Saturday, March 26, 2011

A Family for Faith by Missy Tippens

Book Review by Suzie Johnson
If you’re a fan of fun, fast-paced contemporary romances with a small-town feel, you’ll want to make sure to read Missy Tippens’ newest book. A Family for Faith is an April release from Love Inspired and in my opinion this is Missy’s best book to date. I’ve enjoyed all of her other books, but I absolutely hands-down loved this book.


Faith Hagin is fairly new to the small town of Corinthia, Georgia, where she owns a coffee shop. Faith is looking forward to a visit from her teenage son (who lives with his father), and hopes they’ll be able to repair their broken relationship. Her failure at motherhood is something she keeps secret from the people of Corinthia, for fear no one will want to associate with her. Given the mistakes she’s made with her son, she repeatedly turns down requests that she help with the church youth group.

Chief of Police Gabe Reynolds is an over-protective father facing the fear of most fathers of young daughters: His little girl is growing up much too quickly. She wants a cell phone. She wants to wear make-up and go to boy-girl parties. Gabe wants to keep her from growing up for as long as possible.

Chelsea Reynolds is twelve going on twenty-four. When she has a difficult time getting her dad to loosen up and quit worrying so much, she pulls out all the stops and enlists Faith’s help in praying for Gabe to find a girlfriend. Unfortunately for Gabe, Chelsea makes the mistake of also asking for prayers from an elderly woman who has a fairly significant prayer network. Gabe is taken by surprise when he starts receiving dinner invitations from eligible women.

When Gabe asks Faith to help out with Chelsea, she’s reluctant to tell him how she failed as a mother. At the same time, she doesn’t want to see him make the same mistakes she did.

Finding himself attracted to Faith, Gabe his a difficult time letting go of the past. And as interested as he might be in pursuing a relationship with her, he has a hard time with the idea of someone else taking his late wife’s place.

A Family for Faith is adorable, funny, and extremely touching. I’ve said before that it’s rare for me to cry when I read a book. I can only think of three in recent years: Emily’s Chance by Sharon Gillenwater, Unspoken by Angela Hunt, and now this is one.

I was immediately caught up in Faith’s relationship with her son, but I also loved her growing relationship with Chelsea. Faith is a beautifully crafted character, and as a mother, I found it so easy to identify with her.

Chelsea is just plain lovable. Who couldn’t sympathize with a young girl eager to grow up, but desperately missing her mother at the same time?

As for Gabe… sigh… he is a sweet, gentle, wonderful, heart-melting hero. Missy created someone special when she dreamed up Gabe. He won’t be easily forgotten, and for him alone, this book is worth the read. If I were giving out a hero-of-the-year award, Gabe would certainly be my top contender.

As a fan of baseball, I loved Missy’s fun little baseball shout-out when Faith buys tickets to an Atlanta Braves vs. the San Francisco Giants game. She makes reference to her son’s favorite Giants player, without naming names. Hmmm… I wonder who that could be? If you know Missy, you’ll know exactly who that player is. If you don’t, and you’re curious, you can probably find your answers by reading her blog: http://lifewithmissy.blogspot.com/.

Suzie Johnson has won several awards for her inspirational novels (writing as Susan Diane Johnson), including the Maggie, Lone Star, Heart of the West, and Beacon awards, as well as finaling in the Touched by Love, Finally A Bride, Linda Howard Award for Excellence, and Virginia Fools For Love contests. She is a member of ACFW, RWA, and is a cancer registrar at her local hospital. The mother of a wonderful young man who makes her proud every day, she lives with her husband and little kitten on an island in the Pacific Northwest. And although the beaches are rocky instead of sandy, lined with Madronas and Evergreens instead of Palm trees, and the surf is much to cold for wading, it is still the perfect spot for writing romantic fiction. You can visit her blog, Suzie's Writing Place at http://suzieswritingplace.blogspot.com/.

13 comments:

  1. Thanks Suzie!

    I have a question, and maybe I'm not the only one. Can someone tell me about subscriptions to Love Inspired? It's available, right? Cost?
    how many?

    I honestly don't buy more than one book a month and mostly hope to find it through my library system. Of course Love Inspireds are very reasonably priced (I only find them in my Walmart--if they're still there when I show up) but I still miss quite a few of them.

    okay - back to Missy's book. It sounds wonderful! I hope if you haven't yet, that you get to meet her in person soon, Suzie. She's a sweetheart and I think that's a great selling point. You get a little bit of Missy in the book!

    I'm hoping to pick this one up next week. I got Ruthy's this week but didn't see any of this month's historicals. Hmmmmm.

    Suzie, you do great reviews!

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  2. I agree with Deb. You do great reviews,Suzie. And I love Missy. This book sounds awesome and look out when those girls start growing up. Scary stuff. :)

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  3. Thank you, Deb. Iused to get the books at walmart, but they don't always have the all so I started ordering from eharlequin. I prefer that to the book club because then I can pick and choose.

    I did meet Missy in San Francisco, and she is such a joy to be around. She's wonderful. Yes, I can definitely see her personality come through in her writing.

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  4. Thanks Jilly! It's so nice to "see" you. :-) I have a son, not a daughter, but I can still identify.

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  5. Suzie, you have a gift for writing book reviews.

    Excellent!!!

    I need to read this book.

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  6. Thanks Gina! You all are so sweet to me.

    You will really enjoy this book. :-)

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  7. Hey, y'all! I'm on a pastor's spouses retreat. But they have internet! So I'm glad I got to stop by today.

    Suzie, thank you for such a wonderful review. I'm so glad you liked the story. And that you "got" it! I love it when people summarize the characters just the way I planned them. :)

    I, too, fell in love with Gabe. And put all my worries about being a perfect mother into Faith. :)

    Deb, thanks for your kind words!

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  8. Debra, as for the book club...

    You can check it out online at readerservice.com. I'm not sure how many books you can order. I do know you can get all 6 per month (for LI) but they may also have the option for less. I don't think my book was in the shipments this time around unless you got all 6. They're priced less than retail, and shipping is only about .25 per book. One advantage is you get them about 2 months early!

    Like Suzie said, you can order individually at e-harlequin. They're available there before they're available on Amazon, etc.

    Our Walmart is great for carrying the books! They get all 6 and carry about 20-25 copies. :)

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  9. Hey, Jill! Yes, I'm sure you know all about girls. :)

    My youngest is a girl. And she was 13 when I wrote the book. So I had easy research on that one!

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  10. Hey, Gina! Yes, I agree! Suzie does a great job. Writing reviews is so hard for me. There's definitely an art to summarizing a story.

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  11. Missy, i'm so glad you stopped by while you're at the retreat. I hope you have a wonderful, uplifting and relaxing time.

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  12. I had a wonderful retreat! Really enjoyed seeing friends I usually just see once or twice a year. Lots of hugs and laughter. :)

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  13. Great review, Suzie! This is another for my TBR pile!

    Nice to see you, Missy! Glad you had a good time on your retreat.

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