Hello and welcome back! Today, I have another fun book review for you and oh! This book *eyes tearing up already* will hit you right in the heart. I just recently met this sweet author through the blog and I am so excited to share with you about her novel, O To Be Like Thee!
O To Be Like Thee
How Deep Love Runs
By Kassie Angle (Published 2018)
Wartime friendships are almost legendary. There’s nothing quite like the bond between soldiers who know their lives depend on each other.
That’s the thing, though. Your best friend’s life depends on you. That’s not always an easy responsibility.
And to make things worse, there’s that little blue-eyed boy in Texas who recognizes your uniform and not your face, and somehow his broken heart learns to love you…
Okay, so I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before or not, but I love the army and I love military medical units, regardless of branch. I love a novel about medics (I mean, Seth is one of my favorite characters from my books and he’s a doctor’s aide 😉). This book combines these passions and oh! I love it so much!
We follow the story of LT Corban “Corey” Schreiber, a medic stationed in Afghanistan and his relationship with a new friend, Mayson McKinley (Already, I love this guy! Mayson…kinda partial to that name even if the spelling is different…). I used to live near a military base and I have army in my family, so this story really hit home for me.
Kassie handled topics such as blaming one’s self for someone’s death, mild PTSD, grieving a loved one and how things change after deployment for a service member. And she did it very well! Having been raised on army bases across the globe, Kassie knows what she is talking about. And her writing style is to the point and heart wrenching. Few books actually make me cry. I can think of…five that made me cry and one of them was mine, so it doesn’t count, lol! This book made me cry several times. It’s so…real. Even though the story is from Corey’s Point of View (POV), I felt I could connect with him. She did something few books I’ve read about the military have done. She made Corey human, not some larger than life superhero who can handle anything. He had struggles. He had feelings. He wasn’t a robot, but a person.
While there is some blood mentioned in the story, and injuries discussed, nothing was exceedingly graphic. I would read it to my younger siblings, no problem.
I will not forget this story. It hit home for me on a deep level and brought me to an even stronger appreciation for our servicemen. I encourage you, click this link and order you a copy of O To Be Like Thee. It’s a 400+ page novel, so it may take a while to finish, but it is worth it. READ THIS!
…Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
(King James Bible)
Until Next Time,
And you’re back for another post! How lovely that you chose to join me! And I have something special for you! A New Writing Series! I can’t wait to share it with you as it is a topic I’m super excited about! So, let’s explore this new series, shall we?
You’ve got the perfect story. Your characters are so perfect. Your setting is just right…now if only you could come up with a title!
First of all, go ahead and start writing so you won’t lose that brilliant idea. The title may just come to you as you write. This is very hard for me. The title helps me know where I’m going, but sometimes, I’ve had to just write and get my title later.
Next, make a list of the things that you want to communicate through your book.
Example from The Land of Cotton:
Is music going to be a part of your story? Then pick a theme song, study the lyrics and pick your title. That’s what I did with The Land of Cotton. (Oh, I wish I was in The Land of Cotton…) It personifies everything I wanted for my book and it sets the mood very nicely.
Not so big on the “song” title? Try an important phrase you may use in the story. “They Need to See Our Loyalty”, “How’d This All Get Started?” or “Liberty is the Objective,” may have worked for my book.
Or I could have picked a person to focus on. “Seth Mason and the Stonewall Brigade,” “Fighting for Both Dixies,” “Michael’s Battle,” etc. Of course, if I had done that, the story would have had to be written from that person’s point of view exclusively. Keep that in mind.
I could have even gone with an idea from the story. “Fighting the Invader,” “States Rights or Death,” “Tarheels in Virginia,” “A Soldier Twice,” or “Southern Patriots” would have worked.
My story was set in Four Tree Springs, North Carolina, largely at Shady Grove Plantation. “Warriors of the Grove,” “Four Tree Springs at War,” or “May 20th, 1861” (The Date North Carolina seceded) pose possibilities.
Historic quotes are good too. I think you get the general idea. Inspiration is out there, but sometimes you have to dig. Or maybe your title is the easy part, and the story is the hard one! It can work both ways. 😉
Ultimately, it’s your book. There’s nothing wrong with asking others for input. Describe the idea behind your story to a friend and ask for suggestions.
Until next time,
I did it! Ryana Lynn, did you see that! I am actually typing! Y’all, this laptop thing is so interesting! I’ve never seen anything like this before and I’m surprised at how easy it is! Oh…I suppose I should introduce myself! My name is Dixianna Mason of Four Tree Springs, N.C. Ryana Lynn told me she has written a series of books about my family, but not all of you have read them yet. She thought perhaps you should meet me and get to know me a little better. Well, I’m nothing special, just, well, me! I just happen to live during a war…just like you!
Oh, Ryana Lynn says I’m rambling -What’s that thing you write when you laugh? Oh! - lol! That looks so cute!
Sorry, I digress. Anyway, you may wonder why I’ve taken over the blog! Well, today is my Birthday! Yes, I am a Valentine’s baby! And as a present to me, Ryana Lynn has sweetly allowed me to fulfill a dream of mine since…well, since I met her…lol! (I’m getting this!) If I lived in your year, I would be 173. But I’m not in your time, I am in mine. The year is 1864 and I just turned 18! And officially an old maid…like I said, there’s a war on, so…I’m waiting patiently.
Huh? Oh, all right, apparently, I need to end this introduction and get into my main topic. So, The End.
My topic today will be…me! I am going to tell you a little bit about myself and hope you find it interesting…
My Favorite Instrument. As you can see on the photograph above…wait, it’s not a photograph?...oh, the “blog graphic” above, I play the fiddle. I play hymns, folk music and patriotic pieces, usually with my brothers. I can play the piano, but fiddle is my passion…how do you…oh, there 😉 I love those little faces!
Okay, back to the fiddle. My fiddle was made in 1812 by my great-grandfather, Richard MacIntyre, for my grandmother, Dixianna Rose MacIntyre Mason, only she wasn’t married at the time. She was named for her parents, Richard (Dixie is a nickname for Richard, don’t ask me how that got started) and Anna. Maw-Maw has always gone by Anna, because she felt, when she was young, that Dixie was too masculine. How things do change!
Maw-Maw gave the fiddle to my father when he was thirteen, and he passed it along to me when I was thirteen, though I was playing it by the time my arms were long enough to hold it.
My Horse. Do any of you like horses? I do! My horse is a slate gray Mustang Stallion named Confederate 😉 My Papa Rains (My mother’s father) bought him for me right before the war began three years ago. Confederate is quite playful, though if you had seen him when I first got him, you wouldn’t have thought so. He had a rough life, poor baby, but now, he gets all the love and attention I give him and plenty of pasture to run in. His favorite treats are apple peels and carrot skins. I know, I’d love to give him the whole thing, but with the war on, we need all the food we can find and there’s no money for extras. Not that I’m complaining.
My Favorite Color. Contrary to what one might think, my favorite color is purple. Many assume it’s green, because of my eyes and my red hair and the fact that green looks the best on me, but purple is my favorite. My favorite dress was purple…my brothers bought me the material for my birthday…sure miss that dress. Ryana Lynn says you should read book 3 if you want to learn more about what happened to it…
My Favorite Sibling…
Just making sure you were paying attention! I don’t have a favorite sibling and Ryana Lynn says I can’t tell you much because of something known as spoilers. But I will tell you this: Growing up in a house full of boys is difficult, but also quite the adventure! I used to loath the slamming of doors, but with the war on now…I kinda miss it.
One more fun fact and then I shall…how did she put it…oh! I shall “Wrap-up” this post. You people of the 21st Century sure have some interesting ways of expressing yourselves! But it’s also quite intriguing!
I’m rambling again.
My Favorite Song. Hymn wise, it would be What Wondrous Love is This? So hauntingly beautiful. Patriotic wise, I like The Homespun Dress and of course, Dixieland 😉 And I was born on a frosty morning! I also love the North Carolina War Song. It’s to the tune of Bonnie Annie Laurie, a Scottish folk song that my Maw-Maw Mason adores. It’s not well known outside my state and Ryana Lynn said that in your time, most people have never heard of it. It’s so pretty though…now I think I’m gonna cry!
I suppose this is where I “wrap-up!” I hope you enjoyed my very first (and probably only) blog post! I thoroughly enjoyed it! But, I must rush back to my world…the troops are still in winter quarters, but soon, the fighting will resume…I encourage you to take a moment to thank God that the war your country is fighting now isn’t being fought on your home soil. I’m not so fortunate…
Have a blessed day,
P.S. Below is my favorite Psalm. I hope you enjoy!
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands. Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
King James Version
A Note From Ryana Lynn: Here's Dixie's song, The North Carolina War Song. She couldn't figure out how to post it, lol ;)
Hello! It’s so good to have you back today! I love books (as if you didn’t know that😉) and I love answering questions about books! Recently I saw a post about the 20 Questions Book Tag and I thought it looked fun! I decided to change up the questions a little (and cut down the number or this post would be way too long!) so here we go!
9. What book are you looking forward to reading? I Varina by Ruth Painter Randall. I’ve been looking for this book for years and finally have a copy!
10. What is your favorite book by your favorite author? Three People by Isabella Alden. This is part of the Ester Reid series (though I can’t remember how it links in) and is a beautiful example of how your birth circumstances don’t have to dictate your outcome…and has a great message against drinking!
11. What was a series you were sad to see come to an end? The Moody Series by Sarah Maxwell and The Sisters in Time Series by various authors. I really enjoyed both of these middle grade series and would not be sad to see new editions join the family!
12. What was your favorite non-fiction read? Beloved Bride by Bill Potter (see my review here!) Everyone should read this book, no matter where you are from! It’s so good!
13. Your favorite book on writing? Did God Put a Book in You by Jerry Ross. It’s really good and a great resource to keep on hand, especially for beginning writers! It’s only $10.00, so you should check this page and get you a copy!
14. Favorite Book of the Bible (Old and New Testament)? 1&2 Samuel (They go together 😉) and Luke! I love reading about David and his mighty men (a much better account than Robin Hood, which I might kinda like if it weren’t for the stealing part…). The best part is that it’s completely true! I love how God inspired the writer to not only show David’s victories and failures, but how to regain fellowship with God after sinning. And Luke…ah, I love Dr. Luke! I love his medical view of the gospels and his account the crucifixion and resurrection are by far my favorite. And then we can hope over to Acts for more of his intriguing writing style!
15. What book is taking you a long time to get through? Jefferson Davis American by William J. Cooper Jr. It’s really good, but it’s thick and has small print 😉 Hopefully, I can put a dent in it this year!
So there you have it, my 15 bookish answers to 15 bookish questions!
And here’s one of my favorite verses from one of my favorite books of the Bible.
And David said, What have I now done? Is there not a cause?
1 Samuel 17:29
King James Bible
Have a Blessed Day!
Hello and welcome to my second devotion! I’m super excited to share this with you ladies specifically. I’m still stuck on my Word of the Year, Stand, so ladies, here is a devotion just for you.
She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
(King James Bible)
We know that our place in the home is under the man; that’s not my opinion, that’s God’s Word. End of story. However, that doesn’t mean that we are not allowed to stand up for what is right, in a proper, ladylike way and with the proper audience. I could do a whole devotion on that topic alone, but today, I want to point out a few things that we as women in today’s culture need to stand up for.
Ladies, stand up for FEMININITY.
Ooooo…that scary word, femininity. Somehow, it often gets confused with the modern feminist movement. In reality, they are polar opposites. It’s sad, but today, we live in a world that says you are not a strong person unless you have been to college, have a successful job (extra points if it is typically reserved for men), don’t marry until you are in your 30’s (if at all) and have maximum three kids (that’s pushing it though. Or, bonus points if you decide NOT to have any).
What a sad society!
Ladies, it’s high time we stand up for the calling God has placed on us: “…The young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.” (Titus 2:4b-5, King James Bible)
There is no shame in dressing like a woman. There is no shame in marrying a man and looking to him as your protector and your head. There is no shame in raising children. Don’t let anyone shame you into being anything less than what God has created you to be: A Woman. A Lady. An Embracer of Femininity.
Ladies, Stand up for Femininity by:
-Studying Biblical femininity. (The Bible is the best source of course, but this book and this blog are great resources!)
-Encourage other so embrace Biblical femininity!
Ladies, stand up for LIFE.
What could be more important then human life? Regardless of race, nationality or creed, everyone is born with the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. But where does life begin? People argue about this all the time and sadly, many women will say that life begins after birth. It’s time for us Christian ladies to stand up for the unborn and proclaim the truth: Life begins at conception. In fact, if you want to get technical, it actually starts before that! The Bible says, “Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them.” (Psalm 139:16, Emphasis added; King James Bible) If God knows and has our members written in a book before they are even formed, don’t you think He considers even the earliest part of the pregnancy life? Who are we to define it differently?
As Christians, we must stand up for the right of the unborn, the elderly and the handicapped. They too have a right to live. We must speak up for those who haven’t found their voice yet and may never get the chance to use it, just as the resistance, the White Rose, of WWII gave a voice to the voiceless (the Jews, handicapped, etc.). Just because the government says something is legal (Germany legalized murdering Jews; America legalized abortion; other countries legalizing euthanizing the elderly/ill) doesn’t mean it is moral or allowed by God, our Supreme Authority.
Ladies, stand up for Life by:
-Talking to others about pro-life when the topic comes up. Remember, don’t argue, but kindly explain the biblical principles of life in Christian Love.
-Do you blog? Post a Pro-Life themed article!
-Participate in Life Chain Sunday.
(See this post for more on Pro-Life.)
Ladies, stand up for your FAITH.
For years, people have fought Christianity. People naturally push against anything that convicts them of their sin. That is no reason for us to back down to them. Now, that’s also not to say that we are to mount pulpits or soap boxes and scream for our religious rights like wild animals! The Bible says, “For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father's, and of the holy angels.” (Luke 9:26, King James Bible)
While we are not called to be preachers, we are called to be witnesses of the Grace of God. We should never be ashamed to speak up for our Lord and Savior and the blessings He has given us. As in everything else, there is a proper way for ladies to stand up for our Faith.
Ladies, Stand up for your Faith by:
-Sharing your testimony with saved and unsaved alike. Your personal salvation testimony may be an encouragement to others to share their testimony or it may help someone else to see how much they need God in their life.
-Are you a writer? Testify for the Lord in your writing! If you are a Christian, this is the most important qualification you have as a writer. Never hide your light for fear of man!
-Are you a blogger? Share your testimony there! (See mine here)
-Do you have a friend you know is unsaved? Seek them out and share the gospel with them. I know this can be hard, believe me, but there is nothing comparable with the joy of seeing someone come to Christ!
Ladies, it’s high time we Stand for the Right and let our Lights shine in the darkness of this world.
How will you choose to stand today?
Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.
Galatians 5:1 (King James Bible)
Until Next Time, God Bless!
Christian. American. Southern. Author.