Thursday, December 27, 2007

Deborah Raney's Within This Circle ~ Reviewed

Within This Circle
By Deborah Raney
Published by Steeple Hill
ISBN-10: 0-373-78594-1

After a tumultuous courtship, John and Julia Brighton have a second chance at happiness. With tragedy behind them and their children grown, they’re looking forward to a new promising era in their lives.

Only, such a promise is never guaranteed. And life can change in a moment.

The Brightons’ lives are turned upside down when John’s daughter Jana abandons her husband, Mark, and three-year-old daughter. John and Julia reach out to young Ellie, to give the young couple time to heal, but how can they help this child, so confused and longing for Mommy? And how much sorrow and stress can both fledgling marriages endure? Two very different couples, each with only their love and faith to guide them, can only pray that it will be enough.


Within This Circle is the long-awaited sequel to A Vow to Cherish. The storyline, although not at all what I thought it would be, was wonderful. She's the consummate storyteller and has never written one I didn’t love. Somehow, she always avoids the expected, the clich├ęd. I was totally caught up in the lives of these people and had to know what happened. I started reading about 9:30 PM Christmas night and forgot about time completely until I turned the last page—somewhere after 2:00 AM.

But then, a Deborah Raney book is like that. She always tackles tough subjects and Within This Circle is no different. Her characters possess multi-layered personalities with good and bad

traits. And they live on in your memory long after you’ve finished the book. As a reviewer, I read 2-3 books a week. After a while, the stories tend to run together, except for the books of a handful of authors. And Raney tops that list.

If you want a great read, I highly recommend Within This Circle.

Reviewed by Ane Mulligan

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