Tag Archives: Biblical fiction

2022 Christy Award Finalists

11 Oct

Image Credit: The Christy Awards

Congratulations to all the fabulous authors who are 2022 Christy Award Finalists. I’ve read several of these books, including 4 that were my book club’s choices. All look so good! You are welcome for the additions to your TBR pile! 😉

Romance

All That Really Matters by Nicole Deese

Bookshop by The Sea by Denise Hunter

Husband Auditions by Angela Ruth Strong

First Novel

All That Is Secret by Patricia Raybon

Recorder by Cathy McCrumb

Sugar Birds by Cheryl Grey Bostrom

General Fiction

The Letter Keeper by Charles Martin

The Secret Keepers of Old Depot Grocery by Amanda Cox

Under the Magnolias by T. I. Lowe

Historical

Between The Wild Branches by Connilyn Cossette

Drawn by The Current by Jocelyn Green

The Widows of Champagne by Renee Ryan

Yours Is The Night by Amanda Dykes

Mystery/Suspense/Thriller

Aftermath by Terri Blackstock

The Barrister And The Letter of Marque by Todd M. Johnson

On The Cliffs of Foxglove Manor by Jaime Jo Wright

Speculative

A Time to Seek by Tracy Higley

Dark Intercept by Brian Andrews and Jeffrey Wilson

Recorder by Cathy McCrumb

Windward Shore by Sharon Hinck

Historical Romance

As Dawn Breaks by Kate Breslin

Hope Between The Pages by Pepper Basham

Shadows of Swanford Abbey by Julie Klassen

Until Leaves Fall in Paris by Sarah Sundin

Short Form

A Texas Christmas Carol by Karen Witemeyer (in Under The Texas Mistletoe collection)

False Pretense by Heather Day Gilbert

Mr. Nicholas by Christopher de Vinck

Young Adult

A Gentle Tyranny by Jess Corban

Realms of Light by Sandra Fernandez Rhoads

Shadow by Kara Swanson

Top 10 Tuesday — Geographical Titles

13 Sep

Happy Tuesday! Surprise, surprise! I am actually sticking to the topic today. It was fun looking back at the books I’ve read to find titles (and covers!) that could be found on a map, albeit a fictional one. 😉 Many genres are represented. I hope you find a book to love!

For more geographical titles, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top 10 Geographical Titles

Blackberry Beach by Irene Hannon

Bookshop by The Sea by Denise Hunter

Bride of A Distant Isle by Sandra Byrd

The Deadly Shallows by Dani Pettrey

The House at The End of The Moor by Michelle Griep

A Light on A Hill by Connilyn Cossette

On The Cliffs of Foxglove Manor by Jaime Jo Wright

A Silver Willow by The Shore by Kelli Stuart

Under The Bayou Moon by Valerie Fraser Luesse

Wonderland Creek by Lynn Austin

Dead Sea Conspiracy Blog Tour And Giveaway!

18 Aug

Dead Sea Conspiracy JustRead Blog Tour
Welcome to the Blog Tour for Dead Sea Conspiracy by Jerry B. Jenkins, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Dead Sea Conspiracy

Title: Dead Sea Conspiracy
Series: Dead Sea Chronicles #2
Author: Jerry B. Jenkins
Publisher: Worthy Books
Release Date: August 23, 2022
Genre: Christian Suspense, Dual Timeline (Biblical & Contemporary)

In Book 2 of the Dead Sea Chronicles, archaeologist Nicole Berman is about to discover the key to unifying three major religions, if a dangerous and evil enemy doesn’t stop her first.

She is the first woman to be awarded a permit to lead a dig in Saudi Arabia and believes what she hopes to discover has the power to rewrite history. She assembles a team that will ultimately surprise – and in some cases – betray her. In a parallel storyline, readers are launched back to ancient Ur where young Abram is sent to learn from his forebears, who tell him firsthand stories of being on the ark during the Great Flood.

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indie Bound | Christianbook | BookBub

EXCERPT

When they arrived a few minutes later, Nicole found beautiful Kayla’s cheeks wet, and she seemed unable to look Nicole in the eye. Her mother’s doctor pointed her and her father to chairs in a small conference room. Kindly yet directly, he said, “There’s no easy way to break this to you, but your wife and mother took a sudden turn for the worse this morning and passed less than an hour ago.”

Impossible, Nicole thought. “She was perfectly fine last night! What happened?”

Benzion stood quickly. “I want to see her.”

 “Let’s let them make her presentable, and—”

“Right now,” Ben said.

Nicole had shared her father’s urgency but now remained haunted by the pained expression she found on the face she had come to cherish over the years—as if her mother had fought for a last breath. There had been no signs of trauma or danger for days. Nicole couldn’t make it compute, and her father seemed on the verge of a breakdown. “How does something like this happen?” he asked the doctor, his voice constricted. “No warnings from all these machines?”

MORE BOOKS IN THIS SERIES

Dead Sea Rising


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jerry Jenkins

Jerry B. Jenkins‘ books have sold more than 73 million copies. Twenty-one of his titles have reached the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, and Wall Street Journal best-seller lists. The phenomenally best-selling Left Behind series inspired several movies, one starring Nicolas Cage and another starring Kevin Sorbo. Jenkins has been featured on the cover of Newsweek and his writing has appeared in Time, Reader’s Digest, Guideposts, and dozens of other periodicals. Jenkins owns the Jerry Jenkins Writers Guild, through which he trains thousands of aspiring writers. He is a member of the Colorado Authors Hall of Fame and chairs the Creative Writing major at Colorado Christian University. He and his wife, Dianna, have three grown sons, including Dallas, creator and director of The Chosen TV series.

Connect with Jerry by visiting jerryjenkins.com to follow him on social media or subscribe to email newsletter updates.


TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive signed & personalized copies of Dead Sea Rising (paperback), Dead Sea Conspiracy (hardcover), and a $50 Visa gift card.
(9) additional winners will receive signed & personalized copies of Dead Sea Rising (paperback) and Dead Sea Conspiracy (hardcover).

Dead Sea Conspiracy JustRead Giveaway

Full tour schedule linked below. The giveaway begins at midnight August 16, 2022 and will last through 11:59 PM EST on August 23, 2022. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

First Line Friday — The Apostle’s Sister

27 May

Happy Friday all! Today I am featuring a Biblical novel by Angela Hunt, The Apostle’s Sister. I love how Hunt blends scriptural truths, historic and cultural details, and a what-if story to create great fiction. Book 4 in the Jerusalem Road series, it is due to release on June 7.

Here’s the first line:

Aya, daughter of Zebulon of Tarsus, does not want a traditional life. Because she has always lived in the shadow of her brilliant brother, she wants to use her gifts and be something more than a wife and mother. When her traditional father insists she marry Avidan, a Torah student, she reluctantly agrees, but when Avidan leaves for Jerusalem, she seizes an opportunity to fulfill her deepest yearning, realizing she may never have another chance to do so. 

After moving to Jerusalem, she expects to be bored in her role as wife to a Torah student, but finds herself fascinated by her husband’s studies. And when her brother Sha’ul makes a life-altering decision, she finds herself faced with a troubling question: How can she remain true to all she’s been taught since infancy and still love her blasphemous brother?

Top 10 Tuesday — Book Quote Freebie!

24 May

*****

I read all parts of a book. That’s right — the prologue, the afterword, even the copyright page 😉 . I also read epigraphs — any quotes that the author chooses to begin the story. Many authors choose scripture or a quote that gives some insight into what their book is all about. I like to keep them in mind as I delve into the stories. Today I am sharing those quotes from random books on my shelves. In the cases of the author using several quotes, I randomly chose just one. Lots of genres represented — enjoy!

For more bookish quotes, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Epigraphs — Quotes That Authors Chose to Begin Their Stories

***************

Yet he commanded the skies above and opened the doors of heaven, and he rained down on them manna to eat and gave them the grain of heaven. Man ate of the bread of angels.

Psalm 78:23-25

*****

I speak of peace, while covert enmity

Under the smile of safety wounds the world

William Shakespeare, King Henry IV, Part 2

*****

“I once was lost, but now I am found, was blind, but now I see.”

John Newton

*****

I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

John 15:5

*****

Love is not consolation. It is light.

Simone Weil

*****

Defend the weak and the fatherless; uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed.

Rescue the weak and the needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.

Psalm 82:3-4

*****

Loose yourself from the chains around your neck, O captive daughter of Zion.

Isaiah 52:2

*****

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:38-39

*****

There’s a bit of magic in everything

And then some loss to even things out.

Lou Reed

*****

It is necessity and not pleasure that compels us.

Dante, The Inferno

Top 10 Tuesday — Biblical Fiction

5 Apr

Happy Tuesday! Today I am featuring Biblical Fiction — books set during the Old or New Testament — that are on my TBR shelf. These are physical copies that I own. I have lots more on my Kindle. Why do I read Biblical Fiction? I like how an author brings to life the culture of the time and also makes me aware of things I don’t always see when reading Scripture. Instead of keeping me from opening my Bible, these novels draw me more into God’s word. I use many of the books for a Bible Study/Book Club I periodically lead at my church. We study scripture for 4-6 weeks, then have an evening discussion of a story inspired by what we have studied. It combines my love of fiction with the truths found in the Bible. Win-win.

The books on my list today are those I have not read yet, but need to. If you have read any of these, let me know what you thought. 🙂

For more great book lists, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top 10 Biblical Fiction on My TBR Shelf

The Prince And The Prodigal by Jill Eileen Smith

Joseph is the pampered favorite son of the patriarch Jacob. His older brothers, deeply resentful of his status in the family, take advantage of the chance to get rid of him, selling him to slave traders and deceiving their father about his fate. It seems like their troubles are over. But for Joseph and older brother Judah, they are just beginning.

While Joseph is accused of rape and imprisoned, Judah attempts to flee the memory of his complicity in the betrayal of his younger brother. After decades apart, the brothers will come face-to-face in a stunning role reversal that sees Joseph in a position of great power while Judah begs for mercy. Will forgiveness or vengeance win the day?

Bestselling and award-winning author Jill Eileen Smith brings her considerable research and imaginative skills to bear in this vivid retelling of one of the most popular stories found in Scripture–a story of jealousy, betrayal, and a reconciliation that only God could bring about.

Counted Among The Stars by Connilyn Cossette

Sold into slavery by her father and forsaken by the man she was supposed to marry, young Egyptian Kiya must serve a mistress who takes pleasure in her humiliation. When terrifying plagues strike Egypt, Kiya is in the middle of it all.

To save her older brother and escape the bonds of slavery, Kiya flees with the Hebrews during the Great Exodus. She finds herself utterly dependent on a fearsome God she’s only just beginning to learn about, and in love with a man who despises her people. With everything she’s ever known swept away, will Kiya turn back toward Egypt or surrender her life and her future to Yahweh?

The Priest by Francine Rivers

His courage covered his brother’s fear.
His sacrifices atoned for the people’s sin.
His voice carried the words of God.


Moses parted the Red Sea. But in his shadow stood Aaron, a man who symbolizes forever our great High Priest. Be challenged by this faithful man whose story we must never forget.

The Priest is the story of Aaron and book one in the popular Sons of Encouragement series about five men who quietly changed eternity.

Unashamed by Francine Rivers

She was a woman with a past to whom God gave a future.

Meet Rahab, one of the five women in the lineage of Christ. Exploited by men who saw only her beauty, she held fast to her faith in an all-powerful God and was rewarded by being grafted into the family tree of the Messiah. In Rahab’s compelling story, discover the overwhelming truth that God seeks and finds those whose hearts are tender toward Him, no matter how far away they are.

Unashamed is book two in the popular Lineage of Grace series about five unlikely women who changed eternity.

Isaiah’s Daughter by Mesu Andrews

In this epic Biblical narrative, ideal for fans of The Bible miniseries, a young woman taken into the prophet Isaiah’s household rises to capture the heart of the future king. 
 
Isaiah adopts Ishma, giving her a new name–Zibah, delight of the Lord–thereby ensuring her royal pedigree. Ishma came to the prophet’s home, devastated after watching her family destroyed and living as a captive. But as the years pass, Zibah’s lively spirit wins Prince Hezekiah’s favor, a boy determined to rebuild the kingdom his father has nearly destroyed. But loving this man will awake in her all the fears and pain of her past and she must turn to the only One who can give life, calm her fears, and deliver a nation. 

Love in A Broken Vessel by Mesu Andrews

Hosea has been charged by God with a difficult task–marry a prostitute in order to show God’s people the nature and depth of his love for Israel. When Hosea goes to Israel to proclaim God’s message, the prostitute God tells him to marry turns out to be his childhood friend Gomer. He finds her broken and abused, unwilling to trust Hosea or his God. But when marrying Hosea becomes her only choice, Gomer does what she’s good at–she survives. Can Hosea’s love for God and God’s love for Israel heal Gomer’s broken spirit?

With her potent combination of in-depth research and masterful storytelling, Mesu Andrews brings to life a complex and fascinating biblical story of the power of love and forgiveness in the face of utter betrayal.

Of Fire and Lions by Mesu Andrews

Survival. A Hebrew girl first tasted it when she escaped death nearly seventy years ago as the Babylonians ransacked Jerusalem and took their finest as captives. She thought she’d perfected in the many years amongst the Magoi and the idol worshippers, pretending with all the others in King Nebuchadnezzar’s court. Now, as Daniel’s wife and a septuagenarian matriarch, Belili thinks she’s safe and she can live out her days in Babylon without fear–until the night Daniel is escorted to Belshazzar’s palace to interpret mysterious handwriting on a wall. The Persian Army invades, and Bellili’s tightly-wound secrets unfurl with the arrival of the conquering army. What will the reign of Darius mean for Daniel, a man who prays to Yahweh alone?

Ultimately, Yahweh’s sovereign hand guides Jerusalem’s captives, and the frightened Hebrew girl is transformed into a confident woman, who realizes her need of the God who conquers both fire and lions.

Magdalene by Angela Hunt

Mary Magdalene
The controversial woman with a past only one Man could forgive. A true love story that changed the face of history.

“I was Miryam of Magdala, seller of fine fabrics and wife of Yaakov the fisherman. With my husband and son, I held a place of honor among my countrymen until a company of rogue soldiers took everything from me. I might not be Roman, but I knew injustice when I saw it. And I had been most grievously wronged.”

In an era when women are sequestered and silenced, Miryam of Magdala lives a contended life until her son’s careless gesture evokes a hostile action that shatters her serenity. With no hope of justice, Miryam commits an unthinkable act…and descends into depths of darkness that threaten her life and her sanity.

Even after Yeshua the Messiah dramatically restores her life, Miryam can neither forget nor forgive unresolved injustices. Prodded by a hunger for vengeance she will not deny, this woman of uncommon courage risks her life and her heart by drawing destiny into her own hands.

Bread of Angels by Tessa Afshar

Purple. The foundation of an influential trade in a Roman world dominated by men. One woman rises up to take the reins of success in an incredible journey of courage, grit, and friendship. And along the way, she changes the world.

But before she was Lydia, the seller of purple, she was simply a merchant’s daughter who loved three things: her father, her ancestral home, and making dye. Then unbearable betrayal robs her of nearly everything.

With only her father’s secret formulas left, Lydia flees to Philippi and struggles to establish her business on her own. Determination and serendipitous acquaintances—along with her father’s precious dye—help her become one of the city’s preeminent merchants. But fear lingers in every shadow, until Lydia meets the apostle Paul and hears his message of hope, becoming his first European convert. Still, Lydia can’t outrun her secrets forever, and when past and present collide, she must either stand firm and trust in her fledgling faith or succumb to the fear that has ruled her life.

The Scribe by Francine Rivers

His wealth allowed him a position a power.
His obedience led him to give up his worldly possessions.
His humility helped him dedicate his life to recording the words of others.


After the death and resurrection of Jesus, Peter and Paul preached to the nations, carrying Christ’s message to all who would listen. But when they were silenced, it was their scribe Silas who brought their words to future generations. Be challenged by this faithful man whose story we must never forget.

The Scribe is the story of Silas and book five in the popular Sons of Encouragement series about five men who quietly changed eternity.

First Line Friday — The Prince And The Prodigal

4 Feb

Happy Friday! I am happy to spotlight the newest release by Jill Eileen Smith, The Prince And The Prodigal. This biblically-based novel features Joseph. I’m looking forward to discovering the history of Genesis through the lens of this talented author.

Now for the first line:

Prologue

Mamre, 1842 BC

Jacob paused at the outskirts of Mamre near Hebron, taking in the familiar hills and fields where he had spent the early years of his life.

Joseph is the pampered favorite son of the patriarch Jacob. His older brothers, deeply resentful of his status in the family, take advantage of the chance to get rid of him, selling him to slave traders and deceiving their father about his fate. It seems like their troubles are over. But for Joseph and older brother Judah, they are just beginning.

While Joseph is accused of rape and imprisoned, Judah attempts to flee the memory of his complicity in the betrayal of his younger brother. After decades apart, the brothers will come face-to-face in a stunning role reversal that sees Joseph in a position of great power while Judah begs for mercy. Will forgiveness or vengeance win the day?

Bestselling and award-winning author Jill Eileen Smith brings her considerable research and imaginative skills to bear in this vivid retelling of one of the most popular stories found in Scripture–a story of jealousy, betrayal, and a reconciliation that only God could bring about.

Top 10 Tuesday — Titles with Names

1 Feb

Happy Tuesday everyone! Who knew there were so many book titles that feature names? That’s the prompt for this week’s TTT. I didn’t have to go far in my reading log to find some great books. I have included a few older titles to go along with new-ish releases. There are lots of genres too — something for everyone.

For more bloggers’ lists, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Book Titles with Names

Becoming Mrs. Lewis by Patti Callahan

Belinda Blake And The Snake in The Grass by Heather Day Gilbert

Burying Daisy Doe by Ramona Richards

For The Love of Joy by Janet W. Ferguson

Judah’s Wife by Angela Hunt

Keturah by Lisa T. Bergren

Missing Isaac by Valerie Fraser Luesse

My Dearest Dietrich by Amanda Barratt

The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn by Lori Benton

Saving Mrs. Roosevelt by Candice Sue Patterson

Top 10 Tuesday — 2021 Releases I Didn’t Read (Who is surprised!)

18 Jan

Every year I vow to read more from my TBR shelves, to be purposeful in the books I acquire. And every year total failure! I really have no self-control when it comes to books. The following are 2021 books still on my NetGalley shelves. I don’t even want to list those that are on my Kindle or my physical shelves.

For more bloggers who are big fat failures too didn’t meet their reading goals last year 😉 , check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top 2021 Releases I Didn’t Read

The Chase by Lisa Harris

Dead Fall by Nancy Mehl

A Midnight Dance by Davidson Joanna Politano

The Nature of A Lady by Roseanna M. White

Paint And Nectar by Ashley Clark

The Paris Betrayal by James R. Hannibal

The Way It Should Be by Christina Suzann Nelson

Woman in The Shadows by Carrie Stuart Parks

A Woman of Words by Angela Hunt

Book Review: A Light on The Hill

10 Jan

I lead a Bible study/book club at my church. We discuss a scripture topic for 2-3 weeks and then we have a book club night in which we discuss a novel inspired by the particular Bible story/scripture/or character that we have studied. It’s a great way to combine a love of reading with the truths that form its foundation. This month we are looking at the Cities of Refuge as described in Numbers, Deuteronomy, and Joshua and discussing A Light on The Hill by Connilyn Cossette. Cossette’s book/series is what inspired me to explore this topic. Another reason to read Biblical fiction — an impetus to go deeper into God’s word. 🙂 All the details on the book and my thoughts are below.

Seven years ago, Moriyah was taken captive in Jericho and branded with the mark of the Canaanite gods. Now the Israelites are experiencing peace in their new land, but Moriyah has yet to find her own peace. Because of the shameful mark on her face, she hides behind her veil at all times and the disdain of the townspeople keeps her from socializing. And marriage prospects were out of the question . . . until now.

Her father has found someone to marry her, and she hopes to use her love of cooking to impress the man and his motherless sons. But when things go horribly wrong, Moriyah is forced to flee. Seeking safety at one of the newly-established Levitical cities of refuge, she is wildly unprepared for the dangers she will face, and the enemies–and unexpected allies–she will encounter on her way.

Connilyn Cossette is a Christy Award and Carol Award winning author whose books have been found on both ECPA and CBA bestseller lists. When she is not engulfed in the happy chaos of homeschooling two teenagers, devouring books whole, or avoiding housework, she can be found digging into the rich ancient world of the Bible to discover gems of grace that point to Jesus and weaving them into an immersive fiction experience. Although she and her husband have lived all over the country in their twenty-plus years of marriage, they currently call a little town south of Dallas, Texas their home.

My Impressions:

A Light on The Hill is the first book in the Cities of Refuge series. While some of the characters were part of Cossette’s Out from Egypt series, it is not necessary to have read those books. Inspired by scripture found in Numbers, Deuteronomy, and Joshua, the novel centers on Moriyah, a young unmarried Jewish woman who hides behind a veil and in the safety of her home after being branded by a Canaanite priest. Moriyah believes she has sheltered herself and her family from judgment and shame. This novel takes Moriyah on a journey of discovery as she seeks to flee danger. While some of her adventures seemed a bit far-fetched, they showed the culture, geography, and customs of Israel and Canaan following Israel’s conquest. I really liked the historical details that Cossette introduced, including the foods! Moriyah grows considerably during her trials and discovers that the only real refuge that can be trusted is within God’s care.

The Biblical message is strong, this is a Biblical novel after all. The law of Moses discussed in this book is interesting and pertaining to Moriyah’s circumstances, a bit foreign for a modern reader. But the Old Testament always points to Jesus, and this book’s depiction of the Cities of Refuge — their purpose and meaning — opened up a new understanding of Jesus as our spiritual refuge and his role as High Priest. There’s also romance and suspense that will appeal to the modern reader.

I very much enjoyed A Light on The Hill and look forward to discussing it with my book club. By the way, there are excellent discussion questions included.

Recommended.

Audience: adults.

(I purchased this book from Amazon. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)