Tag Archives: Christian book review

Book Review: The Princess Within for Teens: discovering your royal inheritance – by Serita Ann Jakes

The Princess Within - for teensBook: The Princess Within – for Teens: Discovering Your Royal Inheritance
Author: Serita Ann Jakes
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Date: July 1, 2014
Genre: young adult (teen girls), christian help
Pages: 183
Price: $10.79 paperback
My Rating: not a completely satisfying read, but helpful in ways

 

I received the ARC of this book from Library Thing in exchange for my honest review.

Usually books of this size I can eat up in no time; not so with this one. It took me far too long to read the whole book, and not because I am far beyond my teen years. I enjoy YA and MG and Picture books; my own writing centers around those genres, so that wasn’t the problem.

Serita Ann Jakes created a modern day Cinderella and used that as a jump off point for each chapter. That in itself was okay, but sometimes there was not much connection to the idea throughout the rest of the chapter.

The book begins with glowing letters of praise about the author from her two daughters. From there she sets up a hopeful scenario for the reader, beginning with a quiz of self-discovery and giving results to help the reader see herself as one of Disney’s princesses. Unfortunately, she didn’t follow through the same way with all the quizzes she created. In the same vein, she included short testimonies but it was puzzling to see where they were placed when a few didn’t have anything to do with the chapter they accompany.

Here are the chapter titles:

  1. Princess, why are you hiding?
  2. But everyone is invited!
  3. Parents just don’t understand?
  4. The power to choose
  5. Is that any way for a princess to act?
  6. We are family
  7. A word of truth
  8. Wash off those cinders!
  9. Dress the part
  10. Face those fears
  11. You fit right in
  12. In the powder room
  13. Where the boys are
  14. Where did the time go?
  15. Kick off your shoes
  16. Sweet dreams really do come true
  17. A prince is waiting for you

Reading those titles makes one think this is going to be such a great read! It is and it isn’t. Although the message is there it didn’t carry through smoothly with the idea presented at the beginning, as if the writing of this book was a little rushed. It felt as if the connection with God is interrupted time and again.

Although there are as a few other statements made that were amiss, there is one suggestion I was appalled to read, where the author presented a scenario about God and asked the teen reader to give her opinion. First of all it is a moot point which cannot possibly have an answer. It’s as if the author didn’t understand the holiness of God in even suggesting such a scenario could exist. It had no place in this book at all and didn’t add to it in any positive way to affirm the reader.

After reading The Princess Within for Teens, perhaps a young reader will come away with hope of her place in God and will not even notice the gaps in the presentation. Serita Jakes’ intent is to encourage her, to help her stand in the midst of the stresses and problems that each day may bring to her. If this is what the young reader is looking for, although it could use a little work, she will probably find The Princess Within for Teens to be a good beginning. The drawback is the subtitle of this book is Discovering Your Royal Inheritance and there was not much connection and teaching or encouragement in that aspect.

Serita Ann JakesThe Princess Within for Teens follows her adult edition of The Princess Within.

You can find The Princess Within for Teens on my BUY THE BOOK! page.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

Book Review: Unglued Devotional: 60 Days of Imperfect Progress – by Lysa TerKeurst

Unglued Devotional by Lysa TerKeurst
Book: UNGLUED Devotional: 60 Days of Imperfect Progress
Author: Lysa TerKeurst
Publisher: Zondervan
Date: December 18, 2012
Genre: Christian devotional
Pages: 208; paperback
Price: $12.99
My rating: An excellent, inspirational book of encouragement and comfort for women
 

I received this book from BookSneeze in exchange for an honest review.

Lysa TerKeurst is a bestselling author of fifteen books and a national speaker. She is also the president of Proverbs 31 Ministries (www.proverbs31.org), helping women learn to live lives centered on God in the midst of whatever life brings.

This devotional was written for the purpose of being a companion book to her bestselling book Unglued, which I have not read. As someone who knows what it is to become unglued, I thoroughly enjoyed each daily devotional. Lysa TerKeurst writes from a woman’s heart to a woman’s heart in such an understanding way. In doing so, she draws attention to God while He uses her words to minister to the reader.

Unglued Devotional: 60 Days of Imperfect Progress. If we are honest about it we all can testify to making imperfect progress. Lysa TerKeurst speaks from that place in easy conversational writing. She has put together a wonderful 60-day devotional that I wished could have been longer. It takes less than five minutes to read one day’s devotional, which begins with a scripture reading, followed by a Thought for the Day, and then a short reading usually consisting of a very suitable anecdote from her experience. Some are funny, some are painful to read because they are so familiar, all are encouraging and insightful. Each devotion ends in a very brief prayer that is an easy lead-in for the reader to continue on her own.

I like finding good devotionals. This is one of the best I have found. The author does not preach or talk above the reader, or talk down to the reader. She is honest, sincere, and transparent in her writing and addressed common issues in a way that made THIS reader stop and think.

If you are wanting to find a devotional that is real to your own life, easy to read, and suitable for those days when you have maybe five minutes to spare … try this one. Unglued Devotional: 60 Days of Imperfect Progress by Lysa TerKeurst is likely to stir your heart and encourage you in your walk with God and in your relationships with the people in your life.

You can find Unglued Devotional: 60 Days of Imperfect Progress listed on my BUY THE BOOK! page.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

 

 

 

Book Review: Rumors of God: Experience the Kind of Faith You’ve Only Heard About – by Darren Whitehead & Jon Tyson

Book: Rumors of God: Experience the Kind of Faith You’ve Only Heard About
Authors: Darren Whitehead & Jon Tyson
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Date: 2011
Genre: Religion
Pages: 189
Price: $15.99 US
My Rating: Inspiring, informative, encouraging for anyone seeking to be inspired, informed, encouraged in their Christian life.

I received this book from BookSneeze in exchange for an honest review.

The authors, both from Australia, received a revelation new to them, that “God’s strategy for redemption on the earth was to be carried out by the church.” They were moved to prayer, relocated to the USA where “the future of the Western church is hanging in the balance”, and set into place in ministering to hearts and lives as part of that strategy. In this book, Darren Whitehead and Jon Tyson share their vision in a clear and sincere, heartfelt manner. They include wonderful teachings, stories, and insights, which reveal “God’s kingdom coming to earth.”

Rumors of God is divided into ten chapters, each with a subtitle.

  1. The Sculptor’s Shop: Rumors of Abundant Life
  2. Hostages of the Mind: Rumors of Another Dream
  3. The Great Reversal: Rumors of Generosity
  4. The Faith You’ve Only Heard About: Rumors of Love
  5. Getting the Gospel in Order: Rumors of Grace
  6. Giving Up Your Rights: Rumors of Freedom
  7. The Radical Individual: Rumors of Commitment
  8. Loving Beneath the Surface: Rumors of Community
  9. The Greenroom: Rumors of Justice
  10. Our Burning Revolution: Rumors of Hope

At the back of the book is a section with questions based on each chapter, good questions to make the reader think and soul search. What could be a problem, though, is that the scriptural references they use throughout the book are mostly just noted in the back and not written out in full in the text of the book. This could prevent many from getting the full impact intended.

A comment that I was surprised to read was one written in chapter 5 about when the woman who was caught in adultery was brought to Jesus. The author said that Jesus “continued finger painting in the dust”, dismissing the seriousness of His meaningful action as a frivolous idle moment.

It was unclear to me as to whether the authors were always referring to church as being “church” – the organization under man’s leadership in works, or “Church” – the Body of Christ under the spiritual headship of God and from which relationship the works come.

There are some other things to watch out for, but Whitehead and Tyson made some excellent points and provided interesting – and surprising – stories to express their enthusiasm. It is a good read. On the whole Rumors of God is a book of encouragement to those who seek to be inspired and motivated in their faith.

You can find Rumors of God: Experience the Kind of Faith You’ve Only Heard About listed on my BUY THE BOOK! page.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

Book Review: Jesus, My Father, the CIA and Me: A memoir … of sorts – by Ian Morgan Cron

Book: Jesus, My Father, the CIA, And Me: A memoir… of sorts
Author: Ian Morgan Cron
Genre: Biography, Christian
Pages: 257, paperback
Price: $15.99 US
Released: May 2011
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
My Rating: Oh my! Captivating, even in the hard places.

I received a copy of Jesus, My Father, the CIA, And Me: A memoir… of sorts  from Book Sneeze in exchange for a review.

This book was hard to put down even when I absolutely had to. It was with caution that I started reading, not knowing what to expect after having read someone’s introduction – but by the time I was into chapter two there was no stopping.

Ian Cron writes with such seeming honesty and transparency that the reader can feel his grief, his triumphs, his struggles. I winced in places, feeling sorrow for his pain, and laughed out loud where he unexpectedly injected humour.

He writes about his tumultuous growing up years – as he remembers it – with his secretive alcoholic father and his proper, lovely mother who tried to protect him. He writes about his own fall into a life of addiction, patterned unwittingly after his father. And he writes about his deep love for God, his anger toward Jesus when all he wants is for his own father to love him, and the discoveries of the truth about both his father and Jesus. Truths that change his life.

What bothered me about this book was the author’s flippant attitude toward God, his apparent lack of reverence as if God owed him something. I’m not sure what Ian Morgan Cron was attempting to do, but knowing that he eventually became a priest caused me to feel alarm about the negative way he talked about the Bible and Jesus. My hope is that he was simply expressing the feelings he had early in his spiritual journey, which are probably the questions of many in their search for Truth.

Having said that, this is a story that pulled me in and held me there right to the end; such an enjoyable read that is different from any out there.

Do you like reading biographies?  This one is a definite change of pace.

You can find Jesus, My Father, the CIA, And Me: A memoir… of sorts listed on my BUY THE BOOK! page.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂

Book Review: Money and the Prosperous Soul by Stephen K. De Silva

Book: Money and the Prosperous Soul – Tipping the Scales of Favor and Blessing
Author: Stephen K. De Silva
Genre: Religious; Christian stewardship
Pages: 182, paperback
Price: $14.99 CND, $12.99 USD
Released: September 2010
Publisher: Chosen Books
My rating: An excellent book on stewardship and supernatural provision, well worth one’s time and study.

 

I received an advanced reading copy of this book from Library Thing in exchange for a review.

Had I realized what was in store for me on its pages, I would have read this book much sooner. Stephen De Silva writes the truths I have been needing to find, confirming some things I have understood but haven’t seen or known how to set in motion. He makes it very clear about prosperity and the lack of it – and why – especially dealing with the spirits of Poverty and Mammon.

Chapter titles are:
Purpose
Trouble With Money
Spirit of Poverty
Trust and Faith
Dreaming
Bound in Spirit
Spirit of Mammon
Dominion
The Art of Purpose

This is an excellent book, easy to read and understand. Stephen De Silva teaches biblical truth in a comfortable, sincere manner, explaining the spiritual problems that underlie financial ones. It is not the secret to immediate gratification, but lays out the steps to understanding the financial benefits explained in the Bible and how to get there.

For anyone struggling to handle their finances, or simply wanting to know how to live in the provision of God, this book shows the way. Money and the Prosperous Soul is also very suitable for group study.

This is a book I recommend if you want help in becoming financially successful.

You can find Money and the Prosperous Soul – Tipping the Scales of Favor and Blessing listed on my BUY THE BOOK! page.


Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂