May 25, 2016

Book Review: Love Without Limits by Nick Vujicic with Kanae Vujicic



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Great quote:  "Yet God can turn the worst into something that is beyond any dream. I'm thankful to God for that." (Words spoken by Nick Vujicic's father at Nick and Kanae's wedding - Page 121)

Picture credit: ChristianPost.com


Book summary:    "In Love Without Limits Nick and Kanae tell how they improbably found each other, fell in love, and then fought to overcome skepticism from others about their relationship. Filled with practical insights that will benefit any couple, this inspiring book describes a godly courtship and the early years of the Vujicics’ marriage and parenting journey." (Back Cover) 


Pic Credit: Google Images

My thoughts:  Love Without Limits by Nick and Kanae Vujicic is without a doubt one of those unforgettable books that leaves the readers wondering "What would I do?" As chronicled in this book, Life Without Limits, Nick Vujicic was born without arms and legs. As he child he struggled deeply with self-worth and bullying, even contemplating suicide at the age of 10 years old. Vujicic cried out to God for help and God has delivered in Vujicic's life in a big way.

Vujicic is now a world traveling motivational speaker and evangelical preacher for the power of God. Along the way to his book and internet video fame, Vujicic found love with Kanae. Their relationship was rocky at the start, but has blossomed into a loving marriage and family. Their book Love Without Limits focuses on the pain of being single while waiting for that special someone.

I enjoyed this book immensely, particularly because Nick Vujicic is such a positive and uplifting guy. However, I do wish the book had focused more on their personal story and how they cope with Nick's challenges more. As it is, Love Without Limits focuses heavily on young singles looking for that lifetime soulmate.

Without a doubt, the Vujicic's patient and loving relationship, life lessons and reliance of God's power can translate into any reader's life, though. The testimony of the Vujicics is inspiring and motivational for all readers, but especially the single readers and those facing hardships in a relationship.


Rating: 4.5 of 5 stars


Book Facts:
  • Pages:   243
  • Year originally published:    2014




Purchase on Amazon:  Love Without Limits by Nick Vujicic 



 
FTC Disclosure: Lavish Bookshelf received this product complimentary in exchange for an honest review. The opinions in this review are solely the opinion of the author. Lavish Bookshelf was not required to provide a positive review and did not receive any further compensation. Links in this post may be an affiliate link to another website. When you purchase item through an affiliate link, Lavish Bookshelf may receive monetary compensation for the referral of the sale.

May 24, 2016

Book Review: Hunting Hope by Nika Maples




Great quote:  To be honest, this entire book is FILLED with great quotes! 

  • "No one equips - no one empowers - like out God." (Page 74)
  • "Our scars do not define us, but, in a way, they do identify us as survivors. We cannot be more concerned with our appearance than our authority in Christ." (Page 113)
  • "The problem is not that HE forgets how much He loves us; the problem is that WE forget how much He loves us." (Page 140)




Image from Nika's inspiring blog: NikaMaples.com

Book summary:   "Maybe it doesn't matter what causes suffering in our lives as much as it matters what suffering causes in our lives. Maybe we were all meant to be hope hunters." (Litfuse)


My thoughts:  Hunting Hope by Nika Maples is the type of book that I adore. I love to hear about people who have been down a dark path and emerged from it all still praising and singing! Maples book truly will help others hunt for and hopefully find their own hope.

At the age of 20, Nika Maples suffered a severe stroke and was given 48 hours to live. In the end she did survive, learning to walk and talk again. Eventually she became a public school teacher, even winning Teacher of the Year! And along the way she learned a thing or two about finding hope in Jesus and having the faith to persevere.

Nika Maples describes many seasons of "winter" in her life, when things looks incredibly bleak. By learning to hunt for hope, to strive forward in her faith, she began to strive towards the other seasons in her life that are filled with hope and joy. It's no exaggeration to say that a fabulously inspiring quote can be found on almost every page of this book. Maples not only lives her faith, she radiates it and spreads it outward.

The first part of Hunting Hope is organized by 15 small chapters that each point to God and His hand on each and every person's life. Chapter titles include "He Knows How Much It Hurts" and "He Hears You." The second part of Hunting Hope focuses on Our Character with five topics such as "Choosing Humility" and "Give Grace." 

If you are stuck in your own "winter" and can't seem to find a way out, Maples is here to say that you can find hope. In each and every situation, whether it is good or bad, Maples leans on the God moments, fully believing that hope is ours for the asking.



Rating: 5 of 5 stars


Book Facts:
  • Pages:   240 
  • Year originally published:   2016
  • Author: "Nika Maples is the author of Twelve Clean Pages, the memoir of her survival of lupus and a stroke that left her quadriplegic at age 20. After learning to walk and talk again, she became a public school teacher, winning 2007 Texas Secondary Teacher of the Year. She holds an MA in English Education from Columbia University and currently is pursuing an MDIV from The King's University. When she is not traveling to speak, she lives, writes, and laughs as much as possible in Fort Worth, Texas."

  • Book Tour:  My review is part of a larger collection of reviews of this title. For more information, please visit LitFuse Publicity

Purchase on Amazon:   Hunting Hope by Nika Maples 
 
FTC Disclosure: Lavish Bookshelf received this product complimentary in exchange for an honest review. The opinions in this review are solely the opinion of the author. Lavish Bookshelf was not required to provide a positive review and did not receive any further compensation. Links in this post may be an affiliate link to another website. When you purchase item through an affiliate link, Lavish Bookshelf may receive monetary compensation for the referral of the sale.

May 22, 2016

Book Review: When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi



Great quote:  "I am no longer a new bride or a young woman. I am a mother, farther from Kabul than I have ever been. My children and I have crossed mountains, deserts, and oceans to reach this dank hotel room, utterly unsophisticated and unfragrant. This land is not what I expected. Good thing all that I coveted from a youthful distance is no longer important to me." (Page 2) 



Pic credit:  Geography.About.Com


Book summary:   Mahmoud's passion for his wife Fereiba, a schoolteacher, is greater than any love she's ever known. But their happy, middle-class world—a life of education, work, and comfort—implodes when their country is engulfed in war, and the Taliban rises to power. Mahmoud, a civil engineer, becomes a target of the new fundamentalist regime and is murdered. Forced to flee Kabul with her three children, Fereiba has one hope to survive: she must find a way to cross Europe and reach her sister's family in England.


My thoughts:  When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi is a haunting story that humanizes a story that is played over and over on our American evening news. When Fereiba's husband Mahmoud is killed by the Taliban, Fereiba is forced to flee her home in Kabul. Traveling thousands of miles over land and see, she sadly becomes separated from her oldest son, Saleem. Carrying on without her teenaged son, Fereiba continues to flee twoards her sister's home in England. She does not know what has become of Saleem. Is he safe? Is he in Europe? Will her family ever be reunited again?

Watching the story of refugees from Syria and other places on the news can often leave people with a detached feeling. The stories on TV are sad, but somehow not quite real. In the book When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi, readers are taken into the family dynamics to see the changes that forces like the Taliban can wreak on a home. 

Author Hashimi is an excellent writer who paints the gut-wrenching images of a family torn apart. The story of escape from the Kabul home is harrowing. As a mother, it is difficult to imagine being separated from a teenaged son in the midst of such familial turmoil.

When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi is not a fun lively read. The ending is also left open, much like the lives of those who are actually living as refugees in lands far from their homes. Readers who love exploring the deep emotions of personal tragedies and learning about personal situations almost beyond comprehension will gain a lot from reading When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi.



Rating: 4 of 5 stars


Book Facts:
  • Pages:    416
  • Year originally published:   2016
  • Book Tour:   My review is part of a larger collection of review of this title. For more information, please visit TLC Book Tours
Purchase on Amazon:  When the Moon is Low by Nadia Hashimi




 
FTC Disclosure: Lavish Bookshelf received this product complimentary in exchange for an honest review. The opinions in this review are solely the opinion of the author. Lavish Bookshelf was not required to provide a positive review and did not receive any further compensation. Links in this post may be an affiliate link to another website. When you purchase item through an affiliate link, Lavish Bookshelf may receive monetary compensation for the referral of the sale.

May 21, 2016

Book Review: Bridge Ladies by Betsy Lerner




Great quote:  "In part, this is a group portrait of the ladies, what they share with each other, but also what they keep to themselves. Like my mother, these women don't openly reveal their feelings. Pain is a private matter. Sometimes, watching the ladies play Bridge, I can see the girls they once were and the cards they were dealt; it's all there in their faces as they open the fan of cards before them, organizing the cards by suit, each new hand ripe with possibility, rife with disappointment." (Page 9) 




Pic credit: Google images


Book summary:   "A fifty-year-old Bridge game provides an unexpected way to cross the generational divide between a daughter and her mother. Betsy Lerner takes us on a powerfully personal literary journey, where we learn a little about Bridge and a lot about life." (Back Cover)


My thoughts:  The Bridge Ladies by Betsy Lerner is part memoir, part social study. Training her writer's eye on her mother and her Bridge gal partners, Lerner talks about bridge as a metaphor for life. 

Bridge Ladies is an enjoyable book to read from a womens' history perspective. Lerner takes the time to explain the world in which her mother and friends once lived. They were World War survivors, they saw women get their rights and watched a man walk on the moon. These women were mothers and wives first, while careers didn't seem to ever be a huge priority.

In contrast, Lerner's generation fought for abortion and birth control, managed careers and children while the disco ball twinkled overhead. In short, it's a generational gap that is wider than probably any generational gap ever recorded.

So as a slightly older lady herself, Lerner sits down with her mother and the Bridge Ladies. Lerner picks up the finer points of Bridge and discusses the 20th Century with the gals.

Bridge Ladies is an entertaining read when Lerner stays on the broader subject. A card game as a metaphor for life is intriguing and the generational gaps between the ages is fascinating. When the book turns personal and Lerner inserts her own trauma/drama, however, is when the book takes an overwhelming turn to the boring exit.

Betsy Lerner has given voice to the wives of the forgotten generation. Bridge Ladies is an interesting look at mother/daughter relationships and help "bridge" the gap of the ages. Readers who enjoy memoirs and love to look at life through the eyes of another will love Bridge Ladies by Betsy Lerner


Rating:  3.5 of 5 stars


Book Facts:
  • Pages:   320
  • Year originally published:   2016
  • Book Tour:  My review is part of a larger collection of reviews of this title. For more information, please visit TLC Book Tours.


Purchase on Amazon:  Bridge Ladies by Betsy Lerner  


 
FTC Disclosure: Lavish Bookshelf received this product complimentary in exchange for an honest review. The opinions in this review are solely the opinion of the author. Lavish Bookshelf was not required to provide a positive review and did not receive any further compensation. Links in this post may be an affiliate link to another website. When you purchase item through an affiliate link, Lavish Bookshelf may receive monetary compensation for the referral of the sale.
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