Friday, April 8, 2016

Love Is anthology book review

Midsize Book Publisher with mainstream and inspirational lines and a focus on Romance releases the first three novellas in the Love Is... series bundled for print in an anthology.

Prism Book Group began a series based on Scripture from I Corinthians 13:4-9, most popularly known in public as the "wedding" verses. There will be a total of 15 novellas, each featuring a component of the verses, set to mostly contemporary romance stories, with one set during the Regency era. The first of these novellas was released on February 15, 2016. The series is set to wrap in 2017, with a monthly release on the last Fridays.

Each novella is available as a stand-alone ebook for $2.99
The bundled print edition of the first three books is $14.99
My reviews follow.

Hounded by Anita Klumpers

Elise Amberson has multiple demons to battle when her unbeloved second husband Timothy is murdered. Naturally she’s the chief suspect. Timothy’s family is less than cordial, the detective assigned to the case has his own challenge which includes putting uppity Elise in her place. Then there are the unseen battles, the God who won’t stop bugging her in the form of a pastor friend from school days, and the Amberson family closet.

Cleverly formulated around the classic nineteenth century poem, Hound of Heaven, by Francis Thompson, Hounded is a delightfully-crafted novella with enough clues and miscues, romance and family secrets, and charming detail to satisfy savvy readers. Klumpers writes for lit lovers with jests and innuendo in a skillful use of language. A lot of fun that will bring a smile to readers and an occasional need to dive back in to recall a quote.

Clue Into Kindness by Gay N. Lewis

A married couple who have been poked in the eyes by the stars they’ve let swirl far too long gets an overdue lesson in treating each other better.

Alan and Georgia married for all the usual romantic reasons and soon lost touch with each other, only they’re unaware of the fact except to their quasi-friends, Jana and Ken. Ken has the patience of a saint, is secure in his relationships with people and God, and sees the good in the boorish Alan. When Jana takes a page from her husband’s notebook on life advice and works harder to be a friend to Georgia to get her to see her life in tatters, the results take an unexpected curve. Clueless Alan has little respect for anyone until his dad enters the scene and sets him straight.

Experience and twenty-twenty hindsight final reveal that kindness in love is integral in any relationship. Hopefully it’s not too late for Alan and Georgia. Clue Into Kindness is a sweet romantic story of love gone awry and the chances we take or miss to get it straight. Told in multiple viewpoints for those who enjoy a swift kick of a story.

Greener Grasses by Julie Cosgrove

Author Cosgrove’s example of Love does not envy in Prism Book Group’s Love Is... series based on I Corinthians 13:4-8 uses a family situation. Twin sisters each outwardly and secretively envy the other’s life choices and circumstances—education, husband, children, lifestyle. They’ve allowed themselves not only to drift apart, but let the chasm of their disappointments build until it’s Grand Canyon deep. It takes the death of their mother and her unusual request in her will to force them to choose whether to bridge the divide and eventually work at backfill, or remain bitter and at odds.

Told from multiple viewpoints, each side of the story reveals the misfortunes, both real and assumed, as Erin with her blue collar life and growing boys and Ellen with her higher-society frets and illusions face each other at their mother’s funeral. From there, they are forced to spend a week together with their husbands, who have managed an arm’s length relationship at best. As they reminisce, secrets come to light, and twists on old dreams and who got what when, why, and how, show them that envy stagnates the soul and existence. Even their children receive some life lessons as they spend the week together with an aunt and uncle in a different locale.

Many good lessons come from this short sweet read. How we treat others is a sure sign of our faith life; how we respond to tragedy is the mirror of our souls. Allowing another, even a dear sibling, to share our hearts and gently point us in a better way is a diamond blessing. 
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