. Before Yvette became a Christian, she dealt with emotional pain by filling the voids with drugs, alcohol, and empty relationships. Yet God did not abandon her. Through poignant stories laced with humor and irony, Yvette reveals how God has redeemed her devastating childhood by enabling her to forgive her murderous and unfaithful father and cope with her mother’s debilitating depression. She tells how God has blessed her marriage even though she was several months pregnant when she walked down the aisle. Throughout the wild changes that have occurred in Yvette’s life, God has been with her, ever-present and offering grace at each turn.
 
My Hair and God's Mercies...New Every Morning by Yvette Maher was a poignant and moving book that was a beautiful mixture of hilarious stories, saddening tragedies, and convicting truths. The book had its own flow that displayed the author's personality. The story did not necessarily chronologically follow Yvette's life, but it was easy to follow both her story and her spiritual growth through it. Yvette had an excellent sense of humor despite her harsh circumstances, and I enjoyed seeing how she responded to certain situations once she experienced God's love. Her writing style was enjoyable and easy to follow while still being filled with important aspects of God's truth.
 
I loved how each chapter ended with a recipe that meant a lot to Yvette. I cannot wait to try some of them out! The truths and growth that Yvette experienced was tremendous. I was able to connect with her thoughts and what she learned even though I have not been through the same tragedies and hard life that she has. Yvette made some great points, and this will certainly be a book I go back to when I am in need of a reminder of what God's grace can do for a broken family.
 
I highly recommend this book to anyone who is struggling or just needs a reminder of what God can do.
 
I received this book for free from Tyndale House Publishers through NetGalley.com

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Twelfth Imam by Joel C. Rosenberg

View the book trailer Here
Tension rises in the Middle East.                       
As the apocalyptic leaders of Iran call for the annihilation of Israel and the United States, CIA operative David Shirazi is sent into Tehran with one objective: use all means necessary to disrupt Iran’s nuclear weapons program—without leaving American fingerprints and without triggering a regional war.

As David begins to infiltrate the Iranian government, news spreads throughout the region of an obscure religious cleric hailed as the Islamic messiah known as the Mahdi or the Twelfth Imam. News of his miracles, healings, signs, and wonders spreads like wildfire, as do rumors of a new and horrific war.

With the prophecy of the Twelfth Imam seemingly fulfilled, Iran’s military prepares to strike Israel and bring about the End of Days. Shirazi must take action to save his country and the world, but the clock is ticking.                       

The Twelfth Imam by Joel C. Rosenberg is an intense political thriller that masterfully conveys the true tensions that lie in the Middle East. The first book in Rosenberg's new series, it beautifully sets the stage for the following novels. The plot line of this novel is well developed and pulls in characters from all areas of the story. At the beginning it is hard to see how all the characters are important and part of the unfolding events, but as the novel continues, it becomes increasingly evident of their connections to each other and to the overall plot. There is a tone of urgency and impending destruction throughout the novel that keeps the plot line moving at a fast pace. The novel is a wonderful combination of quick moving action segments and incredibly researched and insightful comments about the Shia Muslims' beliefs and the rising tensions in the Middle East.

The characters were interesting and realistic as well. At times they seemed less developed when compared to the intricacy of the overall plot line, but it did not take away from the story; rather, it left room for continued character growth in the sequel, The Tehran Initiative. David and Najjar both experienced growth throughout the novel, and it was interesting to see their thought processes as they began to grasp what was truly going on.

The Twelfth Imam was a very interesting novel that clearly showed what many Muslims believe as well as pointed out the growth of Christianity in the Middle East through Jesus dreams and visions. I learned a lot about some groups of Muslims views about the End Times and about the implications of their beliefs.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novel by Joel C. Rosenberg. It was not a quick read, but it was informative and I was not bored while I read. I highly recommend it, and I cannot wait to read the Tehran Initiative.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Last Sacrifice by Sigmund Brouwer and Hank Hanegraaff

Download the first chapter Here
Helius, Nero’s most trusted adviser, anticipates the death of his sworn enemy, the legendary warrior Gallus Sergius Vitas, scheduled to die a gruesome death in the arena. However, the badly beaten man who appears in the amphitheater is not who he seems. Rescued by a stranger and given a mysterious scroll, Vitas is told he must decipher this letter to find the answers he needs—a letter that Helius is also determined to decipher and to keep hidden from Nero. As Nero’s reign of terror grows, so does his circle of enemies.

The Last Sacrifice was an excellent sequel to the Last Disciple. This novel finds Vitas waiting to die, as well as reveals the devastation that awaits Jews and Christians alike as Nero becomes more and more insane. The plot line of this novel picks up right where the first novel left off and continues at a quick and exciting pace. The plot is filled with mysterious characters, unexpected betrayals, and unforeseen twists. It ends with a cliff hanger that leaves the reader on the edge of their seat for the next book (out on August 1st, 2012). The tone of the novel varies as the book alternates between the perspectives of different characters.

The characters continued to be developed even more from the first novel, and some additional characters were added as well. These new characters and some of the old ones revealed new strengths and weaknesses and allegiances. Vitas and his wife continued in their growth as characters and as new Christians. It was neat to see their developing relationships with God and with other characters as a result.

Overall, I really enjoyed the Last Sacrifice. I would highly recommend this novel, but only after reading the Last Disciple.

The Last Disciple by Sigmund Brouwer and Hank Hanegraaff

Download first chapter: Here
First-century Rome is a perilous city as Nero stalks the political circles and huddled groups of believers. To be safe, Christians must remain invisible.

Gallus Sergius Vitas is the only man within Nero’s trusted circle willing to do what it takes to keep the empire together. He struggles to lessen Nero’s monstrosities against the people of Rome—especially the Christians. But as three Greek letters are scrawled as graffiti throughout the city, Nero’s anger grows.

As the early church begins to experience the turbulence Christ prophesied as the beginning of the last days, an enemy seeks to find John’s letter, Revelation, and destroy it. Meanwhile the early Christians must decipher it and cling to the hope it provides as they face the greatest of all persecutions.

The Last Disciple was an exciting and eye-opening novel that clearly revealed what it was like to be a Christian in Rome during Nero's reign. The plot line was well written and varied between a couple of different people's perspectives, allowing the reader to understand what was really going on. There were several instances of suspense and unexpected twists that added to the feeling of uncertainty that the characters felt in those times of persecution. The idea that Rome was out to destroy John's letter was interesting, and these authors do not hesitate to throw their own spin on areas in history where not a lot is known. It was incredibly interesting to see their perspectives and opinions about certain historical events after their own research. I did not completely agree with their view of Revelation, but I was able to completely enjoy the book despite my disagreements.

The characters were well developed and easy to identify with, despite the span of several centuries since that era. I enjoyed seeing Vitas' growth as he wrestled with Nero's actions and as he learned more about John and why his letter of Revelation was so important. The other more minor characters also developed over the story and allowed the reader to begin to understand more why they were included in the story. The background and the Roman culture were also researched and developed well throughout the novel, and it really helped me become immersed in the story and the time period.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novel, and I would highly recommend it and its sequel, the Last Sacrifice.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Blue Moon Promise by Colleen Coble

Lucy Marsh’s worldly resources are running out, but she’s fiercely determined to care for her younger brother and sister. When she discovers that their father’s recent death was no accident, Lucy is eager to leave town. She accepts a proxy marriage she believes will provide safe refuge. But trouble follows her to Wichita Falls, Texas, where the man she came to marry seems surprised to suddenly have a wife and children to provide for.
Nate Stanton always hoped he’d marry someday, but running the family ranch meant he had no time for romance. When his father deposits Lucy Marsh—a city girl—on his doorstep, with two siblings in the bargain, he expects ranch life will send her running on the first train out of town. But Lucy is made of tougher stuff than Nate imagined. When danger moves in, Nate realizes he’d give anything to protect Lucy and the children he’s grown to love. Even if it means giving up his ranch.

Blue Moon Promise by Colleen Coble is an interesting novel filled with love, dreams, and danger that I heartily enjoyed. The plot line of the novel was clear and intriguing. While at times it seemed to be just the typical plot of a western romance, the winding strands of suspense and mystery soon developed the book into so much more. I enjoyed the wild twists, the hilarious encounters of Lucy with ranching life, and the budding feelings between Nate and Lucy. The story was an excellent mix of mystery, romance, and family that kept me deeply engrossed in the story.

The characters were equally as charming. Nate was my all time favorite character. His hidden love and kindness enfolded throughout the novel, and his utter confusion about Lucy was adorable. Lucy was also a sweet and engaging character. Her stubbornness led to some interesting situations, and her desire to see her extended family united was admirable. I loved seeing her and Nate interact.

The themes of the novel were clear and important. These themes included the importance of love, forgiveness, relying on God instead of one's own strength, and honesty.

Overall, I enjoyed this novel immensely, and I would highly recommend Blue Moon Promise and any of Colleen Coble's other works.

I received this eBook for free from Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.

Saving Hope by Margaret Daley

When the people you love are threatened, it's personal.
When a teenager goes missing from the Beacon of Hope School, Texas Ranger Wyatt Sheridan and school director Kate Winslow are forced into a dangerous struggle against a human trafficking organization. Kate, his mother, and his daughter may be in danger because of his involvement.

Now it's personal, and Wyatt finds both his faith and investigative skills challenged as he fights to discover the mastermind behind the ring before evil destroys everyone he loves.

Saving Hope by Margaret Daley was an interesting and spell-binding novel that was eye opening to the reality of child prostitution in America. The plot was easy to follow yet kept details hidden in order to keep the reader tied to the book. The novel was filled with suspense, and there were times when I was not sure what was going to happen next. There was a good mix of romance, mystery, and sobering events that kept me interested and did not leave me bored.

The main characters were well developed, though the speed of the events in the story oftentimes caused their development in the story to be lacking. However, despite that, I did enjoy seeing Wyatt's return to trusting the Lord, and Kate's realizing that she did not have to depend on her parents' money to save her girls. The minor characters did not receive as much attention so there was less character development in them, but Wyatt's daughter and mother did learn from their mistakes throughout the story.

The themes of this novel were clear and sobering. It was sad to see that there is indeed a market in America for the trafficking of young girls into prostitution and other harmful situations. This novel did a great job relaying the seriousness of these issues and the importance of fighting back through better police involvement and creating safe homes like Bridge of Hope for the girls who are rescued or runaway. Saving Hope also clearly portrayed the importance of good parenting and treating one's children with respect and love and not just issuing seemingly unfair rules.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novel, and I would highly recommend it to someone looking for an interesting and exciting yet still thought provoking read.

I received this e-Book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review.

Need You Now by Beth Wiseman

When big-city life threatens the safety of one of their children, Brad and Darlene Henderson move with their three teenagers from Houston to the tiny town of Round Top, Texas.

Adjusting to small-town life is difficult for the kids, especially fifteen-year-old Grace who is coping in a dangerous way.

Married life hasn’t always been bliss, but their strong faith has carried Brad and Darlene through the difficult times. When Darlene takes a job outside the home for the first time in their marriage, the domestic tension rises.

While working with special needs children at her new job, the widowed father of one of the students starts paying more attention to Darlene than is appropriate. Problem is, she feels like someone is listening to her for the first time in a long time.

If Darlene ever needed God . . . it’s now.

Need You Now was a heartwarming story which clearly portrayed the importance of relying on God, maintaining family relationships, and being careful with choosing friends. The plot line of the novel was interesting and flowed smoothly. The storyline involved some events that were not unexpected, and it was interesting and inspiring to see how the characters had to work through their troubles.

The characters were also well developed. Almost all of the characters were constantly growing and discovering more about themselves and about God as the story continued. I especially enjoyed seeing the growth in Darlene and her neighbor Layla and the irony of their flip-flopping roles in each other's lives.

The themes of Need You Now were clearly explored and left the reader with new understandings. One of the topics that was portrayed was the importance of honesty and making time in relationships in order to know what is going in the other's life and grow closer. A few others were forgiveness, being open about how you feel, and relying on God above all else.

Overall, I really enjoyed this novel, and I hope that others who read it find it as inspirational and moving as I did.

I received this novel for free from Booksneeze.com and Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Flight of Shadows by Sigmund Brouwer

Her genetic secret could change humanity forever.

Her DNA grants her the ultimate power.

But all she wants is to disappear

Looming buildings rise into the sky of near-future America, shadowing the desperate poverty of the soovie parks, death doctors, and fear bombs. In this world of walled cities, where status matters most, Caitlyn Brown is desperate to remain invisible, wrongly believing that what shy needs to hide is the deformity on her back. However, the powers of the city want her for so much more.

Caityln is forced to take flight again and ends up relying on the help of Razor, a street-smart illusionist she cannot seem to trust. Her only hope is to reach friends who are already being tracked by government.
With a twisted bounty hunter in full pursuit, she and Razor begin to learn the unthinkable about her past and the unique gifts of her DNA. It leads Caitlyn to a choice between the two men who love her, and whether to keep her freedom or sacrifice herself for human destiny.


Flights of Shadows by Sigmund Brouwer is a fast moving novel that deeply explores the consequences of removing morals from both science and society. As the sequel to Broken Angel, I would highly recommend reading Broken Angel first. While Flight of Shadows would be fine as a standalone novel, the storyline is easier to follow if it is read after Broken Angel. It had been a couple of years since I had read Broken Angel, so it took a little while for me to pick up the storyline.

The plot line of Flight of Shadows moves quickly and is full of unexpected twists and turns. There are unseen enemies, surprising friends, and a very unexpected ending. While I liked the ending of the book, I felt it was kind of cop out. The way out, so to speak, left the problems of the world untouched and seemed to recommend escapism from one's problems. However, I still enjoyed the flow of the story.

The characters were well developed, and the reader learns even more about Caitlyn, Billy, Theo, Jordan, and Carson as the book progresses. New characters, such as Razor, add more dimension and mystery to the story and help keep the plot moving. I liked Razor a lot. He added humor and depth to the novel. I did not like how the author resolved Caitlyn's decision between the two men who loved her. If anything, I think the revelation author made should have caused Caitlyn to choose the other man. I agreed with man she chose, I just did not like how she made the decision.

The themes of Flight of Shadows are very intriguing. While Broken Angel explored the consequences of "if religious extremists in America managed total political control over society, Flight of a Shadows reveals even darker possibilities of a society that reverts to total loss of freedom for all except the wealthy. The novel explores the idea of America becoming a place of extreme poverty with people broken up into the wealthy Influentials in walled cities, with Industrials living in shacks outside and basically enslaved to the Influentials. Below that there are the Illegals who have no status, no money, no work, and are ruled by gangs. Flight of Shadows clearly showed the frightening consequences of when a society is content to stand by while freedoms are denied to some people groups and taken away slowly from everyone.

Flight of Shadows also explores what happens when all moral constraints are removed from science, specifically genetic experimentation with humans.

Overall, Flight of Shadows was a very interesting and intriguing novel, and I would highly recommend it.

I received this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah Press in exchange for an honest review.


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Flame of Resistance By Tracy Groot

Nazi occupation has stolen much from Brigitte Durand. Family. Freedom. Hope for a future. Forced to turn her home into Germans-only brothel to survive, Brigitte clings to patriotism by sneaking food to the French Resistance and the downed airmen they are hiding nearby.

When American fighter pilot Tom Jaeger is shot down and picked up by the Resistance, he becomes the linchpin in their plan to leverage Brigitte's sympathy. By posing as a German officer, Tom can smuggle out critical intel she acquires from other soldiers about the nearby bridges, whose capture and defense will be crucial to Allied forces.

D-Day looms, and everyone know invasion is imminent. But so is treachery. When loyalties are betrayed, the life of one American pilot jeopardizes everything. He becomes more important than the mission to a man who cannot bear to lose another agent...and to a woman who is more than just a prostitute, who finally realizes her courage could change history.

Flame of Resistance by Tracy Groot was an interesting novel, filled with betrayal, love, and sacrifice. The plot line was excellently written and intricately woven with mystery, suspense, and unexpected curve balls. The last few chapters were incredible. I was just blown away by the twists and turns at a point where the conclusion seemed obvious and heart wrenching. Of course, the conclusion was still heart wrenching, but it was much better than what I imagined it to be. However, there were several points in the story that seemed impossible and unrealistic. For example, the spies for the Resistance were horribly unprepared and trained for their missions. While I understand that part of the reason was because their leader was falling apart, it still seemed unbelievable considering how secretive and well organized their resistance group was. Overall though the plot was very interesting, and I read the book without stopping in one afternoon.

The characters were not as well developed as the plot. Tom was a fairly static character, which was disappointing considering his importance to the storyline. I would have preferred if he had experienced more growth during the story. Brigitte was an interesting character. While I understand that she felt a brothel was the only way she could survive, I did not like the author's inference that it was OK for the character to continue in that lifestyle later on the book once Brigitte realized she was able to accomplish so much more than that. I also wish that Tom had given Brigitte stronger message than that God accepts all even the ''worst'' sinners. While this is true, it does not mean that one is supposed to continue in that lifestyle. A person is called to leave their sinful lifestyles when they come to God. I also disliked the fact that the characters worshiped and valued their country and patriotism more than God and doing what was right. While those things are certainly worth valuing, I just wish there had been a better balance shown in the story.

Despite these issues, there were a couple characters that did develop more throughout the novel. Michel Rousseau and Hauptmann Braun were my favorite characters. Michel was a very major character despite the fact that the story centered around Tom and Brigitte. He and Braun experienced the most growth and development as characters, and I enjoyed seeing and experiencing their thoughts and changing ideas. Braun was an incredible character, and I loved seeing his changes throughout the story.

Flame of Resistance was a good story overall. The plot was fantastic, but some of the supposedly main characters experienced little to no growth which took away from the story. The themes of the novel could have been developed more, and I disagreed with the way some of the values were esteemed in the story. However, the novel was still an excellent read; I would just recommend that you be prepared for some violence and other improprieties that come along with a brothel.

I received this book for free from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

Covenant Child by Terri Blackstock

Amanda's heart broke as she watched them drive her beloved twins away. She resolved to hope...and to fight for them until her last breath.

Kara and Lizzie are heiresses to one of the largest fortunes in the country. But when their father dies suddenly, the toddlers are taken from the arms of Amanda, their loving stepmother, and given to relatives who only want the children's fortune for themselves.

Kara and Lizzie grow up questioning their worth . . . until the day when they learn the truth.

Covenant Child by Terri Blackstock was a beautiful analogy of the love and patience of God and the salvation He gives to His lost children. The plot line was woven with both the perspective of Kara, one of the two children, and Amanda, the loving stepmother. While the story was supposed to have an obvious ending because of its metaphorical nature, the steps to reaching that ending were unexpected and kept me engrossed in the twists and turns of the novel.

The characters of this novel were well developed and realistic. Amanda was an incredible mother, and she showed amazing strength and patience as she trusted God with the care of her children for eighteen years. She laid down her own desires and plans in order to maintain Lizzie and Kara's fortune until they were legally allowed to return and claim it. Lizzie and Kara, while twins, had very different characteristics. Lizzie was quick to return to both Amanda and God and accept the life held in trust for her. Kara, on the other hand, was like the older son in the parable of the prodigal son and like many of us when we are given the opportunity to receive salvation from God. We turn away and prefer to live in the hardships and heartache of sin.

The themes of this novel were excellent and clearly portrayed. These themes included the love offered by our Father and the inheritance that is held in trust for us by God until the time when we leave our stubbornness and sin and come into His arms.

Overall, Covenant Child was a beautiful picture of the love of our Father and His never failing patience as He waits for us with open arms and blessings.

I received this eBook from Booksneeze.com and Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for an honest review.