Tuesday, January 1, 2019

REVIEW of True Places by Sonja Yoerg

Kindle Edition
Expected publication: January 1st 2019 by Lake Union Publishing

A girl emerges from the woods, starved, ill, and alone…and collapses.

Suzanne Blakemore hurtles along the Blue Ridge Parkway, away from her overscheduled and completely normal life, and encounters the girl. As Suzanne rushes her to the hospital, she never imagines how the encounter will change her—a change she both fears and desperately needs.

Suzanne has the perfect house, a successful husband, and a thriving family. But beneath the veneer of an ideal life, her daughter is rebelling, her son is withdrawing, her husband is oblivious to it all, and Suzanne is increasingly unsure of her place in the world. After her discovery of the ethereal sixteen-year-old who has never experienced civilization, Suzanne is compelled to invite Iris into her family’s life and all its apparent privileges.

But Iris has an independence, a love of solitude, and a discomfort with materialism that contrasts with everything the Blakemores stand for—qualities that awaken in Suzanne first a fascination, then a longing. Now Suzanne can’t help but wonder: Is she destined to save Iris, or is Iris the one who will save her?

My Thoughts…

I love the lessons in this book. 

 Iris has lived a truly sheltered life.   She never has ridden in a car, had running water, been around people other than her family, kills what she eats, and is very much alone.       Suzanne finds her sick on the side of a road and instantly I could feel both their lives change.   Iris has to adjust to other people, a hospital, and a society where things move fast, people are everywhere, and technology is the norm.      Suzanne finds that she wants more from her life and Iris is just the way to help her accomplish it, although that is now what the thought was from her first meeting of Iris. 

Suzanne has lived a privileged life, from her parents raising her without her needing for any material things to her husband who worships and loves her completely.    When Iris comes in she realizes that she has just been a caregiver for her unappreciative kids and her selfish husband.   She needs more to life and her eyes are opened to what is important.   It is a struggle to change your ways without losing those you care about and Suzanne has to figure out how to be strong and stand up for herself.  

I was intrigued by Iris.   There was a big need to know more about her.   How can she have no family?    How can she possibly have been so far off the grid?  Can she learn how to live in today's world?     The relationship between Suzanne and Iris was just the start of what she was going to have to adjust to after being forced to come literally out of the woods into the real world.  Maybe she accepts things told to her too easily, especially when Brynn was involved, but I felt that Sonja Yoerg did an amazing job taking it slow and easy with Iris, letting her way turn into a way to still be.    

I walked away from this book looking at my life.   Seeing how some of the busy work I do isn’t necessary, that letting my family take some responsibility for themselves isn’t a bad thing, and that if I don’t take time for myself it would be easy to lose who I want to be.    

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