Emotionally engaging fiction: "A Reason to Stay" by Kellie Coates Gilbert

Cover Art

about the book....

Sometimes the thing that keeps us from making the wrong choice is the one thing we can't control

As an investigative reporter and the host of her own TV talk show, Faith Marin works to expose the truth for her viewers. But in her personal life, she's anchored her world with firm boundaries in order to hide a family history she'd like to forget. By contrast, her husband Geary's life is an open book. An easygoing pro bass fisherman, Geary is the ultimate family man--and his overbearing relatives don't know the meaning of boundaries.

Faith and Geary haven't been married long when their differences start to derail their tender relationship. Surely love shouldn't be this hard. While Faith considers whether divorce is the only answer to their issues, tragedy strikes. With her life in the balance, she finds that the one she has been shutting out may be the very one she cannot bear to lose.

Kellie Coates Gilbert takes you on an emotional roller coaster as she weaves together unexpected trial, self-discovery, and forgiveness in this profoundly honest portrait of the tensions that can break a marriage--and the ultimate healing power of love.

my review....

I greatly enjoyed the first two books in the "Texas Gold" series, and I can safely report that "A Reason to Stay" is every bit as good as those instalments! Once again, Gilbert has created likeable, believable characters that readers will cheer for, admire, and perhaps want to give a good shaking to at the same time. Faith Marin is a character with a real depth beyond the fa├žade she presents to the world, hiding her painful history behind her constant focus on being the best and rising up the ladder at the television station where she is a news anchor. I was not only held in the grip of the plot itself, which had just the right dramatic twists and surprises to keep me glued to the pages (including some surprising moments of humour); I was also caught up in the pain of Faith's marriage, in the extreme loss she experiences after she suffers a horrific incident, and in the discovery she makes about where her true worth lies.

The ending is completely satisfying, just the way I like it, though some readers may argue that things wrap up a tad neatly. But even in that there is a celebration of the fact that miracles do indeed happen! Too often we can get caught up in our pain and a sense of hopelessness and forget that God still has a perfect plan, even in the midst of our struggles. We forget that God is still a God of miracles and always will be. That message in and of itself makes this a story worth reading. And when you read the afterword you will realize that the author has woven much of her own experiences into this story - definitely explaining the very real emotion that charges through every scene.

Fans of contemporary fiction are going to love "A Reason To Stay", because they will identify with the struggles of the characters and walk away with a renewed sense of hope that God can move in their own lives. I highly recommend this book and award it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 

 about the author....

Kellie Coates Gilbert

Kellie Coates Gilbert is a former legal investigator and trial paralegal who investigated the largest cattle fraud case in US history. Her legal experience gives her an insider's view into how people react under pressure. Gilbert explores the complexity of relationships in her emotionally charged stories about women in life-changing circumstances. The author of Mother of Pearl, she currently lives in Dallas, Texas, with her husband. Learn more at www.kelliecoatesgilbert.com.

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