Father's House--Book Review
A little about the book . . .
"My Father's House is at once a sweet romance and a page-turning thriller." --Ann Tatlock, award-winning novelist. Growing up, life is idyllic for Lily Rose Cates due to one constant – her father’s love. But in her sixteenth summer, all that changes without warning. There begins Lily’s struggle to find herself and the life she’s lost. . . . Marriage promises fulfillment, but her happily-ever-after barely survives the honeymoon. Her husband’s sophisticated façade hides a brooding man with even darker secrets. When all illusions shatter, Lily must make hard choices – abandon her husband or risk losing much more than her marriage. She flees their home in Detroit and sets out on a fearful journey to a house in Georgia that her husband knows nothing about. This is one woman’s compelling tale of love and survival as she finds her way back home to who she’s meant to be . . . in her father’s house. "...had it not been for Annie Ruth, I would have ended up right there rocking on the front porch beside Mama. Annie Ruth took care of me. She and Mr. John drove up in his dusty pickup truck every morning at six o'clock. She got out and came in, bringing her life and soul into the house...We were her cherished charges, and I was like her own." --My Father's House
STORY BEHIND MY FATHER’S HOUSE
Tell us a bit about the story behind your latest novel. Where did you find inspiration?
I wanted to write a story about a young woman who in spite of devastating hardships, disappointments, personal loss and mistakes, ultimately finds happiness after reconnecting with family and faith. I wanted the reader to take the journey with her, go with her through some of the hardships, but I didn’t want the painful things to be the focus of her triumphant story. Lily Rose has an indomitable spirit and warm heart that is endearing to readers. Her father believed that she would be alright; the reader wants to know she will be too. With my roots firmly planted in Georgia, the setting had to play a critical part in the story. So, I modeled my fictional town after so many small Southern towns and I set in some of my love of nature and gardening. Being a Southerner, I had definite ideas about elements I needed for this story to come alive. Besides fascinating characters and a distinctive setting, there had to be a little crazy, eccentric, and some downright meanness, mixed with suspense, romance, and lots of southern charm.
What was the hardest part about writing your novel: Getting started? Keeping it going? Finding the perfect ending?
The perfect ending was easy, and I never ran out of things to write. But there was a part of the story that was hard to write – the marriage relationship. I didn’t want their disappointing marriage to overwhelm the story.
What trait do you love most about your main character?
My main character is warm-hearted with an indomitable spirit. I love that about her.
When readers get to the last page, what do you hope they take away from the story?
In spite of devastating hardships, disappointments, and mistakes, God has a good future in mind for each of us. I want my readers to feel the joy and hope expressed by Lily Rose.
What I thought . . .
After first few chapters I really got into the story. I was for me a little confusing at first going from present to the past. And a little slow going reading through the backstory of college years and romance leading to the main story line.
The main story line of the book is about Lily Rose and her attempts to turn her life around after going through and emotionally and abusive marriage. Miss Chandler did an excellent job of bringing a hard subject to life without being graphic or overly violent. However this is a story for a mature reader. Although it is not graphic the topic is for adults.
It truly is a book of facing ones circumstances and struggling through to survive and thrive.
There is a little romance too. And a happy ending.
I enjoyed reading My Father's House and gladly give it my 5 star rating.
I received a complimentary copy from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review.
This review is posted on Amazon, CBC, Barnes and Noble and Good Reads.
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