CONGRATULATIONS!

Congratulations to Alison (agboss) who won Susanne Dietze's The Reluctant Guardian!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Book Review: True North by Susan Diane Johnson


    I have to be honest here.  I'm not much of one to read contemporary fiction.  Historical is more my thing.  But in just a few pages, I was drawn in by True North
    This is the story of Joe and Lisa Kendall, a mostly happily-married couple who have been drifting apart.  As the book opens, their love and commitment, to each other and to God, is shaken by tragedy.  On the verge of divorce, Joe decides to go ahead and take their already-booked Alaskan cruise, wanting to be alone to lick his wounds and nurse his guilt.  Lisa decides she will go on the cruise, too, but she doesn't tell Joe until the ship has left port and it's too late for her to turn back.

    I enjoyed this story so much!  The couple's grief and healing throughout was very touching.  It was believable and true and not soppy or manipulative, and more than once it brought tears to my eyes.  Suzie wrote it in such a way that I was very quickly rooting for these people, eager to see them heal and turn back to each other and to God. 
    It made me chuckle, too, to know that, instead of the luxurious, balconied room they had originally booked, they were stuck in a tiny cabin with bunk beds.  Bunk beds!  What a perfect way to make them stop hiding from each other.  During the trip, they find they each have secrets they are afraid to share and things each of them did not know about the other.  And when they begin to thaw towards each other, when they began to take their first shy steps towards trust and forgiveness, my heart was truly touched.
    But Joe and Lisa aren't the only likeable characters in the story.  There's also a darling little boy, Brandon, who's with his own grieving father, and Jessica, the older lady who has words of comfort and wisdom for both of the Kendalls.  And then there is Alaska herself, a gorgeous backdrop to the story. 
    All in all, True North is a sweet, satisfying read that will touch your heart and make you want to fall in love all over again.
    Congratulations, Suzie!  Well done!
   

Are there any questions you'd like to ask Suzie about her writing or her new book? 

Suzie has generously offered to give away a copy of True North to a lucky commenter. Please leave a comment by 11:59 pm Jan 31, eastern time, to be entered!



DeAnna Julie Dodson has always been an avid reader and a lover of storytelling, whether on the page, the screen or the stage. This, along with her keen interest in history and her Christian faith, shows in her tales of love, forgiveness and triumph over adversity. She is the author of In Honor Bound, By Love Redeemed and To Grace Surrendered, a trilogy of medieval romances, as well as Letters in the Attic, The Key in the Attic, The Diary in the Attic and The Legacy in the Attic, contemporary mysteries. Her new series of Drew Farthering Mysteries debuted in the Summer of 2013 with  Rules of Murder,  to be followed by Death by the Book and Murder at the Mikado in 2014 from Bethany House.  A fifth-generation Texan, she makes her home north of Dallas with three spoiled cats.   

24 comments:

  1. Thanks DeAnna - what a great review. I have to say it's odd but I like to cry during a story. I want to be that involved emotionally, so it's a selling point for me.

    I love Suzie's writing so I really look forward to this story. I know Susie Dietze is going to interview her and we have a release party later this month so we get to celebrate with her.

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    1. Then Deb, I hope I make you cry. ;)

      Thank you for loving my writing, and I hope I don't disappoint you.

      Oh, and remember that movie you shared about on fb yesterday? Waitstaff! CF and MB!

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    2. Oh, I like a good fictional cry, too!

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  2. I would be most happy to win a copy of this book! Thanks for entering my name!

    An Alaskan cruise is on my wish list...maybe someday my husband and I can go. I don't want bunk beds though! ;)
    elaineking1 at hotmail dot come

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    1. I have the cruise on my wishlist, too, Elaine. I've talked to so many people who've taken the trip.

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  3. Thank you, DeAnna, for the lovely review!

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    1. You're more than welcome, Suzie. The book was great. So touching. I hope it sells a million!

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    2. Thank you! If it does we'll go on that cruise!

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  4. Wonderful review, DeAnna. Suzie is a gifted writer and her stories truly touch the heart.

    Congratulations again, Suzie!

    sigh, I'd love to go on an Alaskan cruise. Maybe even a Disney one. We priced it once, just to see. Ay!

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    1. Thanks, Susie. It was great to be able to do the review for Suzie's book. Loved it.

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    2. Susie, that's so sweet. Thank you! My friend and her daughter went on a Disney cruise to Alaska. She said it was great fun!

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  5. Wait, did you say the prize is a free Alaskan cruise? :)

    Congratulations on the book, Suzie!

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    1. I thought Suzie was taking us all on an Alaskan cruise. Isn't that it, Suz?

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    2. You guys are so so funny! I wish. Hey, if I sold a million copies, then I could probably swing that!

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  6. What a great review! This has definitely piqued my interest. What a unique setting. Sounds like a great read.

    Cheers,
    Sue
    sbmason at sympatico dot ca

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Hi Susan! Thank you so much! This book is very special to me! :)

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  7. The story does indeed sound heart-warming and heart-wrenching both. I truly hope to get to read it...my interest is definitely piqued. God bless you, Suzie, and hearty congratulations.

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    1. Thank you so much, Tanya. I appreciate it so much. :)

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  8. Well done, DeAnna. I really like how you reviewed Suzie's book. My interest level increases the more I hear about the story and characters.

    However, I'd opt for a Caribbean or Hawaiian cruise instead of an Alaskan one. Beautiful as it is, there's only so much snow and ice a person wants to see and being Canadian, I've had my fill, thank you.

    Anita looks north today Elaine's house and mutters... Traitor!

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    1. Thank you, Anita! And I can totally understand about not wanting more snow. I don't like to be cold. But I do want to see Alaska and all of those whales!

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    2. Haha Anita! Yes, I get lots of snow and cold but I've heard the Alaskan cruise is one of the best! And it's not all snow and ice! ;)

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  9. a wonderful posting...thanks for the opportunity to read this novel :)

    karenk
    kmkuka at yahoo dot com

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