Tag Archives: fiction

NOTED! Book Review by Wendy Daiker, Final-Year MDiv Spouse


Jacobson, Kathy J. Noted! First edition. (Mineral Point, WI: Little Creek Press. A Division of Kristin Mitchell Design, Inc., 2015), 220pp.

NOTED!  By Kathy J. Jacobson is a Christian fiction novel that brings out real life events in her characters in an intriguing way that makes it hard to set the book down. Jillian, the main character is a Christian woman who wants a personal new start, with a job, in a new location across the country. She has her strong faith in God to help her through it. The job she takes pulls her into a world where she has to trust God and be patient. The job makes her evaluate her own failed relationships and how she will let go and move forward.

I love how Jacobson made me think about famous people and how their lives are hard in ways we may not think about and how they have the same hurts we have. They are not immune to the pain we have. They turn to the same God we turn to.

This book came at a perfect time in my life as I am beginning a new adventure into a new land and will be making new friends. I learned so much from Jillian in this novel about putting yourself out there and getting involved, and about taking a leap of faith to start new friendships.

I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys an easy read Christian novel. It is beautifully written and hits many topics with God at the center of life.


Kathy J. Jacobson

is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Wartburg Theological Seminary, Dubuque, Iowa. She has worked counseling troubled youth, has been an at-home Mom, a church youth worker and Christian education coordinator, worked in campus ministry, and for the last twelve years, has served in rural parish ministry. In addition to her work in the church, she volunteers as a hospice chaplain. Kathy resides with her husband in the beautiful “Driftless Area” of southwestern Wisconsin. They are parents of three children, all “twenty-something.” Kathy is an avid traveler, having visited forty-nine states and five continents, with most memorable trips to Papua New Guinea, the Holy Land, and Tanzania, East Africa. She enjoys music, theater, reading, biking, walking and hiking, but writing is her passion. NOTED! is her debut novel.


BOOK REVIEW: ALL GODS LEAD TO ROME reviewed by Rev. Burton Everist, Dubuque, Iowa

This review is of the book: All Gods Lead to Rome, by Elizabeth A. LeeperPublished in 2012 by Black Rose Writing – http://www.blackrosewriting.com.  (345 pages)
When I read the Narnia Chronicles to my youngest son he did not want to hear the final book.  He did not want the story to end.  That’s what I felt about All Gods Lead to Rome.   Unfortunately this book had to come to an end.
    No cookie-cutter characters inhabit this chronicle of Christians and others in the hostile world of second century Rome.  Justin, a Christian philosopher, and Atlus, a Christian slave in the household of Claudius narrate the story.  Their relationships with each other and with others are complex and filled with both inner tensions and external threats that gripped me and compelled me to keep reading and reading and reading.
    Justin journeys to Rome to establish a Christian school of philosophy.  On the boat he meets and becomes friends with urbane Crispan who considers Christians abnormal and the God of the Jews impotent.  Throughout, the two engage in friendly disagreement.  Victor, a member of the Christian community advocates the views of Valentinus which appeals to Crispan, much to Justin’s display.
   Claudius, a conflicted Christian, hosts the community alongside his faithful wife, Vestia.  Within the household conflict abounds among the slaves and within the congregation vital struggles surface as the church seeks to find its way. 
   Readers will be surprised that the Christians, with some ambivalence, attend the games of the Ludi Romani, in honor of Jupiter.  Atlus takes us behind the scene and describes in some detail the inner workings of Nero’s Colloseum as well as the bloody spectacle of slaughter.  Later we are not spared the agony as Atlus and others watch the deaths of members of the congregation who had declared their faith publicly.
    Framing the story is dialog among the gods of Rome (and other foreign gods as well).
    All Gods Lead to Rome is too rich and complex to fairly describe in this short review.  You will have to read it for yourself.  I am waiting for Elizabeth Leeper’s next book!