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Word of Mouth

Faithful Fifteen


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FaithfulReader.com Newsletter!

This Month on FaithfulReader.com

November 2007

On FaithfulReader.com

Giving Thanks...

The 2007 Christmas Roundup

FaithfulReader.com Talks to Brian McLaren, Author of EVERYTHING MUST CHANGE

FaithfulReader.com Talks to Dr. Henry Cloud, Author of THE SECRET THINGS OF GOD

Gary Thomas, Author of THE BEAUTIFUL FIGHT, Answers The Faithful Fifteen

Now in Stores: HOW STRONG WOMEN PRAY by Bonnie St. John

Now in Stores: JOY COMES THIS MORNING by Norma DeShields Brown
Now in Stores: ADDICTED TO COUNTERFEIT LOVE by Vikki Johnson

New Discussion Guides for Christian Book Groups

Faithful Fiction Reviews

Christian Living Reviews

Marriage and Family Life Reviews

FaithfulReader.com Poll

FaithfulReader.com Question of the Month
Word of Mouth: What You're Reading
Quick Links

FaithfulReader.com
Fiction
Christian Living
Marriage and Family Life
Author Interviews

Giving Thanks...

Autumn keeps playing hide and seek here in New York. One day the temperatures hover in the 60s; the next it plunges into the 30s making it hard to believe that next week the holidays kick off with Thanksgiving. I have been traveling a lot and confess that this holiday snuck up on me --- it IS early this year --- but I look forward to pulling together a traditional menu for family and neighbors. I have a favorite list of recipes that I bring out for this meal, but I also try to weave in one new one. If you have a favorite to share, send it my way at Carol@bookreporter.com. At the same time share the name of your favorite author or a genre of books that you enjoy. If I end up making your recipe, I will send a book your way as a thank you.

November and December can be a very busy time of the year for many of us. Often we find ourselves rushing around doing chores that will tug our focus from the true meanings of these holidays. To encourage you to focus on the meaning, we have compiled a number of fiction and nonfiction titles that reminds us of the true spirit of Christmas. Whether you are searching for a good read or hoping to find the perfect gift for a fellow faithful reader, our 2007 Christmas Roundup is a surefire way to get you in the right holiday mood.

We have three new interviews this month. Brian McLaren, who has written over 10 highly acclaimed books in the Christian community, tells us about the inspiration behind his new work, EVERYTHING MUST CHANGEDr. Henry Cloud, a clinical psychologist, talks about his latest effort, THE SECRET THINGS OF GOD, which is a Christian alternative to Rhonda Byrne’s bestseller THE SECRET. And Gary Thomas, author of THE BEAUTIFUL FIGHT, answers The Faithful Fifteen.

One of our new featured titles this month is ADDICTED TO COUNTERFEIT LOVE by Vikki Johnson. In this empowering book, Johnson aims to assist those in unsatisfying and spiritually draining relationships to build stronger relationships with God and those around them. Another title we are spotlighting, JOY COMES THIS MORNING by Norma DeShields Brown, is a thoughtful collection of scripture and devotions that will strengthen and deepen your own relationship with God.

As always, new reviews have been added to our Faithful Fiction, Christian Living and Marriage and Family Life sections, including HOW STRONG WOMEN PRAY by Bonnie St. John. In this autobiographical story, St. John interweaves intimate reflections on prayer by inspiring women.

Also included in our lineup are two new discussion guides that most assuredly will stimulate lively conversation among members of Christian book groups: A PROPER PURSUIT by Lynn Austin and DEAREST DOROTHY, IF NOT NOW, WHEN?! by Charlene Ann Baumbich.

Our poll and question this month take on the holiday theme. Do you buy holiday-themed books, and if so, what kind do you prefer? We also would like to know what some of your favorite holiday titles are.

As the holiday season races toward us, may you find time to reflect on what makes this time of year so special. Here’s to a safe, healthy and happy Thanksgiving. I know that I give thanks for all of you readers, who make what we do such a pleasure each month.

Carol Fitzgerald (Carol@bookreporter.com)


 

The 2007 Christmas Roundup

We at FaithfulReader.com have compiled a number of inspirational fiction and nonfiction titles perfect for the holiday season. Many of the books on our list will help you focus your prayer life in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Others offer ideas for blocking out commercialism and reflecting on the true meaning of the holiday. And even a few come with CDs to celebrate the beloved traditional carols. Be sure to read some of these selections with a child and rediscover the innocence and wonder of the season. We hope all of the titles in this year’s roundup will further the peace and joy of Christmastime in your homes.


Click here to read our 2007 Christmas roundup.



FaithfulReader.com Talks to Brian McLaren, Author of EVERYTHING MUST CHANGE

Pastor and speaker Brian McLaren is the author of such highly acclaimed books as FINDING FAITH, THE CHURCH ON THE OTHER SIDE, THE SECRET MESSAGE OF JESUS and THE VOICE OF LUKE. In this interview with FaithfulReader.com's Marcia Ford, McLaren talks about what inspired both the idea behind and the title of his latest work, EVERYTHING MUST CHANGE, and explains how it surpasses his previous efforts in scope and subject matter. He also shares his thoughts on the personal and social aspects of evangelism, the domestication of faith and the ever-shifting perspectives that Christians have of Jesus.

EVERYTHING MUST CHANGE: Jesus, Global Crises, and a Revolution of Hope by Brian D. McLaren (Religion & Spirituality)
Disenchanted evangelicals, progressive Christians and believers looking for a new way of living out their faith look to Brian McLaren to help them clarify the swirling mass of thoughts and questions and gnawing doubts they harbor. In EVERYTHING MUST CHANGE McLaren asks two essential questions: "What are the biggest problems in the world?" and "What does Jesus have to say about these global crises?" Reviewed by Marcia Ford.

-Click here to read a review of EVERYTHING MUST CHANGE.

 

Click here to read our interview with Brian McLaren.



FaithfulReader.com Talks to Dr. Henry Cloud, Author of THE SECRET THINGS OF GOD

Dr. Henry Cloud is a clinical psychologist and the author or co-author of more than 20 books, including GOD WILL MAKE A WAY, BOUNDARIES and INTEGRITY. His latest work, THE SECRET THINGS OF GOD, offers a Christian alternative to Rhonda Byrne's THE SECRET, building on some of the book's tenets to reveal 20 of God's universal "secrets" that dictate how we approach our goals, desires, relationships and lives. In this interview with FaithfulReader.com's Margaret Oines, Dr. Cloud talks about why he chose to approach Byrne's teachings the way he did and shares his insights on them as both a scientist and a Christian. He also explains how these "secret things" can be applied to our day-to-day lives --- having the right tools to form the right relationships, for example --- offers words of wisdom to members of the modern church and its leaders, and discusses his upcoming book due out next spring.

THE SECRET THINGS OF GOD: Unlocking the Treasures Reserved for You by Dr. Henry Cloud (Christian Living)
Dr. Henry Cloud brings his insights as both a psychologist and a student of spiritual life to explore the eternal principles in the universe that govern our goals, desires, relationships and lives. These same truths, if activated in our lives, are guaranteed to fill them with security, hope and relationship with our eternal Creator. Reviewed by Margaret Oines.

-Click here to read a review of THE SECRET THINGS OF GOD. 

Click here to read our interview with Dr. Henry Cloud.



Gary Thomas, Author of THE BEAUTIFUL FIGHT, Answers The Faithful Fifteen

In this Faithful Fifteen interview, Gary Thomas --- the author of SACRED MARRIAGE, SACRED PATHWAYS, SACRED PARENTING and SACRED INFLUENCE --- explains that his calling as a writer is to help his readers use their relationships as an aid to personal and spiritual growth. He discusses how some of his fears about Christianity today can be remedied, as described in his latest book, THE BEAUTIFUL FIGHT, recounts his own faith journey and shares a touching experience with a reader whose marriage was saved with the help of his writing.

THE BEAUTIFUL FIGHT: Surrendering to the Transforming Presence of God Every Day of Your Life by Gary Thomas (Christian Life/Spiritual Growth)
Gary Thomas issues a passionate manifesto of faith fully alive. THE BEAUTIFUL FIGHT calls us beyond mere sin-avoidance to a robust holiness that radiates Christ through every aspect of our being. To see with Christ’s eyes, feel with Christ’s heart and serve with Christ’s hands --- this is what Christianity is truly about. Reviewed by Margaret Oines.

-Click here to read a review of THE BEAUTIFUL FIGHT.

Click here to read Gary Thomas's answers to The Faithful Fifteen.


Now in Stores: HOW STRONG WOMEN PRAY by Bonnie St. John

HOW STRONG WOMEN PRAY by Bonnie St. John (Christian Life/Inspirational)
Bonnie St. John’s amazing life story is interwoven with intimate reflections on prayer by inspiring women, given in interviews expressly for this book. The prayer lives of these strong ladies are supplemented by compelling stories about how they have, through prayer, faced extraordinary challenges. Reviewed by Michele Howe.

Click here to read a review of HOW STRONG WOMEN PRAY.


Now in Stores: JOY COMES THIS MORNING by Norma DeShields Brown

JOY COMES THIS MORNING by Norma DeShields Brown (Devotional)
Filled with thoughtful devotions, this powerful book enables you to begin each day with hope and wisdom. Each entry includes a Scripture reading followed by words of encouragement that will strengthen and deepen your own relationship with God. This beautifully written book will inspire and reward you again and again, nurturing your faith in God’s abiding love and guiding you on a spiritual journey that will sustain you throughout this year, and all the years to follow.

-Click here to read an excerpt from JOY COMES THIS MORNING.
-Click here to read Norma DeShields Brown’s bio.


Click here to read more about JOY COMES THIS MORNING.


Now in Stores: ADDICTED TO COUNTERFEIT LOVE by Vikki Johnson

ADDICTED TO COUNTERFEIT LOVE by Vikki Johnson (Relationships/Love & Marriage)
Ordained Elder and radio personality Vikki Johnson addresses the emotionally crippling behavior of being addicted to counterfeit love. Some people have become so conditioned to being in a pattern of unsatisfying and spiritually draining relationships that they can’t recognize what a truly genuine and loving partnership should be. The faith-based messages throughout this book will help readers get on the pathway to loving God and themselves the way He designed.

-Click here to read an excerpt from ADDICTED TO COUNTERFEIT LOVE.
-Click here to read Vikki Johnson’s bio.

Click here to read more about ADDICTED TO COUNTERFEIT LOVE.


New Discussion Guides for Christian Book Groups

We are featuring the following discussion guides for Christian Book Groups this month:

A PROPER PURSUIT by Lynn Austin
(Fiction)
Violet Hayes schemed her way to Chicago to discover romance and a mother she barely remembered. All of her relatives seem to have a different agenda in mind for her. In the course of a summer, Violet's world will open wide before her eyes. But in the wake of discovery, she must find a way to determine which path --- and which man --- will ultimately be the right choice for her.

-Click here to see the study guide for A PROPER PURSUIT.
-Click here to read more about A PROPER PURSUIT.
-Click here to read an excerpt from A PROPER PURSUIT.
-Click here to read Lynn Austin’s bio.


DEAREST DOROTHY, IF NOT NOW, WHEN?!
by Charlene Ann Baumbich
(Fiction)
The sixth installment in the Dearest Dorothy series picks up the story from book five: Will the mini-mall help bring the downtown back to life? Who will win the mayoral election? Charlene Ann Baumbich once again uses her wonderful gift of storytelling to create a delightful, heartwarming and hilarious novel filled with small town charm.

-Click here to see the study guide for DEAREST DOROTHY, IF NOT NOW, WHEN?!.
-Click here to read more about DEAREST DOROTHY, IF NOT NOW, WHEN?!.
-Click here to read Charlene Ann Baumbich’s bio.



Faithful Fiction Reviews

THE CHRISTMAS PROMISE by Donna VanLiere (Fiction)
Grace and the promise of new beginnings make Donna VanLiere’s fourth book in The Christmas Hope series a poignant seasonal read. VanLiere has a knack for crafting lovable characters who are tough and tender at the same time. Her tear-jerking situations will cause readers to break out the Kleenex. Reviewed by Cindy Crosby.

-Click here to see the Holiday Basket of Cheer feature for THE CHRISTMAS PROMISE on Bookreporter.com.

FINDING FATHER CHRISTMAS by Robin Jones Gunn
(Fiction)
Robin Jones Gunn, perhaps best known as the author of the Sisterchicks books, takes readers on a short holiday jaunt to England, where a young woman searches for the father she has never known. British Christmas traditions and theater trivia mingle with deeper themes of forgiveness, faith and the importance of family in this sweet Christmas story. Reviewed by Cindy Crosby.

UNWRAPPING CHRISTMAS by Lori Copeland
(Fiction)
Prolific novelist Lori Copeland spins this slim faith-filled story of an overloaded mom and the true meaning of the holiday. If you have trouble saying “no” when you’re asked to do something for a good cause, then this holiday tale will remind you of what’s most important. Reviewed by Cindy Crosby.

AURALIA'S COLORS: The Auralia Thread Series #1 by Jeffrey Overstreet (Fantasy)
Reader be warned: If you read AURALIA'S COLORS, the first installment in the Auralia Thread series, you’ll be hooked. Jeffrey Overstreet’s debut is compelling fantasy fiction, full of verve, imagination and, yes, color. Odd reptiles, ancient kingdoms and Christian symbolism are woven together in a way that entrances and enchants. Reviewed by Cindy Crosby.

FANCY PANTS by Cathy Marie Hake (Historical Fiction)
Veteran author Cathy Marie Hake pens the often-humorous tale of Lady Sydney Hathwell, who leaves England to disguise herself as a man and work as a ranch hand in Texas in the late 1800s. Plenty of fun --- and chaos --- is just around the corner. Reviewed by Cindy Crosby.


Click here to read our Faithful Fiction reviews.



Click here to read our Christian Living Reviews Click here to read our Christian Living Reviews

Christian Living Reviews

MOSAIC: Pieces of My Life So Far by Amy Grant (Memoir)
As the bestselling Christian music artist of all time, Amy Grant has lived much of her life in the spotlight. Now, for the first time, she bares her heart to reveal thoughts on everything from motherhood and marriage to fame and forgiveness. Reviewed by Evelyn Bence.

THE TEN-SECOND PRAYER PRINCIPLE: Praying Powerfully As You Go by Mark Littleton (Christian Living)
Mark Littleton offers helpful advice to those who feel themselves falling short when it comes to their prayer life. Whether you have difficulty focusing or you're uncomfortable praying out loud, this little book will give you the encouragement and confidence you need. Reviewed by Maggie Harding.

Click here to read our Christian Living reviews.


Marriage and Family Life Reviews

MAD ABOUT US: Moving From Anger to Intimacy with Your Spouse by Gary and Carrie Oliver (Marriage)
Carrie and Gary Oliver have written a practical book to help couples focus their passion in ways that lead to trust, understanding and intimacy. They want Christian couples to develop Christ-centered marriages, and that includes dealing with fear, frustration and anger --- issues that prevent intimacy. Reviewed by Margaret Oines.

THE TEN-MINUTE MARRIAGE PRINCIPLE: Quick, Daily Steps for Refreshing Your Relationship by Douglas Weiss, Ph.D. (Marriage)
Can you really change your marriage in 10 minutes a day? Discover why Douglas Weiss, author and executive director of the Heart to Heart Counseling Center, believes it is possible, if couples will implement his basic daily marriage exercises and learn to understand and negotiate with their spouse. Reviewed by Cindy Crosby.

Click here to read our Marriage and Family Life reviews.


FaithfulReader.com Poll

Do you buy holiday-themed books?

I buy them for myself.
I buy them to give.
I buy them to give and get.
I do not buy them.

What kind of holiday-themed books do you buy?
 
I buy only books with a spiritual theme.
I buy only secular titles.
I buy both secular titles and books with a spiritual theme.
I do not buy holiday-themed books.

Vote in our Poll here.



FaithfulReader.com Question of the Month
What are some of your favorite spiritual and/or secular holiday-themed books?

Answer the Question of the Month here.



Word of Mouth: What You're Reading
Tell us what books YOU are reading and loving --- or even those you don't. This contest period, one winner will receive HOW STRONG WOMEN PRAY by Bonnie St. John and TILL MORNING IS NIGH: A Wortham Family Christmas by Leisha Kelly. To put your name in the hat, submit your current reading list and ratings by completing the form here.
Tell us what you are reading here to be eligible to win!



As always, here are a few housekeeping notes. If you are seeing this newsletter in a text version, and would prefer to see the graphics, you can either read it online or change your preferences below.

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Thanks for reading....and don't forget to forward this newsletter to a friend.

--- Carol Fitzgerald (
Carol@bookreporter.com)

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