Book Review – Under a Summer Sky

Ever heard of Melody Carlson?  She is a well accomplished fiction writer with many published books, and when I saw that she had a new book out for review, I snagged the opportunity to get a copy and be one of the first to read it.  I’ve reviewed other books of hers and have found them to be sweet and lighthearted.  Under a Summer Sky was much of the same.


In this book, art teacher Nicole Anderson has the opportunity to travel to Savannah for the summer to run her mother’s best friend’s art studio in her absence.   After just going through a break up and feeling run down after a long year of teaching, she hopes to relax in a huge Southern home on her days off and grow in her artistic abilities as she meets the challenges of running a studio.  However, the other employee at the studio makes work extremely difficult for her, and some childhood friends, now handsome men, both seem to be vying for her attention.  Furthermore, a young teen girl in need of some mentoring befriends her.

Nicole has more adventures than she planned for, as she navigates a new beautiful city and the relationships with people living there.  In the end, she learns more about herself and steps into a future she never would have imagined.   I have been to Savannah and recognized some of the names of places mentioned in this book, which was kind of fun.  Though I wish there was a more faith-based theme throughout this book, there is mention of the way God directs this main character’s story and the relationship she has with Him.

Although this book was an easy and predictable read, it was a perfect happy and lighthearted story for some of the lazier days of summer.  Pick up a copy of this book for your next beach trip or pool time.

I received this book from the blogger Revell Reads program in exchange for my honest opinion.  


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Book Review… Sacred Privilege

As soon as I saw that Revell had Kay Warren’s new book Sacred Privilege available for review, I had to hurry up and sign up for a copy, and I couldn’t wait to start reading when it arrived.  Although this book was written for pastors’ wives and I am currently not one, I admire Kay so much and have enjoyed and learned from every book she’s written.  Sure enough, this is a book that I soaked up as well.

sacred privilege

Sacred Privilege is a raw, honest look at the privileges and challenges of being in ministry and supporting a husband in ministry as a pastor’s wife.  The chapters in this book cover the following:

  • accepting yourself and your calling
  • adapting to change
  • helping your children thrive
  • communicating well with others
  • self care
  • valuing seasons and moments
  • protecting your private life
  • dealing with criticism
  • keeping an eternal perspective


Kay Warren has been through many hardships in her journey of faith, ministry, and marriage to her husband Rick.  I so appreciated her vulnerability and willingness to share the hard things she has been through, which include but are not limited to: building a church from the ground up, breast cancer, health challenges with her children, and her son’s suicide.   Just the kind honesty and hope that she shares through her words in this book will bring encouragement and motivation to anyone in need of it.

“We have to realize that when we are not unified, the world doesn’t know that God is real and doesn’t know that He loves them.  Wow.  This truth doesn’t leave much  room for our wounded pride – even if it’s justifiable…. Most of us have a very difficult time giving up our claims to what we feel people owe us.  But when we don’t freely forgive, we love ourselves more than we love God – and more than we love the people who don’t yet know God.” 

See what I mean?  The beautiful truths in this book will definitely be a support to pastor’s wives, but I also believe that this is a good resource for any woman in any kind of ministry.  Moreover, it will help those of us who aren’t pastors’ wives become more familiar with the challenges that pastors’ wives face and better know how to pray for them.   Thanks, Kay Warren, for your honest encouragement and undeniable testimony of God’s faithfulness in your life and ministry, that is portrayed all throughout this book.

I received this book from the blogger Revell Reads program in exchange for my honest opinion of these books.  


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If you’re needing a little happiness today…

Man, I do not know where the summer has gone!  But it surely has flown by, and now we are starting to look ahead to fall and an even busier schedule.  The good part about that is that I should have more time for writing, which I dearly miss right now.  I’m hopping on here this week though, in the middle of an Olympics watching marathon and a lot of work going on around here… … {…Read More}

Some good summer reads…

We are thick into summer, which really does seem to bring out some “lazy days” around here.  This is the time of year that I challenge my kids with summer reading programs, and I also immerse my own self in a ton of fiction of all different kinds.  Recently I had the chance to review two sweet inspirational fiction books that are new releases, just in time for some relaxing summer reading. I read All … {…Read More}

Book Review… Brave Girls: Beautiful You

I am constantly trying to find ways to encourage my daughter to grow in her faith and let her relationship with God help her navigate the ups and downs of these transitional tween years.  So when I saw that there was a new devotional book out for tweens that will help them grow in knowledge and confidence as the beautiful girls they  are in Christ, I snatched it up quickly. This devotional book, Brave Girls: … {…Read More}

Book review – The Prophetess

Whew… it’s been awhile, hasn’t it?  If you’ve been following this blog for any length of time, you probably know that the silent periods on here are usually when God is doing a great work in my heart.  This time is no different.  I’ll try to find the words to share more soon, but for today, I’m back sharing about a book I recently had the chance to review and just finished over spring break. Have you … {…Read More}

A call to gratitude (and a book review)

My least favorite time of year, when it comes to parenting my kids, is when the toy catalogs come out.  Right around when the holiday decorations start being seen around town, our mailbox starts overflowing with its own décor – catalogs galore.  And not just any catalogs, but catalogs that appeal to little people with big eyes.  Eyes that are prone to see all that they don’t have, that their friends do. We are blessed … {…Read More}

Book Review – Prayers that Changed History

Every once in awhile, the Lord connects somewhere I’m being challenged with a similar concept on a level my kids can relate to.  Lately, I’ve been convicted a lot about prayer… the importance of it, the power of it, and my need to do more of it.  I’ve been challenged to make prayer such a priority in my family that it becomes a habit my children see as vitally important in their own lives.  So when … {…Read More}

Book Review… Taming the To-Do List

Recently, I had the opportunity to read the new book Taming the To-Do List, by Glynnis Whitwer.  I must be honest and say that I put this book off for awhile when I got it in the mail to review.  I did want to read it eventually, but it seemed more practical to me when I was more interested in inspirational reads at the time. Boy, was I surprised when I started reading it.  I … {…Read More}