Monday, February 06, 2006

Siri Mitchell's, Beyond the Sky ~ reviewed

Something Beyond the Sky
Siri Mitchell
Paperback, 303 pages
Publisher: Harvest House
ISBN: 0736916377

Reviewed by Cheryl Russell

Something Beyond the Sky follows the lives of four military wives stationed in the South at Bullard Air Force Base. Their unlikely friendships begin when all four sign up for the food committee of the Bullard Officers' Spouses Club.

Anne Bradley is a newlywed and a new college graduate in search of a job. Her degree in public relations isn't much help when prospective employers realize she's a military wife and she'll be around only a few years at best. She's also noticed people react in an odd way to her when they hear her name, but she can't figure out why.

Married to Kevin for seven years, Karen Bannister struggles with infertility. Her husband requested the transfer to the South to get them out of Utah and the questions that surround this childless Mormon couple. But the pressure to conceive is more than Karen can cope with and she begins a slide toward anorexia.

Beth Bennett is an Air Force Academy graduate. She resigned her commission to stay at home when her twins were born, a decision she now regrets. She feels guilty over her longing to return to work and questions her commitment to motherhood.

Rachel and pilot RJ Hawthorne couldn't have come from more different worlds. She is from old money and runs the family business. RJ grew up on a Montana ranch. Rachel thinks Tokyo is a perfect vacation spot, but RJ takes her camping in the Smokies instead.

But her wealth and power, which have served her well over the years, can't help when her marriage seems to disintegrate before her eyes.

There are a few bumps in the story. A few point of view switches are a little jarring, but not enough to jolt the reader out of the story. The large chunks of conversations between Anne, a Christian, and Karen, a Mormon, were a bit overwhelming at times. But Siri does a good job with Karen's struggle with her religion and the high cost it demands of those who leave.

Something Beyond the Sky is a good read for those who enjoy contemporary women's fiction.

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