Thursday, August 28, 2014

Book Blast: Waiting on Heaven

Waiting For Heaven Banner 2

Pump Up Your Book is pleased to bring you Heather Gillis' Waiting for Heaven Book Blast August 1- 29!
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PUYB Inside the Book
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Waiting For Heaven 2

Title: Waiting for Heaven: Finding Beauty in the Pain and the Struggle
Author: Heather Gillis
Genre: Religion / Memoir / Spirituality
Publisher: WestBow Press
Publication Date: March 20, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-4908-2786-5

Life can sometimes lead us to unexpected places, to only leave us broken, desperate, and hurting. Heather Gillis and her husband, Mac, waited in anticipation for the birth of their third child. Like many Christian couples, their dreams and expectations in marriage, parenthood, and daily life developed differently than they’d planned, and left them grieving a life that would never be. Their journey gives insight into a new normal and uncovers the stepping stones of the healing process. In their process, they re- discovered God’s abounding love through their experiences of joy, heartbreak, and purpose. Heather reaches out to parents around the globe to speak openly about being a wife, mother, friend, relative, or stranger during life-changing trials and devastating struggles. In God’s love, she has found beauty in the midst of pain and struggle, as well as peace in His presence on Earth while waiting for Heaven.

Book Excerpt:

Life is not about how comfortable I can be; to expect life to be comfortable is unrealistic. I’m not exempt from the harshness or pain of this world. I have realized since Bowen’s passing that there are no guarantees in life; to think otherwise leads to disappointment. When I was pregnant, I assumed Bowen would be healthy. I assumed that when I left the house, I would return, unharmed. I assumed for some reason I would make it through life unscathed; I never thought I would be writing these words.

We can do all the right things in life, but that doesn’t guarantee us rewards or benefits in this life. We did not choose the path we are walking, but God willing, we will endure what comes our way and to where God wants us to go. We can have all the plans in the world but God is in the driver’s seat, and God knows what he is doing; we just have to trust him. Uncomfortable situations have taught me to trust in God, and I have learned more than I ever thought I would; and still am.

Purchase Book at:

Barnes & Noble

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PUYB Meet the Author

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View More:
Meet Heather Gillis. In her book, Waiting for Heaven, Heather recalls the story of her infant son, Bowen, and her family's journey with polycystic kidney disease. Through Bowen's short life and death, she and her husband, Mac, discovered the true meaning of God’s love and grace. By telling her poignant story in the book and speaking to groups, Heather hopes she can help others through the challenges of loss and devastation; giving hope that their can be joy and happiness again.

After Bowen's death, Heather founded Bowen's Hope, a ministry serving kidney disease kids and their families,

especially those getting dialysis treatments at Phoenix Children's Hospital. She's also involved with Camp Maska for dialysis patients in Arizona, and has raised over $50,000 for the PKD Foundation. In addition, Heather volunteers at the Ronald McDonald House, an organization serving meals and providing temporary housing to families with children in the hospital.

Heather works part time as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist. She and Mac have two living children, Brooklyn and Blake. With a serving heart, Heather’s passions are her family and helping others.

Visit Heather online at

Contact Heather at:

Facebook: //
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PUYB Giveaway

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Pump Up Your Book and Author Heather Gillis are teaming up to give away a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive the prize.
  • This giveaway begins August 1 and ends on August 29, 2014.
  • Winner will be contacted via email on September 1, 2014.
  • Winner has 72 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Waiting for Heaven Event Page

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Graphic Novel Review: The Lost Boy by Greg Ruth

Book Title: The Lost Boy

Author: Greg Ruth

Publish Date: August 27, 2013

Genre: Middle Grade Graphic Novel

Plot (from Goodreads):  
Some mysteries are too dangerous to leave alone . . .

Nate's not happy about his family moving to a new house in a new town. After all, nobody asked him if he wanted to move in the first place. But when he discovers a tape recorder and note addressed to him under the floorboards of his bedroom, Nate is thrust into a dark mystery about a boy who went missing many, many years ago. Now, as strange happenings and weird creatures begin to track Nate, he must partner with Tabitha, a local girl, to find out what they want with him. But time is running out, for a powerful force is gathering strength in the woods at the edge of town, and before long Nate and Tabitha will be forced to confront a terrifying foe, and uncover the truth about the Lost Boy.

Why I Read this Book: I loaned this book from the library.  I have seen positive reviews about the book around the blog-o-sphere.


Overall, this book was decent and worth the read.  The book was not really my cup of tea, but others may really enjoy this book.  I got this book from the library because I was looking online for clean graphic novels that others have loved.  I found a lot of positive reviews of this book, so I decided to read it myself.

My main complaint about this book was that it was hard to follow the storyline.  I loved the illustrations of the book, but I felt like the story line needed a little more work.  It was difficult to tell when the story was a flashback or not.

The Lost Boy did have a unique and exciting storyline.  I would recommend this book to anyone who likes ghost stories.

Final Statements

Recommended Reading Age: Any Age, some "scary" content

Overall Rating: 3/5

Monday, August 25, 2014

Book Review: Hide and Watch by Jill Hicks Lawson

Book Title: Hide and Watch

Author: Jill Hicks Lawson

Publish Date: January 21, 2010

Genre: Christian Nonfiction

Plot (from Goodreads):  

Have you noticed that it is easy to speak of God's faithfulness in times of prosperity, but that in times of suffering, such praise becomes lost? In Hide and Watch, a true tale of sorrow and distress, of hope and triumph, Jill Hicks Lawson shares how she was spiritually transformed by overcoming her doubt in God during times of struggle. From enduring her battle with weight, her mother's kidney disease; to experiencing debilitating infertility and painful divorce; and eventually to becoming her mother's only hope for life, Lawson's personal accounts speak to the universal human experience of suffering, both physical and emotional, providing firsthand proof that, regardless of circumstance, God is in the business of giving hope.

By recounting moments of pain and progress, Lawson demonstrates that anguish is the only pathway to experiencing the dramatic joy and peace that result from God's intervention and healing, assuring those amid the battle that, in the end, what does not kill your faith makes it stronger.

Why I Read this Book: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.  This in no way influenced my review.


Hide and Watch is Jill Hicks Lawson's testimony about how God has helped her through rough times.  Jill tells how she was able to deal with her mother's declining health and her own declining health due to stress eating.  Hide and Watch is not only a beautifully crafted story but it is also filled with wonderful advise on what to do when your life seems to be going down hill without any hope in sight.

I would recommend this book to anyone who feels like life is out of control and does not know what to do.  Honestly, I believe that we all feel like that sometimes.  At 61 pages, this is a quick and inspirational read!


Final Statements

Recommended Reading Age: Any

Overall Rating: 5/5

Bout of Books Wrapup and Day 7

Bout of Books

On the last day of Bout of Books 11, here is the progress that I made:
  • I read the last 122 pages of Amity of the Angelmen and finished this book.
  • I read all of Asher of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker.  This book was 226 pages.
 As for my wrapup, let us look at my goals and whether I accomplished those:

1. Read at least 1 book that I have received for review
    • Amity of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker
    • Asher of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker
      2. Finish at least 3 books throughout the week
      • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
      • Amity of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker
      • Asher of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker
        3. Participate in all 3 Twitter chats
        • I participated in 1.5 of the Twitter chats
        4. Participate in at least 5 Daily Challenges

        5. Chat on Twitter everyday using the #boutofbooks
        • I did do this goal! :)
        Now let's look at the details of what I have read this week:
        Books finished: 3
        • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
        • Amity of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker
        • Asher of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker
        Pages read:801
        Personal Goals Completed: 3/5

        Sunday, August 24, 2014

        Bout of Books Challenge: 5 Books

        Today is the last day of Bout of Books 11 :(

        Today, I am doing a challenge hosted by Falling Down the Book Hole.  I am doing a challenge in which you have to choose 5 books that you would take with you in a post-apocalyptic situation.  Here is the situation:
        It is 11:00 PM on a Sunday night. You are laying in bed thinking about all of the things you must do the next day. Tasks of the coming days consume your thoughts and while your mind is somewhere else you are caught off guard by a flash in the sky that is followed by a large wailing screech that pierces the air and shatters your bedroom window. Slowly you move to the window and what you see catches your breathe and causes you to stumble back a few steps. The aliens (at least you think they are aliens) have began to enter the city and destroy everything that is in their path. Through the window your view is consumed with destruction, screaming people and large flames that are dancing across the city at a fast pace. You notice that the creatures are heading in your direction and you realize you probably have about fifteen minutes before they reach your home. That means you have only about ten minutes to gather your belongings and escape before you are caught in the attack from the aliens invading the city.
         The 5 books that I would take with me in this situation are:
        1. The Bible- This is the most important book that I own.  God can speak to me through the Bible and give me advise on what to do.
        2. The Reason by William Sirls- This is one of my favorite contemporary Christian novels.  This book would remind me of how much God truly loves me and would comfort me in my times of trouble.
        3. The Sinner's Garden by William Sirls- Seriously, William Sirls is an amazing author.  I would also take this book because it would remind me of how God can speak to us through a variety of ways.
        4. Appaloosa Summer by Tudor Robins- This has to be one of my favorite contemporary novels.  It would give me that warm fuzzy feeling that I would need in order to not stress and to think clearly.
        5. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling-  I love all of the Harry Potter novels, but seeing as this is a battle between the aliens and us, I would want to keep my book carrying weight to a minimal so I chose the lightest book in this series.
        This was a really fun challenge!  I hope that you will also participate in it.  What books would you bring with you?

        Bout of Books Updates Days 5 and 6 (Friday and Saturday)

        Bout of Books

        I started another book on Friday and also got some more reading done for college.  Yay!  Here is my progress:
        • I read the first 37 pages of Amity of the Angelmen by T.C. Slonaker.  I received this book from the author in exchange for an honest review and I am loving this book so far.
        • I read 16 pages of of my microbiology textbook, Brock Biology of Microorganisms (14th edition).
        Today (Saturday), I read some more of Amity of the Angelmen and read some textbooks and scientific papers for college.  Here is my progress:
        • I read 10 pages of a scientific paper (The Timing of Injuries and Manner of Death: Distinguishing among Antemortem, Perimortem and Postmortem Injuries by Norman J. Sauer).
        • I read 25 pages of a text book for class (Questions and Answers: A Guide to Fitness and Wellness by Liguori and Carroll-Cobb).
        • I read 80 pages of Amity of the Angelmen.