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Still aching over his wife's death, Cody Gunner can't bear the thought of also letting go of his Down Syndrome brother, Carl Joseph. Cody wants his brother home, where he will be safe and cared for, not out on his own in a world that Cody knows all too well can be heartless and insecure. So when Carl Joseph's teacher, Elle, begins championing his independence, she finds herself at odds with Cody. But even as these two battle it out, they can not deny the instinctive connection they share, and Cody faces a crisis of the heart.
Number of Pages: 352
Vendor: Center Street
Publication Date: 2007
|Dimensions: 8.00 X 5.25 (inches)|
Availability: In Stock
A Treasury of Christmas Miracles: True Stories of God's PresenceKaren Kingsbury4.5 Stars Out Of 5 15 ReviewsSave 29%
Still aching over his wife's death, Cody Gunner can't bear the thought of also letting go of his Down's Syndrome brother, Carl Joseph. Cody wants his brother home, where he will be safe and cared for, not out on his own in a world that Cody knows all too well can be heartless and insecure. So when Carl Joseph's teacher, Elle, begins championing his independence, she finds herself at odds with Cody. But even as these two battle it out, they can't deny the instinctive connection they share, and Cody faces a crisis of the heart. What if Elle is the one woman who can teach Cody that love is still possible? If Cody can let go of his lingering anger, he might just see that sometimes the brightest hope of all lies just beyond the clouds.
Elle is damaged after a traumatic experience in love and has committed herself fully to her work. She thinks she will never find genuine love, but finds fulfillment in her teaching of special-needs adults. Cody has also rejected the thought of love after his wifes death, so, naturally, they both feel an instant connection when they first meet. However, Cody reacts angrily to Elles work, which she obviously does not appreciate, and repeated misunderstandings prevent any relationship early on. Meanwhile, Carl Josephs health rapidly deteriorates.
Although the premise of the book is unique and the topics addressed are unconventional and interesting, the main characters appear more like stereotypes from romantic novels. They seem a bit predictable, and they only infrequently reach any verisimilitude with real people. Many of the minor characters have depth, but they are rarely in the spotlight.
The main characters, Cody and Elle, are a bit one-dimensional. Cody reacts angrily to most of the events in the novel, and Elle tends to think the same few thoughts throughout until the climax. The true personality of the book is found in the secondary characters: Elles students. The scenes of classroom interaction are the most touching episodes in the book, and in a sense they are more emotionally charged than many of the actual love scenes.
Just Beyond the Clouds has some unique facets in plot and theme, but the characterization is less than it could be from this accomplished writer. Kingsbury enthusiasts will enjoy it and fans of A Thousand Tomorrows will find it a must-read. However, romance readers or those interested in sampling the genre may be dissatisfied by the novel due to the predictability of the central characters. Althea Kalman, Christian Book Previews.com
"Tender-hearted readers beware! Karen has done it again! After you turn the last page of JUST BEYOND THE CLOUDS and put away the tissues, you will find yourself thinking of the characters again and again. Every time you do, you will smile."
"Karen is a gifted writer who confronts the hard issues with truth and sensitivity."
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