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Waiting for the Light to Change
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Waiting for the Light to Change

3.3  ·  Rating Details ·  102 Ratings  ·  38 Reviews
Sarah's had difficult years before - what high school teacher hasn't? - but this year is the worst. Although Sarah's managed as a single mother well enough, she's frequently exhausted and still angry at the curves life has thrown her way. Shepherding her painfully shy daughter, Jenny, through high school as well as the return of her ex-husband after a twelve-year absence s ...more
Paperback, 329 pages
Published May 1st 2008 by Cedar Fort
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Mar 13, 2009 Heather rated it really liked it
I hated this book. I loved this book. I couldn't decide. I felt uncomfortable and sometimes complete surprise. The main character--Sarah--was selfish, annoying, hateful, yet totally understandable on some levels. She seemed to be an excellent teacher, yet she deliberately sabotaged two students who she didn't like--for good reason of course. She pitted her children against her ex-husband, causing them lifetime damage.

This is an LDS novel, and the message was clear--bitterness and the Spirit can'
Katie W
Aug 24, 2008 Katie W rated it liked it
Shelves: lds-fiction
I guess I get too into a book sometimes. I could NOT believe how childish Sarah (the main character) was! She was a very bitter person who seemed so normal and nice one minute and then like a complete psychopath the next. I wanted to like the book, since it was set in the area where I grew up, but it just didn't really come together for me. I expected to see growth and didn't feel like it happened.
Aug 04, 2008 Megan rated it really liked it
Written by a former debate coach from my Utah high school, this book takes me back to home. I recognized many places in the book. A very quick paced book that I didn't want to put down. I cared about the characters and kept hoping for life to get better for Sarah's family. Very Mormon.
Apr 26, 2010 Laura rated it really liked it
Generally speaking, my enjoyment of a book is enhanced when I like the main character in the story. Sarah Williams is a 40 something, divorced mother of three teaching high school English in her home town in northern Utah. She is also one of the two coaches for the school debate team. Sarah is a woman who has become angry “at the curves life has thrown her way”.

She is particularly bitter about her ex-husband, the father of her three children and has spent the years since the divorce berating her
May 26, 2009 Marlene rated it liked it
I read this book because it has won some kind of LDS author award. I don't usually expect much from these types of books but found this one keeping my attention. I liked recognizing the Utah setting. Although I could relate to the characters I didn't like a lot of them including the main character. The Mormon aspect is there, seemed a little negative at times. I liked the high school, debate coach angle. It is a quick read and that is good. Fine book, I didn't love it. It doesn't fall into my th ...more
It is a rare thing for a writer to write about a main character as flawed as the main character in this book and yet keep her audience reading. I found this book fascinating and very real, I'm honestly shocked this is Haws first novel. The writing is beautiful, the story is compelling, and the main character is real enough to develop both sympathy on the part of the reader as well as my wanting to slap her. I look forward to Haws next book as this one was off the beaten path of the genre and yet ...more
Jan 26, 2010 Dora rated it did not like it
Shelves: lds-books
I did not like this book. The main character was so mean and the fact that she underminded students she didn't like and got away with it is unexcusable. Her daughter suffered for what she did, but she never did show any remorse towards the way she treated the boys. If this were real life, she would have been fired on the spot. And I didn't think the love story was a two way love story. On Clayton's part yes. On Sarah's no. She never showed any real emotion towards him. And the end was kind of ch ...more
May 26, 2008 Clytee rated it really liked it
This was fun because Annette in is a very good friend of mine. I could hear her voice, and hear her read it out loud in my head because it was written just as she would speak. This book really brought home the point to me that books are written out of thin air, they are based on experiences of the author. I know Annette has been in so many of these situations (debate coach, parent of teenagers, Mormon, resident of Logan, Utah etc). It moved and was hard to put down. My only disappointment was th ...more
Sep 15, 2008 Lydia rated it liked it
The reason I gave this book a 3 instead of a 4 was because I was unable to connect with the main character. I thought she acted very immature at times. I enjoyed the story and most the characters.

The point that really hit home with me however is how often in life people made life-changing decisions with inadequate information. And how others' interference actually can do irreperable harm.

The ending was powerful.
Feb 03, 2017 Sherry rated it liked it
Interesting book book and well written. Sarah, the protagonist, is not an easy person to like but then she hasn't had an easy life working and raising three kids with a husband who left. There are several stories in one here, all of them interesting. I never knew how difficult having a debate team is to teach and prepare and there were quite a few interesting ideas about life and friendships and how we all need those friendships to get along in life.
Sep 06, 2009 Misty rated it it was ok
I did not like this book. It was well written (hence the 2 stars) but I couldn't stand the main character. I was so irritated with her that I almost quit reading several times. But, I suppose as a testament to the writing, I wanted to know what was going to happen next so I finished it. But when I finished I think I said "ugh" outloud and was thrilled to list it on paperback swap so I can get something better.
Dec 30, 2011 Jessie rated it really liked it
Shelves: lds-fiction
I really liked this book; I think it's a good example of where Mormon fiction can go: characters that struggle with real dilemmas and don't always find easy answers but still keep their faith. The main character is actually not even that likeable or sympathetic, but that just makes her growth through the book even more believable. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for a good, uplifting read that still feels like it deals with real people and real issues.
Oct 19, 2008 Madelle rated it liked it
This book was a quick read with a plot that captured my attention. Since I know the author, it was fun to read about a place where we lived for many years. The writing sounds just like the author's Christmas letter! The plot moved quickly with quite a few characters. I had a bit of a hard time believing that an adult teacher could be quite that vindictive in spite of her circumstances. The conclusion left a few things up in the air, perhaps paving the way for a sequel.
Jul 09, 2009 Angie rated it it was ok
Shelves: book-club-picks
For and LDS novel, it's not nearly as cheesy as the name would suggest. I started out really liking it, but then by the end the main characters issues never really seemed to resolve. They just seemed to keep climaxing. There were some humorous parts, but overall it was just an ok read.

I did get to meet the author at a book club. That was fun to discuss her book and characters a little.
Oct 17, 2008 Rachel rated it liked it
I cannot believe the anger and bitterness the woman in this story harbored. It was like watching a suspense movie and when you feel like telling the character to watch out because something's around the corner waiting to jump out at them. It actually gave me anxiety to think that she could make such terrible choices based on her emotions and mess up her kids lives more than they already were. Despite that, I did more or less like the book. Didn't love it though.
Oct 28, 2010 Susan rated it really liked it
This is a real story about forgiveness! Sarah's held onto her hatred for her ex-husband for so many years that now with a difficult school year--two evil students--she's making choices that would raise a professional eyebrow. The thing is, she's a very good teacher and drama coach. Her children walk on eggshells around her. Several times throughout the story, I wanted to slap her! It takes a real trama for Sarah's eyes to open and understanding to sink in.
Aug 12, 2008 Cathy rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book and liked knowing the area she talked about and places that they went. I know teachers have a hard job and it's too bad when parents don't back up the teacher or at least try to get both sides of the story. I'm glad it had a good ending and I was happy about how things were resolved.
Sep 02, 2008 Kathryn rated it it was amazing
great book about dealing with the unexpected trial of life and how to deal with anger. This is about a divorced mother left with 3 young kids and her struggle financially and emotionally after her husband leaves and she returns to the workforce as a teacher. Shows how anger and resentment can take over your rational thinking and how choses don't just affect you.
Jul 12, 2008 Shanda rated it did not like it
I really tried to get into this book, but I just couldn't read more than a few pages at a time. I had a hard time finding a purpose in the book and the characters didn't endear themselves to me so I returned the book to the library without finishing it. It could be my mood lately. Maybe I'll try again some other day.
Jan 10, 2017 Marcelle rated it it was amazing
Read this for the New Canaan book club. The author came and talked. Great book. One thing I really liked was she didn't focus on one issue in the book. There was divorce, child who is social isolate and chooses bad boyfriend, main character is a teacher so you have teacher issues, student/teacher issues, ex husband moves back, etc. Each one was meaty.

Really recommend the book.
Kim Kiewra
Dec 19, 2016 Kim Kiewra rated it it was ok
Shelves: lds-fiction
I was waiting for some big grand romantic ending (like in all the other LDS fiction books I read) and it never came! I felt so unsettled with the end of the book. It made me mad. It wasn't a cliff hanger, I just felt like things weren't really wrapped up. The rest of the book kept me hooked though (mostly because I was waiting for more juicy romance).
Jul 18, 2010 Karijean31 rated it did not like it
I was in the mood for a fun, light romance and this was not it. It was hard to read about a divorced mother's struggles with her family. It would have been a good read if I was in a serious mood but since I wasn't, I didn't like it at all.
Jul 11, 2008 Kim rated it it was amazing
One of my best friends wrote this book, so I'm a little biased. However, I think it has some really engaging characters and the story keeps you going. If you were a high school debater, you will really relate to this book as the main character is a high school debate coach.
Apr 23, 2009 Karla rated it liked it
It started off pretty well, but the last third of the book seemed very rushed and choppy. The emotional climax of the book came out of nowhere (not enough build-up) and I didn't really get the love story. I wanted to hear more about Jenny and Tom.
Aug 29, 2009 Emily rated it it was ok
This was a pretty good book, but I had a really hard time liking the main character. She went through many struggles in her life and I feel she handled 99% of them the wrong way. But I guess it taught me to not handle things like she would??
Feb 02, 2009 Kristine rated it it was amazing
This book really made me think--what kind of damage do I do to myself and others when I am unwilling to forgive and move on? For those of you who haven't read this yet, I would advise that you not read the acknowledgements until after you read the book--little bit of a spoiler therein!
Feb 02, 2015 Ann rated it it was ok
The main character was so bitter and angry and seemed to make it a point to spread her unhappiness with everyone around her. The writing was good, but the main character really put me off. By the end, things seemed to be moving forward, but not really resolved.
Jul 10, 2008 Mandy rated it really liked it
I particularly enjoyed this book because it was written by my friend's mom (real people can write whole books?!?) and is set in Logan, where I went to school. Loved the main character's sassiness, and her flaws made her endearing. A fun read!
Dec 14, 2010 Emily rated it it was ok
I'm not sure why I even finished this book. I didn't like it from the first chapter and it never got any better. Completely unbelievable storyline. Not good writing. Poor editing (how hard is it to catch typos BEFORE publishing a book!?!)
Apr 09, 2009 Polly rated it liked it
This was nice book. LDS author so a little predictable, but for an LDS author she did pretty good. You know in the end everything is going to end good. And sometime that is nice to read.
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Annette Haws’s literary strengths are based upon her experiences in the classroom. She began her teaching career as a junior high teacher in Richmond, Utah and ended it teaching Sophomore English at Murray High School in Salt Lake City. However, her favorite assignment was a five year period at Logan High School teaching English, coaching debate and mock trial, and watching the antics of her own t ...more
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