Posted in Bethany House, Book reviews

“Veiled in Smoke” by Jocelyn Green ~ Book Review

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“Veiled in Smoke” by Jocelyn Green

Releases February 4th

The Windy City Sage Book One

Review copy from the author/publisher as apart of the launch team

My rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

About the Book:

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(Thank you to the author for sending the amazing prints and ash confetti!<3)

 

My Thoughts:

 
I must admit I have some conflicted feelings regarding this book. It is brilliantly written, and I definitely enjoyed the story, but there was an aspect that…well, I guess it was a trigger for me, and therefore how it ended was a bit of a wound to me.
I couldn’t deeply connect with main character Meg. Going into the story, I assumed that this story would be equally shared between the two sisters, and gravitated more towards¬†Sylvie. Though her story was more of a side story, and I struggled with some of the ways she was treated.
Before I go on to explain some of what triggered me, I do want to preface it with saying how beautifully the author writes. This novel is gorgeous, and the story told vibrant and captivating. I still consider it a good read, worth my time, and I look forward to reading the following books in this series. The history was portrayed wonderfully, and the tragedy real.
As I don’t wish to spoil the book for anyone, I will warn that you may want to wait on reading the rest of this review until you have read the book for yourself. So, with that being said….
I really liked Sylvie. I really liked the relationship that blossomed between her and Jasper. It felt like throughout the novel though, that her feelings and her personal journey were not very well respected by the main character and supporting characters. It was really all about Meg and her end happiness. I know we are to root for the main character, but I couldn’t help but feel triggered by the fact that Sylvie was so often not given a voice or validated in any of her feelings. So yes, this ended up being a trigger for me but that doesn’t mean it will be for anyone else.
I have hopes that the next book in this story will be about Sylvie. However, I confess I still feel sorrow that she couldn’t have the ending she wanted in this book.
Again, my feelings will not reflect everyone’s, and as I also said this author is an excellent writer so her books are definitely worth the read!
Quotes:
“Sylvie rarely won a argument with Meg. She didn’t even like to disagree with her, preferring all the conflict in her life to be contained within the pages of books, where it was resolved by the last chapter…”
“But if she’d learned anything during the last several years, it was that the body repaired itself far easier than the spirit.”
“What a mercy that God was not limited by that which limited her. What a grace that His power and presence remained, regardless of whether she felt close to them. She must trust Him for what she could not see. Wasn’t that the essence of faith? Her hands were bound. His were not.”
“We will thank God as soon as we can.”
*I received a copy of this book from the publishers; all thoughts expressed are entirely my own.
Posted in Bethany House, Book reviews

“Between Two Shores” by Jocelyn Green ~ Book Review

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Between Two Shores by Jocelyn Green

Historical Fiction

Review copy from the author/publisher

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

 

 

About the Book:

 

The daughter of a Mohawk mother and French father in 1759 Montreal, Catherine Duval finds it is easier to remain neutral in a world that is tearing itself apart. Content to trade with both the French and the British, Catherine is pulled into the fray against her wishes when her British ex-fiance, Samuel Crane, is taken prisoner by her father. Samuel asks her to help him escape, claiming he has information that could help end the war.

Peace appeals to Catherine, but helping the man who broke her heart does not. She delays . . . until attempts on Samuel’s life convince her he’s in mortal danger. Against her better judgment she helps him flee by river, using knowledge of the landscape to creep ever closer to freedom. Their time together rekindles feelings she thought long buried, and danger seems to hound their every mile. She’s risked becoming a traitor by choosing a side, but will the decision cost her even more than she anticipated?

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My Thoughts:

 

I was very eager going into “Between Two Shores”, as it was my first time reading a book by Jocelyn Green. The cover is beautiful, evoking a sense of what story lies within its pages.
Our heroine, Catherine Stands-Apart has faced many trials and hardships, had her heart-broken, and her trust betrayed. But she is strong – through all she has weathered, she refused to be broken, and she continued on.
This novel set during the 7 year war gave a fascinating glimpse into its history. I didn’t know much about this time period, but I was enlightened through this book and I am glad for it.
The author depicts the history with respect and grace, her writing flowing perfectly to fit.
It was a little slow at first, and I admit I had a hard time connecting until a certain even happened. Until then, I was involved but not entrenched, if that makes sense.
There was a occurance that shocked me and I felt the betrayal Catherine felt, although I feel like she moved past it pretty quickly. And maybe that is realistic for many people, but I would have liked to have seen her grapple with it a little while longer. I’m not saying to withhold forgiveness but matters of the heart aren’t always solved in a matter of hours.
Following Catherine’s journey was special, and I enjoyed it!
I really loved Catherine’s sister, Bright Star. She was rough around the edges to be sure, but her character was intriguing and full of depth. Joseph Many Feathers, their brother, was also a favorite.
This isn’t your typical light-everything-is-awesome kind of story, but it is beautiful nonetheless. There is heartache, and there are many, many trials, but the ending was perfect, and very poignant.