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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Sweet Rest by Joann Carter

Sweet Rest by Joann Carter
Publisher: White Rose Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Inspirational
Heat: Sweet
Length: Short (84 pages)
Rating: 3.5 Books
Reviewed by Snapdragon

Soft spoken, twenty-eight-year-old Mike Anderson prepares to join his brother on a short-term mission trip to Florida. Here he plans on helping build new facilities for New Hopes Mission Agency. However, before he leaves, Mike learns there was an accident at the building site. Now the person who was injured is missing. Could these two incidents be mere coincidence or is something more sinister at work?

And then there is the five-two spit-fire, Leah Rizzo, with whom he agreed to swap photography projects. Taking her with him could prove to be the colossal mistake of his lifetime—or perhaps God has a plan even in the midst of the mystery that shrouds the project.

Joann Carter’s ‘Sweet Rest’ is an interesting, active and almost topsy-turvy story. Best thing about it? It is an engaging story of regular people with an opportunity for love.

Mechanic Mike remembers Leah Rizzo as a beautiful high school teen, but that was a decade ago. The high school reunion before him hardly seems worthwhile; Leah, from her looks to her career is too intimidating. And, it’s not like there aren’t a lot of other, confusing things going on, at the same time. Mike has commitments, including his mission work… or is that all just excuses?

Leah can certainly claim time commitments as well… yet the old gang appears to matter to her. She runs into some strange side distractions as well. We begin to wonder just where this is going… can they even commit enough time to meet?

Additionally, as one of the characters says, “Too many weird things going on here.” Although there is something to be said for the unpredictable and also for clever resolutions, it’s a busy short story, with a big cast of characters and a whole lot of different, if minor, incidents which can be a bit confusing to keep up with.

The highlights of this story are the emotional ups-and-downs of the characters. Their interaction, as well as their prayers, are always revealing. I missed the development of attraction – and even love – between the two main characters, although each individual character seemed admirable. This story is quirky, unpredictable, and very readable.