Apr 20, 2011

Promises to Keep

Although I enjoyed Promises to Keep, it took me a while to get into it. Everyone's lives blend together like a patchwork quilt. Looking at only one part of the quilt may look strange, almost ugly. But, if you step back and view the whole quilt, it is a beautiful work of art. That is how I felt reading this book. If I had tried to write a review about it before I got halfway through the book, it would not have been a positive review. But, after stepping back and seeing the book as a whole, I would have to say it was a great book.

The characters are interesting, intriguing, even strange. You have...

Roz - the eleven year old girl whose life changes. She and her siblings have gone from living in the city with her mom and dad to living in a small town with just mom.

Wally - Roz's older half-brother. Wally's dad died in WWII, and his mom married Andy, Roz's dad. Wally hates Andy. But he loves his sisters and tries to keep them protected from Andy when he is drunk.

Valerie - Roz'a two year old sister. Roz helps take care of Valerie.

Janis - Roz's mom. She left her husband after finally getting tired of his drunkenness. She has since moved on, and has started dating someone else, even though her divorce isn't final yet.

Tillie - the elderly woman who used to live in the house Roz's family moved into. Tillie and her late husband had built the house. And Tillie didn't want to leave. It was her dream to die in the house. So, she moves back in; and Janis lets her. Tillie ends up being the "grandmother" of sorts to the children, helping with babysitting, cooking, and cleaning.

Andy - Roz's dad. He finds out where Roz and her family are living, and moves into town. He changes his name to hide his identity, but he secretly meets with Roz. He says he wants to amend things with his wife so they can be a family again.

Mara - Roz's best friend. No one expected Roz and Mara to become friends. In fact, when they first start hanging out, they get looked at funny. When they hold hands while crossing the playground, the other kids just stare. No one expects a white girl and a black girl to be best friends.

Every person in this book has an impact on Roz's young life. The choices that are made, the paths taken, the people met, and the friendships established. Each life is made up of many threads. Ann Tatlock does an excellent job portraying that in her book.


I received this complementary book from Bethany House Publishers in return for my honest review.

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