Okay, so, call me crazy, but when I got this book, I thought it was a new release, as I hadn't seen this cover before (I remember the pictures more than I do the titles). I LOVE Karen Kingsbury's books! So, I immediately dove right in. But after the first 2 chapters, I felt as though I could totally write this book without reading it. Given the title, and then a little background in the first two chapters, I had it pegged. But, I love her writing, so I was obviously going to finish it either way, so I continued. Well, it didn't take me long to realize that I COULD have retold this story without reading it...but not because it was totally predicatable. No!! It was because I had read it before...like 10+ years ago!! It was one of the very first KK books I had ever been introduced to. One of the books that made me love her writing and search for more books authored by Kingsbury. It had just been long enough ago that it was only vaguely familiar to me! hahaha...sigh...only me...
So, on to my review...I've already told you that I love how Karen Kingsbury writes...I loved it ten (plus) years ago...I love it now. It always draws me in to the story so much that I feel a part of it...I get angry with some characters, laugh and cry with others. Her books, and this one in particular, is written with romance, mystery, and intrigue. Life isn't "cookie cutter" perfect...just as life in real life isn't...but God is always shown faithful, even when things don't go as one would expect or want. Her characters are human...they make mistakes...they live with consequences of their mistakes...they feel the love of God and His faithfulness to us, even when we fail Him. Even when life isn't what we think it should be, He's still there...with His perfect plan for our lives...if we just trust and follow Him. This book focuses heavily on that.
Without giving away the storyline, I will say that this book includes many topics relevant to today's time...the increasing lack of religious freedom we have in our country, the targeting of Christians as "intolerant" and "fanatic", the increased secularism in our schools, sex and pregnancy outside of marriage, alcoholism, single parenting, adultery, divorce, destructive lying and gossip, but also, God's faithfulness, His mercy and forgiveness, second (and third) chances, His unconditional love, and our call as Christians to be witnesses to the world.
I think most all of us can relate personally to at least a small portion of the story of the book. We all know someone who has been or is going through something. What a great uplifting reminder this book is to us all, that God hasn't forgotten or forsaken His own. He loves us and DOES have a perfect plan for us and our future. Life may not go as we would have once dreamt it would, but that doesn't mean God is finished with us yet.
I would recommend this book and any of Kingsbury's other many titles for any young adult or older to read. You won't regret it (except for maybe the inability to put it down until you finish it)...
**On a side note, this paperback version is very small in comparison to her typical paperbacks. I didn't like that...it was harder to hold open, etc., and reminded me more of the typical "adult romance novels" that I don't read. Obviously, that doesn't affect what's inside the book...but my personal preference is the larger, original paperbacks.**
I received this book for free from Multonomah Publishing through Blogging for Books for this review. 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 Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”