A Baxter Family Christmas by Karen Kingsbury

A Baxter Family Christmas is a sweet clean read.  A beautiful book to snuggle up with in front of the fireplace, the Christmas lights twinkling in the background, while you sip on a warm mug of hot cocoa (or my favorite… Russian tea).  It is like reading a Hallmark movie.  FYI… I mean that in the very best sense.  I love Hallmark movies!

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Invitation: Cycle One of the Harbingers Series by Bill Myers, Frank Peretti, Angela Hunt, and Alton Gansky

I was so intrigued by the concept of four well-known, talented, and unique authors writing a series of short stories together.  In the introduction, the authors explain that the stories were written independently yet joined together with an overarching storyline in a manner similar to a tv series.  I have read novels by all four of the authors and their writing styles are quite distinct.  I had no idea that they were friends… fun.  With the combined creativity of these authors, it is no surprise to me that they came up with such an ingenious concept.   

So, while I found myself intrigued I was also dubious.  Could the series be cohesive with the distinct writing styles of four different authors?  Would it be confusing? 

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The Cottage by Michael Phillips

I highly recommend any book written by Michael Phillips.  The Cottage is no exception.  It is a beautiful romance and a compelling Christian fiction read.  As is common in Phillips’ written works, The Cottage is a lesson-filled book.  It is a comforting read, a relaxing read, while at the same time a spiritually and morally challenging read... if you are listening.  I pray that you listen.  I'm going to encourage you now to read The Inheritance, the first book in the Secrets of the Shetlands series, if you haven't already and to then read The Cottage

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the best of 2016

A list of my favorite books (from my 5-star rated list) read in 2016.  They may or may not have been published in 2016.  Sometimes I am blessed and run across a book years after it has been published and find a new favorite.

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Archie of Outlandish by Lynnette Kraft

The community and residents of Outlandish are outlandish and that is their beauty.  Archie of Outlandish is a story of viewpoint; yours and mine, good and bad, changing and growing.  Lynnette Kraft has an enviable way of looking at the world and she shares it with us through Archibald Pumbly.  Archie provides a fascinatingly intelligent yet childlike view of the people and world around him.  Archie observes.  He does not do do do go go go.  He is at peace and quietly watches.  His view is incredible!  It equates to viewing the world through the lens of Christ's love.

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The Inheritance by Michael Phillips

Phillips paints beautiful scenery.  His descriptions of the Shetland Islands and the community of Whales Reef in particular are very detailed and lovely.  He shows the value and an understanding of the culture and history of the island. The Inheritance extolls the blessings to be found in a families heritage that I find distinctly lacking in America.  I am much the poorer for it. 

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