Under a Desert Sky: Redefining Hope, Beauty, and Faith in the Hardest Places
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Under a Desert Sky: Redefining Hope, Beauty, and Faith in the Hardest Places

Revell / 2017 / Paperback

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Product Description

As Hartke's days became a blur of doctors' appointments, treatments, and surgeries, she wrestled with a tumble of tangled emotions, a shaken faith, and self-doubt. In this raw memoir, she invites fellow sojourners to discover that even in life's hardest places they aren't alone in their fear and are never forgotten by our loving God. Paperback.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 256
Vendor: Revell
Publication Date: 2017
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0800727746
ISBN-13: 9780800727741

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Publisher's Description

There comes a time in life when we find ourselves in the desert place of burning questions. Why? Why me? But even as we shake our fist heavenward, the heart whispers another question. Who? Who are you, God? It is a question of relationship, a question we all murmur in the hardest places.

Against the backdrop of the Sonoran Desert, Lynne Hartke asks her own hard questions as cancer arrives like a thief with one goal: to take it all. Hair. The contents of a stomach. A marriage. A life. As her days become a blur of doctors' appointments, treatments, and surgeries, she wrestles with a tumble of tangled emotions, a shaken faith, and self-doubt. Cancer is now not only threatening her own life, but, in a surprising twist, the lives of both her parents as well.

Through her raw, lyrical words, Hartke invites fellow sojourners to discover that in life's hardest places, they are not alone in their fear, they are not foolish to hope, and they are never forgotten by a loving, pursuing God. Never.

Author Bio

Lynne Hartke is a breast cancer survivor who celebrates the difficult and the beautiful with her husband, Kevin, in Chandler, Arizona, where they have pastored a church for over thirty years. When not out on the desert trails avoiding rattlesnakes, Lynne is blogging, speaking and volunteering with several cancer organizations, and keeping up with their four grown children and three grandchildren. Lynne is currently training to hike from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon to the North Rim (a distance of 23 miles) in one day--because cancer taught her to grab onto life with both hands.

Product Reviews

4.9 Stars Out Of 5
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(7)
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4.4 out Of 5
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  1. standingupforJC
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    creative, dramatic yet so genuine
    July 7, 2017
    standingupforJC
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I love this bookcover, content, everything about it. This became an addition to my favorite books right away after reading just a few pages. The introduction got me crying so early.

    I do not know anyone close to me who has cancer, but that did not become a hindrance in any way for me to be able to relate to this "difficult beautiful" story.

    All throughout the read, I was so amazed at how the author used ordinary words to convey her and her lovely family's extraordinary story. Her writing was creative, dramatic yet so genuine.

    I love how the author incorporated the Word of God into her actual experiences that were written in this book. I also appreciate the author's candor to tell her story as precisely as possible.

    This made me realize how life can get all too complex and impossible but still beautiful and pleasurable because of who God is and what He does. My emotions got so mixed up that I've cried countless times during the entire read.

    Even before I got to the end of the book, my hope and courage got reactivated. I was reassured that God is going to be with me in all seasons of this life. I'm more than grateful to have had the chance to devour this book.

    I recommend this amazing work to people who are desperate for hope or those who want to see life in a different light. You'll find what you're looking for UNDER A DESERT SKY. You're welcome!

    P.S. I thank God for Ms. Lynne Hartke (the author) for answering my questions and assuring me (when I thought the book got lost somewhere as it took a long time) by sending emails to make sure the book would reach me by any means. Awesome, isn't she? I'm also grateful for the wonderful note cards (made by her daughter) that went alongside the book. Wow!

    Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.
  2. Britney Adams
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    Under a Desert Sky
    June 5, 2017
    Britney Adams
    Quality: 0
    Value: 0
    Meets Expectations: 0
    Under a Desert Sky is a candid and compelling read! When faced with her own cancer diagnosis, as well as the diagnoses of both her parents, Lynne Hartke wrestled with a myriad of thoughts, questions, and emotions. Relating her experiences to the Sonoran Desert, Hartke illustrates both the desolation and the beauty to be found in life's desert places. Heartfelt and hopeful, Under a Desert Sky is a stirring memoir!

    I received a complimentary copy of this book. No review was required, and all thoughts expressed are my own.
  3. bookwomanjoan
    Oak Harbor, WA
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: Female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Excellent memoir of facing cancer
    May 24, 2017
    bookwomanjoan
    Oak Harbor, WA
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: Female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Cancer redefined life for Hartke. It started with her own diagnosis of breast cancer. Then her dad and soon after her mom were diagnosed with cancer - both incurable. Cancer redefined her concepts of strength and courage. It made her reevaluate her understanding of beauty and what it means to belong.

    This is a well written and captivating memoir of struggling with unanswered questions, of being in hard places, of having more than she could handle. Hartke crafts a great parallel between her experiences and being in the desert.

    Hartke draws great spiritual lessons from her experiences. I really like her analogy of the desert. It contains a beauty that can be discovered only through difficulty. There are lessons from God that can be learned only in the desert.

    I also like her insight and honesty. She notes that people will sometimes say that God will not give you more than you can handle. "It's blatantly untrue," she writes, "because if I never had more than I could handle, when would I ever need God?" (Loc. 1043/3717)

    I highly recommend this book to those interested in an honest and insightful memoir of facing cancer. It would be of particular interest to hikers as Hartke shares many hiking stories. The book would be an encouragement to anyone waylaid by cancer. There are questions for discussion and personal reflection included. Hartke has also added a list of Scriptures for desert sojourners, arranged by need.

    I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
  4. Helen M
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: Female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Honest, Truthful, Encouraging, Inspirational
    May 16, 2017
    Helen M
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: Female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Under a Desert Sky, by Lynne Hartke, is a very powerful book of Lynne's walk through cancer followed by her parents' walks through cancel. Lynne writes a very emotional and inspirational book. Her writing is so honest and truthful, asking the why me questions so many of us ask in the privacy of our own thoughts.

    This book takes us through Lynne's life and journey through cancer. Lynne fought the cancer fight and won. Shortly after both of her parents began the cancer fight. Each fighting their fight in their own way.

    The author takes us on hikes with her and her family, describing the beauty they see and the trials they go through. The one hike that sticks in my mind, is when their daughter just laid down on the dusty

    trail and told them to leave her there. But when her father reached for her, she got up, dusted herself off and went with him. To me, this relates to the walk we have with God and through our lives. During the good easy time, life is beautiful. But when we get ill or things get hard,we get overwhelmed. We want to just throw ourselves down and not go on. With God's help we are able to get back up and finish the walk.

    I just love this book! It often brought back memories of watching my parents' through their cancer walks. At times I though she was writing my story. So truthful and honest and powerful and emotional all wrapped up together. This is a book that everyone would benefit from reading. Regardless of if their trial in life is cancer or any other situation. This story will inspire you to keep going, to trust and will encourage you.

    Just after I started reading this book, I received a call from my husband that I never wanted to receive. We dropped everything to make necessary arrangements and notify the children. We were making an 'rush trip' for my husband to have surgery. As I laid in the hotel that weekend, it was this book that I grabbed to read. While our situation was very serious, we were not alone. Others have had worse situations and through Lynne's experiences I was able to just shrug off my normal life for the time my husband needed our every thought and action to be on him.

    I want to thank this author for writing such a wonderful book. And the publisher for allowing this book to be available on their blogging network.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through Revell. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising
  5. Tobie
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Hope (and honesty) in the Desert Places
    May 15, 2017
    Tobie
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Unlike any book I have ever read, Ms. Hartke asks the questions out-loud that we only dare to whisper in times of distress. Combining tales of a harsh but beautiful desert landscape with the trials of human frailty in this life, the author has woven the ordinary with the extraordinary in every chapter. Cancer touched her and her family in a life that could have been defeated by sorrow -- but provides inspiration and hope instead. Whether or not you are a follower of Christ, the author shares stories and moments that we can all relate to. A good writer pens words, phrases and stories that make one pause and think of their own tales. Evaluate their own stories. This book is not meant to be a page-turner; with gifted prose it is a page-ponder-er, a page-reflect-er, even a page-savor-er. This book is a gift you give yourself to do just that with your own life.
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