Friday, October 30, 2015

Book Review: Sweet Forgiveness

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.
(Synopsis courtesy of Amazon.)

Melissa Amster:

I really enjoyed Lori Nelson Spielman's sophomore novel, Sweet Forgiveness. She takes on an original concept and goes in directions I would not have expected at all. There were so many twists that I never saw what was around each corner. It is very easy to get swept up by the strong and compelling narrative and it kept me on my toes.

The story is very heartfelt and inspires me to apologize more but also has me second-guessing things I should apologize for. The dialogue is so genuine and doesn't hold back. There's also great use of description that made me want to visit New Orleans. And of course, I love the romantic aspect of this novel.

Really, there was nothing I didn't like about Sweet Forgiveness. Bravo to Lori on a job well done!

Movie casting ideas:
Hannah: Mila Kunis or Laura Prepon (I know they're both from That 70s Show, but they would do equally well in this role.)
RJ: Michiel Huisman
Michael: Jon Hamm
Dorothy: June Squibb
Claudia: Ksenia Solo (and yes, I also have a thing for actors from Orphan Black)
Jade: Gabrielle Union

Thanks to Lori Nelson Spielman  for the book in exchange for an honest review.

Caryn Strean:

I definitely related to Hannah immensely, as I was a broadcast journalism major in college, and completely understand how ratings mean more to the station than feelings or personal lives.

Lori Nelson Spielman created an interesting phenomenon with her Forgiveness Stones, which reminded me a lot of last year’s ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. I liked how the whole novel stemmed from personal experiences of forgiveness and whether it ends up being sweet or creating more devastation.

I’m embarrassed to say that I haven’t had a chance to read Lori’s debut novel, The Life List, but after reading this, I plan to move it to the top of my list. Her engaging writing can easily have you finishing this book in days. I tore through it in 48 hours.

Overall, this was a wonderful read that is sure to make you think twice of how much “I’m sorry” truly means.

Caryn Strean is a mom by day and reader by night. Asking her to name her favorite book is like asking her to choose a favorite child. Her friends call her The Book Whisperer. Caryn can be reached on FacebookTwitter, and Goodreads.

1 comment:

Janine said...

This book sounds really good. Thanks for the recommendation!