Thursday, February 20, 2014
Book Review: The House at Rose Creek by Jenny Proctor (Whitney Finalist 2013)
Author: Jenny Proctor
Enjoyment Rating: ***
This book would be rated: PG
Kate Sinclair was content with her life in Atlanta. Her job was busy, but satisfying, and her boyfriend helped her pass the time. But when the aunt who raised her dies and Kate inherits the family farm, she has to take a temporary leave from her life in Atlanta to get things settled in the small town in North Carolina where she grew up. Unfortunately, Kate soon learns that the home is slated for demolition, and it becomes her personal mission to prevent that from happening, while righting some wrongs in her personal life. As she searches more deeply into her family's story, she finds herself completely enthralled with family history, which leads her to the Mormons (and away from life in Atlanta), which leads her to make some big changes in her life.
I think that Proctor is a good writer who knows how to create characters, keep readers interested, and work with conflicts. I really thought that the story of Kate's family history was fascinating. However, I'm not sure about how I feel about this turning into a conversion narrative. If the book is written for a general, non-LDS audience, would they feel manipulated by the turn the story takes? If the book is written for an LDS audience, then would the conversion narrative be interesting to someone who is, theoretically, already converted? I thought that part of the story was less compelling than the rest of the story.