"...Although a work of fiction, author Kelly K. Lavender has given such a realistic feel to her novel that the story holds firmly to an engaging credibility from beginning to end. An especially well crafted and deftly woven story that holds the readers fully entertained attention from first page to last."Midwest Book Review
"The story is fast paced and will keep readers glued till the last page. The mix of love, excitement, suspense and a healthy dose of politics make it a compelling story. Readers feel sympathetic towards Sophie and Ethan and it opens your eyes more towards adoptive parents, adoption outside your country, and the violence in Russia. All characters, including Ethan and Sophie, have been portrayed well to make the story great reading. Apart from the story, the book also opens your eyes on the complications that can arise while adopting from a foreign country." Readers' Favorite
"Sofia and Ethan are apprehensive as they begin their adoption adventure...What they encounter in Russia is worse than they could have feared and pushes them beyond what they thought they could endure.The author does a wonderful job of creating a cast of complex characters who are understandable, if not always likable.The book is difficult to put down, enticing you to read a few more chapters before bed.In the end, the book leaves the reader satisfied, but the story never fully leaves your mind."The US Review of Books
"...This was a totally great read, the descriptive elements in relation to the Russian winter had me almost put a wooly jumper on, I felt cold... It was a great plot and enlightens us into the stress and procedures families have to go through when dealing with adoption, and even more so when it is from a foreign country...Believe me you will be up and down with this book, it's one of those that grip you and will not allow you to put it down..."5* Review by Lillian Flesher of Lilian's Bk Blog
"Can a story about adopting a child be called a thriller... This book seems so real. I have no real idea what adopting a Russian baby is like. I did a little online research because this book seemed so alive; like someone's true experience. Even the suspense was written well enough to make you think you were reading someone's true story. A definite compliment to the author.
This is however, a fiction story of a couple wanting a child so badly that they will do almost anything they are told to be able to adopt this child and take it home to the States. There are many bumps in the road along the way. With no surprise, the experience has an effect on their relationship.
There were some characters in Lavendar's book I liked and some I didn't but then I think that is the sign of an author being very good at character description and development. When Natasha, their caretaker, insists they must stay in the apartment for their safety, the author's description of their time and the discomfort even had me feeling the same anxiety.
I had decided that I was going to describe this as a long book but I don't think that is a correct description. I realized that the tense and suspenseful moments were written so well that the book was not long but rather I was uncomfortable wanting to solve those problems the family had to endure. Another sign of good writing. Definitely a book to read or put on your wish list." Bookaholic
From the Author
Inspired by a true story, Beautiful Evil Winter
stands out as a one-of-a-kind award-winning experience, especially since Russia banned adoptions to Americans years ago.