The Fourth Fisherman: How Three Mexican Fishermen Who Came Back from the Dead Changed My Life and Saved My Marriage

We each came to a moment of brokenness;
what we found there was God.
And he was enough.It was the subject of headlines around the world:  Three Mexican fishermen in a small open boat without any supplies, drifting for more than nine months and 5,500 miles across the Pacific Ocean. Through blistering sun and threatening storms, they battle starvation, dehydration, hopelessness, and death. Their lifelines? An unwavering faith and a tattered Bible.Thousands of miles away, Joe Kissack, a successful Hollywood executive, personified the American dream. He enjoyed the trappings of the good life: a mini mansion, sports cars, and more. He had it made. Yet the intense pressure of his driven and high-powered career sends him into a downward spiral, driving him deep into suicidal depression, insidious addictions, and alienation from his family. His lifelines? A friend and a Bible on the table between them.

Thoughtfully told with candor and humor, Kissack weaves together the incredible true voyage of fishermen adrift in the sea and his own life’s journey as a man lost in the world. It is a story that will buoy your spirit and renew your hope and faith.

MY REVIEW

Joe Kissack did an awesome job of writing the story of the 3 Mexican Fishermen who survived almost ten months on the ocean in 2006. By writing this story as a comparison between the faith that helped the fishermen as they battled the extreme difficulties and the problems we face in our life, he brought the reader into the story. It is very well written, and the simularities of the sharks of the ocean and the sharks of the world are clearly explained.

By opening his own life to the public, he faced his own fears and insecurities, and so shows us how God can save us from our own trials. What do we have in common with mexican fishermen or the Joes of the Hollywood world? Well, we all have obsticles to overcome, whether it is our own natures, our childhood fears or attitudes. Honestly, I was reluctant to request this book because I did not think I would enjoy it. Once again, I was proved wrong, and am glad I stepped out of my comfort zone to read this. I saw things in a different way than I had before. I would rcommend this to everyone, whether you prefer non-fiction books or fiction novels.

i received the ebook free from Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers through their Blogging For Books program for the purpose of reviewing. i was not required to write a positive review. The opinions stated are my own.

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Promise Me This

Book Description

Publication Date: January 20, 2012
Michael Dunnagan was never supposed to sail on the Titanic, nor would he have survived if not for the courage of Owen Allen. Determined to carry out his promise to care for Owen’s relatives in America and his younger sister, Annie, in England, Michael works hard to strengthen the family’s New Jersey garden and landscaping business.

Annie Allen doesn’t care what Michael promised Owen. She only knows that her brother is gone—like their mother and father—and the grief is enough to swallow her whole. As Annie struggles to navigate life without Owen, Michael reaches out to her through letters. In time, as Annie begins to lay aside her anger that Michael lived when Owen did not, a tentative friendship takes root and blossoms into something neither expected. Just as Michael saves enough money to bring Annie to America, WWI erupts in Europe. When Annie’s letters mysteriously stop, Michael risks everything to fulfill his promise—and find the woman he’s grown to love—before she’s lost forever.

MY REVIEW

Cathy Gohlke has written a phenominal emotional and poignant novel based on the happenings of the times around the sinking of the great Unsinkable Ship the Titanic and the War to end all wars World War I. The reader is drawn to the gutter rat – Irish orphan and abused child Michael Dunnigan and the up and coming gardener Owen Allen and his orphan sister Annie. Loyalty and generosity are perhaps their biggest and at the same time worst virtue. Enter Aunt Elizabeth, jealous, bitter and everything evil. How this all contects together, is for you, the reader to find out.

Christ’s unending, unconditional love shines brighter against the dark background of the world and this brilliant light shines through the book. There were times when my heart was heavy and I hardly wanted to turn the page for fear of what would come to view about the world and the lives of the characters of Promise Me This, but then, I needed to find out how things would end. I have read enough novels of this type that end realistically, not necessarily as I as the reader would want them to.

This novel is very well written, and the discriptions of first of all the Titanic as well as the world as it was then very vivid. I could almost see the massive amounts of plants and luxuries afforded to those sailing in the ship, and the countryside in New Jersey at the nurseries. The war scenes were just as graphic, and those that have too much imagination might want to skim over parts of this. But don’t let that stop you from picking up an awesome novel. Right and Good does triumph over Evil.

 

You may purchase this book anywhere great novels are sold.

Attracted to Fire

Attracted to FireSpecial Agent Meghan Connors’ dream of one day protecting the president of the United States is about to come true. Only one assignment stands in her way. After the vice president’s rebellious daughter is threatened, Meghan is assigned to her protective detail on a secluded ranch in West Texas. Unfortunately, working with Special Agent in Charge Ash Zinders may be as tough as controlling her charge. Ash has a reputation for being critical and exacting, and he’s also after the same promotion as Meghan. But when the threats escalate and security on the ranch is breached, it becomes clear this isn’t the work of a single suspect—it’s part of a sophisticated plan that reaches deeper and higher than anyone imagined. And only Ash and Meghan can put the pieces together before it’s too late.

 

MY REVIEW

I just finished this fast paced action filled drama about the work of the secret Service Special Agents. This is one suspenseful novel that I had a hard time putting down, even though I knew I desperately needed to sleep. There were numerous conflicts to keep the adrenaline flowing – between the two Secret Agents (Secret Agent Meghan Conner and Secret Agent in Charge Ash Zinders, nicnamed A2Z) who were competing for the same office, the men and women thrown together on a working ranch, the vice president’s daughter and those trying to keep her safe, and even after the reader was told who the villains were, this continued.

I enjoyed learning how the characters learnt to trust each other and God in spite of the evidence they had, which is perhaps the main core of the novel. Trust between child and parent, learning to differentiate between what emotions tell you and what reality tells you. Mix in the angst of an angry daughter using drugs and alcohol to deaden perceived hurts and you have the making of a hair raising ride. Hang on tight, or get off. This book is not for the faint hearted who are looking for a rocking chair read.

I was so involve with all the action happening, I am not sure that I noticed much about the area in Texas where the Dancin’ Dust Ranch is located. The novel was well written and it took a while after I was done for my heart beat to slow down to normal. Good thing, because I want to sleep tonight.

 

This book is available at all the major bookstores including Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble, and Christianbooks.com

Not In The Heart

Not in the Heart


Book Description

Publication Date: January 20, 2012
Truman Wiley used to report news stories from around the world, but now the most troubling headlines are his own. He’s out of work, out of touch with his family, out of his home. But nothing dogs him more than his son’s failing heart.With mounting hospital bills and Truman’s penchant for gambling his savings, the situation seems hopeless . . . until his estranged wife throws him a lifeline—the chance to write the story of a death row inmate, a man convicted of murder who wants to donate his heart to Truman’s son.

As the execution clock ticks down, Truman uncovers disturbing evidence that points to a different killer. For his son to live, must an innocent man die? Truman’s investigation draws him down a path that will change his life, his family, and the destinies of two men forever.

MY REVIEW

The quote from Tom Stoppard “Life is a gamble, at terrible odds – if it was a bet, you wouldn’t take it” starts off this latest novel by Chris Fabry.

Truman comes across as a very selfish man, caring for himself rather than for his wife who is the sole caregiver for their son, Aiden, who was born with congenital heart disease, and at the age of eighteen years old is on the list for a heart transplant and their daughter Abigail. I had a hard time connecting with Truman for this reason. In contrast to this, Ellen his wife is approachable as a mother trying to do all she can to save her son, while also being their for her daughter. Terrell is someone you are anxious for, a guy that you hope will get a second chance.

Yet in spite of that I found Not in the Heart to be an emotional, edge of your seat novel as Chris takes us through the legal quagmire of organ donors, innocent men on death row and the families of those who are facing a sure imminent death. The tension was so tight, that even thinking about it a while later, I need to remind myself to relax, and take a deep breath. The twists and turns kept me reading long after I should have put it down. But this is not a novel only of doom and gloom and darkness. Chris Fabry writes a novel of hope and redemption.

I believe that the sign of a excellent novel is one where you remember the characters long after you are finished reading it, and this is one of those.

The Last Plea Bargain

The Last Plea Bargain

Overview

Plea bargains may grease the rails of justice, but for Jamie Brock, prosecuting criminals is not about cutting deals. In her three years as assistant DA, she’s never plea-bargained a case and vows she never will. But when a powerful defense attorney is indicted for murder and devises a way to bring the entire justice system to a screeching halt, Jamie finds herself at a crossroads. One by one, prisoners begin rejecting deals. Prosecutors are overwhelmed, and felons start walking free on technicalities. To break the logjam and convict her nemesis, Jamie must violate every principle that has guided her young career. But she has little choice. To convict the devil, sometimes you have to cut a deal with one of his demons.

MY REVIEW

The Last Plea Bargain

 

Randy Singer does an awesome job of walking a lay person, or the average reader through the technicalities of the judicial system. I may not remember most of it, but enough that the novel came alive in his words.

Jamie Brock has a lot on her mind…her mother was killed 3 years ago and at the start of the novel her father is on life support since his latest stroke. Besides that, she is assistant District Attorney in the office of the man who is running for political office. This novel is primarily the story of her trying to avenge her Mother’s death, while dealing with her job. Let’s not forget her brother Chris, who is a preacher, and has unconditionally forgive the one convicted of their mother’s murder, who has said he has had a conversion and is now following Christ. Bereavement and subsequently the grieving, hate, then forgiveness of both herself and others, reaching out to those you love, trust, these are all tightly intertwined with felons, betrayal, murders and more to make a deep impact on the reader. It explores the question of how different are we from any one else? Is there any room for changing our firm decisions on what we believe to be true?

Although the story started out slow and almost benign, it became the heart stopping, edge of the seat drama I expect from a suspense novel. Full of twists and turns that make it such a great read, the climax still caught me by surprise.

 

The Widow of Saunders Creek – Tracy Bateman

Product Details

Book Description

Publication Date: May 8, 2012
A grief that knows no boundary. 
A love without any limit. 
A need that doesn’t end at death. 
 
Corrie Saunders grew up in a life of privilege. But she gave it all up for Jarrod, her Army husband, a man she knew was a hero when she vowed to spend her life with him. She just didn’t expect her hero to sacrifice his life taking on an Iraqi suicide bomber.  
 
Six months after Jarrod’s death, Corrie retreats to the family home her husband inherited deep in the Missouri Ozarks. She doesn’t know how to live without Jarrod—she doesn’t want to. By moving to Saunders Creek and living in a house beloved by him, she hopes that somehow her Jarrod will come back to her. 
 
Something about the house suggests maybe he has. Corrie begins to wonder if she can feel Jarrod’s presence. 
 
Jarrod’s cousin Eli is helping Corrie with the house’s restoration and he knows that his dead cousin is not what Corrie senses. Eli, as a believing man and at odds with his mystically-oriented family members, thinks friendly visits from beyond are hogwash.  But he takes spirits with dark intentions seriously. Can he convince Corrie that letting go of Jarrod will lead to finding her footing again— and to the One she can truly put her faith into? 
 
MY REVIEW

Tracy has done a phenomenal job of taking a controversial subject and dealing with it realistically, and nonjudgemental in this heart warming novel of a woman who lost her husband to the war too soon. Are ghosts real? Do they talk to the living? Can we really communicate with our loved ones who have died? The story is told from two points of view, both in the first person, but it draws in the reader and you feel as if Corrie and Eli are in the room telling you what has happened in the last month. Only it becomes more intimate because you don’t need to stop and say I said, she said, he said or did. And by giving the name at the beginning of section, the reader is not confused as to whose mind we are inside. The characters are all well developed, and we see the carpentergrowth in them, both Corrie and Eli to the secondary characters of Lola (Corrie’s sister) and Joe (carpenter) as well as others in the community. From deep mourning and dispair in Corrie’s case to reaching out to others, and in Eli’s situation from envy to acceptance. I would recommend this to my friends.

 

I received this ebook free from Waterbrook Press through their Blogging for Books program. I was not required to give a positive review, just an honest one which I have done. The opinions stated are my own.