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Thoughts on Wonderstruck

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 21, 2012 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)

My friend, Margaret Feinberg, has a new book and 7-session DVD

Bible study called Wonderstruck: Awaken to the Nearness of God,which releases Christmas Day. This is a personal invitation for you to toss back the covers, climb out of bed, and drink in the fullness of life. This book will turn your prayer life upside down, stir your desire to live more abundantly, and take your relationships with others to the next level. To learn more, watch the Wonderstruck Video.

Margaret recently posted a great warning on her site that those who have read Wonderstruck have experienced the following symptoms:

-An inability to stop smiling

-An uncontainable desire to pray

-A loss of interest in judging others

-A quiet, unshakable confidence in God

-A renewed ability to see the wonders of God all around

And from what I’ve seen, they’re all true! I wanted to share some thoughts that stuck out to me as I read a sneak peek of Wonderstruck:

   When we allow ourselves to stop and to truly see the beauty of the natural world around us we are in awe of God and we feel a need to learn more about the Creator of this wonder that is our world. 

   I am struck by the power Jesus had over nature.  With His voice He determined the fate of a fig tree.  Climbing into a boat He calmed the wind and the sea.  Who among us can do this?  With all our scientific advances we can't stop the wind, calm the waves, or speak a tree into death.  

   Keeping a childlike wonder is what will keep us closer to God as we can more fully appreciate the beauty and uniqueness of Creation.  The dance that only a leaf laden tree can experience on a breezy summer day.  The instant of beauty before a snowflake disappears.   The first grasp of a newborn's hand around a parent's finger.

   We need to stop and look around us, to truly see the world and all it has to offer.  It all speaks of the wonder of God.

   What wonder will you notice today? 


 Follow Margaret’s snarky, funny, and inspirational posts on TwitterFacebook, or her blog. You can learn more about this great book by visiting where she’s offering some crazy promos right now with up to $300 of free stuff. 

 If you're like me and want to get a good deal, I’ve seen the book for as low as $7.57 ($14.99 retail) on Barnes and Noble.

A Christmas Home ~ Review

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 15, 2012 at 10:30 PM Comments comments (0)




A Christmas Home

by Greg Kincaid

Todd McCray has grown into his position at the shelter and Christmas is vital part of the McCray household.  But nothing ever stays the same and the town of Crossing Trails, Kansas is no different. With the economy pulling the area down the shelter is going to be closed after the first of the year.

With his job ending Todd must decide what he wants to do, but what can he do?  Working with animals is what he knows, is there a job out there to fit his special talents?

But even more urgent than finding a job is the daunting task of finding homes for close to 50 dogs and cats in just a few weeks.  Can Todd pull off another Christmas miracle?  With the help and support of his friends and family Todd is determined to place all the animals.

But Todd is ready for more independence and with the help of his friend Laura Jordan he is about to determine what he wants for his life after the shelter.  But where will Todd's independence lead him and can he convince his parents that he is ready to move out? 

A Christmas Home is a great follow-up to A Dog Named Christmas.  Seeing the relationship Christmas has with both George and Todd is touching.  Todd's struggle to become his own person and his developing relationship with Laura are the heart of the story.  When disaster strikes the little time the shelter has left is lost, can those most involved with the shelter step in and save the dozen abandoned pets still waiting for a home?  Only Christmas can tell....

I was provided with a copy of this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.



Rosemary Opens Her Heart ~ Review

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 12, 2012 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)




Rosemary Opens Her Heart

Home at Cedar Creek Book 2

By Naomi King

Rosemary Yutzy is still grieving over her husband Joe.  But when she attends a wedding in Cedar Creek change that she never expected is about to come yet again into her life in the form of Matt Lambright.  For Matt, Rosemary is everything he has ever wanted in a wife but can he convince her.

Meanwhile Abby Lambright may be about to have her lifelong dream finally come true when James Graber starts paying attention to her.  James realizes that Abby and not her younger sister Zanna is the true match for his soul.

When Rosemary's father-in-law decides to merge his sheep breeding operation with Matt Lambright's, Rosemary is left with a choice.  Should she move with her father-in-law and young sister-in-law to Cedar Creek or should she stay in Queen City to be near her mother and sister.  Can Matt help her determine the course her heart should chart or will his attentions drive her away from the new life she could have?

As Rosemary, Matt, Abby, and James navigate the paths of the heart, the community of Cedar Creek must deal with a death that will change the entire dynamics of the community.

As Rosemary learns to open her heart to all God has for her, she rediscovers the peace and joy that life has to offer.

Rosemary Opens Her Heart is set in Missouri and explores the Amish community that lives there.



Charlotte-HubbardABOUT NAOMI KING















I’ve called Missouri home for most of my life, and most folks don’t realize that several Old Older Amish and Mennonite communities make their home here, as well. The rolling pastureland, woods, and small towns along county highways make a wonderful setting for Plain populations—and for stories about them, too! While Jamesport, Missouri is the largest Old Order Amish settlement west of the Mississippi River, other communities have also found the affordable farm land ideal for raising crops, livestock, and running the small family-owned businesses that support their families.




Like my heroine, Miriam Lantz, of my new Seasons of the Heart series, I love to feed people—to share my hearth and home. I bake bread and goodies and I love to try new recipes. I put up jars and jars of green beans, tomatoes, beets and other veggies every summer. All my adult life, I’ve been a deacon, a dedicated church musician and choir member, and we hosted a potluck group in our home for more than twenty years.




Like Abby Lambright, heroine of my new Home at Cedar Creek series, I consider it a personal mission to be a listener and a peacemaker—to heal broken hearts and wounded souls. Faith and family, farming and frugality matter to me: like Abby, I sew and enjoy fabric arts—I made my wedding dress and the one Mom wore, too, when I married into an Iowa farm family more than thirty-five years ago! When I’m not writing, I crochet and sew, and I love to travel.




I recently moved to Minnesota when my husband got a wonderful new job, so now he and I and our border collie, Ramona, are exploring our new state and making new friends.




To find out more about Naomi, please visit her at




Visit her on Facebook at:


























Another spring reminds the Amish of Cedar Creek, Missouri, that for everything there is a season.




Zanna Lambright is finally marrying Jonny Ropp, and friends and family have come from far and wide to celebrate. Among them is young widow Rosemary Yutzy, mother of toddler Katie, whose husband was tragically killed last fall. With a willing heart Rosemary has taken over care of her in-law’s family and continued to run a baked goods business from home, but privately she still mourns her lost Joe…and is unprepared for the changes that are coming…




Rosemary’s father-in-law wants to merge his lamb-raising business with Matt Lambright’s—a move that will require the Yutzys to relocate from their nearby town to Cedar Creek. Moreoever, it will bring Rosemary into constant contact with Matt, who is making no secret of his romantic interest in her. The challenges of contemplating a future unlike any she expected are overwhelming for Rosemary. And although Matt is strong and kind, his courtship is so persistent, she often wants to run the other way. As Rosemary struggles to see beyond her immediate joys and sorrows, will she embrace the outpouring of welcome and support from the people of Cedar Creek…and accept this new chance to open her heart to a more abundant life?




BOLD as LOVE ~ Review

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 9, 2012 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)





by Bob Roberts, JR.

Are you willing to change the world starting in your neighborhood?  We can change the world not by standing on a corner telling others that they need to do it our way, but rather by stepping out boldly and serving them.  That's right only when we serve others can we show the love that Jesus lived.  He took on the role of a servant out of love and changed the lives of those He served.  He reached out to those that were considered beneath Him or unclean to His faith.

We are living in a world in the midst of change, where everyone and anyone can affect the entire world.  And the influx of immigrants into America is forcing us to deal with the rest of the world both economically and spiritually.  This is a God-given opportunity for us to be missionaries in our own neighborhood and at the same time have a global reach.

We must not view other people groups negatively!  When we do this stereotype and condescend when we communicate with others.  We must live out Colossians 4:3-6 and understand others by listening to their concerns and care about them as a person.

The Bible is a book about global migration and the mingling and mixing of different faiths.  Migration is how God spread His Word throughout the ancient world.  When we love God and follow Jesus' teachings we will love others even when our mind says it is impossible.  Through God the people we most fear can become the people we most love.  Jesus told us to "love our enemies" so in Jesus' eyes we have no enemies because if you love someone they are no longer your enemy.

Fear holds us prisoner, but bold love sets us free.  When we seek out friendships with those of other faiths we are opening ourselves to challenges to our beliefs, but these challenges strengthen our faith.  We need to know why we believe what we believe.  We need to show respect to others and to their beliefs.  America was founded on religious freedom.  We cannot deny this founding precept to some, isolating them because they believe differently.  We need to be like Paul and reach out with respect and build relationships.

We must be the Church in every aspect of our day-to-day life.  Are you a living Church, ministering to the needs of others of all faiths?  To be a force of change we need to first serve with our hands, then we must offer our hearts in friendship, and finally we offer thoughts that will spark deep, genuine conversation.  Service must come before everything.

Love is a choice, not an emotion.  When we serve in Jesus' name and for love of Him we will come to genuinely love those we serve.  This service is a true expression of the Gospel, Serve not to convert, but serve because you've been converted.  We need to remember we can't save, only God can do this.

Wherever we are Jesus is too because He is within us.  When we learn to see through His eyes, we will have Bold Love and break through our fears!



Will you Break on Through and turn the world upside down with Bold Love?


I received a copy of this book for the purpose of this review.

break on through

The Christian Alphabet Book ~ Review

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 7, 2012 at 12:05 AM Comments comments (0)




The Christian Alphabet Book

Teaching Children about Jesus, Prayer, and the Bible

by Tracy Sands

Have you wanted to teach your children the alphabet in a new way, one that reflects your beliefs?  Well, The Christian Alphabet Book may be just what you are looking for.  This a unique way of teaching your children about the Bible, Jesus and Prayer using the alphabet as the building block.

An example is F is for Faith

Faith is belief and trust in God.

Then follows a description of faith and exercise of faith so that the child can experience faith in action to grasp better what faith in God is.  A couple of verses are given for reference and a prayer requesting faith is given.

At the end of the book is The Christian Alphabet Symbology where the symbols that are used to form each letter is explained.

The Christian Alphabet Book would perfect for the home schooler, a church library, or as an additional classroom aid in a Christian school.  You can supplement your family devotions as you study and dwell on the love of God.  The only letter that I feel might be confusing to younger children is X which is for eXample.

I was provided a copy of this title for the purpose of this review, all opinions expressed are my own.

Tracy Sands
















Tracy Sands is from Peachtree City, Georgia, where she lives with her husband, Albert, and their three sons, Chase, Gabe, and Adam. Tracy taught art and “church school” to all ages for many years. She now spends her time caring for her active family and working on The Christian Alphabet.

To find out more, please visit her at









In 1999, the Lord inspired me at a church choir event. As I sat in the back pew, listening to the awesome Christian music, an incredible urge to draw came over me. Being an art teacher, I had experienced this feeling, but never with such intensity. I had a pen in my pocket, but the only paper available was the program I received at the door. In the empty space of that program, I sketched like crazy. I felt as though I would pop if I didn’t get the ideas out of my brain immediately.

I will never forget that experience. I felt peaceful yet energized. God was just getting started with me. Over the next nine months, God and I created this alphabet.

Captain ~ Review and Giveaway

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 7, 2012 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)


By Thomas Block

When you combine a runaway plane, a delusional co-pilot, an unscrupulous Board of Directors, a reporter after the story, and a retired airline pilot you get Captain!  Thomas Block has created an intense setting that will hold you riveted until the very end.

Trans-Atlantic Airlines has a secret that is about to be exposed and you are about to discover what that secret is....

The company is about to be sold off those only a few people know this and someone has leaked this to Jennifer Lane who is determined to get the story and what a story  she is about to get.

Flight 3 out of Rome was a typical flight, not filled to capacity but still full enough.  Retired pilot Ray Clarke is returning to New York after exploring Northern Italy.  The Consolidated 768 was a converted Boeing 767 and to his eye it was a 767.  Against company and TSA policy and the objections of co-pilot Peter Fenton, Captain Jack Schofield invited his old friend to the cockpit for takeoff..

But when a oddity that was not possible according to "the books" occurs, Jack asks Ray for his opinion on the matter and how he would handle it.  What follows next is a panicked radio message and gunshots!  As Consolidated Flight 3 struggles to survive actions are set into motion that could doom this flight before it can reach its final destination.

As everyone scrambles to determine the truth and figure out what went wrong lives hang in the balance and Consolidated President Brandon Kyle maneuvers to save his upcoming financial windfall regardless of the costs.

Lives are going to be lost, it is just a question of whose and how many.....   

  I found this to be an extremely intense "what's going to happen next" type book.  And before you ask there are no women going into labor. (Ugh!!!!)  The only distraction I found was the touches of swearing that the characters used occasionally in moments stress (unfortunately one hears worse from kids walking down the street).  But overall I enjoyed Captain and would recommend it.

I was provided a copy of this title for the purpose of this review all opinions expressed are my own.



 Thomas Block has written a number of aviation-oriented novels, many which have gone on to acquire best-seller status in numerous countries. His novel writing began with the publication of “Mayday” in 1979. That novel was rewritten with novelist Nelson DeMille in 1998 and remains on DeMille’s extensive backlist. “Mayday” became a CBS Movie of the Week in October, 2005.

Several of the other novels by Block include “Orbit” (a top bestseller in Germany, among other nations), “Airship Nine”, “Forced Landing” (also done as a radio serialization drama in Japan), “Skyfall”, “Open Skies” and his latest novel, “Captain”. Thomas Block is still writing both fiction and non-fiction, and has edited and updated his earlier novels into ebooks in all the major formats and also into handsome full-sized (6″ by 9″ Trade Paperback) printed versions.

Block’s magazine writing began in 1968 and over the next five decades his work has appeared in numerous publications. He worked 20 years at FLYING Magazine as Contributing Editor, and as Contributing Editor to Plane & Pilot Magazine for 11 years. Block became Editor-at-Large for Piper Flyer Magazine and Cessna Flyer Magazine in 2001. During his long career as an aviation writer he has written on a wide array of subjects that range from involvement with government officials to evaluation reports on most everything that flies.

An airline pilot for US Airways for over 36 years before his retirement in April, 2000, Captain Thomas Block has been a pilot since 1959. Since 2002, he has lived on a ranch in Florida with his wife Sharon where they board, compete and train horses.

His latest book is the suspense/thriller novel, Captain.

Visit his website at

To purchase from Amazon:

To puchase a Kindle copy:

To purchase from Barnes and Noble:

To purchase from Smashwords:



Thomas Block has created ‘Captain’ – his most ambitious, intricate and action-packed aviation tale yet . It is a chilling and all-too-real story about a routine Trans-Atlantic airline flight that suddenly turns absolutely insane. In the doomed airliner’s cockpit, inside the passenger cabin and on the ground, a complex array of characters have been propelled at jet speed into a sudden and frantic race for survival.

‘Captain’ is about the individual and collective struggles of each of these men and women as they attempt to deal with and ultimately fight against the odds and circumstances that are stacked against them. Captainis a novel that pits man against man while also pitting man against machine. It is a story about the need for human judgments, hard-learned experiences, gut feelings and unbridled perseverance in an effort to rise up against a world where the strict adherence to written rules, regulations and procedures have been accepted as the norm.

‘Captain is about the way real airline pilots think, feel and react, especially after those giant airliners that they’ve strapped themselves to have suddenly turned vicious and unpredictable.

Dead Running/Dying to Run Promo and Giveaway

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 2, 2012 at 12:00 AM

Just in Time for Christmas 

Dead Running - Dying to Run 

Price Drop and $20 Gift Card Giveaway

Dead Running

Cassidy Christensen is running.

Running from the mercenaries who killed her parents.

Running from a scheming redhead intent on making her life miserable.

Running from painful memories that sabotage her dreams of happiness.

With two very tempting men competing for her attention, she hopes she'll finally have someone to run to, but can she trust either of them? When secrets from her past threaten her family, Cassidy decides to stop running and fight for her future.

Dying to Run

Cassidy Christensen wants to run.

Captured by the traffickers who killed her mother, her only hope is Dr. Tattoo, a man she loves but nobody trusts. When she finally gets a chance to run, someone else she cares about is taken. Running might be her only chance at survival, but she won’t allow another family member to be killed in her place.

This must-read sequel to Dead Running will have you laughing, biting your nails, and hoping for more.


Dead Running * Dying to Run

Author Cami Checketts

Cami Checketts is married and the proud mother of four future WWF champions. Sometimes between being a human horse, cleaning up magic potions, and reading Bernstein Bears, she gets the chance to write fiction.

Cami graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Exercise Science. Cami teaches strength training classes at her local rec and shares healthy living tips on her fitness blog:

Cami and her family live in the beautiful Cache Valley of Northern Utah. During the two months of the year it isn't snowing, she enjoys swimming, biking, running, and water-skiing.


Website * Blog * Twitter * Facebook * Fitness Blog



Upcoming Blog Tour

Price Drop Giveaway!

$20 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash from Author Cami Checketts

Ends 12/23/12

Open to anyone who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent's permission. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Have you seen the wonder of God in your life?

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on December 1, 2012 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Sometimes we wonder if we have ever seen the wonder of God in our own life?  The answer is yes and we don't even have to look all that hard to see it.  God's wonder is all around us and visible throughout the day.  A tiny bud breaking through on an early spring day.  The warmth of the sun on a cold winter morning.  The vast unknown of the night sky.  These all speak to the wonder of God.

At times His wonder sneaks up on us and we just have to stop what we are doing and stand in awe as we absorb the beauty of His hand in our life.  When we are feeling down and a friend calls because they just felt like they needed to see how we are doing, this is God's doing. 

The peace that fills your being when you sit outside and listen to the wind as it dances through the trees, stirring the leaves.  The helplessness of a newborn baby who is able to grasp the finger of their parent.  This all speaks to the wonder of God that fills our days.


My friend, Margaret Feinberg, has a new book and 7-session Bible Study called Wonderstruck: Awaken to the Nearness of God which is releasing Christmas Day —a personal invitation for you to toss back the covers, climb out of bed, and drink in the fullness of life. Wonderstruck will help you:


 Recognize the presence of God in the midst of your routine 

Unearth extraordinary moments on ordinary days

Develop a renewed passion for God

Identify what’s holding you back in prayer

Discover joy in knowing you’re wildly loved

To learn more, watch the Wonderstruck Video.

Follow Margaret’s snarky, funny, and inspirational posts on Twitter, Facebook, or her blog. You can learn more about this great book by visiting where she’s offering some crazy promos right now with up to $300 of free stuff.  

If you're like me and want to get a good deal, I’ve seen the book for as low as $7.57 ($14.99 retail) on Barnes & Noble.

So where have you seen the wonder of God in your life?

 If you look, you will see it!


The Christmas Star ~ Review

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on November 28, 2012 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)




The Christmas Star

By Ace Collins

Jimmy Reed is angry - angry at God, angry at Christmas.  But in his opinion his anger is justified, after all his father was killed in action and everyone else's is coming home. 

Three years ago Robert Reed was killed in the Philippines  Since then life has lost something for Jimmy and Christmas is just a reminder of what he has lost.  But this year, Jimmy is going to get even with Christmas, if only he can remember to forget who his father was.

But friends are reaching out to Jimmy, teaching him about the man his father was.  But Jimmy made a choice and is now regretting his rash decision.  Jimmy doesn't know who to turn to or how to get himself out this mess that he has become entangled in. 

When Jimmy discovers an old letter from his father his life is about to change.  But will he allow a message, written years ago, to heal his heart or will it drive him further into despair? 

But Robert Reed's life touched more people than Jimmy ever realized.  Two days before Christmas a solider tells Jimmy a different story about how his father died.  Robert died trying to save kids from Japanese bombers.

Christmas 1945 is one that Jimmy won't soon forget as he rediscovers hope!  The Christmas Star is a story that will touch your heart.  You will hurt with Jimmy as he struggles to come to terms with who he is and who he wants to become.  The Christmas Star will warm your heart and give you hope as Christmas comes to Ash Flats and the Reed household.

I received a copy of this title for the purpose of this review, but all opinions expressed are my own.

 About the author

Bestselling author Ace Collins has written more than fifty books including novels Farraday RoadSwope’s Ridge and Words of the Father, as well as the nonfiction Stories Behind The Best-Loved Songs of ChristmasgrAttitudes, and Lassie A Dog’s Life. His books have become movies and network television specials. He has appeared onGood Morning America, the NBC Nightly News and The Today Show and has been featured in the Distinguished Lecture Series at the National Archives in Washington D.C. Ace Collins has sold more than 1.5 million books during his career.

His latest book is the Christian holiday fiction, The Christmas Star.

You can visit Ace on the web at



Robert Reed gave his life for his country in the early days of World War II. His sacrifice was honored when his widow and son were presented with the Congressional Medal of Honor. Each Christmas the final decoration Madge Reed hangs on the family’s tree is that medal. Rather than being a symbol of honor for young Jimmy Reed that shining star represents loss, pain, and suffering.


Yet a letter delivered by one of Robert’s fellow soldiers and a mystery posed in that letter put a father’s sacrifice and faith into perspective and bring new meaning to not just the star hanging on the Christmas tree but the events of the very first Christmas. Then, when least expected, a Christmas miracle turns a final bit of holiday sadness into a joy that Jimmy has never known.

90 Days Thru the Bible ~ Review

Posted by bloomingwithbooks on November 25, 2012 at 11:30 PM Comments comments (0)




90 Days Thru the Bible

A Devotional Journey From Walk Thru The Bible

With Chris Tiegreen

Have you ever wanted to read through the Bible, but have never found the time?  Well, you can read through the Bible in 90 days with this devotional guide.  Days 1 - 56 are devoted to the Old Testament and Days 57 - 90 to the New Testament.  Some books of the Bible are spread out over several days while others are covered in just one day.

90 Days Thru the Bible is not an exhaustive study but it does provide a quick insight into the Bible.  At the back of this study is an Appendix that can be used for a small group discussion.  The discussion questions are arranged in a 13-week plan.  Weeks 1 - 8 covers the Old Testament and weeks 9 -13 covers the New Testament.

The Bible is God's story and it is our story.  The Bible explores our relationship with God and this study focuses on a few of the major themes found in it. God's plan to rescue us is the main theme that runs throughout the Bible and this journey.  We are taken from the very beginning of the Story all through the way to the end.  Will you become a part of the Story?  The choice is yours.

A few truths that you will come away with include the following:

Instead of obeying an external objective truth, we are inwardly transformed because it's our new nature.  This is an ideal that we are growing into. 

I Corinthians is written to new believers who have issues with their faith, they are self-centered and casual in their commitment and beliefs.

We can't lose heart when we have difficulties, we need to endure.  

God's timing is outside of our understanding.

When tragedy strikes, this isn't the end of the story but there is a lesson to be learned.

Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for the purpose of this review, all opinions expresses are my own.