Hope in the Balance

Deb’s Dozen: Hope is in Hope as is evil. Kelsey and friends continue investigating.

Hope in the Balance is the second book in The Hope Trilogy. We find the characters from the first book continuing in the second. Kelsey, Harmonie, Kavon, and Miguel along with their teacher, Ms. Montez, are continuing to try to track down the people behind the bad things happening. They solved the mystery of the missing girl who gave her name to Hope in the first book, Hope is a Dangerous Place, but there are still evil doings and a dark atmosphere pervading the town.

Pastor Axel, Kelsey’s dad, continues the prayer meetings—and they grow and grow until they outgrow the Axel’s home. Little kids to adults from all sections of Hope are now coming to pray for each other and for Hope.

Jon Breckinridge still riles up the Town Council with his articles. Joe is now helping him. Uncle Fes from the black side of town encourages Pastor Axel and the kids. The Latin section is up in arms over their pay and treatment by the ranchers. Miguel’s mother is on the run and needs a place to hide. What will become of these people?

Will prayer work? The Bible says the “Word of God is sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit.” Angels are afoot. Miracles are happening, but so are murders. The aura and power of evil is strong.

Hope in the Balance is every bit as enthralling and engrossing as the first book, Hope is a Dangerous Place. You’ll love the continuation of the story. Five stars.

JIM BATON has spent the last twenty years in the world’s largest Muslim nation, building bridges between Muslims and Christians who both desire peace. His speaking and writing call people out of fear and into authentic friendships that can change the world. Jim also has a been on a lifelong pursuit of personal and societal revival and transformation.

Promises to Keep

Deb’s Dozen: A long ago romance, two kids in love, faith comes between them.

Rarely do I review movies, but this film powerfully touched me. Promises to Keep is a story of unrequited love, two happy marriages, a new generation romance, and the dividing factor of faith.

Many years ago, Jonathan was in love with Evelyn, but Jon was a devout Catholic, and Evelyn had left the faith. Torn apart by that difference, they each went their separate ways. Both married, happily, and had a child. Now, many years later, their paths cross again.

Jon’s daughter and Evelyn’s son have fallen in love. However, Lisa is strong in her faith, and Aaron basically has none. When Lisa breaks up with him for that reason, Aaron confronts his mom about why they don’t go to church. Evelyn tells him he was baptized Catholic which sets him on a path of discovery of who and whose he is.

In the beginning scenes of the movie, Tom, Evelyn’s husband dies. She is totally distraught and angry when Jon comes on a condolences visit. Things progress from there, but faith is the “elephant in the room.” As the two of them realize they still love each other, faith brings conflict challenges, and angst. Confiding a long held from Jon secret, Evelyn is astonished when Jon says, “There is nothing you could ever do that I would not forgive you for.”

You will want to view this movie. I guarantee you will be touched and encouraged no matter your faith. I give this movie five stars!

Adams PR Group sent me a screener of Promises to Keep, but I was in no way obligated to write a review.

#debsdozen #positivegrace #followyourheart #hallmarkmovies #acifilms #aciinspires #familymovie

What a Tangled Web We Weave

Deb’s Dozen: An adopted child, a son in need—two mothers in sacred bond

The Plans We Made by Kathryn Cushman and Lauren Beccue is a wonderful story of loss and love and forgiveness. I must admit I had my doubts as I started to read, but the captivating characters and the situations soon had me in their grasp. I found I could not put down the book until the denouement was reached.

Caroline Chapman, offered the job of her dreams, must choose. Does she follow her fiancé and his dreams, or does she stand up for herself and follow her own. She chooses dreams.

Lauren Riley faced a choice many years ago. Her dream shattered, she chose the only path she felt was right. Now, many years later, that choice comes back to haunt her, but also to give her hope.

Faced with the imminent death of her son, Lauren must make another choice—to perhaps destroy the life she enjoys now to save her son. And possibly to destroy the life of another, innocent, person. “Oh, what tangled webs we weave, when we first practice to deceive…” as Sir Walter Scott wrote so many years ago.

You will find yourself fascinated with the stories of Caroline and Lauren, and you will root for them both to find happiness. Five stars!

Kathryn Cushman, a former pharmacist, now writes award-nominated books. The Plans We Made is her tenth novel. Lauren Beccue lives in Santa Barbara with her family after graduating with a BA in English from Holy Cross. Both write about faith and family.M/p>

The Plans We Made came to me from participating in a blog tour. I was in no way obligated to write a favorable review. And as an Amazon associate, I may make a small commission for any products you purchase as a result of a link in this post.