Is It Just Me? Learnng to Trust God in the Middle of Hurts, Doubts and Fears by Grace Valentine (JustRead Tours & Giveaway)

March 9, 2021

Is it Just Me JustRead Blog Tour 

Welcome to the Blog Tour for Is It Just Me? by Grace Valentine, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Is It Just Me

Title: Is It Just Me?
Author: Grace Valentine
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: February 9, 2021
Genre: Christian Life/Women's Issues

An anthem for every woman who is weary of living a life in which she knows the right answers but does not believe them. 


Is It Just Me? is a book by a popular social media blogger that helps young women find true trust in Jesus when they are overwhelmed and frustrated with their lives.  


Many women joke about having trust issues—laughing at their struggle because it feels common but secretly feeling there is no hope. Grace Valentine was one of them. In her twenties she realized her trust issues were not humorous because in reality hers were trust issues with Jesus, her community, her family, and herself. And they were destroying her faith. Grace creatively told herself she was simply being realistic, but the truth was, she was entangled with doubt and lies. 


In Grace’s second book, Is It Just Me?, she offers readers a new perspective by helping them find answers to five deeply felt questions.

  • Am I the only one who is tired, overwhelmed, doubting, and fearful?
  • Am I the only one who feels hurt and lonely?
  • Am I the only one who still is struggling to find my purpose?
  • Am I the only one struggling to trust that God is there?
  • Am I the only one confused about how to be an adult?

Grace’s personal story and perceptive insights show other young women that not only are they are not alone, they can trust God in the middle of their hurts, doubts, and fears.

Excerpt:

I think trust issues cause many of us to struggle to trust God to supply our strength on difficult and lonely days. We believe we have been failed by the church, Christians, friends, family, and, well, almost everyone else. We stopped trusting Jesus and claimed we were just being realistic.



That’s one of the intriguing parts about faith— it was never meant to be realistic. Relying on a Spirit you cannot physically see to give you strength is not realistic. Soaring on wings like eagles when you have a nine- to- five job and kids waiting for you at home is not realis-tic. Soaring on wings like eagles while you’re a college student being judged by people because of your past is not realistic. Learning to trust can feel impossible if you have been cheated on, had your heart broken, or have been betrayed by a close friend. Growing in your faith is not realistic when you’re busy in college and ate Taco Bell at 3:00 a.m. because midterms suck. But, my friend, believe me when I say it is possible to do all those things if we ditch our trust issues and cultivate a trust that is stronger than our weariness.



Taken from “Is it Just Me? Learning to Trust God in the Middle of Hursts, Doubts and Fears” by Grace Valentine. Copyright 2021 by Grace Valentine. Used with permission from Thomas Nelson.



__________________________________________________________________________

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Grace Valentine 

Grace Valentine is an author, blogger, podcast host, and speaker. Her readers love that she is so relatable. They say her fresh voice helps them navigate their own faith and life, which in turn helps fulfill her mission to show others that Christianity is an adventure worth living. After growing up outside New Orleans, Louisiana, Grace attended Baylor University, graduating in 2018 with a degree in journalism. She now resides in Orlando, Florida, where she enjoys running and eating lots of sushi.




CONNECT WITH GRACE:
WebsiteFacebook | Instagram | Twitter

TOUR GIVEAWAY:

(1) winner will receive a print copy of Am I Enough? and Is it Just Me? by Grace Valentine!

Is It Just Me JustRead Giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway began at midnight March 8, 2021 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on March 15, 2021. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours 

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.




Review: To Dwell Among Cedars by Connilyn Cossette

March 8, 2021

Title: To Dwell Among Cedars
Author: Connilyn Cossette
Publisher: Bethany House 
Pages: 364
ISBN: 9780764234347
Publication Date: December 1st, 2020

About the Book:
As they fight for the soul of Israel, will they find healing for their own?

Eight years ago, after the Philistines surrendered the stolen Ark of the Covenant back to the Israelites, Eliora and her brother left their Philistine homeland to follow it to the community of Kiryat-Yearim. Though they both were lovingly enfolded into a Levite family that guards the Ark, Eliora can't stop feeling like she doesn't belong.

Meanwhile, a faction of discontent Hebrews finds Kiryat-Yearim to be an unfit resting place and believes that the sacred vessel should be in the hands of the priests who mean to restore the Holy of Holies in a new location. Under the guise of gathering Hebrews to worship together for the festivals, Levite musician Ronen has been sent by his uncle to find where the Ark has been hidden and steal it back. But Ronen never expected that the Philistine girl he rescued years ago would now be part of the very family he's tasked to deceive.

Ronen's attempts to charm Eliora into revealing the location of the Ark lead them in unexpected directions, as they must battle betrayal and fear to help establish Israel's leadership for a better future.

My Thoughts:
Stunning! That was the word that came to mind as I closed this book upon finishing it. 
This is a book of, things are not what they appear to be. The ideas you have on certain backgrounds and and how you think this will play out prove to be wrong, in the best sense of the word. 

When we meet Eliora for the first time, she is a young girl, lost in a world without her mother and father, and only has the slave who has watched after since she was born to truly care for her. Eliora's main concern is her little brother. She is willing to do anything, even at her young age to keep him safe. With her young eyes, she witness things that could make an adult quake, but she persists in her determination to save her brother. With just a small bit of guidance into a land of unknown, Eliora's life takes the most dramatic and beautiful change. 

We see how these events have shaped Eliora and her life and she becomes a woman who just radiates her faith and love for those in her life. She is a sweet and innocent character, but also one of strong determination. He story is one that is an uplifting tale. 

Ronen's story is similar in a way to Eliora's but also completely different. It is a story that shows how you feel and how the ones you are with during your lowest time can shape you and mold you. 

Ronen is a strong man, educated in many ways, but also determined to do what he thinks is right, without truly looking into where decisions come from. But his story is one of love and compassion, even with the loss he carries. 

Eliora and Ronen's story is set during a time after a great many judges have helped Israel and now Samuel has made his appearance into this interesting time of Israel's history. This story really opened up a time I haven't read too much into, but really brought it to my attention to seek out and read more. 

I honestly can't wait for book two of this story. The ending of this book was an emotional punch to the gut and I can't wait to see what happens next. 

5 out of 5

About the Author:
Connilyn Cossette (www.connilyncossette.com) is a Christy Award and Carol Award winning author whose books have been found on ECPA and CBA bestseller lists. When she is not engulfed in the happy chaos of homeschooling two teenagers, devouring books whole, or avoiding housework, she can be found digging into the rich ancient world of the Bible to discover gems of grace that point to Jesus and weaving them into an immersive fiction experience. Although she and her husband have lived all over the country in their twenty-plus years of marriage, they currently call a little town south of Dallas, Texas, their home.



Thank you to the author, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review. 


Review: Love Amid the Ashes by Mesu Andrews (AudioBook) JustRead Publicity Tour

March 4, 2021


Title: Love Among the Ashes
Author: Mesu Andrews
Narrator: Lisa Larsen
Length: 13 hrs & 57 mins
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Series: Treasures of His Love, Bk 1
Publication Date: November 2019

About the Book:
Drawing together the account of Job with those of Esau's tribe and Jacob's daughter Dinah, Love Amid the Ashes breathes life, romance, and passion into the classic biblical story of suffering and steadfast faith.


Readers often think of Job sitting on the ash heap, his life in shambles. But how did he get there? What was Job's life like before tragedy struck? What did he think as his world came crashing down around him? And what was life like after God restored his wealth, health, and family?


Through painstaking research and a writer's creative mind, Mesu Andrews weaves an emotional and stirring account of this well-known story told through the eyes of the women who loved him. Drawing together the account of Job with those of Esau's tribe and Jacob's daughter Dinah, Love Amid the Ashes breathes life, romance, and passion into the classic biblical story of suffering and steadfast faith.
My Thoughts:
I'm back once again raving about the fabulousness of Mesu Andrews' books. This time it is her debut novel that was published in audio form. Love Amid the Ashes was such a unique story for me when I first read it. It made me think about how the stories in the Bible are presented and made me want to do some further research on me own. I never would have through Job was at the time of Jacob and his 12 sons. Love Amid the Ashes really made me think. It was such a fantastic read! You can read my full review on it here.

I had an opportunity to read this book in another medium, audiobook, and I was super excited to have that chance. Lisa Larsen in the narrator again, and her voice really adds another level to the story. When you read, you have your own internal monologue going. If you're like me, you think, how do they sound? What tone would they have? Audiobooks, you really don't have to think about that when you have a narrator that can deliver the story in a way that allows you to escape into the book and not think of anything else. Lisa's voice has a smooth and flowy quality that really sets the story. 

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this book and diving into Dinah and Job's story again. Audiobooks have away of bringing little details to attention I can sometimes miss while reading, whether getting distracted, or  engrossed in the story, the little things fall to the side. Audio, I'm able to really enjoy every aspect of the story. 

5 out of 5

About the Author:
Mesu Andrews
 is the award-winning author of Love Amid the AshesLove's Sacred Song, and Love in a Broken Vessel. Winner of the 2012 ECPA Christian Book Award for New Author, she has devoted herself to passionate and intense study of Scripture, bringing the biblical world vividly alive for her readers. She lives in North Carolina. Learn more at www.mesuandrews.com.




Thank you to JustReads Tours, I received a copy of this audiobook for free in exchange for an honest review. 





Review: In the Shadow of Jezebel by Mesu Andrews (Audiobook Review) JustRead Blog Tour

March 3, 2021


Title: In the Shadow of Jezebel
Author: Mesu Andrews
Narrated by: Lisa Larsen
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Length: 15 hrs & 33 mins
Series: Treasures of His Love, Bk 4
Release Date: January 28th, 2020

About the Book: 
Princess Jehosheba wants nothing more than to please the harsh and demanding Queen Athaliah, daughter of the notorious Queen Jezebel. Her work as a priestess in the temple of Baal seems to do the trick. But when a mysterious letter from the dead prophet Elijah predicts doom for the royal household, Jehosheba realizes that the dark arts she practices reach beyond the realm of earthly governments. To further Athaliah and Jezebel's strategies, she is forced to marry Yahweh's high priest and enters the unfamiliar world of Yahweh's temple. Can her new husband show her the truth and love she craves? And can Jehosheba overcome her fear and save the family - and the nation - she loves?

With deft skill, Mesu Andrews brings Old Testament passages to life, revealing a fascinating story of the power of unconditional love.

My Thoughts:
I have been a fan of Mesu Andrews writing for many years! I have actually read In the Shadow of Jezebel when it first came out in paperback. You can read my original review on the story here. It was such a captivating story, so when the opportunity to be able to enjoy the story in another medium came up, I pounced!

It has been about 6-7 years since I originally read this story, so not all the elements were fresh in my mind, hearing In the Shadow of Jezebel through new ears was phenomenal.When I first read it it was a nail bitter and it had me wanting things to resolve, but the suspense kept going. Hearing it this time around, oh my goodness, Lisa Larsen was able to add a new depth to this book that just kept me listening. Lisa's skills in conveying a story is so well done. Her voice is steady, smooth, and calming. Her voice paired so well with Mesu Andrews writing. Each have a talent to capture you in a book. As you listen, you do forget that you are listening to an audiobook. You are fully immersed in the story. 

If you are wanting to try Biblical fiction, or even try an audio, this is definitely one I would recommend jumping into. I've been listening to audiobooks for a couple of years now, and this one of my most favorites I have to say. 

5 out of 5


About the Author:
Mesu Andrews
 is the award-winning author of Love Amid the AshesLove's Sacred Song, and Love in a Broken Vessel. Winner of the 2012 ECPA Christian Book Award for New Author, she has devoted herself to passionate and intense study of Scripture, bringing the biblical world vividly alive for her readers. She lives in North Carolina. Learn more at www.mesuandrews.com.






Thank you to JustReads Tours, I received a copy of this audiobook for free in exchange for an honest review. 


Top Ten Tuesday: Books Written Before I Was Born

February 2, 2021


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Artsy Read Girl.
Each week features a book related topic to spotlight your Top Ten.

Topic

Books Written Before I Was Born

This topic should be fun! Haha
There are so many books written before I was born. I think I will focused on the books I've read and have enjoyed. This could go all over the place. There might be an assortment of reading levels with this topic. 
I love reading classics, so this topic may be full of them. 



by Loisa May Allcott
by Margaret Mitchell
by E.B. White



by Charlotte Bronte
by C.S. Lewis

What was on your list today? What books were published before you were born?

 Do I want to know.....? :-D 




Glory Falls by Janine Rosche Blog and Review Tour & Giveaway (JustRead Tours)

January 29, 2021

Glory Falls JustRead Blog + Review Tour 

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for Glory Falls by Janine Rosche, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Glory Falls

Title: Glory Falls
Series: Madison River Romance #3 
Author: Janine Rosche
Publisher: Berkley Books
Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance
Release Date: January 12, 2021

Two people scarred by past trauma have a chance to write a new chapter in their lives, overcome loss, and find love in the third entry in the Madison River Romance series. 


Screenwriter Cecilia "Blue" Walker is victim to life's worst plot twists. Having lost her daughter to the depths of the Madison River and her husband to the arms of another woman, she finds herself yearning for something to restore her brittle faith and once-vibrant career. 


Hope arrives in the form of her childhood friend, Thomas Beck, a firefighter with a legacy of larger-than-life rescues who doesn't see himself as a hero. Haunted by his past, Thomas only agrees to a movie adaptation of his story if Blue, his longtime crush, is the screenwriter. 


However, as Blue and Thomas work together to bring his heroism to the big screen, the glitz and glamour of Hollywood threaten to shed light on secrets that could tear their fragile relationship and their lives apart.

EXCERPT:
Before he reached the top step, the door opened. Out walked the prettiest girl he’d ever seen. She touched her hair, which had been curled and pinned back giving sight to her lovely neck. The few blond curls that framed her face also brought light to her striking eyes. Blue glanced down at her dress—sky blue on the bodice and lightening in color as the skirt flowed down—and smoothed the front of it. Was she insecure about the way she looked?

No, he didn’t want that. He needed to say something. Too bad there were better odds that his dog, back in Montana, could speak at this moment than him.

Actions would have to do. He finished his steps and met her at the top. He leaned forward and kissed her cheek. The moment his lips touched her skin, it was as if an electric current passed between them, so he let the kiss linger several seconds until it got awkward. Robbie said he should be himself, after all. He was nothing if not awkward


PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | IndieBound | Christianbook | BookBub

BOOKS IN THIS SERIES


ABOUT THE AUTHOR



Prone to wander, Janine Rosche finds as much comfort on the open road as she does at home. This longing to chase adventure, behold splendor, and experience redemption is woven into her Madison River Romance series. When she isn’t writing or traveling, she teaches family life education courses to college students, takes too many pictures of her sleeping dogs, and embarrasses her four children and husband with boy band serenades.





CONNECT WITH JANINE: Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a Glory Falls prize package including a paperback copy of Glory Falls, a Society 6 Mountain Dusk Tote Bag, “Nevertheless She Persisted” Journal, Huckleberry Haven Candle, Kawaii Pen Shop Feather Bookmarks, and a $10 Amazon Gift Card! (total prize package value $60)

Glory Falls JustRead Giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway began at midnight January 25, 2021 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on February 1, 2021. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours 

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.


Thanks for stopping by!

Waiting On Wednesday: Shadows of the White City by Jocelyn Green

January 27, 2021

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly feature that spotlights an up-and-coming release you are most excited about.

I'm kicking off this New Year looking forward to one of my favorite authors. Jocelyn Green writes historical fiction in such a way, she takes you back in time. 
This feature is for a continuation of her Windy City Saga. Book one, Veiled in Smoke focused on the great Chicago Fire and the aftermath it had. Book two is set at the time of the World's Fair. I'm very excited about this, as I haven't really read a book set during this even yet. 


Waiting On:
Title: Shadows of the White City
Author: Jocelyn Green
Publisher: Bethany House
Series: Windy City Saga
Publication Date: February 2nd, 2021

About the Book:
The one thing Sylvie Townsend wants most is what she feared she was destined never to have--a family of her own. But taking in Polish immigrant Rose Dabrowski to raise and love quells those fears--until seventeen-year-old Rose goes missing at the World's Fair, and Sylvie's world unravels.


Brushed off by the authorities, Sylvie turns to her boarder, Kristof Bartok, for help. He is Rose's violin instructor and the concertmaster for the Columbian Exposition Orchestra, and his language skills are vital to helping Sylvie navigate the immigrant communities where their search leads.


From the glittering architecture of the fair to the dark houses of Chicago's poorest neighborhoods, they're taken on a search that points to Rose's long-lost family. Is Sylvie willing to let the girl go? And as Kristof and Sylvie grow closer, can she reconcile her craving for control with her yearning to belong?

What are you waiting on this week?
Any new releases that have popped out for you?




Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Meant to Read In 2020 but Didn’t Get To

January 26, 2021


Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Artsy Read Girl.
Each week features a book related topic to spotlight your Top Ten.

I fell behind in last weeks prompt, and since my reading lacked way too much last year to answer or fill in the top ten, so I'm going back a week.

Topic:

Books I Meant to Read In 2020 but Didn’t Get To

So, life in 2020 was a little weird. So much newness, change, family additions....I had high hopes for reading, but it all came crashing down. But, there are still so many books that came out in 2020 that I still want to read. So, in no particular order, these are the books I wish I could have read, but didn't get to.....and granted, my list is actually way bigger then 10.


by Suzanne Collins
by Tamera Alexander
by J'Nell Ciesielsi




by Rachel Hauck
by Jaime Jo Wright
by Tessa Afshar


by Heidi Chiavaroli
by Amanda Dykes
by Jen Turano

I'm hoping to fix this and read these stories this year. 

What was the Top Ten you focused on today?





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