First, I must thank Bethany House Publishers for providing me with a complimentary copy of Wonderland Creek in exchange for a heartfelt review. Lynn Austin transports the reader immediately to the Depression Era. As the young woman, Alice Ripley, gives a first-person account of her comfortable life to the adventures that await her in Kentucky, you are drawn to her naivete. It's only when she gets to the run-down town of Acorn where she realizes she was living vicariously through all of the books she read. Through the likes of the wise, centenarian Lillie, kind-hearted Mack and the plethora of other characters in Acorn, Alice becomes a woman wanting to live the God-given life she has with the people she loves.
Alice began her journey to donate books to the Kentucky library from the drive she started as a librarian in Illinois. When she lands on the steps of Mack's door, Alice finds herself dizzy and bewildered in Wonderland Creek. Through a set of precarious predicaments and contrived circumstances Alice sees God can work in mysterious ways for the betterment of His beloved. Between Mack's injury, Lillie's wisdom, Maggie's grief and June Ann's tumultuous endurance of motherhood, Alice quickly finds herself involved in their stories and lovingly wanting to help bring the feuding town together again.
Alice's love of reading spoke to me immediately, as an avid reader myself. She mentions her love of words and the smell of a new book- all classic symptoms of a book lover. However, her voracious appetite for the fictitious world proves to be more enticing for Alice than the reality surrounding her. Honestly, I think many people, myself included, can allow things suck the life out of us, as we give more attention to the unimportant. As Alice eyes were opened to her fallacious misconceptions of life, the readers may be too, if they allow themselves introspection a bit. Slowly, but surely, Alice begins to see the possibilities in front of her, rather than through the pages of another dusty volume.
Every page was interesting in itself, yet was a part of an exciting epic. I will warn you, this book is a tad over 380 pages long, but the last half of the book in particular, flew by way too quickly. I immensely enjoyed this story. Wonderland Creek is a beautiful, sometimes a bit unbelievable, adventure geared for the woman that explores human emotions, as well faith in God. I only hope that this book by Lynn Austin will expand your perspective to what lays beyond your viewable horizon.
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