Monday, October 12, 2009

Things Worth Remembering by Jackina Stark - MY REVIEW

“There are some things for which there are no words.” (p.42)

There are times when tears are the only language we are capable of. That is where I find myself as I reach the final page of Jackina Stark’s latest novel, Things Worth Remembering. Once again, this brilliant author has reduced me to a sobbing puddle of tears, and left me an extremely satisfied reader! I will confess that about half-way through I became a bit overwhelmed with the drama unfolding, but the end result…amazing as always!

Things Worth Remembering takes the reader through the final week prior to Maisey Laswell’s wedding. The only daughter of Kendy and Luke Laswell has come home after college graduation to marry the love of her life, Marcus. From the very beginning of the journey it is very obvious that Maisey does not want to go home and have to spend any time with her mother. Since this week is one traditionally filled with special family moments, it doesn’t take long for Marcus to realize that Maisey is shutting her mother out completely. When he is bold enough to ask why Maisey is being so blatantly awful to her mother, he sets a spark to nine years of volatile emotions and when the flames erupt, it seems possible that the entire family will be consumed.

But for the grace of God, Luke and Kendy’s relationship would have been consumed by wrong choices many years before. However, God took them both through the fire, and they came through stronger and closer than ever before. Facing their only child’s fury is something the Lord has been preparing them for over the years, and they work through the pain and confront the hidden enemy head on. I wish every couple were as bold and strong in their weak moments as Luke and Kendy. I wish we were all so shaped by God’s Word that we were able to face the pain and heartache of life with the grace these two find in their faith and in one another. Precious!

There is another layer to the story that serves as the icing on the cake, as it were. It seems Kendy there are issues unresolved between she and her own mother, and it takes an unexpected emergency to facilitate the face to face that these two women need. Although this relationship played out in the background of the primary story line, the depth that it added to Kendy’s character only served to make the overall effect of the novel much more satisfying.

Jackina Stark has the ability to create believable characters that evoke strong emotions in her readers. There was never a point in the novel when an action or word seems forced or misplaced. The ending of the novel was the perfect picture of God’s abundant grace and extravagant love for His children, and it served as the perfect ending to a very traumatic week of family events! Things Worth Remembering is a book worth re-reading and sharing! Another treasure from the pen of Jackina Stark.


I have also spoken nationally and internationally at many retreats and seminars and enjoy running into many readers and former students. I have written frequently for both Christian Standard and Lookout, periodicals of Standard Publishing. Years ago I wrote two non-fiction books, published by College Press, but currently out of print. These days, I’m exploring fiction. My first novel, Tender Grace, was released by Bethany House January 2009, and my second novel, Things Worth Remembering, will be released in October, 2009. I’m working on new projects, including a third novel, as time permits. Whether speaking or writing, I love the opportunity to tell about Him whom Jesus called “Holy Father” and “the only true God.”

She lives in Joplin, Missouri with her husband, and she spends most of her free time doing is reading and writing. That is what she usually do when she's not teaching, enjoying the children and grandchildren, or sitting on the back porch drinking a Diet Coke and watching her husband till the garden!

Please visit Bethany House pubisher's website to learn more about this great book!

1 comment:

Mocha with Linda said...

Beautiful! I wrote mine last night and was just waiting to tack it on to the CFBA post!