January 25, 2013

Chasing Rainbows by Kathleen Long

Sometimes you had to wait a little while for the good times to kick in. But when they did, you realized every moment and experience that came before was necessary… necessary to bring you here.
-from Chasing Rainbows by Kathleen Long

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Chasing Rainbows by Kathleen Long is a novel about choosing to put the pieces of your life back together when things seem to have spiraled to a point of no return. Bernadette Murphy’s husband has left her for another woman and her beloved father unexpectedly passes away at the beginning of this book, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg on Bernie’s brokenness. With the help of her family, friends, neighbors and some inspirational cryptograms her father left behind for her, Bernie unscrambles her life and works to put the pieces back together.

The universal theme of being overwhelmed by loss and discouraged by the difficulties of life makes it impossible not to identify with Bernie in some way. Despite her lack of motivation, Bernie is a very likable character and I found myself empathizing and finding more of myself in her than expected.

The most important part of this book to me is how it is very realistic which helped me to trust the author and trust the characters; Bernie faces some huge challenges and deals with a lot of negative emotions from her past that aren’t easily remedied by a quick fix. I appreciate that the author did not deliver any such easy resolution and instead has Bernie examine her emotions and deal with their consequences rather than continue to pack them away.

Bottom Line: This book is light enough to make you crack up laughing, deep enough to make you cry, and inspiring enough to help you reexamine your own choices in life without being cheesy. Great rainy day read. // 3.5/5 stars

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