Admin: Updates of the Good Kind

Hi everyone

So, the observant among might have noticed there was no new book review today. Honestly? I’ve not yet begun to read the book I had planned to review. It’s hard to focus on new fiction when your brain won’t cooperate. Yep, I’ve been sick for a portion of the past week and taking it easy. Thankfully, I’m back to my usual self and normal service should be resumed.

On a positive note, you’ll want to repoint your browsers. I no longer have a long website address. Yesterday, I updated my subscription and this website’s new address is mccombsonmain.com You should no longer see annoying advertising when you come to visit.

This financial commitment means that I am committed to expanding this website. Right now the activity is all on the blog, and almost every entry on the blog is a book review. My original intention, however, was to focus on a couple of different subjects: history, books, travel, and dog friendly locations. Almost all of these can interconnect on some level: the majority of the books I review, for example, are either historical fiction or about historical events. Many of the places I visit are historical in nature, and/or dog friendly. I’ll also share more about my work in fair trade, because I am also committed to improving the lives of others.

So you’ll see some changes over the coming weeks, but you’ll also continue to see some familiar topics such as the book reviews. I hope you’ll stick with me and enjoy the ride we’re about to take. In the meantime, Happy Holidays, Happy Hanukkah, and Merry Christmas.

Sally

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The Bridge to Belle Island, by Julie Klassen

book coverDisclaimer: Although I received an electronic copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley, the words and opinions below are my own.

Julie Klassen is one of my go-to Christian fiction novelists. In a world where many Regency writers vie for attention, I know I can usually rely on her to provide work that’ll entertain me. Klassen is one of a select few who have taught me more about this particular era of my birth country’s history than any formal history classes did. Actually, the curriculum during my school years missed most of it and we gained a skewed perspective from BBC period comedies. I can also say that I am NOT a particular fan of Jane Austen. The 1990s BBC production of Pride and Prejudice gave me a slight appreciation of her work, but that’s it.

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Misleading Miss Verity, by Carolyn Miller

book coverDisclaimer: Although I received a copy of this book from the publisher, the words and opinions below are my own.

Let me start by saying, this is probably the first of Carolyn Miller’s Regency novels in which she got to set scenes in her home region of New South Wales, Australia. Early scenes in her latest work are set in old Sydney Town, an area full of convicts, released convicts, and other miscreants, and very different to the cosmopolitan city it is now. I got to spend a week in the city some thirty years ago, and my father has just announced he will be returning next year. While trying to follow the steps of our fictional hero, Anthony, on a map I got hopelessly sidetracked, looking to see where I once was and wondering which places my father might decide to visit.

But enough about me! What about the book? Continue reading

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The Spice King, by Elizabeth Camden

book coverDisclaimer: I purchased an electronic copy of this book. I was not required to write a review, and the words below are my own.

“For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?”

This quote from the Gospel of Mark is what came to mind as I sat down to write this review. Gray Delacroix is a man of means. In the aftermath of the Civil War, his father – a Virginia businessman who had lost everything after the state joined the Confederacy – started over and built an empire around the importation of various spices. Gray and his siblings inherited the business when Mr. Delacroix died, but it’s Gray who has taken on the lion’s share of running it. His younger brother, Luke, meanwhile has seemingly frittered away his life and his inheritance, and is now in a precarious situation. When a rival looks set to capture the spice market, Gray looks set to lose both his family and the business he and his father worked so hard to create. And that’s when Annabelle Larkin arrives; a woman whose goal is to work with Gray’s other enemy: the same Federal Government that confiscated his father’s original holdings.

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Review: Lioness: Mahlah’s Journey, by Barbara M. Britton

book coverDisclaimer: I purchased an electronic copy of this book. I was not required to write a review, and the words below are my own.

Confession time: the only reason I knew of the daughters of Zelophehad before Barbara M. Britton began her series on them is that I know a woman named Tirzah. I’ve yet to ask if she has four older sisters by the names of Mahlah, Noah (I thought that was a boy’s name), Hoglah, and Milcah! These were the names Zelophehad gave his daughters and, in this first book about them, Britton focuses on the oldest daughter. Using the meagre amount of information about the family found in the book of Numbers, Britton has crafted a tale of the final years of the Exodus from a female perspective.

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The Last Man at the Inn, by R. William Bennett

book coverDisclaimer: I received an electronic copy of this book from the Publisher via NetGalley. I was not required to write a review, and the words below are my own.

When we read the crucifixion accounts in the synoptic gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, we come across the previously unknown, yet now important, figure of Simon of Cyrene. Who was Simon? What was he doing there, so far from home? We know from his Hebrew name that he was Jewish, so it was possible that he was in Jerusalem for the Passover, but nothing else except that he was from a community in northern Africa. R. William Bennett sets out to imagine this man’s life and how he came to be known for thousands of years after.

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Fiction Review: The End of the Magi, by Patrick W. Carr

book coverDisclaimer: I received an electronic copy of this book from NetGalley. I was not required to write a review, and the words below are my own.

Patrick W. Carr is known for his fantasy novels, and these aren’t usually novels in which I have an interest. But when I saw a new novel with the title of the End of the Magi, well, I knew I was probably looking at a work of Biblically-based fiction. And I do find those interesting. Given the timing of its release, I presumed this was a Christmas tale, focusing on the Messiah’s birth. After all, isn’t that how we know about the Magi? But it’s actually so much more than that. It can be read at Easter, and at Pentecost, and at any other time you desire.

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Review: Fate of the Redeemed, by Chad Pettit

Fate of the Redeemed JustRead Blog + Review Tour
Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour & Giveaway for Fate of the Redeemed by Chad Pettit, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Fate of the Redeemed by Chad PettitTitle: Fate of the Redeemed
Series: Journey of Fate #2
Author: Chad Pettit
Publisher: Ambassador International
Release Date:
October 1, 2019
Genre: Suspense Fantasy

An angel with amnesia. A demon with a vendetta. The man caught in their crossfire.

Lester Sharp has been given a second chance to live a life of compassion, but his decision to follow God will be tested when his estranged father calls to tell him his brother has been killed in combat. A demon unleashes a series of attacks on him, and someone he thought was lost to his past emerges.

Lester is guarded by the angel, Draven, but when Morane catches the watcher off his guard, Draven loses his memory and finds himself being held prisoner in a remote Somali village. His only ally is Ibrahim, a man who finds out his son has been murdered by extremists when his granddaughter appears out of nowhere and somehow possesses supernatural powers.

As Morane’s fury is unleashed, time is running out for Lester, and Draven’s fate is in the hands of a man whose faith is being pushed to the limit.

While Lester fights for his life—and for his soul—will he make the right choices, or will he decide—once and for all—that he doesn’t need God? And why is one man so important in the midst of spiritual warfare?

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository


MY REVIEW

Disclaimer: I received an electronic copy of this book. The words and opinions below are my own. Continue reading

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Fiction Review: A Distance Too Grand, by Regina Scott

book coverDisclaimer: I received a copy of this book from Revell as part of the Revell Reads blogger program. The only requirement was that I must write a review. The following words and opinions are my own.

In 2016, the National Park Service celebrated its centennial. Perhaps this inspired authors to set their new work in one of many national parks in the country. I finished reading and reviewing a series set in various parks by one Christian writer earlier in the year, and am now here reviewing the start of a new series by a different author set in similar locations.

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Review: The Rescue, by Tanya Eavenson

Disclaimer: I received an electronic copy of this book through JustRead Publicity Tours. The following review consists of my personal thoughts on this book.

It’s 1886, and young Boston socialite Rosalind is forced into a three year courtship to a man many years older, by her father… who has essentially sold her to cover his debts. Her future husband is a piece of work, but everyone’s too scared of him to say anything. Meanwhile, her best friend has suddenly upped and moved to Texas with his family…

There are lots of questions to be answered in this novel, including the one that asks which man is more despicable: the man who sold his daughter, or the man he gives her to. This was an answer I couldn’t immediately answer as, like Rosalind, I wasn’t sure until the very end which characters to trust. Yes, this is a romance book, but I found it to be incredibly tense as well. I kept waiting for that other shoe to drop, and indeed it did.

The Rescue is the first book in the All Roads Lead to Texas series by Tanya Eavenson. It appears to be self-published, which can often be problematic. My biggest problem is that the ending seemed a bit rushed. I would’ve preferred it to be have been more drawn out and detailed, especially given the tension. But the characters are strongly written, enough to provoke reaction, and the romance is sweetly done.

Product Details:

Publisher: All Roads Publishing

Publication Date: 01 September 2019

Tanya Eavenson’s Website

Available on: Amazon

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