Book Review - Allison's Journey


Romance Rating:

Violence Rating:

Fear/Horror Rating:

Overall Impression:

(If you have any questions about the way we rate a book, check out our Rating Page for details!)

I've read this book twice in the last year and just recently purchased it - and I don't purchase books very all. So that's saying something! I immensely enjoyed the tale of Allison; a young woman who fears she will never marry because of her tomboy-ish-ness.

Allison Troyer is old enough for marriage, but since her mother died when she was young and her aunt who came to stay with them refuses to let her help in the kitchen, Allison has no skills at a homemaker and fears no man will ever fall in love with her because of her tomboy-ish-ness. When Allison is sent to her mother's sister's house hundreds of miles away in Missouri to learn how to be a proper homemaker, she meets young and rash James Esh, and quiet yet caring Aaron Zook. James Esh likes Allison immediately, but can he win her affections even with his wild and brash personality? Aaron notices James' interest, and fears for Allison's heart and safety, though he's known her for only a few days. Although he's promised himself never to fall in love, can Aaron control his feelings before he finds himself hopelessly in love with this young beauty? Both are after Allison's heart...but only one will succeed.

I love the story of Allison and her life. It was unique and a very pleasurable read. I really enjoyed this book because though it was a romance, it was not an extreme romance. At all. I've noticed many Amish books are like that, which I think is why I like them so much. The Amish culture is very neat to read and learn about. They way they live is quite charming and almost makes me jealous. I've thought on more than one occasion that it would be neat to be Amish.

This book easily got 5 stars in the romance rating as the only romantic actions were a kiss, from a flirtatious young lad whose actions are frowned upon greatly, and an "almost kiss" which ended up not happening because they tipped over their boat and fell out. The rest was done in a Godly and honorable courtship, which I personally liked.

Allison's Journey was a very good story and I would encourage you to read it! You can get it for less than $10 HERE! You will not regret picking up this heart warming book!

Book Discussion - Until We Reach Home, Part 2

Let's jump right into the questions for today! As I did on Monday, I'll have three questions - each one focused on one of the sisters. This book holds SO many good discussion questions, that just 6 of them doesn't do it justice - so go borrow the book from your library or purchase it for as low as $6 HERE!

1) Elin had watched out and cared for her sisters for so long that, once they reached America and Kirsten and Sofia started becoming independent, it took a while for Elin to come to the understanding that her sisters were grown up and able to make decisions for themselves. Have you ever had to stop being so protective of a younger sibling once they've become independent? Was it hard?

I have several younger sisters under me that I care for and watch out for, but none are yet old enough to be totally independent on themselves. Although one of my sisters, who's 10, is already reaching out for her independence a little bit! ;-)

2) Kirsten pondered physically harming herself several times in the days after her discovery - she couldn't even bear to tell her sisters her secret. Have you ever been so emotionally down that you just wished you could escape it all?

I know that I have sometimes felt so weighted down with my problems that I've longed to jump ahead a few days, week, or months - just to escape the pain of the moment. Though each time I think of this, I also realize that the Lord has sent me the trials that I'm going through for a reason, and that He never gives me a trial that is stronger than I can bear..

3) The man who captured Sofia's heart left her for many months, without her knowing if he'd ever live up to his promise and come back for her - but Sofia waited patiently and had faith that he would. Would you be as trusting in a man who can't even speak to you because he doesn't know your language? Yet even if they couldn't speak to each other, he gave her the best comfort she could ask for when she needed it most by pointing her to God's word.

Sofia and Ludwig story is so sweet in that even though they couldn't speak to eachother (She spoke Swedish and he spoke German) they still found ways to communicate - to overcome the language barrier that seperated them. I don't know how I would react if I was in Sofia's shoes, but if someone came to me as Ludwig came to Sofia during her dark hours, I would think he'd be a very special man indead - and with such true character and selflessness that he'd be worth waiting for, no matter how long it took.

Ponderin' The Past...In The Industrial Revolution!

As I was reading the book "A Fragile Design" by Tracie Peterson and Judith Miller, I became very curious about the Industrial Revolution, as it was a time frame I knew very little about.
From what I have been able to learn, the Industrial Revolution in America took place from 1876 – 1900. What's known as the first Industrial Revolution took place in 1750 through 1830 in Great Britain.

An Industrial Revolution takes place when a large amount of farmers and people who work and live in the country leave to work in factories and live in the city. This can be both good and bad. More goods are able to be made with people working at the mills and factories, but it also brought crowded citys, pollution, and child labor issues.
Many thought they were coming to a wonderful new job and life, but a lot of people's hopes were dashed when they arrived and saw that it was not as grand as it was made out. You were expected to work long doing very hard work with little pay. Many children never received any education because their family needed the income from their work to live.

It was really neat to read about Arabella Newberry and her life in this timeline. She herself worked at a mill in the book and it was very interesting to read all about life in that time. Not only do you get to learn a lot about the Industrial Revolution, but Arabella, before she moved to the city, was a Shaker and it was interesting to learn a bit about their culture in the book also. If you like history, romance, and drama all rolled into one gripping book, I'd encourage you to get "A Fragile Design (Bells of Lowell Series #2)!
Category: 5 comments

Book Discussion - Until We Reach Home, Part 1

Here we are, into the third week of our discussion posts! I hope you are enjoying reading them as much as we are reading the books and raising the questions! :-)

For this week we will take a look at Until We Reach Home by Lynn Austin. If you haven't read this book yet, I highly encourage you to - click the link HERE to purchase it for less than $10! It was a wonderful read about three close-knit sisters!


Romance Rating:

Violence Rating:

Fear/Horror Rating:

Overall Impression:

(If you have any questions about the way we rate a book, check out our Rating Page for details!

It didn't take many pages for me to be drawn into the plight of Elin and her sisters - Kirsten and Sofia. After losing their parents, their Uncle took over their farm and made life unbearable for Elin as she tried to protect her sisters from him. Finally, when she decides to escape to America to live with her mother's favorite brother who had left for America years ago, their hard journey to America and freedom began.

I loved reading about the three sisters during their journey to America and how, even though they had their differences and dark secrets, they stuck together through it all. They grew so much after reaching America - even shy, dependent Sofia - the baby of the family - changed on the trip to America and established a career for herself so that she could help provide for her sisters.

There were 2 parts that I would urge caution for some younger readers. The reason Elin made her sisters leave with her to America was because of what her Uncle did to her and what he was about to do to her sister, Sofia. When she discovered her Uncle's eyes were beginning to turn from her to her younger sister, she imminently knew she had to leave America. Nothing is explicit or even plainly said, but what Elin had to endure at the hand of her Uncle is alluded to several times.

Another point of caution is that one of the sisters mistakenly ends up pregnant. Nothing is explained, except for when the sister begins to get sick and the doctor announces she is pregnant. At that time in history - 1897 - it was a scandal to have a child out of wedlock, and the sister has to live with her foolish actions. So, in some ways, it was a good lesson to show that actions have consequences. But, as I said, Austin handles everything so well that nothing is inappropriate.

Besides these two points, the book was great - filled with lessons, special moments, and growing periods for all three sisters. Towards the end of the book, it got kind of sad as the sisters began to branch out and build their own lives: they had been through so much together! But all in all, I thoroughly enjoyed the book and will certainly pick up the book again to read! I highly recommend it - Lynn Austin did a wonderful job touching lives with this story!!

BOOK DISCUSSION: So, here are the questions, and I've answered them with my own thoughts below each question. Go ahead and leave a comment with your own thoughts - I'd love to hear from you!!

1) Elin refused to share her shame with her other sisters, even when her vehemence in leaving Sweden was puzzling to Kirsten and Sofia. If you held a shameful secret, would you be the type to tell your sister/confidant or keep it to yourself?

I am only sixteen months younger than my older sister, Jessica, so she and I are incredibly close! If I had a shameful secret like Elin, I don't think I could go many days without seeking the comfort of my sisters embrace and kind words. Maybe that's because I am the younger sister - unlike Elin, who was the oldest of the three and therefore had far more responsibility in caring for her other sisters.

2) Kirsten, however tom-boyish, headstrong, and fearless she appears to be on the outside, is really a scared girl yearning for love and comfort after the death of her parents. When they begin their journey to America and Kirsten meets a young man who is also an immigrant heading to America, Kirsten is at odds with her sister and doesn't understand Elin's severe distrust of men. Which character type do you have? Kirsten: enjoys all kinds of company, both male and female, and has confidence in taking care of herself, or Elin: Shoulders all the responsibility alone and avoids accepting help or friendship from strangers?

While I don't think I am as careless as Kirsten can sometimes be, I do enjoy company of both guys and gals. Sometimes Kirsten went a bit far, and I understood Elin's carefulness - Elin reminded me SO much of my older sister!!

3) Sofia is ever the timid one and throughout the entire trip to America has her heart set on going back to Sweden - she doesn't like change and she doesn't like strange circumstances. So when she is suddenly stripped of both her securities in life - Elin and Kirsten - and left amid a bunch of strangers who don't speak Swedish, she is beside herself. What would you do if everything familiar was taken away from you - including your family who always took care of the world for you?

If I had Sofia's timid character, I think I would've been as lost as Sofia felt - or worse. I don't consider myself shy or timid, as Sofia is, but the thought of being left alone in a building full of people who didn't speak your language would be pretty terrifying! It's amazing how someone can draw on the inner strength of God to help them during the hard times - He is always there for you, no matter what...just like Sofia discovered.

Well, that's all for today! Make sure to return Wednesday for another set of questions as we talk about Elin, Kirsten, and Sofia's hardships once they land in America!


Here is just a quick post giving thanks to Amber at Seasons of Humility for giving us this award!

Make sure to go visit her blog! Thanks again, Amber!

Category: 1 comments

Book Review: The Vigilante's Bride


Romance Rating: 3 Stars
Violence Rating: 4 Stars
Fear/Horror Rating: 5 Stars
Overall Impression Rating: 3 Stars
(please check our Rating Page if you have any questions about the way we rate; our rating system may differ from other review sites.) 

I had heard a lot about this book, so was looking forward to an exciting, gripping read about a girl who at first was forcibly taken from her intended, but in the end, willingly accepted her kidnappers’ help to stay away from her intended. Though the story loosely followed this expectation, I feel it fell far short from what it could have been.

Once Emily was rescued from Bart, from what I read on the back of the book, I expected Bart to go to great lengths to get Emily back. I was surprised that, after the first attempt, he apparently forgot about her! Not what I was expecting – I thought the book would be about Bart trying to get her back and Luke protecting her.
The Sheriff was another character I couldn’t quite understand. At first, from the way he treated Luke, I thought he was one of Bart’s henchmen. But since he didn’t side with Bart either, I didn’t understand why he had such a big problem with Luke – I would’ve thought he’d want to help Luke put Bart in his place. So I was a little confused/disappointed in this character.
Emily and Luke, however, were well developed characters and by the end, I felt like I knew them pretty well. There were a few moments where the author hinted at some inappropriate things, but as it was only natural in the setting the characters were placed, it was understandable, though didn’t need to be said. The first time they kiss in the book was, also, a bit disappointing – but since I don’t want to give away anything, I won’t say what it was that was such a disappointment. :-)
So, all in all, while I enjoyed the read, I was disappointed in the plot that didn’t live up to the expectations I got from reading the back of the book. But if you like a story about a stubborn woman and an equally stubborn man who form a partiality towards each other, then you should enjoy this read!

Giveaway Winner

The winner of The Centurion's Wife by Janette Oke and Davis Bunn is...

* * * Mozi Esme (janemaritz@...) * * *

Congrats, Mozi Esme! We hope you enjoy it as much as we did!

Thanks to everyone who participated in the giveaway! Stay tuned for more discussions, reviews, interviews, and more! Make sure to return for our next giveaway which begins on October 8th!

If you are interested in purchasing this book, help support our blog by using this link!

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Book Discussion - The Covenant, part 2

Here we are, on the second part of our book discussion!

1) Sadie continually sins throughout the book and knows to some extent that it is effecting her sister's life, yet Sadie continues because of the thrill of it all. Would you, or have you, made the same choice Sadie did, or would you be able to stop so your sister can live the life she yearns for?

Though, of course, I could not be sure, I would hope that I would be able to stop myself before injuring someone or playing a part in messing up their lives. I'm sure it would be very hard though, as sin currupts the mind and makes it hard to thing clearly.
2) Abram only wants to do what is best for his daughter, which is why he continually tries to persuade her to marry their next door neighbor. Gid, as he is to inherit a large amount of land when he marryies. Abram know Gid is a good man and will treat his daughter well, but is it worth ripping her away from the one she truly loves? If you were in Abram's shoes, and you thought you knew of a choice one could make that you are sure would be better than the one they were presently chosing, would you, do the same thing Abram did and attempt to remove the other choice?

I honestly would probably try to help them choose the one that I thought best, sadly. Growing up with 6 younger siblings has automatically placed me in a situation where I very often have to take control of matters. I have a feeling that I would try to do the same with a relative, though I know I'd say "follow your heart" if I knew they were in love with someone else. :-)

Ponderin' the Petra!

While reading the book Petra: City of Stone, I thought it was so amazing that buildings could really have been sculpted out of the rock! I mean, just take a look at this picture!

Pretty cool, huh? :-)

I did a bit of history on the city of Petra, and it looked like the settlement was begun around the city of Petra around 1550-1292 BC. It became a main stop on the trading route, as you discover when reading the book: Cassia joins a caravan to journey to Petra with her son, Alexander.  In order to get to the city, you have to travel down into a canyon before rounding a bend and passing through into the city.

As Cassia discovered soon after reaching Petra, many people lived homes carved out of the rock. After traveling up many rock-carved stairs, these homes often went deep into the rock or, as Cassia's bedroom did - had a window open up to overlook the city of Petra below.

This town seems like such an amazing place to visit! What makes the book Petra: City of Stone SO good is that the author, T.L. Higley actually went to visit Petra! So she saw first hand everything she has included in the book! I highly recommend you get your hands on this book! At only $10 on, this book has an adventure and history lesson - all rolled into one!! :-D

~ Katy
Category: 2 comments

Book Discussion - The Covenant, Part 1

Welcome to our second weekly book discussion! Today we will be discussing "The Covenant" by Beverly Lewis. Remember: if you comment on one of our discussions, you will receive an extra entry for our current giveaway: The Centurion's Wife!
We'd love to hear your thoughts and opinions, so make sure to comment!


Romance Rating:

Violence Rating:

Fear/Horror Rating:

Overall Impression:

(please check our Rating Page if you have any questions about the way we rate; our rating system may differ from other review sites.)

When I started reading The Covenant, I was immediately drawn into the Amish county of Gobbler's Knobb, and the people that lived within. The story of 16 year old Leah and her family was very interesting and even more thought provoking. Leah enters her courting age and quickly falls in love with her childhood sweet heart while Sadie enters the normal world, enjoying her rumpringe perhaps a little too much. Disaster befalls both the sister's when Leah's father secretly sends her lover away in hopes that the man he wants her to marry will have his chance, and Sadie roots herself deeper and deeper into sin until she commits the worst of sins and loses her virginity. It was heartbreaking to watch both the sister's going through such hard circumstances, though Leah was much easier to pity. She had to bear her sister's sin and keep it a secret, lest her sister exposes who she loves and ruin her dreams in life, or even worst; be shunned for her immoral act. Sadie doesn't help Leah's situation at all and is being defiant and difficult. As the story continues, you learn just how much love a sister can have, and how much that love can cost.
The Covenant was a pleasure to read and I enjoyed every moment of it. I was continually wishing that I had the quick forgiveness that Leah did. She loved her sister so much, and though she was scared and hurt that she was losing her best friend she still showed kindness and attempted to put her sister back on the right path. Leah had such genuine love for her family; it set a great example for how we should love ours. I encourage you to enter Leah's story and learn for yourself the power of family, and the miracle of hope.

BOOK DISCUSSION:So, here are the questions, and I'll answer them below with my own thoughts. If you're wondering about the rules to these book discussion, there are just two, if you would be so kind as to follow them!

Rule 1 - always keep your comments and discussions in a positive light. This is meant for everyone to have fun and share what they think! Post what you think. It's totally okay if you differ from us or other reviews!! That's what I love about book discussions - the freedom to tell what your thoughts are about a book or time in history!
Rule 2 - Have fun with it! This blog is made for YOU, our readers, to interact with us!! We LOVE hearing from you!


1) In the story, Leah had feelings for Jonas, someone other than the man that her father would like her to marry. The struggle between choosing the one she loves and loves her and honoring her father and his wishes is fierce. Both of the men are godly; one just happens to be the one she loves and the other the one her father wishes she loved.
How do you think you would respond to having to choose between doing what your father wants and following your heart?

Knowing me, I would attempt to have a serious conversation with my father, explaining how I loved someone other than the man he wished me to. I have a feeling that, from what I could tell of Abram's character throughout the books, if Leah had made such a proclamation more than once her father would have relented, or at least thought about how he would act more. But, because of the secrecy of the courtship in the Amish community, it may be harder than it seems because you can't say who it is you love.
As long as my father did not have a set rule that I was to marry someone, I would most assuredly follow my heart.

2) Throughout the book, Leah is able to do nothing but to simply watch as her sister sins without repentance repeatedly. She is forced to keep silent under the threat of exposing her loved one, but when Sadie informs her that she is expecting a child in result of an immoral sin, Leah can barely keep silent. It comes to the point where Leah is falling apart because of the many dreadful secrets she hides within her, and none of them are hers to bare.
If you were Leah, who has grown up in a tight-knit community her whole life, where there is a definite line that one dared not cross lest you be shunned from your church and family, what do you think your first reaction would be upon hearing and witnessing your sister step far over that line? How would you handle the news that your elder sister who has been your closest friend and companion your whole life was pregnant before marriage, and not only that, but refusing to repent of her sins? And how would you show her love after realizing that this shame will infect her whole family if exposed and possibly ruin your chance at happiness with the man you love?

Oh my, well this is a hard one since I have no sister. But, I will take one of my closest friends(practically sisters) and try to imagine it as them.
Honestly, my heart would be so broken that I doubt I could keep the secret from exposing itself on my face. It would be such a burden to carry around, and trying to keep her sister's trust and her beau while doing what's right in God's eyes would be terribly trying. If I felt even the tiniest tinge of guilt for keeping the secret a secret, it would be nearly impossible, as I do not do well with the feeling of guilt. As for showing her love, I was befuddled at the way Leah still cared so deeply for her sister and rarely lost her temper with her. regardless of her sinful ways.

3) Ida Ebersol, the girls' mother, notices that something is terribly wrong with her eldest daughter when she becomes snappy and unapproachable, but fears that if she asks her daughter will only shove her away...or perhaps even worse, tell her the truth.
If you had to sit and watch your daughter or other close relative seem so miserable and out of character, would you immediately approach them, or wait for them to come to you? Regardless of what one might do, what do you suppose is the right thing to do?

Never having been in a situation like this, it is hard to answer this question. I assume I would attempt to confront the girl and then get upset when she refused to answer my questions. What is the right thing to do? I'd say to ask her, and then if she didn't answer you treat her with kindness and love, and let her come to you when she's ready. Pressuring very rarely gets you closer to the answer, and all to often pushes your further from the person.

Make sure to return Wednesday for the second set of questions!

Book Discussion - The Heavens Before, Part 2

Here we are, on the second part of our book discussion! Here are just two more questions to ponder in regards to experiencing the Flood - like Annah did in the book, The Heavens Before.

1) What would be the first thought to race through your mind when you hear Noakh announce that the time had come to prepare for the Flood?

I think a bit of fear would have found it's way into my thoughts at that moment. But, soon after, as I have always liked some adventure, I doubtless would have been swept up in the preparations for such an amazing event.

2) When God began closing the door of the ark with His own hand, Annah's first thought was "I'm not imagining this..." If you had been in Annah's place, what do you think you would be thinking as the door was shut and the world outside began to be destroyed?

I would certainly feel apprehension as the door was being shut. But the realization that God was the one shutting and sealing the enormous door would have filled me with wonder. It would certainly have been a moment I would never have forgotten!

Thanks for stopping by again! Remember to stop by Friday for some more discussion! And as I mentioned before, if you leave a comment with your thoughts, you get another chance at winning Book Pondering's book giveaway, The Centurion's Wife!!

~ Katy

Book Discussion - The Heavens Before, Part 1

I am so excited! This is the very first book discussion to be held on Book Ponderings, and I hope everyone will enjoy it as much as I have had hosting it! The book I'm going to be talking about today is called The Heavens Before, by Kacy Barnett-Gramckow. Don't worry, if you haven't read it, it doesn't mean you can't join in the discussion! Keep reading! :-)

As a little special bonus, whenever you join in on a book discussion, you will get an extra entry into winning our giveaway, The Centurion's Wife! You don't have to worry about mentioning it, we'll automatically add your name into the giveaway for each comment/question you leave on this book discussion! So don't hesitate to join in!

Oh, and before I go on, if you are interested in the book, head over to my blog, The Legacy of a Writer, and check out my current giveaway - it's for a copy of The Heavens Before!! :-D

To begin this book discussion, I'm going to post my review of the book, just so you all know my thoughts on it!


Romance: 5 Stars
Voilence: 4 Stars
Fear/Horror: 4 Stars
Overall Impression: 5 Stars

When I first began this book, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I’ve never read a story about what it was like before the Flood. But Kacy is an amazing author who weaved a touching story effortlessly into history. The story of Annah instantly intrigued me, in that she has not spoken a word to anyone in years. Her silent suffering, that no one in her family cared to ease, was heartbreaking.

The bible doesn’t tell us much of what it was like before the Flood, but Kacy gives us a good idea of how evil it was through the lives of Annah’s twisted family – if you could really call them a family. Annah’s child-like faith in the Most High – whom everyone else thought was a foolish legend – was what helped sustain Annah in the years after her father’s murder. The entrance of Shem was like a bright light into Annah’s dark world, just as she was considering ending it. I loved reading their story as their two lives continued to weave itself together.

I knocked 1 star off of both the Fear/Horror rating and the Violence rating. It wasn't anything bad, but Annah was abused by her brother and once her sister-in-law tried to take her life. Mild things like this are in the book, but I didn't find them offensive or too much detail - it was all handled very well.

All in all, this is definitely a book that I won’t forget anytime soon! Kacy is a wonderful author and sticks to the biblical facts from Genesis, while adding in the special story of Annah. I highly recommend The Heavens Before.


So, here are the questions, and I'll answer them below with my own thoughts. If you're wondering about the rules to these book discussion, there are just two, if you would be so kind as to follow them!

Rule 1 - always keep your comments and discussions in a positive light. This is meant for everyone to have fun and share what they think! Post what you think. It's totally okay if you differ from us or other reviews!! That's what I love about book discussions - the freedom to tell what your thoughts are about a book or time in history!

Rule 2 -  Have fun with it! This blog is made for YOU, our readers, to interact with us!! We LOVE hearing from you!


1) If the whole village thought you were mentally mad, what would you think if one person saw past your actions and into your heart?

After living a life of people looking down on me and thinking me beneath them, it would be like a bright candle in the middle of a dark cave. I've always enjoyed my family's love, so I sympathize with Annah, who had no loving family to turn to when she needed comfort. For someone to take the time to see into my heart...I think that person would be someone special to treasure for an eternity!

2) What would be your thoughts if, the day after you move into live with a family, they told you the world would be destroyed by God, and your only salvation you had was an enormous structure that they referred to as "The Pen"?

At first, I believe it would take me a while to accept this as the truth - more than likely, I might jump to a conclusion that the family had serious mental issues. lol But, if the Lord had lead me to this family, as He did for Annah, I think my journey to believe in the Flood would take a similar road to hers, in that I would eventually believe that the impending doom on an evil world (Which Annah saw first had) was close at hand, and the pen was the only way to escape it.

3) If you knew that someone wanted you dead, would you have the courage to trust in the Lord to protect you and give you the power to overcome the threat, such as Annah did?

Hmm...this is a little hard for me to say. When you're not in the certain situation, it can be very easy to assume that you'd be brave and fearless with the Lord on your side. But, even though I'd trust implicitly God, I have a feeling I would still be a bit scared at the thought of standing up to an abusive brother who wants to kill me. :-/

Oh, and don't forget to check back again on Wednesday, where we'll continue our discussion of The Heavens Before!! :-D See you then!!

~ Katy

Monthly Giveaway: The Centurion's Wife by Janette Oke and Davis Bunn

To start off this blog, we'd like to host the first of our monthly giveaways! This month we are giving away the book "The Centurion's Wife" by Janette Oke and Davis Bunn!

A sweeping saga of the dramatic events
surrounding the birth of Christianity...

And the very personal story of Leah,
compelled into a betrothal she never wanted,
drawn by a faith she never expected...

When her family's wealth and power are lost forever, Leah is sent to Pontius Pilate in hopes that he might arrange a strategic marriage. But despite her betrothed's striking countenance and position, Leah deems life as a centurion's wife a fate worse than death.

Head of a garrison near Galilee, Alban has ambitions that could one day see him at the seat of power - in Rome itself. Eager to prove himself, he takes on the assignment of a lifetime, one that will put his career, his beliefs, and his very life at risk.

But when the death - and missing body - of an obscure rabbi compel Leah and Alban to search for answers, what they discover changes everything.


Romance Rating: 5 stars
Violence Rating: 5 stars
Fear/Horror Rating: 5 stars
Overall Impression: 4 stars

If you were ever curious as to what it must have been like during the days immediately following Christ’s death and resurrection – what kind of confusion, doubt, and uncertainty must have been felt by the many people who witnessed the death and then saw the empty tomb – this is just the book you’ve been looking for!

I was swept up in Leah’s story from page one, and thoroughly enjoyed traveling with Leah and Alban, her betrothed, as they each tried to discover what had happened to the Teacher’s body after His crucifixion and burial. The book was well-researched and extremely well-written; I felt like I personally knew the characters by the close of the book. I was with Leah as she struggled in her confusion at her betrothal and her new found faith, and I felt Alban’s emotional pain from his younger years and his spiritual freedom when he realized that Jesus was the Messiah.

The romance in this book was very minimal, which was a nice change of pace. The romance that was in it was practical – Leah had to learn to respect Alban as her future husband, even if she didn’t want to marry him. And in doing so, she truly fell in love with him. A very sweet love story, if you ask me.

So, while at times the details given in the book were a bit lengthy, this book was very entertaining and informative. When I read the last sentence and closed the book, I felt content to leave Leah and Alban as they explored their new life together as believers. This is definitely the kind of book with a story and spiritual lessons that will stay with you long after you have finished reading the last page.

Giveaway Rules:You must leave a comment including your e-mail address so that we can contact you if you're the winner. USA only, please. This giveaway begins today and ends in two weeks on the 22nd of September. The winner will be randomly chosen and announced on the 23rd. This winner will be notified by their e-mail address as well as on this blog. If the winner doesn't respond within 5 days, we will have to pick another. Enjoy and good luck!

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The book being given away has been read for reviewing purposes but is still in perfect, like-new condition. There are no bends on the cover or pages, or marks in/on the book.
Photo credit: Lori Warman