Free and bargains books April 15, 2021

BookBub has a FREE suggestion for us today. This appeared in a collection awhile back so I’ve read and enjoyed it.

A Single Spark: A Christian Contemporary Romance (The Spark Brothers Book 1)

Amazon quote:

A pop singer running from his past. A deejay who’s given up on men. And the wrong number text that sparks disaster and romance.

Former boy band hottie, Aiden Spark, distanced himself from everything he valued—faith, family, and fame—when he lost his girlfriend. A decade later, he’s still hiding behind his grief when he accidentally texts a woman who’s all too curious about his identity.

Burned by the men in her life, deejay Abby Dearan has chosen to focus on her newfound faith in God and use her radio presence for good. Her plans are thwarted though when a text message—and the irritating man who sent it—won’t leave her in peace.

Aiden can’t forget the woman who reminds him so much of his first love; Abby can’t remember the last time a man made her feel so beautiful. To make matters worse, it’s impossible to avoid one another when their siblings and friends—not to mention, divine intervention—keep pushing them together. Will the sparks igniting between them end up in flames or romance?

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BookBub also has a bargain suggestion. Again, it’s one I’ve read but you may enjoy it too.

Hope Eternal Ranch Romance: Three Sweet Contemporary Western Romances

Amazon quote:

Hopeful Cowboy: He’s struggling to step into his new role as a single dad. She’s trying to keep her ranch operational and her heart intact. Can Nate and Ginger build forever out of heartache?

Overprotective Cowboy: Can Ted and Emma face their pasts so they can truly be ready to step into the future together? Or will everything between them fall apart once the truth comes out?

Rugged Cowboy: He’s a cowboy mechanic with two kids and an ex-wife on the run. She connects better to horses than humans. Can Dallas and Jess find their way to each other at Hope Eternal Ranch?

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Currently I’m reading a book I have reason to hurry through. I may start jumping chapters soon. I find it predictable. It’s still a bargain, maybe you will like it better than I do?

All of You, Always (Walker Beach Romance Book 1)

Going undercover is Bella’s only hope.

Her mission?

Convince Ben to sell his inn, and she’ll get the information needed to locate the family she’s never known.

Should be simple, right? After all, he’s behind on his mortgage, and a recent earthquake has rocked the town—and his finances. His beachfront property is ripe for the picking.

But the big-city executive didn’t count on him being so stubborn. So rooted in family and tradition and everything that small-town America stands for.

She also didn’t count on him being so attractive and wounded and … good.

And Bella has to wonder if the ends really justify the means.

But more than that—can love survive a lie?

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That’s all I have for today.

Happy Reading

P.S. Actually, for today I’m glad I’ve read these books. It means my TBR pile has not grown any bigger. (big sigh of relief lol)

How do I do it?

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

A commenter, Sheri Dye from ReadBetwixtWords , after my last post with read and enjoyed asks “You read all of these? In April?.. I’m so jealous! 😂”

The answer popping into my head would be much too long for the comment box so I promised a post.

Normally I would read while eating my breakfast but this subject was much too engaging. Every second was spent thinking of all the things I wanted to say in reply.

So, how do I do it? Well, it’s complicated but not a bad thing. I have to say that because my first response to the question puts a big smile on my face, I think it’s pretty funny and I LOVE reading. When I think about it from the listener’s perspective, though, it sounds pathetic.

I am, for the most part, happy with my life. Even if I could do things differently I probably wouldn’t.

There are two major contributing factors to my lifestyle. I’m an introvert and I’m a survivor with hermit tendencies. Translated that means I have major trust issues. Home is safe so I stay home. A lot. I venture out several times a month, maybe. It’s covid, where would I go anyway? lol To be honest, life looks about the same for me now as it did pre-covid. Really, there’s nothing new to see here.

So, we’ve established, I have no life and it’s just me. My life can be ordered however I like and if I choose reading over housework no one complains.

On the realistic side though, I do still have a job and I’m grateful. It adds purpose to my life and gives me contact with the outside world, limited though it may be. I work remotely and spend all of my working time online.

Aside from my job and must-do things to keep myself alive and comfortable, I can do pretty much whatever I want.

So, how do I read so many books?

First of all, no TV. I didn’t watch it anyway and let the subscription go.

I read every second I’m not compelled to be doing something else. I’m addicted, what can I say.

On average I read a book a day. Some don’t really take all that long. For others I’ve developed some habits and learned some tricks.

I try to keep moving. It’s easy to drop back to a stroll when it should be a quick-step. If a book turns out to be the one where every word needs to be read, I give it the respect it deserves and slow down to savor the experience. Not many books are like that though.

Then there are the choices of speed reading or skimming.

Speed reading, I try but don’t use it much as it’s not often that I need to remember everything I’ve just read.

Skimming, I let my eyes quickly run down the middle of the page and at the bottom ask myself “Did I miss anything important?” If no then I keep going like that until a page shows up that deserves a closer look. Practice makes this an effective tool.

There are some things I flat out do not read.

Detailed descriptions of all kinds. What people are wearing. Surroundings. Some scenes between characters. Now and then a description sets the stage for future actions but mostly they do not. It takes more effort than I care to give for me to visualize whatever it is.

I avoid thought patterns and conversations. Sometimes the story is fixated on internal struggles and the same narrative happens over and over. Not worth my time to read it over and over.

Hop, skipping, jumping.

If the story moves slowly, I’ll skip paragraphs, pages and finally chapters. I’ll hop ahead a chapter, or two or three, at a time, stopping long enough to see what’s happening. Not much? Move on. Something? Stay awhile. If things are really bad I’ll jump to the last chapter or two where there is generally a story summary.

I love to read slowly and savor a book, if it deserves that kind of treatment. Honestly, most often they do not. There’s nothing wrong with giving it time if that’s what you want and at the same time, there’s nothing wrong with hurrying on through.

To read a book a day, I have to remind myself I don’t have time to sit and chat, I have to keep moving.

In a way this has become like a job to me. If I want to have something to say on this blog everyday I have to put in the time. If I download books and want to know about authors I’ve not read I have to find ways to keep up.

To summarize, if you want to read like I do: have no life and do not read every word.

It’s not perfect by any means but I love my life.

So, that’s how I do it!

And that picture? Totally me, sitting at my table for hours on end 🙂

Read and enjoyed middle of April 2021

It’s time to clear out some of the backlog of finished reads, once again.

This first one was a fun read. Definitely a different twist on a romance story. Autumn MacArthur does come up with well crafted stories regularly, always worth reading.

Forget Paris: Sweet and clean Valentine’s Day Christian romance in Paris and London with an anti-romance heroine! (Love In Store Book 5) 

Zoe’s determined to prove that romance is an illusion and love based on it doesn’t last. Though when she meets Gabe Ross, there to fulfil his mother’s dying wish by placing a lovelock on a bridge for her and his father, even she finds it hard to resist the most romantic city in the world on the most romantic day of the year.

An impulsive challenge to try a psychological experiment isn’t part of her research plan.

Especially when it feels like more, much more, for both of them.

Zoe tells herself their one wonderful day together proves nothing, only gives more evidence her theory is right.

But on her return to London, she discovers she needs Gabe’s help to learn the biggest lesson of all, that love does last.

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I really liked this next story too. It held my attention, was believable and was a story worth reading. It didn’t feel like any other story I’d read and that’s a very good thing.

Run With My Heart: Sweet, Christian Christmas Romance: (A Texas Tornadoes Single Author Sports Romance book 2) (Texas Tornados)

Pro football player Tucker Jackson has a chip on his shoulder. His mother died when he was young, his father threw himself into his work, and the team he now plays for is in danger of losing their season.

His anger drives him to a bar where an ensuing fight earns him service at a community center. Can he find a way to tame his ire before it destroys his dreams forever?

Shelby Doll has a heart for kids, but the community center she runs is short on funds. Tucker Jackson is her last hope to keep the doors open, but will he leave her in a lurch when it matters the most?

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This next one is about the life of a young Jewish woman from the Bronx who found herself with a singing career back in the hippie days of the seventies, the child of Holocaust survivors.

Eventually she married into a bluegrass family and music became a lifelong way of life for her and her family.

Life is always affected by dramatic experiences of all family members and Lily’s was no different. She shares both the good and the painful, but mostly the good.

I enjoyed this book even more because I have closely followed her family’s career or the last decade or two.

You Don’t Cry Out Loud: The Lily Isaacs Story 

An unforgettable autobiography of Lily Isaac, the daughter of Holocaust survivors who rejected her Jewish heritage for a life with Jesus Christ and a music career.

Throughout her music and that of her children, who together form the beloved and multi-award winning group The Isaacs, you hear the resonating inspirational legacy of this family’s faith. Fans struggle to put the book down and are captivated by:

  • An autobiographical look at Lily’s life, from being a Jewish folk singer to serving as vocalist and matriarch of The Isaacs
  • The powerful account of her struggle with a once unknown faith and how she finally “cried her way to God from the church’s back pew”
  • The incredible insights behind heartbreaking moments which were her greatest opportunities of faith.

Whether surviving breast cancer or a challenging career, Lily’s steady refrain has been one of God’s constant love, comfort, and strength. Her story of survival is raw and compelling. It will inspire your Christian faith and help to put your own personal struggles in perspective.

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Now for a bunch that were read and enjoyed. It will be a just glimpse to fit them all it.

There’s more but I think this is enough for today.

Happy reading y’all

Bargain books April 14, 2021

We have books. I am so excited. It’s been feeling like a long dry spell. I know it’s not really been that long but to me a day or two feels loooong. I start to go through book withdrawal.

So, first, on the lighter side, BookBub has a suggestion for us. This author is new to me. The first page starts out well so I’m going to take a chance.

All of You, Always (Walker Beach Romance Book 1)

Amazon quote:

Going undercover is Bella’s only hope.

Her mission?

Convince Ben to sell his inn, and she’ll get the information needed to locate the family she’s never known.

Should be simple, right? After all, he’s behind on his mortgage, and a recent earthquake has rocked the town—and his finances. His beachfront property is ripe for the picking.

But the big-city executive didn’t count on him being so stubborn. So rooted in family and tradition and everything that small-town America stands for.

She also didn’t count on him being so attractive and wounded and … good.

And Bella has to wonder if the ends really justify the means.

But more than that—can love survive a lie?

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Next, 1531 Entertainment has a suggestion. Colleen Coble is right up there near the top of my favorites list, I never pass up the chance for one of her books.

Strands of Truth

Amazon quote:

Suspense, romance, and generational secrets meld when a DNA test helps Harper Taylor locate the family she’s always longed for . . . but has it also put her in the crosshairs of a killer? 

Harper Taylor is used to being alone—after all, she grew up in one foster home after another. Oliver Jackson finally took her under his wing when she was a runaway teenager, and now Harper pours her marine biology knowledge into Oliver’s pen shell research. But she’s never stopped wishing for a family of her own.

When a DNA test reveals a half-sister living just two hours away, Harper is both hopeful and nervous. Over warm cinnamon rolls, Harper and Annabelle find striking similarities in their stories. Is it just a coincidence that both their mothers died tragically, without revealing Harper and Annabelle’s father’s name? 

Oliver’s son Ridge still sees Harper as a troubled teen even all these years later. But when Oliver is attacked, Ridge and Harper find themselves working together to uncover dangerous secrets that threaten to destroy them all. They must unravel her past before they can have any hope for the future. 

Strands of Harper Taylor’s childhood are resurfacing—but will the truth save her . . . or pull her under? Suspense, romance, and generational secrets meld in this engrossing new novel from USA

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Another favorite author. That may be a bit of an understatement since there are 34 Christy Barritt books in my downloads library.

Rocco: a clean romantic suspense novel (Lantern Beach Blackout: The New Recruits Book 1)

Amazon quote:

Former Navy SEAL and new Blackout recruit Rocco Foster is on a simple in and out mission. But the operation turns complicated when an unsuspecting woman wanders into the line of fire.

Peyton Ellison’s life mission is to sprinkle happiness on those around her. When a cupcake delivery turns into a fight for survival, she must trust her rescuer—a handsome stranger—to keep her safe.

Rocco is determined to figure out why someone is targeting Peyton. First, he must keep the intriguing woman safe and earn her trust. But threats continue to pummel them as incriminating evidence emerges and pits them against each other.

With time running out, the two must set aside both their growing attraction and their doubts about each other in order to work together. But the perilous facts they discover leave them wondering what exactly the truth is . . . and if the truth can be trusted.

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Currently, I’m reading and thoroughly enjoying a book by an author I’ve loved before.

Out of Hiding 

After witnessing the brutal murder of her parents as a child, Sadie Lane was placed into Witness Protection. Now as an adult, she has a thriving business as a private investigator, but her biggest case is yet to come.

Sadie’s on the hunt to find the man who killed her parents—a brutal crime boss running a dangerous and corrupt syndicate.

Her quest for justice collides with FBI Special Agent Kip Moore who is targeting the organized crime network.

Sadie can’t trust anyone with her secrets—even Kip, but she must work with him to get the killer who forever changed her life. Sadie must put her faith in Kip even when it seems impossible to trust anyone.

The secrets of her past catch up to her when she stares into the eyes of the murderer. Can she keep her true identity secret long enough to bring the killer to justice?

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I hope you all are half as excited as I am to have more new books.

Happy Reading!

Read and enjoyed April 12, 2021

Lots of meat to chew on with this read. T.D. Jakes always has many thought provoking things to add to any story and this was no exception. He gives us an in-depth look at four woman types and the hardest one for me to read was the one most like me. All of the women were hurting in one way or another, that’s the way life is. Difficult patches in life are inevitable. It’s what we do with them that will make or break us.

T.D. Jakes doesn’t hold back, he tells it raw and real. He doesn’t expose us and then leave us hanging out to dry. He leaves us with answers (not always the ones we want to hear but answers nevertheless) and points us to hope. Some people will tear us all apart pointing out the broken places then walking away. He doesn’t ever tear us apart, rather he sheds a light in the dark places to help us see the important things we are missing. His goal is to help us choose a better way.

The broken among us have bought into lies we’ve been told over and over. His novel is one more tool in the arsenal to help us break out of our prison of lies.

He is a great story teller. Everything he is trying to share is woven into the fabric of the story making it strong. The best kind.

Cover Girls by T.D. Jakes

This compelling novel follows four women as they learn to balance children, estranged husbands, boyfriends, and problems at work through their faith in God.

Michelle, Tonya, Mrs. Judson, and Miz Ida. African-American, white, rich, poor — they seemingly have nothing in common. Yet every day they face the complex realities of twenty-first-century urban life as they try to balance their needs with their belief in God. Through the course of a year, these women must come to terms with the past, discover their true identities, and recognize the unexpected miracles that reveal God’s all-encompassing love.

These four women entertain us and invite us to join in their lives. As they welcome us, they also introduce us to the men in their lives. The men play supporting roles, adding color and zest to the lives of the Cover Girls.

Bishop Jakes knows the struggles real women encounter and the losses that make it difficult to face the future. He brings compassionate insight and deep wisdom to this novel and proves that he is not only a gifted preacher, but a born storyteller.

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Currently, I’m into a lighter read. It’s not fluffy by any means, just lighter by comparison.

Run With My Heart: Sweet, Christian Christmas Romance: (A Texas Tornadoes Single Author Sports Romance book 2) (Texas Tornados) 

A football player who’s lost. A woman in danger of losing all she loves. Could he be the Christmas Miracle she’s been praying for?

Pro football player Tucker Jackson has a chip on his shoulder. His mother died when he was young, his father threw himself into his work, and the team he now plays for is in danger of losing their season.

His anger drives him to a bar where an ensuing fight earns him service at a community center. Can he find a way to tame his ire before it destroys his dreams forever?

Shelby Doll has a heart for kids, but the community center she runs is short on funds. Tucker Jackson is her last hope to keep the doors open, but will he leave her in a lurch when it matters the most?

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Happy Reading!

Free book April 11, 2021

BookBub has a FREE suggestion for us today. I have a lot of respect for this author. He has a tender heart filled with wisdom and has a gift for sharing encouragement. I don’t know his full story but he must have one the way he can relate to our pain. He has written many books and has a robust online presence. It adds a new dimension to the impact of his message if you can experience the visual version of his wisdom.

Naked and Not Ashamed: It’s Time to Reveal What God Longs to Heal 

Amazon quote:

Secrets to Healing and Wholeness

Can you present your hurts and failures to  God without shame?

In this classic bestseller, Bishop T.D. Jakes brings encouragement that casts out the fear of vulnerability before God. When you can stand before God, unashamed, you can receive the healing He freely offers.

From the pain of a sick body to the sadness of a dying relationship, from the crushing blow of betrayal to the mental torment of reliving past mistakes—God longs to set you free and release cleansing rivers of mercy, forgiveness, and restoration into every hurting part of your life!

Discover how to:

  • Rest in God’s healing power as you honestly give Him your pain, fear, and hurt.
  • Live your life with confidence because you’ve learned how to break the power of guilt and shame.
  • Boldly access the power of Jesus’ blood and apply it to every area of brokenness you are facing. 

When you open your failures and hurts to God, He will open the floodgates of healing over you!

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T.D. Jakes has written many books, most of them non-fiction but there are a few novels mixed in. I’ve never read any of them but one caught my eye as I breezed past.

Cover Girls by T.D. Jakes

Amazon quote:

This compelling novel follows four women as they learn to balance children, estranged husbands, boyfriends, and problems at work through their faith in God.

Michelle, Tonya, Mrs. Judson, and Miz Ida. African-American, white, rich, poor — they seemingly have nothing in common. Yet every day they face the complex realities of twenty-first-century urban life as they try to balance their needs with their belief in God. Through the course of a year, these women must come to terms with the past, discover their true identities, and recognize the unexpected miracles that reveal God’s all-encompassing love.

These four women entertain us and invite us to join in their lives. As they welcome us, they also introduce us to the men in their lives. The men play supporting roles, adding color and zest to the lives of the Cover Girls.

Bishop Jakes knows the struggles real women encounter and the losses that make it difficult to face the future. He brings compassionate insight and deep wisdom to this novel and proves that he is not only a gifted preacher, but a born storyteller.

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Currently, I’m reading an engaging thriller. My favorite of the week from an author I’ve previously enjoyed at least four times. This experience has not disappointed and I am very happy. This book is still FREE so check it out if you enjoy thrillers and clean novels.

Mind Games (Kaely Quinn Profiler Book #1) 

Kaely Quinn’s talents as an FBI behavior analyst are impossible to ignore, no matter how unorthodox her methods. But when a reporter outs her as the daughter of an infamous serial killer, she’s demoted to field agent and transferred to St. Louis.

When the same reporter who ruined her career claims to have received an anonymous poem predicting a string of murders, ending with Kaely’s, the reporter’s ulterior motives bring his claim into question. But when a body is found that fits the poem’s predictions, the threat is undeniable, and the FBI sends Special Agent Noah Hunter to St. Louis.

Initially resentful of the assignment, Noah is surprised at how quickly his respect for Kaely grows, despite her oddities. But with a brazen serial killer who breaks all the normal patterns on the loose, Noah and Kaely are tested to their limits to catch the murderer before anyone else–including Kaely herself–is killed.

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This has definitely been a slow week for great book suggestions that fit my free or bargain criteria.

I use this criteria for several reasons and I can’t figure out which one is more important. It’s a tie, I think.

For one thing, I use it as the only unemotional way I can come up with to narrow down the possibilities. I use clean as a filter too but it still leaves far to many choices. To be honest I can’t keep up with all of the downloads as it is. I need a filter with muscle.

I suppose I could resort to not ordering every book I mention but that creates another problem. I want to offer books that I know are worth the read. I can’t do that if I don’t read them or know the authors from previous reads.

The other reason, for the most part, that I stick to free and bargain is budget. It would be really easy for me to go over board on spending without restrictions of some sort.

The other thing I like about free and bargain is that it gives me a chance to liberally experience unknown authors. This privilege has been a blessing in so many ways. My favorite authors list has grown to be unbelievably long.

I’m hoping by focusing on free and bargain suggestions it will give you a chance to read books you might not otherwise too. It is so much fun to discover new loves.

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Happy reading y’all

Free book April 08, 2021

BookRunes has a FREE suggestion for us. This is a book from two years ago for me. I know I read it and have a vague recollection so I’m planning to read it again to refresh my memory. If I remember right it was well worth the read.

Lost and Found

“Yttrup has penned a many faceted novel that challenges the reader to pursue spiritual growth as fully as any self-help book would, making her fiction as inspirational as it is entertaining.” Publishers Weekly
Two women who’ve compromised for the sake of security… Will they risk it all?

Jenna Bouvier is losing everything: beauty, family, and wealth. When her emotionally destructive mother-in-law accuses Jenna of an affair with her spiritual director and threatens to expose them, Jenna also risks losing her reputation as a woman of faith. She must choose between bowing to her mother-in-law’s control or fighting for what she holds dear. As Jenna loses her life, will she find it?

Andee Bell has found exactly what she wanted: fame, fortune, respect, and a special man–Jenna’s brother. Despite her success, a secret quells her contentment. As memories torment, Andee can pursue peace in a relationship with God or sabotage herself while taking down the only person she cares about. As Andee finds her life, will she lose it?

Moving between San Francisco and the Napa Valley, Jenna and Andee form an unlikely relationship that leads them to a crossroad. They can follow familiar inclinations, or risk it all and walk in faith.

“A fascinating and helpful read about a woman caught in the web of another person’s deceit and manipulation.” Leslie Vernick, Author of The Emotionally Destructive Relationship, and The Emotionally Destructive Marriage

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A book I do remember reading by this author is Words. It is not a bargain or Free but is worth mentioning just because it is. It made a huge impact on me. Insightful and heart grabbing. I would read this again, in a minute. If my TBR pile was not so large I would read it again.

Words

A child whose silence holds the truth captive. An artist whose work speaks the agony of her past. When drawn together, will they let the truth set them free?

Ten-year old Kaylee Wren doesn’t speak. Not since her drug-addled mother walked away, leaving her in a remote cabin nestled in the towering redwoods, in the care of a man who is as dangerous as he is evil. With silence her only refuge, Kaylee collects words she might never speak from the only memento her mother left behind: a dictionary.

Sierra Daw is thirty-four, an artist, and alone. She has allowed the shame of her past to silence her present hopes and chooses to bury her pain by trying to control her circumstances. But on the twelfth anniversary of her daughter’s death, Sierra’s control begins to crumble as the God of her childhood woos her back to Himself.

Will Kaylee and Sierra let the truth set them free?

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I’m currently reading a nine book collection. I can’t say I’m loving it. I’ve just finished the 5th book and so far it is the one I liked the best. Sometimes the best are the first. Maybe this time the best will be last. I’m hoping, anyway. It is still a bargain price if it is appealing to you.

The Second Chance Brides Collection: Nine Historical Romances Offer New Hope for Love

Hope for Happy Endings Is Renewed in Nine Historical Romances
 
Meet nine women from history spanning from 1776 to 1944 feel the sting of having lost out on love. Can their hope for experiencing romance again be renewed?

Book 5 The Widow of St. Charles Avenue by Grace Hitchcock – New Orleans, 1895
Colette Olivier, a young widow who married out of obligation, finds herself at the end of her mourning period and besieged with suitors out for her inheritance. With her pick of any man, she is drawn to an unlikely choice.

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I suppose one thing that could account for the lack of depth in this collection is the length. Less than 100 pages each, although sometimes it feels like more.

At least I am still reading it, that has to mean something. If it was really bad I would have given up long ago and banished it from my device. It’s true.

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Happy Reading y’all

Bargain books April 08, 2021

I’m reminded today of Charles Martin, the well loved author of deep and engaging stories. My sister-in-law introduced me to his books. and I have to agree, they are everything she said they would be. More than a read they are an experience. To be honest, they have spoiled us. It’s not easy finding other authors with stories that move us the way his do.

One of his books came up as a suggestion this morning. It doesn’t qualify as a bargain but I decided to mention it anyway. Then I noticed the two books included in this collection can be purchased individually at a combined price that is lower than the price of this book. A good deal indeed.

Down Where My Love Lives

USA TODAY bestseller from the author of The Mountain Between Us, now a major motion picture!

Collected together for the first timeDylan and Maggie’s love story.

Down Where My Love Lives is a bittersweet yet triumphant love story—a tale of one man’s spiritual journey through the darkness of despair into the light of hope.

The Dead Don’t Dance was New York Times best-selling author Charles Martin’s debut novel. Even then, the deep characters and emotional power for which he has become so well-known were apparent in his writing. Now, this story—and its sequel—are together in one volume.

The Dead Don’t Dance—A sleepy rural town in South Carolina. The end of summer and a baby about to be born. But in the midst of hope and celebration comes unexpected tragedy, and Dylan Styles must come to terms with both love and loss. Will the music of his heart be stilled forever—or will he choose to dance with life once more?

Maggie—Life began again for Dylan Styles when his beloved wife Maggie awoke from a coma. In this poignant love story that is redolent with Southern atmosphere, Dylan and Maggie must accept their past before they can embrace their future.

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Here they are

Enjoy

More later….maybe

More helpful resources

There can never be too much helpful information. Although it’s good to be thoughtful in deciding which topic, and when.

I like to chose authors carefully, not everyone sells us good information. Misguided ideas or misinformed authors can do more harm than good.

I find it’s also helpful if I pay attention to my needs when it comes to the topic of the book. I’m not always emotionally ready for some topics and it ends up being harmful. Timing is everything sometimes.

Reading slowly enough to allow meditation time has been helpful too. It’s a great way to increase the impact of the information on my life. The trouble with this though, I can’t plough my way through these books the way I normally like to. What’s the point of reading it if I can’t absorb enough to make a difference, so I slow down and enjoy the journey.

Anyway, tonight’s book was suggested by a friend who is aware of my current place on the road to wellness. She’s heard Grant Mullen speak and respects his authority to handle the subject. She thinks this is a book I will find helpful so I’m going to give it a shot. I don’t think I currently have any of his books in my library, this will be a new voice for me.

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Emotionally Free: A Prescription for Healing Body, Soul, and Spirit

Amazon quote:

Are you struggling to control your thoughts, moods, and emotions?
Are you tired of always living with a sense of spiritual defeat?

God wants us to be more than saved. He wants us to be transformed by the renewing of our mind.

Emotionally Free will show you how you can be transformed in body, soul, and spirit. You will discover a freedom you never knew was possible and reach a better understanding of how to resolve depression, anxiety, and mood swings. As a Christian mental health physician, Dr. Grant Mullen has observed the constant struggle that so many Christians live with every day. Many churches rarely acknowledge this struggle. Through patient interviews and his own journey, Dr. Mullen found three links in the chain of emotional bondage that keep Christians bound spiritually, mentally and emotionally. Emotionally Free describes those three links and how with God’s help we can be set free to live a transformed and victorious life.

Learn how to assess your thoughts, personality, and spirit. Emotionally Free puts an end to the unnecessary competition that has existed among psychiatry, counselors, and deliverance ministers. These are important complimentary ministries that we all need. This book explains the role of each and how to know when you need them. You will also learn how depression, anxiety, and mood swings affect Christians in a unique way, and you will be able to assess your own moods and determine if you need medical treatment. Reach a greater understanding of where your spiritual authority comes from and how to use it to set yourself and others free. No matter how suffocating your bondage is now, God is waiting and willing to set you free. Dr. Mullen clearly outlines steps to invite the Holy Spirit into the problem to heal and restore you. Discover a new freedom in your mind, attitudes, reactions, and relationships as you become Emotionally Free.

Dr. Grant Mullen is a mental health physician in Ontario, Canada. He writes and lectures internationally on how medical treatment, deliverance and the healing of our emotional wounds all work together to break the chains of emotional bondage. Dr. Mullen has a special interest in how depression, anxiety and mood disorders affect Christians. Grant is married to Kathy and they have two children.

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That’s it for tonight. Not much else happening.

Wishing you a peaceful, restful night.

One thing led to another and here we are.

Podcasts. They have captured my attention and it would be safe to say I have been binge-watching often lately. Tonight was no exception and this is where the one-thing-lead-to-another comes in. And, in the end it led to books. I think that is quite awesome.

It’s no secret that there is abuse in my background. I’ve talked about it sparingly along the way and by the looks of it, will be sharing again.

As is often the case, the interviewee on the podcast has recently come out with a new book. Out of the six excellent videos watched tonight, the one to capture my interest the most was a story similar to mine. The ending in relation to her marriage was better than mine, aside from that though, the content was definitely helpful. Spoiler alert… the issue in the marriage was pornography, highly addictive and destructive. At the end of this post I’ll share the link for the podcast. Here is the book…

Choosing a Way Out: When the Bottom Isn’t the Bottom

Amazon quote:

Was it all a lie?

When the author heard her husband’s confession, it took her breath away. Looking back she realized her husband’s sin exposed the deception in her own life. This uninvited crisis proved to be the impetus for her ultimate healing.

Kirsten writes that for most of her adult life she believed:

• She wasn’t good enough, or pretty enough, or smart enough, or rich enough, or talented enough, or whatever enough.

She wasn’t a good person. She was too stubborn, opinionated, and direct.

She was a failure because she’d tried something bold and audacious and didn’t succeed like planned.

• She was invisible and forgettable.

In these pages, you’ll experience raw honesty and a clear path through the pain. You’ll realize that no depression is too dark and no lie too strong. Discover a powerful process where you exchange isolation for accountability and deception for deliverance. Today you can experience a way out, even in the bleakest of circumstances where the bottom doesn’t feel like the bottom. The truth is that God is greater than your pain.

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There’s more.

In the suggestion strip at the bottom of the screen there was a book that appears to apply to me. The longer I looked at it, the more familiar it felt. I checked. I have two copies of it, gifted years ago by a concerned friend. I have read it and taken copious notes, it was that helpful. I have it but will tell you about it again anyway.

The Wounded Heart: Hope for Adult Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse

Amazon quote:

For those who have experienced childhood sexual abuse and those who love and care for them, The Wounded Heart offers a tender, compassionate window into the psychological effects of abuse and the theological foundations for healing.

Thirty years ago, with great courage and vision, Dan Allender brought Christians to the table to acknowledge, understand, and help victims heal from their experience of the evil of sexual abuse. His work continues to help victims and those who love them to honestly acknowledge their abuse, understand the unique challenge of repentance for victims of abuse, and learn to love boldly in defiance of their trauma. Ultimately Dan offers the bold assurance to sexual abuse victims that even they can find their way to joy and hope in the comforting embrace of a good God.

The Wounded Heart has sold over 400,000 copies and has been the first book family, friends, counselors, pastors, and victims have turned to in search of Christian answers to the calamity of sexual abuse. With a new introduction reflecting on the ongoing importance of the book, and a companion workbook for personal and group recovery, The Wounded Heart continues to offer an urgently needed word of grace in a world ravaged by sexual abuse.

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So, further investigation led me to a newer book that I think is an updated version of The Wounded Heart. I think I need to read this one too.

Healing the Wounded Heart: The Heartache of Sexual Abuse and the Hope of Transformation 

Amazon quote:

First published in 1989, Dan Allender’s The Wounded Heart has helped hundreds of thousands of people come to terms with sexual abuse in their past. Now, more than twenty-five years later, Allender has written a brand-new book on the subject that takes into account recent discoveries about the lasting physical, emotional, relational, and spiritual ramifications of sexual abuse.

With great compassion Allender offers hope for victims of rape, date rape, incest, molestation, sexting, sexual bullying, unwanted advances, pornography, and more, exposing the raw wounds that are left behind and clearing the path toward wholeness and healing. Never minimizing victims’ pain or offering pat spiritual answers that don’t truly address the problem, he instead calls evil evil and lights the way to renewed joy.

Counselors, pastors, and friends of those who have suffered sexual harm will find in this book the deep spiritual guidance they need to effectively minister to the sexually broken around them. Victims themselves will find here a sympathetic friend to walk alongside them on the road to healing.

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One more for me from the suggestion strip.

For years I have been working on telling my story, looking for ways to express it more effectively. It’s important for several reasons. It’s therapeutic for me and affirming to those who hear it.

The percentages listed for those suffering as victims of abuse is high.

It looks like the numbers involved in addictions is even higher. Addicts leave victims, adding even more to the number of casualties. The importance of sharing our story is even greater now than it was when I started on this healing journey many years ago.

To Be Told: Know Your Story, Shape Your Future

Amazon quote:

God wants to reveal himself through your story. Discover how he has written your life so far, and how he is leading you into the rest of your story.

“This is a book worth reading. To make sense of your life. To discover the role God is giving you in his story.”—John Eldredge, bestselling author of Wild at Heart and Get Your Life Back

Everyone wants clearer guidance from God on what to do with their future. In this insightful book, therapist and professor Dan Allender shows you how to listen to the stories of your life and identify the themes that God has written there. As you begin to understand both the hope and the heartache, you will gain a clearer sense of the meaning that God has written into every detail of who you are. You’ll also see how he invites you to join him in coauthoring the rest of your story. God is your Author, and he is showing you how to follow him into the future.

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In the above blurb the book Wild at Heart is mentioned. Excellent book. I have read my copy and highly recommend it. It’s written for men but gives helpful insight to the women in their lives.

Wild at Heart Expanded Edition: Discovering the Secret of a Man’s Soul

Amazon quote:

God did not create men to be nice boys. He created us to live a life of passion, freedom and adventure. To be dangerous men living in a really big story.

God designed men to be powerful. Simply look at the dreams and desires written in the heart of every boy: to be a hero, a warrior, to love a beauty, to live a life of adventure.

But sometime between boyhood and the struggles of yesterday, most men lose heart. All those passions, dreams, and desires get buried under deadlines, pressures, and disappointments. Christianity feels irrelevant to the recovery of their heart. No wonder most men leads lives of quiet resignation, meanwhile looking for a little “life” on the side. In this provocative book, Eldredge invites men to wholeheartedness by

  • recovering their true masculine hearts;
  • healing the wounds and trauma in their stories; and
  • delighting in the strength and wildness they were created to offer the world.

In this updated and expanded edition of the timeless, bestselling classic, John Eldredge calls men—and the women who love them—to discover the true secret of a man’s soul and embrace the danger, passion, and freedom God intended for every man.

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I didn’t plan for this post to go so long but it’s all good stuff.

As promised, here is the link for the podcast that started this ball rolling for me. The interview was in two parts and it was the second that impacted me the most. They were both good though.

It would probably be a good idea to watch part one first to give you context. Due to the length of this post I won’t include the link but it will show up for you when this one is opened.

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I hope this will be as helpful to you on your journey as it has been to me on mine.

All the best to you,

a fellow traveler.