Psalm 27:1

The Lord is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Invention of Sarah Cummings Book Review

Avenue of Dreams Series
Book Three

SUMMARY:  In a world where everyone is putting on a show, there is a love that is genuine.
     Sarah Cummings has one goal in life - to break into Chicago's high society.  Desperate to stop serving dinner to members of the wealthy Banning family and to start eating at society tables, Sarah spends her meager free time altering cast-off gowns to create the perfect wardrobe for her future life.
     When opportunity knocks at a chance meeting, she presents herself as Serena Cuthbert, weaving a fictitious past to go with her fictitious name.  But as she gets closer to her goal - and closer to Simon Tewell, director of St. Andrew's Orphanage - Sarah finds that she must choose between the life she has and the life she dreams of.
     Can she piece together the perfect life from scraps?  Or will it all come unraveled in the face of true love?

REVIEW:   Sarah Cummings is tired of being a maid and wants something better in life.  She is an excellent seamstress and reworks the dresses given to her by Mrs. Banning, making them into completely different gowns.  She also wants to forget her time at the local orphanage, where she spent time after her parents were tragically killed, but she is asked to show the girls there some basics of sewing in hopes of expanding their futures.
     This book was good but I had a few problems with it.  The main problem was Sarah's faith, or lack thereof.  Throughout the second book (where she is a minor but important character) and in parts of this book, Sarah is resentful that she is forced to work as a maid instead of living in the middle class she was born and raised into.  She is resistant to God and recognizing His hand in her life and only goes to church when she needs to, not when she wants to.  Her lack of faith in God aids in her deception as Serena Cuthbert in that she may have some qualms in what she is doing but it does not stop her from continuing the charade.  At the end of the book, when Sarah's secret is found out by those who care about her, she does seem repentant but I still didn't see an obvious turn to faith in God.
     The other problem I had was all the lying and deceiving going on.  Since it was a major part of the story, I understand why it took place, but it still bothered me.  I guess I get too much into my characters and don't want to see them get hurt if they continue on the path they are taking.
     Overall, this is a good book and ties up the series in a nice way.

This book was provided by Revell for review without compensation.

Olivia Newport is the author of The Pursuit of Lucy Banning and The Dilemma of Charlotte Farrow.  Her husband and two twentysomething children provide welcome distraction from the people stomping through her head on their way into her books.  She chases joy in stunning Colorado at the foot of the Rockies, where daylilies grow as tall as she is.  Find out more at

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