Sunday, April 23, 2017


You’re invited to receive God’s truth for balance, hope, and transformation in the fully revised and redesigned The NKJV Woman’s Study Bible. The new edition features a beautiful, full-color redesign and poignantly reveals the Word of God with Scripture insights and the contributions of more than eighty women from a wide variety of ethnic, denominational, educational, and occupational backgrounds. Special features designed to speak to a woman’s heart appear throughout the Bible text, revealing Scripture-based insights about how godly womanhood grows from a woman’s identity as a Christ-follower and a child of the Kingdom.
This spring, cultivate your heart’s spiritual roots and enter to win the Grow in the Word Giveaway!
One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on April 27. The winner will be announced April 28 on the Litfuse blog.


The NKJV Woman’s Study Bible (Thomas Nelson, March 2017)
The Woman’s Study Bible poignantly reveals the Word of God to women, inviting them to receive God’s truth for balance, hope, and transformation.
Special features designed to speak to a woman’s heart appear throughout the Bible text, revealing Scripture-based insights about how godly womanhood grows from a woman’s identity as a Christ-follower and a child of the Kingdom.
Now with a beautiful full-color redesign, The Woman’s Study Bible reflects the contributions of over 80 women from a wide variety of ethnic, denominational, educational, and occupational backgrounds. Since the publication of the first edition of The Woman’s Study Bible under the editorial guidance of Dorothy Kelley Patterson and Rhonda Harrington Kelley, this landmark study Bible has sold over 1.5 million copies.
Features Include:
—Beautiful full-color design throughout
—Detailed biographical portraits of over 100 biblical women
—Thousands of extensive verse-by-verse study notes
—Over 300 in-text topical articles on relevant issues
—Insightful essays by women who are recognized experts in the fields of theology, biblical studies, archaeology, and philosophy
—Book introductions and outlines
—Hundreds of full-color in-text maps, charts, timelines, and family trees
—Quotes from godly women throughout history
—Set of full-page maps of the biblical world
—Topical index
Thomas Nelson


In business since 1798, Thomas Nelson is one of the oldest Bible publishers in the world and the largest publisher of the King James Version. Their mission is to inspire the world by using our talents, assets, opportunities, and influence to engage and equip people with Scripture and draw people to a deeper study and understanding of God’s Word.
Find out more about Thomas at

My thoughts on this Bible:
First of all I want to say that I received a complimentary copy of this Bible. Now on to my thoughts. 
I don't often comment on the box that a Bible comes in but the first thing I noticed was the beautiful box, it's so feminine looking and reminds me so much of spring and new beginnings. I love pretty Bibles and this one certainly is, it  has one of the most luxurious covers that I have ever seen. I am reviewing the brown/burgundy leathersoft and it feels butter soft in my hands. The top half of the cover is embossed with a floral design and the gold lettering is a beautiful bonus. The presentation page is very pretty and always an added bonus. I love that there is a place to record my marriage and family history and marriage. Something new to me is a page where the user can record up to six spiritual mothers, with a place to note name, Godly characteristic, spiritual gift and special verse. This is a wonderful feature and one that I would have never thought of, but I immediately had several names that I wanted to record. I really enjoy the NKJV text and the size of the text is perfect for me. While I enjoy the study notes it is the little inspirational quotes that are peppered throughout the Bible that really spoke to me. I found myself seeking them out.
I used the book of Ruth to get a feel for some of the features of the Bible and let me tell you I really enjoyed the character studies that were included along with Ruth's family tree. I have been using this Bible daily and it truly is beautiful to look at but more that that it really provides so many useful study tools that have become invaluable to me in my study. Truly a wonderful gift for Mother's Day but really a gift that would be welcome any time of the year. 

Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Gift Of Jesus

The Gift of Jesus by [Hunt, Johnny]
  • Print Length: 336 pages
    • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
    • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; Lea edition (November 8, 2016)
    • Publication Date: November 8, 2016
    • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishing
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B01CXE9O66

    The Gift of Jesus is a thoroughly trustworthy and inspiring devotional focused on the amazing gift of Jesus and what that means in our daily lives. It was created and written by General Editor Johnny Hunt, former president of the Southern Baptist Convention along with 51 Southern Baptist pastors and ministry leaders, including Dr. James Merritt, Dr. Ronnie Floyd, Dr. Steve Dighton, Dr. Don Wilton, Dr. Ted Traylor, and Dr. Michael Cloer.

    Each daily entry includes Scripture passages, a devotion, and a prayer. Explore such interesting themes as Jesus our Savior; Jesus, our companion for life; abiding in Christ; Jesus, our Rest; the basis of hope; God is with you; and how the Bible changes lives.
    My take on this devotional:
    I always like to use a devotional for a few weeks at least before I write a review in order to really get a feel for the writing and the type of devotions. With this one I found the presentation to be different and I liked it! First of all the devotional is written by several different people and each week focuses on a different topic. I really like sampling the variety of writers and the topical way the weeks are broken down. The pages are pretty standard, you get an opening scripture, the devotion and then a prayer. A ribbon marker is a nice addition. I like that there is a presentation page, making it a perfect gift. The cover makes it a stand out devotional on my shelf because it is such a pretty colored gray and feels buttery soft. I wouldn't hesitate to give this one as a gift. 
    A complimentary copy of this devotional was provided in exchange for an honest review. 

    NIV Faithlife Study Bible

    Stay curious. There’s more to explore!
    No matter where you are on your faith journey, there’s always more to explore in God’s Word. Dive in and feed your curiosity with the NIV Faithlife Study Bible.
    Filled with innovative graphics and rich commentary, this visually stunning study Bible delivers helpful insights designed to inform your faith. Robust study notes are built on the original languages and adapted from the popular Faithlife Study Bible app, which has reached over one million readers.
    The balance of striking graphics, comprehensive study features, and intriguing insights from multiple points of view will keep you curious as you explore the treasures of God’s Word.
    Features include:
    • The full text of the most read, most trusted modern-English Bible – the New International Version (NIV)
    • In depth book introductions that include an outline and information on authorship, background, structure, themes, and a map, a timeline, or both
    • Verse-by-verse study notes with the unique focus of revealing nuances from the original biblical languages for modern readers
    • Informative contributions by respected scholars and best-selling authors including Charles Stanley, Randy Alcorn, and Ed Stetzer, among others
    • Over 100 innovative full color infographics, comprehensive timelines and informative tables to enrich Bible study
    • Three detailed life-of-Jesus event timelines chronicling his infancy and early ministry, the journey to Jerusalem, and the passion and resurrection
    • 27 family trees and people diagrams illustrate the interconnectedness of key characters in Scripture
    • Helpful overview articles give a bird’s-eye view of the books of the Bible, noting the type of literature and key themes of each book.
    • 14 original color maps at the back of the Bible provide historical and geographical context for key events of the Old and New Testaments

    My thoughts on this Bible:
    I always enjoy finding a new study Bible and the NIV Faithlife study Bible has become one of my favorites. I think if I had to name one thing that makes this Bible my favorite, it would be the list of contributing authors that provide articles and notes. From Charles Stanley to Michael Heiser there are some pretty popular names. On to the other features of the Bible. The size is a bit chunky but that's because of all of the useful information within the pages. The study notes alone are tremendous and often take up more than half of each page. Plenty of maps, charts and useful articles provide great information, as well as fuel for thought. There isn't a presentation page which is something I like to see because I often like to gift Bibles. Otherwise I can't really find anything wrong with this one. A Bible that would be wonderful for beginners, but it's also great for anyone who is looking to grow in their faith. 

    A complimentary copy of this book was provided .

    Wednesday, March 1, 2017

    NKJV Journal the Word Bible ~ Large Print

    • Hardcover: 2016 pages
    • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; Lrg edition (November 15, 2016)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 0718090918
    • ISBN-13: 978-0718090913

    The NKJV Journal the Word™ Bible, Large Print allows you to creatively express yourself every day with plenty of room for notes or verse art journaling next to your treasured verses. With unique and sophisticated covers, this single-column large print edition features thick cream-colored paper with lightly ruled lines in the extra-wide margins, perfect to reflect on God’s Word and enhance your study.
    Excellent for a gift or for personal use, it can also be a cherished heirloom to pass on to future generations with your personal writings inside!
    Features of this treasured Bible include:
    • Lined, wide margins for notes, reflections and art
    • Thicker cream paper for enduring note-taking
    • Large print 10-pt font eliminates eye strain when reading
    • Words of Christ in red
    • Lays flat in your hand or on your desk
    • Ribbon marker

    My take on this Bible:
    I am a note taker so this Bible was really perfect for me because of the wide, lined margins which provide plenty of room for notes, doodling or even artwork. I personally enjoy stickers and have plenty of room for those in the margins along with my notes. The pages are thick enough that I don't worry about bleedthrough or ripping them when I write or doodle on them.  First of all this Bible is very eye appealing, the color is very pretty. I do wonder how it will hold up with extended use though because of the cloth cover, which really doesn't feel very substantial. The large print is very easy on the eye, and sometimes large print can make the size of the Bible bigger but this one is still a very good size for carrying to church. The lay flat binding, is something that I look for whenever I purchase a Bible.  I also like that the words of Christ are in red. Overall if you are looking for a reasonably priced wide margined Bible to give as a gift or use for yourself this one is worth taking a look at. 

    A complimentary copy of this Bible was provided for me to review.

    Wednesday, February 15, 2017

    The Dog Who Was There~ Ron Marasco

    The Dog Who Was There
    About the book:

    No one expected Barley to have an encounter with the Messiah.
    He was homeless, hungry, and struggling to survive in first century Jerusalem. Most surprisingly, he was a dog. But through Barley’s eyes, the story of a teacher from Galilee comes alive in a way we’ve never experienced before.
    Barley’s story begins in the home of a compassionate woodcarver and his wife who find Barley as an abandoned, nearly-drowned pup. Tales of a special teacher from Galilee are reaching their tiny village, but when life suddenly changes again for Barley, he carries the lessons of forgiveness and love out of the woodcarver’s home and through the dangerous roads of Roman-occupied Judea.
    On the outskirts of Jerusalem, Barley meets a homeless man and petty criminal named Samid. Together, Barley and his unlikely new master experience fresh struggles and new revelations. Soon Barley is swept up into the current of history, culminating in an unforgettable encounter with the truest master of all as he bears witness to the greatest story ever told.
    My take on this book:
    I was drawn to this book because I love reading stories where we see it unfold through the eyes of an animal. With this story we have Barley a dog who witnesses one of the most amazing times in history. Thing is there were parts of this book that I enjoyed, but there were also parts of this book that really didn't click for me. First of all I really struggled getting through the first several chapters. Why you ask? Well the writing was sluggish and for me felt a bit choppy. When Barley finally arrives in Jerusalem things really started to pick up though because he is there during the last days of Jesus. I loved Barley and felt like he was a wonderfully unique character and watching the scenes take place through his eyes were quite vivid and easily pulled me into the setting, and I could just imagine being there. Overall I would have to say that I enjoyed this book once I got  past the first several chapters, thing is I really struggled with getting past them. In my opinion it's not a purchase worthy book instead it would be one that I would borrow from my public library. I would also like to caution that there are some violent scenes in the book as well.
    A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review purposes.


    Ron MarascoRon Marasco is a professor in the College of Communication and Fine Arts at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. His first book, “Notes to an Actor,” was named by the American Library Association an Outstanding Book of 2008. His second book, “About Grief,” has been translated into multiple languages, and he is currently completing a book on Shakespeare’s sonnets. He has acted extensively on TV—from “Lost” to “West Wing” to “Entourage” to originating the role of Mr. Casper on “Freaks and Geeks”—and appeared opposite screen legend Kirk Douglas in the movie “Illusion,” for which he also wrote the screenplay. Most recently, he has played the recurring role of Judge Grove on “Major Crimes.” He has a BA from Fordham at Lincoln Center and an MA and Ph. D. from UCLA.
    Find out more about Ron at

    Tuesday, February 14, 2017

    Stitching Tuesday

    My progress on the Cat Magnet from last week. I stitch on this a few minutes a day.

    So close to having this first block done. I am planning on stitching a cat or heart or something between my name and the year. My stitching plans are to get the first and second block finished on Houses Of Hawk Run Hollow before March 1. 

    Tuesday, February 7, 2017

    Stitching Tuesday

    While I have always been an avid reader I also hold a great love for stitching and crafts in general. Reading and stitching is my way of unwinding after a long work day.  I normally crochet lap robes for local nursing homes but this past fall I finally picked up counted cross stitch again. So I plan on starting a new Tuesday feature that will focus on whatever I am stitching for the week. So let's begin.

    I am working on The Houses of Hawk Run Hollow.
    Houses of Hawk Run Hollow - Cross Stitch Pattern
     Here is what the project will look like.

    Here is my progress. My goal is to finish this by Dec. 2017 by doing a block a month. I started this block last weekend so I really feel like it is a very do able goal. 

    I am also working on this quick stitch:

    I plan on updating each Tuesday with stitching progress and even plan on doing posts that revolve around the various stitching tools I use, along with tips, tricks, tricks, techniques, along with links to useful stitching pages. 

    If you're a stitcher, or do any type of crafts I would love to read your comments and check out your blog. Happy stitching, and happy reading! 

    M is for Mountain State~ By Mary Ann McCabe Riehle

    • Age Range: 6 - 9 years
    • Grade Level: 1 - 3
    • Series: Discover America State by State
    • Hardcover: 40 pages
    • Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press; 1st Printing edition (July 21, 2004)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 1585361518
    • ISBN-13: 978-1585361519

    My take on this book:
    I always enjoy reading books about my home state WV, and this little book is certainly a gem. There is plenty of information about the state of  WV written in alphabet form, from the Allegheny Mountains to the golden dome of our capitol building this book is really a delight to read, as well as being informative. The colorful illustrations really add to story and will certainly capture the imagination of young readers. I think this book would be a wonderful way to teach youngsters about the state they live in or even teach them about another state. While it is geared toward young readers I think young and old alike will enjoy learning about the Mountain State and all the beauty that it holds. I will also say that I was delighted to find that there are plenty of other alphabet books about other states which I certainly plan on checking out! If this book is any indication I think that the other state alphabet books will be great. I recommend this book, and books like it to any age group that wants to learn a bit about the state that they live in. 

    A digital copy of this book was borrowed from my local library.

    Wednesday, February 1, 2017

    The Fifth Petal ~ Brunonia Barry ~ TLC Book Tour

    The Fifth PetalAbout The Fifth Petal

    Hardcover: 448 pages
    Publisher: Crown (January 24, 2017)
    “Do you think, inside, every one of us is a killer?”
    This is the question that haunts the people of Salem, Massachusetts, in Brunonia Barry’s spellbinding, masterful new thriller, THE FIFTH PETAL (January 24, 2017; Crown), a tale of otherworldly powers, ancient myths, and a gruesome triple homicide. Ten years after her New York Times bestselling debut novel THE LACE READER became an international sensation, Barry revisits contemporary Salem, where the dark history of the paranormal continues to reverberate in the lives of the Whitney family and their neighbors. With its release, THE LACE READER became an overnight success, winning numerous awards and rave reviews from the New York TimesWashington PostTimeNew YorkPeople, and being named an Amazon Best Book of the Month. Barry, born and raised in Salem, now returns with a complex brew of suspense, seduction, and murder in her highly anticipated novel THE FIFTH PETAL.
    When a teenage boy dies suspiciously on Halloween night, Salem’s chief of police, John Rafferty, now married to gifted lace reader Towner Whitney, wonders if there is a connection between his death and Salem’s most notorious cold case, “The Goddess Murders,” in which three young women, all descended from accused Salem witches, were slashed on Halloween night in 1989. Now Rafferty must uncover who, or what, is killing the descendants of Salem’s accused witches, while keeping the town’s paranoia—all too similar to the hysteria that lead to the infamous witch trials—at bay.
    As Rafferty begins to uncover a dark chapter of Salem’s past, he finds unexpected help from Callie Cahill, the daughter of one of the Goddess victims, who has recently returned to town. Discovered at the scene of the crime when she was five years old, Callie survived the mysterious massacre with only scratches on her arms and a perfect stigmata of a five-petal rose in the palm of her bloodied hand. Now Callie, who has always been gifted with premonitions, begins to struggle with visions she doesn’t quite understand and an attraction to a man who has unknown connections to her mother’s murder. Neither Rafferty nor Callie believes the main suspect, Rose Whelan, respected local historian and honorary aunt to Callie, is guilty of murder or witchcraft. But clearing Rose’s name might mean crossing paths with a dangerous force. Were the women victims of an all-too-human vengeance, or was the devil raised in Salem that night? And if Rafferty and Callie can’t discover what happened that night, will evil rise again?
    Grounded in Salem’s true, dark history, Brunonia Barry paints a complex, eerie portrait of a modern New England town living in the past. With magical realism that will appeal to readers of Erin Morgenstern and gothic suspense echoing Deborah Harkness, THE FIFTH PETAL brings the world of Salem to life with Barry’s signature rich and twisting prose. Suspenseful, sinister, and masterfully composed, THE FIFTH PETAL is a haunting novel that will grip audiences long after the final page.

    “Banshees, lost memories, and secret pasts each play a significant role in this novel; enthusiasts of the author’s earlier work and readers interested in the history of witchcraft and the occult will enjoy this return visit to Salem.”Library Journal
    “[An] entertaining occult murder mystery.”Kirkus Reviews

    My take on this book:
    One of my favorite types of stories to read is one that grabs me by the hand and drags me along for an intense read where the twists and turns often keep my on the edge of my seat and the characters linger long after the final page. Well The Fifth Petal fit the bill to a tee. What drew me to this story initially was the fact that it reached back to the days of the Salem Witch Trials but it was the intriguing story and the way the plot came together that kept me reading until the satisfying end. The historical elements were interesting and really added to the overall story. The author's writing style flowed between past and present with a fluidity that was easy to follow and really made me feel as if I was glimpsing bits of the past. The mystery was solid, and while I had a hunch that the death from the present might be tied to the past but the how's and why's and the way the author allowed the story to play out really made this story zoom along. After reading this book I realized that this isn't the first book in this series and I so plan on going back and reading it as well because this story was just that good. A new to me author that I am glad to have discovered. 
    A complimentary copy of this book was provided to read

    Add to Goodreads badge

    Purchase Link

    Amazon | Books-A-Million

    © Scott Booth PhotographyIndieBound | Barnes & Noble

    Brunonia Barry
     is the New York Times and international best selling author of The Lace Reader and The Map of True Places. Her work has been translated into more than thirty languages. She was the first American author to win the International Women’s Fiction Festival’s Baccante Award and was a past recipient of Ragdale Artists’ Colony’s Strnad Fellowship as well as the winner of New England Book Festival’s award for Best Fiction and Amazon’s Best of the Month. Her reviews and articles on writing have appeared in The London Times and The Washington Post. Brunonia co-chairs the Salem Athenaeum’s Writers’ Committee. She lives in Salem with her husband Gary Ward and their dog, Angel. Her new novel, The Fifth Petal will be released in January 2017.About Brunonia Barry

    Connect with Brunonia

    Website | Facebook | Twitter

    Brunonia Barry’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

    Monday, January 23rd: Books Without Any Pictures
    Tuesday, January 24th: A Literary Vacation
    Wednesday, January 25th: Reading Reality
    Thursday, January 26th: Wall to Wall Books
    Friday, January 27th: 100 Pages a Day
    Monday, January 30th: Write Read Life
    Wednesday, February 1st: Kahakai Kitchen
    Thursday, February 2nd: Art @ Home
    Thursday, February 2nd: WV Stitcher
    Monday, February 6th: I Brought a Book
    Wednesday, February 8th: I Wish I Lived in a Library
    Thursday, February 9th: The Paperback Pilgrim
    Monday, February 13th: Broken Teepee
    Wednesday, February 15th: A Bookish Way of Life
    Thursday, February 16th: A Chick Who Reads
    Monday, February 20th: Patricia’s Wisdom
    Wednesday, February 22nd: Thoughts on This ‘n That

    Wednesday, January 25, 2017


    EdenEden: The Animals’ Parable (Liberty Island, April 2016)
    “Ask the animals, and they will teach you.” —Job 12:7
    Experience the Gospels in a way that you never imagined.
    In this beautifully inspired retelling of the Gospels, we see Jesus and his disciples in the Holy Land through the eyes of the animals—especially his intrepid and loyal dog, Eden.
    With a wise, old donkey, innocent lambs, and legions of curious field mice—the animals follow their master’s journey across Galilee and onto Jerusalem, rapt with awe and wonder and bearing great tidings—even if they don’t fully comprehend the divine events they witness.
    Simple, clear, and spiritually profound, Eden is for readers of all ages, this artful retelling is captivating, moving, and alive with the joy you felt the first time you opened the Bible.

    My take on this book:
    I find myself enjoying reading stories from the perspective of animals and with this one seeing the stories of the Bible unfold through the eyes of a dog, Eden was unique and told in a refreshing way. She was such a sweet little dog that had a wonderful perspective on what she was seeing.The illustrations were wonderfully done and brought the text to life and the stories really made me think about the Bible stories that I already knew. A book that is perfect to read to youngsters and older children as well as adults will enjoy reading this one themselves. A unique take on familiar stories in the Bible that are written in a way that allow not only the story but the characters to leap from the pages! 
    A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review.

    Keith Korman


    Keith Korman is a literary agent and novelist. Over the years he has represented many nationally-known writers of fiction and non-fiction at his family’s literary agency, Raines & Raines. The idea for “Eden” first came to him as a child when he saw the little calf jump across the stable in the prelude to William Wyler’s “Ben Hur.” And he’s been thinking about it ever since.
    Find out more about Keith at

    Return to the story of Jesus and read it from a new perspective in Keith Korman’s Eden: The Animals’ Parable. In this beautifully inspired retelling of the Gospels, we see Jesus and his disciples in the Holy Land through the eyes of the animals—especially his intrepid and loyal dog, Eden. Simple, clear, and spiritually profound, Eden is for readers of all ages, this artful retelling is captivating, moving, and alive with the joy you felt the first time you opened the Bible.

    Settle in for some winter reading and enter to win a copy of Keith’s book and a Kindle Fire!
    One grand prize winner will receive:
    • A copy of Eden
    • A Kindle Fire
    Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on January 24. The winner will be announced January 25 on Keith’s blog.