Waiting for Wonderearning to Live on God’s Timeline by Marlo Schalesky – A Book Review

Waiting for Wonder – Learning to Live on God’s Timeline

By: Marlo Schalesky

Reviewed by Richard R. Blake

Sarah’s Barrenness in Light of God’s promised Blessing

In her book “Waiting for Wonder – Learning to Live on God’s Timeline,” Marlo Schalesky takes the reader on Saria’s journey from the shame, guilt and pain of barrenness, through years of dryness, the promise of a new start, a new dream, and a new life. And then the disappointment of living in Canaan as a foreigner and sojourner; Sarai questioned the promise but remained faithful to the only true God, Elohim. Abram’s fear and deceit in Egypt led to more shame for Sarai – and then the promise restored. Sarai waited. The promise of a son – in her old age, hope restored. More detours, more dryness, more shame, and finally – a son, Isaac, Elohim fulfilled the promised blessing. Faith rewarded.

Marlo is a gifted communicator with spiritual insight. She blends the key elements of the story with a keen sense of Biblical application and relational theology. Marlo’s writing is thoughtful, warm, sensitive, and down-to-earth. Sarai’s story reads like a novel.

“Waiting for Wonder” is written for reader’s searching for hope in the midst of disappointment, doubt, crisis, and heartbreak, looking for signs of hope of promise and purpose restored; to experience the deep indescribable joy of freedom, redemption, and the promise God’s faithfulness for a fruitful future.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review purposes. The opinions expressed are my own.

Abington Press, P. O. Box 280988, Nashville, TN 37228, 978-1501820106, $16.99, 2016, 212 pages


Lessons from Zachary – A Book Review

Lessons from Zachary – Turning Disability into Possibility

By Sandy Scott

Reviewed by Richard R. Blake, richard330@yahoo.com

Engaging and Releasing Hidden Powers Within – Standing Strong Through the Storm

Just twelve days after his birth Zachary Scott was diagnosed as severely physically and intellectually disabled. This news began a journey into the uncharted territory of the unknown for Sandy and Jonathan Scott; a heart-rending journey plagued by unexpected disappointments and uncertainties. The daily stresses of hectic schedules, social pressures, and the demands created by Zachary’s disabilities became overwhelming.

Sandy was devastated and frustrated by an unexpected and unusual combination of strained relationships and in desperation was forced to look within herself and to choose a new perspective – one that unleashed in her the power of love.

Sandy reached into the resources of unexplored potential to become a leader in coaching leaders in healthcare, to parents of children with disabilities, and to train professionals in the healthcare and educational fields.

Sandy’s writing is authentic, genuine, realistic and relevant. Her premises are well thought out, her choice of words stir the imagination of the reader and enable them to relate personally to her journey through a complex set of circumstances. As the reader becomes deeply involved in Sandy’s story; her insights and the lessons she learned become personal and identifiable and provide a new understanding into the complications, experiences and unknown potential of their own lives. Dozens of well-chosen pictures and good photography add a whole extra dimension to the heart felt emotions of love, pathos, and positive impact of Zachary’s life.

“Lessons from Zachary” will resonate with readers who have been touched by the challenge of disappointment in broken relationships and other personal tragedy; readers in need of a message of hope, and a strategy for tapping into their unknown potential.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review purposes. The opinions expressed are my own.

International Publishing Works, P. O. Box 415, Bellevue, Colorado 50512-0415, 978-097759205, 1995, 2017, 264 Pages






Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill – A Book Review

Think and Grow Rich

By Napoleon Hill

Reviewed by Richard R. Blake,

Thirteen Principles of Success –A Classic Model on Individual Achievement

“Think and Grow Rich,” written by Napoleon Hill is your passport to financial independence, personal growth, and peace of mind. Napoleon Hill’s thirteen principles of success are the result of 20 years of research. This edition is a reproduction of the unedited text of Hill’s 1937 original work.

These principles contain important philosophies that you will want to study, digest, meditate on, and absorb as you make them your own. Hill includes stories to illustrate his philosophy of the “Law of Success.” These stories include men like Andrew Carnegie, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and other leaders in industry.

The foundational principles of Hill’s “Law of Success” are the basic premise or substance of many success oriented authors, writing in the genre of visualization, positive thinking, and self-realization.

Personal treasures I gleaned from my reading include the wisdom found in these principles:

  • Faith, a burning desire, and persistence combined with a plan of action will produce miraculous results.
  • Every adversity brings with it the seed of an equivalent advantage – handicaps can be converted into stepping stones.

Readers willing to commit themselves to Napoleon Hill’s thirteen steps to riches as found in his book, “Think and Grow Rich” can expect to find “abundant riches” in finances, business associations, family relationships, peace of mind, and a changed life.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review purposes. The opinions expressed are my own.

Sound Wisdom, P. O. Box 310, Shippensburg, PA 17257, 978-1937879488, $ 27.95, 2017, 382 pages

My Story in Black and White – The Autobiography of Jesse O. Thomas – A Book Review

My Story in Black and White – The Autobiography of Jesse O. Thomas

by Jesse O. Thomas/ Rosemary Braxton

Reviewed by Richard R. Blake, Richard330@yahoo.com

A Marvelous Story of Persistence in the Face o Adversity and Injustice

“My Story in Black and White” presents an absorbing account of a period in Black history, including antidotes that reflect a vivid observation into the relationships, behind the scenes drama, and an overall picture of the progression  made possible by the cooperation these personalities (black and white) that influenced the direction and motivation taken by educational institutions, government agencies, and economic environment during the first 50 years of the 20th century. The book is adapted from original autobiographical notes of Jesse O. Thomas, facilitated by his daughter Rosemary Braxton.

The author captures an amazing glimpse into the life, brilliance and accomplishments of George Washington Carver’s scientific imagination, and of the impact of Booker T. Washington’s life and influence on government officials.

While an undergraduate at Tuskegee Institute, Jesse Thomas came to the attention of Booker T. Washington and President Theodore Roosevelt. The results of these contacts opened doors for Thomas to become an outstanding influence and spokesperson for educational causes, for the underprivileged, for racial inequality and for integration, and desegregation.

Readers will find nuggets of truth which lie hidden away in Braxton’s detailed account, begging to be discovered, mined, polished and recognized as true gems of treasured wisdom.

““My Story in Black and White” is the story of a man who believes that regardless of the circumstances of birth, racial identity, or heredity it is man’s purpose to fulfill his destiny by making a contribution to make toward advancing the world during his generation. Jesse O. Thomas is an example of this kind of man; a man of accomplishment and purpose.

A complimentary copy of this book was provided for review purposes.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Robert D. Reed Publishers, P. O. Box 1992, Bandon, OR 97411, 9781934759981, $ 14.95, 2015, 360 pages