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Saints and Sailors #4 in the Dunbridge Chronicles, by Pam Rhodes
Members from Neil Fishers old church in Dunbridge and new parish in Derbyshire come together on a Christian cruise around the British Isles.
They encounter joy and catastrophe as friendships grow, relationships emerge, secrets get revealed and old hurts are healed. As the ship circles Britain, visiting the Scottish islands, Ireland, the Scilly Isles, Guernsey, and the Normandy Coast, these passengers learn as much about themselves as they do about the places they visit.
Number of Pages: 256
Vendor: Lion Fiction
Publication Date: 2016
|Dimensions: 7.75 X 5.00 (inches)|
Series: Dunbridge Chronicles
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VicsMediaRoomIrvine, CAAge: 55-65Gender: male5 Stars Out Of 5A Cruise Around The Brithish IslesMarch 10, 2016VicsMediaRoomIrvine, CAAge: 55-65Gender: maleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Pam Rhodes in her new book, Saints & Sailors Book Four in The Dunbridge Chronicles series published by Lion Fiction continues the story of Neil Fisher.
From the back cover: Freshly-fledged vicar Neil Fisher and a group of his new parishioners in Derbyshire join members of his old church in Dunbridge on a cruise around the British Isles.
They set off on the high seas with high hopes, and even higher spirits. Neils motley flock of pilgrim sailors face delights and disasters as friendships blossom, relationships evolve, secrets are revealed, and old hurts nursed. As the ship circles Britain, visiting the Scottish islands, Ireland, the Scilly Isles, Guernsey, and the Normandy Coast, Neils fellow passengers learn as much about themselves as they do about the places they visit. And love is in the air!
I do believe that of the four books in this series so far, this one is the best! I like taking a cruise and taking a Christian cruise makes it astronomically better. The pace is slow and easy and everyone begins to get to know the other people. Plus the ports-of-call are very interesting with quite a few of the destinations having been featured in other Christian books by other talented authors. Neil Fisher returns and he definitely has his hands full but the people are varied and interesting and there is even romance. This is a fun read that you are not going to want to put down until you have finished it! It is just that good.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Kregel Publications. 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.
MoonpiePRYORAge: 55-65Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5NOT WHAT I EXPECTEDMarch 4, 2016MoonpiePRYORAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 3This was my first book to read by Pam Rhodes. I have a mixed review. The story centers around an Anglican priest who joins his previous and new church members on a cruise that highlights historic religious locations.
I had a lot of trouble getting into parts of the story. There were far too many characters, and I had difficulty keeping them straight, even with the list of their names and descriptions at the front of the book. It was not until the middle of the book that I was able to keep them straight. Also, the accounts of the special sites they visited on their tours, did not interest me.
Dont get me wrong, the book was well written. In spite of a very large character cast, I enjoyed the glimpses into their personal lives and struggles. There was a wonderfully board representation of the varied personalities people possess and how they interact or in some cases clash when put together. All of them had different reasons for taking the cruise. There was humor, sadness, personal discovery and even tragedy scattered throughout. I found it true to life and very interesting how the characters appeared one way in public, careful to hide actual problems and emotions from their fellow shipmates. I reminder that we have no clue what others are facing their private lives. I thought it was very clever of the author to cast herself as a character using her real name and doing what she does in real life!
I received this book at no charge from Kregel Publications in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
lcjohnson1988IndianaAge: 45-54Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5interestingMarch 4, 2016lcjohnson1988IndianaAge: 45-54Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4Neil Fisher has the bright idea to take a Christian cruise, visiting landmarks of famous saints of the early church. He has invited members from his current church family at Burntacre as well as members from his 3-year stint as curate at Dunbridge. The all comes together for a nine day cruise. While on board, a praise choir is assembled by none other than the author herself! I thought that was a clever twist of the author, putting herself in as a character in the story. As the cruise gets underway, readers are treated to lovely descriptions and faith-filled moments as we visit some of these historic sites. The relationships between various people unfold, making for a book I couldnt put down.
I liked everything about this story with the exception of the homosexual interaction between two minor characters in one brief scene. There were no graphic details, but I didnt see the need for this in the story. Other than that aspect, the book was a tear-jerker in spots and had me applauding and laughing in other spots. Neil and Claire try to keep the peace between Iris and Harry as well as their old and new church families. Betty, Sheila and Marion were terrific! I enjoyed catching up with some of the familiar characters from Dunbridge while being introduced to new characters from Neils current church family. There were couples on the cruise with marriage troubles. One person returned to the spot he had landed on D-Day more than seventy years earlier. He had never returned because the memories were too painful, but now at the age of 91 he returns with his son and grandson at his side to share his memories of that day. Another woman returns to see her family after a 24-year estrangement, but has no idea what the outcome of this meeting will be. The subplots were woven together to form a nice, cohesive story and the writing was well done.
MaureenTSyracuse NYGender: female4 Stars Out Of 5Sailing With Your PastorFebruary 29, 2016MaureenTSyracuse NYGender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 4There are three other books in this series, but this is the first that I have read. It is interesting in that you are taking a cruise with Neils old parish on the cruise together, they begin the journey as strangers, but become friends.
I love the descriptions of the places we traveled and some historical information, it was so interesting. I loved the humor presented here, and would have loved to be on this cruise, or maybe a fly on the wall.
With a Christian cruise things should be smooth sailing with like minds aboard, right! I loved how the ladies came to the aid of one of their own when her husband was abusing her with snide remarks, and they tell her all of her confidence has been knocked out of her by her husband, enjoyed how they helped her.
We visit beautifully described places and learn a lot about the history of the area, I love history and this about places Ive never heard of and oh so interesting.
Sign me up for the next one of these cruises, I really want to go, and they really do exist!
I received this book through Kregel Blogger Tours, and was not required to give a positive review.
bookwomanjoanOak Harbor, WAAge: 55-65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Best yet in the seriesFebruary 28, 2016bookwomanjoanOak Harbor, WAAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I think this novel may be the best yet in The Dunbridge Chronicles. It was a joy to read. While it is the fourth in the series, it would be worth reading even if the previous novels have been missed.
Neil and his flocks set off on a Christian cruise. That's right, both his flocks - the people in Dunbridge, where Neil learned the ropes as curate, and the people of Burntacre, where he now serves. The two groups start out as strangers but by the end of the cruise have become friends.
What a delightful book. Rhodes again does a great job with characters. There is the jealous choir director who gets huffy because she hasn't been chosen to lead the choir. There is the couple who are finally beginning to test the edges of romance and begin contemplating marriage. There is the long married couple with a gruff husband who seems to be bent on ending their marriage. There's the middle aged woman who will make the stop in Dublin with thoughts of seeing her parents parents who threw her out of the house 24 years ago and whom she hasn't seen since.
In addition to the greatly depicted characters are the history lessons. We journey along to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne and learn of St. Aidan and the monastery established there in AD 635. We visit Orkney and hear of the Italian prisoners of war brought there to work on the Churchill Barriers. Then on to the Isle of Iona and the community St. Columba founded there. We find delight in the Abbey Gardens and the Isles of Scilly and then go on to Guernsey. What fun to find out about the spiritual history of these places through the eyes of the travelers.
And the most fun may be the appearance of the author, Pam Rhodes, the popular host of BBC Television's Songs of Praise program. She is instrumental in designing the musical aspect of this Christian cruise. It was as much fun to read about her as I am sure it was for her to put herself into the story.
During the nine days of the cruise, people bicker just like they do at church. New relationships are made and old ones heal. Some people are moved by what God is doing while others seem to be as crabby at the end as they were at the beginning.
I highly recommend this novel. I love the characters and I really enjoyed the history I learned. Unlike some British Christian novels, the Christianity in this one will be well recognized as evangelical by American readers.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of an independent and honest review.