Tag Archives: memoir

Book Spotlight — Point of View

22 Apr

Elisabeth Hasselbeck, former Survivor contestant and Fox News anchor, was known as a conservative voice on The View. She certainly voiced her own very decided opinions. But over the course of her life she discovered that the opinions of others were very important to her, until she discovered it was God’s point of view that really mattered. Hasslebeck’s new book, Point of View, explores her faith journey. While I have not read this book, I know that there are many who would be interested in it. Please check out the blurb and the author’s info and decide for yourself.

Recognized from her roles on Survivor, The View, and FOX & Friends, celebrity Elisabeth Hasselbeck presents a deeply intimate journey of faith, told through the important moments in her life.

“Point of view,” by definition, is a particular attitude or way of considering a matter. Through her nearly two decades of broadcasting, Elisabeth learned the necessity of extracting the point of view of the person being interviewed on a particular topic or subject or experience. Doing so allows you to see issues and truths through another’s eyes. It requires a shift in perspective to see the story through their lens.

In this illuminating book, Elisabeth walks through the times — from her national celebrity days to her newest role as CBO (Chief Breakfast Officer) — where she saw something differently than how God wanted her to, and the path back to His point of view was sometimes rocky but always revealing. Sometimes God’s intentions for her were clear, yet other times she encountered situations so uncomfortable and blurry that she could only ask for His wisdom.

In this book, Elisabeth welcomes you into the many different, and often divergent, points of view that she has witnessed and learned from along the way. It is a journey that brought her to the ultimate point of view that she discovered in the Word of God — that until she sees herself as He sees her, she is not seeing at all. As you read through the pages here, she invites you to make the same discovery for yourself.

Daytime Emmy Award winner Elisabeth Hasselbeck was a co-host on ABC’s The View for a decade before joining the morning lineup as co-host of Fox and Friends in 2013. The author of the New York Times bestseller The G-Free Diet, she is also the creator of NoGii, a line of all-natural gluten-free protein bars. She and her husband, Tim Hasselbeck, an ESPN NFL analyst and former NFL quarterback, have three children, Grace, Taylor, and Isaiah.


(Thanks to Waterbrook Multnomah for a complimentary copy.)



Book Spotlight: Almost Gone

21 Mar

As a busy book blogger I cannot read and review every book that comes into my house. *sigh*  Spotlights help get the word out about books that I have no idea when I will get read. These books are ones I know many of my readers would be interested in, so I don’t want them to be neglected. Almost Gone by John and Mackenzie Baldwin is one such book. Check out the blurb and author info, and then decide if this book is one you’d like to read.


This is the never-before-told, riveting true story about a teenage Christian girl who was seduced online by a charming young Muslim man from Kosovo, and her father who ultimately worked with the FBI to save her from disappearing forever.

The Baldwins were a strong Christian family, living in Plano, Texas. When their seventeen-year-old daughter, Mackenzie, met Aadam in a random-match online chat room, she fell for his good looks, his charm, and his respectful conversation. He told her he lived in New York, and they began an online friendship.

But over the course of a few months, Aadam revealed that he actually lived in Kosovo and had only pretended to live in New York so Mackenzie would keep chatting with him. The more attached she became to Aadam, the more detached she became from her family.

John and Stephanie, Mackenzie’s parents, had no clue what was behind their daughter’s change in personality, her surprising interest in Islam, her suddenly modest dress, and her withdrawal from friends and family. When Mackenzie’s attachment to Aadam increased even more and they became “engaged,” she started making plans to secretly fly to Kosovo where she and Aadam would be married.

But twenty-five days before Mackenzie was scheduled to fly to Kosovo, John found out about his daughter’s dangerous plan when three of her friends came forward. John contacted the FBI, and asked for help. Though the FBI did not believe Aadam was trying to radicalize Mackenzie, they were concerned about his intentions, as that part of Kosovo was known for sex-trafficking, human-trafficking, and citizenship frauds. Kosovo was no place for an unaccompanied, naïve teenager to secretly travel and marry a stranger she knew only through online chats. Within the limited time remaining before Mackenzie’s departure, John and Stephanie had to confront Mackenzie and stop her before she would be lost to them forever.

Told from the viewpoint of both father and daughter, Almost Gone follows Mackenzie’s network of lies and deceit and her parents’ escalating bewilderment and alarm. More than a cautionary tale, this is the incredible story of unconditional parental love, unwavering faith, and how God helped a family save their daughter from a relationship that jeopardized not only her happiness, but also her safety.

John Baldwin is a deacon and has served in many ministries at Parkway Hills Baptist Church in Plano, Texas. He also serves on the board of directors for High Adventure Treks for Dads and Daughters and Dads and Sons (HATS). This organization promotes father/daughter and father/son communication, leadership, and relationships through shared adventures such as white water kayaking, rock climbing, and other outdoor activities. By day, John is a business technology consultant working with the largest credit card banks.

Mackenzie Baldwin is a college student pursuing a double major in Psychology and Child Development. She is adventurous, enjoying activities such as rock climbing, camping, backpacking, and water sports. She is scuba certified and as a certified skydiver, she has made more than fifty solo jumps.

(A big thank you to Howard books for a complimentary copy of this book. I did not read this book, so this post is not intended as a review or recommendation.)

Book Review: The Place of Belonging

6 Jan

It’s not easy being the child of a single mother living in Big Sky country during the 1940s. But sometimes fitting in isn’t the best way to discover who you are. Faulkner’s story of a girl struggling to find her place in a blended Montana farm family explores how separation and loss can bring wholeness.

Jayne Pearson Faulkner was raised by a single mother and her grandmother in the 1940’s under the Big Sky of Montana. At the age of 14 she began sending manuscripts to Gospel Publishing House-many of which they published.  Eventually she was hired by them and began writing short stories for the weekly Sunday school publications. She attended Central Bible College while working at GPH and became a staff writer until she graduated.

She and her husband Stan were pastors for three years before becoming missionaries to the Philippines and later in the Kingdom of Tonga, South Pacific.  She has been a freelance editing for Virtue Magazine as well as others.   The Place of Belonging is her first full length novel.  She laughs and explains, “I kept trying to cut it off at 2000 words.”  Once you read this book you’ll most likely wonder, as so many others do, when she is going to write her next novel!

My Impressions:

Jayne Pearson Faulkner’s memoir of her childhood in Montana’s Big Sky Country reads more like a coming of age novel than a strict biography.  The Place of Belonging is beautifully written in a quiet yet sure style that covers Jayne’s life from the age of  about 7 until just after her 13th birthday.  Being raised by a single mother and grandmother proved somewhat confusing and left for more than one unanswered question for young Janie.  She felt something missing and was forever standing on the outside looking in.  Then her world changes when her mother marries Gunder Pearson and moves to his farm.  A farm was the most wonderful place Janie could imagine.  Pearson tells her story from a child’s point of view and the wonder of the plains of Montana, the life of farmers in the 1940s and 50s and the struggles of fitting in show through her prose.  A very quick read, I found The Place of Belonging a refreshing break well worth the time.


(I received The Place of Belonging from Bring It On! in return for an honest review.  The opinions expressed are mine alone.)