Monday, December 26, 2016

Of Poetry and God by Daniel Kerdin – Enjoyed reading this book; it’s one I’ll read again.

Recently, I was contacted by author and poet Daniel Kerdin to see if I would be interested in reading his new book of poems, Of Poetry and God.  As a fellow poet, I was excited to read Daniel’s new book in which he shares about his faith.

I am so glad that I was able to read this collection of Daniel’s poems.  I especially liked the ones that focused on people and events from Scripture.  Some of the poems sparked my imagination and others caused me to reflect on my own life and God’s work in the lives of His people.  As I read the poems based on the Bible, it made me want to reread those passages Scripture again, so I could better understand and appreciate the words Daniel used in his poems to capture the scenes. 

Some of my favorites are A Shepherd’s Tale, One the Road, The Blessing and Redemption.  In his poem, Wordsmiths, Daniel put into words the experience what writing poems is like. 

In the poem, Hail, Queen of Heaven, you will see the view of Mary from a Catholic view, which contrasts greatly from the Protestant view of what the Bible teaches about Mary.  There were a couple of poems I didn’t really connect with or understand.  But overall, I really liked Daniel’s poems.

If you like Scripture or poems about faith and life, you may enjoy Daniel Kerdin’s book, Of Poetry and God.  This is a book I will read again.  It was an enjoyment to read the work of this wordsmith.

I would like to thank Daniel Kerdin for an opportunity to read his new book, Of Poetry and God.  I was under no obligation to give a favorable review. 

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Word Clouds

Word Cloud from QuizzStar on Facebook

Word Clouds on Facebook are fun
As I wait to see what words I use most

But it got me thinking, what would the Word Cloud reveal
If it followed me around each day

What would be exposed if it recorded every word spoken
Every word shared in a text or email or online

Would they be words of life or death
Words that build up or tear down, truth or lies

Would it reveal my sinful, selfish heart
Or my love for the Lord

Would it be good and pleasing to You Lord
Or would it reveal why I so desperately need a Savior

Even more sobering
What if there was a Word Cloud that captured my thoughts

The thoughts I edit out, because even this sinner knows
There are some things that shouldn’t be said

Lord I know that You record my every word, thought and deed
There will come a day when I will give an account to You

Thank You Lord for providing Your Son, my Savior
To pay the penalty for my sin debt

If I were to be cast in to hell for eternity
I could never pay for all my sins against infinite Holy God

Thank You, Jesus, for dying for my sin
That I might be forgiven and granted eternal life

Thank You for the gift of Your Word which sanctifies me
Thank You for the Holy Spirit who dwells within

Help me to live each day
Mindful that I will give account to You

For every thought, word and deed
Help me to choose well and live out of love for You


Susan Wachtel
December 22, 2016


Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Candidate by Lis Wiehl – A Mixed Bag

Since I like books with mystery and intrigue, I decided to read author Lis Wiehl’s new book The Candidate – A Newsmakers Novel written with Sebastian Stuart.  I’ve watched Lis on Fox News and like her keen legal analysis and hoped that would translate into a good book.  Unfortunately, I found The Candidate to be a mixed bag.  

What’s  good?  I found the plotline intriguing.  Is top Presidential candidate, Mike Ortiz, as good as he seems at first glance?  Or will Erica discover there is something nefarious going on behind the scenes when she takes a closer look?  Coming on the heels of a very contentious election cycle this should be a very interesting book. 

The story is action packed and the main character, Erica Sparks, is somewhat interesting.  Her background is revealed during the course of the story but there was not a lot of depth to this character.  I liked her fiancĂ© Greg, while not perfect, he showed himself to be there for Erica in the end.  But overall I found the characters were not well developed.  What the reader learns about the characters is very surface level details, some action of course, but there seemed to be an obsession with physical appearance.  In fact, it was almost to the point of distraction.

What’s not so good?  The story was predictable.  After the first big event in the book, I found myself guessing what the next plot development would be throughout the book.  

While somewhat veiled, there were some rather sick sexual relationships in this book that cross the line in a book released by a Christian publisher.  While not described in detail, enough is said that makes it clear what’s happening.  Also, Lis took a swipe at Donald Trump by including a nasty comment from one of the characters about him.  It was unnecessary to the story and not value added.  My overall impression was Lis tried to be edgy. 

If this book had been published by a secular publisher, I would only put a cautionary note about some of the content which may be offensive to people of faith. 

I have higher expectations from Thomas Nelson Publishers.  On their website, this publisher is self-described as, “Thomas Nelson is a world leading publisher and provider of Christian content and has been providing readers with quality inspirational product for more than 200 years.”

There was nothing whatsoever Christian about this book.  There was nothing about faith.  There was one curse word as I recall and I appreciate that there was very little profanity.  But some of the content of this book was not fit material from a Christian publisher.  

I would like to thank BookLook for the opportunity to read The Candidate by Lis Wiehl.  I was under no obligation to give a favorable review. 


Little Bunny’s Own Storybook by Margaret Welwood & Illustrated by Nataly Vits – Will Spark Young Readers Creative Imagination

I was contacted by author Margaret Welwood inquiring if I would read her book for children, Little Bunny’s Own Storybook .  I read a lo...