Evangelizing through the Catholic Arts

Hijacked, by Leslie Lynch – Book Review of Catholic Fiction

Hijacked Hold onto your knickers, because you are about to be taken on one heck of a ride with Hijacked, by Leslie Lynch. Ben Martin, undercover DEA agent, finds himself between a rock and a hard place after a drug bust goes bad, leaving him with a bullet wound in his shoulder and a need to escape – quickly! He sees no other outlet than a small plane going through pre-flight checks at a small airfield. The lone pilot should be easy to overtake, thought Ben – and away we go!

As Ben hijacks the plane, he learns the pilot is a woman, one Lannis Parker. As Lannis is forced to fly Ben out of harm’s way (by the barrel Continue reading

Virtuous Leadership, by Alexandre Havard – Book Review

Virtuous Leadership If you are looking for a way to bring virtue to the workplace, without coming across as a “Holy Roller,” then Virtuous Leadership, by Alexandre Havard is the book for you! Right from the book’s introduction you learn that “leadership is character” (Introduction xi). Havard tells us that people obtain good character as a the result of perseverance toward personal excellence. So, how do we achieve personal excellence? We do so through the practice of virtue. Havard is a man after my own heart! He speaks my language; the language of virtue.

We perceive and interpret things through the lens of character. By strengthening our character – i.e., by growing in virtue – we improve our ability Continue reading

Most Highly Favored Daughter – Book Review

Most Highly Favored Daughter Most Highly Favored Daughter, by Janice Lane Palko is salacious, intriguing and an all-around winner! If you are looking for a good book to read on a cold winter’s day, look no further than Most Highly Favored Daughter, set in Pittsburgh, PA during Super Bowl weekend.

Janice Lane Palko creates compelling, deeply fraught characters who lure you in from page one. Cara Hawthorne Wells, the socialite elite of the Pittsburgh area, finds herself in a real pickle early on in the book. Yet, Janice Lane Palko shows us that Cara is much more than a former debutante. Cara, a seeker of truth, demonstrates courage and integrity when faced with a sordid adversity. Cara’s sister, Sophia, originally comes Continue reading

8 Notes to a Nobody, by Cynthia T. Toney – Book Review

8 Notes to a Nobody 8 Notes to a Nobody, by Cynthia T. Toney, is a heartwarming, yet truthful, depiction of what it is like to be a teenage girl, coming of age. In Cynthia Toney’s tale, Wendy Robichaud, an eighth grader, comes face-to-face with some of the struggles that teens unfortunately face: eating disorders and teen suicide; feelings of inferiority and loneliness.

Right from the dedication, I was hooked, as Cynthia hones in on two very important virtues when she dedicated the book “to teens everywhere struggling to find acceptance and love.” Although the main character, Wendy, faces some struggles, Cynthia Toney does a masterful job at setting the right tone and message to give hope and prudent direction to all Continue reading

Find a Real Friend in Jesus – Book Review

real friend jesus bookWhat a joy it was to read Gary Zimak’s new book, Find a Real Friend in Jesus. I had the opportunity to hear Gary speak at this past summer’s Catholic Writers Guild conference in Chicago. IL. He spoke of his journey and his decision to give his life to Christ. He did not make that decision lightly; it came through much prayer and conversation with Jesus. You may wonder, “How do you have a conversation with Jesus?” Well, in Gary Zimak’s book, Find a Real Friend in Jesus, you learn just how easy it can be to see Jesus become your best friend through conversation!

Gary Zimak tackles all of the potential obstacles that stand between you and Continue reading

Ornamental Graces, by Carolyn Astfalk – Book Review

Ornamental Graces Ornamental Graces, by Carolyn Astfalk, is a wonderful story, with interesting, compelling and authentic characters that you immediately come to love. Dan Malone, a tortured soul with a troubled past, meets Emily Kowalski, a young woman with dreams unfulfilled. Throughout this story, we see God at work bringing these two souls together time after time, until one day their relationship blossoms. From there, we see these two characters traverse through the journey we call life, with all of its ups and downs. Will Dan ever come to grips with the mistakes he made? Will Emily ever fulfill her dreams? And, will obstacles deprive them of developing the relationship they seemed destined to live?

Carolyn Astfalk takes you on a Continue reading

Doors of Mercy; Journey Through Salvation History- Book Review

Doors of Mercy We are about one month away from closing out of this Jubilee Year of Mercy. Yet, it is never too late to learn about Christ’s mercy and receive this gift from Him. As we conclude this joyous year, I thought it apropos to do a little reading on the topic of Mercy. We can always learn more about this wondrous gift and virtue. Therefore, of all the books available on the topic, I decided to read Doors of Mercy: A Journey Through Salvation History. I picked an excellent choice. Let me tell you why!

Doors of Mercy, by Father Jeffrey Kirby

Father Jeffrey Kirby, STL, does a fantastic job of describing God’s limitless mercy in Doors of Mercy; Continue reading

From Grief to Grace, by Jeannie Ewing – Book Review

from-grief-to-grace I have to admit that I chose to read From Grief to Grace: The Journey from Tragedy to Triumph, by Jeannie Ewing, because I personally know the author and wanted to support her writing. Little did I know when I opened the first page, just how much I needed to read this book for my own benefit! Like many, I associated grief only with death. No one in my life had recently died. Therefore, I didn’t see a need to read it for any other reason than to support the author. I couldn’t have been more wrong!

My Story of Grief

Grief can result from any type of loss; the loss of a loved one, a home, a job, your Continue reading