"All the best stories in the world are but one story in reality -- the story of escape. It is the only thing which interests us all and at all times, how to escape."
--Author Christopher Benson



Saturday, August 20, 2011

Chasing Lilacs by Carla Stewart Review & Giveaway

I found out about this book in my blog travels so it is perfect for the 3 R's Challenge.  I want to Recognize Maureen Mullis of Plotting It Out for reviewing this book back in July. Thank you also to FaithWords for granting my review book request. I read it almost as soon as it arrived!! 

Hachette Book Group
Set in 1958, in Graham Camp, Texas, a small "town" set up for the workers of the local petroleum company.  Life should be good but young Sammie Tucker doesn't understand her mother's "nerve problems" or why her mother rarely gets out of bed or lives in her housecoat. When her mother is sent away  for shock treatments this twelve year old life changes forever.  

She doesn't know who she can trust, who she can talk to or how to deal with all the feelings she is having.  Her best friend "knows" and has an opinion on everything.  A new boy moves to town from California but has a lot of his own baggage.  The woman next door is always there for Sammie with a hug and there is an older man that is very understanding but he has some secrets of his own.  One of Sammie's teachers tries to get her to open up but Sammie doesn't know much she can really share. She does know that her aunt is up to no good and Sammie doesn't not trust her at all. 

She questions her mother's love and while dealing with all the normal adolescent growing issues she has to face some very adult things that no child should have to deal with.

When I first started reading this book I thought it was a young adult coming-of age story.  Well before the end of the first chapter I knew I was wrong about that.  This is a story with a real adult issue, depression, seen through the eyes of a wonderful twelve year old.   Back in the 50's it was called "nerve problems" and shock treatments with horrendous side effects were the treatment.

Carla Stewart has written a heart breaking and heart warming novel that will stick with you long past the final word.  It is so well written you feel invested in Sammie's life immediately and find yourself wishing you could climb into the pages and help her through the rocky journey she is taking.

This is marketed as Christian Fiction but it has a very subtle Christian references so if that type of fiction is not your genre don't let it keep you from reading this wonderful story. Take some time to stop and smell the lilacs.

This is definitely an author to watch, she has a voice that tells tough stories with passion. I can't wait to read her next novel Broken Wings.  Find out more at Carla's web page.

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Faith Words, Hachette Book Group, in exchange for an honest review.  The opinions stated are entirely my own.  I am stating this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR part 255. "Guides Concerning Use of Endorsement and Testimonials in Advertising"  

I am so blessed that the publisher has given 
two copies of this book for giveaway!
U.S. & Canadian Residents Only
Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries 
Contest Ends at 11:59 PM CST September 1
Winners Chosen By Random. org


Gigi Ann said...

This does sound like an interesting book to read. I grew up in the 50s, so realize that depression wasn't talked about much.

Darlene said...

This sounds like a good read! Thanks for the review and giveaway!

Faith Hope Cherrytea said...

Carla is a fantastic writer that dealt beautifully with serious issues in Broken Wings, so i know this would be a winner '') thanks for offering it and to Hachette for same...

mamabunny13 said...

Chasing Lilacs sound like it's going to be a good read. Thanks for the giveaway.