Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.


Sunday, January 24, 2010

Thicker than Blood by C.J. Darlington (Book Review)

Title: Thicker than Blood
Author: C.J. Darlington

Publisher: Tyndale Fiction

My synopsis: Christy Williams had left her family when she was just 18. Her family consisted of her 15 year old sister May and her Aunt Edna. Her parents were killed in an alcohol-related car accident coming home for her 18th birthday. For 15 years she tries to live her life, not liking that she has become an alcoholic like her parents, and not wanting her sister May to find out and be disappointed in her. For this reason, even though she lives just a couple of hours away, she does not let May know where she is.

For the last 4 years Christy has worked in a used bookstore at a job that she really loves. She has always had a kinship with books, not just reading them, but learning and enjoying their history. Hunter, her manager, has been taking her on buying trips and for the first time is letting her do the bidding. She is amazed that he trusts her enough for this important task. Unfortunately, her euphoria is short-lived.

Vince, also an employee of the book store and Christy's ex-boyfriend refuses to let her go. He knows about her drinking problem and also about some of the underhanded things she did for a rival bookstore when she first started working for Hunter. He is not against using all of that against her to try to win her back, even if it means getting her fired. When Christy's apartment is burned she hits rock bottom. With no job and no where to live, she heads for home and her sister May.

May has been co-owner of a cattle ranch for a few years. The last couple have been tough and her and her partner have missed some payments. The bank has called in the entire loan amount now and if they can't come up with the money they will lose their ranch. May cannot think of anything worse. For as long as she can remember she has wanted to live on and run a ranch. Normally she would turn to her Aunt Edna for words of wisdom, but her aunt has just passed away. She is trusting in God that he knows what is going to happen and that he has some plan in mind.

My thoughts: I really enjoyed reading this book. You know how some books just feel good in your hands - this was one of those books. It wasn't too heavy and the pages were smooth. Sometimes when reading a paperback I feel like I am breaking the spine to get the book open far enough to be able to read it. Does anyone else know what I am talking about?

Anyway, almost instantly I felt bonded with Christy. Not that I am an alcoholic, or that my parents were, or that I am estranged from my family, but just that I think we have all been on that hard road and felt like things were spirally out of our control - and that we just wanted to be around family, no matter how long it has been. I was cheering for her to really achieve something with her job and was booing Vince as soon as he came into the picture.

This book presents accepting Christ in a very down to earth way - and makes it relatable to all readers, no matter their walks of life or current faith. I did not feel it was preachy in any way, it just was there, take it or leave it and showed that sometimes (I would say most times) accepting Christ is not just a flip of a light switch. It isn't like you go to church one day and say - Yeah - this is what I need - OK - sign me up! It is more of a process of God working on softening your heart until you are ready to admit that you need Him. When you do, He will be there.

~I was provided this book for review by Title Trakk Blog Tours.~

About the Author:
C. J. began writing the story that would become Thicker than Blood (her first novel) when she was a fifteen-year-old homeschool student. She has been in the antiquarian bookselling business for over a decade, scouting for stores similar to the one described in the novel before cofounding her own online bookstore. Thicker than Blood was the winner of the 2008 Christian Writers Guild Operation First Novel.

C. J. co-founded the Christian entertainment Web site TitleTrakk.com with her sister, Tracy, and has been actively promoting Christian fiction through book reviews and author interviews. She makes her home in Pennsylvania with her family and their menagerie of dogs and cats. Visit her website www.cjdarlington.com for more info.


See my early post about this blog tour also.

Thicker than Blood
Publisher/Publication Date: Tyndale House Publishers, Dec 2009
ISBN: 978-1-4143-3448-6
400 pages


Miss Haley said...

yay for home-school authors! this book looks awesome, i've seen quite a few high ratings for it so far. great review!

Brimful Curiosities said...

The cover is gorgeous. I imagine the author incorporated some of her bookstore experiences into the book. I haven't heard of Title Trakk before but I'm a fan of Christian fiction. Thanks for your review.


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