Turtles in the Road Review

Lately my library has been buying more inspirational titles from smaller publishing houses so I’ve been trying to read more of them, and I’m so glad because I probably wouldn’t have picked this up otherwise! (The title and cover are a little kitschy for my taste…) Anyway, don’t let them deter you, Turtles in the Road is charming. Light-hearted, engaging, and hysterically funny!

Turtles in the Road: A Novel by [Rhea, Kaley, Rhea, Rhonda]

Sometimes a detour takes you exactly where you need to be.

Piper Cope was so sure the Lord called her to be a pastor’s wife. So when her pastor/fiancé breaks it off, she’s every kind of puzzled. Does God even have a purpose for her anymore? On the road halfway between the bridges she’s burned and some kind of new start, she encounters the most unexpected detour. She swerves on a rainy road to miss a turtle and ends up in a ditch with an airbag to the face. Now stuck in this little town, she wonders how in the world she could’ve gotten her God-signals so very crossed. And how in the world is she supposed to know what He wants her to do now? In the meantime, at least the community center guy, Jay Marler, has her working a temporary job there. Problem is, somehow she’s coaching a children’s basketball team. She does not…basketball. And she certainly does not children.

 

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Raven Fever

So my basic advice to ya’ll is to just buy whatever fantasy Bethany House decides to publish. I mean, they don’t publish a lot, but the ones they do are great. Karen Hancock, Patrick Carr, R. J. Larson*, Jill Williamson…oh look, a list of my favorite Christian fantasy authors!

Anyhoo, back to the point of this post, which is that Bethany House’s newest fantasy offering is The Ravenwood Saga by Morgan L. Busse.

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This is book 1. Isn’t that a great cover? It was amazing. Here’s the synopsis.

Lady Selene is the heir to the Great House of Ravenwood and the secret family gift of dreamwalking. As a dreamwalker, she can enter a person’s dreams and manipulate their greatest fears or desires. For the last hundred years, the Ravenwood women have used their gift of dreaming for hire to gather information or to assassinate.

As she discovers her family’s dark secret, Selene is torn between upholding her family’s legacy–a legacy that supports her people–or seeking the true reason behind her family’s gift.

Her dilemma comes to a head when she is tasked with assassinating the one man who can bring peace to the nations, but who will also bring about the downfall of her own house.

One path holds glory and power, and will solidify her position as Lady of Ravenwood. The other path holds shame and execution. Which will she choose? And is she willing to pay the price for the path chosen?

I just finished book 2 yesterday which just so happened to be its release date! Great timing huh?)

Flight of the Raven is a great follow-up to book 1. It isn’t quite as strong, but then it’s the 2nd in the trilogy right? Selene’s power is growing, but she’s feeling awfully confused by it. Her dreams are changing and strange things are happening. Selene is chasing knowledge of the Light and running from the specter of the Dark Lady. She’s also trying to figure out her new husband and this whole marriage thing. The exposition around the religious aspects are pretty good, but feel a little forced at times. I’m going to have a really hard time waiting to find out what happens!

*R. J. Larson is really Kacy Barnett-Gramckow, she writes super-cool biblical fiction.

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Plummet by Brandilyn Collins

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Plummet reminded me of why I love Brandilyn Collins so much. Cara’s new boss just killed someone. And he’s making her help hide the body. She has no one to turn to. I’m pretty hard on characters that find themselves in these type of situations. Why didn’t they just call the police? Run away? etc. But Collins has Cara tightly trapped and I was right with her every step of the way. (At least for the 2 hours it took me to finish the book…)

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New Adventures in Book Clubbing

So I started a new adventure at work and hosted my first Inspirational Fiction Book Club meeting today! I inherited this book club and I think the delightful attendees could run it without me which is perfectly fine. I really enjoyed the book club although the book wasn’t my favorite. (This might be due to my general aversion to all things Amish Fiction, not the actual quality of the book which is probably pretty good.) We discussed Return to Grace by Karen Harper. It is a mystery set in Ohio’s Amish Country. (Go figure, mysteries aren’t my favorite either so there you go.) The mystery was good, and the content a little edgier than you typically find in Amish fiction, but not too much so. I would recommend this for those that want to try Amish fiction, but are more turned off by the overtly religious aspects. The interactions between the Amish and “English” characters are interesting and the themes of forgiveness and being true to yourself run throughout the story.

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Hannah Esh fled the Home Valley Amish community with a broken heart, throwing herself into her worldly dreams of a singing career instead. But as much as she tries to run from her past, something keeps pulling her back. On a whim, she brings four worldly friends to the Amish graveyard near her family’s home for a midnight party on Halloween. But when shots are fired and one of her friends is killed, Hannah is pulled back into the world of her past.

The investigation into the shooting uncovers deep-buried secrets that shock the peaceful Amish village to its core. Determined to prove her value to the community she left behind, Hannah attempts to bridge two cultures, working closely with both handsome, arrogant FBI agent Linc Armstrong and her former betrothed, Seth Lantz, now widowed with a young daughter.

Caught between Seth and Linc, between old and new, Amish and worldly, Hannah must choose her future. Unless a killer, bent on secrecy, chooses it for her.

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New Megan Whalan Turner

EEEEEEEEEEEEPPPPPP!!!!!

I just put this on hold at my library!

The Queen’s Thief is one of those rare series where the sequels measure up to the first book. If you’ve not read The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner you should go do that. Right now. It’s INCREDIBLE.

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