Reinventing Leona
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Reinventing Leona

3.4 of 5 stars 3.40  ·  rating details  ·  235 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Leona Harper loves being a pastor's wife. Her impressive resume touts thirty years of coaxing hot water from rusty parsonage plumbing, planning church potlucks, and standing beside her husband while members take potshots at his sermons. Except for the little tiff with her grown children, Leona feels her life is right on track with the wishes of the Almighty . . . until her...more
Kindle Edition, 232 pages
Published (first published June 24th 2011)
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I was viscerally – emotionally – affected by this book. A novel I picked up for the pleasure of reading it and not for the purpose of reviewing, I was completely blown away by the power packed into this debut novel.

The story of a preacher’s wife who becomes the preacher’s widow left me with emotions as though I had lost my own husband. I had such a clear taste of what that grief must be like, but I wasn’t bogged down until I felt as the reader, I couldn’t get out of the emotional trauma.

There i...more
I was viscerally – emotionally – affected by this book. A novel I picked up for the pleasure of reading it and not for the purpose of reviewing, I was completely blown away by the power packed into this debut novel.

The story of a preacher’s wife who becomes the preacher’s widow left me with emotions as though I had lost my own husband. I had such a clear taste of what that grief must be like, but I wasn’t bogged down until I felt as the reader, I couldn’t get out of the emotional trauma.

There i...more
This is a Christian fiction novel so there is not cussing or sexual content. And I found that I enjoyed it anyway. The book is not preachy by any means. It was a great story, there is sadness and there is triumph.

What I liked about this book?
That it was about survival and finding your place in the world. I loved Leona'a resolve and her ability to land on her feet. She stood up for herself when it counted most. Her old evil mama was a hoot though.

What I did not like?

IT was kind of slow. I found...more
Carla Stewart
Love the sparkling voice of Lynne in her debut book. Terrific summer read!
My book club read this book and our assessment of it made for a rather tense meeting. In a group of Christians I am a Secular Humanist. I think that having a sort of outsider's view gave me a very objective perspective. I went in to the meeting thinking that someone would likely agree with me. I was very wrong.

Understand that I am not an angry Atheist by any stretch of the imagination but I felt that there was SO much potential for this novel to show the evolution of the main character, a logic...more
B.J. Robinson
Reinventing Leona by Lynne Gentry published by Tyndale's Digital First program in June 2011 is full of figurative language and realistic characters. I loved Lynne's writing style and her creative use of words and quips. The book hooked me with the first chapter, and I wanted to keep reading to find out what happened. It's fast paced and an easy read. Though one part of the novel was predictable, there were a few surprises along the way, and I could just picture the characters, since they were so...more
I liked the concept behind the story line: a pastor's wife, living in the church-owned parsonage, is abruptly widowed. Always dependent on her husband's strong personality and comfortable in her role as his helper, she now must become her own person and make her own life.

Unfortunately the writing never quite invites you in. The plot is overly segmented and often difficult to follow. The reader never actually experiences Leona reinvented, but only rehashed. Scriptures are placed carefully and p...more
Leona has been a pastor's wife for 30 years. She's learned to put on a happy face and not complain about anything. Suddenly, she finds herself a widow and has to find out who she really is.....

I want to say that I didn't really enjoy the book until I got to page 100 or so. The author uses a few too many similes in her writing and some things were a bit 'stilted' and didn't flow very well. The story was a bit sad - the parishoners were very self-centered after their pastor's death and seemed to n...more
A free Christian fiction book that I got for my Kindle. Leona Harper is a pastor's wife, and has been all of her life. Her husband has pastored the same church for 18 years. They've lived in the parsonage and raised their two kids in that house. Her son is now in law school and her daughter in med school. As the book opens, the pastor is preaching his sermon the Sunday before Thanksgiving, when he falls over dead in the pulpit. So, Leona has to figure out what to do with the rest of her life, he...more
I read this book because it was free on Kindle, and I wasn't expecting to love this book as much as I do.
When Leona's husband passes away, her world collapses. She loses her husband and her position as a pastor's wife. The character development in Leona as she finds her way is authentic and beautiful. The look inside the role of a pastor's wife is interesting, and the quirky church members provide some levity.
Rotating among Leona, her daughter, and her son's point of view, the book gives a true...more
A "light" summertime read, certainly not deeply thought provoking. Growing up in the Protestant church "culture" I could easily relate to the humor in the book as Leona, the gracious pastor's wife, deals with her quirky congregants, hypocritical elders, and demoralizing church politics. At times, the story moved rather slowly and predictably but by the end I was chuckling at the way Leona, with her steady faith, was able to bring everyone together and see everything "work for the good" in spite...more
Sandy Sandmeyer
A nice story of Leona, a pastor's wife. Her husband drops dead as he starts his sermon one Sunday morning. This causes her children to come back home to face their mom and all her expectations. Leona has to reinvent herself after being a stay-at-home mom for all those years, because she needs to get a job and start supporting herself. She has the help of her best friend, Roxie. A great book and an easy read.
She's a Pastors Wife--Except Now She's Not

Leona Harper is the quintessential pastors wife. She knows exactly how to be the person the parishioners expect. From little old ladies who stop by before Sunday services to...

To see the complete review visit readgreatfiction:
this was a fascinating read for me. I really liked the way that the author dealt with the way that Leona had to take charge in an area which she hadn't been in charge of before and had to face the reality of the things she'd been stuffing down over the years and now she had to step up and take charge and face those fears.
This was a good book, with some twists and turns that were unexpected. I was a little frustrated with her relationship with her kids, seemed like the standard expectation syndrome with the adult kids rebelling in the face of that.

I did enjoy it, though!
The book is about preacher's wife, how she dealt with her husband passing away (he died in an interesting way), how she coped with this, how her family got be there for her, and supported her. The wife has crazy mother, it's amusing to read about her. :)
A fantastic read! So simple and predictable yet heart wrenching and incredibly funny at all the right moments.
Amazing characterization. Humor riddled with real emotion and real circumstances. I love this author.
Carol Walther
Could relate to a few things but most did not match my experience as a pastor's wife.
Predictable and kind of silly. I felt no real connection to the characters.
predictable story, lackluster characters and misuse of Scripture.
A light read with lots of humor.
Predicable. Trite. Poorly written.
Free on Kindle. A good summer read
Catherine Richmond
"Living in a parsonage is not for sissies," Leona's husband, the pastor, reminds her. And Leona quickly finds out, being the pastor's widow is no walk in the park either.

Leona is sweet, sassy, and spiritual. I loved how she and her son and daughter saw their family in such different ways. And I loved the quirky collection of characters surrounding her, especially her best friend Roxie and the tension between this Episcopalian and the members of Leona's (Baptist?) church. The author's prose is v...more
US churches and their idea of being Christian are very alien to my personal concept of Christianity. Christian doesn't mean doormat. This was an enjoyable read for the first two thirds of the book but the last third felt rushed and the storylines were incomplete.
Jul 26, 2011 DK marked it as lend-me
Shelves: fiction
Available to lend through B&N "Lend Me" - see link below for info and reviews. Leave a comment if you are interested in borrowing.
Karen Logan
slow at first. I didn't enjoy it until the last third of the book. That's why I give it a 4 instead of a 5.
Apr 01, 2013 Tanya rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2013, nook
Good story about a pastor's wife who has to learn to just be herself after the loss of her husband.
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This girl who grew up on a Kansas dairy farm never wanted to be a writer, but she has always been a storyteller. Her mother called it "Selling wind in a bag." Lynne started out writing plays and skits. Then in a moment of sheer insanity, she decided to take a stab at writing full-length novels. Reinventing Leona was her first and it is no longer in print. Healer of Carthage is her latest novel, re...more
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