BOOK FUN MAGAZINE - FREE READ

I CAN ONLY IMAGINE PICTURE BOOK REVIEWED



I can Only Imagine
By Bart Millard
With Laura Neutzling
Illustrated by Sumiti Collina

ABOUT BOOK: Encourage your children’s sense of wonder and faith with I Can Only Imagine, inspired by the hit song by MercyMe. This beautiful picture book will capture your family’s childlike faith and imagination. 

I Can Only Imagine asks questions a child might ask and invites families to wonder together: What is heaven like? What does God do? What would it be like to spend a day with Jesus? Children will see that although experiencing the glory of heaven may be far off, we can enjoy a friendship with Jesus every day - right here on earth. Whimsical, playful illustrations and thought-provoking questions make this a book that families will cherish.

Fun and vibrant illustrations offer a vivid visual and will help your children see that God can be found everywhere, every day.

REVIEW: Author Bart Millard is the recording artist behind the hit song that touched me to the core of my being along with millions of others around the world; as this artist imagines heaven and what we’ll do there.

This hard-back book is beautifully illustrated and depicts a young boy, his family and dog as they talk about heaven; what it might be like, what you do there, and other interesting questions; like will I have to brush my teeth, and hair. What will we eat? Will we build tree houses? If so, what could they look like?

The boy gets more excited as he imagines the possibilities and adventures there could be in heaven. The boy wonders about ice cream? “It’s a heavenly treat! Strawberry swirl is my favorite to eat. I bet heaven serves ice cream before lunch each day. And the scoops are ginormous, like the ice cream bouquet.”

As the day closes and night falls; he looks at the night sky he thinks, “I’m sure of one thing that will always be true – I don’t have to wait to spend time with you! You’re here in my heart. Your spirit will guide. You’ll never leave me. You’ll stay by my side!”

This book is a fun adventure that will help generate great discussions with your family about faith, hope and love. Great companion to the song and new movie. Keeping the main thing the main thing.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from BookLookfor bloggers site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine https://tinyurl.com/y9lwbfrs
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JAMES RUBART'S NEW NOVEL THE MAN HE NEVER WAS REVIEWED


The Man He Never Was
By James L. Rubart
Published by Thomas Nelson
ISBN#978-0718099398
371 Pages 14 Discussion Questions
Release Date February 20, 2018
Classics & Allegories, Contemporary Fiction

ABOUT BOOK: What if You Woke up One Morning and the Darkest Parts of Yourself Were Gone?

Toren Daniels vanished eight months back, and his wife and kids have moved on—with more than a little relief. Toren was a good man but carried a raging temper that often exploded without warning. So when he shows up on their doorstep out of the blue, they’re shocked to see him alive. But more shocked to see he’s changed. Radically.
His anger is gone. He’s oddly patient. Kind. Fun. The man he always wanted to be. Toren has no clue where he’s been but knows he’s been utterly transformed. He focuses on three things: Finding out where he’s been. Finding out how it happened. And winning back his family.

But then shards of his old self start to rise from deep inside—like the man kicked out of the NFL for his fury—and Toren must face the supreme battle of his life.
In this fresh take on the classic Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, James L. Rubart explores the war between the good and evil within each of us—and one man’s only chance to overcome the greatest divide of the soul.

REVIEW: I was instantly caught up in Toren Daniels quandary; as he wakes up in a strange place and doesn’t know how he got there. If that wasn’t scary enough he discovers he’s been presumed dead by the world because he went missing eight months ago. Crazy thing is he doesn’t remember any part of the past months.

Toren felt something new inside. Something he’d never experience before; a peace he felt bubbling through his entire being. He’s puzzled. Where did it come from? Where has he been for eight months? What did they do to him there? He must have answers.

I was hooked from the first page. I couldn’t put this novel down. I was just as curious as Toren was about where he’d been all that time and how his anger wasn’t controlling him anymore. What happened to him that he couldn’t remember? Toren begins to think seriously about life and his future. I liked how this book gradually build in momentum throughout, resulting in a gripping and compelling conclusion.

This author grabbed my heart and imagination by his brilliant contemporary re-imaging of the Jekyll & Hyde story. There were characters you cheered for and others you didn’t like very much, each were well developed. It makes me want to go and read the original story and see how they differ. This was a fun novel giving readers a hopeful thought provoking ride. We are all on a journey filled with opportunities; reminded of the fact we always have choices of which path to walk down. We can have hope if we accept the invitation and walk on the narrow trail and agony if we don’t. No one said the path would be easy. This is a great novel for a book club pick. The author includes 14 discussion questions. There is so much to discuss
  

ABOUT AUTHOR: James L. Rubart is 28 years old, but lives trapped inside an older man's body. He thinks he's still young enough to water ski like a madman and dirt bike with his two grown sons and loves to send readers on journeys they'll remember months after they finish one of his stories.

He's the best-selling, Christy, Carol, INSPY, and RT Book Reviews award winning author of eight novels as well as a professional speaker. During the day he runs his marketing company which helps businesses, authors, and publishers make more coin of the realm. He lives with his amazing wife on a small lake in eastern Washington. More at www.jameslrubart.com More at http://jameslrubart.com/ and on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/JamesLRubart

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from blogging for books. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine https://tinyurl.com/y9lwbfrs
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SO MUCH TO CELEBRATE by KATIE JACOBS REVIEWED


ABOUT BOOK: Celebrations that show your love. Create beautiful memories for your family and friends by stopping to celebrate life’s joyful moments. In this essential guide to entertaining, Katie Jacobs reveals her secrets for throwing fantastic parties for any occasion, from a casual backyard movie night to a lavish holiday party. Using Katie’s inspiring ideas and make-ahead tips, you will be so organized that you can minimize the fuss, enjoy the time, and celebrate too!

Brimming with creative party themes for every season, inspiring d├ęcor ideas, and delicious recipes, So Much to Celebrate is the perfect book for anyone who appreciates good times, good food, and good celebrations.

 REVIEW: This lovely hard back book has so many imaginative ideas and recipes inside for celebrating with your family all year long. I was surprised at all the beautiful color pictures inside showing off recipes and party decorations.

The book is broken up into seasons Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter each section has four or five party ideas. I was very impressed by the Easter Egg Hunt and Mother's Day Tea Party are over the top. This is an idea book with yummy recipes inside. The reader can take bits and pieces of the total party layout and make it their own. Some of the recipes I'd like to try in that section are Hummingbird Cake, Sarah Darling's Tiffany Vanilla Macaroons, Lemon Whoopie Pies with Lavender Icing and Easter Bunny cupcakes.Each one of these have a gorgeous picture of food, deserts and salads. She even includes a few gluten-free recipes.

One of the recipes that blew me away was the ones for the milkshake social. They are s'mores, strawberry sweet tooth and peanut butter pretzel milkshakes. Each of these look like amazing; you'd most definitely need help eating them. The book includes comfort food favorites Southern Skillet Cream biscuits, Popovers, Chicken Pot Pie, Lasagna, Pot roast and more. 
The recipe I made was for Salted Oatmeal Cornflake Cookies; my family loved them. The ingredients are easy to find, her instructions simple to follow and each recipe has a make it ahead option. I highly recommend this book as a special gift and/or to use yourself.

ABOUT AUTHOR: Katie Jacobsis a stylist for Reese Witherspoon’s lifestyle brand Draper James, Pottery Barn, and Beaufort Bonnet Company, among others. A fourth-generation Nashvillian, she’s been featured in Martha Stewart Living, Southern Living Weddings, Nashville Lifestyles as well as on Inspired By This, Fashionable Hostess, and The Scout Guide. Katie is also a photographer, graphic designer, and foodie. Learn more on Katie’s food and lifestyle blog, StylingMyEveryday.com.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from blogging for books. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine https://tinyurl.com/y9lwbfrs
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A VERY HAPPY EASTER PRAYER BB REVIEWED



A Very Happy Easter Prayer
By Bonnie Rickner Jensen
Illustrated by Natalia Moore
Published by Tommy Nelson
ISBN#978-0718075231
24 Pages Released January 30, 2018

ABOUT BOOK: The weather is warming, flowers are blooming, and cuddly critters are leaving their nests. Join the adorable woodland animals as they thank God for all the blessings of Easter.

REVIEW: Spring is a special time where nature shows off and gives us a visual celebration of new beginnings. I love the vibrant colors of the flowers and some trees. This sweet book captures the excitement of the season. We have so much to be thankful for. Each colorful, adorable page points out something in nature to be thankful for. I like how the author rhymes each simple prayer. For example, “Thank You, God, for outdoor fun. Adventures’ everywhere - From flying kites to riding bikes to picnics we can share!

This book is fun to read, brings a smile to your face as you look at the illustrations and are reminded of the incredible nature all around us. It’s a great reminder of all the things we have to be thankful for. It’s also a great way to start a conversation with little ones about Easter, why we celebrate it at this time of year.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine https://tinyurl.com/y9lwbfrs
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ACROSS THE BLUE by CARRIE TURANSKY REVIEWED



Across the Blue
By Carrie Turansky
Published by Multnomah
ISBN#978-1601429421
352 Pages
Released date February 20, 2018

ABOUT BOOK: Set in Edwardian England and ideal for readers who enjoy Julie Klassen novels, this romance about an English aviation pioneer and the girl who falls in love with him is filled with adventure and faith.

Isabella Grayson, the eldest daughter of a wealthy, English newspaper magnate, longs to become a journalist, but her parents don't approve. They want her to marry well and help them gain a higher standing in society. After she writes an anonymous letter to the editor that impresses her father, her parents reluctantly agree she can write a series of articles about aviation and the race to fly across the English Channel, but only if she promises to accept a marriage proposal within the year. When James Drake, an aspiring aviator, crashes his flying machine at the Grayson's new estate, Bella is intrigued. James is determined to be the first to fly across the Channel and win the prize Mr. Grayson's newspaper is offering. He hopes it will help him secure a government contract to build airplanes and redeem a terrible family secret. James wants to win Bella's heart, but his background and lack of social standing make it unlikely her parents would approve. If he fails to achieve his dream, how will he win the love and respect he is seeking? Will Bella's faith and support help him find the strength and courage he needs when unexpected events turn their world upside down?

REVIEW: This is a delightful read filled with the wonder of flying machines and the race to be the first to fly across the English Channel. This author does an excellent job of sweeping readers off into a world of the past; as brave aviators are taking huge risks to do the unimaginable. I learned so much about the societal restrictions for Miss Grayson in her pursuit of being a reporter not a columnist. There is rich character development through the historical detail in the story that doesn’t bog readers down but enhances the reading experience. I liked the integrity of the main characters and their quest to achieve risky goals, the trials they face in doing so and the character flaws of James Drake and Isabella Grayson. The characters ask themselves what are they willing and not willing to do to make their dreams come true?

I enjoyed the natural spiritual thread throughout the story. Miss Grayson says“…I need to find my worth in my relationship with the Lord and who I am in Him. He loves me just as I am. Whether I write a million articles or none at all.!”I want to write for the daily mail, but I don’t want to tie my worth to that, or to any career. I want to love my father and mother and have a good relationship with them. But I don’t want to be striving to gain their approval and lose sight of who I am.”

Good word. This stand-alone is a fun read and would make for a good book club pick.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine https://tinyurl.com/y9lwbfrs
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CHLOE FLAVOR COOK BOOK REVIEWED


Chloe Flavor
By Chloe Coscarelli
Published by Clarkson Potter
ISBN#978-0-451-49962-2
272 Pages HB

ABOUT BOOK: The celebrated vegan chef makes her highly anticipated return to the cookbook world with 125 original recipes that focus on simplicity in the steps and big flavor in the food.

Chloe Coscarelli has been vegan since 2004--a time when veggie burgers were still feared by the general public. Since then, she has been at the forefront of the vegan revolution: Chloe believes that vegan can still mean mouthwatering foods, and she practices what she preaches. In Chloe Flavor, Chloe showcases new approaches to veganism with dishes like Maple Bacon Benedict, Hawaiian Teriyaki-Pineapple Burger, and Cajun Jambalaya with Scallion Biscuits. These dishes are playful, colorful, and supremely tasty. Best of all, she's made them as fast and as easy as possible because that's exactly how she likes to cook. Vegans will delight in Chloe's creativity--and carnivores won't miss the meat one bit.

REVIEW: I’m not a vegan but my family and I are working our way to a more plant-based diet. That’s why this book interested me. I liked that she starts by talking about her journey to vegan. She is a vegan chef who is committed to her craft. Opened a restaurant in New York City. She set out to prove that “animals don’t need to suffer in order for humans to eat tasty, flavorful meals.” Her favorite quote is “Stand up for what you believe in, even if you are standing alone.”
“She has personally tested and tweaked each recipe tens to hundreds of times…Nobody is making a bad meal on my watch and that is a promise.

The Chef breaks the book down into these headings: Breakfast and Brunch, Snacks and sides, Soups and Salads, Sandwiches, Burgers and tacos, Noodles and Pasta, Bowls and Plated dishes, Cocktails, smoothies and drinks and desserts. She first lists ingredients how they taste, how they can be used and what flavor they can add to your meals.

 Many of the recipes have beautiful color pictures. She lists the servicing size on the top. The ingredients are listed on the right-hand side of a description of the dish and clearly written instructions. Some recipes have a few ingredients. Others have many. Most of the ingredients can easily be found in the grocery store. The recipes I’m looking forward to trying are Matcha Chocolate Chip Muffin, Corn Carbonara, Vegan Parmesan toast, Butternut Mac, Chocolate-avocado cupcakes, Everything cookie. There are so many others, including the Beet Fettuccine Alfredo with Basil Ricotta.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Blogging for books site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine https://tinyurl.com/y9lwbfrs
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MERCER MAYER LITTLE CRITTER BOOK REVIEWED


Little Critter
Little Blessings Collection
By Mercer Mayer
Published by Tommy Nelson
ISBN#978-1400-310821
104 Pages 4+8 yrs. Preschool – 3rd grade
ABOUT BOOK: Mercer Mayer’s classic character Little Critter has a little trouble telling the truth, and forgiving his friends, and taking turns, and seeing the blessings all around him!  In the charming and oh-so-funny antics, your kids will learn important life messages as they laugh with our favorite Little Critter.
You Go First! Little Critter learns that the secret to getting along is treating others the way he wants to be treated? Which, in Little Critter’s case, means letting someone else be first.
Being Thankful On a trip to the farm, Grandma helps Little Critter understand what gratitude is and why we should be thankful for all the blessings God has given us.
It’s True! Little Critter learns quickly that lying has consequences and that telling the truth, no matter how hard, is always the right thing to do.
We All Need Forgiveness Little Critter learns why forgiveness helps heal the one who does the forgiving just as much as the one who needs forgiveness.
Young or old, fans around the world have loved Little Critter since he first came on the scene more than 40 years ago. Little Critter Little Blessings is a great collection and a great value.

REVIEW: I haven’t read anything by this author before. I enjoyed the colorful characters and the way the author tells each story. There are four stories included in this hard-back book. The first is titled You Go First. The story illustrates how forcing your way into being first all the time doesn’t make people around you feel good. In the end letting others go first shows respect, kindness and it shows the people around you that you care.

The second story in this book is titled It’s True. Little Sister tries to keep her brother accountable when she is around to hear what he is saying. She says, “It’s not true.” But brother points that it is true. Well some of it anyway. The story illustrates that telling a half truth is lying. When brother talks to his grandpa he says, that “the truth will set you free. If you don’t tell the truth, you will never be happy.”  Great message.

The third story is titled Being Thankful It helps think about what is the meaning of thankfulness? How can we be grateful for what we have rather than be sad about what we don’t have. It’s a great message.

The fourth story in this fun, colorful book is We All Need Forgiveness. Things happen even to ourselves. It takes a lot of energy to walk around angry all the time.  The story brings out the point that we need to forgive one another and ourselves. It’s the only way to everyone can be happy.

This is an entertaining, adorable story book with four stories to love.  The illustrations they bring the message to life. These are quick reads that will soon be a story time favorite.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from BookLookforbloggers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine https://tinyurl.com/y9lwbfrs
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