The first book in this Striking a Match Series Embers of Love was a good Tracie Peterson read. It was a different narrative voice than what I am used...moreThe first book in this Striking a Match Series Embers of Love was a good Tracie Peterson read. It was a different narrative voice than what I am used to with her but I take that with it being in Texas as opposed to Montana, Pennsylvania or Alaska. However this second book in the series Hearts Aglow is purely dreadful. I do not read Tracie Peterson's contemporary novels because every one that I have tried was pathetically depressing such as A Slender Thread. The last series that I read from her was a historical and most of the books were fine, but the last one was just bad in Twilight's Serenade. Yet I am not certain, but I do believe this book may have been worse.
First off, you definitely cannot read this book without the lead up of reading Embers of Love first. Starts off very fast paced and horribly sad. Depressed very much on the issues and problems of slavery as a topic in depth. I hope it gets "happier". The reading in order is not a problem, but starting a book so deep and heavy is... By about page 63 I was having a hard time with this one. There is about 90% depressing material with about less than 10% romantic and happy. Around 100 pages in, I was not sure if I could finish it and said I am so bored and frustrated with this novel. Nothing is drawing me in and it is just sad and depressing. I do like the new character of the preacher's daughter but I am not sure if even she will convince me to finish this one.
Honestly my last statement about this book is that if you enjoy racial hatred, mean spirited revenge, devastating natural disasters, domestic cruelty, outright depression and broken hearts then by all means read this book immediately.
With all that said, I love most all of Tracie's older historical series and will not hesitate to continue to buy her books. There is bound to be a book here and there that I do not enjoy, but that doesn't make up for missing out on all the others that I love.
*Thanks to Bethany House for providing a copy for review through the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance.*
In novel form the only real introspective I have had into the life of Jacob was through one of my favorite author Liz Curtis Higgs' retelling of the B...moreIn novel form the only real introspective I have had into the life of Jacob was through one of my favorite author Liz Curtis Higgs' retelling of the Biblical story of Jacob and his wives in a latter day Scotland tale in her Lowlands of Scotland series. The personality of the Jacob (Jamie) I knew there and the one I was first introduced to briefly in Love Amid the Ashes had me taken aback. But then none of us really know who or how he was as a person and we can only make assumptions due to the historical circumstances that surround parts of his life of which we are familiar. Putting that aside, I was quite taken in by both Dinah and Job in this story. Dinah once again is a Biblical character that I came to know through Liz Curtis Higgs' series (as Davina) I mentioned before in a fourth and later generation novel. I had not actually know the woman of the Bible before and from her I went into further question of who are these women and what can I learn from them.
As for my experience with Job. This is the one book that with a friend before school every Tuesday and Thursday morning we met in my car and read together through the entire book of Job word for word comparing our translations. I must tell you in that moment not only did I know a kindred spirit in my friend, but I also learned a great deal about "lovingkindness" that changed my life and perspective on God. So with having all this in my mind I was eager to step into the lives of Dinah and Job and see how things were on the front lines during some very hard times in their lives presented to us (readers) with the best of intentions through research and the imaginative mind of new to page author Mesu Andrews. (Plus there is the whole fact that my maiden name is Andrews and of course that helps.)
For one, this book starts with an absolutely gorgeous cover that really draws in your curiosity about this woman. Who is she? What was her life like? When as Christians we can find Biblical retellings that give us a bit of inspiration to imagine what the life of such a person might have been like at a certain point in time it makes it easier to realize that they indeed are/were real people that lived lives full of lessons so that we might learn from their mistakes.
I'm enthralled and look forward to Mesu's next book said to be in March 2012 about King Solomon.
*Thanks to author Mesu Andrews and Revell Books for providing a copy for review.*
It was in 2003 or shortly before when I first discovered both Christian Historical Fiction and more specifically the writing from the creative mind of...moreIt was in 2003 or shortly before when I first discovered both Christian Historical Fiction and more specifically the writing from the creative mind of Liz Curtis Higgs in her first Scottish Lowlands Series. I impatiently waited and snatched up each book that came next including the later generation novel on Dinah. It enthralled and entertained me as no other to find Biblical stories retold in Scotland.
I was then beyond ecstatic to learn of a new saga to come from 18th century Scottish Lowlands retelling the Biblical story of Naomi and Ruth. It was with some enjoyment that I read the first book in the saga Here Burns My Candle. Yet it was also a sad and hard book to read.
The time in between waiting for the next novel was torture and thus I turned to other authors to bide my time and hence my current obsession with so many authors and stories today. It seems that it has been a long time in waiting for a new novel from Liz and I was eager to grab this one up. In starting this story, a retelling in Scotland’s Edinburgh of the Biblical story of Ruth and Naomi I had some preconceptions for what would happen and was shocked at how slow things seemed to transpire at first, but the story did pick up and sucked me in with it.
Lady Elisabeth Kerr is a Highlander by birth and a Lowlander by marriage it is her story and that of her mother-in-law Lady Marjory Kerr in which the pages are brought to life. Following along as they watch from the recessed side lines of battle between King George of England and Scotland’s own Bonny Prince Charlie causes quite a stir of emotions. Learning with them through their own trials as some old ways are forgotten and God makes a difference in their lives is refreshing and eye opening showing his presence in the best of moments and well as the worst.
Knowing that this story was loosely of Ruth and knowing most of the Biblical story by heart, I ended at a point surprised having expected a different part. This just went to show me that I did not know all of the story, just the last part and causes me to have a newly increased thirst to go back and read the scriptures in full to delve into the first eighteen verses which it seems I hardly know at all.
Upon starting the second in Mine is the Night I was unsure what to expect. In the end what I found was my favorite story written by Liz thus far and I am completely impatient and whole heartedly eager for more!
***Special thanks to Cindy Brovsky of Random House Inc. for sending me a review copy.***
This is a sequel to Thicker Than Blood, but can be read as a stand alone quite easily as well. If you know me, you know that Christian Historical Fict...moreThis is a sequel to Thicker Than Blood, but can be read as a stand alone quite easily as well. If you know me, you know that Christian Historical Fiction is my genre, and I do not usually get into contemporary novels. They just contain too much real life for my taste. Yet sometimes there are authors that just snag me and I have to make an exception. Especially in the realm of Suspense for authors like Kristen Heitzmann and C.J. Darlington. (I'm not talking about my adventure books here, that's a whole 'nother entity and I love those!)
While reading this, I still hold to my first statement about Thicker Than Blood:
Nitty gritty honest truth under your skin, but you have to turn to the page and find out what happens next.
Roxi's life is rough and at the beginning I just wanted to scream knowing Christy's past from the first book that she could tell her and it would all be okay. But then things happen and it will never really be okay again. Abby seems to have had one thing after another and it's baffling how strong these women are and that they can keep going. It felt to me that the ray of light from the first book was gone (as in a male character named Hunter), but just like how God works in everyday lives there are other instances and people put in position to show you his love. Inspiration for getting up the next day and moving forward with your life.
I'm pleased to have discovered the stories from C.J. and look forward to more in the future.
*Thanks to author C.J. Darlington and TitleTrakk.com for providing a copy for review.*