Catherine West is a brand new to me author. After reading the back of the book I wasn't sure I wanted to read the novel. Simply because Natalie's twin dies. I just didn't want a sad story.
But, lo and behold, curiosity got the best of me and I cracked the cover. And began reading the first page. That's where the author got me...hook, line and sinker.
As I began reading about Natalie I felt her pain but, yet, I couldn't understand her need to not go back home. Family is all you have so it seemed to me that Natalie was being somewhat selfish in fleeing from her family. When someone dies, especially a child, everyone in the family feels the pain.
Anyway, this turned out not to be sad a story. In fact, it was fairly modern and moved along well.
The crux of the story seems to be Natalie letting go and finding peace in the death of her twin. Also, she comes to grip with life "issues."
A Touching Story of Moving On - My Review of The Memory of You
April 18, 2017
Rib Lake, WI
Published by: Thomas Nelson
By: Catherine West
I love reading all kinds of fiction, and I was excited to have the chance to read and review The Memory of You.
This book tells the story of a young woman who is having a hard time moving on from a mistake that she made as a teen and the loss that she suffered because of that. It is a story of a man who is dealing with a lot in his life, including pain from his past. It is a story of moving on from the past.
Who the book is for:
This book is great for anyone who likes a touching story focused on family and love.
What I liked:
The characters in this book are very interesting and I felt like I really had the chance to get to know them.
The story is interesting and it kept my attention.
I really liked the way that this story is focused on family. I enjoyed reading about the relationships between adult children and their parents/grandparents.
This is an emotional read.
What I didnt like:
There is a part of the story that runs through the whole book that just goes against my beliefs. I won't share it because of the spoiler that it is, but I really wish that the story could have been written without that controversial issue being included.
Overall, I was a fan of this book.
I give The Memory of You 4 out of 5 stars.
I received this book free to review from BookLook Bloggers. The opinions expressed in this review are my true thoughts and feeling regarding this book. I am disclosing this information in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255.
"The house now soothed and scared her. Bade her welcome like an old friend, but held a warning like a long forgotten journal, tattered pages filled with too much pain." (15)
What memories do you have that when taken hold, will do all sort of things in your heart and mind? The Memory of You by Catherine West does just that. Bringing a story of regrets past, it stirs up more than hurt in the characters' mind, but also the sweet memories. Maybe for the readers too.
Heartbreaking yet filled with grace, the author has a way in handling the most difficult subjects, that is every bit a reality as it is in fiction. Can you relate to Tanner or Natalie? What about their families that either are with them each step or not at all cognizant of what is going on? Sometimes the regrets, the memories, the hurt may not reveal itself on the surface, detrimental to any type of relationship, and even eventually one's daily life. Healing may take more than time, but allowing change, allowing memories to not be forgotten but embraced, and ultimately allowing God's grace to work it all together. My heart took a turn with this story. It stayed with me for more days than typical, as my heart and mind reserve the reaction to a select few only, and The Memory of You is one. It's not only the story of The Memory of You, but what the story evoked in me.
Beautifully written, intrinsically ingrained with love, faith and grace, and the slow-burn of romance through time that makes The Memory of You worth a place in your shelves and in your memory.
"Funny how one smile from her could reach right through him and turn on the lights, even on the darkest of days" (270)
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from the author/publisher. I was not required to write a positive review, and have not been compensated for this. This is my honest opinion.
Natalie lost her twin sister in an accident when they were thirteen, and shes been suffering the after-effects for the fifteen years since. Now shes forced to return to the scene of the accident, her grandfathers vineyard in California, where she reconnects with family and old friends.
And Natalie is disconnected. We see this early onshe's recently broken her engagement, she appears to have only one friend, and her relationship with her parents is distant, her relationship with her grandfather non-existent from having not seen him in fifteen years.
Natalie never knew what her mother was thinking, never knew how she felt. And couldn't imagine what it must be to live a life marked in half-finished sentences.
Her father would always find a flaw. Even her best was never good enough.
Its rare to read a Christian novel about mental illness.
There are quite a few about returning soldiers suffering from PTSD. Its even rarer to read a Christian novel where the heroines mental illness is treated with drugs. Its as though taking drugs to treat a mental illness is seen as a sign of weakness, even though most of us happily pop pills for a headache, or get the flu jab every year. And dont tell me physical pain is somehow different.
That painkiller isnt stopping your body from hurting. Its stopping your brain from telling you your body is hurting.
The Memory of You reunites two teenage almost-sweethearts fifteen years later. It's got the issues-driven emotional punch of other Catherine West titles I've read, but more of a focus on the developing relationship (aka romance) between Natalie and Tanner. It's a story of unearthing secrets, acknowledging truth, and finding reconciliation for both Natalie and Tanner.
It's a fascinating lesson in how wrong our assumptions can beand how that can mess with our relationships, with God and with family and friends.
Recommended. Thanks to Thomas Nelson and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.
This story gives so much to its readers. It's one very emotional ride for the characters, but the lessons in grace and forgiveness are unmistakable. It didn't take long for me to be swept away to the lovely vineyards, where heritage and hard work are intertwined.
There is a lot of emotions for everyone to work through in this story. Natalie's journey is very difficult and my heart cried for her through her loss and struggle. I was gripped by every page to see if she'd overcome the past that haunts her.
Tanner's life has its heartache too, which had me in tears at times. I just wanted to give him a hug! Watching his story unfold around Natalie's was very well done. The sweet moments wrapped around the serious ones in a healthy balance. This book isn't what I would call lighthearted, but it still offers the light of truth and hope to its readers.
I also loved the homey feel that the winery brings to Natalie's story, along with her grandfather's presence. The secondary characters have full lives too and are facing their own uphill battles.
This author always manages to create a delicate balance of reality, while rewarding readers with a satisfying conclusion. I admire her strength in storytelling.
I received a free copy from the publisher. No review, positive or otherwise, was required. All opinions are my own.