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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Book Review -- Hobbits, You, and the Spiritual World of Middle Earth

Jill Richardson pulls from J. R. R. Tolkien's book The Hobbit  to present Christian principles. Each chapter focuses on a different character in the book, along with their strength's and weaknesses. Richardson overlays this with with clever tie ins to biblical characters, and their spiritual journey. She includes questions at the end which could be used for personal reflection or for group Bible study.  The casual voice and simple presentation seems to have a style that would suit teens well. The book would work best as a supplement after reading the Hobbit. I praise Richardson for this unique and original study. I think this book would be a great tool for youth leaders to use with their groups.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Book Launch and Book Giveaway, Lessons of Life

I'm hosting Ron Millicent, a first time author who has two books out at the same time. 

Ron is giving away one copy of Lessons of Life. To enter, comment below this post, leaving your name and letting me know what interests you about either of Ron's new books. The contest is open to U. S. residents only.

A bit more about Ron...

He claims no advanced degrees in psychology, but he has an insightful way of bringing  `home` the lessons he has learned over several decades. He was raised in Hawaii (before it was a state – go figure). He lived in France as a young man. He taught English – (with absolutely no teaching experience) in a Greek Island. 

He was stranded in Germany- not speaking German – with no money- of any kind.
He came out of heart surgery cracking jokes. And he has been married for 5 decades – same spouse (go figure). He connived a prime posting in the army – and even fibbed about being a carpenter to get out of the rain.

Interesting  fellow – good tales, good insight.

Lessons of Life:
This book was written as a result of my sister saying one day, “You know that to have lived for over 70 years, we must have learned something! That got me thinking:

I was raised in Hawaii – before it was a state; I lived in France for two years as a young man; I have been thrown off a train in Germany in a small town – in the middle of nowhere with no money, and no German language skills; I have been to 16 countries, and about a dozen islands;  I taught English on a Greek island for a few weeks – and did so having absolutely no experience as a teacher; and actually had 
surgeons laughing during a heart procedure. I have been married for 49 years (same woman – poor soul) and have lived from counting quarters to go to McDonalds – to having meals in Paris, Rome – and Athens - -- and then back to McDonalds!You know, I would have to have been a moron not to learn certain things along the way.

Now, assuming you are younger than I am – the odds are pretty good that you can learn something from my experiences, and rambling.  I actually think you can!
You have nothing to lose!  Well, $7.00 something, I guess.  Heck, you can lose that by buying one greasy hamburger – and a coke that is no good for you anyway.
Give me a shot!  I’ll bet you will get some laughs, and – who knows – maybe a little insight.Go ahead!

Successful Habits:

I wrote this book after being dismayed about all the publicity about `The Secret` and various renditions of the Law of Attraction.  While completely valid, all the hype was that somehow someone had `discovered` the secrets of life – and for a paltry $99 - $???? They would share these marvelous secrets with you.  The promise was that it would change your life. The truth is – as I see it – that the ` secret ` is really no secret at all.  The most ancient writings tell of it – as well as the Bible. Actually the Bible is full of these `secrets’.

You can pick up a Bible for far less than one of these courses will cost!
So, being dismayed at the proliferation of these `clandestine revelations’, I vowed to bring to the surface that what was lacking in our society was not some `covert source’ of information, but rather the application of these principles. So, this little handbook was born.  It goes into the actual application of these beliefs, or laws, and does it 
with humor and wit.  Each page has a saying, or representation of some type, to make the point in that chapter.

And rather than relying on these purported `secrets` - it actually ties the principles to one of the newest branches of science – Quantum Physics.  Isn’t that interesting?
You will find that it is a fun read – and a very insightful step-buy-step guide for the person who really truly wants to live a fuller life. There is no hype about becoming a multi-millionaire in the next 90 minutes, but it does provide a program – which can (and should) change your life for the better – in very short order. 


Friday, December 6, 2013


Samantha, who has weathered teen motherhood and now the loss of her husband from a marriage of convenience, has car troubles while traveling through Montana with her teenage daughter. They are picked up by a limo and brought to the home of a mysterious stranger who is battling cancer.

The plot is a bit of a stretch—what is the likelihood that a perfect stranger would allow them to stay in his home for weeks?  Still, the ploy works. I loved the character of Daffyd and found him sensitive and compelling. It’s rare to find a book I can’t put down, but this one was a page turner for me because she hooked me and I wanted to know what was going to happen to him and if they would end up together.

There were a few issues, such as an info dump at the beginning and some editing issues, and the unlikelihood that everyone in Daffyd’s life would be a Christian, but the  characters are likable, the situation compelling and realistic most of the time. The  unique plot and a good story cancel out the other issues.   I give it four stars.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Book Giveaway - The Unexpected Enlightenment of Rachel Griffin by L. Jagi Lamplighter

Today's guest author, L. Jagi Lamplighter, loves to write fantasy. She has a new release, The Unexpected Enlightenment of Rachel Griffin. a young adult fiction for girls in the vein of the Harry Potter series.

I'm giving away one Kindle copy of the book. To enter this drawing, leave a comment below in the comments section with your email and why you would like to win this book.

Here's a blurb about the book:

Rachel Griffin wants to know everything. As a freshman at Roanoke Academy for the Sorcerous Arts, she has been granted to opportunity to study both mundane and magical subjects.

But even her perfect recollection of every book she has ever read does not help her when she finds a strange statue in the forest—a statue of a woman with wings. Nowhere—neither in the arcane tomes of the Wise, nor in the dictionary and encyclopedia of the non-magic-using Unwary—can she find mention of such a creature.

What could it be? And why are the statue’s wings missing when she returns? When someone tries to kill a fellow student, Rachel soon realizes that, in the same way her World of the Wise hides from mundane folk, there is another, more secret world hiding from everyone—which her perfect recall allows her to remember. Her desire to know everything drives her to investigate.

Rushing forward where others fear to tread, Rachel finds herself beset by wraiths, magical pranks, homework, a Raven said to bring the doom of worlds, love’s first blush, and at least one fire-breathing teacher.

Curiosity might kill a cat, but nothing stops Rachel Griffin!

Trade paper on Amazon:

Kindle on Amazon:

The author's blog:


Twitter: @lampwright4