BLOG TOUR-Book Review + Author Interview: Defy (The Blades of Acktar: Book 3)

defy-blog-tour-header.jpgHey guys!!! I’m posting today on the newest addition to The Blades of Acktar series.

defy_coverBook Description:

The war for Acktar has begun.

With his betrayal revealed, former Blade Leith Torren flees into the Sheered Rock Hills, pursued by King Respen’s vengeful Blades.

Left behind at Nalgar Castle, Renna Faythe tries to find her purpose, yet that purpose isn’t what she expected.

Brandi Faythe has been torn from her sister, and that isn’t all right. If Leith can’t rescue Renna, Brandi will take matters into her own hands.

War demands sacrifice. Courage falters. Who will find the strength to defy King Respen?

Acktar rests on one hope:

The Leader is ready.

Author Bio:

imageTricia Mingerink is a twenty-something, book-loving, horse-riding country girl. She lives in Michigan with her family and their pack of pets. When she isn’t writing, she can be found pursuing backwoods adventures across the country.

You can connect with her on Facebook, Pinterest, Goodreads, Twitter, Instagram, her blog.

To see more posts on the blog tour, click here.

 

facebook-party-announcementJoin Ms. Tricia at the Facebook Party on June 2nd. It’s sure to be very fun! Jaye L. Knight (Another one of my very favorite authors!) will be there too! There will be  giveaways of books by Jaye L. Knight, Nadine Brandes, and Angie Brashear. Other giveaways include audiobooks of Dare and Deny, and paperbacks of the whole series! I’ll be there!

My Review:

Rating: 5/5 stars.

I loved this book. It was more intense than any of the ones before it. Woah… I’m still trying to get over what just happened. This book had me feeling like my heart was being ripped from my chest.

Leith Torren has left behind Renna Faythe in Nalgar Castle. Brandi is upset. She will take any risk to get her back. Who knows what will be done to her by King Respen? They flee towards the Resistance and away from the Blades. Leith only has one hope: that the Leader will help them somehow rescue Renna. But he knows that no matter what, he will return to Renna whatever the consequences.

The bond between Leith and Renna grew and strengthened in this book. The way they interact with each other was so sweet. Leith went through so much, I mean, so much just to protect Renna. It was very torturous to read, but I think it was vital to the story. He is no longer afraid to defy Respen. Renna is braver and stronger than ever before. She has even become a bit bold. She’s kind, but willing to stand up for herself. Martyn, oh Martyn. He will forever be a favorite. I loved how this story went with him, it felt more realistic and true. His loyalties are divided between his duty as a Blade and his friendship with Leith. Brandi goes through some tough stuff for a girl her age and I enjoyed seeing how it matured her. But she is still that adventurous and spunky girl. The Leader…let me just say, he is interesting, and not at all what I expected. He gives me a creepy feeling, but I kind of like him for that.

The pace was fast, really really fast. I love how the book started almost exactly where it left off. I was sucked in and on the edge of my seat the whole time. Boom boom boom! It never slowed down. There was maybe two or three “semi-peaceful” moments, but they never lasted for long. The decisions made by certain characters had me wanting to scream, “No! Don’t do that!”. The near to death experiences were thrilling. The battles were invigorating and moving. The book didn’t end with a bang, but with something more powerful and in a way more similar to real wars. Not everything is fixed and happy at the end, but I liked it that way and I’m betting the next book will set some things right.

Everyone who loves a good Christian fantasy book must read this. It’s not preachy and it doesn’t feel forced on the story. This is one of my favorite series and I hope that you enjoy it too.

Interview:

Was Defy an easier book than the previous books to write? Or was it harder? 

Defy was by FAR the easier book of the series to write. By the time I got up to it, I pretty much had it all planned out, and the writing just came. It was so easy, it actually made it hard to move on to writing something new afterwards since it was just SO easy.

What is a fact that most people wouldn’t know about you?

Summer is actually my least favorite season. I don’t like heat, and I don’t like humidity. In the winter, you can at least bundle up and get warm, but in the summer, all you can do is wear shorts and a t-shirt, and you’ll still roast.

Weird question: have you ever cried over your own characters? 

No. I got really tense during the infamous Chapter 42 in Deny and choked up once in writing an early scene in Book 4. Other than that, no. Then again, I rarely cry when I read other books or watch movies. Yes, I’m that emotionless person who managed to sit through Pixar’s Inside Out without tears while two of my friends were bawling their eyes out.

If you had one day to spend in Acktar, what would you do?

First, I’d like to pick a rather boring day so I wouldn’t have to worry about trying to dodge Respen’s soldiers or avoid Blades. I’d like to ride Blizzard and hang out with Renna, Brandi, Leith, and everybody. As long as they weren’t too mad at me for everything I put them through.

If Leith, Renna, and Shad were in today’s modern world, what kind of job do you think each of them would have (if they had one at all)? 

Wow, this one made me think for a bit!

Renna – she’s easy. She’d be a nurse, probably working her way up to being a surgical nurse.

Shad – He’d be a second or third generation FBI agent. His father would be high up in the agency, but Shad would still want to start at the bottom and earn his way up without his father’s help. Yet, he’d also feel burdened to live up to his father’s legacy.

Leith – Has anyone seen the show White Collar? My family binge-watched it on Netflix. It has some iffy parts that we skipped, but the overall storyline is about a criminal named Neil Caffrey who ends up working for the FBI catching criminals to earn out his sentence that way. I could see Leith ending up something like that, a kid who grew up in a bad situation, then becomes a criminal informant for the FBI. Possibly with Shad as a partner? 😉

Giveaways:

There is two Goodreads giveaways! One is for Dare. One is for Deny. You have to enter by May 31st!

Goodreads Giveaway: Dare

Goodreads Giveaway: Deny

-G. Paige

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How Great is Our God?

How GreatLast week I did a post of why you are not worthless. It’s absolutely true. But there is another way people think. Instead of thinking that we are worthless and that God should have nothing to do with us, they think that they have a right to be with God, they deserve it.

I think we think both ways, just at different moments in our lives. At one time we think that we’re so below God (How could You love sinful people like us?), at another time we think that He needs to bless us (How could You do this to me?).

Both of these opposite types of thinking come from, first and foremost, just being sinful people, but I think it is also partly due to the fact that we don’t understand God. Now, I definitely don’t believe that I can make you fully understand God. I don’t fully understand Him myself. But maybe I can try to give you a glimpse of what God is like for you to begin to comprehend Him.

Last week I discussed God’s love and His saving grace. Today, I want to speak of God’s greatness, His holiness.

He created the Heavens and the Earth in days. He could’ve have done it quicker, but he was  setting an example for the way we were to live. Six days of work and one day of rest. Have you ever imagined how it went about? There was nothing. If you imagine an empty space, that’s not right, because that’s something. God spoke words, just words, and out of nothing came something. It is scientifically impossible, but with God all things are possible.

God is holy, no one else is. Holy means consecrated, sacred, separate, and/or set apart. He is perfect. This holiness was the reason He can not even look at sin. It was the reason the Israelites sacrificed unblemished lambs to pay the price for their sins. It was the reason the temple had to be built to God’s design for Him to dwell in it. It was the reason priests were struck down dead on entering the temple, if they had not been cleansed of their sins first.

Even so, at our best we are still filthy and dirty in God’s eyes.

Isaiah 64:6

We are all infected and impure with sin.
When we display our righteous deeds,
they are nothing but filthy rags.
Like autumn leaves, we wither and fall,
and our sins sweep us away like the wind.

His perfection is incomprehensible to us. He can not sin. Every act, every decision is good and right.

There’s are terrible, horrible things happening all around the world at every moment. We may not think about it much, but when we do…we can question God’s authority. I know I do. Why would He let these things happen? Is God committing these acts? No, it is not even in God’s nature to be able to do such a thing.

Job 1:12

“All right, you may test him,” the Lord said to Satan. “Do whatever you want with everything he possesses, but don’t harm him physically.” So Satan left the Lord’s presence.

But He does allow bad things to happen. Look at Job. He went through some things I’m sure 99.99% of people will never go through. And though it is hard for us to understand, God allowed it to happen.

God let’s Satan do His work, but in the end, Satan will lose.

No matter what happens, God is blameless.

Isaiah 55:8

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.

We may not understand now, I’m sure in Heaven everything will be revealed to us clearly.

Job 36:26

Look, God is greater than we can understand.
His years cannot be counted.

God’s greatness can not be measured by any of our standards. Though we will put God in this mold (or box) that allows our finite minds to comprehend Him. But, in reality, He is infinite and incomprehensible. So let’s take away the mold, the box and see God for who He really is.

G. Paige

Book Review: Unwind (Unwind Dystology: Book 1)

img_1523Rating: 5/5 stars.

Ahhh!!! I’m still not sure how to put my thoughts into words for this book. It was intense. It was twisted. It was messed up. But it was good, in a way.

There has been a Second American Civil War. Pro-Life against Pro-Choice. The two sides finally reached an agreement known as The Bill of Life. A child’s life may not be aborted or ended in any way… But from ages thirteen to eighteen, the parents of the child may have him or her “unwound”. The process of “unwinding” doesn’t “technically” end his/her life, rather he/she is just living in a new way as his/her organs and body parts are given to people who need them. Connor is a rebel teen who has gotten into too much trouble too many times and now he’s a runaway. Risa is a state ward who is going to be unwound because of budget cuts. Levi is a tithe: part of the ten percent to be given to God. So he is prepared to be unwound.

Let’s start with these characters. I loved them, alright?! They were engaging and unique. Connor has a temper which at leads to him acting before thinking. He’s not a strong and buff kind of guy, but he can still be cruel when he’s lost his temper. He’s also sarcastic. Risa’s smart and inventive. She has a lot of useful skills. She is able to come up with a cover story on the spot. She can defend herself pretty well too. Levi, normally called Lev, makes some very bad decisions. Some because it was the way he was raised, others because his hatred and anger was used against him and he was led astray. But, in the end, I think he’ll turn out alright.

It was very exciting and intense right from the start. How could a runaway story not be intense (Especially when the government is after you.)? Things finally let up for a little bit, but it didn’t last. Let me just say, what an ending! It was shocking, unexpected, but totally fits this kind of story. It is a kind of sad and happy ending that gives you the feeling that better times are ahead.

The writing was not something I’m used to, but really good. It was third person, but in present tense.

This was so thought provoking. Christianity was so twisted as to make Christians see unwinding as good. Some characters struggled with believing in God since He had let all this bad stuff happen. Characters discussed questions that they didn’t necessarily have the answers to. For example: Did they have souls? If they did, when did they get their souls: in the womb, when they born, etc.? Were they alive after being unwound? These and other questions really made me think. Some of these questions could be asked even in our own time.

There was a bit of language, but not a lot. There was a time when this boy almost, almost raped this girl, but it was stopped before anything actually happened. One kid said that he had two dads, but it never went into detail. There was a few intense kisses and it was suggested that the characters wanted it to become something more, but they never went through with that. There’s violence, but I didn’t feel like it was graphic. Some kids blew up themselves to kill other people. The story shifts to a kid’s perspective as he is being unwound, but nothing was actually described because the kid couldn’t see or feel what was happening.

This was such an interesting read, I’m excited to see how the rest of this series turns out. It is not as creepy as you would think. I’d recommend this to older turn just for some of the content. If you want something different, go read this.

-G. Paige

Book Review: Veiled Rose (Tales of Goldstone Wood: Book 2)

51rvKT3snrL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Rating: 4/5 stars.

I’m sorry to be the odd one out, but I didn’t get into this as much as Heartless. I dragged through most of it. Maybe it was because I had forgotten stuff from the first book, so that I didn’t make the connection until I was reading something random about Heartless. But once I got closer to the end…it was great!

Rose Red has a secret. A secret that has her living in isolation in the mountains with nothing but an old man she calls father and her nanny goat. But then she meets headstrong Leo, who quickly becomes her friend, when no one else would. Together they play and search for a monster rumored to be in the mountains. But their trust in each other is tested when something more real and terrifying than anything they could imagine, comes to their land.

Leo, oh Leo. I must say, he was one of my favorite characters. His humor and his temper were fun to watch. There was times when I disliked him and the decisions or actions he took, but that made him more real. People have faults; they make mistakes. Don’t you at some points dislike real people? So when I disliked him, I still considered him one of my favorites. I’m glad to watch him learn from his choices. And I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of that in the coming books. Rose Red was…interesting. I didn’t connect with her very well, but she was still really great to read about. I loved how far she was willing to go to keep her promises. I enjoyed watching the way she and Leo conversed together. It was so cute and sweet.

I thought about the first half was slow. I just couldn’t get into it, maybe because the characters were so young at the beginning and it kind of put me off. I’m not sure, because there was plenty of mystery to keep a person interested. But it did pick up speed towards the end and there was so much action and danger. I started to worry for a bit! What a conclusion! It was kind of sad. Thank goodness there is more to this series.

The tale switched between Leo and Rose Red’s point of view. Randomly, there were a few other points of view that added intrigue. This book went through a whole decade and more of time, but at no point did it get confusing. I still felt connected to the characters even after skipping over years of their lives. I have to say, that is quite an achievement.

This is a perfect blend of fantasy, fairytale, and allegory. I’m just beginning to realize how allegorical this series is. I don’t think I realized that in the first book. This is for all the people who like this kind of story. You don’t want to miss it.

-G. Paige

Here’s to You: You are Right in His Sight

Here's to You_

Here’s to you:

I believe that we set ourselves up for failure, a lot. We push ourselves too hard and too far to accomplish more than is possible. We want to believe that we can do it. That we can make it. That we can finish it. We want to be perfect. We expect ourselves to be. And it’s that expectation that goes against us when we fail. When we don’t finish it or make it. When we sin. That expectation turns into guilt that will have us rebuking and reprimanding ourselves. It makes us feel worthless. It fills us with need to somehow fix it.Read More »

BLOG TOUR-Book Review + Author Interview: Samara’s Peril (Ilyon Chronicles: Book 3)

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Hey ya’ll!!! Today I’m posting as part of a blog tour for Jaye L. Knight’s new book Samara’s Peril!!!!! It is the third book in the series, Ilyon Chronicles, and absolutely one of my favorite series ever. You can see my book reviews for Resistance (Ilyon Chronicles: Book 1)The King’s Scrolls (Ilyon Chronicles: Book 2), and Half Blood (Ilyon Chronicles: Prequel Novella). A few of these were some of the first book reviews I ever posted on here.

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Book Description:

When news arrives that Emperor Daican has been in contact with his chief war strategist, it signals potential doom for the country of Samara. Determined to intervene, the resistance in Landale, headed by Lady Anne, embark on a covert mission in hopes of unearthing further information. However, a shocking discovery leads to complications no one could have foreseen.

Armed with their newfound knowledge, they set out for Samara to warn the king. War is inevitable, and they must face two desperate battles—one on the walls of Samara’s great stronghold, and the other on the battlefield of Jace’s heart, where victory might only be achievable through great sacrifice.

Available now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iBooks!

Author Bio:

JayeAuthor2015Jaye L. Knight is an award-winning author, homeschool graduate, and shameless tea addict with a passion for Christian fantasy. Armed with an active imagination and love for adventure, Jaye weaves stories of truth, faith, and courage with the message that even in the deepest darkness, God’s love shines as a light to offer hope. She has been penning stories since the age of eight and resides in the Northwoods of Wisconsin.

You can connect with Jaye on her website, blog, Facebook, Google+, Twitter, and Etsy.

To see more people posting for the blog tour, click here.

My Review:

Rating: 5/5 stars.

I don’t know if I can convey to you how great this book, this series, is. It is absolutely amazing. I have loved every moment of reading this book, and I can not wait to see how this story progresses.

Finding out that Daican is planning something big against the country Samara, a group from the resistance led by Lady Anne goes on a undercover mission to get more specific information. There they discover something shocking that complicates things. But with the gathered information, they hope to head out to warn the king of Samara. There they will face a bigger battle than they’ve ever known, but maybe even more important, another battle is being fought in Jace’s own heart. One that could lose his life.

One of the best things about these books is the characters. There is such a great amount of amazing characters. Though a few may be similar, none of them are exactly the same. In this particular book there was so so so much character development with Jace. He has to fight so much darkness and heartbreaking fears. Kyrin is so amazing. She has this inner strength and bravery that is beautiful to see. I loved how Jace and Kyrin’s friendship is developing into something more. Anne had more of a part in this book, and it was fantastic. I love how she can give a harsh or scolding remark without sounding mean. She knows how to bring down people too full of themselves. Holden plays such a vital part in this book that I never expected. It has made me come to love him so much more. The brothers, Timothy and Aaron, I need more of them! Rachel, Elanor, and Charles were all great, new characters. I absolutely must know more about Elian and Balen. The Altair family is so fun and just enjoyable to see them all interacting together. Rayad, Warin, Trask, Aric, and Trev are all other characters that I love so much.

Let’s just talk more about Jace for a moment. He’s pretty much the central character in this book which I am absolutely happy with because he is my favorite character. Oh my goodness! In this book Jace stressed me out more than any of the earlier books. He is so broken and torn up inside. He has never been so lost before. His struggles were so real and frightening for him, I got very worried. He is going to be the death of me.

This felt so real. I connected with with the characters as soon as I began to read and I was just swept away into an amazing world where my heart was broken again and again.

The plot was exciting, intense, and totally not what I was expecting. The shocking reveal was very shocking. I literally screamed into pillow for like a minute. The battles were real, exciting, and so stressful. I mean with dragons and firedrakes and your favorite characters’ lives threatened with death, how could it not be?

It was surprising how allegorical this book was from its predecessors. It was something altogether neat and beautiful to see. I loved the parallels to Christianity, but it never really seemed like too much. It was smoothly blended into the story. This is not at all preachy like some books can be. The religion compliments the story and helps the characters answer some questions that many in our own world ask. It strengthens it without sounding unnatural.

I love this world. It’s fantasy, but not too much. The characters are so precious. The writing is amazing. And this series is going to kill me. Just go read it, alright? You shouldn’t need anymore convincing.

Interview:

Where is your favorite place to write? Why?

Outside. That is, if it’s warm, of course. In Wisconsin, that’s no guarantee. But I love the outdoors, so I like to be outside as much as I can. In the summertime, I write out on the porch a lot.

For you, what is the hardest part about everything involved in writing and publishing a book? How do you overcome it?

It’s probably the actual writing part that’s the hardest. I’ve been prone to bad bouts of writer’s block. The best way I’ve found to overcome it is, no matter how much I might hate and cringe at what I write, to just push through and put something down on the page. It can be just awful, but at least it can help me get past whatever part is hanging me up. Problem is, I’m also quite a procrastinator at times, so that makes it difficult as well.

What are you most excited about in Samara’s Peril?

All the many questions and issues that are finally answered and resolved. This book is a real turning point in the series, especially for a certain beloved character. 🙂 This book will answer most of the questions I get all the time.

What is your favorite part of the world of Ilyon?

I love the different societies. I had a lot of fun brainstorming what each of my different races were like. Even though the story has been centered in one country for the most part, the second half of the series explores more of Ilyon, and readers will get to experience more of the different cultures. I’d have to say my favorite of all of them is the crete culture. It’s kind of a mix of Native American, elves, and some of my own ideas. I’d love to be a crete and live in a crete city. They do have dragons, after all.

Giveaway:

Share in the excitement of the release and enter to win a themed giveaway pack! Prizes include an autographed copy of Samara’s Peril, a John 3:16 necklace by FaithWearDesigns, and a green wire dragon bookmark by Wirelings! (Giveaway is open to US residents only. Cannot be shipped internationally.)

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-G. Paige

To Christian Teens: Don’t Worry About Tomorrow

SAN MARINODon’t worry about tomorrow.

Don’t worry about whether you have studied enough for a test. Or whether you are getting enough credits. Don’t worry about failing.

Don’t worry about whether you’re pretty enough. Or if you are doing the right sort of things, going to enough social events. Don’t worry about whether you have enough friends.

Don’t worry about getting a driver’s license. Or having a job.

I know it’s hard to stop worrying. I know sometimes I worry to much. Especially about the silly things like reading enough and fictional characters (I know, but it is true.).

I worry about whether I’m blogging enough. Whether I’m getting my point across or whether I’m making no sense. I worry about not fulfilling all my blogging deadlines for blog tours and such.

I worry about writing. Oh my novel. It’s needs a lot of work.

I worry about whether I’m doing enough schoolwork. Or getting high enough grades. I worry about not having a plan for college.

I’m worried about letting people down and disappointing them. About not living up to people’s expectations of me.

I worry about not doing something useful with my life. I’m scared of wasting my life.

Sometimes I feel like I’m just drowning in a never-ending list of things I need to do, places  I need to go, things I need to see,…and the list goes on.

I know, there is such a thing as having a good amount of pressure. Because it can help keep us motivated. Or we might just laze around all day and waste our lives away.

But there is also such a time when that pressure, anxiety, worry, or whatever you call it becomes too much. Then it becomes overbearing. We become so stressed that we can literally lose ourselves in it. I know.

But we can’t allow these worries to control us. While we don’t have the power to overcome our worries, God can take them away and give us relief.

Matthew 6: 25, 31-34

That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.

God will give you the peace you need. He cares for you. He loves you. He can give you reassurance that will cover all your worries. He can take away all your worries, you just have to trust Him.

We are afraid of trusting anyone but ourselves. But ourselves aren’t strong enough to get rid of our worries. Only God can do it. And trust is all it takes to make it happen.

-G. Paige

Book Review: The Scorpio Races 

Scorpio-paperback-websiteRating: 5/5 stars.

Oh dear… I’m in love. This was an incredible book. I don’t think words can tell you how beautiful this book is.

On the first day of November, something unique happens on the island: The Scorpio Races. People race dangerous water horses known as capaill uisce in hopes of winning. Many riders die in preparation for it and in the race. Sean has raced many times, and won most of them. If he fears anything, no one knows. Kate was never going to race; she never wanted to. Now she is given no choice. She won’t flee from what she has given herself over to do.

Kate Connolly is amazing. She’s tough, but that doesn’t mean that she’s not without fear. Kate, also known as Puck, doesn’t allow her fear to control her actions. She has a lot of stubbornness to her that gets her in and through bad situations. Puck is willing to do almost anything to keep her family together for a little longer. Sean Kendrick is quiet, unmoving. Every choice, every action is deliberate. He has this way with the capaill uisce that is so special. He is not afraid. Finn is so childlike. He’s scared, but so very brave. Gabe has dealt with something for far too long. Now he has made the decision to fix the problem. Even if it tears his family apart. George Holly is another interesting character. He’s not from the island, but he starts to feel the same way for the island as any native would.

It was a slow moving tale, but that didn’t make it any less interesting. The tale was woven perfectly at the pace it was at. I loved how Sean and Puck’s relationship developed. Puck’s relationship with her brothers is very neat. The race was intense, but everything that built up to it made my heart go so fast.

It was intriguing world, depicted so that it felt very real. The smell of fish. The wind against my face. The pounding of the surf. The sand in my eyes. I felt it all. Every time I read this, it was like I had stepped into another world. The island was amazing in its own unique way. The cliffs, the grass, the horses, the capaill uisce, and the stormy weather made the tale what it is.

This is the fourth book that I’ve read by Maggie Stiefvater and I will say it time and time again: I love her writing. Whether she is writing in first person or third person, it is gorgeous! It is so elegant and rich. It gives the story this sort of depth that is beautiful and resonates with your heart. She could probably write about the most boring thing and I would read it because her sort of writing style keeps you intrigued and interested no matter how “boring” it may be.

Now there was a bit of language, but it was spread very thin. There was a few inappropriate references to things too. The religion on the island was a mix of superstition, island’s spiritualism, and Catholicism. But the book didn’t get into much of it.

I’m recommending this to older teens. It is really a masterpiece. You must take the time to read this.

-G. Paige

Here’s to You: You are Loved

Here's to You_

Hey readers! I’m starting a new series of posts today. I hope that you enjoy it! Please let me know your thoughts.

Here’s to you:

You are loved.

You are loved by your parents. You are loved by your brothers and sisters (if you have any). You are loved by all your relatives. You are loved by your spouse (again, if you have one).

But more important than that is the fact that you are loved by God. The God who created the whole universe. Everything from the protons, neutrons, and electrons that make up an atom to the whole solar system!

Is it not incredible to realize that God chose to make the insects, the birds, the sea creatures, the land animals, and you? He chose to make you. Before the beginning of time God made this decision.

He never had to create you or me. God was not obligated to give us life, but He chose to. He wanted to. And that choice makes all the difference in the world. It means the difference between being expendable and unwanted to having meaning and purpose. It throws a whole new light on your existence.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

God’s love fulfills all these classes so completely. God, as one verse stated, is love.

1 John 4:8

But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

While people’s love may change and shift, God’s love stays the same. It will not diminish. It will not fade over time. It is not dependent on how “good” you are or how much sin you have.

God loves you just the way you are. And He’ll love you the same no matter what you do. No matter how many mistakes you make or how far you drift away from Him, He still will always love you. That’s a promise.

His love will cleanse and take away all sin. Any sins that you have ever committed won’t matter anymore. They never will again. The burden that sin has placed on you will be gone.

His love was so great, that He was willing to sacrifice His only son to save us, the people He loves.

Can you imagine the kind of love God has to let His own son be beaten until He unrecognizable and then killed by the very same people He was trying to save? I can’t even begin to comprehend it. It resembles the kind of love Abraham showed when he was willing to sacrifice his son Isaac to God. And it is such a beautiful and sacrificial kind of love.

Wherever you are in your life, whatever you’re going through, know this: God loves you. Never lose faith in His love. Trust in Him. For His love is always with you.

-G. Paige

 

Monthly High Points: April

MonthlyWriting!!!

I finally, finally got to some writing this month! *runs around screaming with happiness* Camp NaNoWriMo was absolutely great. Thank you, Nadine Brandes, for letting me join your cabin! That word war we did together was amazing. I hope that we can do more together soon.

I got to about 30,070 words. It is not as big a number as some people did, but I’m proud of it. Now my novel that I started in November is about 80,320 words long. I did not even know that I could write something this long and it’s not even done yet. I’m hoping that I’ll finish it around 100,000 words. Then on to editing!

Reading…

I have to say…I read some amazing books this past month.

  1. Siren’s Song (The Storm Siren Trilogy: Book 3) by Mary Weber
  2. Glass Sword (Red Queen: Book 2) by Victoria Aveyard
  3. Samara’s Peril (Ilyon Chronicles: Book 3) by Jaye L. Knight
  4. The Lost Hero (The Heroes of Olympus: Book 1) by Rick Riordan
  5. The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
  6. Steel Scars (Red Queen: 0.2) by Victoria Aveyard
  7. Veiled Rose (Tales of Goldstone Wood: Book 2) by Anne Elisabeth Stengl
  8. Alone by Edgar Allan Poe
  9. Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe
  10. The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe
  11. The Bells by Edgar Allan Poe

Siren’s Song: Woah… This was so good. What a ending.

Glass Sword: This was intense. These characters will all DIE! I’m sure of it.

Samara’s Peril: I’m so glad that I got to read this early. But now I get to wait extra long for the next one. This is one of my favorite series EVER! The characters will make me go insane. Or, at least, make me sound like I’m insane.

The Lost Hero: It’s great to again enter one of Rick Riordan’s worlds. The humor was awesome. But, this is still not as good as Percy Jackson and the Olympians.

The Scorpio Races: OH. MY. WORD. This was so good. I loved this so much. It was gorgeous. It was beautiful. I’m in love.

Steel Scars: Shade! I just need a book on Shade now (thank you very much).

Veiled Rose: This took a long time to get into, but the ending so made up for it.

As you can see, the rest of the stuff I read was poetry by Edgar Allan Poe. I love his crazy and weird stuff. It is like the only horror that I read.

I’m currently reading…

  • One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp
  • The Scarlet Pimpernel (The Scarlet Pimpernel: Book 1) by Emmuska Orczy

I am also reading the Bible book Ephesians.

One Thousand Gifts: I read nothing of this, this month.

The Scarlet Pimpernel: This is a little slow, but very good. This will probably be one of my favorite classics.

Music!

You. Must. Listen. To. Twenty. One. Pilots. I’m still addicted to it… But I have been a bit into George Gershwin and Louis Armstrong. I love that feel that this type of old music gives you.

Other Things!

Having Amanda and her family over was so great! We did so many awesome thin together (like going to this rainforest called El Yunque). I was such a sobbing mess when they left. But I hope we can see each other soon.

I started watching Firefly. It’s pretty unique. It’s kind of a mix of Han Solo type adventures, country, and futuristic stuff (spaceships, technology, etc.).

On April 29th, I started on the show LOST… I’m already addicted. It has a good bit of scariness to it that it kind of refreshing in a way.

I’m patiently (Actually no, I’m kind of freaking out!) waiting to see Captain America: The Civil War. Go Captain America! Protect Bucky!

By the way, you see that photo up there? That’s what I’ve been feeling like I’ve been doing all month: running like crazy.

Also, May the fourth be with you!

-G. Paige