Friday, December 23, 2011

Book Review: Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories for Tough Times (With FREE E-Book Download for Readers)


Are you heading out of down this weekend for the holidays, and are looking for an e-book to download, and take along.  Well, look no further than Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories for Tough Times.  Thanks to Shelton Interactive and Chicken Soup for the Soul, they are offering Inspired by Savannah readers a chance to download this title FREE (For a limited time only!!!). 


This free e-book (which is a sampler form the Devotional Stories Book Series) works on all e-readers -- Kindle, Nook, iPad, Kobo, iPod Touch, iPhone, and others, and all generations of them. Don't worry, though. If you or your readers don't have an e-reader (or receive one this holiday season) you can still enjoy this free book on your computer.

Links to Access and Download FREE E-Book:

To download from Amazon:

To download from Barnes & Noble:

To download from Apple iTunes:

To download from Kobo Books:




Summary of Book:

Life has always been filled with trials, including illness, job loss, grief, addictions, and much more. God never promised that our earthly lives would be without difficulties, but He assured us that He will always be with us to share our burdens. Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories for Tough Times is filled with stories that show God's presence during a time of trouble. Readers will find encouragement, solace, and strength in these personal stories and prayers.

My Thoughts on This Book:

I was sent this book over a month ago to read, but with the birth of our daughter and her recent hospital stay, I have had limited time to sit down and read like I used to.  Instead, while cooking dinner or waiting for the laundry to get done, I have been sneaking in a few pages here and there. But, finally, tonight I finished the book.  And, with good time because when I went on to begin writing up my book review, I noticed that Chicken Soup for the Soul was offering me and my readers the E-book version of this book.

What I like best about this and the other books in the Chicken Soup for the Soul Series is that you can pick up the book and pick and choose which stories you want to read.  And, if you are busy, like most of are nowadays, each true, personal story in these books is only 1 1/2 – 3 pages in length.  So, just by reading a few pages at a time, like I was, you can still get the inspiration that these books provide.

Stories included in this book were written by people of ages.  I couldn’t help by smile reading some of the stories from the children.  And, I laughed and cried while reading some of the ones from adults, in which I can relate to.  Please note that if you are looking for happy/cheerful book to read over the holidays, this isn’t one to delve into, as it shares stories of loss of children from car accidents, cancer, sexual and physical abuse, and other situations in people’s lives in which they were dealt a lousy hand and had to put their faith in God, and know that he is walking next to them through this.

Having just recently gone through the illness and surgery with my 4 week out, this book helped me channel my thoughts and energy into prayer and leave it up to God, as he is the only one who really knows the outcome. I learned this the hard way a couple years back when I was diagnosed with stage 2 nasopharyngeal carcinoma.  I had been going and going with the hustle and bustle of the work grind, and thinking that all you did was work and sleep.  I wasn’t taking the time to really enjoy life and the people around me.  I guess I was still in the mindset that they weren’t going anywhere, anytime soon.  But, in a blink of an eye, I was going through 35 weeks of radiation, along with high-dose chemotherapy treatments.  I went from feeling strong, to relying on a feeding tube for food and to administer pain relief.  This was a rude awakening and one that made me sit back and look at the world and the people around me differently.  Through prayer and positive thinking from family, friends and myself, I was able to get over the “road block” put in front of me.  I guess God puts these “road blocks” in our way to challenge us and make us take a moment to regroup and refocus our lives.  I came out of this experience a stronger person, and one who now takes every day as a gift.  And, through the miracles of God, I was blessed with two beautiful girls, when doctors said I wouldn’t be able to conceive due to the treatments.  Now, I am using my remaining time here to watching them grow and discover the world.  And, when I find myself drifting or getting caught up in things, I step back and regroup, as I know realize that life is precious and time is limited, so you need to make the most of your time, and let those around you know how much they mean to you.  And, this is what many people plan to do this upcoming holiday weekend.

So, if you are looking for a book that deals with “tough times” and how people have become better people because of this, then you would enjoy this book.  It is not to be read cover to cover in one sitting, but to take time and meditate and pray after each heartfelt story.

About the Authors:

Susan M. Heim is a long-time Chicken Soup for the Soul editor and Christian author, specializing in family-oriented books and women’s issues.

Karen C. Talcott is an author and educator with an expertise in women’s issues, faith, and angels.

Disclosure:  I was sent a copy of this book from the publisher in order to write up an honest review.  The views above are mine and mine alone.

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