Title: A Broken Kind of Beautiful
Author: Katie Ganshert
2014, Waterbrook Press
Genre: Contemporary Christian Fiction
Sometimes everything you ever learned about yourself is wrong.
Fashion is a fickle industry, a frightening fact for twenty-four-year-old model Ivy Clark. Ten years in and she's learned a sacred truth - appearance is everything. Nobody cares about her broken past as long as she looks beautiful for the camera. This is the only life Ivy knows - so when it starts to unravel, she'll do anything to hold on. Even if that means moving to the quaint island town of Greenbrier, South Carolina, to be the new face of her stepmother's bridal wear line - an irony too rich for words, since Ivy is far from the pure bride in white.
If only her tenuous future didn't rest in the hands of Davis Knight, her mysterious photographer. Not only did he walk away from the kind of success Ivy longs for to work maintenance at a local church, he treats her differently than any man ever has. Somehow, Davis sees through the facade she works so hard to maintain. In fact, it seems that everyone Ivy comes across in Greenbrier challenges what she as come to believe about beauty and worth. Is it possible that God sees her - a woman stained and broken by the world - yet wants her still?
What an amazing book! I wasn't really sure I was going to enjoy this book after reading the back cover, but this book kept my attention all the way through! And isn't the cover beautiful?
This is a contemporary novel set in South Carolina. The author did a wonderful job of giving me an idea of the landscape without it detracting from the story itself. The story is told from the POV of Ivy, Davis and occasionally Marilyn, Ivy's stepmom.
This book is full of twist and turns. There are some great secondary characters. Marilyn, whose husband had an affair and fathered a child (Ivy) with that "other woman". Marilyn is childless herself and causes a great conflict between everyone when Ivy shows up. Then there is Davis's sister, Sara. Sara had an accident several years ago that left her blind. Despite her injury, Sara is a wonderful example of a woman of faith and is able to share that with Ivy when the two become friends. Then there is Bruce - Ivy's agent. Through those scenes are when the reader gets a glimpse of the cut-through fashion world.
I don't want to give away too many details, but I would like to say that this book felt very realistic to me. The thoughts and emotions the characters expressed did not feel contrived. They all had hurts and different ways of dealing with them. Each a a different kind of relationship with God.
There was also some mystery to each of their lives that the author very gently unraveled as the story went on. I found myself looking forward to discovering what each of them was hiding or how something was going to work out in the end.
This is my second book I've read by this author and I think she has me hooked. I would probably read anything she published at this point.
Release Date: April 15, 2014
Read Chapter One
Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from Waterbrook Press through the Blogging for Books program for my honest review. No other compensation was received and all thoughts and opinions are strictly my own.