Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Love Finds You in Humble Texas & Double Minds

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On Monday Jesse helped Doogie fill out his FAFSA application. It helps determine how much aid he will receive to pay for college. The results look good, he should graduate with very little debt if he works full time during the summers and part time during the year. I also signed up online for us to visit his college at the next visitor's day in April. I've known for over a year that Doogie wanted to attend UW-Superior and that it was quite a distance away, but last night Jesse pulled out a map of the state to plan out the trip and how long it would take us to get there. Superior is just about as far away from here that Doogie can go and still stay in Wisconsin. My heart plummeted when I traced the distance from home to what will be his new home. I know he's excited to go, and I'm happy that he got into the college he wanted and that his future as a man on his own is about to start. But I can't help but feel a little piece of my heart break away. It's supposed to be absolutely beautiful up there, and I've always wanted to see the Apostle Islands. That's the stuff I'm going to have to hold on to in the coming months, and I've already started praying about it. Praying for strength and peace of mind for me and success and wisdom for him.

Love Finds You in Humble Texas by Anita Higman is an almost too perfect romance. Trudie Abernathy is finally starting to come out of her self-imposed shell more than ten years after her mother's death. To help, her sister Lane sets her up on a blind date with financial consultant Mason Williamson, but when Lane falls for Mason herself, Trudie forces herself to step aside and deny the growing feelings of her own heart. Trudie and Mason's romance is incredibly sweet and perfect and the ending is never in doubt, even though she does her best to step aside for Lane. I would love to live in Humble, Texas, because everyone there is kind and good, and there's very little conflict. It's an enjoyable, light read with a message of faith and love.

Double Minds by Terri Blackstock is a fast paced thriller in the vein of Tami Hoag or Catherine Coulter. Parker James is a successful songwriter but a struggling singer. She's found success writing songs for her best friend and Christian recording artist Selene, but she hasn't been able to translate that success into breaking into the business herself. When the receptionist at the recording studio where Parker works is shot to death, Parker at first thinks that she was the intended victim. But as her brother Gibson, a police detective, works on the case, he discovers a twisted case of plagiarism, theft, and Parker is soon being stalked. Blackstock keeps the adrenaline level high throughout the story with snappy dialogue and realistic family relationships. While the real murderer is fairly obvious early on, Blackstock does a great job of keeping the reader guessing as to the motive and how it will end. I was a bit surprised at the ending. At first I was a bit let down, but looking back, I admire the author for not taking the easy way out and letting the book end unrealistically. I hope this isn't the last we see of the James family.

The winner of the pair of David Gregory books was Chris Weyer. Congrats Chris! I'm starting another book contest today! I'm giving away Tricia Goyer's new hardcover Every Sunrise about the Stevenson family in Nebraska. It's the seventh in the series from Guideposts magazine, but you don't need to have read the previous books to jump right into this book. To enter, just drop me an email before 10 pm Thursday March 5th. I'll announce the winner and post my review here on Friday. Good luck!