Monday, November 27, 2006

Comfort & Joy - Kristin Hannah

Oh, Lovelies! Do I have a book for you! My friend Michele sent me this book last week, and finally last night I had the time to curl up in my Breast Cancer print blanket all by myself and read. For three hours I sat in that chair, curled up in a blanket made with love and lost myself in this wonderful book. This was exactly what I was needing. That and the four day week-end I got to spend with my husband and children. The outside of our house is now decorated with care, and the tree is up and beautiful in our front room. Bear and Miss Beautiful have Christmas Wish Lists ready to present to Santa at the mall this week-end, and I have all of my shopping yet to do. Life is good. I just love this time of year, but I'd be lying if I didn't say I was already counting down days to when it's over. Anyway, you came here to read a review, so without further ado...

Comfort & Joy by Kristin Hannah
Newly divorced, Joy Candellaro decides to break from her ordinary life and embark on a holiday adventure. A miraculous twist of fate lands her in the charming Northwest town of Rain Valley, where she meets Daniel O'Shea and his young son, Bobby. Thrown together by chance, these three souls will be touched by the true spirit of Christmas and discover what it means to be a family.

In this modern-day fairy tale of a woman caught between two lives, New York Times bestselling author Kristin Hannah delivers a holiday gift to treasure for years to come.

I cannot comment too much on this BCC. The book is a mere 240 pages, but within those pages, so very much happens. For the most part, this BCC does its job well.

It's Christmastime, but for high school librarian Joy, there are no feelings of good-will. She has been divorced for the past 3 months, but separated for eight months before that. Ever since the fateful day she caught her younger sister in bed with her husband, Joy's life has been turned upside-down. Upon finding out that her ex-husband and sister were to be married and have a baby, Joy takes off and heads to the airport. Once there, she sees a flight for Hope, and gets herself a ticket. Shortly after the plane is in the air, it crashes.

Miraculously, Joy is able to walk away from the crash and that is just what she does, literally. Leaves behind the wreckage and goes in search of a new life. If only for a little while. Not long after taking off, Joy stumbles upon an old Lodge that is for sale, and gets a room. The lodge is owned by Daniel and his eight-year-old son Bobby. Daniel and Bobby know loss as well. A few months before Joy arrives in their lives, they lost Maggie, Daniels ex-wife, and Bobby's very much loved mother.

It is in trying to help father and son find a way to live together and love one another again, that Joy finds herself. Not only does Joy find the truth in her feelings for her sister, but she finds herself seeing in Bobby and Daniel a family she never dreamed possible.

Written in First Person, Joy's story is a tale that will not easily be forgotten. The structure of Joy's sentences, and her descriptions of events and people, portrayed such a deep hurt I never knew could be expressed in mere words.

Joy learns so very much about herself in this book and in doing so, she showed me some inner truths as well. "'s safe to say I'm a dreamer not a doer." Such simple words really, but boy did they strike a cord with me. The url for my person blog is dreamerbecomesdoer. I made it such because that was exactly how I felt. I was finally going to DO something that would kick-start me to writing. I have written more since starting that blog, but I'm still more of a dreamer than a doer. But after reading Joy's story, I realized that it was time for me to get on with it as well.

The book is divided into two parts with quotes and the start of each one. The quote for Part One was - " It's a dangerous business...going out of your door. You step into the Road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to," J.R.R. Tolkien and then Part Two starts with, "You see things and you say, 'Why?' But I dream things that never were And say, 'Why not?'" George Bernard Shaw. I loved both of these quotes, and more than anything they sum up the pages that follow.

If you want to believe in magic again. In falling in love. In family. In hope. In the incredible ability of the heart to mend. You need to read this book. Hannah delivers such a heart-warming tale, that I will be re-reading this book several times this season, and several more throughout the year. I also can't wait to get some of Hannah's backlist and her latest book
Magic Hour .

If I had any complaints with C&J it would be that it ended far too soon. I wanted to know more about what happens with Joy, Daniel, and Bobby. I can only hope Hannah revisits them some day, if only a mention in another book.

Thank You, Michele, this was exactly what I needed!

Take Care


dee said...

This is exactly the purpose of a review - to make me want to go out and buy the book. And so since you did your job so well, I'm going to pick it up tonight. I need more fodder after finsihing NaNo, and this one seems right up my alley after the one I read this morning.

dee said...

So I went out and bought the book last night. And I finished reading it this morning.
All I'm saying is...WOW.
Yeah, I really enjoyed it. Char did such a beautiful job in her review that I won't even try to add to it. It was beautifully written, and I thoroughly loved it!