Karen Jones Gowen




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Karen Jones Gowen

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About this author

Born and raised in central Illinois, the daughter of a Methodist minister from Indiana and a school teacher from Nebraska, Karen has down-to-earth Midwestern roots.

She attended Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, then transferred to the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana. After converting to Mormonism at the age of 20, she transferred to Brigham Young University in Provo, UT, where she met her future husband. She obtained her degree at BYU in English and American Literature.

Karen and Bruce have lived in Utah, Illinois, California and Washington, currently residing in Panajachel, Guatemala. They are the parents of ten children. Not surprisingly, family relationships are a recurring theme in Karen's writing.


My last post was in January. Since then, my husband and I have moved entirely to Panajachel, Guatemala. For more on our life and routine in our new location, see my Coming Down the Mountain blog. I never post here as often as I do there since people sign up via email to my website, […]
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Published on June 16, 2014 14:54 • 9 views
Average rating: 3.47 · 300 ratings · 82 reviews · 6 distinct works · Similar authors
Farm Girl
3.4 of 5 stars 3.40 avg rating — 151 ratings — published 2007 — 2 editions
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House of Diamonds
3.61 of 5 stars 3.61 avg rating — 41 ratings — published 2011 — 2 editions
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Uncut Diamonds
3.36 of 5 stars 3.36 avg rating — 39 ratings — published 2009 — 2 editions
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Lighting Candles in the Snow
3.52 of 5 stars 3.52 avg rating — 33 ratings — published 2012 — 2 editions
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Farm Girl Country Cooking: ...
3.67 of 5 stars 3.67 avg rating — 36 ratings — published 2013 — 2 editions
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Afraid of Everything
0.0 of 5 stars 0.00 avg rating — 0 ratings — expected publication 2014
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More books by Karen Jones Gowen…
Uncut Diamonds House of Diamonds
A Mormon Family Saga (2 books)
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3.4875 of 5 stars 3.49 avg rating — 80 ratings

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House of Diamonds (Literature & Fiction)
1 chapters   —   updated Sep 13, 2010 11:46PM
Description: Two sisters, one facing opportunity, the other tragedy. Can their bond endure? When the lives of two sisters take a much different course than expected And one sister is on the verge of realizing her lifelong dream while the other faces a terrible tragedy To give a voice to a beloved baby who had none To show the incredible power that comes to families when they pull together to overcome challenges. At these times, a house of pain can become a house of diamonds.

Karen's Recent Updates

Karen rated a book 4 of 5 stars
A Watershed Year by Susan Schoenberger
A Watershed Year
by Susan Schoenberger (Goodreads Author)
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I gobbled this up just as I did Schoenberger's latest novel, The Virtues of Oxygen. Her writing challenges my intellect and warms my heart. With A Watershed Year, there were several key relationships the main character, Lucy, was involved in, but the...more
Karen rated a book 4 of 5 stars
The Virtues of Oxygen by Susan Schoenberger
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I would have most certainly given this book 5 stars 2/3 of the way through. I was loving every moment. But then it kind of fell apart at the end. Holly's financial was resolved too quickly and easily, her challenges just kind of disappeared, but the...more
Karen rated a book 1 of 5 stars
Garden of Lies by Eileen Goudge
Garden of Lies
by Eileen Goudge (Goodreads Author)
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I REALLY wanted to like this book. I was so excited to open it up, a really long family saga to get my teeth into and escape from my world into some other family's messed up lives. But about 1/4 of the way in, when there was more backstory than story...more
Karen rated a book 3 of 5 stars
How Dogs Love Us by Gregory Berns
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This wasn't the insightful dog book I was expecting. It was mostly scientific journal type writing about the author's experiments with training his dog and others for the MRI. The point would be to scan the dog brain and find out what they are thinki...more
Karen rated a book 5 of 5 stars
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
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How interesting the description of Life of Pi says "a fantasy adventure novel" yet it is written like a memoir, with such veracity one can't help but wonder if it was a true story. It's a wonderful book, and worth all the praise and awards it achieve...more
Karen and 1 other person liked Deanna's review of A Scattered Life:
A Scattered Life by Karen McQuestion
" I read all the reviews for A Scattered Life before I bought it and I was a little anxious. There are some extremely negative reviews, but most failed to say why they didn't like the book, so I bought it anyway.

I sat down to read it and couldn't p... " Read more of this review »
Karen and 1 other person liked Linda's review of A Scattered Life:
A Scattered Life by Karen McQuestion
" Karen McQuestion writes for those of us women who need to identify with other women who don't talk about how much they make, women who didn't set aside their promising editorial careers for family and whine about it, women who don't have summer ho... " Read more of this review »
Karen rated a book 5 of 5 stars
A Scattered Life by Karen McQuestion
A Scattered Life
by Karen McQuestion (Goodreads Author)
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With A Scattered Life I have discovered a new favorite author. Can't wait to read all the other of her novels. This book was purely a joy to read. From the first chapter I realized Skyla was a character I wanted to spend some time with, and all the o...more
Karen rated a book 4 of 5 stars
Love and Madness by Karen Truesdell Riehl
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The reason I enjoy memoirs are to see how other people make choices for their lives, even when they aren't the same decisions I'd make. Or rather, ESPECIALLY when they are not. That's why I get annoyed by reviews that give this memoir 1 or 2 stars be...more
Karen rated a book 5 of 5 stars
If You Want to Write by Brenda Ueland
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A simple little book, formatted for the Kindle and republished, put up for free one time, and I downloaded it since I compulsively collect books about writing. Not the How-to of writing dialogue or description or plot-outlining, but books about the r...more
More of Karen's books…
“A folklore study differs from most writing, in that the tale is told in the voice of the individual telling the story, not by the collector.”
Karen Jones Gowen, Farm Girl

“These memories are part of my heritage, the fabric of my personality, and as real to me as the land itself.”
Karen Jones Gowen, Farm Girl

“In her daydreams, they aged miraculously, she still trim with a blond ponytail, standing next to her strong, tall husband with his thick, curly dark hair and straight white teeth. Money was never an issue.”
Karen Jones Gowen, Uncut Diamonds

19652 The Debutante Ball — 14 members — last activity Jan 10, 2011 02:41PM
The debut and subsequent titles of the women of The Debutante Ball, a group blog for debut authors, now in its third season. Take a peek out our books...more
36442 Author Talk Book Club — 1425 members — last activity 23 hours, 1 min ago
This group is dedicated to authors and anyone interested in how the process of writing evolves. We will share various techniques, inspirations and disc...more



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