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The Walnut Creek Wish
by Wanda E. Brunstetter
Rhonda and Jeff Davis are a financially successful couple living in a townhouse in Canton, Ohio, where she manages a hotel and he has his own restaurant. They love each other, but they have a fairly testy relationship often exchanging hurtful barbs. Neither wants anything to do with God because each had deep-felt prayers that had not been answered the way that they wanted them to be. Rhonda’s dad had affairs and eventually left his family behind. Jeff’s mom passed away when he was a teenager.
Rhonda and Jeff’s lives intersect with those of Orley and Lois who own an Amish antique store in rural Walnut Creek, Ohio, when the younger couple try to rejuvenate their marriage by purchasing a beautiful house and commuting to their jobs. Orley and Lois take every opportunity to encourage Rhonda and Jeff to develop a personal relationship with Jesus. A lot has to happen in the young couple’s lives before their hearts are opened to their need for God.
The Walnut Creek Wish is a quick and easy read, but it deals with some real issues—satisfaction, childlessness, abandonment, and forgiveness. The writing, especially the dialogue, in the first part of the book is somewhat stilted. Then the author breaks into a pace that is much more comfortable after the character backgrounds have been established and the action in the plot develops. It is a clean read with strong Christian themes involving both Amish and Englisch characters with interesting comparisons and contrasts of their lifestyles and their problems and how they react to them.
I would like to extend my thanks to netgalley.com and to Barbour Publishing for giving me the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Category: Christian, Romance, Women’s Fiction
Notes: 1. #1 in the Creektown Discoveries series. I will be reading the next book in the series. I am interested to see if there is an overlap or continuation of characters and/or of setting and to see if the sudden improvement in style and pace in this book holds up in the next book.
2. Recipes for a cucumber dip and bacon cheese muffins are included.
3. There are questions for individual thought or book club discussions.
Publication: August 1, 2021—Barbour Publishing
She and Jeff had been married twelve years, and all they had to show for it was a modern townhouse, an expensive sports car, a luxury SUV, and a chasm of disinterest between them.
“I don’t know all the reasons, but I’m sure the Lord directed that young man to our store for a purpose beyond looking at antiques.”
“Any time’s the right time to share God’s love and the redemption He offers because of His Son. Pray for the right words to say, and speak them from the heart with love.”
The Subject of Malice
by Cynthia Kuhn
An academic like Lila Maclean is highly suitable to detective work; many of the same skills are required to interview witnesses, deduce events from clues, and analyze situations as she employs in her profession. It doesn’t hurt that Lila has a propensity for finding dead bodies thus putting her on the scene where all the evidence is.
In The Subject of Malice by Cynthia Kuhn, the police chief actually recognizes the valuable contributions Lila has made in the past and gives Detective Lex, her boyfriend, the nod to include Lila as a consultant. As an English professor, Lila’s focus on the genres of gothic and horror brings her to a convention as an organizer, presenter, and participant. The ugly side of the academic world is on full display as professors compete for publication which in turn helps them achieve tenure. In fact, the atmosphere turns nasty and downright deadly. As the convention winds down, the complications, both personal and professional don’t. With interesting characters and dramatic plot twists, Kuhn creates a story you’ll want to keep at all the way to solving the murders and a surprise twist.
I would like to extend my thanks to Edelweiss and to Henery Press for giving me the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Notes: #4 in the Lila Maclean Academic Mystery Series; works well as a standalone
Publication: July 23, 2019—Henery Press
“Merrie’s the dearest friend—“ Simone mused, sweetly. She said most things sweetly, which was a misdirection of epic proportions.
“There has to be more to it than that. He doesn’t look like a cheater.”
“What does a cheater look like?”
Sometimes I forgot who she’d shown herself to be and trusted her again. Which usually didn’t turn out very well. She had a tendency to shift behaviors right when I’d let down my guard.
SO FUNNY! Share this with all of your English nerd friends and those English teachers you love to hate. History teachers will love it too! 😂😝🤓