Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Favorite Authors - James Scott Bell Writes Complex Thrillers

I have been a long-time fan of James Scott Bell. He writes books that are well thought out. They keep me guessing but all make sense in the end. The main characters draw you in immediately and get you feeling for them, and I love all of the minor characters that he throws into the books, and how the settings seem so real. I can still look back on a book that I read of his years ago and remember different scenes from it and what the characters did and said. His books are memorable, and he is an author who inspires me.

If you love thrillers, then you will appreciate James Scott Bell's writing. He has written many great suspense/legal thriller novels. Each of the novels that I've read by him have held my interest and kept me turning page after page without wanting to put the book down. He has long been one of my favorite authors, and I know that you will love his writing, too, if you read one of his books.

Try Dying was the first book I read by him. It's about a lawyer who's fiancee is murdered. And, despite the dark theme, it is humorous, too. It's a well written novel, and I loved everything about it and the sequels that followed.

The Whole Truth was another book that I read by him and thoroughly enjoyed. It is about a man who's brother was kidnapped when he was young. It tells an interesting story, and I have read it more than once. Breach of Promise is another book that kept me turning the pages, and it is about a father trying to keep custody of his young daughter.

All of James Scott Bell's books are worth a read. He really knows what he is doing, and he has even written books on how to become a better writer. He is an inspiration to me as a writer, and I look forward to rereading a few of his novels soon.

Start with Try Dying, like I did, and you will get hooked!

Thanks, James Scott Bell, for writing great books!

Stay tuned for more Favorite Author blogs coming up soon!

By Bethany Acker, Co-Author of No Longer Broken

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Favorite Authors - Can't Get Enough of Jenny B. Jones

Jenny B. Jones' books have been a favorite of mine (and Emily's) for many years now. I love the humor that she puts into each one of her books. I love how connected I feel with the characters, and how real their struggles are - and how they always face each struggle head on and become a better person because of them.

Jenny B. Jones is a talented author, and she is an inspiration to me. I have loved her work since the Katie Parker Production series, and one of her most recent releases, I'll Be Yours, is one of my favorite books of hers yet. The characters in it are so well thought out, with a story that is equally good, and I couldn't put it down.

I'll Be Yours is a novel about Harper O'Malley, a smart teen, who agrees to tutor the school's football star and takes dating advice from him. Her home life is complicated, and she grows a lot throughout the course of the book.

Jenny B. Jones' books make me laugh. They make me cry. The leave me wanting to be a better writer.

If you love fiction, then you need to check out Jenny B. Jones' work. Her books are some of the best out there. And, even if you are older, you are still going to love her teen books. I do. The stories she writes are so good that adults and teens alike can relate.

I have enjoyed Jenny B. Jones' books for years. She has a great sense of humor and put so much heart into the books, as well, and I know that you will really love her writing, too.

Hers are books that I can read for hours straight. Once I get into one of them I don't want to put it down. I look forward to rereading I'll Be Yours, as I have reread some of her previous books.

If you want to read a book that will make you laugh out loud, and yet that will tug on your heartstrings at the same time, then you need to check out Jenny B. Jones' books.

Start with I'll Be Yours and then work your way through the Katie Parker Production series and The Charmed Life series. Those are my favorites of hers, but all of her books are great!

Thank you, Jenny B. Jones, for putting such great writing out there for all of us to enjoy!

Stay tuned for more Favorite Author blogs coming up soon!

By Bethany Acker, Co-Author of No Longer Broken

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Great Is Thy Faithfulness

God is faithful. Always.

Even during scary times like the flooding going on in Houston, God is faithful.

Even when it feels like there is no hope, he gives hope.

Even during war. Even with the fear of evil, he can be trusted.

God is faithful. He is never going to leave or forsake us.

All that we need he has provided. He is not going to let us down.

No matter what we need, we only have to ask him and to trust him. He won't always do things in the way that we expect, but he will always be faithful to take care of us.

There are many things in life that will get us down and scare us. There are times when we will be so worried about the future that we can't enjoy the moment. But God is going to take care of us, and that is what we need to remember always.

You might be going through a hard time, but God has not given up on you. He loves you, and he is faithful to help you. In all seasons, through all of your pain.

Never fear, for God is with you. He is not going to leave you, but he will provide all that you need, always.

I hope you are encouraged today by God's faithfulness!

By Bethany Acker, Co-Author of No Longer Broken

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Favorite Author - Susan May Warren is one of the Best

Susan May Warren is an author who is a favorite of both mine and Emily's. Her books are full of drama, love, and heart. She pours herself into her works, and the details in her books are amazing.

Susan May Warren is one of those authors who I wish I could constantly be reading. Like, if every book I read was written by her, I wouldn't mind. She's that good.

She has books that are centered around families and the drama that comes along with them, like The Christiansen Family Series, and I really enjoy her style of writing. I love the stories that she tells and how she works everything together neatly into each book.

She creates settings that you can imagine in your mind, such as the charming small Minnesota town of Deep Haven, and she really captures the heart of the reader in each of her books.

I love getting deeply involved in the story I am reading, and with Susan May Warren's writing, it is easy to do that.

I have enjoyed Susan May Warren's books for many years now, and as mentioned above, The Christiansen Family series is one of my favorites. I felt connected to the characters in each of the books, and it was fun getting to know the whole family and see all of them fall in love.

I recently read her book Wild Montana Skies and it was beautifully written, too. I like that she writes about families and their struggles, as well as love stories. She digs deep and makes the characters seem real. The Shadow of Your Smile is one of my favorites of hers. I enjoy all of her books, and she is an inspiration to me as an author.

All of her books keep me turning the pages because they are so packed with action. There is never a dull moment in them, and I look forward to reading many more books by her in the future.

Never read a book by Susan May Warren? Start with the Christiansen Family series, then go with the Nobel Legacy series or dive into the Montana Rescue series. I know you're going to love her books!

Stay tuned for more Favorite Author blogs coming up soon!

By Bethany Acker, Co-Author of No Longer Broken

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Family in the Bible - Paul and His Nephew

I never really thought about it until recently, but what was Paul's nephew's opinion of him? We hear of the nephew when he warns Paul about the plot that some had to kill him in Acts 23.

And when Paul's sister's son heard of their lying in wait, he went and entered into the castle, and told Paul.
Acts 23:16

Did his nephew simply do it out of family loyalty? Or did he agree with Paul in his beliefs? I always assumed he was a Christ follower, too, but was he?

And, if he was, did he become a Christian after Paul's conversion? Did he support him when he was still Saul and was persecuting Christians?

It's always interesting to study Bible stories more in depth. To think about the people and what they were actually thinking, feeling, and going through.

I find families in the Bible especially interesting, and I really wonder what the relationship between uncle and nephew was.

As a aunt myself, my nieces and nephews mean the world to me. I wonder if Paul felt the same way about his nephew. Did he love him since he was a child? Did he spoil him? Or was he distant until the time he saw the light on the road to Damascus, and then did he start being kind to his nephew? Or, maybe his nephew didn't actually know him, but just knew of him.

We don't know a lot about what went on and the relationship between them, but it is interesting to think about, none the less. Paul's nephew cared enough about him to warn him when people were out to kill him, and I think that says a lot.

By Bethany Acker, Co-Author of No Longer Broken

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

But Where Is Our Praise?

Something goes wrong, and we ask God to fix it. We ask him to fix us when we are broken inside. We lean on him during the storm, during our struggles. And while all of this is good, there is one question that I have.

When we are saved from our struggles, where is our praise?

God helps us out in so many ways. Every day he is looking out for us, even when we do not see him at work. He is there. He blesses us with our homes, our families, our jobs. God takes care of us in giving us health. In giving us love.

So, where is our praise?

Sure, we might sing songs of praise on Sunday mornings, but do we really mean it? And even if we do, where is the praise that we should be giving God every day of the week, not just in church?

We are so quick to ask God for help.

We are so in need of what he can give us all of the time.

But where is our praise?

I know that I need to learn to thank God more often. I need to praise him every day for all of the beautiful things that he has given me. For all of the answered prayers. For all of the ways he has made me learn and grow.

God is great, and his mercies are endless. His love is unfathomable. His grace extends to all.

"Praise the Lord, all you nations; extol him, all you peoples. For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever. Praise the Lord."
Psalm 117

By Bethany Acker, Co-Author of No Longer Broken

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

7 Must Read Christian Fiction Novels (not just the typical love stories)

If you are into reading books that are focused on more than just a love story between the two main characters, then you will love all seven of the books listed below.

These books have heart. They have a story beyond what is typically told in a book. And I love them all.

The Dandelion Field by Kathryn Springer
This story is one of a mother who has been constantly on the move since her daughter's birth. But she's now settled in a small town and finally feeling good about being there. Her teenage daughter's pregnancy and the rumors that are sure to come with it make her want to leave again... but will she stay? Loved this book on a topic rarely written about. I found it interesting and heart warming.

The Shadow of Your Smile by Susan May Warren
This book focuses on a middle age couple facing divorce. But, just before they are to go through with the divorce, the woman is in an accident that erases parts of her memory. It's an interesting, emotional, and well thought out read, and I loved all of the family drama in the story.

From Bad to Worse by Todd and Jedd Hafer
This is not your typical book in any way. It focuses on a hurting young man and a road trip that he takes home from college with his high school crush. The books gets deep, and it tugged on my emotions as I read it. It was an inspiration to me, and I definitely recommend that you read it if you are looking for something different.

Heart Echos by Sally John
A woman with a hard past. A daughter who never met her father. Secrets between family members... two sisters who need each other's support... This book is one that held my interest from the first page to the last. It was all about a dysfunctional family, and I loved it.

Like Moonlight at Low Tide by Nicole Quigley
This book is highly emotional. I cried when I read it. It's a young adult book, but it tells a compelling story, and you will want to read it, no matter what age you are. It deals with heavy topics, such as suicide, and it is crafted beautifully.

In Between by Jenny B. Jones
I have read this book through a few times because it is just that good. I laughed and cried as I read the story of a teenage foster child and her struggles to fit in with a new, Christian family.

A House Divided by Robert Whitlow
I love a book that tackles hard topics and that is different than most, and this one definitely fits the bill. It centers around an alcoholic attorney, who is failing at his firm and with his two adult children. This book is full of drama and is well written. It is interesting, real, and a must read.

So, go ahead and check these books out! You will laugh, cry, and have a great time as you read each one of them.

By Bethany Acker, Co-Author of No Longer Broken