It’s a wonder to behold what happens when love moves in . . .
Former child star Fiona Hume deserted the movie biz a decade ago—right after she left rehab. She landed in Baltimore, bought a dilapidated old mansion downtown, and hatched dreams of restoring it into a masterpiece, complete with a studio for herself.
She would disappear from public view and live an artist’s life.
That was the plan.
Ten years later, Fiona’s huge house is filled with junk purchased at thrift stores, haggled over at yard sales, or picked up from the side of the road. Each piece was destined for an art project . . . but all she’s got so far is a piece of twine with some antique buttons threaded down its length.
She’s thirty-two years old and still recognizable, but Fiona’s money has finally run out. She’s gotten pretty desperate, too, and in her desperation she’s willing to do almost anything for money. Almost. So it is that she comes to rent out the maid’s quarters to a local blacksmith named Josia Yeu.
Josia is everything Fiona isn’t: gregarious, peaceful, in control without controlling . . . in short, happy. As the light from the maid’s quarters begins to permeate the dank rooms of Fiona’s world, something else begins to transform as well—something inside Fiona. Something even she can see is beautiful.
|About the Contributor(s)||Lisa Samson
Lisa Samson is the author of over twenty-five books, including the Christy award-winning novel Songbird. Her novel, Quaker Summer was Christianity Today's novel of 2008. She is coauthor with her husband, Will, of Justice in the Burbs.
|Release Date||Jan 6, 2015|
- Review by Jocelyn
To start off this review, I'd like to clarify that I'm not a huge Christian reader as me being a non-Christian. Despite that, I still would like to try out more of the genre, hence me requesting A Thing of Beauty. Honestly, I quite enjoyed it!
The story is about Fiona aka Fia who was previously an Oscar-winning actress but then quit her job after experiencing something bad. Not having any job, she found herself short on money and was needed to do an interview in order to prove to the whole world that she's doing good. In reality, she was surrounded physically by loads of junks and was unsure what to do with her life. Later she rented out a room and met Josia, an optimistic blacksmith.
It started off unclear and I was immediately thrown into a situation where I know nothing about. Slowly I got to know about Fia's life and her meeting all the people. It's refreshing to read about Fia as I'd never read a book where the main character was once an actress. I liked the plot and the message within it.
I liked the characters but there weren't much background story or character development for the side characters such as Josia. Speaking of Josia, I found him to be too good to be true as if his existence was a miracle. On the other hand, Fia certainly grew a lot throughout the story. She wasn't the most relatable character of all times but she's a character that you'll be willing to root for.
From what I've read from the reviews, people generally gave it a low rating due to the language used as it being a Christian fiction. I have no problem whatsoever with the writing style because it didn't slow me down while reading. The pacing was well-done but it kind of rushed in the later half of the book.
In conclusion, an enjoyable and refreshing reading experience for me. I wouldn't recommend it to Christian readers as it might not be their cup of tea. But still, it's worth my time reading it. (Posted on 2/18/2015)
- Review by Kelly
This is a work of fiction, and it is the first book that I have ever read by Lisa Samson. This book is definitely different than the books I normally read. At first, it didn’t seem to have much of a plot, but I liked Fia, found her to be unique and quirky, and I wanted to see her achieve some happiness or find meaning in her life, so it kept me reading. The story definitely takes you into Fia’s thoughts and her environment. It is filled with good descriptions.
I found the story plot lacking action, but the character was strong and was the focal point of the entire story, so instead of having a plot based on a lot of action and external conflict, the plot was based on the character’s internal conflict, which definitely drew me to wanting to see a change within her. I wanted to see her make good decisions regarding the people in her life, as well as the clutter in her house, and, I think, by the end of the story, the author did a good job of giving me what I wanted. However, I was a bit disappointed when the story ended — not because the story had a bad ending, but because I still wanted more. I wanted to see what would happen to Fia NOW. I would definitely read a sequel if Lisa Samson decided to write one.
I would recommend this novel to anyone who struggles with inner turmoil caused by hurts and betrayals of others in your past. I would also recommend this novel to anyone who loves a story with a well-developed character who takes you on an adventure of self-discovery to find importance in her life. Finally, I would recommend this story to anyone who enjoys reading stories about original, quirky, entertaining characters.
I received a free copy of this book through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. (Posted on 1/5/2015)