Review of “The Edge of Belonging” by Amanda Cox

“The Edge of Belonging” is Amanda Cox’s debut novel.  This is a split-time novel which means you get to go along with the main characters in the present as well as the past.  You get to learn about the main character, Ivy Rose, both as a child and as an adult.  You also will encounter some other remarkable people that are her adopted family.  Ivy’s life did not start out like you would expect a baby’s life to start which is in a hospital with her birth mother.  Nor is her adoption into her new family the way you would expect either.  However, the one thing you would expect and hope would be true with any adoption of a baby is the love of family.  Ivy does find that love among several people.  Amanda Cox does an amazing job of bringing her characters and their world to life so that you feel as though you are right there with them.  As she switches between past and present, she makes it easy to follow so that you are not confused or wondering which time period you are currently reading.  If you are looking for a great book about love, forgiveness, and adoption, then I would definitely recommend this book.  Not once was I bored with this story and at times I found it hard to put down in order to do things I needed to get done.  I have to say that if this book is an example of how well written all of Amanda Cox’s future books will be then I would love to read all of them.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy in order to give an honest review.

Review of “The Pages of Her Life” by James L. Rubart

I have read almost all of James L. Rubart’s books with my favorite probably being the first one I ever read by him called “Rooms”. In fact, I was surprised (since it’s been awhile since I read Rooms) when I recognized the name, Micah Taylor, and background story of one of the minor characters in this book as the main character from “Rooms”. As you can tell from my previous statements, I highly recommend this book. In “The Pages of Her Life”, you meet Allison who is at her wits end with her personal and professional life. She is getting fed up with her partner who was her best friend until they tried going into business together. She is divorced and living alone until things with her mom go south which causes her mom to have to move in. Then all of a sudden she ends up with this mysterious journal. James L. Rubart does an excellent job of creating not only his fictional characters but also the world they live. You definitely feel the emotions as the characters are feeling them. Also one of the parts about his books I’ve always loved is the lesson you can get from the stories. No matter where you are in life you can find something about his books to which you can relate. If you have never read his books before, then I recommend you start today or whenever you finish the book you are currently reading. You can start with any of his books. However, he does have a series that you should read in order and I would definitely read “Rooms” before this one so that Micah Taylor’s appearance in this one will make more sense.

Review of “The Hope of Azure Springs” by Rachel Fordham

This is the second book I have read by Rachel Fordham. I have also read “Yours Truly, Thomas” which you are actually supposed to read after this one but it seems that it wasn’t a huge deal that I read them in backwards order. As with “Yours Truly, Thomas”, I was drawn into this book from the very beginning. Rachel does a great job of bringing out the personality of her characters. In this book, the main characters are Em and Caleb (who also show up in the next book as secondary characters). Em originally shows up in town in bad shape. She had been shot and left for dead before arriving in Azure Springs. Also she is too thin and unfortunately is in need of a bath which is why the daughter of the people who nicely take her in does not say very nice things about her. The whole situation reminds me that you should not always judge somebody by their outward appearance especially when you do not know their story. Thankfully Caleb who is the sheriff of Azure Springs realizes that despite her appearance, Em seems to be a nice girl who needs help. Maybe he sees this because it is his job to find out who shot Em or maybe it is because he is a nice guy but I am just glad he looks past her appearance and treats her well. The character of Em shows what it means to be resilient in the face of life’s challenges.  And Caleb shows what it truly means to love and care for someone. If you get this book, then you won’t regret it.