Tuesday, June 27, 2017

We Stood Upon Stars by Roger W. Thompson

We Stood Upon Stars by Roger W. Thompson is an outdoors person's book written by an outdoorsman.  Roger grew up in Ventura, California and though he had a father his grandfather was a much more important person to his growing to be the person that he was.  Roger's father used drugs and couldn't be the father he needed to be.  Roger's grandfather on the other hand came to California tied to the back of his father, the preacher riding on a motorcycle escaping the Dust Bowl and the depression.  Roger's grandfather stepped up and was there for Roger when his father was not.  He taught Roger to appreciate the wildlife, the surfing, and traveling to see what this country has to offer.  Roger wants to be to his boys what his grandfather was to him.  Roger wants to teach the boys self-reliance and appreciation of their surroundings.  Roger wants to teach his boys to be men.  This book tells of Roger's teachings, his self-doubt, his shortfalls and the passing on of Christianity so that they can also be men to be proud of.  Roger and his wife, Melissa, take the boys camping, hiking, and fly-fishing, but perhaps most importantly they teach the boys the importance of the creator God.  They learn of God in nature as well as in church.  Their Christianity is the backbone of their family. 

There are 32 hand drawn maps as well as other artwork contained in this book all drawn by the author's mother, Elain.  This book could be the backbone of an outdoorsy family vacation if the reader wishes.  There are so many interesting places to visit contained in the book that do not find their way into the usual tourist books.  There are cities to visit which are well known in the tourist books but these places and restaurants are different ones than the usual. The places that the people to live there would go because the food is good.  I think this book would be good for anyone who wants to backpack or camp in the United States. Places that need to be seen before they are ruined by tourists or just overpopulation moving into the quiet places.
I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Kids NIV Visual Study Bible

Kids NIV Visual Study Bible is such a great easy to read Bible to study for kids but may I suggest that you buy it in the plainer leather like cover for yourself.  The writing is in the popular New International Version but there are so many study helps and pictures that the Bible is fun to read and study.  The pictures are not the simple drawings that one expects to find in a study Bible for children but rather actual pictures of for instance a model of Herod's temple or an actual sycamore fig tree in the Holy Land or Jews praying at the Wailing Wall.  There are little references in the outer column telling more information right beside where the story is in the Bible such as in Isaiah in the story of the prophecy against Arabia it talks of  the caravans of Dedanites and to the side in the column it tells that they were an Arabian merchant tribe who were attacked by the Assyrians and later by the Babylonians.  You don't have to look and see if it is footnoted and then look somewhere else, the explanation is right there beside the story.  Cool, huh?
This Bible is the complete Bible not just stories that would interest kids which is another reason why I plan to use this Bible for my own personal use.  Beginning each different book in the Bible is the title of course but in addition there is the author, why it was written, for whom it was written, a little bit about its importance, or the stories, or how it pertains to kids.  On page 239 the Bible wants to further reiterate that God showers his people with grace time after time so there is a large faint picture background of clouds with rain and over that is printed various times of grace that God gave His people in drops of water along with the reference where it can be found in the Bible.  This type of illustration is use time after time using different themes and subjects.

This Bible would make a good first complete Bible gift for any child capable of reading the text.  This Bible could take the child not only through childhood but also into adulthood.  This Bible has all the parts that one has grown to expect in a Bible including maps in the back along with table of weights and measures, and an infographics index. I would recommend this Bible for any reader wishing to study the Bible.
I received this book from Handlebar for this review.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

An Amish Summer by Shelley Shepard Gray, Amy Clipston, Kathleen Fuller and Kelly Irvin

An Amish Summer by Shelley Shepard Gray, Amy Clipston, Kathleen Fuller and Kelly Irvin contains four novellas for your reading pleasure.  In the first Sharon and Sherilyn are sisters who are returning to Shipshewana for a little vacations with a couple of girlfriends.  Sherry has been writing Graham Holland since the last time the two of them met at a wedding.  Sherry is the plainer of the two sisters and since her sister is such a looker she doesn't get much notice.  Graham is also a quiet man but he thinks that he is writing to the beautiful sister.  When the two meet again he realizes his mistake but doesn't know how to tell them.  He doesn't even remember meeting Sherry but decides to get to know both girls better in order to decide who he likes better.  He talks this over with his friend, Toby who is also on the trip with Graham.  Toby would like to get to know Sharon but he is disgusted that Graham wants to keep both of them until he makes up his mind.  Toby says that if Graham won't tell them then he will so Graham tells the girls.  Of course they are just furious with him and don't want to speak to him.  How will this summer vacation end?

In the 2nd novella Amy Clipston tells the story of the summer before Arianna is to marry Jesse.  They have been friends all their life but as they grew up this friendship grew into a love that both wanted to last a lifetime.  Arianna's brother Tobias is Jesse's best friend but Tobias has been brooding lately and seems kind of depressed.  Tobias has been fighting with his father lately about taking over the family farm.  Tobias is the only son and is expected to inherit the farm but he doesn't want to farm and has been drinking to avoid the constant fighting with his dad.  The day that Tobias got drunk and wrecked the buggy because he was driving the horse so recklessly was the final straw with his father.  The two had a horrible fight and Tobias ran off that night to live with a relative in another state.   Marvin Arianna's dad also said that Arianna and Jesse had to stop seeing each other and it was Jesse's fault that Tobias started drinking and wrecked the buggy.  What to do? Arianna is so sad but she knows that she can't go against her father.  How will they all survive the summer?

In the 3rd novella Kathleen Fuller writes of Esther and Sarah Coblentz.  Sarah is beautiful and Esther is not.  Sarah is very social and everybody wants to date her and Esther is not.  Esther has loved her father's hired hand Judah for as long as she can remember but Judah only has eyes for Sarah.  Judah only thinks of Esther as Sarah's sister and treats her kind of like a sister.  The only person that seems to have noticed that Esther has eyes for Judah is her brother, Rueben. Rueben teases her about it and tells her not to be so obvious about it but also gives her hope that maybe someday Judah will love her in return.  That summer Esther's parents have allowed a college intern to stay at their home to learn about the Amish religion.  Sarah notices the good looking intern, Rhett, and wants to interest him in her but Rhett seems only interested in learning about the farm and how it works.  Rhett in fact only notices Esther which makes Sarah very jealous.  Esther is very interested in Rhett but only as a friend and quickly finds out that Rhett is engaged to his sweetheart back at home.  The interest that Rhett shows to Esther makes Judah notice Esther and for the first time as a woman that he could be interested in as a lifetime partner.  Will Judah and Esther ever get together?

In the final novella Ms. Irvin tells of the sweet love story of Martha Byler and Jacob King.  Martha is very concerned that Jacob only seems interested in having fun and none in growing up.  Martha is also concerned that even though her father has remarried and everyone loves their new mother Martha feels responsible for caring for her younger brothers and sisters as she has done since she was a preteen.  Jacob feels that he IS grown up but he just wants to have a little fun.  This is the summer that Martha learns to trust Jacob's judgment and Jacob figures out that maybe he does need to change some of his behaviors if he wants to be Martha's husband.  The sweet story has a few twists and turns as Martha and Jacob learn to rely on each other and truly love each other.

These novellas are a great read for summer time pleasure.  You will not be sorry that you purchased this thick book to enjoy these stories.
I received this book from BookLook for this review.