Hope In My Heart Review
Hope in My Heart is a collection of short, heartwarming stories with characters in need of hope.
In “Love Unexpected,” a car crash brings commitment-wary Sebastian and career woman Chandra together. Neither is looking for romance, but those around them see the potential, and Sebastian and Chandra discover that sometimes love shows up unexpectedly.
Christmastime is the setting for the middle story, “The Best Gift.” Christina desires to lose ten pounds so she can fit into her dress for her sister’s wedding. Jordan wishes her mom would stop trying to marry her off. And Joshua hopes to be reunited with his ex-girlfriend but eventually learns that the best gift this Christmas will be the restoration of his relationship with God.
In “Peace and Love,” three characters living in a metropolitan area are desperately searching. Elle, a starving artist, aspires to become a paid professional. Eric, a divorce attorney, wants to resolve his issues concerning his parents’ divorce. Kristine anticipates finding her birth mom before she marries Derek. All characters pray their searches will conclude this holiday season and fill their hearts with peace and love.
Guest Post from Alexis Goring
It’s an honor to have my first published book, Hope in My Heart: A Collection of Heartwarming Stories, going on a blog tour with Celebrate Lit!
I met Sandra, founder of Celebrate Lit, through Facebook when she asked me to be one of the book reviewers for her company. At the moment, I was in grad school pursuing my MFA in Creative Writing so I didn’t have time to write a review. But I enjoyed reading my fellow bloggers’ reviews of the books featured by a blog tour hosted by Celebrate Lit. Imagine how delighted I was to be afforded the opportunity to participate in one of these tours not as a blogger but as a featured author!
I’m guessing that you’d like to know a little bit about me as an author. So, here’s my (real-life) story: I’m an East Coast girl with a love for writing, photography, good food and music that inspires hope in my heart. Most people think that I’m either from New York, California or an “exotic island”. They are right about the island heritage, because my dad is from the Caribbean. I love making connections with people and learning from their life stories. I believe in finding the good in everything and showing God’s love to the world. I have a heart for the hurting and hungry. I want to help people discover their true worth and realize their true identity—they are loved and belong to the Creator of the Universe. I believe that I achieve that goal to an extent, through my Christian lifestyle blog, “God is Love.”
As an author, my goal is to warm the hearts of my readers, bring a smile to their face and point them to the One who loves them with all of His Heart. I am talking about God. He’s amazing! I’m so grateful to Him for giving me the gift of writing and showing me ways to share my writing and His love with the world! I love that He made a way for me to publish my first book and is making a way for me to publish my next ones.
Hope in My Heart: A Collection of Heartwarming Stories was originally published by Crossbooks (former imprint of B&H Publishing Group) in Sept. 2013. However, after Crossbooks closed, my book was re-branded by WestBow Press (a division of Thomas Nelson & Zondervan) and re-released in Nov. 2015. It’s available for purchase on Amazon.com and a few other book retailer sites online. Initially, it was on the shelves at Barnes & Noble (my favorite bookstore) but since being re-branded, it’s only available online.
Book Review by Bree Herron
To write a book of more than one story is ambitious, I feel that the author has a high level of energy and ambition when it comes to writing. I was looking forward to reading this collection of short stories, as it would be a change of pace for me in the reading elements. I was however, saddened with the lack of depth in the stories. I would truly like to see each story created into it’s own novella and given an opportunity to grow, as I saw a huge amount of potential in each story.
I was heart broken by the lack of Christ in this story. I was very unhappy with the level of ego that the male character showed, and that all the women seemed to have moments of dumbness. I felt degraded reading this story. I felt moments where the author was giving such care to details, and she elaborated beautifully, then she would give us a moment of ego and annoyance. I am a HUGE seat belt safety advocate, and found the details of the “accident” to not mirror any research. I would hope that with an opportunity to have growth we would see the relationship build in a manner that is more sweeping vs. egotistical. People can fall in love at first sight, but I want to be able to believe the scenes of such moments.
The Best Gift
Out of all the stories, this one held more faith and character connections for me. In fact, I enjoyed reading this one ( I read this book in it’s entirety three times) each time, it gave me moments of emotions that almost made up for the first story. I would love to see this one polished up, having the end of the book relaxed instead of rushed.
Peace and Love
I finally, found the connection to the holidays. Though story two does touch on it, I felt that this story held some cliche’ moments, and could have used some different character interactions.
I know that this is not one of the high points in my reviewing career, and I prayed on doing this. It is my hope though that maybe the author could use these thoughts from an unbiased reviewer to help her create stories that are built from already great possibilities. I just think jumbling them together in a book wasn’t allowing for each story to build and the endings, and depth of characters were rushed or lacking. I pray that the author can understand that I am not one that goes out of her way to be harsh in my thoughts. I pray that she will take my review into consideration.
Do you find short novellas enjoyable? Answer here and click the link to enter the giveaway! https://promosimple.com/ps/a2fc
**DISCLAIMER: I was provided an opportunity to read this book as an Advanced Reader Copy in return for a fair and honest review.
September 1: Bibliophile Reviews
September 2: Faithfully Bookish
September 3: Bukwurmzzz
September 3: The Power of Words
September 4: Mary Hake
September 5: cherylbbookblog
September 6: History, Mystery & Faith
September 7: A Baker’s Perspective
September 8: Southern Chelle
September 9: Book Reviews From an Avid Reader
September 10: Karen’s Krayons
September 11: Through the Open Window
September 11: Singing Librarian Books
September 12: His Grace is Sufficient
September 13: Carpe Diem
September 14: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations
To celebrate her tour, Alexis is giving away seven eBook copies of her book Hope in My Heart! Click here to enter: https://promosimple.com/ps/a2fc