Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Behind Her Smile (Rosemary Hines) Book Review

2016 Reading Challenge

32. Behind Her Smile by Rosemary Hines

Not good enough…the words echo in Madison Baron’s mind as the darkness presses her to be thinner, more beautiful—somehow more attractive to her peers. A junior in high school, she is facing life without her childhood love, Luke Johnson, who is off to college in the Midwest. Alone with her insecurities, Madison yearns for acceptance—until Miles that is. Will a relationship with this new student on campus be the answer she seeks? And how will his resistance to her Christian faith affect her future?
As the two of them grow closer and closer, something happens inside of Madison, and she finds herself more insecure than ever. Gazing into the mirror at her thinning face and trendy makeup, she hopes no one sees the fear behind her smile.

My Review:
This was my favorite book in the Sandy Cove series. It covers an issue that's relatable to the female population, particularly those girls in their pre-teen and teenage years: not being good enough. And if you're older and reading this, like myself, I think we can understand the issues that Madison goes through in this story because we've been there.

Madison is at the forefront of this particular book. I was so happy to see that because she's grown up throughout the series. It was nice to hear her voice come out finally. Madison is 16 and like most teenagers, she doesn't think she looks thin enough, not attractive enough. For the first time in her life, she's on her own, as Madison's childhood friend and love of her life is away at college. She's looking for acceptance and respect from her peers. When Miles enters the picture, she thinks she found what she's looking for. Her beliefs and morals are put to the test as she embraces a relationship with Miles. He dares her to go outside of her limits and comfort zone.

Complicating things is that Madison's parents can't seem to connect with her. And that Madison is going through teenage rebellion, so to say. This leads to a lot of arguing/disagreements with them, especially her mom. When Madison does something she never thought she would by having sex with Miles, she beats herself up about it. Not knowing what to do and not able to talk to her mom, Madison runs away to her grandmother's house. Over the course of a few days, she finally feels she can open up about it with her grandmother's help. It takes some time before Madison can approach her mom (as she feels her mom's going to be hurt and disappointed in her). She doesn't expect her mo to react the way she thinks. Everything gets sorted out and then Luke comes back for the summer. It's clear that Madison and Luke should be a couple, but Madison doesn't believe she's worthy enough for him. What happens between them is left up in the air as the book ends with them having a much needed conbersation, but we don't find out if they get together.

This is a story about forgiveness and redemption. Madison has to learn how to forgive herself for her mistakes and realize that mistakes do happen and Moody's perfect. Things don't always go according to plan and sometimes certain things just happen and that's okay. When it comes to God, He doesn't expect us to be perfect either. But He does want us to ask for forgiveness - that's the point of confession/penance/reconciliation and absolution. 

This is book 6 of the Sandy Cove series. I'm also going to point out that I think they should be read in order. As of this writing, this is the last book in the series, as I'm not sure if Rosemary Hines is planning to continue on with it or not. To read my other reviews for this series, click the links below:

Out of a Dream
Through the Tears
Into Magnolia
Around the Bend
From the Heart

Happy Reading and Keep On Writing!


1 comment:

  1. Oh, I think there'll be another book. If the author left things up in the air, there has to be another book so you can find out what happened to these two (if only in a peripheral way).