Never met a Neta Jackson book I didn't like and this one is no exception. She has such a gift. Her characters are so believable and I have to admit that I am Jody Baxter in real life. I truly recommend that you start with the Yada Yada series and read them all. But be prepared! You will do nothing else but read once you start. You can't put them down. Then go to the House of Hope series. Which leads us to Stand by Me, the first in the Souled out Sisters series.
Avis Douglas, principal of an elementary school and leader of the Yada Yada prayer group is reaching a critical point in her life. Her and her husband Peter are at a crossroads and need to make critical decisions in their lives. But Avis daughter and grandson are missing and then through in the mix the group of college kids who move into their building for the summer.
It moves me because the character is a leader and well thought of person but makes mistakes and has doubts just like we do. God doesn't let her down though and sees her through. You will love this book.....five stars!
Although I have read some of Neta Jackson's children novels, this is the first of her 'adult' novels I have read. What an awesome novel, following Katheryn Davies (also know as Kat with a K) from the exhibition tent at the Midwest Music Festival in Central Illinois where she became a born-again Christian, to a few years later when she is in College living out her Christianity. By coming into her life just after her decision to follow Christ, and continuing, we have a good example of her growth in maturity, as well as those time she is too bold. Impetuous, and talkative, she has a tendency to irritate those older than her generation, especially some so 'together' as Avis Douglass appears to be. Neta delves directly into many issues - mother and daughter relationships, stepfathers, abusive father, peer relationships (both female and male), reconciliation as well as racism, in a realistic and mind-changing way. I enjoyed the young peoples' enthusiasm for reaching out to others to spread the gospel. Yet at no point did I feel the novel to be preachy, though church services were included.
Strong characters, yet each vulnerable, teachable for the most part, make this a great novel to use as a study book, and there is a study guide included in the book. A super book I will pass on to my friends, and look for other SouledOut Sisters novels in the series.
I received this free ebook from ThomasNelson Publishers through their booksneeze program in exchange for an honest review, which I have done. A posititve review was not required. The opinions stated are my own.
Well, I may be the crazy one around here but I had never heard of Neta Jackson before I found her book Stand by Me on Booksneeze! I really enjoyed this book but it took me a few chapters to get into it. It starts with a college student at a music festival in the midwest where she finds Jesus! This makes her decide to change the course of her future, which her parents aren't very happy about.
Kat, the college student, and some of her friends start attending Souledout Community Church. Avis, a middle aged praise and worship leader, who is an elementary principal, is one of the first people the group meets. Avis has things going on in her life that Kat is unaware of (mostly because Avis apears to have it all together during praise & worship time) and there are things in Kat's life that Avis is not aware of. I found myself scolding Avis for her treatment of the young group. This made me take a good hard look at myself and what I think about other people. You know, judging_?
Neta had written the Yada-Yada Prayer group books! I DID NOT know that! They are on my Kindle! So I will be checking out more of her writings in the future.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneezeÂ®.com <http://BookSneezeÂ®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
Stand by Me by Neta Jackson is the first book in the SouledOut Sisters series, a spin-off from the Yada Yada Prayer Group series. Avis Douglass has long been the disciplinarian of Yada Yada, keeping her sisters in line like she does as the principal of a Chicago elementary school. But her life is taking some turns that leave her frustrated and distant from the Lord. When Kat Davies enters her life, Avis wants nothing to do with the do-good college student who has a whole lot of ideas about how others should live their lives that don't have much to do with reality. And Kat keeps popping up in Avis' life, attending her church at SouledOut, moving into her building, and the two women couldn't have less in common. I don't know why I keep doubting Neta Jackson. When it was announced that she was ending the Yada Yada Prayer Group series, I couldn't imagine any series being as compelling, until I met Gabby Fairbanks in the House of Hope series. When that series was ending, I was again disappointed and didn't think a series starring no-nonsense Avis would be as moving, but Jackson just keeps proving me wrong! She really throws Avis' world into confusion, allowing us to really see this strong woman of faith and see how she keeps her faith through the hard times. But Jackson keeps Avis' edge in the relationship with good-intentioned Kat. Kat is another character who at first seems unrelatable, but as I kept reading, I could see the heart of this beautiful young woman who wants to make a difference and has absolutely no idea where to begin. The relationship between these two women is thoroughly entertaining and poignant, especially when at the climax Jackson cuts through the noise and exposes the hole in Kat's heart in such a way that it opens Avis'. Jackson's writing is also a treat, and I don't know how I am going to get through the waiting until the next book is released!