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Believe In Me: Sweet and clean Christian romance in London at Christmas (Love In Store Book 2) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 267 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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(Though reviews are inherently subjective, I prefer to provide some organization to my opinions through the use of a personal rubric. The following notes may contain spoilers.)
Plot and Setting: 4 -- Plot is engaging. Has unique elements and no major holes, but a few shaky bits and/or a slight lack of focus. Setting is clear and believable. Timeline may be a bit hard to follow. The dates/dare/publicity stunt events make a cute premise, though there's plenty of deeper emotional issues for our main characters that keeps it from being just a fluffy romance. Some events and internal struggles seemed to be repeating themselves a bit, and there were some minor inconsistencies in the timeline.
Characters: 4 -- Main characters are relatable, realistic, interesting, and dynamic. Some minor characters have depth, while others may be slightly stereotyped or simplified. Definite strong points in the relationships between characters. I appreciated the realism in both Cara and Nick, how they were drawn to each other but resisted showing how they really felt, thanks to their own personal issues. Nick's struggle to be more serious than superficial, and Cara's struggle to let go of her guilt and grief long enough to truly accept joy and love, were both pretty powerful.
Mechanics and Writing: 3.8 -- Scattered typos, punctuation issues, and word errors. (<30/100 pgs) None of the errors seriously hinder understanding. Good use of POV. Generally skillful writing. Errors include: compound word and/or homophone confusion, slightly confusing punctuation or formatting issues, mild typos. Using British expressions is all well and good for a book set in London, but more than once it has British-isms coming from California beach boy Nick, which did not feel right. POV alternates between Cara and Nick.
Redeeming Value: 5 -- Well-developed, central, uplifting themes. Drugs, alcohol, violence, etc, are not glorified at all. No explicit sex scenes. Clear moral guidelines for behavior. Very clean, and they do make a special point to set boundaries for their behavior. Especially given the planned limits of their time together, their care to not take advantage of each other is nice. Does mention some more scandalous rumors, and the harsh reality of suicide and her father's conman actions. Lessons in letting go of guilt, trusting God, and focusing on giving your time and affection at Christmas, not just material gifts.
Personal Enjoyment: 4 -- I liked it a lot. Highly enjoyable and very entertaining, with perhaps an issue or two that tempered my pleasure. I’d enjoy reading it again.
I read the book in just two days having a hard time putting it down. You will need a few kleenexes for this one.
Cara has lived most of her life behind her self-imposed walls; built upon the guilt she believes is her’s to carry. Nick is a go-with-the-flow kind of guy; never taking life too seriously; he is suddenly thrown into a world where life is better when we go beneath the surface.
Both have their readons for avoiding anything serious but neither can stop the course their lives have taken.
Believe in Me shows us that when Satan tries to bury us in guilt and self-condemnation, God is there to pull us out and remind us that He loves us regardless of our mistakes. He offers us grace freely, all we have to do is receive it and believe it is ours.