Book Chat

This month’s book reviews; contain affiliate links.

Lots of reading this month, so let’s jump in:

Are you related to someone on the autism spectrum? It’s becoming more and more common these days, although it’s still largely misunderstood. Living with someone on the spectrum is often an unappreciated existence, filled with hard work.

Enter The Autism Sisterhood by Michele Brook. Michele has two children on the autism spectrum, and if I did, I’d want her in my sisterhood for sure. The overwhelming feel of this book is positive and cheery – something that is sorely needed by parents. She lists some specific ideas and resources, and always has such a hopeful tone.

It’s not perfect: a $10 book that’s less than 50 pages is a bit of a stretch, and it needs an editor (there’s some to/too confusion and misplaced punctuations, for instance), but for tone alone I have to recommend this one.


Christians know we’re to trust God in all circumstances. Yet that’s often harder to do than the pat sayings and cliches might suggest. Faithful is about three women in challenging situations:  one has the dubious “joy” of being maid of honor in her younger sister’s wedding on her own 40th birthday, yet she’s still single. Where is God?

Another catches her seemingly perfect husband involved in a relationship with a member of the church worship team.

And the final member of the trio feels awful because her husband, a basically decent guy, refuses to go to church with her or share in any part of her faith.

Where is God in situations like these? And when life sends us tough times, how can we remain faithful to Him?

I enjoyed this book, as it shows us some ways that some real-live women find the answers to those questions. It’s a light read, yet it deals with topics we face every day.

Thanks to Thomas Nelson publishers for a review copy.


There’s no denying that A Year with God is a bit of a “different” devotional book. With titles such as “some of you are going to die” and “a dried-up, childless tree,” you can see that. But overall, I like it.

Things I like: each reading begins with a Bible passage. In fact, the Bible reading is often almost as long as the devotional itself. All passages are from the Old Testament, which tends to be overlooked in devotionals. Yet there’s no denying that the Old Testament makes up more than half our Bibles. We shouldn’t ignore these passages just because they are “hard.”

I also like the way there are no dates on the readings, just “day 225,” “day 354,” etc. When readings are dated, I tend to feel defeated if I miss a day. No such problem here.

Things I’m not so fond of are:  many versions of the Bible are used. You’ll get a range all the way from King James to The Message, and this seems to me to ensure that no one is going to be entirely pleased.

Also, as alluded to above, some of the passages are very obscure. I appreciate the variety of passages, but some of them failed to have much resonance for me.

Overall I would give this book 4 stars. It is based on God’s words, and those words are bound to be helpful to us in some way when we read and meditate on them.

Thanks to the BookSneeze program for a review copy.


Animal lovers (as well as tender-hearted folks everywhere) will love Blind Hope: An Unwanted Dog and the Woman She Rescued. It’s the story of Laurie, a young woman who has struggled her entire life, as told by her friend Kim. Laurie has a dog, Mia, who has a multitude of health issues, one of which is being blind. As she helps Mia through her struggles, Laurie comes to see that there are many parallels between her relationship with Mia and God’s relationship with us.

This was a quick, easy read. I would have preferred to read a bit less about Laurie and Kim, and a bit more about Mia – but that’s just me.

You’ll root for Laurie and Mia, even as you realize how similar all of us are in many ways to helpless, dependent pets.

“I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review”


4 thoughts on “Book Chat

  1. Animal stories almost always make me cry, but this one sounds like it’s weighted more toward inspiring than heartbreaking! Thanks for the heads up.

  2. I have a friend with a son on the Spectrum, and I’m always interested in her perspectives and parenting stories and find I have a lot to learn from her about understanding and compassion.

    Happy reading,
    Dawn, 5M4B

  3. The dog books sounds interesting. The autism one, too, but probably it’s hard to find. Since nearly all I post about now are books, I’ve just put my nightstand link to the newest one.

  4. “I would have preferred to read a bit less about Laurie and Kim, and a bit more about Mia…”

    Agreed! I read that book as well and was disappointed that the book about a dog and her owner wasn’t really much about the dog. 🙁 Interesting tale, but I wanted more of Mia! She sounded like a sweet companion.

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