Finkbeiner knows how to write a touching story. This one includes losing a spouse, family relationships, local and national racial issues, a small business surviving a chain store moving in, mental illness, and more. For a senior reader like me, it was a journey down memory lane, remembering the music, fashions, and headlines of the early 1960s. The characters are engaging, regular people living life as they face great challenges in life. My favorite was little Hugo. He was a darling.
Perhaps a warning to potential readers is in order. Betty, the main character, loses her husband when she is just forty years old. Potential readers who have recently lost a spouse may find this book painfully emotional. The same goes for readers who struggle with depression or have helped a family member struggling with depression and suicidal desires. Finkbeiner does a good job covering both of these situations but for some, it may be too hard to remain unaffected by the deeply emotional story.
I enjoyed this novel. It took me a while to get the historical setting as a date was not given at the beginning. And the ending, while touching, I felt was unreasonable. Everything just doesn't turn out so well so fast in real life.
You can read an excerpt here.
My rating: 4/5 stars.
Susie Finkbeiner is a CBA bestselling author, serves as the Fiction Readers Summit planning committees, volunteers at Ada Bible Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and speaks at retreats and women's events across the country. She and her husband have three children and live in Western Michigan. Photo Credit: Bree Rose Photos
Revell, 384 pages.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)