Fear Less, Pray More – by Janet Ramsdell Rockey


Fear Less, Pray More
A Woman’s Devotional Guide to Courageous Living

by Janet Ramsdell Rockey

Imprint: Barbour Books, Barbour Publishing, Inc.

Pub Date: 01 Aug 2017. ISBN: 9781683221852. PRICE: $4.99

Fear Less, Pray More – A Woman’s Devotional Guide to Courageous Living is an inspiring devotional guide filled with wisdom and grace, featuring 180 readings and prayers specially designed to alleviate your fears as you learn to trust God each and every day. This devotional book will inspire you to live courageously one day at a time, in your daily walk in Faith. As we place our trust in God, He gives us courage and strength. This devotional guide to courageous living will encourage us to fear less and pray more. Trust in God and do the right. The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is with us, guarding and guiding us all the way, until we reach heaven’s gate of glory and grace, where we will sing in happiness and praise.

Miriam Jacob


Today God Wants You to Know…You Are Beautiful – by Valorie Quesenberry


Today God Wants You to Know…You Are Beautiful
by Valorie Quesenberry

Imprint: Barbour Books, Publisher: Barbour Publishing, Inc. Pub Date 01 Aug 2017.
ISBN: 9781683222576. PRICE: $4.99

Celebrate each new day with encouragement and inspiration in this charming women’s devotional. You are a daughter of the King, beautifully created in His image. With over 180 readings, each inspiring devotional and accompanying Bible verse will make you feel perfectly loved. This beautiful devotional is filled with beautiful Scripture verses. All women are loved by God, beautiful in His eyes and wonderfully made in His image. This book that will speak to the hearts of people worldwide. Every woman is created by God’s design, fearfully and wonderfully made, radiating inner beauty from within. God made us, crafted in His glorious image and gifted with His sensitivities and longings. We reflect an unspeakable beauty. God sees it and He wants to show you what He sees in you, enhancing your beauty with His redemption and healing grace. Today, He rejoices over you. God wants you to know you are beautiful.

Miriam Jacob




3-Minute Devotions with Charles Spurgeon – compiled by Barbour Staff


True to its name, in 3-Minute Devotions with Charles Spurgeon, compiled by Barbour Staff, we find inspiring wisdom and spiritual encouragement in these readings by the Prince of Preachers, Charles Spurgeon. This delightful devotional infuses power-packed inspiration into 180 three-minute readings. In Minute 1, we study a Bible verse; in Minute 2, we read through a devotional; and in Minute 3, we read a prayer to start talking to God. In three little minutes, spiritual renewal is at our fingertips. The timeless spiritual truth in the inspirational readings are just as relevant today as they were when Charles Spurgeon wrote them. The devotions will enhance and strengthen our spiritual growth. 3-Minute Devotions with Charles Spurgeon is a compilation of selections from Spurgeon’s sermons and writings, interspersed with short passages of scripture, to inspire one-on-one time with our heavenly Father. These 3-minute devotional readings will inspire and encourage you to deepen your relationship with Christ.

Miriam Jacob


UNCOMMON – by Carey Scott


Pursuing a Life of Passion and Purpose

by Carey Scott

Imprint: Shiloh Run Press, Publisher: Barbour Publishing, Inc.,
Pub Date: 01 Jul 2017. ISBN: 9781683222750. PRICE: $14.99

Uncommon is a blueprint, a bugle and a battle cry, issuing a clarion call to women to be uniquely different, and make a giant leap into an extraordinary life, full of perseverance, passion and purpose. Carey Scott highlights this point with Biblical heroines, who lived uncommon lives in the toughest circumstances, teaching us to live life God’s way, imbued by His strength. God asks us to be His beacons and shine His light into the world, in uncommon, exemplary, radical obedience to the One who is Himself extraordinary.

With vulnerable authenticity and uncommon boldness, this book empowers us to embrace our calling and lead others to God. Be uncommon and leap aboard the bandwagon of faith. Stand out in faith and neither give up nor give in. Let your faith shine to lead others to Christ. Praise draws us closer to God to get the strength to face the trials of life. Uncommon teaches us to live life uncommonly. Carey Scott addresses real struggles women face daily, like unconditional forgiveness and the courage to face the most difficult trials. Carey encourages us to live uncommon lives, to be kind, generous, loving and forgiving, to have faith in God to achieve the impossible. In each chapter is a personal reflection, stories from the Bible, Scripture, a personal challenge, and a prayer. It is a daily quiet time guide and daily devotional in the study of uncommon womanhood.

This book is true to its name. It is uncommon to surrender when the world calls you to conform. Carey takers us on a unique study of boldness in faith, to discover our own passion and be imbued with a renewed, revived and rejuvenated trust in God’s Word. It is not easy to be uncommon and to take the giant leap of faith to follow God’s path. We must live out our faith in such a way that it sets us apart, consecrated for God. We must learn how to be uncommon in every aspect of life. God is uncommon, and as we are made in His image, we are uncommon too. We must apply God’s word in every area of our lives and trust Him always. “Uncommon” fills us with God’s unconditional love, to inspire us to become the most uncommon women ever.

Miriam Jacob


Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World – by Joanna Weaver


Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World
Finding Intimacy with God in the Busyness of Life

by Joanna Weaver
WaterBrook & Multnomah

Pub Date: 18 Jul 2000. ISBN 9781578562589. PRICE $14.99


All who love Jesus long to experience intimacy with and service for Him. Like Mary, we yearn to sit at the Lord’s feet. Jesus tenderly invites us to choose “the better part” – a joyful life of intimacy with the Lover of our souls. that presses us into service for Him. Joanna Weaver shows us how to draw closer to our Lord, in ever-deepening devotion, strengthening our service with even greater joy. In music to our souls, with a heart that sings and a voice that rings out loud and clear, Joanna invites us to daily communion with Christ. With candor, humor, and passion, Joanna Weaver invites us to cultivate a ‘Mary heart’ that delights in top-priority time with God. The real-life story of the two sisters of Bethany is the story of our lives too. When Jesus and his disciples visited Bethany, Martha opened her home to him. Mary sat at the Lord’s feet, listening intently to Him, with eyes for Him alone. It is intriguing to have a Mary Heart in a Martha World. Welling up in our hearts is a passionate hunger, an unquenchable thirst, a fervent calling to love God the Father, to know Jesus Christ His Son, and the sweet fellowship of the Holy Spirit, in a deep heart-to-heart intimacy.

Martha was distracted by all the preparations. She asked Jesus, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her” – (Luke 10:38–42). Martha is the Queen of the Kitchen, preparing a banquet fit for the Messiah. She is a party planner extraordinaire, a paragon of efficiency, “Where’s Mary? Has anyone seen Mary? Angry and frustrated, Martha finally found Mary, sitting at the Master’s feet. She had eyes only for Jesus. Martha interrupts Jesus, confident that He will take her side. Mary should help her to prepare the meal. Jesus gently rebukes her, telling her Mary has chosen “the better part,” which will not be taken away from her.

Mary and Martha are mentioned only three times in the Bible: Luke 10:38–42, John 11:1–44, and John 12:1–11. Mary took time to taste the love of Jesus. Faced with the same choice of work or worship, Mary chose “the better part,” available to both Mary and Martha, and to us too, regardless of our gifts, talents and personalities. It’s a free, voluntary choice. We can either take it or leave it. The choice is exclusively ours. Mary sees the joy and winsomeness in Jesus and is instantly drawn to Him. Jesus, the Son of God, drew Mary out into his circle of friends. He speaks with a voice like the sound of many waters. His magnetic words contain new life. Mary creeps closer, listening intently to Jesus. She is unable to move – except closer to Jesus. His words draw her into His heart. Despite her natural reticence, she kneels at his feet. His teaching reveals truth to her hungry heart. Mary allows Martha to serve while she listens to Jesus. She presses closer and closer to Jesus. Martha’s call is drowned by the call of her Master, the call to come, to listen and to be blessed.

Let us follow Mary to the feet of Jesus. He bids us to come. He can give us a Mary heart in a Martha world. Faith and trust comes only at Jesus’ feet. undergo a transformation right before our eyes: a holy makeover. The two sisters of Bethany are transformed. Martha becomes meek and Mary becomes courageous. God calls us to intimacy through Jesus Christ. At first, Martha opened her home but not her heart. She almost missed getting to know Jesus. Mary went all out for Jesus. God’s kingdom is a paradox. He desires companionship. “Be still and know that I am God.” He looks for people to pour his life into. We must draw closer to the Father’s heart. As we spend time with God, He gives us grace to lift the heaviest burdens. The “only one thing needed – the better part” is found at his feet. The gift of availability is what God cherishes most. Mary’s gift was availability. She sat at His feet. She was available for Him. A deeper friendship only requires a heart open and ready to receive. We must be lavish in our love, to be filled with His love, that flows out into service. Love starts at His feet.

Miriam Jacob



Victoria & Abdul (Movie Tie-In): The True Story of the Queen’s Closest Confidant – by Shrabani Basu

9780525434412 - 693 KB

Category: Historical Figure Biographies & Memoirs | European World History | Domestic Politics

Paperback: 352 Pages | Vintage BooksKnopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Penguin Random House, Aug 29, 2017 | ISBN 9780525434412. Price | $16.00.

Reviewer: Miriam Jacob


Queen Elizabeth II , great great granddaughter of Queen Victoria, graciously granted permission to Shrabani Basu to use the Royal Archives at Windsor CastleSir Alexander Reid and Lady Michaela Reid gave Shrabani Basu complete access to the Reid Archives. Lady Michaela Reid , wife of the grandson of Sir James Reid (personal physician to Queen Victoria), discovered Sir James’ papers in the 1960s in Ellon Castle in Aberdeenshire. Her book, Ask Sir James, was critically acclaimed and reprinted by Eland Books


Among royal biographies, “Victoria and Abdul” stands out in distinction, different from all others, due to its revelations of the relationship between Queen Victoria and her Indian secretary, Munshi Abdul Karim. The true historical facts must be revealed to all those who care. Queen Victoria defined an entire era and etched her name into history by her dynamic personality.

Shrabani Basu creates a very humane portrait of the iconic monarch. The Queen’s irresistible sincerity, unaffected simplicity and transparent truthfulness shone in the spotlight of conscientious duty. Reigning from 1837 to 1901, she became the second longest reigning monarch in Britain, for over sixty-three years.

At the height of the British empire, a young Muslim influenced its sovereign, reverberating in shockwaves across the royal court. For Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887, Abdul Karim, a 24-year-old assistant clerk from India, arrived in England to be an attendant. The Queen, impressed with the tall, dignified young man, made him her Indian secretary, and most trusted confidant. Their discussions covered philosophical, political and practical issues.

The Queen titled Karim as ‘Munshi’ or teacher. In 1897, facing a near revolt in the Royal Household against Abdul Karim, the unprejudiced Queen Victoria backed Karim unconditionally, oblivious to all accusations against him. 

“Victoria & Abdul” is a stunning piece of historical work, a well researched chronicle of the English court. Unrecorded in the annals of history, the startling revelations of this great relationship story of all time, survived destruction, languishing in obscurity for a hundred years, until Shrabani Basu unraveled its complicated tangles.

This book is highly recommended for public edification about the last thirteen years of the life of Queen Victoria, who shaped the ‘Victorian Age’ for posterity, making it the most splendid era in the history of Britain.

Miriam Jacob

A Major Motion Picture, by BBC Films, Working Title Films & Universal Pictures International, releasing September 22, 2017, by Focus Features.


Directed by Stephen Frears | Screenplay by Lee Hall | Based on “Victoria & Abdul” by Shrabani Basu | Production company: BBC Films; Working Title Films | Distributed by Focus Features

Release date | September 15, 2017 (United Kingdom) | September 22, 2017 (United States) | Running time | 106 minutes | Country: United Kingdom & United States

Victoria & Abdul is an upcoming British-American biographical drama film directed by Stephen Frears, written by Lee Hall, based on the book by Shrabani Basu, and on the real-life relationship between Queen Victoria and her Indian servant Abdul Karim. The film is scheduled to be screened at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival.

The film is co-produced by Working Title Films and BBC Films, and co-financed by BBC and Focus Features. Focus handles the domestic distribution rights while Universal Pictures International handles all the other countries. Principal photography on the film began on September 15, 2016, at Osborne House on the Isle of Wight in the United Kingdom.




Shrabani Basu was born in Kolkata and grew up in Dhaka, Kathmandu and Delhi. She moved to London in 1987 and is a correspondent for the Kolkata-based newspapers Ananda Bazar Patrika and The Telegraph. She is also the author of Curry: The Story of the Nation’s Favourite Dish and the critically acclaimed biography Spy Princess: The Life of Noor Inayat Khan. She lives in London.