This is the second Mosaic Anthology I have read. I enjoy collections and anthologies because, although I love long books, there are times when I want short stories, and there is such a variation in writing styles. These anthologies are a good way to read something by an author I have been hearing about, to see if I like their works. Some of the stories in A Whisper of Peace are very good; I didn’t appreciate others. That is to be expected in any collection, however.
The first story in this anthology is Christmas at the Crossroads. This is a short story about two girls who were school friends. One was from a Conservative Christian family, the other was raised by a single mother who had no interest in Christianity or church and the girl knew nothing about the Bible. When both girls got into trouble, how did each one respond? I love the mother in the story and how she handled a child acting up during Bible-reading time.
The Magic of Christmas, as all the others in the collection, is another novella. In this story, an occupational therapist discovers that the young man she is working with is the nephew of a former boyfriend, Dante. When the two accidentally find themselves spending time together helping Luca, what happens? How can they get past past hurts? Will Dante ever be able to get past his need to control people and events?
I liked a lot of A Single Spark of Light. One night on a bridge, a stranger met Tyrone who was thinking about the hopelessness of his life. The stranger sent Ty on a quest in which he ended up having to been forced to think about whether God could possibly love and forgive him. I loved his quest and what he did on it; what I did not like about this story was the sudden jump into romance. It felt like that was there just because a story has to have romance, which I don’t think it does. Another thing I really liked in this book was the way Ty learned that he couldn’t do anything to gain favor with God.
Reclaiming Tomorrow was my least favourite story in this collection. Josie had gotten away from an abusive husband, and run away from a man who was determined to destroy her. She was making a new life for herself and her son when an old threat resurfaced and she had to make herself trust her new friend Daniel and learn to defend herself.
I really liked the last story, Whispered Miracle. In this story, a girl who was aging out of foster care and felt herself abandoned by her only relative, her older brother, was sent to a camp in the mountains. She was dealing with guilt over having accidentally killed her foster mother, and faced an uncertain future alone. Little by little, with the help of an understanding dog and camp staff who accepted her, she started to feel a little ray of hope. I loved the way the story worked out. It felt like something that could easily happen in real life.
I will be looking for more books by Eleanor Burtin, Sarah Davison, and Stacey Monson. I was sufficiently impressed with their stories in this collection, the first I have read by them, to want to read more of what they have written. I also really like the Mosaic Collection and I’m looking forward to reading more books published by them.
I received a review copy of this book from the publisher, and these are my honest thoughts about it.
WARNING: Christmas Magic, chapter 8: kiss. A Single Spark of Light, chapter 2: suicidal thoughts. Chapter 10: kiss. Reclaiming Tomorrow, chapter 9: kiss.
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