Tuesday, November 10, 2009

White Picket Fences by Susan Meissner (Review)

Book Summary:
Amanda Janvier’s idyllic home seems the perfect place for her niece Tally to stay while her vagabond brother is in Europe, but the white picket fence life Amanda wants to provide is a mere illusion. Amanda’s husband Neil refuses to admit their teenage son Chase, is haunted by the horrific fire he survived when he was four, and their marriage is crumbling while each looks the other way.

Tally and Chase bond as they interview two Holocaust survivors for a sociology project, and become startlingly aware that the whole family is grappling with hidden secrets, with the echoes of the past, and with the realization that ignoring tragic situations won’t make them go away.

Readers of emotional dramas that are willing to explore the lies that families tell each other for protection and comfort will love White Picket Fences. The novel is ideal for those who appreciate exploring questions like: what type of honesty do children need from their parents, or how can one move beyond a past that isn’t acknowledged or understood? Is there hope and forgiveness for the tragedies of our past and a way to abundant grace?

My Review:
Wow. White Picket Fences is one of the best books I have read all year. I read it in one morning/early afternoon. It is a moving make you think wonderfully written novel. I think this is Susan Meissner's best book yet and I have read most of them. It is a contemporary story dealing with family issues and secrets. There is a secondary plot of the Holocaust and a school project that is woven in easily with the main story. I highly recommend it and it is going on my 2009 favorites list. :)

Author Summary:

Susan Meissner cannot remember a time when she wasn’t driven to put her thoughts down on paper. Her novel The Shape of Mercy was a Publishers Weekly pick for best religious fiction of 2008 and a Christian Book Award finalist. Susan and her husband live in Southern California , where he is a pastor and a chaplain in the Air Force Reserves. They are the parents of four grown children.

Thank you WaterBrook Press, a division of Random House, for my review copy.

1 comment:

CherryBlossomMJ said...

Did you really like it better than The Shape of Mercy?

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