strawmom


Attracted to Fire
August 24, 2012, 9:06 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I was pleasantly surprised by DiAnn Mills’s book Attracted to Fire. Her main characters are Secret Service agents who are assigned the task of protecting the Vice President’s wayward daughter. Lindsay Hall has been through alcohol and drug withdrawal before, but this time it needs to be for good. Her parents send her to a ranch in Texas where she will be away from her temptations.

Meghan Connors is assigned to protective detail by the Vice President. Her first challenge does not start with the protectee. It has to do with Ash Zinders, the Special Agent in Charge. He does not believe that women have a place in the Secret Service, especially not when it comes to the Vice President, later President. He has his demons, as do Meghan and Lindsay. As the story progresses, all these characters must band together to combat these demons. They are, as Lindsay later says, the Three Musketeers.

The story progresses well. The good guys win, and get married (!) There is intrigue, deviousness, and suspense. Unfortunately there is a good guy who dies, but I loved this book.

 

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Trusting God
August 23, 2012, 9:08 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Trusting God: A Girlfriends in God Faith Adventure

The title is what caught my eye. And the pages inside match what the title promises. Sharon Jaynes, Gwen Smith, and Mary Southerland offer us compassion. Each chapter has a truth section, a Friend to Friend section, and a prayer section. At the conclusion of each section, there are reflection questions. This would be a great book to use for a Bible study.

 

I believe that these women do a very effective job of sharing their faith and the faith of those around them, from grandchildren to Sunday School children, to illustrate our faith in God.

 

The sections of the book are divided up into weeks. Week 11 was the section that spoke to me. Sharon Jaynes wrote about experiencing a miscarriage. I have been through that pain. I should focus more on the beautiful children I have and less on the losses, but it is so easy to get mired in that pain. On page 238, Sharon writes, “All through those years of infertility and loss, Satan, the Enemy, taunted me with words of doubt. God doesn’t love you, he’d say. If He loved you, He’d give you what you asked for. He doesn’t love you. You can’t trust Him with your heart.” And yet, she cannot overlook what she WAS given.

 

I received a free copy of this book from Multnomah Books and reviewed it for them. I was under no obligation to give a favorable review.

 



Accused
August 16, 2012, 8:42 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

There is one line that has remained with me after reading Janice Cantore’s book Accused. Detective Carly Edwards lost her father to cancer five years ago. She has a hard time accepting that God would take him away. Her ex-husband tells her, “I know you miss him. I know it doesn’t seem fair. But everyone dies, Carly, whether it’s cancer, a traffic accident, or going to sleep and never waking up.” As a detective, Carly has seen her share of death, whether from gunfire or car accidents, but her father’s death hit too close to home. Carly finds peace with herself and God following a mountain-top retreat and the death of a close friend.

I was struck by what Nick says to Carly. It’s true. We all have this idea that we’re going to live long lives and die in our sleep surrounded by our families. Some of us do. My husband’s grandparents were married for just over seventy years when his grandmother passed away. Some of us don’t. One of our neighbors has pancreatic cancer. All sorts of treatments are available for that. . . . but it was discovered too late for those to be an option for her. On Facebook, I learn that someone from my hometown, whom is younger than me, has passed away. A telephone call to my parents reveals that he was hit by a car. So now, I feel a little like Carly. Why him? There’s a passage in the Bible that says that God knits us into our mother’s womb. He knows what our future holds.

 

 



Grumble
August 10, 2012, 8:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I loved Caryn Dahlstrand Rivadeneira’s book Grumble Hallelujah. In the book, Ms. Rivadeneira describes the process of learning to be grateful for her life, even when all she can manage is a grumble.

This process starts with Caryn laying on her kitchen floor crying about how her life isn’t supposed to be this way.She is supposed to live the life she had, where she and her husband don’t have financial difficulty, where her parents stay married. I found an ally in Caryn, as I’m sure other readers did. Who among us hasn’t at some time or another whined, “It’s not supposed to be like this.” Maybe whine is an unfair term, but I’m sure we all have been there. I know I have.

Caryn covers a lot in her book, from jealousy issues to issues of fear. I found myself wishing I could meet her to discuss this book. I imagined that we would find a lot of common ground. Especially after I found out that she likes Manitowoc, Wisconsin. I spent childhood summers near there, so I am familiar with what is enchanting about the town.