Patriotic Musings on the 4th of July

A few weeks ago, a new friend asked me a question, and I started my answer with something along the lines of, “Well, you know how we’re patriotic about our country?” As the first generation of her family to be born in the USA, her quick answer was, “No, not really. Mostly I hear people talking about how much they hate different things.”

Patriotic Musings (1)


How to Get Amazon’s Audible Books at a Discount

Do you enjoy audiobooks? I treasure them as the best way to make mundane activities enjoyable. Whether cleaning the house or spending hours on the road during a family vacation, audio stories bring a whole different world into your own. The only drawback is the cost!



An Update

Hello friends! I can’t believe it’s been a month since I last wrote a post for you guys. It’s been a month of big changes for me and my family. My last post was written right after returning from my first experience as a camp counselor. What I didn’t say in that post was that my grandfather had a heart attack during the last day we were at camp. I wrote that post in a hospital waiting room.

For a few days following triple bypass surgery, we thought Papa would pull through. However, he didn’t. After two weeks of spending our days in the hospital, we launched into the flurry of activity that surrounds the execution of a funeral.



4 Non-Fiction Books to Read Before a Missions Trip

Have you ever considered going on a missions trip? The opportunity to travel for missions usually presents itself to Christin youth sooner or later. Sometimes it involves a flight that crosses continents. Sometimes it’s a road trip to a location in your own country. Often there are a lot of questions you ask yourself before making a commitment to a missions trip. What can I really do? I’m not an evangelist, how am I supposed to tell strangers about God? I’ve lived a sheltered life and don’t even understand the issues a missions trip might address. Will my participation really help?

4 Missions Trips Books


Espionage Cover Reveal

Nothing like being fashionably late to the party! The cover reveal for Morgan Elizabeth Huneke’s upcoming book was this Monday, but I was sick in bed and not thinking about anything besides sleep. 😛

Here’s the cover now!


Author Interview

Which of your “bad guy” characters would be most likely to show compassion to a homeless person? Why?

I only have two bad guys in Espionage, “the stryte” and Sir Roland. Between the two, probably Sir Roland, but more from elimination, because the stryte is too gleeful in his misdeeds to show compassion. Sir Roland’s not really much more likely.

If one of your characters could teleport to the 21st century and drive a car, which of them would most enjoy the experience?

My mom said Kyle when she saw the question. Other than the fact that he’s twelve and so it would technically be illegal, he probably would enjoy it the most. It’s something normal for our world, and he craves normal.

What did you learn from writing Espionage?

Not every book is as hard as Time Captives. Also that worldbuilding can be fun, but when my worldbuilding backs my characters into a corner, it makes sequel plotting exceedingly difficult. That even bad guys should be shown mercy. And that a girl from church actually looks exactly like my main character. (She’s the girl on the cover.)

About the Book

“Sir Roland has invited us to visit for the Autumn Feast.”

“Do we have to go, Papa? I couldn’t feast with the most crooked politician in all of Briznom.”

As the daughter of a Briznomian vassal lord, Vannie Cumberland has spent her childhood immersed in the world of politics. Relations between Briznom and the neighboring country of Calhortz are strained due to the tyrannical rule of the strytes. A proposed alliance could calm relations between the two countries, but would come at the cost of Briznom’s freedom.

When her father’s political archenemy invites them to the Autumn Feast, Vannie uncovers an evil scheme endangering the life of someone close to her. Personal enmity comes to a dangerous head as Vannie struggles to expose the corruption and stop the alliance. Time is running out.

Events are becoming too big for her to handle. Will Sir Roland’s son help or will things finally spiral out of control?

Release Date
Espionage, A Companion to Time Captives, will be released on May 16th, 2016. Stay tuned on Morgan’s blog and Facebook page for more information and sneak peeks.

Preorder on Kindle now!

About Morgan

Morgan Elizabeth Huneke is a homeschool graduate who lives in Georgia. She has enjoyed creating characters and writing stories since early childhood. Her other interests include reading, playing the piano and violin, and politics. She is the author of Across the Stars and The Experiment as well as the Time Captives fantasy trilogy.

You can connect with Morgan on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Instagram, and Pinterest.

Read the story behind the cover

Guess a Quote [01.18.16]

Because of winn-dixie [GAQ]Today is a big day on Leah’s Bookshelf. It’s the blogs fourth anniversary! I’m truly thankful for each and every one of you readers, and a special shout out to those of you who have been here since that first year. It’s been great to have you be part of the adventure.

Closer Look at the Evidence, ABefore I jump into the Guess a Quote, don’t forget there’s a book giveaway in progress. I’m giving away a copy of the devotional A Closer Look at the Evidence. The Rafflecopter link was broken in the last email that went out, but it’s fixed now and the giveaway post is fully operational.

No one correctly guessed the last quote that went up, but I’m sure some of you have read the book it came from. The quote came from Because of Winn-Dixie, by Kate DiCamillo. If you haven’t read Because of Winn-Dixie, maybe you have read The Tale of Despereaux by the same author. The Tale of Desperaux seems to be a favorite among Redwall fans. 😉

Now to take a dip back into the classics for this week’s quote.

The soul grows into lovely habits as easily as into ugly ones, and the moment a life begins to blossom into beautiful words and deeds, that moment a new standard of conduct is established, and your eager neighbors look to you for a continuous manifestation of the good cheer, the sympathy, the ready wit, the comradeship, or the inspiration, you once showed yourself capable of. Bear figs for a season or two, and the world outside the orchard is very unwilling you should bear thistles.


Book Review: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

Best Christmas PAgeant ever, TheWatching people experience things for the first time is one of my favorite things. For example, I go to church near several colleges that draw a large number of international students. I love seeing new friends from Central and South America experience New England snow for the first time!

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever lets readers watch as kids from “the wrong side of the tracks” experience the Christmas story for the first time.

The Herdmans are the worst kids in town. Their teachers and classmates are pretty sure their the worst kids ever. They don’t learn anything except cuss words and manipulation tactics, and they certainly don’t pay any attention to those trying to teach or correct them. Until they stumble into church looking for snacks and forcibly insert themselves into the yearly Christmas pageant. While church regulars and their children yawn their way through the annual pageant, the Herdmans are shocked by the age old story.

Many thanks to my friend Hannah Mills for telling me about this book and the readers of Leah’s Bookshelf for convincing me to purchase it. It’s currently on sale for $3.29 on Amazon if anyone else wants to see the Christmas story in a whole new way.

Book Review: Ruth


“Belief is something that can happen in a minute,” Ruth said slowly, groping for the words. “In the way that the sun can come through the clouds suddenly after a storm. But faith — that’s something different. More like the almond blossoms I guess … They grow so slowly from bud to blossom that you’re hardly aware of it.”

Though married to and in love with Hebrew Mahlon, Ruth has never embraced the Jewish religion as her own. She also wastes little devotion on worship of Chemosh, the god of her own people. When death steals Mahlon and smothers the last hope of an heir for the house of Elimelech, the three widows of the household are left to struggle for survival. Naomi longs to return to her homeland. In her own quiet way, Ruth promises that if Naomi’s God provides a miracle and opens a way for them to travel to Bethlehem, she will go with Naomi and know that the God of Israel is the true God.

Though very simple and old-fashioned, I believe you (like me) will find this book hard to put down after the first 50 pages. I have read the story of Ruth more times than I can count. Despite knowing the entire plot and how the tale would end, watching Ruth’s faith grow and experiencing love blossom between her and Boaz kept me reading as if I’d never heard the story before.

Published in the 1980s, author Lois T. Henderson depicts a much less romanticized version of Bible times than more recent books. I have found the unique angle of her stories refreshing! That said, where the Bible shows the budding and development of love and marriage, Henderson does not shy from weaving those threads into prominent view in her tales.

I highly recommend this book for lovers of Bible fiction, classics, and non-mainstream books.