I had a completely different set of books to review for this round of TTPT but given the events of the last week I decided that this grouping was more appropriate. Two of the books are as opposite as they can be with the exception of the authors being subjected to great trials and their reliance of their faith to see them through.
The 75 MPH winds that we weathered while hunkered down in a dark basement for over an hour with one nervous child and one sound asleep was quite surreal. To say I could relate to these two authors in a tiny way would be true - I prayed continuously for protection of our family and those being affected by the storm. Now I give thanks for our comfort and for the workers who are away from their families working in 100 degree temperatures. I pray for restoration of the power for the rest of our city (as of Sat. thousands are still without power) and for endurance for those who are still suffering in this heat.
What the authors of these books went through pales in comparison but what I do understand is the greatness of our God.
Series & Sequels
I Promised God is one of those books that I somehow stumbled upon and snatched it up only to forget about it on my shelf. (Please tell me you do that too). This is a book written from the heart. The author bears her soul and her family struggles in the hopes that their story will help others. I could not put it down.
"The goal of this book is to offer support and inspiration to hurting people by sharing our family's intimate story of personal trauma and long term, major illness. I promised God in prayer to chronicle our twenty-year tragedy and survival, in the hope that others might find strength in it to cope with crises in their own lives. My message is, "Don't give up. Seek support from the sterling people you'll find, but surrender the outcome to God's will. And pray for help to remember you did." "
The author herself has a fascinating background. From Amazon:
"Dinny Lawrance, pen name for Deon Lawrance Jaccard, is a published author, previously writing historical surveys. Lawrance is a graduate of Northwestern University. Following graduate studies at the University of Houston, Lawrance spent 33 years working in the education departments of art and history museums and in program development with an historic preservation organization. Before retiring, she spent 12 years applying her teaching creed---Education With Pleasure--to the development of Florida's first spoken history museum. Lawrance lives in Virginia with her husband."
I finished this book two weeks before were were to head to Amelia Island and lo and behold was able to visit the Amelia Island Museum of History which Lawrance founded, helped to grow and wrote about in her book. I love when things like that happen.
God Grew Tired of Us is yet another one of those that ended up on my shelf from unknown source sometime ago ... waiting for the right time to be picked up. We follow the author from about the age 13 up until his early 20's. You will be blown away at the injustice and unbelievable horrors of a civil war that he is thrown in the middle of. So why read this book? Because it's a true story. He is one of millions who have had their lives turned upside down; he is one of the lucky ones. I believe that God is using him for a greater purpose but you can read the book and make your own decision.
If you want to know more about what Dau is doing to help his country and fellow Lost Boys you can visit his web site here.
I received The Alchemist at a dirty Santa book swap. Thankfully it was my book club who all brought books they loved - everyone left happy ;-) This is a book I will read again. I read it so fast that I feel that I need to go back and savor it. I could have almost thrown this in with the Series & Sequels because there is a definite soul searching/defining theme.
" "My heart is afraid that it will have to suffer," the boy told the alchemist one night as they looked up at the moonless sky." Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams."
The Alchemist is the magical story of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who yearns to travel in search of a worldly treasure as extravagant as any ever found. From his home in Spain he journeys to the markets of Tangiers and across the Egyptian desert to a fateful encounter with the alchemist.
The story of the treasures Santiago finds along the way teaches us, as only a few stories have done, about the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, learning to read the omens strewn along life's path, and, above all, following our dreams."
Having an iPad allows me to have a Nook app so I often check out the Free Fridays. The Four Courners of the Sky was one of those freebies. This was an enjoyable book. The characters were interesting but at times I thought the book was a bit choppy. It was as if the author was trying to put too much into one story. Despite those minor flaws it was still a creative storyline.
"In small towns between the North Carolina Piedmont and the coast the best scenery is often in the sky. On flat sweeps of red clay and scrub pine the days move monotonously, safely, but above, in the blink of an eye, dangerous clouds can boil out of all four corners of the sky…The flat slow land starts to shiver and anything can happen. In such a storm, on Annie Peregrine's seventh birthday, her father gave her the airplane and minutes later drove out of her life.
Twenty years is a long time to be without a father, and, for Navy pilot Annie Peregrine-Goode, the sky has become a home the earth has never been. So when her father calls out of the blue to ask for a dying wish—one both absurd and mysterious—no is the easiest of answers. Until she hears that the reward is the one thing she always wanted …
Thus begins an enchanting novel that bursts with energy from the first pages, and sweeps you off on a journey of unforgettable characters, hilarious encounters, and haunting secrets."
A friend lent me this book; said it was one of her all time favorites. I can see why. Belong To Me is one of those books that makes you say to yourself "oh my - that could really happen". It is a touching story of love - of friendship - of commitment - of accidents. I don't think you all will be disappointed if you decide to pick this one up.
Thank you all for understanding the delay in posting and for your sweet comments about our well being.
Here's what you've been reading: