Friday, July 31, 2015

"Where Trust Lies" by Janette Oke & Laurel Oke Logan

About this book:

  “Beth Thatcher returns home from her first year as a schoolteacher in the mining town of Coal Valley and steps into a whole different world. Her life back among her wealthy Eastern family is a stark contrast to her primitive life in the West, and Beth isn't sure where she belongs anymore.
  She barely has time to settle in before her mother announces plans for a family holiday--a luxurious steamship tour along the eastern coast of Canada and the U.S. Wishing to reconnect with her mother and sister, Beth agrees to go but quickly finds herself at odds with her mother's expectations. After enjoying complete freedom in the western wilds, Beth isn't sure what to make of her mother's ongoing efforts to direct her life--and her heart.
  Beth keeps in touch with her Mountie beau, Jarrick, even as young men more of her station catch her eye. Is she ready to fully give her heart to Jarrick, knowing it will mean saying good-bye to her family and her life of privilege once again? And when Beth trusts the wrong person, will Jarrick be able to help her despite the distance between them?”

Series: Book #2 in the “Return to the Canadian West” series. (Review of #1 Here!) {There is another series that follows Beth’s aunt, Elizabeth, called the “Canadian West” series. Read Reviews of #1 Here, #2 Here, #3 Here, #4 Here, #5 Here, and #6 Here.  You do not have to read the first series to understand this one, but it’s a great series to read. :) }

Spiritual Content- Many, many Prayers; Talks about God & trusting Him; ‘H’s are capital when referring to God; Many, many Scriptures are quoted & read; Bible reading; Mentions of those in the Bible; Church going & Mentions of Church going; Hymns are sung & played; Nick doesn’t believe in God.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: a ‘dumb’, a ‘stupid’ and two ‘gosh’s; Mentions of drinking & the prohibition; A mention of an attempted suicide.

Sexual Content- Julie gets two hand kisses, a boarder-line barely-above-not-detailed // semi-detailed kiss; Noticing; Embraces (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of flirting & a flirt; Girls are called dolls’, ‘scrumptious’ and ‘beauties’; A mention of human slavery; Nick doesn’t know his father; A mention of a woman who had a child without being married; Talks about marriage; Love, falling in love & the emotions.

-Beth Thatcher
                                         P.O.V. of Beth
                                              Set in the 1920s
                                                        332 pages

Pre Teens-
New Teens-
Early High School Teens- 
Older High School Teens-
My personal Rating-
Oh. Jarrick. *swoon* Can I just leave it at that? Hahaha! Really though, he was so sweet! While I think the first book in the series is a bit better, I did enjoy this one as well. Now just to wait for an announcement about a third book! Hint, hint! ;)
 Next Friday there wouldn’t be a new review, but a super-awesome post! ;D

See y’all on Monday with a new review!

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.
*I received this book for free from the Publisher (Bethany House Publishers) for this review.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

"The Curiosity Keeper" by Sarah E. Ladd

About this book:

  ““It is not just a ruby, as you say. It is large as a quail’s egg, still untouched and unpolished. And it is rumored to either bless or curse whomever possesses it.”
  Camille Iverness can take care of herself. She’s done so since the day her mother abandoned the family and left Camille to run their shabby curiosity shop on Blinkett Street. But when a violent betrayal leaves her injured with no place to hide, Camille has no choice but to accept help from the mysterious stranger who came to her aid.
  Jonathan Gilchrist never wanted to inherit Kettering Hall. As a second son, he was content working as a village apothecary. But when his brother’s death made him heir just as his father’s foolish decisions put the estate at risk, only the sale of a priceless possession—a ruby called the Bevoy—can save the family from ruin. But the gem has disappeared. And all trails lead to Iverness Curiosity Shop—and the beautiful shop girl who may or may not be the answer to his questions.
  Curious circumstance throws them together, and an intricate dance of need and suspicion leads the couple from the seedy backwaters of London to the elite neighborhoods of the wealthy to the lush, green Surrey countryside—all in the pursuit of a blood-red gem that collectors will sacrifice anything to possess.
  Caught at the intersection of blessings and curses, greed and deceit, two determined souls must unite to protect what they hold dear. But when a passion that shines far brighter than any gem is ignited, each will have to decide how much they are willing to risk for their future, love, and happiness.”

Series: Book #1 in the “Treasures of Surrey” series.

Spiritual Content- Romans 8:28 is read & quoted twice; Mentions of those in the Bible; Church going; At the beginning, Camille has a hard time believing that good happens to those who love the Lord;
*Note: A couple mentions of the devil; The Bevoy is rumored to bless or curse whoever has it.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: a ‘blasted’, a ‘dash it all’, an ‘Egad’, five ‘what/who/where/how in blazes’; Curses are said not written; A bit of sarcasm; Knives, blades, blood & pain (up to semi-detailed); Mentions of drinking (& drinking wine), drunks & taverns; Mentions of smoking & tobacco.
               *Note: “The impropriety of the act was d*mning.”.

Sexual Content- a forehead kiss, a barely-above-not-detailed kiss, a semi-detailed kiss, and a detailed kiss; Touches & Embraces (semi-detailed); Noticing & Staring; a ‘trollop’; Mentions of keeping the sexes separate at a school; A mention of how a man can get a woman to talk; Love, falling in love, & the emotions.

-Camille Iverness
-Jonathan Gilchrist
                                         P.O.V. switches between them.
                                              Set in 1812
                                                        334 pages

Pre Teens-
New Teens-
Early High School Teens-
Older High School Teens-
My personal Rating- 
I haven’t had the best of luck with Regency books, most I’ve read have quite a bit of Sexual Content. While “The Curiosity Keeper” was decent in that regard (somewhat), it was really lacking in the Spiritual Content. I most likely will finish this series, though, as the rest comes out. :)

See y’all on Friday with a new review!

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.
*I received this book for free from the Publisher (Thomas Nelson) through Litfuse Publicity Group for this review.

Monday, July 27, 2015

"Vanquished" by Katie Clark

{{This is an updated review. Originally posted July 27th, 2015, it was updated on January 10th, 2020 to the Official Rating System.}}

 About this book:

  “When Hana's mom is diagnosed with the mutation, she confesses to Hana she doesn't know what will happen if she dies. Fischer, a medic at the hospital, implies there is Someone who can help-but religion's been outlawed. Hana embarks on a dangerous journey, seeking the answers Fischer insists are available. But when the truth is uncovered, will Hana stick to what she's been taught? Or will she join the rebellion and take a stand against an oppressive society?”

Series: Book #1 in the “Enslaved” series.

Spiritual Content- A few Scriptures are read, mentioned, & discussed; Many t
alks about God, Jesus, the Bible, & what happens when we die; ‘H’s are capital when referring to God; Hana becomes very curious in what happens after you die for her mom’s sake and looks for the answer; Mentions of prayers & praying; Mentions of Bibles & Bible reading (and burning Bibles or books that deal with religion); Mentions of Heaven & Hell (and the thought that people are going to Hell because they haven’t ever heard there is a Hell);
             *Note: All religion is outlawed and it is mentioned to have caused division and wars prior to the dystopian time period of the story; Reincarnation is believed to be what happens after you die (told by the government, Hana has a hard time believing it); Meditation is required (Hana thinks it helps & mentions of it; semi-detailed); A few mentions of gods.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: a ‘shut up’, five forms of ‘dumb’, and twenty-two forms of ‘stupid’; A mention of using ‘hell’ as a curse word; Eye rolling & Sarcasm; Hana sneaks out (to learn about God) & lies (to guards to protect the group); Hana’s father threatens that he’ll turn in her if she doesn’t obey the law; All about mentions of cancer (called mutation), Hana’s mom being diagnosed with it, chemo drugs, radiation, dying, & deaths (up to semi-detailed): Mentions of injuries & pain (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of drugs & being addicted; Mentions of crimes, criminals, & stealing; Mentions of bullies & bulling (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of lies, lying, & liars; Mentions of rumors; Mentions of hatred; Mentions of throwing up; A few mentions of people killing others & murderers; A few mentions of threatening to execute someone; A few mentions of violence; A few mentions of alcohol & drinking; A few mentions of starvation; A couple mentions of wars; A couple mentions of a woman harming herself & bleeding (barely-above-not-detailed); A couple mentions of a place being set on fire; A couple mentions of a prison; A couple mentions of smoking; A couple mentions of jealousy;
             *Note: A mention of most pets ending up as meals during the winter months.

Sexual Content- It is illegal for teens of the opposite gender to be alone together and for a boy to touch a girl (it is said to be a form of birth control); A possible almost kiss (barely-above-not-detailed); Touches & Nearness (barely-above-not-detailed); Noticing; Many mentions of Hana’s best friend, Jamie, getting pregnant & how the government will force her to get an abortion (Hana does not believe that killing a little baby is the right thing and Jamie does not want to have an abortion, barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of sneaking out to meet a boy or girl; A few mentions of kisses, kissing, & imaging being kissed; A few mentions of a guy making comments towards Hana; A couple mentions of jealousy; Some boy trouble & emotions;
             *Note: A few mentions of birth control pills (which aren’t available, but Hana assumes if they were, they would be required to be on it); A mention of fresh underwear; A mention of butting into a conversation.

-Hana Norfolk, age 17
                                       1st person P.O.V. of Hana
                                                        271 pages

Pre Teens-
New Teens-
Early High School Teens-
Older High School Teens-
My personal Rating-
While this may seem like typical dystopian plot—religion outlawed, government says they know best, an upcoming rebellion, a possible love-triangle, and a main girl wanting to know what really is happening—it’s interesting and engaging to see how it all plays out. I think dystopian books are a favorite of mine because of the anticipation of if the rebellion will be successful. With Hana in this trilogy, we quickly see her passion and leadership skills but by the end of the book I can’t help but smirk at what she’ll do next. 
It’s been years since I read this trilogy, so most of this first book it was like reading it for the first time again. Definitely looking forward to rereading the other two books. 

See y’all on Wednesday with a new review!

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.