In Review... October 12, 2018

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From historical fiction to science fiction to contemporary romance and romantic suspense, we’ve got a little something for everyone!

Inspirational Historical Romance/Christmas
Michelle Griep
Series: Once Upon a Dickens Christmas #2

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Griep exquisitely weaves a Christmas tale that would make Dickens proud. Escape to Victorian England this Christmas season within the pages of this book. Two hearts have collided, yet with a relationship rife with deception, are there any chances left for forgiveness or love? The author beautifully draws the reader in with intriguing characters, subterfuge, mysterious pasts, and the hope of second chances. Woven into the theme is the distinct truth of God’s forgiveness of the past and the promises of the future. Readers are sure to lose themselves in this fantastic addition to Griep’s Once Upon a Dickens Christmas series. (SHILOH RUN PRESS, Sept., 192 pp., $12.99)

Reviewer: Rachel Dixon


Bookmarked Review

Inspirational Contemporary Romance
Kara Isaac

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Isaac blends an outlandish media situation with heartbreaking medical realities when two former flames are unexpectedly reunited on the set of a “Bachelor” style reality television show. Although sparks certainly fly between small-town rancher Caleb and world-renowned make-up artist Katriona, an intimate and vulnerable wall of blame and bitterness continues to stand firmly between them. Eyebrow-raising bloopers provide ample levity as the characters reexamine their dreams, seek forgiveness, and learn to engage in honest communication. Bravo to the author for shining a light on the helplessness and loneliness of incurable medical conditions. This story reminds readers that it’s possible to have it all and still miss out on what matters most. Glamour, fame, and travel don’t fulfill a heart’s desire for family, faith, and love. (BELLBIRD PRESS, Sep., 446 pp., $13.99)

Reviewer: Beth Erin


Inspirational Speculative Fiction
Jim O’Shea

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While his popular new age news program exploring unexplained phenomena such as UFOs and ghosts is sits at the top of the rankings, host Ryan Kates is skeptical. One whose strongest belief—that there is no God—is about to be tested to the breaking point. Through a handful of characters, Jim O’Shea sets up the ultimate end game as prophesied in Revelation. Combining religious and Biblical history, a dash of science, intense—sometimes frightening—moments, and a plethora of deceit, The Reluctant Disciple serves as an unforgettable reminder that the final battle for every soul draws nearer. (AMBASSADOR INTERNATIONAL, Oct., 308 pp., $15.99)

Reviewer: Suzie Waltner


Inspirational Historical Fiction/Mystery
Sandra Byrd
Series: The Victorian Ladies #1

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Treasure, mystery, and romance are exquisitely intertwined in this Victorian Era story. Between the heart-pounding drama and the heart-stopping kisses, readers will lose themselves in this world of antiquities and love. See the beauty of trust and honesty played out on each page, and learn a lot of real history as well. Byrd allows the characters to tell their stories and readers to be swept into a different age. Any fan of Victorian fiction is sure to fall in love with this one. (TYNDALE, Oct., 464 pp., $15.99)

Reviewer: Rachel Dixon


All people want to believe what they wish to believe, but we must all eventually look to believe the truth, whether or not that’s what we wished.
— Lady of a Thousand Treasures

Inspirational Romantic Suspense
Irene Hannon

Series: Code of Honor #2

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Irene Hannon’s romantic suspense is a balanced blend of heartwarming attraction, page-turning suspense, and pulse pounding climax. Readers will be inspired by the heroine’s warm, confident, and compassionate personality. Through her volunteer work with a children’s theater and the operation of her missions-funding fair-trade boutique, Kristen Dane is making a positive impact on the world. Although Detective Luke Carter is new to town and still processing his personal grief, he doesn’t deny the future possibilities a certain mutual attraction presents. His ability to focus on the case Kristen is indirectly involved in while keeping their relationship at a professional level requires an admirable level of integrity and self control. The hero is attractive, intelligent, and a modern-day knight in shining armor. While events surrounding the case seem to spiral out of control, the story reminds readers of the importance of solid faith and positive relationships. (REVELL, Oct., 416 pp., $15.99)

Reviewer: Beth Erin


Inspirational Romantic Suspense
Janice Cantore
Series: The Line of Duty #2

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Written by a former law enforcement officer, the second installment of The Line of Duty series delivers suspense with a great dose of authenticity that seems all too real at times. With tensions in Rogue Hollow on the rise over the legalization of marijuana, police chief Tess O’Rourke has quite the battle to overcome, both professionally and personally.  When a recent murder seems to be tied in with the local drug supply chain, the chief will need all the help she can get, even if that means delving into her struggle with her faith. With believable characters leading the charge to a suspenseful plot that keeps you guessing, and the thoughtful inspirational message of grace and truth interwoven throughout, Lethal Target will leave you entertained and encouraged. (TYNDALE HOUSE, Oct., 416 pp., $14.99)

Reviewer: Annie Sturt


Inspirational Contemporary Romance
Lee Tobin McClain
Series: Redemption Ranch #2

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Lily Watkins has an ulterior motive for becoming acquainted with Carson Blair and his daughters, but the secret she holds requires she keep this family at arms-length. A feat that grows more difficult as she spends time with two little girls, their father, and a wise veteran residing at her aunt’s Colorado ranch. Like Lily, readers will be drawn by two these adorable six-year-old sisters with big, but different, personalities and an even bigger Christmas wish. McClain combines the laughter, warmth, and togetherness of the holidays to the forefront with a stark reminder that the season isn’t joyous for everyone. In so doing, she skillfully draws readers into this heartwarming Christmas story, inviting them to sit at the table with characters who feel like long-lost friends and family. (LOVE INSPIRED, Nov., 224 pp., $5.99)

Reviewer: Suzie Waltner


Inspirational Contemporary Romance
Patricia Lee
Series: Mended Hearts #3

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Grief over his wife's death drove Monty, a marine scientist, to relocate with his eight-year-old twins. His children struggle with their own pain and are referred to Claire, a learning specialist who struggles with a heartache of her own. As the two adults work together to help the children, they discover healing for themselves and their hearts begin to soar. With endearing characters and a compelling plot, this story of restored hearts and love is a touching and inspirational addition to the Mended Hearts series by this author. (MOUNTAIN BROOK INK, Oct., 303 pp., $13.99)

Reviewer: Phyllis Helton


Gold Star Reviews are for those books that are just truly in a class by themselves. Given rarely.

Bookmarked Reviews are for those books you'll definitely want to put on your 'keepers' shelf! Given sparingly.