Monday, November 15, 2010

A Path Less Traveled

This sweet lady and author went to Wayland with Mark. I've read the first chapter of her book and can't wait to read it all! If you go to her blog, she is giving away a print copy and an e-copy of A Path Less Traveled for every 20 comments (by different people). So get over there and leave a comment!


Trish James is tired of being rescued. When a spooked horse claims her husband's life, she’s determined to blaze a path for herself and her traumatized son without outside help. But will that mean leaving the place etched on her heart?

Andy Tyler has had to struggle for everything, and starting a new law practice in Miller's Creek, Texas is no different. Though prepared for business challenges, he's not prepared for falling in love--especially with yet another woman who will probably abandon him for her career.

Will Andy and Trish be able to see past their limited human understanding to take . . . A Path Less Traveled?

To read the first chapter go here:


"This book was totally and completely enjoyable to read. I received the book on Friday and finished reading it on Sunday. I could hardly put it down. The storyline is very well written and grabbed my attention in the first chapter and never let me go....One of my favorite lines in the book is this: 'God doesn't waste any hurt you endure, Trish. What he allows into your life--even something as painful as Doc's death--He'll use for the days ahead...' I believe this is so true and have seen it played out in my life. I love it when I can read a really good fiction book and learn more about my relationship with Christ. I recommend this book to anyone looking for a good story to read. I can't wait until Book 3 in the series comes out next year." ~Cathy at Tales of the TCKK Family

"...Cathy Bryant weaves an amazing story. She has a maturity in her writing skill that astounds me for only having two published novels. A Path Less Traveled is a must read. Cathy realistically captures the struggle of the heart." ~ Linnette at Linnette's Writing Corner


Cathy Bryant is a former public school teacher who handed in her chalk for a private music studio and writing career. Her passion is to write heart-stirring stories that show God’s life-changing grace. Cathy is the owner of the popular blog, WordVessel, and has written devotions for The Upper Room magazine, two devotional books, and online devotional sites. She’s the wife of a music minister, the mother of two grown sons and a beautiful daughter-in-love, and the Nana of Harrisen. A Texas gal since birth, she lives in a century-old Texas farmhouse with her husband and a phobia-ridden cat.

Texas Roads (her debut novel and a 2009 ACFW Genesis finalist) released in March 2010. The second Miller’s Creek novel, A Path Less Traveled, was launched in November 2010. The Way of Grace will be available in 2011.

Visit her website at


Print Edition
Other eBook Editions (including online reading, iPad, Nook, Sony reader, & PDF)


Tuesday, November 9, 2010


I am so grateful that my joy does not depend upon wealth or circumstances. It isn't about obtaining or possessing things. Joy is so much more! It is the elation, the contentment, the peace, the privilege of being in God's presence.

You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence is fullness of joy,
at Your right hand there are pleasures forevermore.
Psalm 16:11

Father, thank You for Your power to bestow a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. May we as a family be as mighty oaks of righteousness planted by You simply used to bring You glory and display Your splendor. Help me to develop an outlook of gratitude and joy, may my life be spent in the joy of Your presence, praising You!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Amy Inspired by Bethany Pierce

After reading this book I have no idea how to rate it! On the one hand, it was comical and even engaging. At times I caught myself laughing and reading some great one liners out loud to my husband. Author Bethany Pierce had my attention early - in the prologue. I could easily picture a child with an over active imagination eating baby food all week while pretending to be an astronaut eating "moon food". Yet, on the other hand the book definitely had its faults. I felt blindsided with depressing information and a story line concerning breast cancer.

At times the author left me wondering what she was trying to say. For example, the main character Amy Gallagher believes that being opposed to two people of the opposite sex living together is legalistic. In the story, Eli, a 32 year old man is stranded and ends up staying in Amy's apartment. This temporary arrangement ends up being a semi-permanent set up. The story goes on to tell of the two sleeping together (no sex) and realizing the shame in that. But was the author showing that living together is a bad idea, or just using that situation to carry the story along? I'm not sure. There is at least one more example, but I'll stop there. Maybe the author simply failed to bring her points to a strong conclusion or maybe I just missed it. Is she trying to portray real life struggles with a Christian wrestling to do what is right rather than rebelling? Again, I'm not sure.

I'm disappointed that this book was labeled as a Christian novel. It falls short of being clear on the gospel and while there were no actual sex scenes it comes very close. One scene has Amy standing with only a bra and underwear, admitting to a boyfriend that she is a virgin. I will say that others are giving the book a very good rating so perhaps I'm being overly critical and prudish. You decide.
I must admit that I'm as ambiguous as Bethany Pierce because I think I can rate the book after all. Even though the book was entertaining and the author a good wordsmith I'd give it 2 out of 5 stars.
A big Thank you to Bethany House Publishing Group for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Hatteras Girl by Alice Wisler

Hatteras Girl tells the story of Jackie Donovan. Jackie is a journalist who has returned to her home at North Carolina's Outer Banks. Because she is nearing 30, her relatives have a goal to get an engagement ring on Jackie's finger by the end of the year. Jackie suffers through many blind dates trying to appease her loving, well meaning family. Jackie has a goal of her own, a seemingly impossible dream of owning and operating Bailey House, a million dollar bed and breakfast where Jackie and her best friend Minnie spent many delightful afternoons as school girls.

When Jackie is sent to interview Davis Erickson, she discovers that he owns Bailey House. Can she convince Davis that she and Minnie are the ideal people to run the bed and breakfast in the same loving way that his grandparents ran it?

I would give the book 4 out of 5 stars. I felt that parts of the tale (especially her love interests) were somewhat predictable. In the story Minnie faces the death of her husband and her mother's stroke while also raising her son alone. It at times feels a bit subdued with the responsibility she faces; yet it also portrayed friendship and their efforts to help and support each other in a positive light. All things considered, I would say it was well written and an enjoyable read.
You too can become a book reviewer! Go here to check it out!
Thank you to Bethany House Publishing Group for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Redeeming Love

I was excited when I was asked to choose any WaterBrook Multnomah title I have read and post a review. One of my favorite books of all time is Redeeming Love by
Francine Rivers. I'm sure it would make my top ten list! Even though I haven't read it in years , I still remember this story of God's enduring patience and grace.
The book is set in the 1850's of gold crazed California. Angel is sold into prostitution as a young girl and attempts to protect her heart by shutting down her emotions. Angel hides her real name as her own secret treasure . The fact that she learns to hate men is quite understandable. When she meets Michael Hosea he simply sits and talks to Angel. She is confused by his lack of ardor and uses scorn to guard herself. Michael, obeying God, marries Angel to protect her from further abuse and shows her unconditional love. After much prayer, he hears God tell him to "Feed my sheep". Michael sees what needs he has failed to meet in Angel and tries even harder to show his love.
As Angel begins to feel herself relax and trust Michael, she is hit with fear and overwhelming feelings of inadequacy and flees. Can she ever give the ultimate gift - the sharing of her real name, her trust? Her healing and ability to feel loved must ultimately come from God.
Redeeming Love is based upon the book of Hosea and is a wonderful picture of God's unconditional love. I must find my book and read it again soon!