Monday, September 6, 2010

Blog Tour Challenge Update

I am now officially 3 days over on my challenge because it took 2 extra days to read Fields of Grace.  I will soon begin reading The Carousel Painter.  Keep checking in!!

Fields of Grace by Kim Vogel Sawyer

Fields of Grace broke my heart many times, but I found the book to be one that compelled me to want to keep reading anyway.  I thought that Lillian and her family were hardworking, God-loving people who weren't afraid to get their hands dirty to accomplish something great.  Having chosen to leave their home in Russia, Lillian, her husband, her three sons, and her husband's foster brother venture to America.  The decision is made out of a desire to not have Henrik (who will turn 18 soon) be forced to serve in the military.  Being Mennonite, they don't agree with fighting, etc.  What ensues after they leave Russia is not an easy ride across the ocean and a path paved with all the dreams that were hoped for.  Instead, many sad events occur which cause many changes in the characters in Sawyer's story.  I found the story to be heavy in many places, but overall it was an interesting historical novel.  The year is 1872 when the book opens; a year we can only dream about and try to imagine.  Sawyer paints a picture of the journey of this family in that time that is very different than many historical novels I have read.  She is an enjoyable read, if you like something a little more substantial.

This book was provided for review by Bethany House Publishers.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Wildflowers by Robin Jones Gunn

Wow!  I've read this book before and enjoyed it then, but I think I understood and appreciated it more now that I'm married.  This book follows Gena.  She has been married over 20 years and has 3 daughters with her husband.  They are in a committed marriage, but for Gena things have changed over time.  She has lost the love she once had for her husband and the desire to commune with God as well.  During this story, Gena comes to realize many things about herself, God, and her husband.  Only having been married almost 5 1/2 years myself, I can't relate entirely to Gena's struggles.  However, I certainly can relate to some parts of her story, and I think many readers will be able to do the same.  I found the story to be very real in many respects and found some eye-opening truths in the pages as well.  The only sadness for me in reading Wildflowers is that it's the last book in Gunn's Glenbrooke Series.  When you've been a fan of Christy Miller, Glenbrooke, and Sierra Jensen as long as I have, sometimes it can be difficult to close that last book and have to let the characters go until the next time.  Other than that, I really enjoyed rereading this wonderful story of refreshing, reawakening, and rebirth.  It is a great story about marriage, friendship, and family.  I hope you'll take the time to read Wildflowers.  To do it right, I recommend starting with book one in The Glenbrooke Series - Secrets - and then continuing on through the series until you reach the end - Wildflowers, book eight.