Wednesday, December 3, 2008
What do you do when the world hands you lemons? You make lemonade.
Lemonade is exactly what Noel Richardson sets out to make of his life. Yet, as noble as his goal is, Noel will soon find that his attempts to apprehend all the right ingredients at the same time is not as easy as he initially thought.
Life for the teenage Noel drastically changes for him and his family after an accident leaves him deaf. His loss of hearing sets him on a course to develop skills that will help compensate for the silence he now lives in. That course will be littered with those insensitive to his communication needs.
Noel’s determination to succeed in all aspects of life is assisted by his relationship with God. As he grows in his faith, his thirst for more is not being quenched within the current ministry he is a member of. Unfulfilled with closed-captioned messages provided by television ministry, Noel's days are filled with a need for inner peace. His daily search comes to a blessed end when he discovers the love of his life and the Deaf Ministry he needs, in one place. What Noel will soon discover is that life without volume is about to be turned up.
Within the pages of Talk to Me, Pat Simmons has done an admirable job of bringing attention to the trials of the deaf as they make their way through what we consider a normal day. With memorable prose and thought-provoking passages Ms. Simmons sheds light on the necessity of vulnerability for all relationships we enter into; especially the one we must maintain with ourselves.
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Conversations with Pat Simmons are always delightful and filled with caring for others.
When she initially revealed the subject-matter of Talk to Me, I was intrigued. Over time she revealed that she has honed her ASL (American Sign Language) skills in order to communicate with her brother-in-law who is deaf. That alone touched my heart. But, if you have ever spent any period of time with this tireless and community-minded dynamo you would understand why.
Her humble and bubbly personality easily draws people in and sets them at ease. That admirable trait finds its way into her writings as well.
Reading books give us the opportunity to momentarily step away from the stress that life offers us. Reading books from Pat Simmons allows one to step into a fictitious world blended with enough realism to evoke inner-reflection.
In addition to being a novelist Pat has worked as a news writer, a talk show host and news reporter. She is also co-publicist for Midwest Publicity. And if that isn’t enough for a woman married twenty-five years and mother of two, Pat also handles publicity for the Romantic Times Convention.
With all the hats she wears you would think she would consider slowing down. That is not a remote possibility for the recipient of the Katherine D. Jones (2008/Romance Slam Jam). Pat is hard at work on upcoming releases. Faithful readers will be treated to Not Guilty of Love in 2009. Still Guilty and Free from Guilt, the last two books in the series will follow.
There is much more I could add to this conversation, but I will stop here. To learn more about Pat Simmons visit her website at: www.patsimons.net.
at 8:39 PM
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Dijorn Moss is to be applauded for his inaugural voyage into the literary world. It is refreshing to read a Christian work that truly lives up to its genre. From the first page of My Father’s House the intent of the author is evident. What is that intent? To give hope to those facing what seems to be insurmountable odds.
Young Timothy Wells has the potential to develop into a life-changing pastor. Sooner than later his gifting will be tested. Thrust into headship of Gethsemane Church, he is beset with trials that would test the faith of a seasoned Pastor. It will be the trials that the young pastor faces that will cause him to draw upon his faith and the gifts imparted into him by his mentor and ministry predecessor.
How Author Moss presents the myriad of needs for Timothy’s parishioners, his students and family will speak to readers from all walks of life. The situations are real and their reactions and consequences are believable.
Enjoyable from beginning to end, I do believe this story would have benefited from more depth given to the characters as well as deeper insight as to how each processed through their trials. All in all I would recommend this to others. I look forward to the next release from Dijorn Moss.
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Dijorn Moss has the ability to plant seeds of hope in the bleakest situation. From the beginning of our conversation, it became evident that this soft-spoken man is a truly a complex soul.
Consistently I was impressed by his love for people and desire to please God through not only his writing, but in all that he sets his hand to. He attributes much of who he has become to God, his mother and examples set by the males in his family. Lovingly he spoke of a core principle passed down from his great-grandfather to the Moss Men – “While people are out playing that is the time to go to work.”
To work is exactly where this debut novelist has gone. While promoting his freshman release, My Father’s House he is simultaneously working on several manuscripts. In addition to this he contributes a monthly column, Food for the Soul, a work that gives voice to undiscovered inspirational talent to Tight Rope Magazine.
Dijorn Moss moves through life believing in the blessings and favor of God for now and the future. Anyone who has opportunity to converse with this man of promise most assuredly will come to understand that his lifestyle aligns with his spoken philosophy, “We all have God-given talents, gifts and dreams and the right to pursue them.”
To learn more about Dijorn Moss visit him on the web at: http://www.dijornmoss.com
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Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Today I have the honor of featuring the co-author of Truth and Intimacy: A Couple’s Journal – Lacresha Hayes.
I consider this an honor because it is refreshing to present to others those who take the covenant of marriage seriously. When I say seriously I do not refer to the reckless emotion of excitement that comes with the fluttery feeling of: 1) first encounter; 2) the façade of dating; and 3) marriage without counting the costs or truly understanding the covenant vow made with Christ. I speak in terms of entering the marriage covenant understanding that it requires more than looks and currency to sustain it.
So now that I’ve said this you may be asking yourself, what’s the big deal? Why would I be interested in reading Truth and Intimacy: A Couple’s Journal?
Perhaps you would entertain reading this book because you are considering marriage. Maybe you are in a marriage covenant that could use wise counsel. You may consider the content of this book because you have asked yourself why your marriage failed. At the risk of sounding pushy I dare to suggest that you may consider this read in order to enhance the strength you are already building with your mate.
We invite you to drop by with questions you may have and thank you in advance for your input.
I would like to begin today’s session with asking the first two questions of our co-author.
1. Truth is a vital component of any relationship. Why do you believe couples defer from truth in relationships?
2. What do you believe are the components of intimacy and how can couples capture and maintain it?
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Lacresha Hayes is the author of eight books and counting. She is also a publisher, a Christian consultant, a minister, a wife and a mother.
Her passion is helping hurting women recover from abuse, and preaching the truth of the Word of God, no matter the cost.
Contact her at:
Truth and Intimacy blog - http://truthandintimacy.blogspot.com
Lacresha's Author Site - http://lacreshatheauthor.weebly.com
A Place of Healing - http://lacreshahayes.weebly.com
Pretty, Prosperous, Powerful - http://learntofeelpretty.blogspot.com
Children's Lit Blog - http://alittlebitofchildrenslit.blogspot.com
CHMI - http://chmi.weebly.com
Fan Club Site - http://lacreshahayesfanclub.weebly.com
Myspace - http://www.myspace.com/lacresha75
The Rape of Innocence - http://therapeofinnocence.blogspot.com
at 10:05 PM
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. Psalm 127:3
This is a scripture that every parent should heed, but few do. Inside the pages of My Son’s Wife, the latest page-turner from author Shelia Lipsey, readers will come face-to-face with the bi-product of parental neglect.
For First Lady Audrey Graham keeping up appearances is her ministry. If they can see it they can achieve it seems to be her personal mantra. For all intent and purposes she is the consummate first lady in every sense of the word, or is she. As you are given a look inside the private life of the Graham family, the façade of perfection begins to lose its luster.
Stiles has followed in his father’s footsteps and will soon ascend to the pastoral throne. His sister Francesca is a mystery no one, but her best friend Rena understands. When Rena and Stiles become engaged, the lid on the pot of Francesca’s questionable past and present threatens all that their mother holds dear.
Author Lipsey is to be commended for presenting a work with subject matter most do not touch beyond superficial means. With skill she opens eyes to that which statistics is showing as growing at an alarming rate within the Christian community. Equal skill is applied to addressing the subject in a way that will provoke readers to thought and possibly reassessing how they may have or are currently treating those considered to be – not the norm.
It is this reviewer’s hope that there will be more authors stepping out of the shadows to present works of standards that speak to the social ills most refuse to touch.
My Wife’s Son
Available at: Amazon
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My Son’s Wife:
Sinful revelations that only a loving and forgiving God can make right.
But there is a great difference between Adam’s sin and God’s gracious gift. For the sin of this one man, Adam, brought death to many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of forgiveness to many through this other man, Jesus Christ. And the result of God’s gracious gift is very different from the result of that one man’s sin. For Adam’s sin led to condemnation, but God’s free gift leads to our being made right with God, even though we are guilty of many sins. For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ. Romans 5:15 – 17 New Living Translation
Dialogue With The Author
Reading My Wife’s Son often brought to mind the story from the bible regarding Jacob and the favoritism he harbored for two of his sons. It also made me extremely aware of a need for more books that speak to the dysfunction viewed as normal within the family unit.
Dialogue with the author, Shelia Lipsey reveals her concern for having healthy families. “My Son’s Wife is not merely a story about favoritism and family problems, it is one that reveals how delicate the human heart can be and how easily even God’s children can be the subject of mockery, ridicule, hate and persecution caused by things they experience in life. It further reveals to what depths humankind is willing to go to hide the truth about their lives in order to preserve what we want others to believe about us.”
Candidly she remarks that this is consciously and unconsciously done without realizing the consequence attached to our actions. “I arrived at this conclusion because unfortunately some of the most tragic conflicts happen within the family. Those incidences include, but are not limited to domestic violence committed by parents and children, murder, jealousy that leads to numerous and often sad and disappointing outcomes, as well as a separation of the family and a brokenness of the relationship Christian families once professed to have with God.
My Son’s Wife reveals that even during the darkest moments of our lives, the worse mistakes we’ve made, the horrible suffering from the sins we commit, that God is all loving, and remains sovereign. He looks upon us and instead of seeing the filthiness of sin, He sees our hearts, our frailties, our weaknesses, and He loves us – still. His power of redemption and willingness to forgive us of our sins and cast them as far as the east is from the west, is a story that can calm even the savage beast.”
In closing I wanted our author to tell you what her hopes are for those who will read the novel. Without hesitation her response reached beyond the surface to touch my soul. “Do not allow the title My Son’s Wife misguide you because it addresses a number of family issues other than marriage. My Son’s Wife is the perfect book for parents, for young adults, for singles, for those who know God and for those who choose not to accept Christ as their Lord and Savior; this is a story that can pierce the toughest heart and penetrate the bitterness, the feeling of loss and failures of ordinary people, from ordinary means, in extraordinary situations and circumstances of life.”
Shelia E. Lipsey is a native Memphian. She attended Belhaven College in Jackson , Mississippi , graduating magna cum laude with a BBA degree. Lipsey, a published author, professional copyeditor and inspirational speaker has been actively writing and speaking most of her life. Lipsey has written several short stories and over 200 poems which she has plans of publishing in the near future. Her novels with Urban Books are entitled, Into Each Life (Jan. ’07), Sinsatiable (Aug.’07).
Among Lipsey’s list of literary accomplishments and affiliations, she was awarded Conversations Book Club 2008 Author of the Year (thebestbookclub.info), Dallas Morning News Bestselling Author ’07, Urban Knowledge Memphis Bestselling Author ‘07; Founding president Memphis African American Writers Group (MAAW), president UC His Glory Book Club (uchisglorybookclub.net) Founder of Living Your Dreams Now (livingyourdreamsnow.net) online member of Black Writers Christian Network (email@example.com), Booknibbler_Christian, Black, Copy Editor (www.shelialipsey.com).
Lipsey is also a contributing blogger for Sankofa Literary Society (sankofaliterarysociety.org), guest columnist at Blogginginblack.com, as well as several other online literary groups.
at 1:09 PM
October has been set aside as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month; it is also the birth month of my eldest son.
Last year I wanted to do something that would honor Debra Beed (his mother) and Dean Lewis (my aunt) who lost their battle with breast cancer. To that end I proposed to donate $1.00 to breast cancer research for each person who left a comment on this blog during the month of October. This year On Assignment Publishing is increasing its donation to $2.00 per post left.
Please help us help others by stopping by, leaving a comment and encouraging others to do the same. Comments are not limited to discussion of breast cancer for there will be other discussions during the month. The goal is to amass numbers for donating to this necessary research.
Women get breast cancer when cells in the breast don't grow right and a tumor forms. Getting a mammogram (x-ray of the breast) can help find the cancer early. This gives a woman more treatment options and makes it more likely she will survive the cancer.
African American women are more likely than all other women to die from breast cancer. Tumors are found at a later, more advanced, stage so there are fewer treatment options. Some reasons for this may include not being able to get health care or not following-up after getting abnormal test results. Other reasons may include distrust of the health care system, the belief that mammograms are not needed, or not having insurance.
We do not know how to prevent breast cancer. But there are things you can do to reduce your risk, such as keeping a healthy weight and limiting how much alcohol you drink.
There are things you can do to find breast cancer early:
• Get a mammogram. It is the best way to find out if you have breast cancer. A mammogram is an x-ray picture of the breast. It can find breast cancer that is too small for you or your doctor to feel. All women starting at age 40 should get a mammogram every one to two years. Talk to your doctor about how often you need a mammogram. If your mother or sister had breast cancer, you may need to start getting mammograms earlier.
A breast self-exam and a clinical breast exam are not substitutes for mammograms.
• Get a clinical breast exam. This is a breast exam done by your doctor or nurse. She or he will check your breasts and underarms for any lumps, nipple discharge, or other changes. The breast exam should be part of a routine check up.
• Get to know your breasts. You may do monthly breast self-exams to check for any changes in your breasts. If you find a change, see your doctor right away.
at 11:29 AM
Friday, August 22, 2008
I’M ON MY WAY BACK!
I want to thank everyone who has supported this blog in the past while I was away tending to personal business.
We’ll be back strong in October. Look for some fantastic reviews along with a few other additions.
Until next time remember – There is no such thing as an acceptable loss in God’s Kingdom!
at 8:03 AM
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
Every now and again you come across a book that makes you ponder the reality of purpose. Me, Myself & Him is one such work. In her debut Christian novel, E.N. Joy has done a good job of reaching out to those who can truly identify with the inner struggles of life.
Locksie has a great relationship with her live-in boyfriend Dawson who daily assures her of his undying love. Through her close relationship with her Aunt, Locksie is daily informed of the unconditional love God has for her. Conflicting messages and lifestyle set off an internal tug-of-war within Locksie as she seeks to determine which is the greater love.
Dawson too is in a struggle - the struggle to lead a life devoid of outside interference. Recognizing the changes in Locksie as well as receiving unwanted advice from his younger brother does little to shine light on the future he envisioned. Add to this an eclectic good supporting cast and you are placed in the passenger's seat for Locksie's journey to understand who she is and what she will and will not accept from family, friends and lovers.
Reviewer/Dr. Linda Beed
On Assignment Reviews
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Tuesday, April 15, 2008
First Sunday in October presents a view of the purity that can be had in a relationship between a man and woman.
Julia Simone is not the ordinary woman. Her outer persona is the reflection of a successful woman in total control of her surroundings. The same can be said for Pastor Reginald Pennington.
The two are mature and know what they want out of life. Through happenstance they enter into a business agreement. Exposure to one another opens the door to possibilities beyond business. It will be Pastor Pennington's preconceived notion of who she is and the truth of what he expects that jeopardizes what could be. Additionally each has a past that is blocking their way to true happiness.
Unlike most romance novels, First Sunday in October takes its characters and readers through the process of becoming a friend and then growing through friendship. As like turns to love the story is not infiltrated with the trappings of steamy date nights and/or gratuitous bedroom scenes. Combining biblical truths with a strong storyline Author Campbell has presented a tale well worth reading.
Reviewer/Dr. Linda F. Beed
On Assignment Reviews
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Thursday, April 3, 2008
Jezebel is the name often spoken in hushed tones, behind closed doors and flung at women who are considered `loose'.
The story opens by introducing us to Jessie Belle, a woman who is no stranger to the aforementioned whispers and derogatory remarks. With her reputation already sullied in the tiny town of Mayville, her options for escape are narrowing. The margin for departure enlarges when Traynor Deveraux fills in for his father at the annual revival hosted by Jessie Belle's father. Overcome by Jessie Belle's feminine whiles Traynor marries her and takes her away to the life she always dreamed of. Well, not really.
Jessie Belle lives up to the name of her biblical mirror image as she controls, manipulates and destroys many of the lives around her for personal gain. Throughout the pages of this rich story you will see how easily intelligent God-fearing persons such as her husband can walk into catastrophe with open, yet unseeing eyes.
The well developed characters and plot will keep you turning page after page in search of answers to raised questions. Without fail you are left with the knowledge that in spite of your failings, God is a forgiving God who accepts our wholehearted repentance.
Reviewer/Dr. Linda F. Beed
On Assignment Reviews
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Monday, March 24, 2008
Author Gray does not disappoint readers with this power-packed sequel to his debut novel.
In All Things Work Together, we find Fred Bennett transitioning from being a playa to a prayer. Determined to leave the past behind Fred sets out to become the disciple of God he knows he was meant to be. Challenging his walk is Raoul Carizales. Raoul, a child recovery specialist, is confident and a bit on the cocky side. He is also Fred's rival for the affection of the beautiful Yolanda. Despite their dislike for one another they find themselves needing to work together to solve one of Raoul's cases.
The author has done a great job of bringing action, rather than drama into a work that shows that real men can and do worship God while taking care of serious business.
Reviewer/Dr. Linda Beed
On Assignment Reviews
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Thursday, January 24, 2008
…And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. In a world where `Me First' has become the norm, it is refreshing to read a text as heart-felt and instructive as Touch: The Power of Touch in Transforming Lives.
Through the eyes of this hands-on pastor the reader receives life-lessons rooted in biblical foundation. It also shows us that ministry is not confined to the official positions of church leadership. Clearly this writing shows that ministry is setting your hand to doing the work of Christ, be it on your job or while at play.
With consistency, Pastor Rasmus not only stresses the necessity to know your neighbor, but also to love them. This love he speaks of has the power to effect change for not only the current recipient and the giver, but for generations to come. It is a love that has to do with a personal rather than a distant touch.
As gentle as it is direct, Touch is a read that makes us mindful of the compassion, grace and mercy of Christ. It shares the joy as well as the challenges and heartache of serving. Above all, its content has the potential to provoke self-examination. After consuming these words of passion and wisdom from one on the front line, one might ask: Is it enough to speak about change or is it my duty, my reasonable service, to become a part of the change we seek?
Reviewer/Dr. Linda Beed
On Assignment Reviews
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