*This post has been updated with my new format on February 9th, 2016, thanks to the Ultimate Book Blogger Plugin.*
When I was preparing the Coming Soon from the Pen post featuring historical Irish-fiction author Cindy Thomson, I was planning to link back to my review of Grace's Pictures, An Ellis Island Novel #1 that I read in July 2013 and loved beginning to end. I was surprised to discover while that review is prominently on my Goodreads shelf it seems to have either disappeared or never quite made it to my blog. But then, that was a drastic summer (surgery and all). Now I'm delighted to post that review as well as the brand new interview with Cindy to entice you to the entire series!
Grace is a different character from what I usually read and I did not take to her at first. However, our hero had me as a fan from before Grace was even sure what she thought of him. Grace's story starts in Ireland, continues on a ship and then in New York from about three or four different settings if you include Owen's locations. December 1900 America - Irish lass. While reading, I was taking blip notes as I bookmarked and said, Interesting start. "I already like Owen, definitely hero worthy so far. :) Grace is timid, but growing on me. I'm not sure what I think about Grace, but then I have no way to really relate to her experiences and fear. Owen, however, is seemingly a dream right off the bat. I have no clue how they might end up together, which I assume is the end direction. I'm definitely reading this book for Owen but I have hope for Grace..." By the end of the story, I'm definitely fond of Grace as she grew as a person and a character. While this is not seemingly the normal historical fiction I read it was enchanting throughout and kept me entertained and turning pages.
At the end, I did not expect certain things with her step-father and mother as it has been painted a different way, but I think that made the growth and knowledge of the characters past and presents all the more. The mixture of gang issue with the police force of the time was really neat to read as I'm sure I haven't seen it anywhere else before. The cover calls this An Ellis Island Novel, so I'm intrigued to see if Cindy will come out with more I'm delighted to be reading the sequel and second novel of Irish Immigrants through Ellis Island in Annie's Stories right now! I definitely wouldn't mind reading them even more stories if they were to come to publication. After all, this got a five star from me, and that's a hard score to reach. :)
I love the writing of Julie Lessman and from reading all the stories about Marcy and Patrick's children in the series Daughters of Boston followed byI love the writing of Julie Lessman and from reading all the stories about Marcy and Patrick's children in the series Daughters of Boston followed by Winds of Change coming back to a prequel was an exciting bit for me. It's the kind of story where you know how it ends, but you just have to know how in the world that can happen because it seems nearly impossible. Through the stories of all the children's romantic lives you get bits and pieces of an amazing romance between Patrick and Marcy and being able to see how it developed in the first place is enchanting and set at Christmastime too! While I came into this thinking it to be a novella, it is a bit longer read than other novellas, but still it's short for Julie. But then as a lover of Julie's fiction, there can never be a story long enough. I cannot believe this series has come to an end!
Readers who have read any of Julie's books can come to this one and will love it. New readers, who have not yet read any of the story of the lives of the O'Connor family and their triune romances can come to this one and will love it I'm sure and it will spark a desire to see what happens in all their individual and family lives.
Take two rogues that seem almost too far gone to be forgiven, a girl nearly woman who is devote in her faith and praying to find the love of her life in a Godly-mate. Bring in her best friend and give her romance too in perfectly appropriate friendships as well. Add lots of redemption and a new heart for Christ. Tie it all together with a Christmas pageant including some characters with rough family lives and handicaps and you have a delightful read.
*Thanks to Julie and Nancy Berland PR for providing an eBook for review.*
note to self... add shelf Ireland, Archaeology, Mummies, History
What a delight I found in reading this unexpected book today. While I would not have tnote to self... add shelf Ireland, Archaeology, Mummies, History
What a delight I found in reading this unexpected book today. While I would not have thought of such a way to introduce mummies to a young child, this is an elegant way. A reader is given not only a valuable lesson on archaeology in real life, but also to vocabulary and some culture of an Irish land and bog.
I could easily see this one come of the shelf for interest as well as extra story reinforcement in various classes. This one definitely has value in a school shelf.
Early in life, before one's vocabulary is highly defined pictures and images are the entry way to learning and the soul. There are fun and fluffy things in life, but there are also hard things that can be difficult for a child to understand. Being able to introduce my girls to the idea of girl's past life long gone in such a beautiful way filled with images full of emotion and feelings is precious to me. I'm very glad that I found this one and it is a keeper and one to spread the word about. I'm quite curious what else I might find in a similar sense from these two picture-book author/artist team.
Typed on NookColor. Thanks to HMH for providing a copy for review.