Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Sister Dear by Laura McNeill

I was excited to be receiving this new novel by an author I had not yet been acquainted. I always love being introduced to new authors.

This novel is published by Thomas Nelson. I'm not quite sure why one would find this novel in the Christian section of the closest book store. The main character speaks of God, but it never goes deeper than that. One could question what god she is speaking about.

This novel is fast paced. One in which each chapter is devoted to a character. Allie, Emma, Caroline, and Sheriff Gaines. I love the premise of the story. Allie is falsely accused of a crime and placed in prison. Emma her sister, raises her daughter, Caroline. Sheriff Gaines enters the story and we see bits of pieces of his life unfold. The story flows easily until the last few chapters. Then it speeds up and I felt like each chapter kind of just fell off the page with no more detail of the circumstances the characters were facing. With that being said, I never really connected to the characters because it was so fast paced. I feel the story just stayed on the surface without going deep. Maybe that's where my connection was lost.

Within these pages we do get to see a character, Allie, never give up. We see her strength continually grow as she seeks to find the truth. As she uncovers the truth we see her freedom become real and there is where she is able to find true peace now. I enjoyed the daughter's journey. Caroline is a struggling teenager, trying desperately to fit in and not be found out. She is fearful when her mom is released her world as she knows it will come crashing down. Emma is that girl who lives behind the facade that all is okay. She hides so much inside and doesn't want to reveal any depth of herself. She just wants to be loved and accepted. She has a distorted view that Allie is her parents favorite child. Sheriff Gaines is a more complicated character. I just feel like there needed to be more pages for these characters to develop fully.

My three star review isn't because of poor writing or a story that isn't worthy. This writer is very talented. I expected to see faith throughout these pages since it is published by Thomas Nelson. If faith were weaved into story and our Jesus was given credit for the main characters strength that would have left me with a more meaningful novel.

You may pick up this novel and just love it. I hope you do!! We all experience something different while reading a novel. I think I was just hoping for more.

This novel was a gift from Thomas Nelson for sharing my review with you.

Laura McNeill is a writer, mom, travel enthusiast, and a coffee drinker. In her former life, she was a television news anchor for CBS News affiliates in New York and Alabama. Laura holds a master's degree in Journalism from The Ohio State University and is completing a PhD in Instructional Leadership at the University of Alabama. When she's not writing and doing homework, she enjoys running, yoga, and spending time at the beach. She lives in North Alabama with her family.

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