December 22, 2016

Book Review: Whatever Is Lovely


Whatever Is Lovely: A 90-Day Devotional Journal, by Allia Zobel Nolan is a delightful devotional journal book. 

As the title indicates, this book consists of 90 devotional journal entries. These devotionals are divided into the following sections: You and Your Thoughts, Whatever's True, Whatever's Noble, Whatever's Right, Whatever's Pure, Whatever's Lovely, Whatever's Admirable, Whatever's Excellent, Whatever's Praiseworthy, and Perfect Peace.

Each of the 90 devotions feature a scripture verse, title and devotional text, as well as the following: Food for Thought, Second Thoughts, Divine Thoughts, and Your Thoughts with blank lines to journal.  

According the the back cover, these "devotions will show you how to fill your head and your heart with virtues taken straight from Philippians 4:8, helping you grow closer to God and the amazing life he intends for you."

Whatever Is Lovely is an enjoyable devotional journal book, and it's geared towards girls, particularly junior high and high school ages. 

"Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." Philippians 4:8


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.  

December 18, 2016

Book Review: Where Does Love Hide



Where Does Love Hide? is A Lift-the-Flap Book that's written by Mary Manz Simon and illustrated by Hannah Wood. 

In the Note to Parents section, the author shares, "Through everyday activities, such as those shown in Where Does Love Hide?, a child learns the joy of giving and receiving love." In less than twenty pages, the question--where does love hide--is repeated throughout this book with a different answer on every page.
 
As an interactive story, there is text listed on one side of the page and the rest of the text is hidden under a flap on the connecting page. In addition, this book features adorable illustrations.

This easy-to-read board book is a charming children's book, which is geared toward toddlers and preschoolers.


Note: I received this book from Tyndale Blog Network, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

December 9, 2016

Book Review: Red-Blooded American Male


Red-Blooded American Male: Photographs, by Robert Trachtenberg is a delightfully interesting portrait photography book.

According to the inside cover: "From leading men to comedians, ballet dancers to quarterbacks, war veterans to Broadway veterans, Red-Blooded American Male features more than 100 imaginative, striking...portraits from award-winning photographer.... Trachtenberg also gives you a peek behind the curtain of a famed portrait photographer's creative process with captions that reveal how careful planning, dedication, and creative spontaneity result in iconic images."

In this book, the photographs are quite intriguing, and the quick commentaries, regarding insight into the photographs and subject matter, are amusing and interesting. The Introduction consists primarily of an interview by Jess Cagle, the editorial director of People and Entertainment Weekly magazines, interviewing Trachtenberg about his photographs and this book.

Despite the title, this book also features various nationalities other than American, as well as a few women in the photographs. On page 2, Trachtenberg shares that "the title is meant in a completely tongue-in-cheek, take-none-of-this-too-seriously, nationality-neutral way."

Red-Blooded American Male: Photographs is geared towards adults, from college age to older generations, especially recommended for those interested in unique portrait photography. 


Note: I received this book from Blogging for Books, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

December 5, 2016

Book Review: Simple Pursuit



Simple Pursuit: A Heart After Jesus is a devotional book by the Passion Movement with introductions written by Louie Giglio, Chris Tomlin, David Crowder, and Matt Redman. 

While the introductions throughout this book have been written by Giglio, Tomlin, Crowder, and Redman, the devotionals have been written by over 75 contributing writers from across the world (particularly the United States) and from the age range of 18 to 25 years old. 

According to the back cover: "Each day of this yearlong journey will inspire you to perfect the pause, allowing God to break through the noise of this world with the truth of His Word.... Through each day's Scripture, reflection, and prayer, you will begin to see the big story Jesus is writing for your life and the great opportunity you have to be a part of something bigger than yourself--building His kingdom!" 

This book is divided into five main sections, and each section focuses on one of the five statements in the 268 Declaration, which is also included. Each devotional features the day number, title, scripture verse, devotional text, and prayer. Since each devotional is listed by day (such as Day 54), it's easy to start reading this book at any time.

The 268 Declaration is based on Isaiah 26:8, as well as the main theme of the Passion Movement. According to page IX, Giglio shared, "Flowing out of this verse we shaped the  268 Declaration, five statements that describe what it looks like to walk out this proclamation as we seek to spread the fame of Jesus far and wide."   

Simple Pursuit: A Heart After Jesus is written primarily by teenagers and young adults, as well as geared for their peers, yet it's an enjoyable book for most ages. With one devotional per page, this book is a wonderful way to start setting aside a few minutes each day to read and reflect on the Scriptures or it's easily supplemented into on-going personal devotional time.

"Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desire of our hearts."  Isaiah 26:8


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

December 2, 2016

Audiobook Review: Junie B. Jones

 
Junie B. Jones is a delightful children's book series by Barbara Park. The audiobook, Junie B. Jones: First Grader (at last!), is written by Park and read by Lana Quintal. Also, it's the Junie B. Jones First Ever Musical Edition with lyrics by Marcy Heisler and music by Zina Goldrich.

This audiobook consists of two compact discs with 1 1/2 hours of listening time. The first CD features Junie B. Jones: First Grader (at last!), and the second CD includes all 15 songs from Junie B. Jones: The Musical, which is adapted from four Junie B. Jones books, including First Grader (at last!).

According to the back cover: "Being in first grade means having to get used to a whole new classroom. And a whole new teacher. And a whole new bunch of strange children. But here's the worst thing of all: when Junie B. tries to read words on the chalkboard...she can't! Is it possible that Junie B. needs glasses?"

Junie B. Jones: First Grader (at Last!), First Ever Musical Edition is recommended and geared towards young readers, particularly ages six to nine. However, this audiobook with the accompanying musical is fun for various ages.


Note: I received this book from Blogging for Books, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

November 25, 2016

Book Review: The Beginner's Bible


The Beginner's Bible: NIrV Holy Bible is a New International Reader's Version Bible, and it's a wonderful biblical resource with interesting full-color illustrations.

In addition to the Old and New Testaments, this Bible features the following sections: Books of the Bible in Alphabetical Order, Getting to Know Jesus, A Word About the NIrV, Dictionary, and 150 Famous Bible Stories checklist.

According to A Word About the NIrV, the NIrV is "based on the NIV," yet there are adjustments to sentence length, replaced difficult to comprehend words, etc. "We wanted to make the NIrV very easy to read and understand."

The NIrV is geared towards "people who are just starting to read...children...older people who are learning how to read...people who are reading the Bible for the first time...people who have a heard time understanding what they read...and...people who use English as their second language," as shared in A Word About the NIrV.

The Beginner's Bible: NIrV Holy Bible is recommended and geared towards young readers, yet it's relatable for all ages.


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

November 22, 2016

Book Review: Impact for Living Men's Devotional


The One Year Impact for Living Men's Devotional: Daily Coaching for a Life of Significance is a devotional book by Scott Whitaker and Nathan Whitaker. The books in The One Year series are considered "do-able daily devotions."

According to the back cover: "All of us have been created by God for impact--a unique impact in this world. But too often we're distracted from the eternal significance of our actions by the more alluring paths of power, wealth, image, and status. This daily devotional will help you to focus on your eternal legacies--what you can do each day when you understand your God-given purpose, potential, passion, and platform." And each devotion features one of the words--purpose, potential, passion, or platform--at the top of the page. 

Each daily devotion includes the date, title, scripture verses (or occasionally an inspirational quote), devotional text, and Impact Application, which features statements and/or questions to contemplate and put into action. Since the devotions are listed by date, it's ideal to start this devotional on January 1, yet readers may easily start the devotional at any time throughout the year.
 
The One Year Impact for Living Men's Devotional is geared towards men of various ages, from young adults to older generations. With one devotional per page, this book is a great way to start setting aside a few minutes each day to read and reflect on the Scriptures or it's ideal to supplement into on-going personal devotional time.


Note: I received this book from Tyndale Blog Network, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

November 17, 2016

Book Review: The Lord's Prayer



The Lord's Prayer: Words of Hope and Happiness is a children's board book written by Rick Warren and illustrated by Richard Jesse Watson.

On the last page, the author shares, "Prayer is just talking to God. Even though we cannot see God, he is always near, and God loves to hear our prayers. We can talk to God anywhere, and we can talk to him about anything.... God always understands."

Within about twenty-five pages, this board book presents prayers in an easy-to-read manner for young children. It features vibrant and beautiful illustrations to enjoy while reading the Lord's Prayer, as well as the corresponding prayer that enhances this scripture passage. 

The Lord's Prayer is from Matthew 6:9b-13: "Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen."

The Lord's Prayer: Words of Hope and Happiness is geared towards young readers, particularly toddlers and preschoolers. However, it's a wonderful book for all ages to read.


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

November 14, 2016

Book Review: Grace for the Moment


Grace for the Moment: Inspirational Thoughts for Each Day of the Year, by Max Lucado is a highly recommended devotional book, which features excerpts from about twenty of the author's books.

This devotional book is similar to the previously released pocket-sized version, yet it's considered to have "easy-to-read comfort-size print." The book's larger size and larger print is ideal for adults, particularly older generations, yet all ages groups would benefit from this encouraging and inspirational devotional book.

According to the back cover copy, "Let God's love comfort you and guide you. Let his daily grace happen to you--a grace that will change you, shape you, and lead you to a life that is eternally altered."

Each daily devotion features a scripture verse and devotional text. In addition, there are scripture passages and inspirational materials included throughout this book. Since the devotions are listed by date, it's easier to start this book on January 1, yet readers may start reading at any time throughout the year.

With one devotional per page, Grace for the Moment is a wonderful way to start setting aside a few minutes each day to read and reflect on the Scriptures or it's easily supplemented into on-going personal devotional time.

In the Preface, Lucado shares "to you, the reader. How kind of you to invite me into your world. May God use these daily encounters to give you more of him--to give you grace for the moment."


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

November 10, 2016

Book Review: Read and Play Baby Bible


Read and Play Baby Bible is a charming, yet informative children's book with lovely illustrations.

This book features summarized biblical stories that are relatable for children, as well as interactive activities to make learning about God's word even more enjoyable. In 46 pages, there are 22 Bible stories from Genesis, Exodus, Ruth, 1 Samuel, Esther, Daniel, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and Revelation.

According to the back cover: "Cuddle up, read, play--repeat! With fun stories written just for little ones and activities like tickling bellies and singing along with David and his harp, children won't just learn God loves and cares about them...they'll experience it!"

The Read and Play Baby Bible is an easy-to-read board book, and it's geared toward young children, particularly preschoolers to third graders.


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

November 7, 2016

Book Review: A Minute of Vision for Men

 
A Minute of Vision for Men: 365 Motivational Moments to Kick-Start Your Day, by Roger Patterson is a challenging and encouraging devotional book for men, and it's structured for the reader to only spend about a minute to two each day reading the daily devotional.

In the Introduction, the author stated, "My hope is that this book will share timely wisdom in such a time-constrained world. These daily minutes are drawn from sports headlines, from moments with my wife or kids, and from Scripture. For the last few years, I've had the privilege of sharing these one-minute daily thoughts on the radio.... One of the passions driving this project is my desire to engage men where they're at while also helping them succeed spiritually."
 
Each daily devotion features the devotional text and scripture verse. Since the devotions are listed by date, it's ideal to start this devotional on January 1, yet readers may start the devotional at any time throughout the year.

A Minute of Vision for Men is geared towards men at a variety of ages, from young adults to older generations. With one devotional per page, this book is a wonderful way to start setting aside a few minutes each day to read and reflect on the Scriptures or it's easily supplemented into on-going personal devotional time.


Note: I received this book from Tyndale Blog Network, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

November 4, 2016

Book Review: Devotions for a Deeper Life


Devotions for a Deeper Life: A Daily Devotional is an enjoyable and encouraging book by Oswald Chambers and edited by Glenn D. Black.

In the Foreword, Black shares that "the writings of Oswald Chambers contained in this volume were excerpted from these articles in God's Revivalist.... Chambers is respected as an effective expositor of the Word of God, a prolific writer, and a practical Christian teacher whose disciplined mind explored the rich, redemptive truths of our Lord Jesus Christ.... I commend this volume as a spiritual aid to all who seek to be more like Christ in Spirit-filled living for Him."

Each daily devotion features a scripture verse, devotional text, prayer thought, and suggested reading biblical passage. Also, there's a Scripture Index included at the back of this book. Since the devotions are listed by date, it's ideal to start this devotional on January 1, yet readers may start reading at any time throughout the year.

The Devotions for a Deeper Life is geared towards various age groups, from young adults to older generations. With one devotional per page, this book may easily be added to your current personal devotional time or it's a a great way to start setting aside time each day to spend with God.


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

November 2, 2016

Book Review: Little Book of God's Love


Precious Moments: Little Book of God's Love, by Jean Fischer is an adorable children’s book.

With the focus of God's love, this book features plenty of prayers, poems, and scripture verses to read. For example, on the first page, Inside My Heart states that "God lives here inside my heart, and in my heart He'll stay to fill me up with His great love each and every day." 

The back cover shares, "Through these sweet poems and prayers, and the classic Precious Moments artwork, celebrate with your little one how we can receive and share God's amazing love."

This easy-to-read board book is a charming children's book, which is geared toward toddlers and preschoolers.


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

October 26, 2016

Book Review: 365 Devotions for Finding Rest


365 Devotions for Finding Rest, by Christina Vinson is an encouraging and worthwhile daily devotional book.

In the Introduction, the author shared, "These days, rest can seem elusive. It appears more like a mirage than something we can fully experience, and when we do experience some sort of rest, it often feels too short.... If you're searching for a way to rest--if you're looking to satisfy the deep, God-given yearning in your soul and to quiet the buzzing in your mind that comes from too much activity and not enough downtime--this devotional is for you."

Each daily devotion features the title, scripture verse, devotional text, and quick prayer for each day of the year. Also, there's a Scripture Index at the end of the book. It's ideal to start this devotional on January 1, yet readers may start reading at any time throughout the year.

There are 365 devotions focused on rest, since the "Lord Jesus spoke candidly about the topic of rest," said Vinson in the Introduction. "He [Jesus] knew that we humans would struggle over and over to get the rest we need.... When He says you will find rest for your soul, you will.... Before beginning this journey, ask the Lord to reveal Himself and His truth to you like never before. And ask Him to show you how to live a restful life 365 days of the year."

The 365 Devotions for Finding Rest is geared towards various age groups, from teenagers to older generations, particularly women, yet even men would benefit from reading this devotional. With one devotional per page, this book may easily be added to your current personal devotional time or it's a a great way to start setting aside time each day to spend with God.


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Book Review: The Lord's Prayer

 
 
The Lord's Prayer: Words of Hope and Happiness is a children's book written by Rick Warren and illustrated by Richard Jesse Watson.

In the preface, Rick Warren shares "teaching children to trust God through prayer, and praying with them, is not just our responsibility--it is one of life's great privileges.... It is my prayer for you that reading this book with your children and praying the Lord's Prayer together will become a meaningful bedtime ritual, a treasured memory, and a lasting legacy that bears good fruit for generations to come."

In about thirty pages, this book presents prayers in an easy-to-read manner for young children. It features vibrant and beautiful illustrations to enjoy while reading the Lord's Prayer, as well as the corresponding prayer that enhances this scripture passage. 

The Lord's Prayer is from Matthew 6:9b-13: "Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen."

The Lord's Prayer: Words of Hope and Happiness is geared towards young readers, particularly ages four to eight. However, this book is a wonderful resource for all ages!


Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

October 24, 2016

Book Review: God Bless My Friends




God Bless My Friends is an adorable children's book written by Hannah C. Hall and illustrated by Steve Whitlow. It's a sweet story about being friends, which is shared within twenty pages.
 
According to the back cover, "Big and small, short and tall, fluffy and prickly...these playmates of all shapes and sizes are the best of friends. Share some giggles with your little one about how fun friendships--and differences--can be."

God Bless My Friends is easy to read in one storytelling session, and it's geared towards babies, toddlers, and even preschoolers. Highly recommend adding this board book to your child's book collection.

Note: I received this book from Book Look Bloggers, which is a program designed for bloggers to write book reviews in exchange for books, yet the opinions expressed in this review are my own.