Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Survivor by Shelley Shephard Gray

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Survivor
Avon Inspire; Original edition (August 30, 2011)
Shelley Shepard Gray


Shelley Shepard Gray is the beloved author of the Sisters of the Heart series, including Hidden, Wanted, and Forgiven. Before writing, she was a teacher in both Texas and Colorado. She now writes full time and lives in southern Ohio with her husband and two children. When not writing, Shelley volunteers at church, reads, and enjoys walking her miniature dachshund on her town's scenic bike trail.

Check out Shelley's Facebook Fan page


One of today’s most beloved authors of inspirational Christian fiction, Shelley Shepard Gray completes her acclaimed Families of Honor series with The Survivor—a poignant and beautiful story of love and faith in a small Amish community. Delving once more into the lives of these devout and fascinating folk, as she did in her popular Sisters of the Heart and Seasons of Sugarcreek novels, Gray tells the story of a young Amish woman who has survived the ravages of cancer, but now longs for the love of the one man who can heal her lonely heart. Like Beverly Lewis, Wanda Brunstetter, and Cindy Woodsmall, Shelley Shepard Gray introduces readers to characters they will never forget as she masterfully depicts a world of simple living, abiding faith, and honest emotions.

If you would like to read the first chapter excerpt of The Survivor, go HERE.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Society Bible

I rarely have an original or profound thought, but this thought has been on my mind for a while, so I thought I'd blog about it. You may not agree with me on all - or any of my examples, but they are my examples - and I am in no means equating all of them - they are all areas where even people outside of the church held a standard of belief on that changed, and then the church for the most part has followed along.

Where do we get our basis for right and wrong? If you are a Christian, you would say the Bible and/or God. But do we really? It seems even the most conservative among us depend on society for what is right and wrong. Oh, for a while the church will take a stand, but eventually the church and Christians tag along or cave in. What am I talking about? Glad you asked! Here are my examples - and there are plenty more, but here are a few:

1) Language. There was a day not all that long ago when people were bleeped on the radio and/or TV for saying certain words. That list has shortened to just a few, and a lot of stations allow it all. Now, we have Christians using the same words people used to be bleeped out on. One of my pet peeves is Christian authors and publishers allowing curse words in Christian books. Whoever said it was ok to do that? It was wrong and would have been a major issue even 10 years ago. Society became more accepting of cursing and the church is following along. I have had Christians defend curse words in Christian books - that is beyond my level of understanding.

2) Clothing. There was a day in America where only one type of women dressed in extremely revealing outfits. It was considered indecency to dress in certain ways. Pants were a man's clothing. Christians and non-Christians alike adhered to standards of modesty. A woman who wore pants was looked on like I would be if I walked down the street in a dress - well, even that is accepted by some.

Now, people wear less clothing than the average underwear. There is no difference between what men and women wear. You're looked on with scorn by even most Christians if you think women should dress like women and men like men, and that there should be a limit on how much skin is shown. So who changed that? Society changed. Women's lib came in. They said they wanted to dress like men, have men's jobs, have men's haircuts, and the church followed along.

(Not a popular belief, but yeah - I believe women should wear skirts. I have heard all of the arguments, but still believe that way. I am not saying anyone has to agree - this was just an example - and I am not saying you are not a Christian if you are a woman and wear pants - so don't go there!)

3) Abortion. There was a day when abortion was considered wrong and murder of a baby - which it still is. But, women's lib and society changed that. Now even some Christians defend the murder of innocent babies and it is considered normal and ok by millions of people.

4) Sundays. The Blue Law. It used to be upheld in the US. Businesses were not allowed to be open on Sundays. Even people who didn't go to church didn't do much on Sundays.

Now, even Christians do everything on Sundays. It is like any other day, other than getting a little but of church in the morning. You even have Christian businesses forcing employees to work on Sunday. (i.e. Family Christian Stores)

5) Sex. A lot can be said here. Sex used to be whispered about. Now, it is shouted and we are bombarded daily with images and filth. TV shows things that would have been banned when I was a kid. There was a day when it was scandalous to show a couple in the same bed, fully clothed - look at what we have now.

There was a day that homosexuality was considered wrong and not normal. And there is such a thing as homophobia and persecuting someone for being gay, but now.... that lifestyle is heralded as great and and normal. It is shoved down people's throats and has become a political issue and tool. Even churches and denominations are accepting and defending it. Did the Bible change? Did God change His mind? No. Society accepted it.

There have been societies and civilizations in the past - and in the modern day - that accepted pedophilia as normal. Cannibalism. And other things we still find wrong and deplorable.

But what if those things become accepted in America. Not possible? Oh I wouldn't say that. There is a move on by some to normalize pedophilia - call it "minor-attracted people." They want to take it out of the list of abnormal behaviors.

There is an organization called NAMBLA - North American Man-Boy Love Association. Yeah. They are actually allowed to exist. Free speech and all that. Thing is, morality is a slippery slope.

The day will very likely come in America when the elderly and handicapped will be euthanized. Not possible here? Oh yes it is. Even the most conservative among us have become desensitized to abortion. All it will take is for the right people to be in the right place at the right time and euthanasia will begin.

And we Christians keep marching along, slowly being desensitized into accepting and then practicing the very things we used to believe were wrong according to the Bible.

There was a day when we took the Bible at face value. If it said - or inferred - that something was wrong, we didn't do it. But now, the world has changed so much, it approves of things that no one approved of years ago, so we Christians have changed our beliefs and lifestyles to blend in more. We try to get around verses in the Bible. Make excuses. "That was meant for back then." "That was just meant for the Romans, or that one church Paul was writing to."

Is there any limit to what the world and society will accept and do that the church will not do the same? I would have thought homosexuality would be one of those limits, but more and more churches are accepting it and promoting it - so are there any limits?

Christ said we were to be in the world but not of the world, but is there any difference anymore? We dress like the world, look like the world, listen to the same music, watch the same stuff, talk like them...... where is the separation?

I asked a simple question on facebook a while back, and wow... I got attacked by Christians for it. So much for peace and love! I simply said I had noticed a lot of Christians seem to listen to far more secular music than Christian, and wondered why that was - but that is another example.

And yeah, appearances aren't everything, but has the church in trying to not be too in-your-face, and in trying not to appear intolerant or hateful, have allowed too much, have just been a few steps behind the world in how we live and what we accept? I fear it is so.

Do we have true standards and beliefs of what is right and wrong, or do they depend on society and the world? Do they depend on how desensitized we become, or how many of our family and friends change their ideas and beliefs, or even on our church? If that is all our belief system is built on, we will change and tag along with the world, our family and friends, and church when they all change their beliefs.

There is a great song the group 4Him recorded some years ago, The Basics of Life. That is what we need to do. Take out the Bible and block out what people say verses mean or do not mean and seek what God has to say about it.

Feel free to comment - but don't attack me for my views on one of the examples - I won't publish your comment if you aren't nice. :-) I have tried my best to get across in words what I have been thinking, and hope I did a half-decent job of it.

And in closing, if something was wrong yesterday, why is it ok today? Who gets to make that decision?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Thunder In the Morning Calm

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Thunder in the Morning Calm
Zondervan (August 2, 2011)
Don Brown


DON BROWN, a former U.S. Navy JAG Officer, is the author of Zondervan’s riveting NAVY JUSTICE SERIES, a dynamic storyline chronicling the life and adventures of JAG officer ZACK BREWER. After TREASON, his first novel in the NAVY JUSTICE SERIES, was published to rave reviews in 2005, drawing comparisons to the writing style of John Grisham, Don Brown was named as co-chairman of national I LOVE TO WRITE DAY, an event recognized by the governors of nine states to promote writing throughout the nation, and especially among the nation’s schools.

Paying no homage to political correctness, Don's writing style is described as “gripping,” casting an entertaining and educational spin on a wide-range of current issues, from radical Islamic infiltration of the military, to the explosive issue of gays in the military, to the modern day issues of presidential politics in the early 21st Century.

Don graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1982, and after finishing law school, continued his post-graduate studies through the Naval War College, earning the Navy’s nonresident certificate in International Law.

During his five years on active duty in the Navy, Don served in the Pentagon, was published in the Naval Law Review, and was also a recipient of the Navy Achievement Medal, the Navy Commendation Medal, and the National Defense Service Medal.


Lieutenant Commander 'Gunner' McCormick is assigned as an intelligence officer to Carrier Strike Force 10, being deployed to the Yellow Sea at the invitation of South Korea for joint exercises with the US Navy. During his pre-deployment briefing, he discovers a TOP-SECRET MEMO revealing rumors that the North Koreans may still be holding a handful of elderly Americans from the Korean War in secret prison camps.

As it happens, Gunner's grandfather, who was a young marine officer in the Korean War, disappeared at Chosin Reservoir over 60 years ago and is still listed as MIA in North Korea. Sworn to silence about what he has read, the top-secret memo eats at him. Gunner decides to spend all his inheritance and break every military regulation in the book to finance his own three-man commando squad on a suicide mission north of the DMZ to search for clues about the fate of his grandfather.

Risking his career, his fortune, and his life, Gunner will get his answers, or he will die trying.

Don Brown is building a loyal fan base by writing what he knows best: thrillers with heart. A former Navy JAG officer and action officer in the Pentagon, Brown pens action-packed plots and finely-drawn characters that are credible and compelling. Thunder in the Morning Calm is a novel of bravery, duty, and family love that will keep readers of all ages reading straight through to the last page.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Thunder in the Morning Calm , go HERE

My review:
I have read and enjoyed every one of Don Brown's books, so I was happy to see he had a new one coming out and even happier to see it on the CFBA September review list.

I honestly didn't know much about the Korean War before reading this book, and since the book centers around POWS from that war still being held in North Korea, there was enough information given in the book that I gained some understanding about that war and what it was about.

I loved the book. It was suspensful, exciting, realisitc and very interesting. Brown invented a few interesting characters and did a great job of describing the action and geographical locations. This was one of those books that I relaxed in the recliner with and pretty much stayed there until it was done.

There wasn't a lot of Christian content,  but other than "hell" being tossed around a few times, the book was clean and curse-free. This is more a book that men would enjoy with its military and suspense theme, but some women would enjoy it too. Highly recommended, as all of Don Brown's books are.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

When it comes to strong families that know how to truly enjoy life together, there is much we can learn from the Amish. Just how do they establish such strong family bonds, such deeply held values, and such wonderful family traditions? In Amish Values for Your Family, bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher shares the secrets of Amish family life. In this inspiring and practical book, you will meet real Amish families that are a lot like yours. Through their stories you'll discover how to:

slow down
safeguard family time
raise children who stand strong in their faith
prioritize what's truly important.

Amish values like community, forgiveness, simple living, obedience, and more can be your family legacy--without selling your car or changing your wardrobe.

My review:
My copy of this book was lost in the mail and still has not arrived, so I am just posting information about it and the author.

About the author:
Suzanne Woods Fisher is the bestselling author of The Choice, The Waiting, The Search, and A Lancaster County Christmas, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace. Her interest in the Anabaptist cultures can be directly traced to her grandfather, W. D. Benedict, who was raised in the Old Order German Baptist Brethren Church in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Benedict eventually became publisher of Christianity Today magazine. Suzanne is the host of an internet radio show called Amish Wisdom, and her work has appeared in many magazines. She lives in California.

Available August 2011 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Second Messiah by Glenn Meade

In the desert near Jerusalem, an archaeologist is murdered after he uncovers stunning evidence in a Dead Sea scroll about the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. The two-thousand-year-old parchment containing enigmatic references to not one but two messiahs is stolen before it can be fully translated.

In Rome, a charismatic American priest with long-hidden secrets is elected pope, setting off widespread panic among some of the faithful who question whether he is the anti-Christ or the world's new savior. As the conspiracy over the scroll explodes into a political and religious standoff, two people find themselves on the run, trying to stay one step ahead of unknown assassins in their search for truth.

Archaeologist Jack Cane and Israeli police inspector Lela Raul must solve the mystery of the Second Messiah and uncover the real secret behind the message of Jesus before they are permanently silenced and the scroll and its contents are forever lost to humanity.

My review:
I was hesitant to review this book, as I wasn't sure what direction the author, who usually writes secular fiction, would take. I decided to try it, and am glad I did. This was an excellent book, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Though it is close to 500 pages, coming in at 496 pages, I did indeed read this book in one evening, only taking restroom and drink breaks.

It has a terrific plot: a scroll is  found that refer to a second Messiah, and one who wasn't very good. There is a lot of action and international intrigue, as there are people trying to get a hold of the scroll for various reasons. The Catholic Church wants to bury it, others want to publish the contents. I found it to be a very exciting and interesting read, and could not put it down until I finished it.

There was one curse word. As my family puts it, one use of "King James Donkey." I would also classify this as religious fiction, as opposed to Christian fiction. Most of the plot is built around the Catholic Church, and the main characters don't seem to be Christians. Yet, it was a great book, and I am glad I had the opportunity to read and review it.

About the author:
GLENN MEADE was born in Finglas, Dublin in 1957. His novels to date have all been international bestsellers, translated into over twenty languages and have enjoyed both critical and commercial success. He worked in the field of pilot training for Aer Lingus for many years and as a journalist for the Irish Times. He now writes full time.

More about his books here.
Check out the website for the book here.
The Second Messiah is avaiable from Howard Books.
Thanks to the DeMoss Group for the review copy.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Dinner With A Perfect Stranger by David Gregory

You are Invited to a Dinner with Jesus of Nazareth

The mysterious envelope arrives on Nick Cominsky’s desk amid a stack of credit card applications and business-related junk mail. Although his seventy-hour workweek has already eaten into his limited family time, Nick can’t pass up the opportunity to see what kind of plot his colleagues have hatched…

The normally confident, cynical Nick soon finds himself thrown off-balance, drawn into an intriguing conversation with a baffling man who comfortably discusses everything from world religions to the existence of heaven and hell. And this man who calls himself Jesus also seems to know a disturbing amount about Nick’s personal life.

My review:
This is a short book, coming in at just 100 pages, so it was one I easily read in one sitting, but it is the type of book that you don't want to put down. The plot is great - someone being invited to dinner with Jesus, and the author did a great job of painting a word picture of what kind of conversation might occur in that setting.

This book wasn't suspenseful in the way suspense/mystery books are, but it did keep me turning the pages to keep up with the conversation as fast as I could read. This is a very unique book. Enjoyable and entertaining, but it also makes the reader think. I would recommend it for anyone to read - the Christian who is firm in their walk, the struggling Christian, and the non-Christian.

About the author:

DAVID GREGORY is the author of Dinner with a Perfect Stranger, A Day with a Perfect Stranger, The Next Level, The Last Christian, and the coauthor of the nonfiction The Rest of the Gospel. After a ten-year business career, he returned to school to study religion and communications, earning Master's degrees from Dallas Theological Seminary and the University of North Texas. A native of Texas, he now lives in the Pacific Northwest.

More about the book at

Dinner With a Perfect Stranger is available from Waterbrook/Multnomah Publishing.

Thanks to Waterbrook/Multnomah for the review copy.

Water's Edge by Robert Whitlow

Sometimes small towns hold the biggest secrets.

Ambitious young attorney Tom Crane is about to become a partner in a high-profile Atlanta law firm. But first he must clear one final matter from his docket—the closing of his deceased father's law practice in his hometown of Bethel, Georgia. Killed in a mysterious boating accident, John Crane didn't appear to leave his son anything except the hassle of wrapping up loose ends.

But instead of celebrating his promotion, Tom finds himself packing up his office, having suddenly been "consolidated." To add insult to injury, that same night his girlfriend breaks up with him . . . by letter.

Returning to Bethel with no sense of his future and no faith to fall back on, Tom just wants to settle his father's final affairs and get back to Atlanta. But then he runs into an unexpected roadblock—two million dollars of unclaimed money stashed in a secret bank account. And evidence that his father's death may not have been accidental. Worse still, a trail of data suggests his father played a role in an international fraud operation.

Tom follows the money into a tangled web of lies, theft, and betrayal. Along the way, he meets a woman who is as beguiling as she is beautiful. And her interest in the outcome of the case is just as high as his. She challenges Tom's assumptions . . . and his faith. Now he has to decide who he can trust—and how far a father's love can reach.

My review:
It has been a while since Robert Whitlow has written the legal thriller type of book that he began his writing career with, but this one is a lot more like those books than the last few he has written. That is what he writes best, so I was happy to see him write that style of book again.

This was one of those books I started and could not put down. I loved the plot, the main character, and Whitlow isn't afraid to write true Christian fiction. A lot of spiritual themes can be found in this book and no cursing, or anything close to it.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I can't think of anything I would have changed in it, and was sorry to see it end. It was a very gripping, suspenseful, and enjoyable read. One of Whitlow's better books for sure.

About the author:
Robert Whitlow is the best-selling author of legal novels set in the South and winner of the prestigious Christy Award for Contemporary Fiction. A Furman University graduate, Whitlow received his J.D. with honors from the University of Georgia School of Law where he served on the staff of the Georgia Law Review. A practicing attorney, Whitlow and his wife, Kathy, have four children. They make their home in North Carolina.

Water's Edge is available from Thomas Nelson Publishing.

Thanks to Thomas Nelson for the review copy.

Check the book out below.



Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Thomas Nelson contest

From Thomas Nelson:

One of the highlights of our days in the Fiction department at Thomas Nelson? Receiving reader letters—either directly addressed to us or passed along from our talented authors. It’s critical to be reminded that at the end of our long days acquiring, editing, designing, selling, marketing, and publicizing books, those stories are reaching readers, striking nerves, changing lives. We want readers’ feedback. How stories have given you hope. Which authors’ series you can’t help from sharing with everyone you meet. We want to know what makes you stay up late in the night to finish a story, and conversely what turns you away.

We’re conducting a series of surveys—seeking answers from readers who love Christian fiction. Up for grabs is a free ebook for every respondent who completes the survery, as well as a $10,000 prize for one entrant. The responses we gather will help shape the future of the books we publish for years to come. As well as the data we’re collecting here, we’ll also seek more in-depth feedback from a panel we’ll develop over the next year. More details to come. The note below from one of authors gives a specific picture of how reader feedback shapes her work. In short, your opinion matters! We thank you for your time and appreciate your responding.

--Thomas Nelson Fiction

Dear Friends—

Publishing books is a team effort, and there are a lot of players—authors, editors, cover designers, marketing staff, and a host of other behind-the-scene folks who help get the books on the shelves. And readers are also a large part of the process. Your input matters, probably more than you know.

When I hear from readers, I really listen to what they want. This is particularly true with my series books. For example, Seek Me With All Your Heart (book #1 in the Land of Canaan series) wraps up nicely at the end, but one of my minor characters (Katie Ann) was left pregnant after her husband left her. I received lots of emails about Katie Ann from readers, so book #2 in the series—The Wonder of Your Love—is Katie Ann’s story.

With the popularity of social media resources such as Facebook, it has allowed me to keep in close contact with readers and to seek opinions and advice. Several times, the publisher and I couldn’t decide on a cover, so we posted the cover options on Facebook and let readers decide. And if you’re posting anywhere on my Facebook Fans Page, your name could end up in a book. I often scan the names there, so you are unknowingly helping me just by being on the site.

Readers also made it clear that they wanted books in digital format, large print, and audio versions. Authors and publishers listened, and most (if not all) of my books are available in multiple formats.

As an author, I hope to write entertaining stories that will be enjoyed for many years. As a reader, I have favorite authors, and I’m not afraid to let them know what I want in future books. We listen to the likes and the dislikes in our effort to bring you the best stories we can, so don’t be shy. Tell us what you think!


Beth Wiseman

A River to Cross by Yvonne Harris

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
A River to Cross
Bethany House; Original edition (August 1, 2011)
Yvonne Harris


Yvonne Harris earned a BS in Education from the University of Hartford and has taught throughout New England and the mid-Atlantic. Unofficially retired from teaching, she teaches writing at Burlington County College in southern New Jersey, where she resides. She is a winner and three-time finalist for the Golden Heart, once for The Vigilante's Bride, which was her debut novel.


Texas Ranger Jake Nelson patrols the U.S.-Mexico border, protecting the settlers from cattle rustlers, outlaws, and bandits. Sparks fly when Manuel Diego stirs up a revolt against the government, which leads to the murder of a newspaperman, who is the son of a U.S. senator, and the kidnapping of his sister, Elizabeth Madison, a journalist in the making.

With Elizabeth's photograph in hand--a dark-haired beauty with smiling eyes--Jake rides over the border to find her. After the Rangers defeat the marauders and rescue Elizabeth, Jake is surprised to learn she's not the spoiled daughter of a senator that he was expecting. In fact, he finds himself taken by her. And she by him.

But the Mexicans won't give up that easily, as Elizabeth becomes the target of an all-out hunt. Leaving Elizabeth back at Fort Williams, Jake and his men set off again, this time to go after Diego himself--to apprehend him and his renegades and bring them all to justice.

Meanwhile, Jake knows what's begun between him and Elizabeth is undeniable. Amid all the turmoil, Jake finally admits how much he loves her. She tells him the same. Until now, they've lived in different worlds, yet it is those differences that drew them together.

If you would like to read the first chapter of A River to Cross, go HERE.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Home and Away by David and Nancy French - Giveaway provided

David French picked up the newspaper in the comfort of his penthouse in Philadelphia, and read about a soldier - father of two - who was wounded in Iraq. Immediately, he was stricken with a question: Why him and not me?

This is the story of what happens when a person - rather a family - answers the call to serve their nation. David was a 37-year-old father of two, a Harvard Law graduate and president of a free speech organization. In other words, he was used to pushing pencils, not toting M16s.

His wife Nancy was raising two children and writing from home. She was worrying about field trips and playdates, not about her husband going to war.

HOME AND AWAY chronicles not just a soldier at war, but a family at war - a husband in Iraq, a wife and children at home, greeting each day with hope and fear, facing the challenge with determination, tears, and more than a little joy.

My review:
This was an interesting book to review. It is written from two viewpoints: the wife left at home to raise two children alone while her husband goes off to fight in a war, and the late 30's husband going into the military to do his duty.

I was sent an email by the publicist to ask me to review the book. I tend to mostly review fiction, but this book sounded worth reading, so I agreed to review it. I'm glad I did. It is worth reading.

David and Nancy don't mince words or gloss over anything in this book. It is honest. They tell of the effect his decision had on them separately, on their children, and on their marriage. He tells of his fears, of what it was like to go through training, to land in Iraq for the first time, and of losing a friend in battle.

I came away from this book with a greater appreciation for our military, and also for the family they leave behind. The Frenches paint a great and true picture of a military family, and I enjoyed getting a glimpse into what they went through.

About the authors:

Nancy French grew up in Paris, Tennessee - home of the World's Biggest Fish Fry - but has since lived in Center City Philadelphia and the Gramercy area of Manhattan.

She began her writing career as a Philadelphia City Paper columnist tackling many subjects with a light, humorous touch; her articles have appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, The New York Sun, Newsmax, the Philadelphia Daily News, and National Review Online. An alumna of David Lipscomb University and New York University, Nancy now has moved back south, but this time to Columbia, Tennessee - the Mule Capital of the World - where she lives with her husband, writing collaborator, and co-conspirator David French, and their three children.

She is the author of the new book "Home and Away: A Story of Family in a Time of War" and "Red State of Mind: How a Catfish Queen Reject Became a Liberty Belle." Recently, she collaborated with Bristol Palin on her new memoir, "Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far."

Nancy is the editor of, a pop culture-focused magazine for parents, as well as a columnist and speaker.

David French is a Senior Counsel for the American Center for Law and Justice. A Kentucky native, David is a 1994 graduate (cum laude) of Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Massachusetts and a 1991 graduate (summa cum laude, valedictorian) of Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee.

David has been a commercial litigation partner for a large law firm, taught at Cornell Law School, served as president of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), and currently serves as a Senior Counsel at the American Center for Law and Justice.

He is the author of multiple books, including A Season for Justice: Defending the Rights of the Christian Home, Church, and School and the upcoming Home and Away: The Story of Family in a Time of War.

David is a regular contributor to National Review Online, a columnist for Patheos, and he has written numerous op-eds and articles, including pieces in the Washington Post, Washington Times, Human Events, Townhall, New York Post, New York Daily News, Boston Herald, and Philadelphia Daily News. Regularly interviewed by both print and broadcast media, David has appeared on ABC World News Tonight, The O'Reilly Factor, CNN Newsroom, The Fox Report with Shepard Smith, and Special Report with Brit Hume, among others. A regular guest on talk radio programs, David has been interviewed on National Public Radio and by numerous hosts, including Michael Medved, Hugh Hewitt, Laura Ingraham, Dennis Prager, James Dobson, and Michael Reagan.

David is also a Captain in the United States Army Reserve, joining the USAR in April, 2006. He completed Phase I of the Judge Advocate Officer Basic Course in June, 2006, and Phase II in April, 2007. He has also completed the Judge Advocate Tactical Staff Officer Course. He is currently a Trial Counsel for the 139th Legal Support Organization, Legal Command, in Nashville, Tennessee. From October 2007 to September 2008 CPT French served as Squadron Judge Advocate for the 2d Squadron, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment in Diyala Province, Iraq, where he was awarded the Bronze Star at the conclusion of his tour.

David and his wife Nancy have two daughters (ages 12 and 3) and a son (age 10). They live in Columbia, Tennessee.

Read an excerpt from the book here.

The publicist is giving away a copy of Home And Away on my blog. Just comment on this blog post/review to enter. I will pick a winner using on August 12.
Home and Away is available from Center Street Publishing.
Thanks to the Demoss Group for the review and giveaway copies.

Out of Control by Mary Connealy

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Out Of Control
Bethany House; Original edition (August 1, 2011)
Mary Connealy


Mary Connealy writes romantic comedy with cowboys. She is a Christy Award Finalist, a Carol Award Finalist and an IRCC Award finalist.

The Lassoed in Texas Series, Petticoat Ranch, Calico Canyon and Gingham Mountain. Petticoat Ranch was a Carol Award Finalist. Calico Canyon was a Christy Award Finalist and a Carol Award Finalist. These three books are now contained in one large volume called Lassoed in Texas Trilogy.

The Montana Marriages Series, Montana Rose, The Husband Tree and Wildflower Bride. Montana Rose was a Carol Award Finalist.

Cowboy Christmas—the 2010 Carol Award for Best Long Historical Romance, and an Inspirational Readers Choice Contest Finalist.

The Sophie's Daughters series. Doctor in Petticoats, Wrangler in Petticoats, Sharpshooter in Petticoats.

She is also the author of; Black Hills Blessing a 3-in-1 collection of sweet contemporary romances, Nosy in Nebraska, a 3-in-1 collection of cozy romantic mysteries and she's one of the three authors contributing to Alaska Brides with her Carol Award Winning historical romance Golden Days.


Julia Gilliland has always been interested in the natural world around her. She particularly enjoys her outings to the cavern near her father's homestead, where she explores for fossils and formations, and plans to write a book about her discoveries. The cave seems plenty safe--until the day a mysterious intruder steals the rope she uses to find her way out.

Rafe Kincaid has spent years keeping his family's cattle ranch going, all without help from his two younger brothers, who fled the ranch--and Rafe's controlling ways--as soon as they were able. He's haunted by one terrible day at the cave on a far-flung corner of the Kincaid property, a day that changed his life forever. Ready to put the past behind him, he plans to visit the cave one final time. He sure doesn't expect to find a young woman trapped in one of the tunnels--or to be forced to kiss her!

Rafe is more intrigued by Julia than any woman he's ever known, but how can he overlook her fascination with the cave he despises? And when his developing relationship with Julia threatens his chance at reconciliation with his brothers, will he be forced to choose between the family bonds that could restore his trust and the love that could heal his heart?

If you would like to read the first chapter of Out Of Control, go HERE.

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She just walked away

There is a young lady who has attended our church for some time, was even the church secretary for a while, and she did a great job of it. She hadn't been at church for a while, and we assumed she was going somewhere else, but wasn't sure. I considered her a friend, so I was wondering what was up. My sister commented on her facebook profile and said she had been missing her in church, so I commented likewise. She replied and thanked us, and said she had moved and was going to church closer her work. I replied and asked where she had moved to, and that we should have had a going away party. She didn't reply, so I went back a few days later to follow up, and she was gone - not just from my friends list, as I thought at first, but from facebook completely. I texted her a few times - nada.

I asked around on facebook, and no one knew anything. I messaged her best friend, who replied she had moved and was going elsewhere to church - uh, I knew that already, not very helpful. She also said this young lady doesn't text - at least that explained the no replies.

On Saturday, I decided to call the errant one. To be honest, it was a weird conversation. She seemed cool and evasive. She had moved and was going to church closer her job. (Yeah, I knew that already!) I don't do well with evasive tactics, so I asked where. She had moved to a small town very close to Salem, Ohio where our church is and where she had been living. How close? 7 miles. About 13 minutes. That is closer than I live to my church. I replied that I had assumed she moved far away.  I commented about her disappearing off the face of the earth - and facebook. Told her people are wondering what happened to her on there. She said she needs to finish her graduate work so will probably keep a low profile for a couple of years. The rest of the conversation was very stilted and awkward, she was trying to get off the phone, and I was taken aback. I ended with saying I wasn't trying to pry, but if I quit church and no one followed up, I'd feel badly.

I' still left with questions. Why did she leave so abruptly, and why does she need to cut off all of her friends? And why is the only person who she seems to be in contact with, the one person who isn't the best influence on her spiritually?

What are we to do when someone quits church abruptly? Should we call, email? If I quit, I'd feel badly if no one missed me enough to check up on me, yet by the cool reception I got from someone I thought was a friend, it evidently wasn't appreciated that I did just that.

The church is supposed to be a family - brothers and sisters and all that - though I'd like to trade in a lot of mine - so when someone walks away, shouldn't we care? Shouldn't we follow up? And to be blunt - if the one who walks away is truly a Christian, should their response be cool and stilted?