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Before I Saw You

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  257 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Folks are dying fast as the ash trees in the southern Indiana town ravaged by the heroin epidemic, where Jaycee Givens lives with nothing more than a thread of hope and a quirky neighbor, Sudie, who rescues injured wildlife. After a tragedy leaves her mother in prison, Jaycee is carrying grief and an unplanned pregnancy she conceals because she trusts no one, including the ...more
Paperback, 379 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by Tyndale House Publishers
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Average rating 4.34  · 
Rating details
 ·  257 ratings  ·  70 reviews

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Molly Jaber (Cover To Cover Cafe)
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018-reads
Wow! This is my first ever Amy K. Sorrells novel and it most definitely will not be my last one. This book, it's setting, it's characters, it's messages......all of it absolutely gripped me and took me on an emotional roller coaster ride. I was up, down, sideways, in and out while reading this novel, and it left me with a feeling I haven't had with a book in a long, long time.

As a former street drug abuser, I related with this book on so many levels, with it's work of opioid abuse weaved into th
Amanda Geaney
Jun 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes when I read a really impactful story, I make a note of the author and keep an eye out for any future publications. Amy K. Sorrells was added to this short list after I read her novel, Lead Me Home. Sorrells has a unique voice and I appreciate how she takes believers to task without getting preachy. This new story, Before I Saw You, takes place in a small town in Southern Indiana caught up in the hope-crushing, life-shattering grip of the opioid crisis. While grieving over the destructi ...more
Sandy Griffin
May 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Few books have ever truly touched my soul like "Before I Saw You" has. As a child of adoption, this book stirred thoughts and emotions I thought I'd long ago dealt with. But after reading this book, I've at last been able to forgive my birth mother, and have come to understand what a truly incredible gift she gave me.
The characters in this book were completely believeable and totally relevant to today's society. My family has been deeply touched by the opioid epidemic, and have watched vital, p
Dec 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Seriously, how can this be my first ever Amy Sorrells book?! It boggles the mind when I think about all the literary goodness I've been missing! I'm dumbfounded over this egregious literary lapse! (hanging my head in shame as I vow to do penance.)

So, I was transfixed by Jaycee's story. Emotionally-gutted, heart-pummeled absorbed right to the very last word. And then I mooned around in a weepy stupor of mixed emotions as I tried to process it all.

The author has an uncanny grip on the raw reality
Erin Laramore
May 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such a beautiful story about learning to trust in God and overcoming. Jaycee Givens has grown up on the poor side of her hometown in small town, Indiana. She struggles with not only the poverty, but also the rampant drug abuse all around her. In the midst of this, the unthinkable happens in her family and she finds herself as a young adult on her own. When she finds herself pregnant by a boyfriend who is abusive and unfaithful, she has to decide what to do.

I think many can relate to Ja
Marie Bungard
Jun 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes I read for the pure joy of immersing myself in a good story on a quiet afternoon.  At least, that's what I thought I was going to do when I picked up Before I Saw You by Amy K. Sorrells.  Guess what?  Not so!  The power of grace is so prevalent in these words that I was amazed at how easy it was to include it in a fiction story.

Life is hard!  God is good!  Life is about letting go and letting God.  Cliches? Yes (and no, they are not used in the book).

If anything, life is about choices.
Jun 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Adoption is a topic that is very close to me. My grandmother was adopted. She was loved by two mothers, the one that gave birth to her, loved her and cared for her until she was six weeks, while keeping it a secret from everyone. The second one was the mother that adopted her, an amazing mother whom had nothing, but love for her daughter, her grandchildren and her great grandchildren. She was incredible. Always laughing, and giving something of herself to others.

When I read this story of Jaycee,
Aug 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was quite heart-wrenching for me, yet it was a beautiful story about forgiveness and redemption. It touched on many sensitive subjects, but ended by leaving the characters and this reader filled with hope. I have read all of Amy's books, and she is one of my favorite contemporary authors. ...more
Jun 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I’ve been waiting anxiously for this book to come out! And I was not disappointed! Amy does not shy away from talking about some hard realities of life.
I could easily picture the area as we had just driven through that part of Indiana. And I really cared about the characters.
It’s a convicting book. And a wonderful story of God’s love for us. I highly recommend it!
Heidi Chiavaroli
May 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
An exquisite, emotional tale that gives a glimpse inside the hurt caused by the opioid epidemic and the impossible choices one young woman must make in the wake of its damage. Extremely relevant and lyrically told, this book did not leave me with dry eyes, but it did leave me with a renewed sense of the power of kindness and the beauty and tenacity of hope. Highly recommend! I look forward to reading more of Sorrells's books! ...more
Jun 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cathy Cermele
Jun 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arcs
It took awhile for me to gather my thoughts and get my emotions under control after finishing, Before I Saw You. I have to be honest and admit that I didn't think that I would become so attached to Jaycee, Sudie and some of the other characters in this book.

I think its' because the storyline is so timely given what's happening in society, the drug epidemic, the feeling of hopelessness but more than that, the lost innocence of our youth. Jacycee is a perfect example of that when she takes on the
Amy Koons
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The first three-fourths of this book was decently good, but didn’t really hit me in the gut UNTIL the final chapters when the author portrayed a birth mom’s wrenching decision to give her baby up for adoption in such a real and poignant way. It was a subtle crescendo until it really grabbed me. Yes, adoption is such a wonderful and beautiful thing for the adoptive family and the child, and mostly I just see that side of it and share in the joy of the people I know whose lives have been made bett ...more
Kim Bakos
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: giveaways
This is a great book that touches on so many of today's issues. Its primary issues are the opioid epidemic and domestic violence, things that are becoming all too common today and often remain hidden until they get too big to cover up any longer.
As a Christian reader, I love the various issues that come up in people of faith. This book's main theme is about how He cares for us through the trials we endure. He may not protect us for everything that is bad, put His hand is on us, sustaining us, up
Jul 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This book was incredible, so much feeling was packed into these pages bringing about such an intense emotional response from me the reader. Many tears were shed in reading this and my heart hurt for Jaycee’s struggles. Religion plays a huge part in this book and the way it intertwines with Jaycee’s life was amazing. It never comes off as a push on religion but a crucial aspect of the main character and her story while at the same time touching anyone with strong belief such as Jaycee’
Jun 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Before I Saw You is quite an emotional read for me. Jaycee Givens has been through so much throughout their lifetime. She experiences more as a child than anyone should ever have to their entire lifetime. I enjoyed watching her grow in the book. She has to learn how to love, forgive, and trust again. Then ending was so heart wrenching but yet encouraging.
I give Before I Saw You 4 1/2 stars. Such a powerful and inspiring story of faith and hope.
I received this book from the publisher. This revi
May 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Very well written story of those without the finer things in life. However they love deeply and they hurt deeply as well. I loved the strength of the characters in this novel. I loved their faith in the midst of their storms. So worth the read. This writer, Amy K. Sorrells is a keeper!
Becca-Rae Weidel
WARNING: DO NOT ATTEMPT TO READ WITHOUT KLEENEX! This book had my crying before I'd even hit page 50, and had me shedding crocodile tears at the end. This was one emotional roller-coaster of a ride. In many ways this was not an easy read--but was a necessary one. My husband (along with several of his siblings) are adopted children, so this story really hit close to home. I really don't want to give away too much in the story-line for this because it was all so powerful and each piece was perfect ...more
Oct 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful heart wrenching book. You will need tissues. I have read all of this author's books and have loved them all but this one is my favorite. A story of grace and fortitude and courage and selfless love. I highly recommend it and anything else Amy Sorrells has written. ...more
Jul 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: empty-shelf-2018
This book is a powerful, emotional roller coaster of a book. I have no experience or knowledge of street drug abuse other than what I've seen on the news so this book was a huge eye opener. I got immersed in the story immediately and I became invested in Jaycee, Sudie, and Gabe's story.

The story is timely with real characters who have lost hope, need grace, and feel lost. Readers who have no first hand knowledge of street drug addiction will be pulled into the story and on some level be able to
Sep 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaways, adoption
Received a Kindle copy from Goodreads, finally got a chance to read it. This is my first book by this author. As an adoptee, I wasn't sure how I'd take the adoption aspect and the journey Jaycee took. I think that it was presented very well, and could tell the author had done her research on birth mothers. I enjoyed this whole story and felt that the scripture and faith tie in was just right, not overly Christian based. Overall, a great story and lots of emotions, did not expect to be hit with t ...more
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a heart wrenching story and yet so full of hope. It resonated with me since it takes place in southern Indiana and I live in Kentucky. I see the effects of meth and heroin in my small town, the death of the ash trees, and the heartbreak of a pregnancy that’s not anticipated. Ms. Sorrells writes beautifully and poignantly with characters so real they could be sitting next to me. I highly recommend this book.
Josephine Sorrell
I am participating in a reading challenge through my local public library. One of the 52 challenges was to read a book where the author has the same first or last name as you. I chose Amy Sorrells. No final S in my last name but close enough.
This book is just so beautiful. I am thrilled to know of this amazing author.

Amy Sorrells tells the faith-filled saga of a pregnant young mother surrounded by opioid addiction who finds hope in the goodness around her. Jaycee Givens is no stranger to heart
Jerrye Bell
Jul 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Before I Saw You by Amy K. Sorrells

Published by Tyndale House Publishers June 05, 2018

Genre: Drama, Christian

Pages: 400

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars


Publisher’s Description

Folks are dying fast as the ash trees in the southern Indiana town ravaged by the heroin epidemic, where Jaycee Givens lives with nothing more than a thread of hope and a quirky neighbor, Sudie, who rescues injured wildlife. After a tragedy l
Aug 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
"It's the folks who thought the Lord shouldn't love them that he made a point to love on the most."

"I just . . . I didn't know I could love - and at the same time be afraid of - someone so much who I've never even met."

Jaycee Givens is afraid, in fact she has been afraid for years now, following the kind of heartache and tragedy that no child, turned young woman, should have to bear. As if life hasn't her handed her enough grief, she now bears the responsibility for another, someone tiny and un
Jul 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is my third book by Amy K. Sorrels and it was everything I was expecting it to be and more. The characters in this book were well-drawn, and I'll admit I wish I could continue to fictionally live in Riverton, Indiana to find out what will happen in the future with Jaycee and Gabe, though the author does hint at it. This book doesn't have the HEA that I was hoping for. But it took a lot of guts to make the decision that Jaycee makes in the end, and that's why I give this book five stars. It ...more
Patrice Doten
Wow! I don't even know where to begin. This book has ALL the things! It's beautifully written, both characters and story are distinct and so authentic I had to keep reminding myself (as I blubbered away), "they're not real - this is a story." I'm adopted, and I know my birth parents (both of them), and I've lost 2 babies within the first 6 months of their lives. I also have nieces whose mom (my sister-in-law) went to prison for drugs when they were young. This book spoke to me in ways no other b ...more
Mary Jackson _TheMaryReader
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
Do you like a well written emotional read? If you said YES, then this is your book. I was pulled in and before I knew it I had read the whole book in one sitting.
Great storyline and characters. Worthy of an afternoon sitting under a huge shade tree relaxing and reading.
Pick up this 4 star emotional read.
The Mary Reader received this book from the publisher. A favorable review was not required and all reviews expressed are our own.
Mar 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Oh My! This book is incredible! It's a story of love, forgiveness, pain, identity, adoption, and the opioid crisis. I could not put this book down. I forced myself to sleep and finish the next day. It is amazingly powerful and I am so grateful I had the chance to read it! I will warn you though, I basically sobbed through the last chapter or two. It's a moving story and well worth your time! ...more
Jul 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Gripping, heart wrenching, emotional, angry, happy, breathless...
Those were just a few descriptions of how you will feel when reading this book. Honestly this book took me on an emotional roller coaster.
This book came in the perfect year because things like drugs, abuse, poverty, etc., that is all here and now. Right in our day and age. I think readers will definitely be able to appreciate that this book describes very real life in some areas!
Drugs are a very real epidemic in the world today.
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A long time believer in the power of story to change lives, Amy got her start in journalism and medical writing. Her work has been featured in a wide array of publications including newspapers and medical journals. Her novels have been shortlisted for the 2014 Inspy awards, semi-finalists for the ACFW Genesis awards, and a winner of the 2011 Women of Faith writing contest.

An Indianapolis native an

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“There’s always letting go to do here on earth, Jaycee. But the Lord, he never lets go. And because of him, we never have to either.” 2 likes
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