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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Review: A Kingsbury Collection by Karen Kingsbury

A Kingsbury Collection by Karen Kingsbury contains 3 full length novels: Where Yesterday Lives, When Joy Comes to Stay, and On Every Side.  It is a paperback book that is 752 pages long.

Where Yesterday Lives- Ellen Barrett, the oldest of five siblings grew up in a very happy house.  But as the children got older, things began to change and they were no longer the close knit family she remembered from her childhood without really knowing why.  After learning of the death of her beloved father, Ellen returns home to say good-bye, to make peace with her family, her past, and her future.

When Joy Comes to Stay- To those looking from the outside, Maggie Stovall has the perfect life.  A wonderful successful husband Ben, great job, beautiful home, and sweet foster children that they take care of.  But there is more than meets the eye.  Maggie has carried a terrible burden, a secret for many years that causes her to sink into a horrible depression.  Joy is a foster child who has been abused, broken, and thrown away.  But she still has an unshakable trust in God.  God has a plan that can bring healing to them all.

On Every Side-  Faith Evans has to take a stand, one that could ruin her career and cause her to come against a man she never imagined would be her enemy.  Jordan Riley is an attorney who fights against God under the guise of "separation on church and state."  He is demanding that Faith's beloved town's Jesus statue that has stood for over 100 years in the park be taken down.  Can Faith be strong enough to stand firm, face the opposition, and trust God?

This is the first time I have ever read any of Karen Kingsbury's books.  She came highly recommended so when I saw this book come up for review, I jumped at the chance to review it.  Karen Kingsbury has a way of drawing you right into the story and caring about all of her characters.  Her stories have a wonderful message.  But, they are so sad.  I am a very fast reader, often finishing a good novel in a week-end (if I can get in enough reading time in the evenings), but this book took me forever to finish, and not because it was 3 novels in one, but because there was just so much sadness and emotion that I couldn't sit and read it for long periods of time.  It was weighing me down.  Some people may enjoy these types of books and find comfort reading about people and situations that can relate to and seeing how the characters overcame that situation. I am not one of those people.  Reading a book with all of that sadness and emotion and being able to relate to parts of it does not comfort me, but instead drags me down.  The stories have a great message, if you can wade through the rest to get to it.  Out of the three books in this novel, On Every Side was the one I liked the best, but even it had a lot of sadness with Faith  dealing with the recent loss of her dad, and Jordan still trying to cope with his mother dying of cancer in his teens and him and his sister being separated and thrown into foster care.  But, it was a good modern telling of the story of Jericho in the Bible.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of A Kingsbury Collection for the purpose of writing a fair and honest review.  All opinions are my own and I received no other compensation.  I am disclosing this in accordance to FTC regulations.
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