27 April 2013

The Survivor by DiAnn Mills

Why does a woman who survived a brutal attack as a child, but whose attacker was never found, want to tell her story in fiction. That is the question facing bestselling novelist, Kariss Walker. Does Amy Garrett have another motive other than just helping other victims come to terms with their lives by telling her story of survival?

As Kariss begins her research a number of seemingly unlinked events take place, including the bombing of a prominent business man's car, killing his wife and daughter. When Amy Garrett's car is also bombed, the FBI investigators start to wonder if there is a link between the two cases. They also wonder if there is a link to Amy's "cold case" which was never solved.

Add an unsuccessful coffee shop shooting, with bullets engraved with the victims' names, and these two independent, headstrong women end up sharing protective custody, only to have that go terribly wrong as well.

This book is full of twists and turns. Kariss's suspended relationship with one of the key FBI investigators adds a further complication, especially as Kariss has become a Christian and Tigo is still seeking.

I found it really hard to put this book down. Each chapter had new complications or intrigue. The characters were well developed, and the Christian content, while clear is not overwhelming. The supporting characters add depth to the story. The conclusion is not what you might expect.

With this title being the second in the series, I'm wanting to read the first one, and will definitely consider reading this author's works in the future.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

25 April 2013

Corrections or not???

With the majority of my students speaking English as their second language, it is an ongoing battle to have good English spoken and written in the classroom. In order to develop their writing and spelling skills we have a number of worksheet or workbook activities. As I check work, I usually mark errors with either a circle or a question mark and send students back to have another go. Sometimes I'll give them a clue as to the type of error they need to find, while other times I will simply highlight the directions and ask them to read the instructions/question again.

Today we had a discussion about why I ask the children to do their corrections. It was great to hear the reasons they came up with.

"To help us know where we went wrong so we can learn."
"So we won't think we got it all right and keep making the same mistakes."
"To help us learn".

There were others, but they've escaped my memory at the moment.

It would be easy just to mark things incorrect and let it go. It would take a little more time to mark it wrong and give them the correct answer. It takes much more time and effort to have the children do their own corrections, but it's worth it, especially when they understand and can verbalise why they need to do them. Also, since they know they will have to do the corrections, they have a greater motivation to do their very best the first time around, and to check their work!

17 April 2013

The Heiress of Winterwood by Sarah Ladd

I'm so glad I was on holidays when I started reading this book because it was very hard to put down.

The heiress to a lucrative estate befriends the wife of a neighbour, and promises to care for the child of that friend when the friend dies in childbirth. Where is the father of the child - away at sea. With her 24th birthday looming, and with it a deadline by which she must be married or lose her inheritance, Amelia Barrett is faced with a dilemma. Her intended refuses to allow the child to remain at Winterwood after their marriage! When baby Lucy's father returns home for a short visit, Amelia makes an unheard of proposition. In a time when only men should propose, Amelia proposes that she and Captain Graham Sterling should wed, allowing her to continue caring for baby Lucy while the Captain is away at sea. What will happen? What will happen with the man to whom Amelia has already been promised, and who she has agreed to marry, when discovers she is betrothed to another?

Add to the equation Amelia's uncle, who is her guardian, her aunt, and her cousin, as well as the Captain's brother who has a propensity for drunkenness and gambling, and things get very complicated.

This book is well written, with the characters well developed and realistic. The plot has enough twists in it to keep you turning page after page. Amelia's friendship with the local vicar's wife has taught her to trust God, and as the story unfolds she discovers a deeper more personal relationship with God. Scripture quotes are appropriate and not out of context, which is so important in today's world. Not only will this book entertain the reader, it will encourage the reader to know the one true God who provides comfort when no other can. Definitely worth reading.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

16 April 2013

A Matter of Trust by Lis Wiehl

Two dead prosecutors, a rebellious teenager, a homicide cop, a runaway teen, a screaming 4-year-old, two jobs, and a boss who seems more focused on election results than actual prosecutions are just some of the challenges facing single-mum Mia Quinn. With her husband killed in a road accident several months before the story opens, Mia Quinn is struggling to keep her head above water. She desperately wants to be a good mum to her kids, but also needs to find out who killed her best friend and colleague Colleen. Take a journey with Colleen and Charlie to find who killed two prosecutors. When her son is involved in a "flash mob" at the same time Mia has to decide whether to turn him in or keep quiet. What will happen? The twists in this plot will keep you turning the pages, as Mia and Charlie endeavour to leave no stone unturned in solving the mysteries before them.

If you are looking for a book with a well-developed primary plot and several sub-plots that will keep you turning the pages, then this book is for you. The characters are realistic, and the situations they face are also those facing many today. While Mia is not a Christian, her Dad has recently found Jesus and is doing his best to help Mia and show her that he has changed. The Christian content in this book is small, but the book is still well worth reading. In fact, it may be one you can easily share with non-Christian friends, knowing that the story is good, the gospel is stated clearly, but not in such a way that it will turn non-Christian readers away. An excellent read. In fact, it's so good I read it twice and enjoyed it both times.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.