Thursday, October 19, 2017

Everywhere You Go There's a Zacchaeus Up a Tree by Roger Campbell

Book description:

The wholesome, winsome wit and wisdom of columnist Roger Campbell

Every week for nearly forty years, Roger Campbell took up his pen to craft a newspaper column that would make a difference in the lives of his readers. His tales of fishing, family, friends, and fun helped them to trade their fears for faith, their sorrows for songs, and their doubts for certainties.

Everywhere You Go There's a Zacchaeus Up a Tree is an anthology edited by his son, drawn from these weekly columns. Based on Roger's experiences in the world at large, the pastorate, his community, and his family, these brief but wise essays are enriching, instructive, and gently challenging. Roger's habit of humbly talking with people from all walks of life wherever he went provided ample opportunity to impact generations of folks. His warm words still bear witness to the truth that God meets us where we are and uses us when we are willing.

Always starting with a Scripture reference, these short entries can be read as a daily or weekly devotion.

For those longing for a simpler time and the flavor of small-town life, Everywhere You Go There's a Zacchaeus Up a Tree shares a deep, abiding, homespun faith that knows, as Campbell wrote, that "God loves you no matter which way the wind blows."

My review:

  I was not familiar with Roger Campbell or his writings, but thought this sounded like an interesting book to review.... and I found that to be the case.

 It is a different kind of book that I normally read, but I found it an interesting, encouraging, and inspiring read. And it is the kind of book that you can read a section or two in a few minutes and go back to it later.

 The book covers a lot of topics, and the author has a unique and interesting way of writing that is easy to follow and easy to keep up with.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

About the author:

Roger Campbell (1930-2015) was in the ministry for over fifty years. He spent many years as a pastor, and in the late 1970's he launched Roger Campbell Ministries, an evangelical ministry through which he produced radio broadcasts, wrote weekly newspaper columns, and spoke at church Bible conferences. He is the author of nearly 30 books, including the acclaimed Preach for a Year series.

Everywhere You Go There's a Zacchaeus Up a Tree is available from Kregel Publishing.

Thanks to Kregel for the review copy.

Friday, October 13, 2017

The Teen's Guide to Social Media and Mobile Devices by Jonathan McKee

Book description:

Ever regret something you’ve posted?
Honestly? How smart are you being when it comes to streaming, messaging, gaming, commenting. . .?

 The Teen’s Guide to Social Media & Mobile Devices will help you navigate the digital world with 21 refreshingly honest and humorous tips that will not only inform, but that also just might change the way you think about your social media interaction.

     21 real-life tips including. . .
Know the app before you snap.
Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want Grandma, your boss, and Jesus seeing! (Jesus is on Insta, you know!)
Peek at your privacy settings. . .so you know who’s peeking at you.
Take more “selflessies.”
Press pause before you post.

. . .and many more will provide just the information you need to post wisely in an insecure world.

My review:

 This book was written for teens, but I believe you could drop "teens" from the title, as it would be a good book for adults too.....though some of the tips are definitely more for teens.

 The book is well written in a style that should hold a teenager's attention, especially with it being divided up into tips. McKee addresses online safety, how to deal with cruelty, being careful about pictures, and even things like not being so involved in your phone that you get hurt or killed because you were not paying attention.

 Social media is great, and the internet is a great and wonderful tool. However, it has its bad points and a dark side. Hopefully parents talk to their kids about these issues, but this book is a great tool to help discuss the dangers. I found it an interesting read, and the tips are right on and helpful. Definitely recommended.

 I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

 About the author:

Jonathan McKee is the author of over twenty books including the brand new IF I HAD A PARENTING DO OVER; 52 WAYS TO CONNECT WITH YOUR SMARTPHONE OBSESSED KID; and the Amazon "Best Seller," THE GUY'S GUIDE TO GOD, GIRLS AND THE PHONE IN YOUR POCKET. With over 20 years youth ministry experience, Jonathan speaks to parents and leaders worldwide. You can follow Jonathan on his blog at, getting a regular dose of youth culture and parenting help. Jonathan, his wife, Lori, and their three kids live in California.

The Teen's Guide to Social Media and Mobile Devices is available from Shiloh Run Press, an imprint of Barbour Books.

Thanks to Barbour for the review copy.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Ta'Mara Hanscom's 'The Pretender' Giveaway

Set in South Dakota in 1975, where eighteen-year-olds could order 3.2 beer in a bar, and loaded guns were kept under the counter.

Frankie Valli sang "My Eyes Adored You," and American soldiers returning from Vietnam struggled with their new reality.

It's within this tumultuous season of American history that Tillie Caselli meets Noah Hansen, and they are never the same again. Their lives were mysteriously intertwined-and had been for many years-yet they had no idea. 

From the moment they met, Tillie and Noah wanted to spend the rest of their lives together, but a deliberate omission will keep them apart---and that same omission will be responsible for the escape of a murderer, and a bride's deception.

Despite just meeting each other, Tillie and Noah's lives have been mysteriously intertwined for many years in Ta'Mara Hanscom's The Pretender. From the moment they met, Tillie and Noah wanted to spend the rest of their lives together, but a deliberate omission will keep them apart-and that same omission will be responsible for the escape of a murderer, and a bride's deception.

Join Ta'Mara in celebrating the release of the second printing and new covers by entering to win her $75 prize basket giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:
  • A copy of The Pretender
  • A $75 Amazon gift card
  • A decorative box containing measuring cups, ten recipes from the book, a potholder, a kitchen towel, pepper and salt grinders, kitchen utensils, and an olive oil dispenser

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on October 11. The winner will be announced October 12 on the Litfuse blog.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Jeremy Camp The Answer CD review and giveaway

CD description:

Over the course of 10 years and a dozen albums, Camp has helped listeners think through life's important questions. Now he's ready to help you discover "The Answer." Features the radio single "Word of Life"; along with "My Defender"; "Storm"; "My Father's Arms"; "Never Stopped Loving"; "Tell the Whole World"; "Heaven's Shore"; "Carriers"; "Love So Great"; and "Awake, O Sleeper."

Complete track listing:
1. Word Of Life
2. My Defender
3. The Answer
4. Storm
5. My Father's Arms
6. Never Stopped Loving
7. Tell The Whole World
8. Heaven's Shore
9. Carriers
10. Love So Great
11. Awake O Sleeper

My review:
 I don't listen to a lot of Christian Contemporary music, Southern Gospel being my favorite genre'. Jeremy Camp is one CCM artist I like and listen to. I haven't had this CD very long, but have been listening to it since I got it, and I like it. It has some great strong songs on it, and shows why Jeremy Camp has remained a top selling Christian artist during the 10 years he has been singing.

 Personal favorites:
Word of Life
The Answer
Love So Great

 Some artists' songs tend to sound alike, but I feel these songs are different from those he has recorded before. Camp has made another great CD, and it is worth listening to.

Thanks to FlyBy Promotions for the review and giveaway copies.


Simply comment on this review to be entered to win a copy of The Answer CD by Jeremy Camp. 10 days from today on October 15, I will pick a winner using

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Buy the CD here.

Social Corner:

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Portrait of Vengeance by Carrie Stuart Parks

Book Description

An unsolved case. A tempest of memories. The future’s at stake—and time is running out . . .

Gwen Marcey has done a good job keeping the pain of her past boxed up. But as she investigates the case of a missing child in Lapwai, Idaho, details keep surfacing that are eerily similar to her childhood traumas. She doesn’t believe in coincidences. So what’s going on here?

No one knows more about the impact of the past than the Nez Perce people of Lapwai. Gwen finds herself an unwelcome visitor to some, making her investigation even more difficult. The questions keep piling up, but answers are slow in coming—and the clock is ticking for a missing little girl. Meanwhile, Gwen’s ex-husband is threatening to take sole custody of their daughter.

As Gwen’s past and present collide, she’s in a desperate race for the truth. Because only truth will ensure she still has a future.

My review:

   I have enjoyed Carrie's books since I read her first one. Forensic artists fascinate me, and the fact that she is one in real life makes her novels all the more interesting and believable. In addition, her main character is far from perfect in more than one way, being a breast cancer survivor with prosthetic breasts..... you don't run onto that in many novels.

  All three books that precede this one have been great reads, but this one may be the best yet. I found it to be more suspenseful than the others, and it seemed more was going on in this book. Also in this book, the story is much more personal for the main character.

  This was not an easy book to figure out. The plot was intense and intricate, and the suspects abounded, made more difficult by events several years prior. This book kept me on the edge of my seat, and I found myself reading it as fast as I could. I enjoyed the book, and look forward to reading more by this author.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

About the author:

Carrie Stuart Parks is an award-winning fine artist and internationally known forensic artist. Along with her husband, Rick, she travels across the US and Canada teaching courses in forensic art to law enforcement as well as civilian participants. She has won numerous awards for career excellence. Carrie is a popular platform speaker, presenting a variety of topics from crime to creativity.

Check out her website.

Portrait of Vengeance is available from Thomas Nelson Publishing.

Thanks to Thomas Nelson for the review copy.

Check out Carrie's other books

This Life I Live by Rory Feek

Book description:

The story she said he was born to write.

Her story. His story. The love story of Joey and Rory.

By inviting so many into the final months of Joey’s life as she battled cancer, Joey and Rory Feek captured hearts around the world with how they handled the diagnosis; the inspiring, simple way they chose to live; and how they loved each other every step of the way. But there is far more to the story.

“My life is very ordinary,” says Rory. “On the surface, it is not very special. If you looked at it, day to day, it wouldn’t seem like much. But when you look at it in a bigger context—as part of a larger story—you start to see the magic that is on the pages of the book that is my life. And the more you look, the more you see. Or, at least, I do.”

In this vulnerable book, he takes us for the first time into his own challenging life story and what it was like growing up in rural America with little money and even less family stability.

This is the story of a man searching for meaning and security in a world that offered neither. And it’s the story of a man who finally gives it all to a power higher than himself and soon meets a young woman who will change his heart forever.

In This Life I Live, Rory Feek helps us not only to connect more fully to his and Joey’s story but also to our own journeys. He shows what can happen when we are fully open in life’s key moments, whether when meeting our life companion or tackling an unexpected tragedy. He also gives never-before-revealed details on their life together and what he calls “the long goodbye,” the blessing of being able to know that life is going to end and taking advantage of it. Rory shows how we are all actually there already and how we can learn to live that way every day.

A gifted man from nowhere and everywhere in search of something to believe in. A young woman from the Midwest with an angelic voice and deep roots that just needed a place to be planted. This is their story. Two hearts that found each other and touched millions of other hearts along the way.

My review:

  I didn't become familiar with Joey and Rory Feek until they made the news because she was dying of cancer. I watched the Facebook posts as she grew weaker and weaker and closer and closer to death. I felt sadness and prayed for those she left behind when she finally slipped the bonds of earth.

  I was interested to read their story, so I requested this book. It was an interesting, encouraging, and sad read. Rory tells of how he and Joey met, and of their marriage and music career, and of course about her fight with cancer. I found myself caught up in their story, and impressed by their unwavering faith as they faced the battle of cancer together. I found tears in my eyes many times, yet found myself wishing I had that kind of faith that they exhibited.

 The book is definitely worth reading, and I highly recommend it.

About the author:

A true renaissance man, Rory Feek is known as one of Nashville’s premiere songwriters, entrepreneurs and out-of-the-box thinkers.  He is a world class storyteller that crosses all creative mediums from music and film to books and the internet.

As a blogger, Rory shares his heart and story with the world through his blog that has over 2 million Facebook followers.  The love story of he and his wife, her recent battle and loss to cancer, and his vignettes of unwavering faith and hope in the face of tragedy inspires millions of readers who follow along with each post. 

As a songwriter, Rory’s written multiple number-one songs, including Blake Shelton’s “Some Beach”, Easton Corbin’s “A Little More Country Than That”, and Clay Walker’s “Chain of Love”, and had dozens of other songs he’s written recorded by Kenny Chesney, Randy Travis, Reba, Trisha Yearwood, Waylon Jennings, and many others.

As an artist, Rory is one-half of the Grammy nominated county-music duo Joey+Rory.  He and his wife Joey Martin toured the world, sold hundreds of thousands of records, and have their own weekly hit television show that airs all across the country on RFD-TV. Their latest album “Hymns That Are Important To Us” sold 70,000 copies the first week and debuted at number on Billboard album charts. 

As a filmmaker, Rory just finished directing his first feature-length film, “Josephine”, an epic love story set during the declining months of the Civil War, with a screenplay that he co-wrote with Aaron Carnahan.  Rory has three other screenplays in process.  He also writes, shoots and edits their music videos, and is the creator of the television shows and specials in which he and his wife appeared. 

He and his 2 year-old daughter Indiana live an hour south of Nashville in an 1870’s farmhouse near their family-owned diner, Marcy Jo’s Mealhouse.

Justice Buried, Memphis Cold Case #2 by Patricia Bradley

Book description:

  In an effort to get her security consulting business off the ground, Kelsey Allen has been spending a lot of time up in the air, rappelling down buildings and climbing through windows to show business owners their vulnerabilities to thieves. When she is hired to pose as a conservator at the Pink Palace Museum in order to test their security weaknesses after some artifacts go missing, she's ecstatic. But when her investigative focus turns from theft to murder, Kelsey knows she's out of her league--and possibly in the cross hairs. When blast-from-the-past Detective Brad Hollister is called in to investigate, Kelsey may find that he's the biggest security threat yet . . . to her heart.

  Crackling with romantic tension and laced with intrigue, this suspenseful story from award-winning author Patricia Bradley will keep you guessing--and looking over your shoulder.

My review:

  I first became acquainted with Patricia Bradley's writing when I read and reviewed her Logan Point Series. Those were her first trade paperback books she wrote, and I thoroughly enjoyed all four books in that series.

  If possible,  this series is even better. The idea of cold cases and the solving of them has intrigued me for quite some time, so I was happy to see a favorite author of mine tackle cold cases in a series. I reviewed the first book, Justice Delayed, and it got the series off to a great roaring start. Justice Buried does not disappoint, and is just as full of suspense, drama, and non stop action as the first book.

 Justice Buried brings back Sergeant Brad Hollister back for a more prominent role than he had in the first book, along with new characters and a new mystery. There was nothing to dislike in this book, and I had a difficult time setting the book down to do things that I needed to do besides reading.

 The plot was great, and it was not easy to figure out or see where it was going, and there were a few surprises that I definitely didn't see coming.

 The idea of trusting God played a part in the lives of the two characters, especially Kelsey as she tried to keep from getting killed from a person she had no clue to their identity.

 I read the book in two days, mostly on my work breaks, and loved every minute and page of it. I highly recommend both books in this series, along with Bradley's great Logan Point Series.

 I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

About the author:

Patricia Bradley is the author of Shadows of the Past, A Promise to Protect, Gone without a Trace, and Silence in the Dark. Bradley has been a finalist for the Genesis Award, winner of a Daphne du Maurier Award, and winner of a Touched by Love Award. Bradley is cofounder of Aiming for Healthy Families, Inc., and she is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Romance Writers of America. Bradley makes her home in Mississippi. Learn more at

Justice Buried, along with Justice Delayed and the Logan Point Series, is available from Revell Publishing, part of the Baker Publishing Group.

 Thanks to Revell for the review copy.

                                                      #1 in the Memphis Cold Case Series

Also check out the Logan Point Series