“I understood the lure of a good story. Sometimes a world that doesn’t exist is the only escape from the one that does.”
The Story Keeper by Lisa Wingate
Tyndale House Publishers, September 2014
Successful editor, Jen Gibbs loves her job and has recently started working at Vida House Publishing. Working with manuscripts and discovering authors is her passion. When a mysterious envelope appears on her desk from the forbidden Slush Mountain, will she pursue the 20-year-old manuscript? Or will she give up on this long forgotten story of the Appalachian Mountains?
In pursuit of the unknown author, Jen travels back to the Blue Ridge Mountains, the very place she deserted years ago. But if the author is who she suspects, can she persuade him to finish the story?
I was initially drawn to this book because, hello, it centered around a successful editor. But this book holds a story much more complex than what I expected.
This novel has a compelling story line, and I was especially intrigued by the parts that revolved around Jen’s family and their strange, extremist behavior. The community she ran from is a tight, closed group with a particular belief system. As she reenters the part of her life she thought she had left behind, Jen learns not only about who she is, but also tries to bridge the gap between herself and her family. The tension between Jen and her family was the perfect balance of love blended with an aversion to their belief system. It is an uncomfortable place for her, living between her old world and her new one.
Beyond that, this book was a challenge for me to connect with. When Jen arrives home, there is a Warrior Week festival taking place on the mountain. The author Jen is trying to contact about the manuscript she has discovered has a distant connection to this sci-fi festival, however I was confused by it and did not find it necessary. Rather, whenever this festival was mentioned, it took me out of the story.
I loved the premise of this book, but it didn’t completely win me over. It wasn’t for me, but don’t let that stop you from picking it up! For lovers of storylines that feature the mountains, complex family relationships, and a dual storyline, this book is for you. Happy reading!
*Thank you to Tyndale House Publishers who provided a complimentary e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.*