Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Urgent!

I am breaking the hiatus just for this moment, so that I can ask everyone reading this to rate some book reviews I wrote. The contest ends tomorrow night and I need a large boost of ratings. I am about 40 ratings short, but if I can have even more than that it would be wonderful. If you can rate them, that's great. If you already have, or if you want to help out even more, can you please ask the rest of your family to also rate them, and your friends as well? I am seriously in need of a new computer, and that happens to be the prize of this contest. Please rate them! http://noahsreads.blogspot.com/2011/05/crisis-i-need-your-help.html

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Winner of Unplanned dvd!

Well, there were a record amount of entries on this giveaway. A record low, lol. It must be because most of you readers are really interested in fiction books, rather than nonfiction dvds :). I understand :) Or maybe I just didn't get the word out enough. :S Anyway, there were 8 entries total. So now I will press the *magic* button that tells me who wins! (random.org)


And the winner is...

Sarah Elizabeth!!!


Congratulations!!! I will email you for your mailing address soon. If you don't respond to that in a week, another winner will be chosen.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Short hiatus

Note: none of what is said in this post will affect the giveaway. I will continue to accept entries and comments.

Because of school, and other pursuits, I am going to leave this blog alone until the second week of June, at which point I will have finished school. After that, the wheels should start turning once again. See you in a month!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Dragons of the Watch cover art



The cover for Donita K. Paul's next book Dragons of the Watch has been released! I love the books in the background.



Sunday, May 8, 2011

Unplanned dvd giveaway (CLOSED)

Tyndale has graciously allowed me to give away a copy of the pro-life documentary about Abby Johnson, Unplanned. You can read my review of it here: http://noahsreads.blogspot.com/2011/05/unplanned-dvd.html

Rules-


All comments should include an email in no-spam form. [johndoe(at)example(dot)com]
Open to U.S. and Canada residents only.
  1. You must do this to be eligible for any other points. You can follow this blog. A follower widget is located on the blog's sidebar. (earns 1 entry)
  2. You can follow my pro-life blog Worth Fighting For (http://wearefightingfor.blogspot.com). A follower widget is located on the blog's sidebar. (earns 2 entries)
  3. You can post about this giveaway on your blog. Comments MUST have a link. Limited to once a week. (earns 2 entries)
  4. If someone comes to this blog from your blog post and comments, you get one extra entry. (Tell them to say you sent them!)
  5. You can tweet with a link to this post. Comments MUST have a link. Limited to once a day (earns 1 entry each)
  6. You can add my blog button (located on my sidebar) to your site. Comment MUST have a link. (earns 2 entries)
  7. You can read any of my reviews or interviews on this blog and comment on it, as long as you have not already done so on that one for another giveaway. (earns 1 entry each)
  8. You may link to this giveaway on facebook. Comments don't require links, since I am not a member of facebook. However, you MUST email me an image of your status. My email is manuscriptna(at)gmail(dot)com. Limited to once a day. (earns 1 entry each)
This giveaway ends Saturday, May 28th, 11:59 PM PST

Crazy Enough - Mercyme

On the subject of changing the world. A good song to go with Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris or Outlive Your Life by Max Lucado.



Saturday, May 7, 2011

Ratings

I Kissed Dating Goodbye

I understood Joshua Harris’ viewpoint on dating really well. Frankly, I just about agree with him. The worldly view of dating equates love with sex, and that premarital intimacy is expected. This is not how Christians are to see dating and marriage. I am certainly no master in this subject, but this book is very thorough and convicting.

The solution that Harris gives, “kissing dating good-bye,” has a good reason behind it. He states that dating can easily be taken to extremes, such as a late-night car ride, and then it takes the focus off of God, and isn’t done for the glory of God. Harris urges us to pursue marriage in such a way that glorifies God, rather than ourselves.

Where I disagree with Harris is where he thinks dating should not happen. However, to his credit, he only applies it to himself. He encourages us to date, as long as God, and not us, is given the focus. He also warns us not to use that as an excuse to follow passion and selfish pleasure.

Overall, I recommend this book highly, because it gives a wonderful overview of dating; how it should be done, and how it shouldn’t.




Crisis - I need your help

As many of you know, I am part of Waterbrook Multnomah's Blogging For Books program. The program has contests in which bloggers post reviews on the site and have friends and readers rate them 1-5 stars. Recently, however, the program has encountered bloggers who are running the system by voting on multiple computers, and has reset all ratings for all reviews. Therefore, I am going to post the rating devices once again, so that I can get ratings back. If you could help with this by rating the reviews, it would be very, very helpful. Just as a warning though, there will be methods to ensure that people do not rate multiple times. So, here are the reviews.

The Charlatan's Boy

I am getting a great hankering for the southern style of writing. Roger's character development is reminiscent of the style of Flannery O'Connor. The southern grammar and vocabulary were very entertaining!

I found it interesting that Grady had very wise insights, such as when he reflected that townspeople can learn more about themselves from their neighbors than from a "phrenologist," someone who can determine character traits from indentations in a skull. He only thinks of the feechie act as "an honest trade" while he thinks he really is a feechie. For a show assistant, he is quite honest.

Rogers' characters are great fun! Ranging from the trickster Floyd, to the compassionate Short Fronie, to the whooping drovers, I had a glimpse of a different world.

I recommend this to anyone who likes adventure and a show, because this book is full of it!






Dragons of the Valley


Honestly, I wasn’t expecting a lot, and my expectation was right, in a way. The plot wanders, and it’s hard to tell where it will go next, even though you think you know where it will end up. A lot of time often passed between chapters, without being hinted at, and that was confusing. The only character not revealed much was Tipper, even though she was the main character in the previous book. Beolomondore is the main character in this one.

The other characters, however, were where I was wrong. I really, really enjoyed them! They are what drove this story. Wizard Fenworth’s absent-minded way of things kept me laughing, Hollee’s cheerful inquiries brightened my mood, Lady Peg’s meandering, critical speech bewildered and fascinated me, and Rayn’s antics had me wishing I had a minor dragon of my own! If you don’t mind a vague plot, and prefer good and interactive characters, this is the book for you!





Auralia's Colors

Writing a review of this book is hard. There are few books you can easily compare it to, one being the Bible. It is its own tapestry. Overstreet weaves in colors hinting at joy, intrigue, betrayal, and desire. The color metaphors never got old, which shows his mastery of allegory. Many finer points of this allegory are hidden deep and are hard to discern. The Keeper is an interesting creature to note. I have been told it is not in fact a representation of the Creator, though it would seem that way.

Auralia’s character, along with those of the others, was carefully and wonderfully crafted throughout this Red Strand.

The ending left me breathless and sad, but I look forward to the next Strand! I believe this will become a classic in the allegory genre, alongside C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia!





Sir Quinlan and the Swords of Valor

This is the first book by Chuck Black I have read. Considering that, I found the introduction of the "Life Spice" a little corny. ("...the King used the power of of the Life Spice to raise His Son from the dead.") To a non-believer, this may merely seem like a child's immediate solution to an invincible monster's killing of his favorite hero toy. But, if the Life Spice is explained sufficiently in previous books, the reader should not encounter this feeling.

  Coming back to my first encounter with Mr. Black's books, I liked it very much! I didn't need to foreknow anything to understand it; I felt as if I were reading the first volume. A medieval society is oft-used in fantasy fiction, but often works well for Christian allegory. Such is the case in this fifth volume. I also found it easy to lose myself in it; I read it in one day! The idea of an elite fighting force such as the Silent Warriors always excites and entices me. However, near the end of the book, about 9 months of training pased without enough detail. It seemed as if the story was under a deadline, and could have been developed more at that point. I was disappointed that Mr. Black hardly described the training procedures, as they are my favorite parts of medieval tales.

  The kingdoms of light and darkness, the paythas that brought on apathy, and fighting for the King and His Prince were all great themes! The characters were quite realistic, but after Quinlan's 9 months of training, he was greatly matured, but it felt too sudden for me.

  The conclusion to this story was very powerful! It portrays the 2nd coming of Christ, and leaves both Christians and unbelievers with a question: "Have you given your life to the King?" This question and the knightly lessons learned in Arrethtrae appy to the reverse of that land's name, our temporary home.




Friday, May 6, 2011

I Kissed Dating Good-bye

I Kissed Dating Goodbye (updated edition), Joshua Harris, Multnomah, Nonfiction/Young Adult, 2003, 221 pages.

I Kissed Dating Goodbye (Revised) (Paperback)Synopsis: Joshua Harris's first book, written when he was only 21, turned the Christian singles scene upside down...and people are still talking. More than 800,000 copies later, I Kissed Dating Goodbye, with its inspiring call to sincere love, real purity, and purposeful singleness, remains the benchmark for books on Christian dating. Now, for the first time since its release, the national #1 bestseller has been expanded with new content and updated for new readers. Honest and practical, it challenges cultural assumptions about relationships and provides solid, biblical alternatives to society's norm.

My thoughts: I understood Joshua Harris’ viewpoint on dating really well. Frankly, I just about agree with him. The worldly view of dating equates love with sex, and that premarital intimacy is expected. This is not how Christians are to see dating and marriage. I am certainly no master in this subject, but this book is very thorough and convicting.

The solution that Harris gives, “kissing dating good-bye,” has a good reason behind it. He states that dating can easily be taken to extremes, such as a late-night car ride, and then it takes the focus off of God, and isn’t done for the glory of God. Harris urges us to pursue marriage in such a way that glorifies God, rather than ourselves.

Where I disagree with Harris is where he thinks dating should not happen. However, to his credit, he only applies it to himself. He encourages us to date, as long as God, and not us, is given the focus. He also warns us not to use that as an excuse to follow passion and selfish pleasure.

Overall, I recommend this book highly, because it gives a wonderful overview of dating; how it should be done, and how it shouldn’t.


*This book was provided free by Blogging For Books. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions expressed are my own.*

Rating: 5 stars





Upcoming reviews:
  • And The Beat Goes On by Tracy Krauss
  • Alpha Redemption by P.A. Baines

Buy I Kissed Dating Goodbye
Check out more books on Christian dating
Check out Joshua Harris' website


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Unplanned (the dvd)

Unplanned: The Dramatic True Story of a Former Planned Parenthood Leaders' Eye-Opening Journey - DVD   -     
        By: Abby Johnson, Cindy Lambert
    Unplanned, Tyndale House, 2011, Abby Johnson, documentary

Watch the trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZC6thU987CY

Synopsis: After the director of a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas participated in her first abortion procedure, she quit her job and walked across the road to join the Coalition for Life. In this heart-stopping documentary, you'll discover how Abby Johnson's spiritual transformation instills hope and compassion into the political controversy surrounding this difficult issue. Approx. 60 minutes.

My thoughts: Unplanned tells a story the likes we dance for joy to hear. Abby Johnson, who grew up in a Christian home in Texas, found herself leaning towards the defense of women who were derided by condemning Christians. Eventually, she found herself regretting her decision, and chose to defend unborn lives instead. With the help of 40 Days For Life and Coalition For Life, she tells her story for us all to hear. It is an amazing encouragement in the arena of pro-choice vs. pro-life.

My rating: 5 stars

A FREE Unite For Life webcast is coming up on May 17th, at 8:00 p.m. (all time zones). To register for this free webcast, go to www.uniteforlifewebcast.org

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Sword of the Dragon cover art!

Scott Appleton has released an image of the cover art for his newest book Key of Living Fire! Behold it in all it's great glory!