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No Good Asking

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  655 ratings  ·  131 reviews
A profoundly moving exploration of our capacity to heal one another.

Ellie and Eric Nyland have moved their two sons back to Eric's childhood farmhouse, hoping for a fresh start. But there’s no denying it, their family is falling apart, each one of them isolated by private sorrows, stresses, and missed signals. With every passing day, Ellie’s hopes are buried deeper in the
Paperback, 300 pages
Published October 2nd 2018 by ECW Press
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Average rating 3.97  · 
Rating details
 ·  655 ratings  ·  131 reviews

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Emily Ferko
Mar 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It's a literary hallmark movie. Without the cliches or the hokey. ...more
Jun 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, canadian
This isn't a story I'd necessarily pick up, but it had me from page one. Fran Kimmel is an extraordinary observer of the human condition, and this story, with its real, flawed characters reminded me of the power of human kindness. No Good Asking combines careful, compelling writing with propulsive human drama that had me worrying about the characters when I was no longer reading. ...more
Nov 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Loved this book! The narrative moves seamlessly from the mind of one character to another as the story unfolds. I love the deceptive apparent simplicity. So much is packed in. The characters are vivid and wholly believable - even the dog!
Reading Fool
Aug 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: giveaways, 2018
I received an Advance Reader's Copy of this book.

This book greatly moved me and I didn't want it to end. This story takes place in the span of a week, from December 20 to 26. Eric Nyland is a retired RCMP officer, who comes upon young Hannah during a bitterly cold day, walking by herself. Hannah lives in the house across the road. Eric soon finds out that Hannah is being raised in terrible conditions, and the Nylands decide to take in Hannah for a few days until after Christmas, when the social
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Oh this book. Oh my heart.

Coming from a place where I know the wants for children and a family- this story his every single heart string I had. This imperfect family gave when they thought they had nothing left to give. I just can't get enough of this story. Like someone else said in their review- It is like a hallmark movie, minus the terrible love story line. Do yourself a favor and pick this book up!!
Luanne Ollivier
Dec 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fran Kimmel's latest novel, No Good Asking, is set during the week leading up to Christmas Day. The time frame - and the message - were perfect for December reading.

Retired RCMP Sergeant Eric Nyland and his family have moved back to his childhood home at his wife Ellie's instigation. This way, they can look after Walter - Eric's father who has dementia. And she feels it's a better place for their autistic son Sammy. Teenaged Daniel is not so sure about the move. But things have not gone as Ellie
C.J. Carmichael
I loved this book for many reasons: the setting, the characters, the perfect ending. It would make a great pick for book club.
Jul 08, 2018 rated it it was ok
I received a DIGITAL Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
From the publisher ---
A profoundly moving exploration of our capacity to heal one another.
Ellie and Eric Nyland have moved with their two sons back to Eric’s childhood farmhouse, hoping for a fresh start. But there’s no denying it, their family is falling apart, each one of them isolated by private sorrows, stresses, and missed signals. With every passing day, Ellie’s hopes are buried deeper
Maeve Stoltz
Jun 23, 2018 rated it it was ok
This is a light, feel-good book that would make a good pre-holiday read. It's essentially a lifetime movie in book form.
The hook in the beginning is strong. I was immediately curious about why a young girl would be out in subzero weather alone, and how her story would unfold. The girl, Hannah, is depicted well as a child suffering from home abuse and grief.
However, that's where my praise ends. I really wanted to love this book, but it didn't give me enough to sink my teeth into. After the initi
Jun 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: every adult
I know a few reviews have said this book is like a Hallmark movie, but I disagree. Yes, it has a somewhat happy ending, but there is nothing at all Hallmark-like in the rest of this book. It's real, it's raw, and it's very difficult to read at times. The young girl in the story witnessed and lived through some truly awful things at a very vulnerable stage of her life. The strained relationships within her "host" family were so true to life that I sometimes felt uncomfortable reading. Their perso ...more
Morgan Schulman
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: reader-s-copy
I received an advanced reader's copy in exchange for an honest review

This book is literally a Lifetime movie in novel form. It is also the rare women's fiction novel in which the male characters are far more sympathetic than the female. The female protagonist does not what to help the abused orphan for no real reason, until she suddenly does, for no real reason. We don't get any backstory that would help us understand the characters' motivations for their selfish and bad choices. It was a relief
Oct 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic story of the effect a homeless 11 year old girl makes on a family dealing with flaws and personal issues during 6 days in the Christmas season! I love that it's written by a Canadian author. The characters are wonderfully described--even Thorn, the dog. This is a book I'd recommend for others to read. ...more
Mollie Reeves
For a more in-depth review of No Good Asking, check out my blog: https://thenextpage950344705.wordpres...

Ellie and Eric Nyland have two children and recently moved them back to Eric’s childhood farmhouse in hopes of embarking on a life of new beginnings. The Nyland family has had their fair share of struggles, leaving everyone in the family stressed, broken, and craving a fresh new start. It’s immediately evident that Ellie and Eric’s marriage has grown stagnant and their relationship issues hav
J Sallows
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is an easy summer read. I was drawn in right from the first few pages, wondering why this young girl was walking in a snowstorm. It didn't take long to learn about the characters in the Nyland family and their situation and problems. I think the author's premise of kindness helping others heal is sound. I would have liked more details about the back story of Ellie and Eric, but this did not necessarily take away from the story line. I read this book in two sessions and was always drawn in t ...more
May 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book had me hooked from the first page. As a teacher, as the aunt of a child with autism, as an animal lover, and as a woman who experienced a troubled marriage (we even moved back to my husband's childhood home which held more bad memories for him than I realized), I related to this book in so many ways. I loved the characters, the setting, the writing. And it was a great story. We could all use a Hallmark movie once in a while. ...more
Apr 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Loved the character development in this story. The ending came suddenly, mainly because I was on my kobo and thought I had ten pages left but what actually happened was there was a preview for another book at the I was a bit unprepared for it to end but overall really enjoyed this read recommended to me by #spivey’s bookclub!
Aug 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
Fran Kimmel's book is a seemingly quiet story. That's until you peel back the layers and look below the surface. One night, an ex RCMP sergeant named Eric picks up his neighbour, Hannah. Hannah is experiencing difficulty with her guardian. Eric brings her home to spend Christmas with his wife and two sons until a foster family can be found.

Kimmel excels at capturing the details and the small moments, as well as the nuances of her characters. As the story unfolds, the reader learns more about th
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019, canada
I enjoyed this book and found myself really caring for the characters—in spite of the overall themes in the book: child neglect / abuse, Autism (I think), old-age dementia, and family dysfunction. It was still good and not too harrowing!
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this book from beginning to end. Fran Kimmel has done an excellent job of exploring the nooks and crannies of family life while keeping this reader anxious to get back to find out what would happen next. Apparently, also available as an audio book.
Advising Mama
Sep 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2020
Need the equivalent of a Hallmark movie in a book? This one's for you! ...more
Jun 22, 2018 rated it liked it
Thank you Netgalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest and unbiased opinion.

For whatever reason, the cover of this book stood out to me. Normally it's not something I would read since it sounds like a Hallmark/Lifetime Movie of the Week waiting to happen and I know how those can be.

I was somewhat surprised at a few things
1. Eric was orignally must more sympathetic than Ellie. Perhaps it has to do with him finding Hannah and discovering what went on.

2. Ellie's sudden desire to keep the girl
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
I liked this story of a family struggling to understand each other, suddenly called upon to care for another, even more broken, soul. I loved that it was the character with the most reasons to be bitter, angry and withdrawn, who was open, caring and willing to love. I was engaged with all of the characters and I liked that the author told the story in different parts, from each character's perspective. Doing so allowed the reader to understand their motives better. The dynamics of Eric's and Ell ...more
Anne Logan
Oct 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Full disclosure: Fran Kimmel is a good friend of mine. Luckily, I know she also writes amazing books too, so I was more than delighted to review her latest book No Good Asking. Her first novel The Shore Girl is sort of a cult classic in these parts, I’ve come across many people who list it as one of their favourite books of all time, and although I haven’t read it yet, I hope to when I get my TBR under control.

This is a book best read in the winter. It takes place over a snowy week between Chris
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2019, audio
I wasn't particularly impressed with this book. It all seemed to wrap up in this neat little bow, which I think is incredibly far-fetched. I am not sure what the laws are in Canada, where this book is set, but in the US, you can't just take in a foster child without taking part in a foster home study, interviews, background check, and classes. Also, the back story was super weak. Supposedly there was bad blood between Eric and Nigel, but it was barely delved into, and though Eric's marriage was ...more
Nov 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Let me wipe the tears off my fingertips so I can type this review. This is one of the most moving stories I’ve ever read. I read a lot. A story of a young girl who is wise beyond her years. She is one of the children who could easily fall between the cracks and become engulfed by the system of foster care. She is a catalyst. One who metamorphosizes those lucky enough to hear her sing. Fran kimmel has written a beautiful story of family, the meaning of Christmas, redemption, and faith. It would m ...more
Apr 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book cracked my heart open. While some reviewers criticize it as a Hallmark story, Kimmel’s writing is strong and I found characters sympathetic and believable in their quiet pain.
Nov 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Heart-felt and heart-warming, a lovely read by a very talented Alberta author.
Jun 03, 2018 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Prairie Fire  Review of Books
Apr 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Originally reviewed by Mary Barnes for Prairie Fire's Book Reviews Program.

Hannah Finch is eleven years old. Almost twelve. She is a troubled girl, abused and alone. Her mother is dead. One week before Christmas, she leaves the place she calls home and steps out into a winter storm.

Eric Nyland, a retired RCMP officer, on his way to pick up a Christmas tree for his family, stops to help Hannah, realizing what the girl doesn’t is that she could perish in such weather.

In the car, Eri
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