Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Book Review: "The Wedding Game" by Amy Mayato

    Isn’t our time precious? So when I somehow manage to carve out seconds of my day to read a whole book in less than twenty-four hours, it is pretty safe to say that the book was awesome!  Very few stories have earned this special treatment, but The Wedding Game by Amy Mayato rose to the occasion.

            From the very first paragraph she had me giggling. This caught me off guard. I thought Ms. Mayato would have big shoes to fill if she wanted to continue to make me smile. However, the author never missed a beat; she even had me laughing out loud…more than once. That is an achievement in of itself!

Ellie, a sweet girl from Arkansas, was so desperate for funds she entered a reality show for a chance to win money. The catch, she’d have to be married to the world’s biggest jerk, even his good looks couldn’t sweeten the deal. Marriage was sacred, Ellie knew that. Nevertheless, she also knew if she didn’t win the show, there’d be bigger problems; ones that would affect more than just her own personal life. Cannon, the new husband, wasn’t too thrilled about being married to a hick from a state in the middle of nowhere either. His father had gotten him into this mess, but surely Cannon could fake a marriage long enough to earn his cut.

Sarcasm oozed off the pages. My eyes were in a race to reach the next chapter; I just had to know what was going to happen next. In a romantic comedy, one can typically foresee what is going to take place, but The Wedding Game kept me on my toes. There was never a dull moment or a time where I could be caught flipping forward to see how much more I had to read to get to the next part.

The characters were so full of personality and playful banter that it was easy to form an instant connection with them. The language was very clean and the sexual content was mild. If you enjoy humor, romance, or have ever been caught watching a reality TV show, this book is for you! Overall, I would give The Wedding Game by Amy Mayato a 4.8 out of 5 stars.

Ms. Mayato has earned a spot on my bookshelf,
and I'll be saving room for her next book too!
    You can find The Wedding Game on Amazon available in paperback and kindle versions.
 click to order
P.S. it would make a perfect stocking stuffer...
To learn more about Amy Mayato and what she's working on next visit
with love and prayers,

Monday, November 11, 2013

Free Food and Sacrifice
My husband meeting his daughter for the 1st time.
There’s this day in November when my husband rubs his hands together and displays a grin similar to a child’s in a candy store. You see my husband is a veteran and to him November 11th means free food.

 About two years ago my husband had to work on a Sunday. He was going to be working somewhat near home, so in order to get to spend time together the kids and I made plans to meet Daddy after church for a quick bite.

 My husband was easy to spot in the crowded restaurant. He was the only one wearing a military uniform. No longer in the active service, we had moved far away from our old army base homes where wearing ACU’s is the norm. Here our family received mostly awkward glances and a few smiles. Near the end of our meal, a man came by our table. Thanked my husband for his sacrifice, shook his hand and handed him a gift card which more than covered our family’s meal. And it wasn't even Veteran's Day.

 It was this kind gestured of free food that still brings tears to my eyes.

The man thanked my husband for serving but this veteran’s wife would like to thank that civilian for remembering the military life is never without sacrifice! Sure, at this time, a person has their own free will to join the military. Some may say they get what they deserve for choosing the service. However, when my husband signed the dotted line many years ago we never would have imagined he’d be deployed to Iraq three different times in five short years. Would anyone choose the military life if they knew what lay ahead?

 Soldiers are humans. They have families. They have hopes and dreams. They have fears. Believe it or not going to war is typically not on the list of must do’s for the day. So why do they do it? Well, ask one. Ask the veteran with the Korean War hat you see at the grocery store or ask the young soldier proudly in his uniform at a football game. Their answers may surprise you. It might just be so you can have the rights you live out every day. Because freedoms really don’t come free, freedom comes through sacrifice.

 Today is Veteran’s Day, a time set aside to say thank you and for some to receive free food.

 From my experience from being both an active and reserve military wife the best way you can show gratitude is through prayer.

 ~Pray that bitterness would not consume the soldier miles and miles away from those they love.

~Pray that loneliness, that hits the hardest at holidays, does not destroy.

~Pray for marriages. When a soldier is deployed communication becomes more difficult, there’s shifting of home responsibilities and personalities can change a lot in a year’s time. It's hard to be together when you are always a part.

~Pray for the military ‘brats’, those little ones that are left behind.

~Pray for the veteran. He or she may be filled with haunting memories or ever healing injuries we may never know about.

 To all the active, reservist, guard members and veterans Thank You!
 To all the wives, husbands and children, who stand beside a uniform, I send a smile and a hug.
To my husband, my brother, my cousin, cousin-in-law and my grandpas, you are truly special.
 I hope you enjoy your free food today and may it be worth all your sacrifices!
 Because of the service of others I can still shout out loud:
 that Jesus scarified Himself so that we, deserving of nothing,
 can choose to believe and have life in Him!
My eternal life was gained by His sacrifice.
Thanks today and always.
with love and prayers,

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Honey, I've got some Bad News.

One afternoon a few weeks ago my husband arrived home from work.

“How was your day?”

“Well, I have some bad news…”

My heart skipped, and my mind began to race through a long imaginary list of oh no’s and what if’s. “Oh, alright…let’s hear it then.”

“You know all those winter clothes we just bought me over the weekend?”

My eyebrows lowered as I tried to process his words, “Yeah?”

“Apparently work doesn’t classify those as cold weather clothing, and we won’t be getting reimbursed for our purchases.”

I stared at him.

“Sorry,” he grumbled out.”

“Is that all?”

“Uh, yeah,” my husband observed me as if I had two heads. At the current moment, I did not.

“Honey, I think we might need to reevaluate your opinion of bad news.”

He produced a laugh, “Why’s that?”

“When I hear you say the words, ‘I have bad news’ my mind races to those three times you told me of your deployment orders. Now that was bad news! Not getting refunded for clothes is a simple… irritation.”

He pulled me in and gave me a hug and chuckled, “Maybe.”

 November is often a time that is set aside to pray for the persecuted church.  Sunday my church showed a short video about a group of Christians in Nigeria.  The video tried its best to express our fellow brothers’ and sisters’ pain and sorrow they receive simply because they were at their church worshipping Jesus.  Persecution! The bible tells us in Matthew 10:22 that we will be hated by this world because of Jesus.  We are targets!  We can each share stories of discrimination because of our belief in Christ.  But as I sat there in my church “safe” scars from my own persecutions seemed more and more like buying winters clothes—a simple irritation. 
All too often I have overlooked those that are still being martyred for Him.  I am not belittling my own or your oppression.  However, I think we might need to reevaluate our struggles.  I find comfort in 2 Corinthians 4:8-9 which says “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” NIV

This week I’m going to make a point to remember that my world doesn’t revolve around me, my family or my neighbors. Instead I will pray for those that daily receive real bad news about their family members and church as they are targeted because of their faith.
 The Lord is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear?
The Lord is my stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked advance against me to devour me,
it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall.
Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me,
even then I will be confident.
Psalms 27:1-3 NIV
with love and prayers
The winner of Woman Living Well book by Courtney Joseph is B.Gregory!
Thanks for all who entered the contest.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Book Review: Samantha Shannon's The Bone Season

          Samantha Shannon, author of The Bone Season, has been rumored to be the next J.K. Rowling. Having never read a Harry Potter book to date, I can’t provide any guidance on those reports. (Please no haters…it is on my to-read list…I did watch all the movies if that earns me any points back) I can tell you it did remind me of a darker Eragon…without the dragons of course.
          Gaining major hype on this young author’s book, here are some things to keep in mind. 1st it is important to find the glossary provided at the back of the book before you start reading. And it is highly suggested for you to find this information prior to reaching the last three chapters of the book. It will save you precious brain cells! Trust me.
          The 2nd valuable info: the map and charts at the beginning of the book will NOT be useful until you get a good portion into the story. So no matter how many times you flip from your reading to these awesome extras, they will not be very helpful until later.
          Point #3: The front informational blurb on the inside cover is ever so slightly…misleading. No, it does not lie, but has left out a key ‘player’. This book has some major things with spirits going on. And I did not get that from reading the blurb.
         The start of the book was a tad slow and a bit of an ‘informational dump’ but once I got to the forth chapter she hooked me. (Even with all those spirits…not a big fan of those kind of stories.) My favorite part of the book is the “golden strand”. I think she gave a classic foreshadowing theme a nice twist. Two thumbs! The middle does drag on for a couple chapters as the main character struggles to get what the reader has already figured out by this point.
        But I will give Ms. Shannon praise for leaving enough loops and intertwining characters for me to see this easily being created into a seven book series. She has also satisfied this reader with a complete ending while leaving me wanting to see what happens next.
        Honestly, if I would have known about all the spirits and such, I would not have started this series. And I will not be recommending this to too many CF readers. However…with that being said, I will be reading the next book in this series! I enjoyed the flow of her words, even though she did have an occasional curse word. (Yes, I prefer every book I read NOT to have such words) The sexual content is mild and the fighting content is slightly above mild. I didn’t find myself having to reread any of her sentences to see what in the world she might be saying, a major plus! Except a few times, for example if she was trying to tell me a shoe was red, she would go a little over board in trying to tell me something so simple.
        Overall I give The Bone Season: 4 out of 5 stars. And would recommend it to most readers ages 15 and up.
       This was my first fiction book review. I'd love to hear what you think...leave me a comment...please!
With love and prayers,
Megan Besing