Category Archives: Christian Living Book Reviews

Book Review: To Heaven and Back by Mary C. Neal

What an extraordinary story! I enjoyed reading about the miraculous events in Mary’s life and what God taught her through them. And more than what God taught her – how he transformed her.

These events in Mary’s life, including seeing heaven and coming back to earth, prepared her for the work she still needed to do on earth and also prepared her for other things she would go through.

There were some doctrinal issues in the book that I disagree with, but for the most part, I was encouraged by Mary and what she has to say in the book. It certainly helped me to remember that miraculous events still happen and that they are all around us. We will see them if we just open our eyes and look.

Great book! Four stars from me.

Thank you to the publisher for giving me this copy to review.


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Book Review: Named by God by Kasey Van Norman

I really enjoyed this book. Kasey is amazingly open and honest. She tells her story of finding God and finding forgiveness. But also speaks of terrible judgmental attitudes of those around her–people she used to call friends.

Kasey is encouraging to anyone who has sin in their lives (which would be every human living today) and illustrates beautifully how God fully forgives and uses our weakness for his purpose.

Book description: In many ways, Kasey Van Norman has suffered more heartbreak than one woman can bear. Growing up, she endured her parents’ divorce, date rape, and years of addiction to sex, cutting, and eating disorders. As an adult, Kasey has endured a painful miscarriage; the heartbreak (and restoration) of infidelity; a cancer diagnosis; rejection by her friends, church, and community; and her mother’s death from cancer. But at the end of this twisting path of sorrow, Kasey walked out of the wilderness and into a place of God’s merciful and miraculous healing and redemption. In Named by God, Kasey shares her story of God’s infinite grace and compassion so that others might learn from her experience as they encounter a depth of Jesus like never before!

Thank you to the publisher for providing this copy for review.


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Book Review: The Runner’s Devotional by Niesluchowski and Veerman

Runners Devotional, Niesluchowski, veerman, book on running

This book is really great for me. I am a beginner runner, and it gives a lot of good advice. I really enjoyed the stories of how people became involved in running and what their inspiration was. There are quite a few passages that are written in first person though that don’t say who wrote them. Other than that, I very much like this book.

Each chapter touches on a different subject that has to do with running, gives questions to think about, other people’s experiences, journal space, and running log. It is very practical for those who want to learn more about running, but also those who want to get closer to God and grow in Christ through running.

Very well written by a father/daughter duo. I highly recommend it. Very inspirational.

Thank you Tyndale for sending me this copy to review.


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Book Review: The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven by Kevin and Alex Malarky

the boy who came back from heaven, alex malarky, book review, kevin malarky, books about heaven, book about heaven, boy who went to heavenWhat a story! Alex has lived miracle after miracle, and it was just amazing to read about. It was also heartbreaking. I can’t imagine the horror Alex’s parents went through after a car accident that left him in a coma for two months. It is a difficult road that God has the Malarky’s on, but in the difficulty, God is still blessing and showing Himself faithful.

I’m glad Alex and his dad wrote this book. God is really using Alex’s story to boost other people’s faith. This is a book you should not miss. It’s amazing!


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Book Review: Forgotten God by Francis Chan

Forgotten God, Francis Chan, Holy Spirit, book reviewYou will always be challenged by Francis Chan. Forgotten God, in some ways, is very basic, but in other ways Francis brings a fresh energy to the church as a whole and a challenge to get back to doing things as the Holy Spirit leads.

I loved the book. Francis has a humility about him that I believe God uses to speak to others. When you read his books or watch his videos, you get the sense that there is less of Francis Chan and more of the Holy Spirit shining through him.

This book will refresh your understand of the Holy Spirit or help you learn how the Holy Spirit does His work in your heart if you are new to the concept. For me, it reinforced what I’ve been learning from the Holy Spirit recently and how He has been growing my faith and confidence in God’s plans for our lives.



Book Review: Surprised by Oxford by Carolyn Weber

Surprised by Oxford, carolyn weber, kent weber, tdh, oxford, enland, memoir

I was surprised by Surprised by Oxford! I thought it would be heady, intelligent, and boring. It was intelligently and brilliantly written, as a matter of fact, but it was anything but boring. I thought I was going to have to make myself get through it so I could write my review, but it was so good, I had to make myself stop reading it at times. This book gets high marks from me!

I loved Carolyn’s story. I loved the romance and her search for more. If I hadn’t known this was a memoir, I would have thought it was fiction – it really read like a good novel.

I also enjoyed the setting of Oxford. Carolyn Weber really took me there and gave me a close-up tour of the place and traditions and charm of Oxford. I’d love to visit someday to see the places in the book.

I highly recommend Surprised by Oxford. This is one of those books that you wish would never end.

Thank you to the publisher for sending a copy of this book for review.

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Posted by on August 23, 2011 in Christian Living Book Reviews


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Book Review: Desiring God by John Piper

Desiring God, Desiring God revised edition, desiring god updated, john piper

If you are looking to go deeper in your understanding of what the Christian life is all about, you must read this book. John Piper delves into the joy and happiness we can experience in God and also teaches that praise and worship flow as a natural reaction to the joy we find in God’s presence.

I have really enjoyed reading this book. I have learned things I didn’t know and things that I just haven’t thought of in this light. Piper contends that the Christian life should be the pursuit of happiness – not in fleeting, earthly pleasures, but in living in God’s presence.

You will find, as you read this book, that no matter what circumstance you are in, if you seek God’s glory, He will share it with you and bless you with joy and peace.

John Piper is a very studied individual and I fully appreciated his thoughts on the subject and thank God that there are people like John who go deeply into the Bible and draw out such wonderful truths. I’m looking forward to reading more of John’s books and gaining more understand through them.

Thank you Multnomah for providing this book for my review.


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