Sunday, August 28, 2011

Promises to Keep - Book Review

The narrator of this story is nine year-old Roz who has recently moved to town from Minnesota to escape an abusive husband/father. One afternoon, the family finds their home's previous owner, Mrs. Tillie Monroe sitting on the front porch. She still views the house as hers regardless of the fact her sons sold the house and there is a new family living there. Over time, Roz's mom allows Tillie to move in as a housekeeper/nanny and she rightly becomes part of the family and somewhat of a mentor to Roz. Without the adults in her life knowing, Roz is sought out by her father and begins secretly meeting with him. About the same time, Roz makes a friend, Mara, who has secrets of her own about her father. As the story continues, Tillie becomes ingrained in the family and Roz's secret about her father becomes deeper and deeper. The story comes to a dramatic conclusion that I don't want to spoil. If you want the full story, read the book. :-)

This book gets off to a somewhat slow start but at a certain point, I had to keep reading and at one point, I stayed up WAY past my bedtime to finish it. Tatlock wove an interesting tale using a nine-year old protagonist but it really worked for the book. There were multiple themes running throughout the book including race, family, lies vs. truth, fear, and friendship. Tillie's wisdom provided the spiritual influence for the book - there was a presence but it wasn't overdone. This book provided a solid, interesting storyline with a great ending. I would highly recommend it to anyone.

Bethany House Publishers gave me a free copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest review.

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