Friday, May 14, 2010

Review: Crossing Oceans by Gina Holmes

I've been looking forward to Crossing Oceans for awhile now. Gina Holmes is the force behind Novel Journey, a well respected blog for readers and writers both. She's been very open online about her journey towards publication, so when this book was announced, I was eager to see what her writing was actually like!

I thought Crossing Oceans was one of those books about going home and making peace with the ghosts of your past. In my mind, I conceptualized it as a sort of southern fiction novel, which are a bit hit or miss with me. And while it is a story about making peace with your past, it's also very much a story about making peace with your life and your death. It's the story of Genevieve (Jenny) Lucas, a young single mother, who needs to work out the best solution for the care of her daughter before she dies.

While this book is not overtly preachy, I'm not sure that people outside of the Christian faith would understand the choices Jenny made, the reasons why she's estranged from her father, and the pure hope she has in dying without being very familiar with evangelical Christian belief. Having said that, this book is truly beautiful in places, the writing is at times lovely, the affirmation of life and love is inspiring without being saccharine and I shed more than a few tears while I was reading it.

Jenny is not at all perfect. She has major struggles to deal with as she works through her own issues and tries to decide what the best thing for her daughter is. Sometimes she lets selfishness interfere with her decisions, but she definitely grows throughout the book.

I really enjoyed Crossing Oceans. Once again, this is a book about coming to a place of peace with what your life has been and also with dying. It's moving and hopeful and you'll need a box of kleenex if you choose to read it. I definitely look forward to what Gina Holmes does next.

Rating: 4.5/5
Things You Might Want to Know: Christian fiction
Source of Book: Received from publisher for review
Publisher: Tyndale


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