Book Review: A Note Yet Unsung By Tamera Alexander



A master violinist trained in Vienna, Rebekah Carrington manages to wheedle her way into an audition with the maestro at the newly formed Nashville Philharmonic. But women are “far too fragile and frail” for the rigors of an orchestra, and Rebekah’s hopes are swiftly dashed because the conductor–determined to leave his mark on the world of classical music–bows to public opinion. To make matters worse, Adelicia Acklen Cheatham, mistress of Belmont Mansion and Rebekah’s new employer, agrees with him.

Nationally acclaimed conductor Nathaniel Tate Whitcomb is Nashville’s new orchestra leader. And despite a reluctant muse–and a strange buzzing and recurring pain in his head–he must finish composing his symphony before the grand opening of the city’s new opera hall. But far more pressing, he must finish it for the one who first inspired his love of music–his father, who is dying. As Tate’s ailment worsens, he believes Rebekah can help him finish his symphony. But how do you win back a woman’s trust when you’ve robbed her of her dream?

As music moves us to tears yet makes our hearts soar, A Note Yet Unsung captures the splendor of classical music at a time when women’s hard-won strides in cultural issues changed not only world history–but the hearts of men.

General Thoughts:

If you have been following my book reviews for some time then you may know that Tamera Alexander is my favorite author. She is effective in grasping the emotional strings of a reader and creating characters with so much depth that you feel like you’ve known them longer than you really have. And with this 3rd book in the series, she still does not disappoint. Immediately being introduced to the main character Rebekah, I connected with her instantly. I think that connection came from her determination to pursue her passion in music, especially during a time when the odds were stacked against her, simply by being a woman. With the author drawing on Rebekah’s upbringing and musical influences, including battling a broken relationship with her mother, I felt her pain and even fear. The interaction between her and Tate was believable and brought sincere meaning when things came full circle in the end.

This was definitely a character driven story. Though there were a series of subtle plots throughout the story, things that needed to be resolved and manifest, the focus was truly on Rebekah’s and Tate’s growth and development as individuals. For Rebekah, it was about being fearless and determined to make her musical dreams come to light. It was about learning to forgive and give people a chance, as she did with Tate and his family. For Tate, it was about letting go and putting someone else’s dream ahead of his own. It was about developing a humble spirit. Together, both Tate and Rebekah learned that anything is possible, even pursuing a dream that the times said didn’t exist for all.

There were no obvious negatives. With the author’s writing style, I was immediately immersed into Rebekah’s world and later on, Tate’s and Rebekah’s world together. Their interactions brought life to the story and the challenges and lessons they learned kept me turning the pages to the very end.


I would recommend this story to anyone who enjoys historical fiction with a bit of romance. And especially to those who are looking for character driven stories that focus on growth with relatable and encouraging messages.


5 out of 5 stars. This story was an easy read and had many powerful areas. The challenges the main characters faced and the series of subtle plots added enough suspense to keep the story moving.

***This book was given to me by Bethany House for an honest review.***

Book Review: The Mark Of The King By Jocelyn Green



Life in This New World Requires More Strength Than She Ever Imagined

After the death of her client, midwife Julianne Chevalier is imprisoned and branded, marking her as a criminal beyond redemption. Hoping to reunite with her brother, a soldier, she trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling French colony of Louisiana. The price of her transport, however, is a forced marriage to a fellow convict.

New Orleans is nothing like Julianne expects. The settlement is steeped in mud and mosquitoes, and there is no news of her brother, Benjamin. When tragedy strikes, she turns to military officer Marc-Paul Girard for help, but does he know more about her brother than he will admit?

With her dreams shattered, Julianne must find her way in this dangerous land, where only grace–and love–can overcome the stigma of the king’s mark upon her shoulder.

 General Thoughts:

 I must say when I first opened this book, I thought it would be similar to a lot of historical fiction books I’ve read as of late. I thought it would be somewhat bland and predictable in the general sense, pretty much about a woman trying to find redemption a new land with obstacles every where she turns.

But I was wrong and unexpectedly surprised.

I didn’t think this story would tug on my heartstrings as it did. I didn’t think this story would bring about frightening suspense and mystery.

It didn’t take long for me to feel for the main character Julianne. Though seen as a sort of villain in the world she lives in, in my mind she was the nothing of the sort. In fact, she is like a hero for those who read this book, in that, her struggles to overcome the shame for what she did in her past affected her throughout the story. Many times, she was faced with opportunities to forgive those who offended her, and though she was tempted to not offer them forgiveness, she was reminded of her own shame and how if she could receive redemption, surely those who offended her could too.

What I loved most about this story was it was too interesting and suspenseful to put down. The author did a good job in weaving a sort of eerie mystery that made me frightened for the main characters in the story. What I liked especially was how the author ended many of the chapters on a cliff hanger, making me, the reader, tempted to continue reading from chapter to chapter.

Another thing that the author did well was paint a sincere realistic story. Not knowing much about the formation of Louisiana in the 1700s, it was nice to gain a clearer understanding about the life and social issues that took place during that time. Reading about the unfolding of Julianne’s life made me feel like I was a part of her life. Julianne’s losses were my losses and Julianne’s shame was my shame. Julianne’s ultimate struggle to find and accept redemption for herself in a world that was reluctant to give it, was what made this story’s message powerful. I’m sure many of us who struggle to let go our past shame and failures will find comfort in this.


 I would recommend this story to anyone who’s struggling to find redemption for themselves or even struggling to forgive others. I especially recommend this story to those who like historical fiction, mystery, and suspense.


5 stars out of 5. I tried to think of a negative to this book, but I couldn’t find one. It was an easy, entertaining, and moving read.

 ***This book was given to me by Bethany House for an honest review.***

Book Review: Shadow Of The Storm By Connilyn Cossette



In the darkness of the storm’s shadow, only truth can light her way.

Having escaped Egypt with the other Hebrews during the Exodus, Shira is now living in freedom at the foot of Mount Sinai. When the people rebel by worshipping a golden idol, the ensuing chaos gives Shira an unexpected opportunity to assist a midwife. When the experience awakens a new desire in her, she defies her mother’s wish for her to continue in the family weaving trade and pursues her heart’s calling as an apprentice midwife.

But when a delivery goes horribly wrong, Shira finds herself in an impossible situation and bound to a man who betrayed her. As contention between the Hebrew tribes and the foreigners fans the flames of another dangerous rebellion, Shira comes face to face with the long-hidden pain of her past. Can she let go of all that has defined her to embrace who she truly is and believe in a hopeful future?

General Thoughts:

This story was something new and different from all the other stories I’ve read in the past. If you are familiar with the Bible, this story takes place after the Exodus and really goes deep in illustrating and explaining the social issues that existed among the Hebrews during their journey to the Promised Land. The story focuses on Shira and the struggles she faced especially within herself to see and believe in her worth. Having faced a tragic past that left her barren, she couldn’t see her value, especially to others. Even when she realized her love of being a midwife, she struggled with believing if she was good enough to be one.

I love how the author used Shira’s character to show how God can turn someone’s life around, especially into something far beyond what one would expect to be possible. Although I found Shira’s story the most compelling, there were other characters like Dvorah and Ayal, who had personal inner battles as well. I love how for Shira, she couldn’t see what good would come out of her life, but how God surprised her with what I believe was nothing but amazing.

For me, this is the most powerful story I read if not ever, then in a long long time. I think everyone will find a bit of Shira in them, maybe doubting their worth and strength, their ability to offer anything meaningful in the world. But as Shira came to find, that’s not true. After reading this story, I too, began to believe in myself more.

I truly have no obvious negatives about this story. Although the story is historical, it is very much a fictional story, focused on the personal challenges Shira faced with herself and those around her. I think this story is one that could appeal to even those who may not be interested in historical stories.


I would definitely recommend this story to really anyone. Simply because of issues like self worth, overcoming negative pasts, and finding strength and confidence. I believe these issues are quite universal and will be relevant to so many.


5 out of 5 stars. I didn’t find this story dragging, boring, or difficult to read in anyway. Though I didn’t touch on this earlier, this story was also suspenseful, as there were a bit of frightening challenges that occurred and for me, I could not predict how they would turn out and how characters, like Shira, would overcome them.

***This book was given to me by Bethany House for an honest review.***

Shadow Of The Storm: An Excerpt


Hi friends,

I’ve come to the end of this book and I have to say that it is really one that has been the most meaningful to me out of all the books I’ve read recently, if not ever. For those of you who are looking for your next book to read, specifically one that offers encouragement as well as intrigue, I want to share a link to where you can read a substantial except of this book. I will also be posting a book review on Monday, so stay tune 🙂

Shadow Of The Storm Excerpt

Book Review: Courageous By Dina L. Sleiman



Will They Trust God’s Call Even When It Leads to the Most Unexpected Places?

Inspired by the vision of the young Lady Sapphira, Rosalind of Ipsworth joins a group of men, women, and children as a defender of the cross, seeking to free captives from prisons near Tripoli. She’ll gladly give herself to the cause, as she’s haunted by a tragic mistake and feels she no longer deserves such joys as marriage and family might bring.

Sir Randel Penigree was reared to serve in the church but has always dreamt of protecting the innocent as a Templar knight. Joining a crusade to escape humiliation at home, he finds himself drawn to Rosalind as they partner to train and protect a group of adolescents. When faced with political intrigue and an unknown enemy bent on their destruction, they are forced to reconsider their priorities and the very nature of the God they serve.

General Thoughts:

I found this to be simply an inspiring story that many might find meaningful to them in some way. What I liked about this story the most was the internal struggle that both main characters, Rosalind and Randel, dealt with throughout the story. Living with deep regrets of what they’ve done in the past, they found it hard to move on and see themselves worthy of forgiveness. Because of that, they risked losing out in the blessings God had intended to manifest in their lives.

The author was good at creating mystery in this book, although I would consider this book more of a historical adventure than a mystery. She never directly stated what is was that Rosalind and Randel did to feel the way they did about themselves until the end, although as you read the book is becomes obvious. To add to that, I really enjoyed wondering who the antagonist to Randel was. As I came to the end of the book I was wrong on who the antagonist was and a little surprised at who it turn out to be.

As mentioned before, this story is a historical story. It takes place during the 1200s when the crusades took place. Besides Rosalind and Randel, there were a few more characters that were prominent in the story, one being a child named Sapphira. I loved how she interpreted God’s love to others within herself and how she responded to God’s call. All in all, I finished reading this story with the message that forgiveness is always available with God no matter how bad the offense, it is really up to the person to receive that forgiveness.


This book is ideal to those who like historical adventures. More so, to those who struggle with forgiveness, especially of themselves and want to understand or learn more about God’s forgiveness and love for them.


4 out of 5 stars. This was simply a good story with a powerful message that will appeal to many, especially to those who love historical adventures.

***This book was given to me by Bethany House for an honest review. ***

Book Review: From This Moment By Elizabeth Camden



Stella West’s artistic talent made her the toast of London, but when her beloved sister dies under mysterious circumstances she abandons everything and heads for Boston. With single-minded determination she fights to pierce the ring of secrecy surrounding her sister’s death. Upon meeting Romulus White, a publisher with connections into every important power circle in the city, she quickly realizes he could be a valuable ally in navigating Boston society.

Romulus has been pursuing Stella for years to create art for his magazine. Her luminous illustrations are the missing piece he needs to propel his magazine to the forefront of the industry, and he will stop at nothing to get her on board.

Sparks fly the instant they join forces, but Romulus is unsettled by the unwelcome attraction he feels toward Stella, fearing she might be the one woman who could disrupt his hard-won independence. He may have finally met his match in Stella, but is helping her solve the mystery of her sister’s death worth the risk to his publishing empire?

General Thoughts:

One thing I will say immediately is this story definitely exceeded my expectations. At first, I thought it would be a somewhat predictable love story, but actually, it was anything but predictable in terms of how Stella’s and Romulus’s relationship would grow. One thing I liked especially about this story was the realism it had. Finding love was not the goal for both Stella and Romulus since there were greater things on their mind to pursue, but it kind of fell unexpectedly into their laps. Both main characters were easy to connect with and like and their personalities melded perfectly together although they were unique in their own way.

Another element that made this story an easy and quick read for me was it was a mystery story. The greatest mystery was figuring out what happened to Stella’s dead sister and it was not predictable and quite surprising to find out what was revealed in the end.

The one thing that I was able to take away from the story was the lessons both Stella and Romulus learned, especially Stella. Coming from an idealistic background and experiencing success early on in life, her sister’s death really altered her view on God and life in general. But later on, through the trials she faced, Stella was able to discover the strength that existed within her, and found a new appreciation for God and the people in her life. In fact, that was the overall message—through tragedy, restoration and even love could be found.


Yes, I would recommend this to those who love timeless mysteries and stories with witty characters. I believe the overall message of restoration through tragedy will appeal to many.


4 out of 5 stars. The characters were easy to connect with and understand. I also loved the overall message and the mystery that was a part of it.

***This book was given to me by Bethany House for an honest review.***

New Poetry Ebook!


For those of you who are interested in purchasing my poetry book but prefer it as a ebook, I’m excited to say that I now have an ebook version available at!

More good news is the ebook is $2.99—much cheaper than the other versions.

The ebook features:

40 lyrical poems
Commentary on each poem at the beginning of each section
8 black and white photos
Interactive table of contents

Below is the link to view and purchase the book. For more information and to see the other versions available, check out the Books tab on this blog.

The Beginning… (Ebook Version)

Book Review: Until The Dawn By Elizabeth Camden



Fascinated by Dierenpark, an abandoned mansion high atop a windswept cliff in the Hudson River Valley, Sophie van Riijn sees no harm in setting up a rooftop weather station for her work with the newly established Weather Bureau. While the villagers are suspicious of the mysterious estate and its tragic history, Sophie has come to see it as her own enchanted piece of paradise.

The first Vandermark to return to the area in sixty years, Quentin intends to put an end to the shadowy rumors about the property that has brought nothing but trouble upon his family. Ready to tear down the mansion, he is furious to discover Sophie trespassing on his land.

Instantly at odds, Quentin and Sophie yet find common ground when she is the only one who can reach his troubled son. There’s a light within Sophie that Quentin has never known, and a small spark of the hope that left him years ago begins to grow. But when the secrets of Dierenpark can no longer be kept in the past, will tragedy triumph or can their tenuous hope prevail?

General Thoughts:

I would compare this story to a finely detailed woven rug, or an intricately hand painted vase. Overall, I felt this story was exceptionally written and not left without any important or meaningful information. The story began with a bit of mystery and suspense, which led me to feel like I was going to embark on a mystery. Although that was true to a certain extent, the story later took on a different feeling that made me enjoy reading it even more.

I loved getting to know one of the main characters, Sophie. I guess, in a way, I related to her personality so that is probably why I ended up liking her so much. It was nice to see how her personality transcended that of the Vandermarks, especially Quentin and even helped transform his life in the end.

One thing I can say about this story is it is definitely not predictable, which I thought it would be. I thought quite a few things would come to pass, or happen, in the story for both Sophie and Quentin, which never did, and I think this aspect alone made for an exciting read which I can honestly say I wish never came to an end.

As far as any negative thoughts, I don’t have any. The beginning of the story was met with mystery, which made it instantly difficult to put down. As the story progressed and as I began to know the characters, I was hooked.


I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys stories that focus on character transformations. I think many people, if not all, will personally relate to the characters Sophie and Quentin in some way. Also, seeing Quentin’s and Sophie’s transformation—redemption, will be inspiring to those of us who may be struggling to see that possibility in our own lives.


5 out of 5 stars. I couldn’t find any negatives to this book. The characters are inspiring and the message is hopeful. Once I started reading the story, it was difficult to stop J

***This book was given to me by Bethany House for an honest review.***

Book Review: Love Everlasting By Tracie Peterson

Book Review: Love Everlasting By Tracie Peterson


Growing up in a Seattle bridal finishing school never prepared Abrianna Cunningham to become one of the brides, but now Wade Ackerman, who has always been the reliable boy next door, is indicating he wants to be more than friends. And even the people closest to Abrianna believe Wade is the man she should marry. So why is she having such a hard time choosing between Wade Ackerman and Priam Welby?

Watching Welby’s relentless pursuit of Abrianna is making Wade’s blood boil. Welby can offer her wealth and security, but what about character and integrity? Surely Abrianna can see past Welby’s smooth tongue and fine clothes. Can’t she?

Caught between the devil and the boy next door, either choice she makes will change Abrianna’s life forever.

General Thoughts:

When I found out that there was a new book from Tracie Peterson about Abrianna, I knew I had to read it! This book is not necessarily a sequel to the book, Refining Fire, where Abrianna was introduced, it is more like a continuation. In Refining Fire, Abrianna played more of a supporting role to the main character, Militine. In Love Everlasting, Abrianna is now the main character and her story continues from where it left off in Refining Fire.

Abrianna definitely met my expectations in this story from her personality to all the excitement that usually followed her. To be honest, if you haven’t read Refining Fire, I urge you to do so before reading Love Everlasting to fully understand her backstory and the events that occur in this story. In short, Abrianna and Wade’s relationship becomes more defined and serious, but with her case between Priam not being completely settled, Priam seeks to destroy not only Abrianna and Wade’s relationship, but also the lives of everyone close to her. The challenges that Priam creates for Abrianna forces her to consider her commitment to Wade and give God complete control for once, since she is always seeking to be in control.

This story is interesting and full of sentimental moments but also some thrills from beginning to end. Because of the constant drama, I found it to be an easy read. What I also liked about this story was how the characters maintained their authenticity. The Abrianna in Refining Fire was the same Abrianna in Love Everlasting.


I would surely recommend this story to anyone who’s interested in stories that have strong relatable characters, natural humor, and lots of drama.


4.5 out of 5 stars. Overall the story was good and easy to read, and the characters were relatable and compelling.

***This book was given to me by Bethany House for an honest review.***

Poetry Photo Book!


Earlier this May, I announced that I would be releasing a poetry photo book. I envisioned great things for this book and I can honestly say that I’m happy with the results. However this is not the first time I put together and release books for sale—when I started blogging in 2012 I released 2 poetry books on Amazon, which have long since been removed. But through that undertaking and even the current one, I learned that creating a book is just a third of the work. Getting it on sale pages and marketing is the rest, which seems to be the most challenging and the least fun.

Initially, I wanted to sell my book on Apple iBooks and Amazon. However, through Blurb, I can only sell a book on one site but not the others. If I want to do so, I have to create another version for each of the other sites. If I want to sell them as an e-book, I also have to convert them and pay for that conversion. To me, it just seems like a lot of work and extra costs for something I have yet to see how it will sell. I mainly want to share my book with those who are interested above anything else.

I wanted to sell e-book versions on Amazon and Apple ibooks, and not a physical copy (Amazon), since when I looked at the costs, the book became very expensive to sell on Amazon, with the costs being past $50.00 (this is without me getting any profit).

So, I have decided to sell the book on alone. At Blurb, you can see both versions (coffee table book and trade book) and preview the first 15 pages. Though there is no e-book version at the moment (I will work on that), there is a pdf version available.

On my new website, I will be posting 10 of the 40 poems featured in the book. This is to give readers an idea of the theme and content of the book, but also to allow those who wish to not or can’t purchase the book to see what I have put together.

With this all said, I invite you to check out the books on and if you are someone or know someone who enjoys poetry and is a collector of books, this just might be the perfect gift or something to have.

Thank you everyone for your feedback regarding this endeavor and support 🙂


My poetry book is now on this website. Click here for more information.

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