Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Her Daughter's Dream by Francine Rivers

Dear Francine Rivers - I love you. Please do not wait so long to write another book. K, thanks bye.

Her Daughter's Dream was the sequel to the Her Mother's Hope which I had read last May. Usually when I pick up a hefty sized book I get a bit nervous that it will take me forever to get through it. But with Francine, the more pages the better, because I don't want her stories to ever end. She is hands down THE best Christian writer out there and more versitile than anyone I know of. She can write historical fiction, current fiction, Christmas stories, novellas... pretty much anything and I have read and loved every single one.

This series takes the reader through 4 generations of women starting around WWII and ending through 2004. The first book was quite heavy and could even seem disheartening at the struggle of relationship between Marta, her parents and then her own daughter Hildermara. But really, Francine was only setting the stage for the redemption and growth to take place in the next generations of the second book. I thought her writing demonstrated so well what we often aim for generationally in wanting to learn from our parents mistakes and grow in the midst of our own, so that we can set up the next generation for even more growth & success. And at the same time, this 2 book saga also depicts so clearly how if we are not careful to recognize the unhealthy patterns of ourselves we can too easily pass them down to the next generations as well.

I appreciated that Francine Rivers included a three page note at the end of Her Daughter's Dream explaining how the inspiration of this series came from experiences in her own life and the women in her family.

Description: In the dramatic conclusion to Her Mother’s Hope, the Cold War has begun and Carolyn is struggling to navigate her shifting family landscape and the changing times. With her mother, Hildemara, away in a tuberculosis sanatorium, Carolyn develops a special bond with her Oma Marta. But when Hildie returns, tensions between she and Marta escalate, and Carolyn feels she is to blame. College offers the chance to find herself, but a family tragedy shatters her independence. Rather than return home, she cuts all ties and disappears into the heady culture of San Francisco. When she reemerges two years later, more lost than ever, only her family can help rebuild a life for her and her daughter, May Flower Dawn. Just like Carolyn, May Flower Dawn develops a closer bond with her grandmother, Hildie, than with her mother, causing yet another rift between generations. But as Dawn struggles to avoid the mistakes of those who went before her, she vows that somehow, she will be a bridge between her mother and grandmother rather than the wall that separates them forever. Spanning the 1950s to the present day, Her Daughter’s Dream is the final chapter of an unforgettable epic family saga about the sacrifices every mother makes for her daughter—and the very nature of unconditional love.

Rating: *****

Recommend: To everyone, but especially the daughters who've struggled in the relationships with their own mom.

Update on Fall Into Reading Challenge 2010:
Her Daughter's Dream by Francine Rivers
Black Rain by Graham Brown
Night Road by Kristin Hannah
Moonlight Mile by Dennis Lehane
Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks
Best Friends Forever by Jennifer Weiner
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski
The Possibility of Everything by Hope Edelman (added to challenge)
Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins (added to challenge)

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