Thursday, November 10, 2011

Book Review: There You’ll Find Me

Release Date: Oct. 4, 2011
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Pages: 320 pages
Genre: Christian Fiction, Contemporary Romance
Source: Publisher through NetGalley
Buy: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Goodreads Summary: In a small cottage house in rural Ireland, Finley discovers she can no longer outrun the past.

When Finley travels to Ireland as a foreign exchange student, she hopes to create a new identity and get some answers from the God who took her brother away and seems to have left her high and dry.

But from the moment she boards the plane and sits by Beckett Rush, teen star of the hottest vampire flicks, nothing goes according to Finley's plan.

When she gets too close to Beckett, a classmate goes on a mission to make sure Finley packs her bags, departs Ireland-and leaves Beckett alone.

Finley feels the pressure all around. As things start to fall apart, she begins to rely on a not-so-healthy method of taking control of her life.

 Finley tries to balance it all-disasters on the set of Beckett's new movie, the demands of school, and her growing romance with one actor who is not what he seems. Yet Finley is also not who she portrays to Beckett and her friends. For the first time in her life, Finley must get honest with herself to get right with God.
I don't read a lot of contemporary fiction. I’m more of an escapist reader who prefers fantasy, paranormal romance and science fiction but my friend KM from One Page at a Time raved about this book and recommended that I read it, and since she has never given me a bad recommendation, I thought I would give it a try. I loved There You’ll Find Me so much. It made me laugh, made me cry, made me think about all the things in my own life that I try to control when I should really just let go and let God handle it. While I did not know it at the time, There You’ll Find Me was exactly the kind of book I needed to read. 

Finley, heiress to a hotel chain and recovering party girl, cannot get over the death of her beloved older brother, Will. She is angry at God for not saving Will, a devout Christian and humanitarian who was working to rebuild schools in Afghanistan when he was killed by a bomb. Seeking closure and peace, Finley follows in her brother’s footsteps by going to Ireland for her senior year of high school, just as he did.

Finley is smart and snarky. She is also loving, kind and oh so flawed. I found her to be such a realistic and likable character. She considers Ireland a fresh start but for a girl who has felt that her life is out of control, Finley strives to control what she can (her diet, weight and her relationships with others) with disastrous results. There is an awesome romance in this book that is so sweet! Beckett is a teen heartthrob movie star (along the lines of Robert Pattinson) and the dialogue between he and Finley is hilarious. While I loved seeing the relationship between Finley and Beckett develop, it is not main focus of the book. There You’ll Find Me is really about Finley’s healing and finding her way back to a loving God who never left her in the first place.

The main characters and the secondary characters in this book are very well developed and I must point out that Ireland itself is like a secondary character. The descriptions of the country are breathtaking and makes me want to get there and see it for myself! I also love Jones’ subtle but effective writing, mainly the steady way we see Finley’s issues spiraling out of control. The pacing in the book is perfect, it’s never rushed and not too slow either.

There You’ll Find Me is not your mom’s Christian fiction. It’s fresh, funny, entertaining and extremely appealing to anyone who wants to read really good contemporary YA fiction. I want to thank Ms. Jones for showing me that a book about heavy issues can be sensitively written with humor and light. I’m really, really hoping that she plans on writing more books like this.

Content: Kissing.

My Rating: The Best!


A. Knight said...

I've also heard wonderful things about this book. And I've learned not to let contemps with subtle Christian elements set me back (River of Time series by Lisa T. Bergren anyone?). Now, I'm eager to read this!

- Asher (from Paranormal Indulgence)

KM said...

YAY! So glad you enjoyed this one, too. :) And I'm glad I haven't steered you wrong yet. Here's to hoping I keep up my winning streak. lol

Alexis @ Reflections of a Bookaholic said...

wow, wow, wow! I'm inspired :) I'm adding this one to my list for sure.

Jenny B. Jones said...

Wow. Thank you so much for the shoutout and lovely review.

Asheley (@BookwormAsheley) said...

I'm so excited to have been approved for this one on netgalley! I've had people recommend Jenny B. Jones to me for such a long time, and this will be my first of her books! I'm so excited! I've heard such AWESOME things.


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