By Callie Grant
Illustranted by Jeremy Tugeau
Published by Graham Blanchard Inc.
20 pages BB

Back Cover: A child discovers how his inner self is growing in Jesus right along with the rest of him, as he lives out changes in his heart, mind, strength and soul. In the Graham Blanchard book collection, All of Me That You Can’t See is an Absorb book, which connects studies about the facts of God with a child’s inner life. Children assimilate on a personal level who God is and how they are made to be with him, trust him and love him―the life of a believer. Find out more about our Learn, Absorb and Praise books for children at

REVIEW: The cover of this board book first caught my eye. It’s fun and beautiful. The little boy in the super hero costume reminded me of my grandson. The wonderful illustrations help bring the story to life. I like that this author talks about growing up on the outside and on the inside too. She talks about ways your heart, mind, soul and strength grow along with your body.  She gives examples of each with a fun picture. Not too many books about this subject. This book helps start conversations with youngesters that is important and in a way they understand. I liked that this message is simple yet profound. This helps a child with his or her own relationship and discovery of Jesus.

I loved it. There is also more support and insight to sharing your faith and teaching your child about God at Graham Blanchard publishers site.

This book based on Mark 12: 30 
“A young child discovers that his inner self grows in Jesus right along with the rest of him.” 

I highly recommend these book.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network blog

Book Fun Magazine


The September 2015 issue of Book Fun Magazine is now LIVE
Sponsored by Rabbit Publishing #ad #cover

There is so much inside. I have a fun interview with HARRY MOON. You'll also learn about how to get a FREE copy of his new EBOOK about HALLOWEEN!!

If they ask Tell them book fun sent you!

Nora St.Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network blog
Book Fun Magazine


Near and Far
by Heidi Swanson
Published by Ten Speed Press
ISBN# 978-1607745495
336 Pages

I haven't received this book yet. But I was intrigued by the info on the back cover. "Known for combining natural foods recipes with evocative, artful photography, New York Timesbestselling author Heidi Swanson circled the globe to create this mouthwatering assortment of 120 vegetarian dishes. In this deeply personal collection drawn from her well-worn recipe journals, Heidi describes the fragrance of flatbreads hot off a Marrakech griddle, soba noodles and feather-light tempura in Tokyo, and the taste of wild-picked greens from the Puglian coast. Recipes such as Fennel Stew, Carrot & Sake Salad, Watermelon Radish Soup, Brown Butter Tortelli, and Saffron Tagine use healthy, whole foods ingredients and approachable techniques, and photographs taken in Morocco, Japan, Italy, France, and India, as well as back home in Heidi’s kitchen, reveal the places both near and far that inspire her warm, nourishing cooking."

I'll have the full review once I receive this book in the mail.

Nora St.Laurent


Irish Meadows
By Susan Anne Mason
Published by Bethany House
375 Pages

Back Cover: 1911, Long Island, New York

Faced With an Uncertain Future, Sometimes
All You Have Left Is the Courage to Dream

Brianna and Colleen O'Leary know their Irish immigrant father expects them to marry well. Recently he's put even more pressure on them, insinuating that the very future of their Long Island horse farm, Irish Meadows, rests in their ability to land prosperous husbands. Both girls, however, have different visions for their futures.

Brianna, a quiet girl with a quick mind, dreams of attending college. Vivacious Colleen, meanwhile, is happy to marry--as long as her father's choice meets her exacting standards of the ideal groom. When former stable hand Gilbert Whelan returns from business school and distant relative Rylan Montgomery visits Long Island during his seminary training, the two men quickly complicate everyone's plans.

As the farm slips ever closer to ruin, James O'Leary grows more desperate. It will take every ounce of courage for both sisters to avoid being pawns in their father's machinations and instead follow their hearts. And even if they do, will they inevitably find their dreams too distant to reach?

REVIEW: The cover of this book is beautiful and intriguing It screamed for me to pick it up and look inside. This story is set in 1911- Long Island, N.Y. Gilbert Whelan is a former – stable hand who’s unsure of his future as he returns home from Business College. He’s also unsure about his feelings for Brianna. He remembers her as a young spunky girl who shared his passion for horses, was loyal and made him laugh.

Brianna is thrilled to have Gilbert back. She wondered if he saw her as a woman now.  She needed him to help convince her father to send her to college. She yearned to continue her learn all she could. Her father thought woman should be married and have babies. Why bother with school. Brianna’s only job in her father’s eyes was to marry well.

Brianna’s older sister is Colleen O’Leary who is seriously setting out to do her father proud and marry well.  But as the farm slips closer out of James O’Leary’s ability to keep things afloat he becomes desperate to save Irish Meadows horse ranch. Marrying off his daughters seems to be a viable option and one that needs to happen soon.

Gilbert Whelan who’s trying to avoid Brianna and his growing feelings for her; is torn between his obligations to James O’Leary who is a domineering Father and has high expectations on everyone he encounters.

His wife Katherine is the peace maker, buffer in the house. She’s the glue to keeping the family together with her faith.

Rylan Montgomery is visiting while he studies to be a Priest. He’s a distant cousin who feels very distracted by Colleen O’Leary. He’s fighting his feelings. Colleen is a bit of a brat who uses her beauty to get her way in matters and loves the attention she gets.

I liked Brianna from the start with her aspirations’ for the future. She seeks an education in a time when women were not encouraged to do so and/or have an opinion – an opinion was seen as unnecessary. I grew to like Coleen as the story progressed and I watched her mature as she learned what truly is important in life. Each character struggles to be true to themselves no matter what others demand.

This is an emotional roller coaster of a read as each character struggles to trust God in their life, future, provision, and happiness. A few characters were tortured by their feelings as their hearts longed for love at the same time their minds told them,” I shouldn’t have feelings for this person” – they’d be better off with someone else. It was kind of like “I can’t see you But I have to see you.” It was predictable. The story is told from four points of views Gilbert, Brianna, Colleen and Rylan, which at times was nerve racking!

This is a debut novel and the first of three books in the Courage to Dream series. In the next book the author will be featuring the missing family member, from this novel,  Adam O’Leary. I’m sure the author will have the characters we’ve gotten to know in this novel.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
Book Fun Magazine
The Book Club Network blog


Love Without Limits
By Nic and Kanae Vujicic
Published by Waterbrook

BACK COVER: It Doesn’t Take a Perfect Person to Find a Perfect Love

 Even though he was born without arms or legs, Nick Vujicic created a “ridiculously good life.” But after dating disappointments and a failed relationship, he reached his mid-twenties worried that he would never find a woman to love him and share his life.

Then Nick met Kanae and everything changed.  But even with undeniable chemistry, they would have to navigate twists and turns worthy of a romantic comedy before becoming "one" in marriage.

 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.

Above all, Love Without Limits is an inspiring reminder that when Christ is at the center of a relationship--even with serious challenges--true love will triumph.

REVIEW: I first became aware of this author through his first book called, “Life without Limits, inspiration for a ridiculously good life. There wasn’t anything he would avoid doing. He swam, skate boarded, faced his fears and bullies. I loved his transparency and his ability to talk about the tough issues he faced.

His next book titled Unstoppable was just as powerful. The incredible powerful of faith in action. Love his zest to live life and see God at work. I was so glad he wrote the book titled Stand Strong where he talks about how he overcame bullies; because he was a bully magnet. He speaks frank and gives hope for the hurting. He’s a victim no more.

Life Without Limits, talks about a new chapter in his life. He’s now a husband and father. Nick is a native Australian who lives in Southern California with his wife and co-author of this book Kanae, and their son Kiyoshi. “He’s an evangelist, motivational speaker, author and the director of Life without limbs, which is a nonprofit organization that advances the gospel of Jesus Christ and helps alleviate suffering worldwide. He regularly speaks to large crowds on overcoming obstacles and achieving dreams…He also hosts his own daily inspirational radio program.” This man is an inspiration to us all.

Nick starts his journey talking about his hopes and dreams and disappointments in his journey in finding his soul mate. He’d love to have a family. Then he met Kanae, their courtship, preparation for their wedding and their bundle of joy.

I love his transparency and how they waited to be together after they were married. Their love story will give hope to the broken hearted and tug at your heart strings. There is a great mix of powerful and funny stories. Kanace has her pov – know she is speaking by the different font. Fun to hear from her.

Nick says, “When a friend asked Kanae if putting off sex with me until after our marriage was difficult, she replies, “Well, it sure helped that he doesn’t have any hands.”…I cracked up laughing when she said that! I love my wife so much, she tells it like it is…when Kanae and I met Rev Billy Graham after our engagement, his advice was “get married quick!” Reverend Graham understood the challenges and rewards of abstinence.”

I love their sense of humor and how they walk out their faith walk. The author gives ten tips for keeping it cool before marriage. He shares many stories, I loved their transparency. Nick says, “I never expected a television reporter to delve into my most private information on the air. But it happened during an interview when Kanae was pregnant. A female reporter in Dallas asked me during a live T.V. Interview how it was possible for us to have a child. I was more than flustered with her question. I tried to put her off by saying, “Well, most people know you don’t need arms and legs to have a child.”…that didn’t seem to deter her. So, I went for humor. “Actually, I hear that legs sometimes just get in the way! ..Believe me that put a stop to her personal questions.”

They had planned to travel the world together the first year of marriage. They talked about 2013 Worldwide tour of 20 countries. Nick was excited to have Kanae along for the adventure. But 3 months in this married couple learned they were pregnant and adjustments to their dreams needed to be made. This couple talks about five rookie tips to working at Marriage. There are many great color pictures from their wedding and other fun photos of them skydiving and sailing.

I’ve watched youtube videos of Nick swimming, skate boarding and speaking. He’s an inspiration. I’m thrilled by this new chapter in his life. He and his family are an encouragement to all.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network blog

Book Fun Magazine


A Widow’s Journey
Reflections on Walking Alone
By Gayle Roper
Published by Harvest House Publishers
ISBN# 978-0-7369-5958-2
142 Pages

Back Cover: Have you recently lost your husband? Are there days when you feel so terribly alone--and that no one else could possibly understand?

Author Gayle Roper understands. As a recent widow herself, Gayle writes:
So who am I now that there's only one place at the pillow with a head dent, one damp towel after a shower. There's only one toothbrush in the holder. The seat is never left up anymore.

I can still write Mrs. in front of my name, but I'm no longer in a marriage relationship. You need two people for a marriage and there's only me.

Is there only you? Then join Gayle as she draws on her emotions during the loss of her beloved husband, Chuck, and offers you a compassionate devotional to encourage you through your darkest days. Gayle knows a widow's pain is deep. But she also knows God's love is deeper still. And it's in His love you'll find your deepest comfort.

REVIEW: This author gives readers an intimate look at the grieving process and her journey to wholeness. She takes readers with her as she learns to live life without her husband of almost 50 years. She says, “It’s the aimlessness that I find most difficult. I like purpose and plan. I don’t mind if the plan goes awry. I’m willing to adapt. Life is one long lesson in adapting.”…And being a widow is the biggest lesson of all, a lesson forced on me by circumstances I didn’t plan and would never choose. And I don’t want to adapt. I want life back as it was…I know that my life can still have value, that I can still do and be – when I can figure out what to do and who to be…”…”Life moves on whether we’re ready or not.”

Gayle ran into a ninety year old friend that told her something she had learned in her journey, “I’ve decided I’ll never be happy the same way again, but I have learned to be content.”

Gayle realizes that grief has to run its course, bills need to be paid and decisions need to be made.: ,,,”Certainly life still has good moments, the sun still shines, and we find things to laugh at…But under it all is that ache like the pain of a phantom limb.”

I appreciate Gayle sharing this journey. I know that it will give me an insight into dealing with someone who has lost a loved one. Instead of avoiding the person because I don’t know what to do or say; this author has talked about the changes in her life and what that felt like. This will help to be there for someone else.

I appreciated her insight into her life instantly changing from a couple to a single.  It’s a process to go through to establish a “new” normal. She shares things I didn’t think about.

This book is helpful for those who are grieving and for the friends and family members of the one in the grieving process. This is a heart-felt short helpful read.

I liked the note from Gayle in the back of the book, she says, “4 years out – time is the framework that allows us to see change. “…”I hope you were able to say, “Yes! That’s exactly how I feel. I’m not crazy, and I’m not alone!”

“Know you are special to me and I pray for you even though I may not know your name.” Colossians 1:9-10.

I highly recommend this book for people in the grieving process and for loved ones trying to understand what they are dealing with as their life has changed and will continue to change! I had the privilege of meeting this author the ICRS conference in Orlando Florida and watching her win an award for this book. I was honored to be at the conference.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network blog

Book Fun Magazine


The Memory Weaver
By Jane Kirkpatrick
Published by Revell
352 Pages

BACK COVER: Eliza Spalding Warren was just a child when she was taken hostage by the Cayuse Indians during a massacre in 1847. Now the young mother of two children, Eliza faces a different kind of dislocation; her impulsive husband wants them to make a new start in another territory, which will mean leaving her beloved home and her departed mother's grave--and returning to the land of her captivity. Eliza longs to know how her mother, an early missionary to the Nez Perce Indians, dealt with the challenges of life with a sometimes difficult husband and with her daughter's captivity.

When Eliza is finally given her mother's diary, she is stunned to find that her own memories are not necessarily the whole story of what happened. Can she lay the dark past to rest and move on? Or will her childhood memories always hold her hostage?

Based on true events, The Memory Weaver is New York Times bestselling author Jane Kirkpatrick's latest literary journey into the past, where threads of western landscapes, family, and faith weave a tapestry of hope inside every pioneering woman's heart. Readers will find themselves swept up in this emotional story of the memories that entangle us and the healing that awaits us when we bravely unravel the threads of the past.

REVIEW:  I read from the back of the book in author notes first. I also found the author interview with Jane Kirkpatrick informative. They helped to bring a depth and clarity to this true story I wouldn’t have otherwise. The author gives a glimpse into this tragedy from a different angle than other writers.

This author wanted to explore the daughter’s life and make it the focal point of this novel. Jane says, “There had never been an exploration of Elisa the child as an interpreter during the Whitman tragedy.” …”Novels are meant to move people, to bring emotion to the surface and enable us to see our lives in new ways. To paraphrase French writer Marcel Proust, “The real journey of discovery is not in seeking new landscape but in seeing with new eyes. I wanted to show Eliza’s journey toward seeing with new eyes.”…”A novel allows one to speculate about the why and how one felt regarding an incident…”

I had never heard of the Whitman tragedy. I learned about this event up-close and personal. The author is brilliant at weaving the mother’s diary entries and the daughter’s first person POV to create a heart-felt, compelling and fascinating way to learn about this historical event. This is a journey filled with challenges, survivors and a sense of hope. I liked how the author explores our memories in this tragic event. She says, “…What we remember isn’t always the way it actually, factually was and that new stories can transform our wounds and old shames, weave new memories that nourish.”

I found this statement and subject illuminating. I hadn’t thought of this before. This author does a great job of revealing a dark past and give renewed hope for a bright future in this novel. I love the deep faith that is portrayed through her characters, who in spite of the unbearable circumstances they are in, find peace. If you like historicals you’ll love this story.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
Book Fun Magazine
The Book Club Network blog


The Amazing Adventures of Harry Moon 
– Wand-Paper- Scissors
By Mark Andrew Poe Illustrated by Christina Weldman
Published by: Rabbit Publications
ISBN# 978-1943785001
212 Pages

Back Cover: Harry Moon is up to his eyeballs in magic in the small town of Sleepy Hollow. His arch enemy, Titus Kligore, has eyes on winning the Annual Scary Talent Show. Harry has a tough job ahead if he is going to steal the crown. He takes a chance on a magical rabbit who introduces him to the deep magic. Harry decides that the best way forward is to DO NO EVIL and the struggle to defeat Titus while winning the affection of the love of his life goes epic.

REVIEW:  I like how Harry and his family were open with one another. They discuss all kinds of topics like “power”, “Power? Harry’s mom says. “The only “True Power comes from heaven above,” his mom, shakes her head and looks at Harry.

“Mom, you know that, and I know that. Elvis Gold doesn’t have real power. He is an illusionist. He is an expert at the sleight of hand.”….”He’s my hero.”

“Hero? Elvis Gold. The only hero you need is the good God above, Harry…”She left his room like she always did. Shaking her head. Of course, Mary loved Harry and likewise, Harry loved his Mom. They simply frustrated one another at times.”

I liked how the author talks about this aspect of family relationships and how family works. This is a coming of age story I enjoyed. Harry starts to look at the world around him with new eyes as he prepares to participate in the talent show. Harry has a close encounter of the magical kind inside the magic store. He talks about magic with his mom. She tells him to be careful magic could be a, “Darkness to turn young heads away from the truth..”…”Don’t you know that nothing is what it seems?”

I liked Harry and how he can talk to his parents about anything including the different kinds of magic. He has some fun adventures. I look forward to reading more. The town he lives in has been transformed to be “Spooky Town” in order to attract more tourists to their “Halloween-Sleep Hollow-“ The Garden tour has become “Spooky Tours”, The Harvest Hayrides are not “Haunted Hayrides”; Failing toy store is now Ghost Busters; They even renamed the street to Magic Row – Where spells, incantations and magic tricks are purchased. Harry loves magic. Harry wonders, “Was all magic an illusion? Were all the stories, video games and movies phony? Or was magic true? Mom tolerated magic. But she also knew that it was his destiny.”

Harry begins to listen to the rabbit the old man in the magic store gave him. He talks to Harry about many things like, “Forgiveness, loving neighbors as self-how to handle bullies, disappointments – Love and respect – Best way to get rid of an enemy is to make him your friend.” Harry struggles with these topics and wants to do the right thing.

The author states, “I was never the most popular kids in school. I spent a lot of my time in a barn when I was in middle school taking care of my rabbits. I think I was also a little bit on the outside. Maybe that’s why I relate to Harry so much. He has what it takes to stand up for what is right and isn’t afraid to do the hard thing, even as an outside. That’s pretty cool.”

“In life, we need a real friend like rabbit. There is a lot of value in knowing someone who is wise, who can help you through the tough times. That’s the point, I think, of these amazing adventures – life is better when you’ve got a friend who can help point the way..”…”Hero defined by a love for a magic where love and ‘Do No Evil’ live.”

Harry’s adventures remind me of Diary of a Wimpy kid except this story has a faith-based message. It opens up dialogue between parents and children that is important as they giggle and admire Harry has he faces hard things in school and life. That’s a win-win for everyone. I look forward to reading the next installment. Can’t wait to share this to my grandson.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network blog
Book Fun Magazine


By Eileen Spinelli
Illustrated by Archie Preston
Published by ZonderKidz
29 Pages HB

REVIEW: I had read an enjoyed another book by this author titled, “Nora’s Ark,” which made me want to read another book by them. This book is illustrated by Archie Preston who captures readers’ attention and brings the story to life in a unique way.

This book is fun to read with little ones as they enjoy the illustrations and message inside. The author talks about all that we have to be thankful for. The pictures show two children role playing different professions as they look at each and see what they might be thankful for.

This author helps children and parents think about all the different people that make up their community and look at family members in a new light. There is much to be thankful for. This book not only creates an opportunity for parents and children to talk about the subject of what to be thankful for but it also helps them look at all the people in their world and community in a different way. t helps the reader see the lives they touch and those they are grateful for.

This is a beautifully illustrated story that is fun to look at and read. I can see this being a family favorite!

Back Cover: Thankful, by bestselling and award-winning children’s author Eileen Spinelli, combines charming rhymes and whimsical illustrations to convey the importance of being thankful for everyday blessings. Like the gardener thankful for every green sprout, and the fireman, for putting the fire out, readers are encouraged to be thankful for the many blessings they find in their lives. Spinelli exhibits her endearing storytelling with this engaging poem, reminding children how blessed and special they are. Meant to be read aloud, this heartwarming picture book will be a treasured keepsake for parents and children alike.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Book Look for Bloggers site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network blog
Book Fun Magazine


By P.J. Lions
Illustrated by Tim Warnes
Published by Zondervan Kids
ISBN# 978-0310748120
16 Pages BB

REVIEW: Before little bear springs out of bed he thanks the Lord for everything, for a beautiful day. He observes his Mom and Dad. He’s thankful for what they do.

Then he goes outside. There is so much to experience there. There are many things to be grateful for, flowers other animals and friends. The last page brings it all together for the reader. It’s fun to read. The Illustrations make you grin from ear to ear and feel good inside.

The illustrator brings the written word to life in a special way. I found myself smiling all the way through this board book. You’ll enjoy reading this book to young ones and watching their faces as you read. This book has rhythm. The author rhymes the words in a sing song way that’s catchy! The children you read this to will soon catch onto this book and be reading it by themselves.

Here’s a peek at the rhyme, “Brightly out of bed you spring. Thank you, Lord, for everything.”

Back Cover: A comfortable and relaxing rhyme tells the story of God’s great blessings in this padded cover board book. P.J. Lyons’ engaging text and Tim Warnes’ playful illustrations remind readers how much they have to be thankful for.

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the Book Look for Bloggers site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St.Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
The Book Club Network Blog
Book Fun Magazine 


The Significant Life
By George M. Weaver
Published by PC Crosslink Publishing
ISBN# 978-1-936-61-3
283 Pages

REVIEW: My husband and I recently met attorney George Weaver in the Atlanta area. We saw firsthand how passionate he was about the message in his debut non-fiction book. After hearing him speak I was excited to read about significance. I was pleasantly surprised by this engaging, powerful and moving message. It was amazing to learn about the lengths humans will go to in order to be recognized. It’s mind boggling.

The subtitle to the book is “overcoming your fear of being unnoticed and forgotten. On the flipside this author shows readers how the Christian faith fills the void in us and satisfies the longing in our soul.”

“The author breaks down his book in three parts the first section titled The Apparent Insignifance of the Individual person. Section two Efforts at Significance.
Section three the consequences of the Significance of the Individual person. …Free to be humble, forgive and love others, free to enjoy the purposes of life.”

The author states …”Each of us feels deeply that there is a singular importance to his or her existence that must not be lost”

I liked the research this author has done and his sources; one of them is Sociologist Charles Derber, he states, “Who has recognized that the competition for attention is one of the key contests of social life.”…this “Attention plays a role in social interaction as does money in the economy, people hunger for it and suffer terribly from its deprivation.”

I also liked the scriptures references throughout this book talking about God and how valuable we are to Him. For example; Exodus 17:7 “Our significance flows from the character and attributes of God.”

The author includes questions for reflection at the end of each chapter. There are between 5 and 12 questions per chapter. This book can be used in a couple of different ways. One for personal use in your devotional time. This makes for a good quite time and/or a group study. This could be a good book to do in your book club as well. The questions would work well in that setting too.

This is a must read. I highly recommend this encouraging read. It had me look at significance in a whole new light. This book’s a keeper and this author is one to watch!!

Disclosure of Material Connection: #AD Sponsor
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”

Nora St Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
Book Fun Magazine

The Book Club Network Blog


ABOUT AUTHOR: Laura Frantz is an award-winning author who is passionate about all things historical, particularly the 18th-century, and writes her manuscripts in longhand first. Her stories often incorporate Scottish themes that reflect her family heritage. She is a direct descendant of George Hume, Wedderburn Castle, Berwickshire, Scotland, who was exiled to the American colonies for his role in the Jacobite Rebellion of 1715, settled in Virginia, and is credited with teaching George Washington surveying in the years 1748-1750. Her family resides in Kentucky and Virginia.
According to Publishers Weekly, "Frantz has done her historical homework." With her signature attention to historical detail and emotional depth, she is represented by Janet Kobobel Grant, Literary Agent & Founder, Books & Such Literary Agency of Santa Rosa, California.
Readers can find her at

What was your favorite scene in The Mistress of Tall Acres? Which was the most fun to write? Which was the hardest to write? Why?

Laura: My favorite scene was when Seamus proposes to Sophie and rocks her world. That was the most fun to write. The hardest scene was when Sophie leaves Tall Acre and Lily Cate as both mistress and mother.

Nora: Your favorite scene was so much fun to imagine and read. You brought both of these characters to life in a believable way my heart rejoiced and I was teary eyed!

What made you put George Washington into this story? I liked the fact that he actually had some dialogue. Fun! What was an interesting fact you learned about George Washington what you didn’t know before your research into this time period?

Laura: I’m starting to include more historical figures in my books like Washington and 
Daniel Boone. As for George, I learned he had a terrible temper which he usually managed to rein in. It was something he struggled with his entire life which somehow makes him more human. How he managed a rag-tag army and controlled himself is amazing!

Nora: I liked that you brought George Washington into the story. It was a fun surprise.

I LOVED your characters. They were believable. I cared about them deeply. My heart went out to Seamus and his situation with his wife not being able to have more children. He leaves his wife soon after the birth of their daughter and heads back to the battle field. I was pretty surprised at what he had to go through when he got back. Did that happen often to men at war?

Laura: Love this question, Nora. Americans today have little inkling just what men like Seamus and his fellow Patriots reaped from their fight for liberty. Many lost their lives, their homes, their fortunes, their families. Families were often split due to siding with the British while others went rogue and declared themselves independent. To fight for American rights back then meant you were a traitor and the penalty was death.

Nora: It's a heart breaker!

I adored Seamus’s daughter Lily Cate. I could see how Sophie lost her heart to this young one. Their first meeting was to have a tea party. Did you have tea parties growing up? With your children? What do/did you love about them? 

Laura: I do love tea parties! When I was a young girl my grandmother used to do as Sophie’s mother did by hosting a tea party and going barefoot to declare the start of spring and fall. Lily Cate was probably my favorite character in the book though I loved them all. Since I only have boys and no daughters, she really came to life for me.

Nora: Beautiful dishes Laura. Thanks for sharing! Lily Cate was one of my favorites too!

In growing up, what were three important values you learned that stuck with you and shaped your life?

Laura: Work hard. Be kind. Stay close to Christ.

Nora: Good values for sure!

What three things are you most thankful for in life?

Laura: My Lord and Savior foremost. My husband, sons, and family. My log cabin in Kentucky.

Nora: I best the view is beautiful from your house!

What keeps you sane in the middle of craziness? Hope in the middle of stress and life’s storms?

Laura: As I grow older, the only thing I can rely on amidst life’s many changes is the Lord who is always the same, always near, always loving, always walking with me through every season of life. I tend to be a bit melancholy at times as I feel things very deeply. Guess I have an artistic temperament. I can honestly say the Lord is my rock, my refuge and stronghold. Nothing and no-one else compares.

Nora: Amen! Amen!

Out of all the sounds in the world which are your favorite?

Laura: The wind. There’s always usually a breeze or wind on my cabin porch, rustling the leaves of the many trees around us. I think of how the Holy Spirit is described as coming in the wind. It’s a beautiful, mysterious sound. You can’t see it, you can only feel and hear it. Chimes in the wind is another beautiful sound.

Nora: THANKS for sharing this pictures. It's lovely. I can see why you love it!

You are shipwrecked on an uninhabited tropical island with a group of Christians – all friends and relatives of yours. You all have to work as a team to survive. Many roles have to be filled. Which role would you think you’d play?

Laura: Encourager. People tell me I’m able to give a kind word or help someone when they need it. I never realize I am doing this. But I hope it’s true!

Nora: I'm sure it is! You must be a natural! Grin!

A friend of yours has a time machine and they will let you use it for a while. Where would you go and what would you do?

Laura: I would LOVE to return to the 18th-century and witness or be a part of the American Revolution when our country gained independence. It was a passionate, tumultuous time and so many of my favorite historical figures lived then like Daniel Boone and George and Martha Washington, George Rogers Clark and the brave women of the frontier.

Nora: That would be an interesting time for sure!

What three things would you rather not live without (besides your family)?

Laura: Coffee. Chocolate. Chicken and Dumplings.

Nora: Oh, Yeah! It's been a while since I've enjoyed Chicken and Dumplings. Yummy! Grin! 

What is a special quality, talent and/or event you have experienced that would surprise people? Please explain.

Laura: I attended school in a British manor house/castle in college, something that fueled my imagination like nothing else. The experience was truly God given and delightful! I keep thinking one day I’ll write a book about it!

Nora: This is a beautiful desk. I can see how your schooling in a British mannor house/castle fueled your imagination. I loved this story, the characters and the inner and outer struggles they dealt with. Some if it was heart wrenching! This was a powerful, memorable and fun story! I couldn't put it down!

So thankful for our time together at your wonderful site! Always a pleasure and privilege to talk books! Thank you for taking time for me ~ and happy reading!

I’m thrilled about the Giveaway Opportunity at TBCN started the 20th of SEPTEMBER at LAST DAY to enter SEPT 30th.

Looking forward to it to reading the participation between you and readers! It’s always so much fun! Everyone has to be a member of TBCN in order to participate. It’s Free and easy. Participate as your schedule allows.


Nora :o)

Nora St.Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins 
The Book Club Network Blog  
Book Fun Magazine   

Interview Sponsored by: Revell Publishers


"Lively, inventive, authentic, and wise" are a few of the words used to describe Jane's presentations around the world from Sorrento, Italy to Moro, Oregon.  Whether part of a book signing or a fundraiser for various museums and causes close to Jane's heart, retreats or commencement addresses, Jane engages audiences to consider the power of their own stories.  "Until we find the meaning of the stories of our lives we're destined to wander in the wilderness even though we're in the Promised Land," she notes.  With humor she helps groups find the insights that bring wisdom and joy to their lives. 

Blending her mental health background with years working on an Oregon Indian reservation with twenty-six years carving a life on a remote ranch, Jane finds a way for participants to experience the lessons of her historical characters and allow them to step from one generation to our own to bring healing and hope through the power of the written and spoken word.

Jane says,"If you'd like more information about me, please come visit my website at and click on my blog. My dog also has a blog and you can find out what it's like to be Bodacious Bo, too. A monthly newsletter called Story Sparks is my way of sharing books about authors I enjoy as well as commenting on life and love. You'll find out more about me than you probably ever wanted to know!"

In your research for The Memory Weaver did you come across any surprised you? Made you look at the situation differently?

I had heard about this tragedy since first coming to Oregon many years ago. It changed the way the territory saw itself, changed relationships between settlers and Indian people. What I had not known was that Eliza, who was 10 at the time of the tragedy, was the only one who knew the language of the captors and I thought that would have been a great weight for a 10 year old to carry for 47 days as a hostage after witnessing so many deaths. She had the weight of hoping she expressed what her captors wanted and also feeling responsible for her fellow captives.

What was your favorite scene in The Memory Weaver?

My favorite scene is when Eliza Spalding Warren goes back to the mission where she grew up and she is wrapped again in the arms of the people she had held so dear. Forgiving others – and ourselves – is always very moving for me.

Which was the most fun to write? Any of the scenes with Rachel, the step-mom in them! She was quite a kick from all I could find out about her and a terrible cook so that fit with my own, ah, limited kitchen skills.

Which was the hardest to write? The hardest were the scenes where Eliza as a young mother “disappears” to those traumatic times. Why? Because I didn’t want to dwell on the tragedy but needed to let the reader see why her adult life was so troubled by a past memory. I also didn’t want to leave her there for long and I didn’t want her to mess up her present life because an old memory held her hostage. I felt very protective of her.

Desk Picture -- occasionally my office is neat and tidy. My husband made the desk for me 30 years ago. Bo and Caesar hang out with me when I write.
I liked the way you set up the novel. One story line you told through letters and diary entries; the other you wrote in first person? What made you mix it up like that? It did make the story more intimate.

I’m glad you liked that! It made my life a little more complicated because I had the memories of Eliza, her mother, her father and how they wove together to contend with. But I wanted a way to engage readers with the experiences of those who were not present at the tragedy but whose lives changed dramatically because of it. And I knew that Eliza, the mother, dying when her daughter was young, left a huge hole in Eliza’s life. I wanted her to “have memories” of her mother as a young wife and mother and that could only happen with a diary left behind.

How did you feel about the Eliza being forced by her father to attend the murder trial of the Indians accused of the crimes at Waiilatpu 1847?

 That was so interesting to me and it was another detail I hadn’t been aware of until I started researching. I think her father felt that since she had been the interpreter that she’d be the perfect witness. I think he was clueless about how re-visiting the horror would affect her, a then twelve-year old child.

Why do you think he did this? I think he wanted His memories to be the ones people accepted as fact and Eliza would be the person who would authenticate that. But she didn’t testify and there was a note that her father commented that “she spoke too kindly about the Indians.” That also told me about her own ambivalence as a captive and affirmed what often happens in the Stockholm Syndrome, where captives become attached to their captors in unexpected ways because they are so dependent upon them for survival.

I’d never heard about this family and their tragedy. When did you first become aware of this and how did it affect your life?
Whitman Mission -- This is the site of the Whitman tragedy that affected the Spalding family and so many others, the subject of The Memory Weaver.

While researching about Marie Dorion, an Indian woman who came west with 60 men as part of the Astoria expedition, the first large expedition west after Lewis and Clark returned, I came across this “fact” that the first books printed west of the Rocky Mountains were a Nez Perce primer and the second book was a Nez Perce translation of the book of Matthew. Eliza Spalding was said to have been the linguist who transcribed those books and they were printed on a printing press sent from a mission in Hawaii to the Spalding mission in 1838. I wanted to know a little more about the Spaldings and this historical fact of publishing. We visited the Nez Perce National Park in Lapwai, ID and then visited the Whitman Historic Site where the tragedy happened and the event that closed all the missions in the West at that time. I never forgot the feelings I had at both those sites. Great love and peacefulness at the Spalding Mission site. (I had the same feeling last Sunday afternoon when I was there to speak at the Nez Perce National Park); and a feeling of great loss at the Whitman site. When I realized these families were intertwined I wanted to explore it further, especially what happened afterwards.  Some stories never let us go.

I read in an interview that you and your husband own a small plane. What have you loved about traveling in this small plane? Any things you’ve experienced in the plane you would have otherwise experienced?
my dear husband and me at the dedication of Marie Dorion marker, a courageous woman of the 19th century. It was researching her story that led me to The Memory Weaver.
It’s been my experience in my own life and as a therapist that our memories are often not the way something really happened. If we witness a tragic event or if something terrible happens, we often wish we could go back and do something different that might have changed the outcome but that’s often based on faulty expectations or even the facts of the event. I think that’s a part of the human condition, to “want to do better.” But when we are in the midst of extreme stress (which can be different for different people) our systems shut down and we go on survival mode.

Our fingers and toes get cold and don’t work as well because all the blood flow goes to our head to try to keep us thinking and acting to protect. Some of us can react to save both ourselves and others; and some of us are immobilized. Both are normal responses but those of us who are immobilized often later judge ourselves harshly. As for both Eliza’s dealing with survivor guilt, I think the daughter’s life is evidence of that, how she judged herself as not having done all she could for the hostages, especially Lorinda Bewely and the way her need for control played out in her adult life. I felt the mother also faced great trauma as her sister missionary, Narcissa Whitman, had lost her child to a drowning and then Narcissa and her husband had been murdered, along with so many others.

Eliza still had her daughter and family and a tribe that had protected them. I suspect she felt guilt at not being able to care for some of the hostages upon their return. And I think her very illness was related to the conflict she must have had between trusting in a loving God and at the same time having to trust that the tragedy and all that followed (loss of the mission, Henry’s volatile behavior, her illness, Eliza’s PTSD, etc) was also in God’s hands.

Those involved with treating PTSD also work to keep the victims in the present moment, and bring memories here rather than having the people disappear into the tragedy. In the present, others can walk beside them and help them create new stories, new memories that can nourish and transform. I saw Timothy doing that for Eliza; and Eliza the mom’s brother in many ways, helping her through a difficult time.

In growing up, what were three important values you learned that stuck with you and shaped your life?
Jane says titled photo"Child Alive"I hope it's how I will always see life- happy 6 yr old

1)“Caring for others is a form of worship. Caring for the least of these, is a living prayer.” My mother was a nurse; my dad a farmer who served on many community projects and boards. When I was 16, I spent two weeks in Chicago working and living in an inner city with our church youth group. His allowing me to go severed a relationship he’d had with a friend whom he had not known was racist.

2)  ”Give your employer a good days work for your wages”(my father’s advice that probably added to my overachiever tendency!) and all work is worthy, no one is better than or less than.

3) “If you do your best, that’s all that matters; not the outcome.” 
That gave me permission to risk and fail and start again.

There are so many types of weather which is your favorite? Which to you try to avoid? 
Neighborhood mailboxes - this one winter I could have done without! So looking forward to the sandy beaches after this one!

My favorite weather is warm, sunny, on a sandy beach. My husband and I try to go to Cabo San Jose every January for a few weeks to get away from….snow, slush, tire chains, scraping windows of ice; cold!

Some of my best life-lessons have been learned in the harsher winter weather, though: driving through snow drifts, praying I’d get home safely; having to decide whether to walk down an icy hill a mile or more or turn around and drive back 7 miles to the nearest neighbor on that same icy road. Still, time on the beach, reading, drinking iced tea and chatting with my husband of 39 years is one of the best weather memories I have!

Have you seen any good movies lately and/or read a book you just couldn’t stop thinking about? Please share!

 All the Light You Cannot See was for me an amazing book. I tried to tell my husband why I was crying or why I stayed up until 3:00am to read it and I really struggled through my tears. It’s about the futility of war, yes, but more, about the power of the human spirit to rise above the darkness, to “do the right thing” even in a time of great challenge or turmoil. It’s about miracles that still happen. I believed this story, I imagined it was true even though it was fiction. It touched my heart. I’ll read it again soon. As for movies: I confess we don’t see many movies.

 For 30 years we lived 50 miles from the nearest theater and even though we have television, there’s something about seeing a film on the big screen that makes it more memorable to me. I’d say the last “big screen” film I thought was brilliantly written and captured the power of the human spirit to give and to receive was The King’s Speech.

What is a special quality, talent and/or event you have experienced that would surprise people?
Bo in the Car -- my dog does love to go with me to book events. Here we're unloading for a book fair. He looks a bit forlorn, doesn't he?

 I’m a private pilot. But right now, I’m also afraid of flying! Please explain. I once thought I should take one of those classes for people afraid of flying but thought if the other students found out I was a pilot they might lynch me! It’s because I had an accident while learning to fly and then I had to work through a great deal of “bad memory” to gain enough confidence to fly again and get my license. A year later, when I had 100 hours in, my husband and I were in our small plane with friends (she was 7.5 months pregnant) and we hit a clear air wind shear and crashed missing three homes on the ground, and electrical wires etc. We all survived. The pregnant mom has no memory of the accident! Isn’t that great! Memory is really a form of protection. She went into labor but they were able to stop it and she delivered full term one of the happiest births of my experience! Her husband had no injuries. My husband had a broken hip, two broken ankles, sprained wrists and many cuts to his face etc. I shattered my right foot and left arm and we had months of healing with pins to hold my arm and foot together. So I have not piloted again though I have been on commercial airliners since then, just not in a small plane. One day I’ll do that…but for now, I’ll let someone else pilot! And we remain the closest of friends with those who shared the trauma.

If you had all the time in the world (and just as much money); to do anything you wanted, what would you do?
This Batwa woman of Burundi is holding her identity card. I love how happy she looks. Because of the work of First Presbyterian Church of Bend and African Road, we were able to purchase identity cards for 600 + adults, acquire birth certificates for their children and now these people can work, they can marry, their children can access health care, etc. These are some of the people that if I had all the money and time (a question asked by TBCN) I'd spend my efforts making their lives better through developing a Story Center for indigenous people to be remembered and to transform their memories into hopeful futures.
I’d go back to Burundi and work with the Batwa people there, an indigenous people very marginalized and at risk of extinction. And then I’d develop a Story Center for indigenous people around the world, working with people on the reservations, reserves, urban centers, to find ways for Indian people to tell their stories through music, art, drama, dance, and writing their stories and for those stories to be remembered. Stories heal us and for many indigenous people, there is a cultural trauma that is in the memory. I’d love for story (as in parables, as well) to be incorporated into the lives of those who faced and continue to face marginalization.

If you could interview or hang out with someone for 48 hours who would you pick and why?

Ok, I’m assuming living people, right? So, Anne Lamott. She’s a public woman, writer of faith who has found a way to both challenge, be respectful of and entertain people. She’s well-read and quick and direct while allowing herself to be vulnerable which takes us as readers toward our own vulnerability. And I just bet she’d be a lot of fun. I think we all learn best when we feel safe, respected and have fun and she suggests to me that she’s amazingly adept at all three.

JANE, ANY FINAL COMMENTS FOR READERS? I have the best readers in the world! You write amazing things to me and you share stories of how my stories have empowered you and how you’ve been changing the world, one word at a time. I feel honored to be a part of your busy lives. The words “to read” come from a Norse word that translates as “to unveil a mystery.” I think when we read, we’re unveiling the mystery of the author but also of ourselves. E.L. Forester once wrote “give me me in a story and you’ll have a reader for life.” I hope I give you a bit of yourselves, your courage and compassion and I hope that way I’ll have you as readers for life. Thank you, dear reader, for making room in your heart for all the stories, mine included. 

Thanks for stopping by and helping us get to know you and your books. Thank you for the pictures and for sharing your heart and stories with us.

I’m thrilled about the Giveaway Opportunity at TBCN starting the 20th of SEPT at Looking forward reading the participation between you and readers! It’s always so much fun! 

REMINDER - Everyone has to be a member of TBCN in order to participate. It’s Free and easy. Participate as your schedule allows. The last day to enter this drawing is the last day of the month.

Nora :o)

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
Book Fun Magazine
The Book Club Network Blog

Interview Sponsored by: Revell Publishers