5 Terrific Things for Tuesday: (We know it is Wednesday!)
Now that your children are happily situated back at school you will have plenty of time to read! If you do happen to catch a few spare moments here are some suggestions from the fiction fanatics at River North.
Unveiled Freedom – by Jeanette Windle
This believable and timely story is told through 3 characters; Amy a young Christian NGO worker, Jamil a tortured soul and native Afghan, and Steve a cynical independent security contractor. Their lives intersect against the back drop of Afghanistan after the democratic elections and the implementation of Sharia law. I appreciated the author’s grace-filled approach to Afghan culture and the challenging questions raised about Christian “interference”. It has been 2-3 months since I finished Unveiled Freedom and I continue to ponder The Great Commission and closed cultures; it is that impactful.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society–by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
Set shortly after the end of WWII main character and author Juliet Ashton receives a letter from one of the book club members on the tiny island of Guernsey. Written in epistolary form, Juliet’s circle of friends on the tiny island grows as they share their enchanting and moving stories of living through the darkness of war. They are all drawn closer together as a community because of one of the inspirational inhabitants of the island. I wanted to catch the next flight to England and meet all the book club members when I finished reading. You too will feel like you have a larger circle of friends. Check out the audio book at your local library, if you can. Lovely to hear all of the voices of the characters—it adds a lot to the telling of the story.
The Pioneer Woman Cooks-by Ree Drummond
Every once in a while we all find ourselves in a routine for dinners that needs to be broken. This cookbook is the place for inspiration. The Pioneer Woman is a mother of 4 and a rancher’s wife. If she has time to whip up these great recipes, hopefully you can find time too, especially with school having started again. She has a great recipe for pizza with a homemade crust that is whole wheat and simple. She does a little bit of everything from Chicken Fried Steak to Asian Noodles with a very tasty glaze. There are plenty of pictures to draw you in and show you what you are aiming for. She also has plenty of dessert recipes to add to your collection. I have tried a handful of the recipes myself and our household is always satisfied, it is a little down home and a lot of delicious.
Almost Heaven – by Chris Fabry
As I read Almost Heaven, I couldn’t help but be touched deeply by the characters. I was struck by their ordinary lives and ordinary dreams that God used in very mighty ways if even in a small community. The tenderness of the main character was evident throughout the book even though he endured significant losses and unexpected turns. Billy lived his life with the deepest desire to serve God & bring glory to Him in the midst of hardship, disappointment & failures. I was profoundly moved by the gentleness of his spirit and the way in which God wove a beautiful tapestry out of the brokenness of Billy’s life. Almost Heaven will encourage you to live your life, however ordinary you think it is, seeing the value in touching people’s lives not gaining wealth or notoriety. It will bring focus to what is important in this life and you will see the greatness of being used by God in ways you might never have expected. Billy didn’t change the entire world, but God used him to change the lives of those he touched every day. What more could we ask for?!
Finally, we have to recommend a title of our own. Lone Star Trail and Captive Trail are two new releases here that we are so excited about. They are the first two in a series of six and they are sure to get you hooked.
The six-book series about four generations of the Morgan family living, fighting, and thriving amidst a turbulent Texas history spanning from 1845 to 1896 begins with Lone Star Trail. Judson (Jud) Morgan’s father died for Texas’ freedom during the war for independence. So when the Society for the Protection of German Immigrants in Texas (the Verein) attempts to colonize a New Germany in his country, he takes a stand against them. After Wande Fleischers’ fiancée marries someone else, the young fraulein determines to make new life for herself in Texas. With the help of Jud’s sister Marion, Wande learns English and becomes a trusted friend to the entire Morgan family. As much as Jud dislikes the German invasion, he can’t help admiring Wande. She is sweet and cheerful as she serves the Lord and all those around her. Can the rancher put aside his prejudice to forge a new future? Through Jud and Wande, we learn the powerful lessons of forgiveness and reconciliation among a diverse community of believers.
Captive Trail is second in a six-book series about four generations of the Morgan family living, fighting, and thriving amidst a turbulent Texas history spanning from 1845 to 1896. Although a series, each book can be read on its own. Taabe Waipu has run away from her Comanche village and is fleeing south in Texas on a horse she stole from a dowry left outside her family’s teepee. The horse has an accident and she is left on foot, injured and exhausted. She staggers onto a road near Fort Chadbourne and collapses. On one of the first runs through Texas, Butterfield Overland Mail Company driver Ned Bright carries two Ursuline nuns returning to their mission station. They come across a woman who is nearly dead from exposure and dehydration and take her to the mission. With some detective work, Ned discovers Taabe Waipu identity. He plans to unite her with her family, but the Comanche have other ideas, and the two end up defending the mission station. Through Taabe and Ned we learn the true meaning of healing and restoration amid seemingly powerless situations.
We hope you find these suggestions helpful!
~Your fiction team!