Wordless Wednesday: Frog Oven

Frog Oven on the Farm

I have heard of Frog Bottom Farm, Stone Head in Indiana, Oven Fork in Kentucky and Frog City, Illinois. But I've never seen an outdoor frog oven before! My grandson came upon one and sat for a spell and pondered over the Frog Oven! What a site to behold!


My grandsons love frogs and toads. If you'd like to see more photos, visit Frogs and Toads with LadyD 


One of our favorite children's book is the 1971 Caldecott Honor Book,  Frog and Toad Are Friends by Arnold Lobel


Old Mac Donald, Little Green Frog and Five Little Speckled Frogs!

If you're really interested in frogs from frog bread to frog jokes, a must visit is http://allaboutfrogs.org/ 

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Carla McDougal: Back to School... Pray!

Yesterday was the first day of school in our area. I'm waiting this week for everyone to get into a routine and settle in before I start teaching piano in September for this new school year

KCWC has offered another wonderful article I am sharing with you. Wishing you and your family a very successful new school year!

Back to School ... Pray!
By Carla McDougal 

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. You shall teach them diligently to your children and shall talk of them when you sit in your house when you walk by the way when you lie down, and when you rise up.
Deuteronomy 6:5,7 

Excitement’s in the air! Anticipation rises. It’s that time of year when the kids go back to school.
Who can forget watching your child go to "big school" for the first time? I remember those bittersweet moments as each of my four children kissed me good-bye. I always knew that day would arrive, but nothing prepared me for the moment.
Elementary school seemed to fly by and almost overnight they were in junior high and then high school. And in a blink of an eye, they were off to college. Where did the years go?
I learned early on that when my children were away from home, praying for them comforted me. By turning them over to God I experienced a calm peace. Year after year my prayers intensified, yet remained the same…
  • Elementary School – Will he make a friend? Will he eat all his lunch, or just the cookies and chips? God help him to love You with all his heart.
  • Junior/Senior High –Will he make the right friends? Is he paying attention to the teacher? God, help him love You with all his soul.
  • College - Will he make some forever friends? Is he making the right life decisions? God, help him to love You with all his strength.
Just as our children face challenges, we as moms face our own set of challenges…
  • To pray over our children no matter where they are in life.
  • To be on our knees for those God entrusted to us.
  • To ultimately pray for each child to love Jesus with all his heart, soul, and mind!
  • Finally, to let them know we are praying for them each day! What a blessing it is to pray for our children.
I ask you to take advantage of this new season too. Do you need a fresh start? Where are you in your relationship with God? In my Bible study, Reflecting Him – Living for Jesus and Loving It, I encourage you to find Jesus in your everyday activities. He is there for us 24 hours a day, and He wants to hear our everyday prayers!
Author Bio

CARLA MCDOUGAL is founder of Reflective Life Ministries headquartered in the Houston, Texas area. Her true passion for her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, shines brightly, whether she is speaking or writing. She shares experiences from her own life to encourage women to live every day for Him. God is sending Carla around the world to speak to women from all walks of life—those living in the best of circumstances to those who have hit rock bottom. 

Carla’s book, Reflecting Him: Living for Jesus and Loving It, is a 10-week study that encourages you to open your eyes to God’s daily life lessons. The more you ask God to be in your life, the more you will recognize His hand on everything you do. For more information on a growing number of products from Reflective Life Ministries, and to see about booking Carla for an event or interview, go to www.reflectivelifeministries.org.

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Book Review: God Gave Us You

Daughter and Granddaughter: LadyD Books
God Gave Us You by Lisa Tawn Bergren and art by Laura J. Bryant
I am indeed a fortunate woman to have 3 vibrant grandsons, whom I adore, and then when our precious granddaughter arrived, we were overjoyed to see her and welcome this sweet baby into the family. This delightful board book sums it all up!

Product Description

When a charming polar bear cub climbs into bed one night, she asks her Mama a very important question:

“Where did I come from?”

As Mama bear tucks her youngest cub under the quilts, she lovingly explains, “We wanted you very, very much, and we are so very glad because…

God gave us you.”

Perfect for bedtime, naptime, storytime or anytime, God Gave Us You builds children’s self-esteem and assures each one that he or she truly is a treasured gift from the Lord.

From the Inside Flap

When a charming polar bear cub climbs into bed one night, she asks her Mama a very important question--one that little "human cubs" often wonder about, too: "Where did I come from?"

As Mama bear tucks her youngest cub under the quilts, she gently, tenderly, and reassuringly communicates the message loving parents everywhere (bears and non-bears alike) want their little ones to hear: "We wanted you very, very much, and we are so very glad because--"God gave us you."

Perfect for bedtime, naptime, storytime or anytime, God Gave Us You provides a valuable opportunity to build children's self-esteem every day and assure each one that he or she truly is a welcomed, precious, and treasured gift from the Lord.

Product Details

  • Reading level: Baby-Preschool
  • Board book: 22 pages
  • Publisher: WaterBrook Press; Brdbk edition (July 19, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307729915
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307729910

My Review

I am a huge fan of Lisa Tawn Bergren's stories, especially this one that conveys an all time message of loving, being loved and knowing that you are loved. The main characters, Mama Polar Bear and her Little Cub share a warm relationship with tender dialog that begins with a question and from their touches upon  a loving message that children are a gift from the Lord. 

I recommend God Gave Us You (board book) for gift-giving and an addition to your library for bedtime story sharing, plus Sunday Schools, Day Care for babies and toddlers and Christian families. Knowing God's love is a wonderful foundation to grow upon. I LOVED the book! *****

Thanks LibraryThing for sending God Gave Us You for review.

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

My Family from WiddlyTinks.com

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Luther and Roses

Beautiful Burgundy Rose: LadyD Books
Saturday Flowers http://blueberrycraftandhobbytime.blogspot.com

Lyrics to Buy Me A Rose

He works hard to give her all he thinks she wants
But it tears her apart 'cause nothing's for her heart
He pulls in late to wake her up with a kiss goodnight
If he could only read her mind, she'd say:


Buy me a rose
, call me from work
Open a door for me, what would it hurt
Show me you love me by the look in your eyes
These are the little things I need the most in my life

Now the days have grown to years of feelin' all alone

As she sits and wonders if all she's doin' is wrong
'Cause lately she'd try anything just to turn his head
Would it make a difference if she said, if she said:


And the more that he lives the less that he tries

To show her the love that he holds inside
And the more that she gives the more that he sees
This is the story of you:and me
So I bought you a rose on the way home from work
To open the door to a heart that I hurt
And I hope you notice this look in my eyes
'Cause I'm gonna make things right for the rest of your life
And I'm gonna hold you tonight, tonight
Do all those little things for the rest of your life
Quote It Saturday http://fredasvoice.blogspot.com


I just love Luther and the fragrance of roses. How about you?

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Life Lessons for Women

I just returned from my summer vacation. It was pleasant weather, seeing the refreshing Bay of San Francisco, along with spending quality time with special family members. Over time, perhaps I'll share a few highlights of my trip but for now, it's good to be back home. I'm just in time for the book meme  that LadyD Books participates with others on Friday!

The Friday 56:
Grab a book, any book.
Turn to page 56. 
Find any sentence that grabs you. Post it. 
Add the post url, not your blog url @ Freda's Voice

Book by Stephanie Marston, Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen

 My choice this week is not just one sentence because I just couldn't stop... So, here goes:

"Mom had a standard line she used to politely decline requests. "That won't work out for me, she'd say. If the caller persisted she repeated the line, "It just won't work out for me." My sisters and I used to laugh at the vagueness of the phrase, but now I understand the sheer genius of it. It says nothing but conveys everything. As an added bonus, it leaves nothing open to argument. If it won't work out for you that's pretty much the end of it. What more is there to say?"
I think this book is a good one for gift-giving. Not all Chicken Soup for the Soul books in the series in enjoyable reading for everyone. My Aunt gave this to me in the summer of '07 and I'm reading it again because of the questions asked within the pages. I like them for indeed, they're thought-provoking. 

Here are some examples: 

1. What are the three things I've accomplished in my life that I'm most proud of?

2. How do the people in my life see me? What do they come to me for?

3. What are my top 10 core values and principles?

4. When I'm 80, what will I regret having done or not done?

5. What am I currently doing that is absolutely right for me?

Have you read Life Lessons for Women: 7 Essential Ingredients for a Balanced Life? Perhaps you have asked yourself a question or two? Please, let me know.


“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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The Friday 56: Barbara Kingsolver

Paperback Book by New York Times Bestselling Author of Prodigal Summer

 The Friday 56, with hostess Freda's Voice, is a book meme that I enjoy because I get to see what other peeps are reading. I'm going on vacation for awhile and will return to start teaching piano and music in kindergarten soon. For now, I wanted to share a bit about this book. 

"This is the story of a lovable, resourceful 'instant mother,' one who speaks, acts and learns for herself, becoming an inspiration for us all." -Glamour

Here's what's on Page 56:

" I've got some peanut-butter crackers," Mattie said, leaning over Turtle. "Will she eat peanut butter?"

"She eats anything. Just don't let her get hold of anything you don't want to part with. Like your hair," I said. Mattie's braid was swinging into the danger zone.

About The Book:

Clear-eyed and spirited, Taylor Greer grew up poor in rural Kentucky with the goals of avoiding pregnancy and getting away. But when she heads west with high hopes and a barely functional car, she meets the human condition head-on. By the time Taylor arrives in Tucson, Arizona, she has acquired a completely unexpected child, a three-year-old American Indian girl named Turtle, and must somehow come to terms with both motherhood and the necessity of putting down roots. Hers is a story about love and friendship, abandonment and belonging, and the discovery of surprising resources in apparently empty places.

The book really has some great reviews. Have a look from Publishers Weekly:

"This funny inspiring book is a marvelous affirmation of risk-taking, commitment and everyday miracles... An overwhelming delight, as random and unexpected as real life."
Have you read this one or perhaps another book by Barbara Kinsolver? Let me know with a comment below.


“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

My Main Man

My Main Man: Character Study

Character, A Basic Element of Short Story

Most of the components involved in creating a successful short story can be traced to five basic elements. They are what we call, THE BASIC ELEMENTS of the SHORT-STORY

Character -Who the story is about.
Conflict-What central problem causes the action.
Setting-Where the action takes place.
Point of View-who is telling the story.
Theme-What the story is really about.

The most important element of the short story is character-the people the story is about. The main character of a story is called the protagonist. 

In the best stories, characters come alive. We care about their dreams, fears, and frustrations just as if they were real people in our own lives.

Characterization is the process by which authors communicate their characters to readers. Direct characterization occurs when the author tells readers about a character directly. Here's an example:

Dr. Smith was the meanest man in town.
Indirect-characterization lets readers draw their own conclusions from clues in the story, such as a character’s appearance, tone of voice, or behavior:

Dr. Smith laughed meanly and kicked a stray dog out of the way as he walked down the street.

When I think of all the main characters in my writings, I usually love him/her so much. I picture every detail of them. I want them to be human and vulnerable and especially to be hero-like in solving their own problems. So I ask myself, what is her most cherished belief? In other words, what does she value the most?

I ask myself, what does my main character want? What is standing in my protagonist’s way in achieving his dreams? But sometimes I reflect on books and movies that I’ve seen where the protagonist isn’t very likable. At the beginning, Scarlet O'Hara from Gone with the Wind acts horrible but at other times she seems so nice but there’s always that underlying motive.
Reflecting on great screenwriters, I’m thinking that anything that Tom Hanks plays in is real good, as the main character.

Can you think of a main character in a book that you didn’t like?

Sometimes the main character has a habit of doing whatever he wants to do but in writing, I’m creating him to do what I want him to do. I ask myself some more beneficial questions to develop his character like what is his greatest fear? I decide what are his strengths and weaknesses.

I continue with creating more layers to my main character in the story. What is the worst thing that can happen to my character and why? And finally, what is the internal conflict he will need to overcome? 

Now, I have my character outline in place and a magazine picture of what he/she looks like. My story is beginning because I have taken the time to build my leading character, my man!
Leave a comment, sharing how you go about developing your protagonist, if you want.

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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To Leave A Comment Or Not

Just a thought...

I remember the days of handwritten letters. I would write my 93 year old mother-in-law and my Auntie who is 86 on the prettiest letter paperWe waited with time, anxiously wondering what the reply would entail.  

As I was reflecting on my early days of blogging, I was self taught and followed along with good advice from some professional bloggers, and still do.

I enjoyed leaving comments of thanks, praise and encouragement along the way and was always grateful to receive a kind reply. My dear readers, you have made the journey worthwhile. And I am truly grateful I have not been hit hard with spammers and unkind notes as others have.

But then I started noticing a shift in pattern, a huge change if you will. The pace of modern technology increasing with many platforms of social networking and the thought that you can be heard around the world is mind boggling to me. Even FaceBook, Twitter and Google ground rules are forever changing.

And yet, there seems to be no internet police watching over my shoulder letting me know what the guide\lines are. Just my own conscience dictates with my own creativity what I choose to write about.

But then, when I look back on all my interests and the fun I've had in participating in various themes, for instance book memes, photography contests, giveaways and such, sometimes I see how easy it is to be distracted from the main thing, and for me that is writing.

When I look at the inner workings of blogger, to view my stats and see my followers, I'm so appreciative that I made it this far in a world wide communicative family. As I look deeper, I notice that some of the blogs I follow, well there number of followers have increased to triple and quadruple numbers. I seldom hear from them. In addition to "no comment" on my blog, I am not listed in their blogroll. I conclude that everyone is so busy and there is no need to reciprocate. Now, I get it.

After having one of those "a-ha moments," I decided to incorporate a technique they use on Twitter where you unfollow people who are not following you. My, my... now we can pick and choose what interests us in commonality of purpose. Perhaps it's about what we like and what they have to
say and how they say it.

Yes, on a positive note, I count my blessings and have made a list of the pros on some of the perks to blogging:

Because of the Internet, I have friends around the world and many of them stop by and comment. I have grown as a writer and a teacher. People buy the products I endorse and that is a good thing because there is trust and the resources are good. And I have tremendous personal satisfaction in helping others.
  So, if you have come to a crossroad in life, as I have, then at best, it is time to resharpen and refocus with determination, setting good habits for yourself on who to follow... or is it really a numbers game I ask you?

Remember the Golden Rule? Jesus said, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

The Mahabharata tells followers of sum of Dharma: Do naught unto others which would cause you pain if done to you."

The Yoruba of Nigeria say, "One going to take a pointed stick to pinch a baby bird should first try it on himself to feel how it hurts."

And the Lakota religious leader Black Elk taught, "All things are our relatives; what we do to everything, we do to ourselves. All is really One."

For those who choose to stop by, commenting frequently and from time to time, and you know who you are, I thank you for sharing a little corner of your world with me.


“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Saturday Peachy Cream Rose

LadyD Books: Peach Cream Rose
Peachy Cream Rose with a Brush of Yellow
 "If I could have a rose for every time I thought of you, The world would be empty of them."
 -- Source Unknown

I'm hoping this Peachy Cream Rose will put a smile on your face because for the most part, it hasn't felt like summer here in sunny California. We've had glorious days with mild temps but soon summer will be over and the kiddos will head back to school... me, too! Piano lessons begin, as well as the wee kindergarten children learning their rhythm with songs from you know who. I can't wait!

In the meantime, feel like making some rose petal hand cream? The instructions can be found at Pioneer Thinking
In fact, there are tons of info on the internet regarding rose petal this and that!

I suppose the best book on roses can be found on Amazon.

The Ultimate Rose Book (Including Miniature, and Wild-All Shown in Color and Selected for Their Beauty, Fragrance, and)

LadyD Books is participating in:
Flowers on Saturday and Quote It Saturday

Have you been enjoying your summer? Happy Saturday!



“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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The Friday 56: Water for Elephants

Cover Artist: Charles Mason

LadyD Books is participating, along with Freda,  in a weekly book meme called The Friday 56

I apologize dear readers for missing out on your selections this past week. My sister-in-law had a massive stroke. Life can be so fragile at times. She is making progress during her stay at rehab. It is a balance, I suppose to walk about and smell the roses and then to come inside and chat on the internet with all the lovely peeps in my life, thank you.

When I am able to join in, I love to share what holds my interest. I must say, Sara Gruen's Historical Romance Novel, Water for Elephants, has captured my complete attention!

You can find the excerpt on Page 56 here:

"He grabs me by the scruff and smashes my face into the door frame. With his  other hand, he yanks open the sliding door and 
chucks me inside. I fall forward, my hands outstretched."

 -- The story is told as a series of memories by Jacob Jankowski, a "ninety or ninety-three-year-old" man who lives in a nursing home.

I'm interested to know what book you are holding as well.

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Book Review: My First Hands-On Bible

My First Hands-On Bible
Tyndale Kids
 I received a preschool skills checklist from Leapfrog and one of the points discussed, holding a book properly and turning pages.
I want to share a good one with you. 

While you're here, have a look at the wooden toy my grand kids love to play with! 

Noah's Ark: LadyD Books
Noah's Ark

Book Description

    Reading level: Ages 4-8
    Hardcover: 416 pages
    Publisher- Tyndale Kids (July 1, 2011)
    Language: English
    ISBN-10: 1414348304

    ISBN-13: 978-1414348308


From the Back Cover

"The Bible young children can really get their hands on!

Go from just reading the Bible with your kids to experiencing it! My First Hands-On Bible does what no other Bible can—it brings the Bible to life with fun activities and games that tie directly to the Bible stories...

With My First Hands-On Bible, kids will get into the Bible, and the Bible will get into their hearts, giving them a priceless foundation of faith in God."


My Review

I've been looking for a good children's Bible for my grandsons who are 3 and 5 years of age. I found it and preschoolers will experience so much fun learning about 85 Bible stories from  
from the New Living Translation. What I like most about the Bible for children is that there is a connection with Bible stories and kids using fun games and activities; a winning combination. 

Here are some positive features that I gleaned in reading My First Hands-On Bible.

+ Simple text with Bible scriptures from Genesis-Revelation

+ Simple “Hands on activity”

+ Simple learning point reinforced with rhyming prayer

+ Simple questions focused on God to talk about

+ Simple interactive activities, reinforcing learning and application

+ Simple Sunday School Songs to sing!

+ Simple favorite of mine is Connecting with Jesus through Bible story

With simple text, the engaging reader will stay with the words, along with soft illustrations drawing preschoolers in to focus on hearing more of the Bible story.

I recommend this great resource for any church group, Sunday school class, families, and gift-giving. 

***** Book! It has value and quality.

Copy provided by Tyndale  for my book review.

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Wordless Wednesday: Lobster Press and Fest

 Maine's Lobster Festival

Children's Artwork

Children's Activity

 Wordful Wednesday

My daughter is a huge fan of children's books. Having majored in English, plus a Master's Degree in English Literature... I know, brag, brag, brag. What's a mother to do?!

Did I mention she taught the elementary grades also? Hence, here she is at the lobster festival providing crafts for the little people. So very bright and cheery and delightfully colorful!

Well, I started thinking of what rhymes with lobster fest. You know how one's mind works at times. And I came up with lobster press. I had an "a-ha moment!" My gosh, in case you're a wee bit interested, here's a running list of books recommended by Lobster Press!

1. Board Books

2. Fiction
lobster press-fiction books

3. Non Fiction
Exploring History-Making Good Choices

4. Books in French

What's been happening with you mid-week? Have you looked at some amazing book cover art lately?


“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Wordless Wednesday: Goose's Story

Cover of Cover of Goose's Story
Wordless Wednesday:
I love this photo of mom, dad and babies!

Wordful Wednesday:

I found a beautiful children's picture book at our library called "Goose's Story" by Cari Best. You must see this 5* book with excellent writing of words that will warm your heart.

"Goose's story is true. She came on a Sunday. We would only guess about how she'd hurt her foot. Had she skidded on the ice as she landed? Could it have been a snapping turtle? Or had some leftover fishing line wrapped itself around her foot? Whatever it was, the goose with one foot became our spring and then our summer that year. Who would have thought she'd become our inspiration for all times, too."
 Cari Best has written Taxi! Taxi!, Three Cheers for Catherine the Great!, and Shrinking Violet!

Holly Meade has illustrated Hush! and Steamboat!

I have always loved birds. We've seen geese at the zoo, the Safari Park and at one of our favorite ponds nearby. How about you?

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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Book Review: Thunder Of Heaven

How It Came About

Awhile back, Anne Staszalek who is a Marketing Associate for AuthorsOnTheWeb , sent me a copy of Tim LaHaye's new book and asked if I would be interested in the story and wanted to post a review. You bet and right away, I said yes!

About The Book
Best-known for the “Left Behind” series, LaHaye and his co-author Parshall introduced readers to “The End” series with last year’s EDGE OF APOCALYPSE. Now, in THUNDER OF HEAVEN (Zondervan; on-sale June 28th), lead character Joshua Jordan is back. In an epic story ripped from the headlines of world events and filtered through Scriptural prophecy, THUNDER OF HEAVEN chronicles the earth shattering events that eventually lead up to the Apocalypse foretold in Revelation.

According to TV personality Glenn Beck, “Tim LaHaye’s books always entertain, educate and thrill, but THUNDER OF HEAVEN takes it to a new level.”

Video Teasers
1. Joshua Jordan at the White House – Thunder of Heaven

Joshua Jordan reports to the Round Table about thwarted terrorist attacks from al-Qaeda. Teaser trailer from Thunder of Heaven, book two in The End Series by New York Times Bestselling author Tim LaHaye. -

2.  Joshua Jordan in Israel – Thunder of Heaven
  Joshua Jordan reports to the Round Table from Israel just outside Tel Aviv regarding potential conspiracy attacks against the US government. Teaser trailer from Thunder of Heaven, book two in The End Series by New York Times Bestselling author Tim LaHaye. 

3.  Joshua Jordan in prison – Thunder of Heaven
Joshua Jordan reports to the Round Table from prison confirming the Iranians have weapons of mass destruction. Teaser trailer from Thunder of Heaven, book two in The End Series by New York Times Bestselling author Tim LaHaye.

Book Characters

Joshua Jordan Photo

Col. Joshua Jordan. MIT grad. Retired Colonel US Air Force. Former Air Force reconnaissance pilot. US defense contractor dealing with DC intrigue. His company, Jordan Technologies, is a leading provider of defense systems for the US government.  

Abigail, Jordan's wife is an accomplished lawyer, wealthy and powerful.

Debra, Jordan's daughter, is a West Point student.

Cal, Jordan's son is at Liberty University.

My Review 

Josh Jordan is the top defense contractor. He has
developed an extremely sophisticated missile defense system for the U.S. and her closest allies. The RTS (return to sender) has been placed in commercial and military planes to direct enemy missiles back to their point of origin. After the apparent failure of the system to save an outbound airliner from Chicago, Josh's political enemies seek to blame the RTS system. 

Combine that with nuclear threat, political corruption and attempts of global dominance, there is a dramatic and exciting conclusion to the book and sets up just who may well be the anti-Christ in LaHaye's next book. Well written and very believable. Keeps you interested and on the edge of your seat.

It does a great job of blending the story w/ political scenarios that are relevant to our time. Amazing 5* book!

This review is my opinion and I was not compensated in any way.
I highly recommend this one. Thanks Anne for the opportunity!

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis

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