Friday, July 26, 2013

A Big Year for Lily

As a homeschooling momma, I am always looking for new and fun books for my little ladies to read! So of course, I was thrilled to see a children's book was available for review!

"A Big Year for Lily (The Adventures of Lily Lapp)" by Mary Ann Kinsinger & Suzanne Woods Fisher is a fun and adorable read for little girls! Lily is a 9 year old who is part of an Amish family. Life on a farm is always fun for Lily, but she is not enjoying school like she usually does. This year in school, Lily has had quite a bit of trouble with mean girls and bullies. And there is a particular boy who loves to pick on her. But lucky for her, she has a Mama and a Papa who love her very much, and help her to navigate through these lessons.

I actually enjoyed reading this book quite a bit even though it is a children's book. Maybe that's because I loved reading the Little House on the Prairie series as a child, and this book reminded me of those. "A Big Year for Lily" will definitely be on my daughter's reading list for this school year. On Goodreads, it says that this book is aimed at 8-12 year old girls, but I think if you have a little one who loves to read, it could be read by a 6 or 7 year old. I would love to read the rest of the books in this lovely series!

I think little girls will love reading all about Lily and her best friend Hannah, and will be able to relate to a lot of the same things that Lily goes through. I rate this book as 5 stars!

*I received this book for free through Litfuse to give my honest unbiased opinion.*

Available July 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Anomaly by Kristen McGee

First of all, I was super excited when I saw this book was available for review! Science Fiction is definitely my favorite type of book, even if it is young adult fiction! This book reminds me so much of the Hunger Games trilogy yet it is still so different at the same time.

"Anomaly" is set in the future after the surface of the earth was destroyed by nuclear war. There were 10 remaining scientists alive at that time, who made a new world under the surface of the Earth and called it "The State". But the Scientists thought that our old ways of life were primitive. They learned they could create "humans" on their own and genetically alter their DNA so that the Scientists alone determined their strengths and weaknesses. They completely eliminated love, anger, and many other feelings and emotions that they deemed unnecessary. That is, until Thalli was created. Now the Scientists are dealing with an anomaly. She shouldn't be able to feel love, and to feel emotions but she does. Thalli has been hiding these "anomalies" for so long, it's just a matter of time before she is found out. But what will happen when she is exposed? Her dear friend, Asta was taken away for just a slight anomaly and was annihilated for something so unimportant.

Suddenly, Thalli finds herself in the midst of dozens of tests performed by one of the great ten, Dr. Loudin. Dr. Loudin's soul purpose for performing the tests however, is only to test new theories and to learn enough to create humans without anomalies. Thalli is scheduled for annihilation at the conclusion of these tests. But then Thalli learns that she has a friend on her side. Berk, who has grown up alongside Thalli, is training to become one of the great ten and therefore has access to Dr. Loudin. He tries to convince the scientists that Thalli is worth saving...that she is valuable to them as a group. But will it be enough to save her?

During all of this, Thalli meets John, who is the father of one of the great ten scientists and who survived the nuclear war. John is a Christian and opens Thalli's mind to the idea that she was created for a purpose, even if she may not know what that is. Throughout the rest of the book, we see Thalli's faith grow more and more.

I found that the beginning of this book was a little hard for me to get into, but after 3 or 4 chapters, it began to get more exciting. After awhile, I found it hard to put it down, eager to find out what was going to happen next! I think it would be great for a book discussion because of all of the different elements throughout the book. I loved that there was a distinct Christian message played throughout the story despite the fact that none of the characters were created to know God.

I rate this book as 5 stars and can't wait to read the second book in this series! Luminary will be available July 2014.

I received this book for free through Litfuse to give my honest unbiased opinion.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

"Chivalry" by Zach Hunter

"Chivalry: The Quest for a Personal Code of Honor in an Unjust World" by Zach Hunter is an excellent book for today's generation of young people. The Chivalry Zach Hunter is talking about is not your typical chivalry. This is not about holding doors open for women or even being a gentleman. It has more to do with what we as Christians can do to be chivalrous in an unjust and uncaring world. To be an honorable generation.

This book is divided into ten "codes" of honor that are based on some of the same codes of honor the knights followed back in previous generations. Hunter encourages readers to follow those codes which exhibit self control, honoring life, and more.

There is no study guide included in this book, but there is one available online. Also, I especially enjoyed the appendix at the back of the book which shares "How to's" to help implement the codes of honor you have just learned.

I would definitely recommend this book to others. I think it's a fantastic read for someone who is trying to find their place in this world, or even in their church. It would also be an excellent book to use for a Bible study or college age small group.

I rate this book as 4 stars. **I received this book for free from Tyndale to give my honest unbiased opinion.**

Monday, July 1, 2013

Small Town Girl by Ann H. Gabhart

This week I had the privilege of reading another book by Ann H. Gabhart! Small Town Girl goes right along with her first Rosy Corner book, Angel Sister. Although I have not yet read Angel Sister, this book was able to stand on it's own without having to read the previous book.

Small Town Girl is set in 1941, right when America was on the brink of war. Young men were being drafted left and right, and the future seemed so uncertain. Kate Merritt, the second of the four sisters, watches her oldest sister marry Mike, the man Kate has loved since she was just 15. But Mike barely knew she existed after setting eyes on her older sister, Evangeline. Everyone expects Kate to marry Carl, but is that what she really wants? Kate has grown up with him, but she doesn't love him and she can't see herself married to him.

But then Kate meets Jay Tanner, who just happens to be the best man in Mike and Evangeline's wedding. From that moment on, Kate can't forget about Jay. Mike says she shouldn't trust Jay because he's not good enough for her. He never stays in one place for too long, and Mike fears this time won't be any different. But will he stick around for Kate? Or will he be drafted into the war like the rest of the young men?

Ann H. Gabhart will pull you in from the very beginning of the story. This book is a sweet love story based on the historical events of the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the war. The story was both suspenseful and exciting, and at times made me wonder what was going to happen next! I have definitely become a fan of Ann H. Gabhart's work and will not hesitate to read more of her books!

I received this book for free from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group to give my honest unbiased opinion.

**Available July 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.**