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Friday, October 20, 2017

NIV Reader's Bible

The idea behind the NIV, Reader's Bibleis that by omitting the verse numbers within the text, it reads more like any other narrative. It is a unique experience to read the Bible this way, and it helps you become immersed in the stories of the Bible. But, no worries--the verse references appear at the top of each page, and there are comprehensive footnotes following every book.

The contemporary, simple format of NIV Reader's Bible includes a gold and gray cloth-over-board cover, lay-flat binding, and large fonts on bright white pages. It is a very readable format, and the color and design scheme are modern and elegant.

NIV Reader's Bible features:

  • Complete text of the accurate, readable, and clear New International Version text
  • Readable single-column, black letter text
  • Line-matched text for the optimum reading experience
  • Verse numbers removed throughout text
  • Footnotes follow every book
  • Scripture reference included at the top of each page
  • Ribbon marker
  • 10.5-point type size

I love the idea of being able to read the Bible in this way. This edition is like reading a novel, other than the tissue thin Bible pages. With the notes appearing at the end of each book instead of on each page, the reading experience is unencumbered. It takes a little more work to match the notes up at the end, but it also helps you focus and just read. 

This Bible contains a table of weights and measures, but otherwise is no frills. There are no maps or other supplementary information beyond the footnotes. 
The publisher provided a review copy of NIV Reader's Bible. 

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Picturing Heaven

Have you joined the adult coloring book craze? Picturing Heaven: 40 Hope-Filled Devotions with Coloring Pages by Randy Alcorn is a wonderful way to spend some creative time.

Picturing Heaven is a coloring book, devotional, Bible study, and stress-reliever all in one. The beautiful designs in this book, accompanied by Scripture verses and devotionals are beautiful and centered around the imagery of Heaven.

The heavy-weight cardstock pages are suitable for exploring a variety of art mediums such as colored pencils, markers, and even paint. The format of the book encourages users to get creative as they meditate on the verses and let their inner artist flourish. One feature I wish the publisher had done is to make the pages perforated at the binding. The pictures are so pretty that they would make nice wall art.

The designs in Picturing Heaven depict items from the New Earth, including trees, lakes, animals, people, and heavenly treasures, as well as geometric designs with lots of details. The large size pages are detailed without being so intricate that they would be difficult to see where to color the spaces. Each page is accented with gold print.

I love the way the devotions are written, and the topics covered really speak to my heart. Especially the ones related to weather, pets, and animals:

"We know that God will fashion the New Earth with fruit, trees, and renewed bodies of water for His chldren to enjoy. So why whouldn't we expect Him to include renewed animals? Lions, wolves, and lambs will live there, as well as leopards, goats, and calves (Isaiah 11:6)...All living beings will together enjoy our Creator and Redeemer and His fantastic new universe!" (p. 56)

Overall, Picturing Heaven provides a fun way to delve deeper into Bible study and reflection.

The publisher provided a review copy of Picturing Heaven.

Side Hustle

Side Hustle: From Idea to Income in 27 Days by Chris Guillebeau is a step-by-step guide to creating additional income. The author has created multiple streams of income for himself, and he shares his experience and assures readers that anyone can do it.

Whether or not you want to branch off from your 9-to-5 job, Side Hustle gives you the tools to get started launching almost any entrepreneurial venture. The book covers methods of creating passive income as well. The author emphasizes that by creating different means of bringing in money, you will attain more freedom and flexibility in your life.

The book lays out a 27-day plan, with clear explanations and action steps. The conversational style of the book and the easy to understand steps make Side Hustle a resource that anyone (no matter what your business experience is) can utilize. As a blogger, I find this book to be full of useful information to take my side hustle to the next level.

The publisher provided a review copy of Side Hustle.

Friday, September 29, 2017

The Proving

The Proving by Beverly Lewis is an Amish fiction story of perseverance. Mandy Dienner left her community years earlier, but returns after learning of the death of her mother. Mandy has inherited her mother's bed and breakfast, and she must successfully manage it for a period of one year as stipulated in her inheritance.

This book provides a different approach to Amish fiction, and instead of focusing on romance, the main focus is on rebuilding a family.

The characters in The Proving make it a very compelling story. After living as an Englisher for years, Mandy struggles to return to her community, and they struggle to accept her. Her dysfunctional family, including her estranged twin sister, provide the biggest conflict in the story. As Mandy faces challenges in running the bed and breakfast, she also slowly rebuilds her relationships with her family and the Amish community.

The publisher provided a review copy of The Proving.