I have discovered over the years, that life can be challenging. God desires to sustain us as we look for "splashes of His grace" every day. My desire is that through posts, or book reviews, you may find something that points you to the grace of God, and that He ultimately will make a difference in your life.
Promises to Keep, by Ann Tatlock, is an engaging story written from the perspective of an eleven year old girl named Roz Anthony whose family had recently been uprooted by her mother’s decision to leave Roz’s abusive father. Shortly after their arrival in the small town of Mills River, a stranger, Tillie Monroe, the former owner of the house they had recently purchased, shows up on their front porch determined to live there again – to die in the home that was so much a part of her. This woman, who first was viewed as a nuisance, turned out to be a blessing in disguise as she truly became a part of the family and one who brought love and perspective to their troubled world.
Roz struggled with her desire to have a father that she could trust and love. She wondered if it would ever be possible for her daddy to change so they could be a family again. As a woman of faith, Tillie became a stabilizing force for the family and in her own way, tried to introduce her “Heavenly Father” into Roz’s world. Set in the 1960’s, Promises to Keep alluded to the struggles of that time -- racial issues and the Vietnam War and how they impacted this family.
Though the book had Christian overtones, and the concept of faith and God were seen in Tillie’s life, the book was not “preachy.” The only downside was that the idea of salvation was implied, but not clearly articulated. Ann Tatlock’s writing style was easy and conversational. I liked that the chapters were short and the story was easy to pick up on again, even if it was a couple days between readings. I found the characters to be believable and likeable, especially Tillie. Though the ending was a bit abrupt, it did conclude with a summary of how things turned out in the end. The final few pages of the book contained some discussion questions for either personal or small group use.
Overall I found the book to be an enjoyable summer read and would recommend this book to others.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review.