Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Book Review: Hope's Journey by Stephanie Connelley Worlton

When Sydney discovers she's pregnant, all her hopes and dreams go up in smoke.  Her boyfriend, Alex, was planning to serve a mission, but now that's out of the question for him, too.  Shaken by the consequences of what they've done, Sydney and Alex break up, and they each go on a path of self-discovery as they analyze what led them down their path and try to decide where to go from here.

Hope's Journey isn't your typical Mormon-girl-gets-pregnant story.  We see the events through both Sydney and Alex's eyes, and hear the thoughts that are going through their heads as they try to come to terms with the dramatic change their lives have gone through.

I did wish this book had done two things:  first, we start the story after Sydney has gotten pregnant, but just before she finds out.  I would have liked to see a little more about how these two kids went down the road to temptation.  What were the choices they made along the way that determined their outcome?  I think teen readers could benefit by reading this story and saying, "Oh, look - they're spending a lot of time together alone" or "Wait, they shouldn't be in her bedroom alone" or what-have-you.  It's a long series of small choices that lead to pregnancy, and if teens can stop that series before it starts, they can save themselves a lot of grief, and fiction is a great way to show that.

I also wished that we had seen a little more of the pregnancy itself.  I wanted to be more involved in the aches, pains, swelling feet, etc.  What can I say - I like cautionary tales, and I wanted this to be just a little more cautionary.

Overall, I enjoyed the book.  I felt it was well written, the characters were real, they each underwent a lot of growth throughout the book, and while I did want to wring Alex's neck a couple of times, he did straighten up in the end and become someone I could cheer for.  But seeing as how this novel is based on a true story, maybe I shouldn't say that, because I don't want the real Alex to be mad at me ...

You can purchase Hope's Journey here.

Or ... if you like, you can enter to win it by leaving a comment in the trail.  Be sure you're a follower of this blog, and then just tell me why you'd like to win the book.  I will randomly select a winner, and notify you if you are the one.  This giveaway will go until Friday night at midnight Mountain time, so be sure to leave your comment before then.

8 comments:

Jaclynweist said...

I'd love to win this book because I'm a mother of six children and someday I'm going to have to worry about things like this.

Tamera Westhoff said...

I'd love to win this book, because I have four girls and I LOVE cautionary tales!

Tamera Westhoff said...

I would love to win, because I have four girls and LOVE cautionary tales!

Lolawid said...

I would love to win this book because I don't have enough LDS books for my daughters to read!! Thanks!

Tarrah said...

I'd love to win this book because my hubby already gave me my Christmas present (a month early)...it was a lawn mower. I deserve something 'girly', right? :-)

Sheila said...

I always love to read a good book. I would like this one to read with the teen-age daughter then to talk about it together. :)

Leigh Covington said...

I like to see an LDS book covering stuff like this. It can happen to anybody. It sounds very interesting, but I agree, that I would like to see some of the things you mentioned that they kept out. It might be hard to approach, but I think it would be good for teens to see what to "avoid!"

Robin said...

I'd like to win this book because I have a teen. She hasn't started dating yet and I think this would be a great book for her to read before she starts dating.

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