Personal Writings And Book Reviews

Beneath A Southern Sky February 26, 2010

Filed under: Heather's writings,reviews — novelized @ 10:24 pm


Beneath a Southern Sky by Deborah Raney 

 Daria Camfield is expecting her first child when her husband Nate is reported dead on the mission field. Devastated, she returns to the States and soon marries again. But two years later Nate is found alive in the jungle. How can Daria possibly choose between the two men who love her?

My Review:

Beneath A Southern Sky  had an interesting and emotional plot.  As a reader I tend to have a habit of immersing myself in the characters and placing myself in their shoes.  In this case it was a very hard place to be.  I struggled to read Beneath A Southern Sky because I just could not relate at all to the character’s mindset.  I not only disagreed with many of her choices and responses in this book, but felt downright angry at Daria Camfield/Hunter.  I felt that she was a character who didn’t really know herself.  She was led into things by the men in hr life and never really took control of her own identity.  I was frustrated and unable to truly get behind her as a reader.

I felt like the author was trying to steer me in a direction I didn’t really want to go.  If I believed the love of my life was dead only to find him alive I would not view it as a tragedy.  Daria’s decision to move on after Nate’s death was not my problem.  Love happens.  Often it comes unplanned, but at a time when it’s most needed. 

My issue was with her response upon hearing that Nate was alive.  Her choice to stay with Cole or return to Nate was immaterial, she saw his life as a tragedy.  I couldn’t understand that.  At the least she should have felt thankful for the miracle of his survival regardless of the obstacle or inconvenience it created for her personal life.  I just didn’t feel her compassion for Nate.  I also wasn’t pleased with the “romance” between Daria and Cole.  I just didn’t like him as a character at all.  He was mean, controlling, impatient with Daria’s daughter and just unlikable.  Cole also kept a very huge secret from Daria well into their marriage.  To me, that alone would have been a deal breaker.  I couldn’t root for them.

This is a well written book.  The author does have a talent with words, but I failed to get behind her direction in this story.  I thought her characterization was also a  little weak.  Bottom line, I didn’t enjoy this book.  It isn’t a story I’d place on my list of books to recommend.  In the future I will look at other books written by Deborah Raney because she can weave a story.  Beneath A Southern Sky just wasn’t the story for me. 

You can find out more about Beneath A Southern Sky here.


Love and War February 13, 2010

Filed under: Heather's writings,reviews,Uncategorized — novelized @ 12:52 am
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Together, John and Stasi Elridge wrote an honest and brave depiction of Marriage.  Love and War is a unique look at marriage from the perspectives of the husband and the wife.  The authors share with the reader the challenges of marriage that they faced and they cleverly use their experiences to tie in biblical truths.

John and Stasi teach readers how to discern that there is an enemy that strives to stop love in all its forms.  They explain how to handle differences and accept our styles of relating.  They encourage readers to know their spouse’s life story with the goal of better understanding their spouse’s personality and to help explain their spouse’s reactions.  They explain their path to healing hurts of the past and becoming vulnerable and open.  This healing task allows for a deeper relationship and makes room for our genuine honesty, where we are how God designed us and not the people we hoped to reshape.  Love and War tackles issues like expectations and the pressures that we place on our marriage.    Readers learn to fight for their marriage.  Yes it’s hard, but it’s worth it.

Love and War is a book you’ll want to read, think about, and discuss as a couple.  The transparency in Love and War is refreshing and insightful. 

Learn more about Love and War at the Waterbrook Multnomah website.

Happy reading!

This was book was provided for review by WaterBrook Multnomah.


the Voice New Testament February 1, 2010

Filed under: Heather's writings,reviews,Uncategorized — novelized @ 4:04 am

 The Voice New Testament is a new translation that uses  the careful input of biblical scholars and contributing writers.  Together they poured over the scriptures and created a translation that is modern in its readability without sacrificing the intelligence and literary richness of the Word of God.  The Voice New Testament includes devotional commentary and introductions to each book.

I began my review by reading Romans.  I was quickly hooked with the Voice translation.   The introduction was very well written and the flow of the book had a very personal feel without compromising God’s Word.  I usually read out of the New Living Translation because I have a hard time comprehending the King James Version.  To me, the Voice is a bit truer to traditional translations and I actually prefer it to the NLT.  This translation doesn’t dumb down the gospel or talk in slang.  It’s real and unforced.  It simplifies without doubting the reader’s intelligence.  I really enjoy reading this Bible. 

The Voice New Testament is printed in soft cover.  My copy had a huge flaw from the end of John to through Acts.  The typesetting is doubled and the pages were just too blurred to read.  Hopefully, not all copies were printed this way.  Flip through your copy before you buy and be sure.    

To find out more about the Voice visit Thomas Nelson.   

*As a member of BookSneeze, Thomas Nelson has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.  I am not paid for my review.  I offer my opinion freely and voluntarily.