Saturday, January 10, 2015

Review of "The Advent Bride"

Review of The Advent Bride

by Mary Connealy

23297278

New--The 12 Brides of Christmas! You're invited to a Christmas wedding...that is twelve of them! Discover the joy of an old-fashioned Christmas romance with these twelve heart-warming stories. Brand-new stories from renowned inspirational fiction authors that take you into the heartland of historical America will releas each week starting October 6. 

#1:The Advent Bride
Melanie Douglas attempts to connect with a troubled student using an advent box with hidden rewards. When Henry O’Keeffe sees a remarkable change in his son, he has to meet the new teacher. Will more than one prayer be answered in the small Nebraska town?

Don't be late! Watch for all 12 stories:
October 6 - #1: The Advent Bride
October 13 - #2: The Nutcraker Bride
October 20 - #3: The Evergreen Bride
October 27 - #4: The Gift-Wrapped Bride
November 3 - #5: The Yuletide Bride
November 10 - #6: The Gingerbread Bride
November 17 - #7: The Nativity Bride
November 24 - #8: The Christmas Tree Bride
December 1 - #9: The Festive Bride
December 8 - #10: The Christmas Star Bride
December 15 - #11: The Snowbound Bride
December 22 - #12: The Fruitcake Bride

...have yourself a Cozy Little Christmas

MY REVIEW:  Imagine teaching in 1875 in a one-room school house in Nebraska in the miserably cold winter and having one very unruly student who attempts to keep everyone in the school from learning.   Teaching is hard enough under the best of circumstances.  I speak from experience, having taught for fourteen years in public school.   Melanie Douglas has a tough living situation in the home of a cranky, rude elderly wealthy lady and then comes to the school to deal with a student who is more than cranky.  Add to that a father who leaves him at the school late in the afternoons and Melanie has a real dilemma.   She finds a box with secrets of its own and it may just be the key to solving both problem of father and son.   Will Melanie and Simon's father work together to correct Simon's behavior?   Will both father and son learn new life lessons from the new school teacher?   
I know that as a modern-day teacher, I did not have to arrive early to heat up the school.  I did not have to rely on a cranky woman to allow me to take small bits of food for my lunch.   I did not have an unpleasant living situation to go home to each night after a day of struggling to manage a serious behavior problem in the classroom.   I felt that Melanie handled the situation admirably.  I rate this book 5 stars and highly recommend it to readers.   
I received a free pdf version of this book from netgalley in exchange for my honest review.  

About the Author:
Mary Connealy

Bio taken from goodreads.com:  
I wrote my first book when I was about twelve. A romance novel. I shudder to think what a twelve year old could know about romance. I have no idea what happened to the manuscript. I suppose my mother found it, and burned it while screaming in horror, but I’ve always been afraid to ask. Was it a hundred pages? Two? I have no idea, but I seem to remember just writing FOREVER! So I’m guessing two pages long at least.

As a new bride I marched straight out of journalism school and into the kitchen, I did a lot of scribbling. I still have those heartbreaking works of staggering genius, Ode to Roast Beef, things like that, all born out of the ‘Write What You Know’ school of literature.

I began writing more seriously when my baby went to kindergarten. Not writing well of course, but just putting words on paper. No one does anything well the first time. I’m sure Babe Ruth missed the first ball pitched to him. I’m sure Picasso smeared pages with paint-y fingers when he was a kid—as I remember he went back to that later in life. I’m sure Beethoven played the eighteenth century version of Chopsticks before went for the sonatas.

My writing journey is similar to a lot of others. Boil it down to persistence, oh, go ahead and call it stubbornness. I just kept typing away. I think the reason I did it was because I’m more or less a dunce around people—prone to sit silently when I really ought to speak up(or far worse, speak up when I ought to sit silently).

So, I have all these things, I want to say, in my head; the perfect zinger to the rude cashier, which you think of an hour after you’ve left the store, the perfect bit of wisdom when someone needs help, which doesn’t occur to you until they solve their problems themselves, the perfect guilt trip for the kids, which you don’t say because you’re not an idiot. I keep all this wit to myself, much to the relief of all who know me, and then I write all my great ideas into books. It’s therapeutic if nothing else, and more affordable than a psychiatrist.

So then a very nice, oh so nice publishing company like Barbour Heartsong comes along and says, “Hey, we’ll pay you money for this 45,000 word therapy session.” That’s as sweet as it gets.

My journey to publication is the same as everyone’s except for a few geniuses out there who make it hard for all of us. And even they probably have an Ode to Roast Beef or two in their past.

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