Saturday, November 29, 2008

I'm Consolidating Mom Said with Liz Sez

I originally set this blog up for reviews and news about my works-in-progress, but I always feel guilty about not posting often enough.

I've decided to go ahead and post reviews on Liz Sez, even though that is the blog that is connected with yourLDSneighborhood. I think it will actually make it a more robust blog.

Here are the reviews that you will find on this blog:

The Crayon Messages, by Christine Thackeray

Ride to Raton, by Marsha Ward

Michael Ethington, I Believe

The Power of Your Patriarchal Blessing, by Gayla Wise

A Future for Tomorrow, by Haley Hatch Freeman

Delicious Conversation, by Jennifer Stewart Griffith

Loyalty's Web, by Joyce DiPastena

Enjoying the Journey, by Jaime Theler & Deborah Talmadge

The Journey, by J. Adams

If you know I've reviewed something, but it isn't here, check Liz Sez.

I'll see you there!

Liz Adair

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Crayon Messages, by Christine Thackeray - A Review

Christine Thackeray is fearless. She doesn’t hesitate to suggest that all is not well in Zion, at least where some of the Relief Society sisters are concerned. Her description of a confrontation in the foyer between Cath Reed and the Relief Society secretary is delicious.
Come to think of it, Cath Reed is fearless, too. She manages to also be articulate and self-possessed—something I never am. I’m one of those people who sputter and stammer and end up saying, “Oh yeah?”

Cath is also Christian and, sigh, an excellent visiting teacher.

Christine Thackeray has fashioned a sweet tale about a visiting teacher with a challenging companion. I won’t tell you what the challenge is, but this companion is the hub around which many of the sub plots turn. And, when you start with such a quirky premise, the sub plots are bound to be interesting and fun, too.

There are lots of little plot loops that spiral around, drawing you in, making you wonder what comes next, and then the ends are tied up quite nicely.

When I say The Crayon Messages is a sweet tale, I don’t mean it’s cloying. It’s like a SweeTart—one of those candies that zings you every now and then just to make sure your acid buds are still functioning.

Christine’s main character, Cath Reed, is well realized. She's definitely a multi-dimensional character. I think I would like to have known more about her secondary characters: the organist, the nursery care leader, the bishop’s inactive wife—even the Relief Society secretary. These aren't your stock ward members, and I 'd love to hear more of their stories. You can bet with Christine Thackeray telling them, they'd be interesting and just slightly off-the-wall.

This is Christine Thackeray’s first novel. I can’t wait to read her second. Maybe I’ll meet some of those secondary characters in the next book, and I’ll get my wish.