Where Hope Begins by Catherine West - Reviewed

Friday, June 15, 2018

About the Book:

In the aftermath of her husband’s act of adultery and abandonment, Savannah must finally face the ghosts that haunt her and discover for herself whether authentic faith, grace, and ultimate healing really do exist.
When her husband of twenty-one years leaves her, Savannah Barrington believes she’s lost almost everything she’s ever loved. With her daughter in college and her son in boarding school, Savannah retreats to her parents’ lake house in the Berkshires, where hope and healing come in the form of an old woman’s wisdom, a little girl’s laughter, a touch of magic, and a handsome man who’s willing to risk his own heart to prove she’s still worth loving.
But when her husband asks to reconcile, Savannah is faced with the hardest challenge of all: Forgiving the unforgivable. Somehow she must find freedom from the chains of their past and move forward, or face an unknown future without him.

About Catherine West

I’m a grown-up who refuses to grow up. Seriously. Because adulting . . . right?
Alas, most days I have to suck it up and put on my big girl panties and get on with life. I hit my 50’s a couple years back, and I can tell you, it’s no walk in the park. But there’s also a lot of fun going on around me to distract me from the unpleasant moments that hit at this age.

I’m happily married to a wonderful man who loves to cook, (yay me!), and I so appreciate that, because I don’t. I can, but it’s not something I enjoy and I’m always looking for excuses not to!

We’re fortunate enough to live on the beautiful island of Bermuda, where it never snows. My husband originally hails from Canada, where it does snow, and we also own a home in Northern Ontario, where we enjoy retreating to quite often. Even in the snow on the odd occasion.

Somehow between us, we managed to raise two amazing humans. Our daughter is a lifestyle photographer here in Bermuda, she does spectacular work, and she also manages the front desk of my husband’s busy pediatric office, as well as being a wife and new mom. She’s basically superwoman. Her husband is just as busy and impressive, because hello, he’s a firefighter. Thanks to them, we are first time grandparents, which is kind of scary and cool and every feeling in between. We adore (worship?) our beautiful granddaughter and spoil her as often as we can! She is the cutest baby on the planet. Not even kidding. I’m also her part-time care giver, which is lots of fun, and tiring, but mostly fun! 

Our son and his fiancée reside in Boston, where they make musical magic together in a band called The Western Den. We are in love with them and their music. You should check them out. We are so looking forward to watching what the future holds for these two.
Family is everything to me, and I am crazy about mine.
We also have a loveable energetic border collie, Noah, who still thinks he’s a puppy even though he’s 9. I’m dog crazy. I’d have more than one if I could, but life right now doesn’t allow it.
I live for that first cup of coffee in the morning. I love to read, watch movies and sometimes I sing in the shower. I’m slightly sarcastic but I’m told this is an endearing quality. I love Jesus, but I drink a little. Did you laugh?

Good. We’re going to get along just fine.

You can read more about Catherine on her website.

My Thoughts:

Wow! I finished this book a couple of nights ago but I needed to let all of the emotions Ms. West evoked in her story rest for awhile before I could write a legible review. I had to take breaks as I read because the emotions were so raw and genuine.

This book evoked all the emotions. I was Savannah ten years ago, and Ms. West got every emotion that a woman who finds out about her husband's infidelity right on the money. At least for me and other women I know.

Ms. West is one of my favorite Inspirational women's fiction authors because she isn't afraid to tackle tough topics that most Christian's, and loads of churches would rather just sweep under the proverbial rug and never discuss.  Besides dealing with infidelity within a Christian marriage, this book tackles grief, addiction, along with suicide. Each are difficult on their own and quite overwhelming when all put together.

In dealing with issues like these the big questions are is forgiveness possible, and can this relationship be restored? Ms. West shows both the human and spiritual answer. As you read this book you will see undertones of reaping what you sow and how that impacts those around you especially the people you live with day to day. Another undertone is how trying to solve things yourself rather than leaning on God for healing and how that action can and will alienate the one person you love the most. 

My Bottom Line:

This is a definite must read! You may want to stock up on Kleenex before hand, because you will cry and not just teary-eyed the ugly cry.
Ms. West placed the sweetest little girl named, Mayise in the story. Her sweet, bubbly personality just bursts onto the page. I love when little kids show up in books and Mayise is one of my favorites.
This is a book that you will have to take your time reading. Not just because of the raw emotion but because you may miss something.
While Ms. West shows all the raw, and genuine pain, like a composer she produces a melody of redemption, healing, and true forgiveness that will stay with you for a lifetime.
You need to read this book!

Disclaimer: I did receive a copy via the publisher, but I also purchased my own copy.


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