Monday, May 16, 2011
Leaving by Karen Kingsbury
I think I have read every novel Karen Kingsbury has written. I'm a fan. So I was thrilled with the opportunity to get my hands on Karen's latest novel Leaving. (It's kind of my blogging/book reviewing dream!) Leaving picks up the story of Bailey Flanigan, one of the main characters in previous series.
Leaving is an incredible story about a girl trying to determine the direction that God is leading. Should she stay in Bloomington? Should she pursue a Broadway role in New York City? Should she move to California to pursue Hollywood? Is God opening the door to a new relationship and closing the door on an old one? As Bailey comes to terms with leaving everything familiar and starting over again.
Kingsbury is just as moving as ever. Her writing evokes real emotion and reminded me why I fell in love with her stories years ago. The events throughout the novel are fairly realistic and she's not afraid to put a beloved character through a difficult time. At times, the way some of the stories are resolved seem a bit cheesy ... but sometimes that's life! Also, I love that the Flanigan family is based on Kingsbury's own family.
Leaving is the first novel in the Bailey Flanigan series, but it's not the first story featuring Bailey and the Baxter family. If you want to start from the very beginning (which is what I would recommend), start with the Redemption series (Redemption, Remember, Return, Rejoice, Reunion), the Firstborn series (Fame, Forgiven, Found, Family, Forever), the Sunrise series (Sunrise, Summer, Someday, Sunset), and the Above the Line series (Take One, Take Two, Take Three, Take Four) before diving into Leaving. BUT Kingsbury does a great job filling in some of the gaps if you want to start with Leaving.
I would highly recommend Leaving or any other book by Karen Kingsbury!
I received a free copy of this book from Zondervan in exchange for my fair and honest review.
About the Book
The Bailey Flanigan series begins with Bailey leaving Bloomington for the adventure of a lifetime. She has won an audition for the ensemble of a Broadway musical in New York City.
She’s determined to take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, but is she really ready to leave family and friends for the loneliness of the city? And what of Cody? His disappearance has her worried about their future and praying that their love can survive. In order to be closer to his mother in jail, Cody takes a coaching job in a small community outside Indianapolis. New friends, distance, and circumstances expose cracks in his relationship with Bailey Flanigan. Love, loneliness, big opportunities, and even bigger decisions highlight the first book in the new Bailey Flanigan series that features members of the popular Baxter family and finally completes the Bailey Flanigan/Cody Coleman story.
New York Times bestselling author Karen Kingsbury is America’s favorite inspirational novelist, with over 15 million books in print. Her Life-Changing Fiction™ has produced multiple bestsellers, including Take One, Between Sundays, Even Now, One Tuesday Morning, Beyond Tuesday Morning, and Ever After, which was named the 2007 Christian Book of the Year. An award-winning author and newly published songwriter, Karen has several movies optioned for production, and her novel Like Dandelion Dust was made into a major motion picture and is now available on DVD. Karen is also a nationally known speaker with several women’s groups. She lives in Washington with her husband, Don, and their six children, three of whom were adopted from Haiti.
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