Wednesday, May 12, 2021

ROOTS OF WOOD AND STONE by Amanda Wen, Reviewed by Winnie and Paula


Amanda Wen has penned a fantastic tale with her debut novel Roots of Wood and Stone. Weaving historical characters Annabelle Collins and Jack Brennan and their story, with that of contemporary Sloane Kelley and Garrett Anderson created an intriguing storyline with many twists and turns. This book was quick to capture my interest and hold on to it tightly. With a cast of realistic and endearing characters and a foray into family history, the story was both emotional and satisfying. I enjoyed the notes from the author about her inspiration for the book from the history of her ancestors.

Themes of forgiveness, healing, and hope are seamlessly entwined in the book and give it extra depth and dimension. Readers who enjoy historical fiction combined with romance and a touch of mystery will undoubtedly love this book. I’m looking forward to more great novels from this author. 4.5 stars
*I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Kregel Publications through Interviews and Reviews. All opinions are my own.

Fabulous debut.

I so love novels steeped in the history of the author. This lovely dual-time book is a prime example. Ms. Wen draws on extensive research into her family tree to give us a exceptional story of life, love and lessons learned.

It is a fabulous story of Sloane Kelley who is adopted and feels the loss of her own history. She is a curator at a historical museum in Wichita, Kansas when Garrett Anderson brings in an artifact discovered when he was clearing out his grandmother’s attic. Little did Sloane know how God would use an old satchel to answer her longing heart.

Garrett is a planner but he has forgotten to enter seeking God into his plans for the future. Together, Sloane and Garrett pour through old diaries and find their life answers. There are a lot of surprises along with laughter and tears. This author knows how to write romance and sizzling kisses!

Past and present meld in a fascinating way. And at the root of it all is a lesson both generations of characters learn: we all have worth in God and He can give us more than we deserve or expect.
*A complimentary copy of this book was provided by Kregel through Interviews and Reviews. I was not required to give a favorable review. All opinions are my own.*
I give this 5 stars and a strong faith thread. 

Sedgewick County Chronicles, Book One
BackCover Blurb:
This historic home holds the keys to their destiny . . . and their hearts

Abandoned at birth, her family roots a mystery, historical museum curator Sloane Kelley has dedicated her life to making sure others know theirs. When a donor drops off a dusty old satchel, she doesn't expect much from the common artifact . . .until she finds real treasure inside: a nineteenth-century diary.Now she's on the hunt to find out more.

Garrett Anderson just wanted to clean out his grandmother's historic but tumbledown farmhouse before selling it to fund her medical care. With her advancing Alzheimer's, he can't afford to be sentimental about the family home. But his carefully ordered plan runs up against two formidable obstacles: Sloane, who's fallen in love with both the diaries and the house, and his own heart, which is irresistibly drawn to Sloane.

A century and a half earlier, motherless Annabelle Collins embarks with her aunt and uncle on the adventure of a lifetime: settling the prairies of Sedgwick County, Kansas. The diaries she left behind paint a portrait of life, loss, and love--and a God who faithfully carries her through it all. Paging through the diaries together takes Sloane and Garrett on a journey they never could have planned, which will change them in ways they never imagined.

This warm, beautifully written split-time novel will resonate with readers looking for stories that reveal the beauty of God's plan for our lives, and how our actions ripple for generations.
Kregel Publishing, April 2021
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