Tag Archives: Author

Exciting Book News!

The words were barely audible — a quiet whisper to a bruised heart.

Write.

The newborn stirred sleepily in my arms, a slice of my heart set out for the world to see. But there was another bit of my heart that wasn’t so noticeable — a piece that belonged to the baby not in my arms but in an infant-sized grave.

His death brought me to my knees. Like the tear-soaked tissues I clutched, the trite answers to “how I was doing” fell apart upon further prodding and yet, I wasn’t ready to wade deeper. I hid behind a veil of fake smiles and flimsy responses, a pretense at normality when I genuinely didn’t know what to feel.

But the word, write, burned ever stronger. As my fingers twitched and fluttered over the keys on my computer, a blog was born.

I started writing as a way to process my grief and as an outlet to the new world of motherhood in which I now stood. It was a type of motherhood that was significantly more messy, more broken, and more beautiful than I could have ever imagined. But it took time to discover that that beauty and pain could coexist — that they were, in fact, a glorious roadmap to a life lived more fully in Christ.

I uncovered grace as I wrote.

Grace as I dug deep and pushed my way through the walls of grief and into the comforting arms of Christ. Arms that hold tight. Arms that give freedom to grieve wholly and fully.

Grace to embrace the gift I’ve been given — a gift of tears and love that led me closer to the cross.

And out of those blog posts came a book about pregnancy loss, about stillbirth and miscarriage and clinging to Christ in the midst of it all.

A few months ago, I submitted my manuscript to an amazing, Canadian based competition called the “Women’s Journey Of Faith Contest.” Every year, the winner of this competition has their book published by Word Alive Press (an incredible opportunity for hopeful authors like myself.) I had previously entered this contest in 2017 and been shortlisted, so sending this in felt like a longshot. There are so many talented writers out there with stories that need to be heard. But I also knew that I needed to be faithful with the story that God had given me — and so, with a deep breath and more than a few prayers, I submitted my manuscript.

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January 2019: Reading Challenge Reviews

The first month of 2019 is drawing to a close and I can’t help but wonder where it’s disappeared to in such a hurry. So far, January has been full of cozy blankets and the remnants of my Christmas candy — a month of sugary fingers and good books.

This year’s 2019 Reading Challenge has started off to great success (the Facebook group has more than doubled in size) and my to-be-read pile grows longer daily. It’s a happy problem to have more books on your wish-list than you could ever hope to read. This year, I’ve decided to log my 52 books here on MommyMannegren. In addition to my reviews, I hope to jot down a few other suggestions for each of the categories if you’re looking for ideas for yourself.

Here are my January choices:
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Book Review: The Reckoning at Gossamer Pond

Every town holds secrets but only a few remain potent enough to wound and destroy a century later. The Reckoning of Gossamer Pond by Jaime Jo Wright illuminates the hidden parts of human nature — our desire to keep sin and shame hidden — as stories collide in this dual-narrative, century-crossing mystery.

From the Publisher:
“For over a century, the town of Gossamer Grove has thrived on its charm and Midwestern values, but Annalise Forsythe knows painful secrets, including her own, hover just beneath the pleasant facade. Yet her strange and sudden inheritance of a run-down trailer home–full of pictures, vintage obituaries, and old revival posters–leaves her wholly unprepared for how truly dark and deadly those secrets may be.

A century earlier, Gossamer Grove is stirred into chaos by the arrival of controversial and charismatic twin revivalists. The chaos takes a murderous turn when Libby Sheffield, while working at her father’s newspaper, receives an obituary for a reputable church deacon hours before his death. As she works with the deacon’s son to solve the crime, it becomes clear that a reckoning has come to town–but it isn’t until another obituary arrives at the paper that they realize the true depths of the danger they’ve waded into.

Two women, separated by a hundred years, must unravel the mysteries of their own town before it’s too late and they lose their future–or their very souls.”

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Book Review: Fiercehearted by Holley Gerth

If you’ve spent any time with me, you’ll know that I can fill endless hours with a good book. If a book is well written, I can immerse myself in almost any genre of writing and be completely satisfied. But if I’m being particularly truthful, there are genres that I don’t usually find myself drawn towards — and this is one of them.

Fiercehearted is written by Holley Gerth, a bestselling author, counselor, and life coach.

And I think if we’re being completely honest, the title “life coach” is why I tend to avoid books like this. It sets off too many alarms within my brain. I gear myself for books that are entirely “me-centric” rather than Christ-centric — a path I just don’t want to entertain. And I think that’s why I found myself so pleasantly surprised by Gerth’s book. Woven throughout each chapter is the call to embrace life as one who has been intricately designed by the Creator, and to live life fuller for Him.

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