Tuesday, April 21, 2015

[Book Review] Sweet Forgiveness by Lori Nelson Spielman

Sweet Forgiveness: A NovelSweet Forgiveness: A Novel by Lori Nelson Spielman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

ISBN: 9780147516763
368 print pages
Genre: Women’s Fiction


Part 1: From the book cover

#1 international bestselling author Lori Nelson Spielman follows The Life List with Sweet Forgiveness, in which a woman’s receipt of two “forgiveness stones” sends her searching for atonement

The Forgiveness Stones craze is sweeping the nation—instantly recognizable pouches of stones that come with a chain letter and two simple requests: to forgive, and then to seek forgiveness. But New Orleans' favorite talk show host, Hannah Farr, isn't biting. Intensely private and dating the city’s mayor, Hannah has kept her very own pouch of Forgiveness Stones hidden for two years—and her dark past concealed for nearly two decades. But when Fiona Knowles, creator of the Forgiveness Stones, appears on Hannah’s show, Hannah unwittingly reveals on air details of a decades-old falling out with her mother.

Spurned by her fans, doubted by her friends, and accused by her boyfriend of marring his political career, Hannah reluctantly embarks on a public journey of forgiveness. As events from her past become clearer, the truth she’s clung to since her teenage years has never felt murkier. Hannah must find the courage to right old wrongs, or risk losing her mother, and any glimmer of an authentic life, forever.

Part 2: Recommendation

The second book from the author of The Life List, Lori Nelson Spielman delivers yet another thought-provoking novel in Sweet Forgiveness. Do we have the courage to seek forgiveness as well as to grant forgiveness and be able to truly move on? Is it better to keep secrets buried or is it better to bring it up and be able to clear the air? These are just a few of the questions that readers will encounter as they join Hannah in her quest for truth, love and forgiveness.

I am not much of a nonfiction reader but the way Lori Nelson Spielman quotes parts of the Forgiveness Stones book throughout Sweet Forgiveness makes me want to read the fictitious book by fictitious author Fiona Knowles. As for Hannah, even though she's a year older than I am, in my head, she sounds a lot older like she's around fifty-ish and matronly, which was a bit disconcerting when she first meets RJ so throughout this mild flirtation, I had to mentally remind myself that Hannah is only 34 and physically attractive. I also enjoyed seeing Hannah grow a spine and stand up to Michael and Abby. I felt like cheering along with Jade when that happened. I am naturally a curious being and it bothers me that Sweet Forgiveness ended without really telling me what was inside Bob's red metal tackle box or if the same thing happened to Anne. Sure, there were a couple of scenes that somewhat implied Hannah was right all along but it could also mean, that Anne was referring to what happened to Hannah. Like Hannah, can I learn to live with ambiguity? I'm not entirely sure.

Overall, this is a good book but so far, my favorite from this lovely author is The Life List and I can't wait to read her next book.

Disclaimer: As a member of Penguin's First To Read Program, I received this galley in exchange for an honest review.


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