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True to You Becky Wade

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Buttermilk Sky by Jan Watson


Read an excerpt here

Weary of the expectations imposed on her by her strict upbringing, eighteen-year-old Mazy Pelfrey prepares to leave her home in the Kentucky mountains for the genteel city of Lexington, where she’ll attend secretarial school. She knows her life is about to change—and only for the better. Everything will be blue skies from now on.

But business school is harder than she thought it would be and the big city not as friendly, until she meets a charming young man from a wealthy family, Loyal Chambers. When Loyal sets his sights on her, Mazy begins to see that everything she’d ever wished to have is right before her eyes. The only hindrance to her budding romance is a former beau, Chanis Clay, the young sheriff she thought she’d left firmly behind.

Danger rumbles like thunder on a high mountain ridge when Mazy’s cosseted past collides with her clouded future and forces her to come to terms with what she really wants.

If you have read Skip Rock Shallows or Tattler's Branch, you will be excited to finally read a novel that focuses on primarily Mazy, Lilly's younger sister, and Chanis. Both of these characters have appearances in previous novels, but this is the first time they are the main characters. While Buttermilk Sky could be read on its own, I felt like the character development in this novel was rather limited. I understood more about these characters from previous novels, there was certainly more character development for both Chanis and Mazy in this novel. The other characters in this novel received absolutely no development at all, and at several points I thought they completely detracted from the story because I was too busy trying to figure out how they connected and what their role was. Loyal was a terrible addition as a potential beau because he completely lacked dimension and was completely unbelievable in his role as a result. Cinnamon was a cute character, but I thought she completely detracted from the story at hand and could have been developed into the story in a much better way.

The pace of this novel was also rather drawn out, and it was hard for me to stay involved in the story at times. However, once the story reached the climax, the speed picks up so much that I had no idea what was going on and the resolution seemed completely unbelievable. I wish the story had moved at a quicker pace to begin with so that the author could have spent more time on the ending. The epilogue was disappointing at best.

Overall, I was not a huge fan of Buttermilk Sky. I have loved all of the other Jan Watson novels I have read, so if this is your first time reading her novels, I would highly recommend reading her other works instead if you are disappointed with this read.

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

Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef with Ron Brackin

Since he was a small boy, Mosab Hassan Yousef has had an inside view of the deadly terrorist group Hamas. The oldest son of Sheikh Hassan Yousef, a founding member of Hamas and its most popular leader, young Mosab assisted his father for years in his political activities while being groomed to assume his legacy, politics, status . . . and power. But everything changed when Mosab turned away from terror and violence, and embraced instead the teachings of another famous Middle East leader. In Son of Hamas, Mosab reveals new information about the world’s most dangerous terrorist organization and unveils the truth about his own role, his agonizing separation from family and homeland, the dangerous decision to make his newfound faith public, and his belief that the Christian mandate to “love your enemies” is the only way to peace in the Middle East. - See more at: http://www.tyndale.com/Son-of-Hamas/9781414333083#.VFj9Qskyuqg
Since he was a small boy, Mosab Hassan Yousef has had an inside view of the deadly terrorist group Hamas. The oldest son of Sheikh Hassan Yousef, a founding member of Hamas and its most popular leader, young Mosab assisted his father for years in his political activities while being groomed to assume his legacy, politics, status . . . and power. But everything changed when Mosab turned away from terror and violence, and embraced instead the teachings of another famous Middle East leader. In Son of Hamas, Mosab reveals new information about the world’s most dangerous terrorist organization and unveils the truth about his own role, his agonizing separation from family and homeland, the dangerous decision to make his newfound faith public, and his belief that the Christian mandate to “love your enemies” is the only way to peace in the Middle East.
Son of Hamas is now available in softcover with an all-new chapter about events since the book’s release such as the revelation of Mosab’s Israeli intelligence handler’s true identity, and Homeland Security’s effort to deport the author.
Since he was a small boy, Mosab Hassan Yousef has had an inside view of the deadly terrorist group Hamas. The oldest son of Sheikh Hassan Yousef, a founding member of Hamas and its most popular leader, young Mosab assisted his father for years in his political activities while being groomed to assume his legacy, politics, status . . . and power. But everything changed when Mosab turned away from terror and violence, and embraced instead the teachings of another famous Middle East leader. In Son of Hamas, Mosab reveals new information about the world’s most dangerous terrorist organization and unveils the truth about his own role, his agonizing separation from family and homeland, the dangerous decision to make his newfound faith public, and his belief that the Christian mandate to “love your enemies” is the only way to peace in the Middle East. - See more at: http://www.tyndale.com/Son-of-Hamas/9781414333083#.VFj9Qskyuqg

Son of Hamas by Mosab Hassan Yousef with Ron Brackin was an illuminating book that displayed the intricacies of the Hamas organization, the IDF, and the tensions between Israel and Palestine. I enjoyed the clarity of this book as Yousef outlined the different fights that broke out between Israel and Palestine, the rise of Hamas, and the political decisions that only increased the strife between the two groups. I did not know that much about Hamas, and I appreciated being able to understand and experience the movement through the eyes of Yousef, an inside and very influential member. I did not realize how much of the conflict between Israel and Palestine was influenced by corrupt Palestinian leaders who pushed the conflict forward for their own goals. I also was shocked by the conditions that existed in both the Palestinian and Israeli prisons; the amount of power that Hamas was still able to demonstrate from inside prison was incredible.

 I also loved the relationship that grew up between Yousef and the Israeli captain who first led him to become a spy for Israel. I appreciated the integrity of both men as they sought to reduce the deaths of both Israelis and Palestinians alike through the removal of dangerous Hamas men. Yousef is an incredible man who found himself in very dangerous circumstances, but who still chose to pursue honesty and eventually the Bible and God. I loved seeing his relationship with God grow and develop, even as he risked being ostracized from his family and even death. Overall, I found Son of Hamas to be an excellent read and thoroughly showed both the intricacies of the Hamas movement and the conflict that still exists between Israel and Palestine.

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