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Book Reviews: Moms’ Night Out by Tricia Goyer & Moms’ Night Out and Other Things I Miss by Kerri Pomarolli

Posted by Julie on May 22, 2014 in About Me, Book Review, encouragement, God's Word, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons |

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Book Description:

Moms’ Night Out is a novelization of the hilarious family comedy that celebrates real family life—where everything can go wrong and still turn out all right.
 
All Allyson and her friends want is a peaceful, grown-up evening of dinner and conversation . . . a long-needed moms’ night out. But in order to enjoy high heels, adult conversation and food not served in a bag, they need their husbands to watch the kids for a few hours—what could go wrong?
 
Chronicling one night out gone awry, three harried moms, their husbands, a sister-in-law with a misplaced baby, a tattoo parlor owner, a motorcycle gang, and a bewildered cabbie all learn to embrace the beautiful mess called parenting. This book spotlights the unfulfilled expectations and serial self-doubts many moms feel . . . then reassures us that the key is raising kids in a loving home. Mom’s Night Out is an endearing, true-to-life comedy.
 
The MOMS’ NIGHT OUT film features Sarah Drew (Grey’s Anatomy), Sean Astin (THE LORD OF THE RINGS), Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond, The Middle), Alex Kendrick (COURAGEOUS), Robert Amaya (COURAGEOUS), Andrea Logan White (REVELATION ROAD), Kevin Downes (COURAGEOUS), and platinum-selling country recording artist Trace Adkins (THE LINCOLN LAWYER).

My hat’s perpetually off to Tricia Goyer. I know enough about her to know she’s raised children who are grown, is a grandmother, and then turned around and adopted three more children who are under the age of 5. To put Moms’ Night Out in book form, she had to watch the movie. Again and again and again.

I don’t know how many times it took, but I believe Tricia captured the movie. Although I’ve yet to see it, I saw the trailer after I finished and it was amazing how well the book explores the characters and hilarious events that take place on screen. More than that, the characters have depth.

It would be easy and perhaps tempting to make the male characters one dimensional because usually that’s what happens to the wife characters in movies. But Sean, Marco, Kevin and Bones have heart and important parts to the story. Allyson, Izzy, Bridget, and Sondra all have things I can relate to. And threaded together is one disaster after another.

This was a very quick read. I highly recommend you find a copy of Moms’ Night Out.

But wait!

That’s not all.

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Kerri Pomarolli is a Christian comedian who has a great reputation in Hollywood. She wrote a devotional called Moms’ Night Out and Other Things I Miss and this was a fun read that really soothes the soul. Kerri writes all things mommy, and they are real, but she gives even the worst disasters a smile, and hope.

This is as enjoyable as Moms’ Night Out.

Book Description:

As a Mom, couldn’t you use a good laugh? 

Inspired by the endearing, true-to-life movie MOMS’ NIGHT OUT, comedian Kerri Pomarolli has created this light, yet inspiring devotional that will definitely make you laugh, but will also help you discover that indeed you are not alone, and that God’s gracious provision of love and faithfulness is at work in your life and of your loved ones. 

Whether you’re running full-speed-ahead or disappointed that it’s Monday (again), you’ll find joy in these devotions where Kerri shares hilarious stories and insights on daily life. Messy homes, messy kids, lost pets, never ending casseroles, forgetful husbands, and the desire to just take a long bath… This world can be a funny place, and these stories are bound to prove it. Read a devotion to brighten your morning, or catch a few words to make you smile before bed. There’s never a bad time for a good laugh, and as a Mom, you need a Moms’ Night Out and Other Things I Miss: Devotions To Help You Survive. 

The MOMS’ NIGHT OUT film features Sarah Drew (Grey’s Anatomy), Sean Astin (THE LORD OF THE RINGS), Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond, The Middle), Alex Kendrick (COURAGEOUS), Robert Amaya (COURAGEOUS), Andrea Logan White (REVELATION ROAD), Kevin Downes (COURAGEOUS), and platinum-selling country recording artist Trace Adkins (THE LINCOLN LAWYER).

I received these books from the publisher in exchange for honest reviews.

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Julie Arduini’s 2013 Favorite Fiction Read of the Year is…

Posted by Julie on December 31, 2013 in About Me, Book Review, encouragement, Julie Arduini |

I can’t believe we’re looking at the last day of 2013. It’s also the celebration of my surrender. Seven years ago I promised God I’d give Him my fears of rejection and start writing for Him. I created a blog that very night. And the rest they say is history.

One of my favorite things to do here is to choose my favorite reads of the year. To the author it gives them bragging rights if they want, but for me, I love looking back. I choose among the books I reviewed in fiction, non, and Kindle categories. My Kindle category is free reads I chose for me and might not have been published in 2013.

Let me tell you, choosing my favorite fiction wasn’t easy. 

Afterall, there were these great reads:

Mistaken

Letters of Love

Deliver Us

Fiery Secrets

Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska

Stress Test

Take a Chance on Me

and so much more.

I was torn between two.

Runner-up is A Marriage in Middlebury by Anita Higman.

This book has romance, a quaint town, wonderful friends. It was refreshing and sweet. If you haven’t read it, please do.

I ultimately chose this book as my favorite fiction read of 2013:

Raspberries and Vinegar by Valerie Comer!RV-cover_edited

Even months after reading it, Raspberries and Vinegar still comes to mind. Often. I loved this farm lit romance that used processed vs organic food as part of the conflict. I love strong senior citizen characters. The romance was as natural as the food, and fun to watch blossom. I enjoyed everything about this book.

I think you’ll love Jo and Zach, too.

Purchase your copy today.

Come back tomorrow to learn my favorite non fiction read of the year.

Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve!

 

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Book Review: The Promise Box by Tricia Goyer

Posted by Julie on June 25, 2013 in Book Review, God's Word, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons, surrender |
The Promise Box is Tricia Goyer’s second book in the Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series, and another Montana based Amish love story.
Every year, young Amish men descend on the cozy little town of West Kootenai, Montana, arriving in the spring to live there for six months and receive ‘resident’ status for the hunting season in the fall. They arrive as bachelors, but go home with brides! In The Promise Box, the second book of best-selling author Tricia Goyer’s Seven Brides for Seven Bachelors series, Lydia Wyse, a book editor from Seattle who grew up Amish, returns to the small community of West Kootenai to give comfort to her father after her mother’s death. She is drawn back to the familiar Amish ways after finding her mother’s most precious possession, a Promise Box of prayers and scripture. What her publisher sees, though, is an opportunity for a sensational ‘tell-all’ book about the Amish. Lydia soon finds herself falling in love with Amish bachelor Gideon Hooley. She wants nothing more than to forget her past and look forward to a future as an Amish bride. But will the pain of her childhood—and her potential betrayal of her community—keep her from committing her whole heart?

 

51qYO4GTdvL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA300_SH20_OU01_It’s hard in a crowded Amish genre to find a fresh story, but I really enjoyed the literal promise box and the conflict of Lydia’s publisher using the prayers for a tell-all. Tricia’s Montana setting once again becomes its own beloved character, and I love the slow growth of faith the characters show.

With the series, I’m curious to see how many unique stories Tricia can craft. If anyone can do it, you know Tricia Goyer can.

To purchase The Promise Box, click here.

I received The Promise Box from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

 

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Mother of Pearl: History Has a Way of Repeating Itself by Tricia Goyer

Posted by Julie on May 9, 2013 in encouragement, Guest blogger, Julie Arduini |

ImageProxyServletWelcome to Pearl Girls™ Mother of Pearl Mother’s Day blog series—a nine-day celebration of moms and mothering. Each day will feature a new post by some of today’s best writers (Tricia Goyer, Lisa Takeuchi Cullen, Beth Vogt, Lesli Westfall, and more). I hope you’ll join us each day for another unique perspective on Mother’s Day.

AND . . . do enter the contest for a chance to win a beautiful handcrafted pearl necklace and a JOYN India bag. Enter at the bottom of this post. The contest runs 5/4-5/13, and the winner will be announced on 5/14. Contest is only open to U.S. residents.

If you are unfamiliar with Pearl Girls™, please visit www.pearlgirls.info, subscribe to our blog, and see what we’re all about. In short, we exist to support the work of charities that help women and children in the US and around the globe. Consider purchasing a copy of Mother of Pearl: Luminous Lessons and Iridescent Faith to help support Pearl Girls™.

 
And to all you MOMS out there, Happy Mother’s Day!
~

History has a Way of Repeating Itself by Tricia Goyer

Forty years ago a single, young woman was about to give birth. She didn’t know how she could afford a child without her parents’ help. She hadn’t talked to her former boyfriend in months. She had no idea how to reach him, how to tell him she was having his child.

This young woman attended church some, yet her dialogue with God was stilted. How could God let this happen to her? What would her life be like now? A baby girl was born, and upon holding her child this young lady knew things would be okay. Perhaps this baby was a gift, not a burden as she supposed.

This woman raised her daughter the best she could, and while she wanted to give her child more than she had . . . history has a way of repeating itself. When the daughter became a young woman, she found herself in the same situation—living at home, pregnant and scared.

The daughter knew she could raise this child. After all, her mom had done it. But what would her life be like? How could God let this happen to her?

If you haven’t guessed already. I was the daughter born to a single mom and as a teenager became a single mom myself. At age 17, God gave me a son. My boyfriend was out of the picture, and I faced raising a child alone with little education, no money and, maybe according to the world, little hope for my future.

Now if you take this story at face value, I am nothing more than a statistic. According to government research, most daughters of young mothers will be teen mothers themselves. They face lives of hardship, living on welfare for the most part — becoming a burden rather than an asset to society.

Yet, I am not a statistic. Why? Because God doesn’t do them.

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As a 17-year-old pregnant teenager I prayed a simple prayer, “God, I have messed up my life big time. If you can do anything with it, please do.” I dedicated my life and my heart to him and things changed. I had hope in my heart and I started walking God’s way. God brought an amazing, Christian man into my life. John was a wonderful husband and a father to my son. When had a daughter and another one on the way, God did something else unexpected. He gave me the desire to write books.

This Mother’s Day, my heart is filled with thanksgiving. I’m thankful for my mother who chose life for me. I’m thankful that when I questioned my future, God gave me hope.

History has a way of repeating itself in families, but even more important that our history of mess-ups is God’s history of setting things right. God has a history of seeing something no one else does . . . like seeing a king in a shepherd boy named David, seeing an apostle in a young zealot named Paul, and seeing a mighty warrior in a frightened nobody named Gideon. God’s X-ray eyes see right through any outward characteristics or national statistics. His X-ray eyes scan down to the heart.

Where have you felt you’ve fallen short of God’s perfect plan? Trust that God’s dream is to turn a mess-up into a miracle. He’s a BIG God with BIG dreams. A God who has made an agreement with us that is eternal, final, and sealed. A God who is strong in our weakness. A God who sees the future, sees the past and has a perfect plan for me . . . and for you. It’s something we can all be thankful for.

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Tricia Goyer is a busy mom of six, grandmother of two, and wife to John. Somewhere around the hustle and bustle of family life, she manages to find the time to write fictional tales delighting and entertaining readers and non-fiction titles offering encouragement and hope. Tricia is also on the blogging team at MomLifeToday.comTheBetterMom.com and other homeschooling and Christian sites. In addition to her roles as mom, wife and author, Tricia volunteers around her community and mentors teen moms. Tricia, along with a group of friends, recently launched www.NotQuiteAmishLiving.com, sharing ideas about simplifying life. She also hosts the weekly radio podcast, Living Inspired. Learn more about Tricia at www.triciagoyer.com.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Love Finds You in Glacier Bay Giveaway

Posted by Julie on February 1, 2013 in Book Review, Guest blogger, Julie Arduini |

Celebrate with Tricia and Ocieanna by entering their “Glacier Bay” Giveaway and RSVPing for their Facebook Party on Feb. 12th!

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One fortunate winner will receive:

  • A gorgeous handmade “Glacier Bay” bracelet
  • A handmade cowl in “Glacier Bay” blues and greens
  • A bottle of custom-made “Glacier Bay” sparkle polish in blue
  • Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska by Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss and their two other “Love Finds You” titles {Love Finds You in Lonesome Prairie, Montana, and Love Finds You in Victory Heights, Washington}

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on February 11th. Winner will be announced at the “Glacier Bay” Author Chat Party on February 12th. Connect with authors Tricia and Ocieanna, get a sneak peek of their new book projects, try your hand at the Alaska trivia contest, and chat with readers just like you. There will also be great giveaways—gift certificates, books, and more!

So grab your copy of Love Finds You in Glacier Bay, Alaska, and join Tricia and Ocieanna on the evening of February 12th for a chance to connect with the authors and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the book, don’t let that stop you from coming!)

Don’t miss a moment of the fun, RSVP today. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 12th!

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Book Review: Love Finds You in Glacier Bay by Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss

Posted by Julie on January 30, 2013 in Book Review, Julie Arduini, Life Lessons |

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No matter the weather, there is one genre that always warrants a read.

Romance.

Tricia Goyer and Ocieanna Fleiss keep readers warm with their latest offering, Love Finds You in Glacier Bay.

I enjoyed this book for a few reasons.

  • It’s obvious they knew the area well. I’ve read their experiences on writing Love Finds You in Glacier Bay and I know they traveled there. It shows. They painted such a beautiful picture describing Glacier Bay that the area itself became a beloved character.
  • They kept the conflict going, but the romance was always there. I rooted for Ginny and Brett despite her singing career dreams and the history the two shared.
  • They combined a romance from the 1920’s that flawlessly fit into Ginny and Brett’s story.
  • Full dimensional and beloved secondary characters. How I loved Gram!

Here is more about Love Finds You in Glacier Bay:

Two romances weave together in one novel. When a woman discovers old letters that reveal a tender love story, she is convinced to reignite her romance with a former flame. Singer Ginny Marshall is one signature away from the recording contract of her dreams—a deal that would guarantee success for the former foster child, who still struggles to bury the memories of her painful childhood. But When singer Ginny Marshall travels to the isolated town of Glacier Bay, Alaska, she is charmed by the town’s colorful characters and stunning scenery. She discovers a box of old letters and is swept up in the love story between an early missionary to Alaska Territory and his accidental mail-order bride. When Ginny’s former fiance returns to Glacier Bay, will she discover that the love she always wanted was the one she always had?

I highly recommend you get a copy and let this romance warm you as much as it did me.

Purchase Love Finds You in Glacier Bay here.

I received Love Finds You in Glacier Bay from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.



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