Reviews

Shine Like the Dawn by Carrie Turansky

yehoshualover's review against another edition

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emotional mysterious sad medium-paced

3.5


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library_of_kindredspirits's review against another edition

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4.0

MY RATING SYSTEM
* "I can't believe this got published!"
** "Mediocre."
*** "It was still missing something."
**** "Good. It satisfied."
***** "Impeccable."

Usually I can tell whether or not I like a book by how long it takes to read. But in this case, I don't think it affected my overall opinion too much. It took me a while to get into the story, and overall it's very slow-paced, but as I got towards the middle I found it easier to sit down and read. I found that once I got used to the pace, I found it refreshing. After reading a couple of fast-paced reads it felt good to slow down and just appreciate the dialogue, and the natural progression of change in the characters.

Carrie Turansky has become a favorite of mine over the last couple of years and I certainly enjoyed this addition to her growing list of novels. The characters underwent changes throughout the story, and the sweet romance plots wrapped up nicely at the end.

Overall, I don't have much to say about the book, however there is one question I have that I think is important to ask. Why is it called Shine Like the Dawn? It's a beautiful title, but after reading the novel, I'm still not sure what the significance of it is. Usually, as I read a book, I will go back to the title, and even the book cover blurb, and I will start to see how they correlate with the actual story. This helps me to make connections in my brain about the story. But even after reading the book, I'm still having a hard time seeing what connects Shine Like the Dawn to the story. If anyone has any ideas on this subject, I'd love to hear them.

In the end, I'm pretty neutral about this book. I definitely preferred some of Carrie's others, but there are no outstanding flaws in the writing, which leads me to believe that someone else might enjoy this as much as, if not more than, the Edwardian Brides series.

melissasbookshelf's review against another edition

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4.0

I enjoyed the audiobook version of this latest Carrie Turansky novel. The narrator really brought each character to life. The setting, mystery, and romance were really good. I sometimes got upset with Maggie and her stubbornness, but liked her character as the story went on.

jazzyjan94's review against another edition

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4.0

This review appears on my blog: https://confessionsofabookwormweb.wordpress.com/2017/02/24/blog-tour-and-giveaway-shine-like-the-dawn/

This is the first book I have read by the author, Carrie Turansky, and I loved it! I love anything to do with the Victorian and Edwardian time periods and this book was great!

First, the plot was fantastic. It was both about redemption and forgiveness, however there was also intrigue and tension throughout the novel that had to be resolved. I loved how it dealt with the growth of industrialism during this time period. There were even certain elements that reminded me of Elizabeth Gaskell's North and South while dealing with this topic. I also liked the mystery that was solved throughout the novel and how it eventually was solved.

I loved the characters in the this novel, except Helen Harcourt because she is just awful the majority of the novel. Maggie was a great character and I enjoyed seeing her wrestle with her doubts about the existence of God after the death of her parents. I also enjoyed getting to know Nate and one fact I enjoyed is that he fought in the Boer War - this is a war that doesn't get mentioned a lot in novels, but having grown up in South Africa and learning about this war it was great to see someone reference it in a novel! :) I also liked that Nate was caring and did what he had to do in order to do what was right. I also liked the other side characters in this novel and how there were several other story lines that were threaded together throughout the novel.

I also appreciated how the novel included references to God without being preachy or even not dealing with Him at all. I thought it was tasteful and definitely showed why this book is considered Christian historical fiction.

I am giving this book 4/5 Stars because I really enjoyed it and I am looking forward to reading more works by Carrie Turansky in the future.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher and CelebrateLit in exchange for my honest review.

adventuresofaliterarynature's review against another edition

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3.0

Overall not a bad read but not my favorite. It started off okay but I found myself having to force myself to finish. The heroine got on my nerves a bit.

meezcarrie's review against another edition

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5.0

This is my favorite Carrie Turansky book yet! (And I’ve enjoyed all her novels) In Shine Like the Dawn, Turansky has quite simply outdone herself with the characters, the setting, and the theme.

I love Maggie as a heroine, in part because of her spirit and personality and in part because she’s not from the wealthy privileged class. She has more strength than she realizes and more faith than she thinks she does. She’s also had to face more loss than anyone should ever have to, especially one so young. Yet despite these tragedies, she remains friendly to everyone – whether wealthy or servant – and keeps a tender heart.

As I’ve mentioned there is a lot of loss that the characters must deal with. But faith and romance are both woven naturally and sweetly through the pain. In fact, Maggie and Nate are my favorite romantic pairing of all of Carrie Turansky’s novels, their childhood friendship simmering into something more is truly delightful and made me smile more than once. Additional romantic subplots in the background of this novel are also quite sweet and add dimension to the supporting characters.

The theme of trusting God with what hurts – with what we don’t understand – is so tenderly conveyed through Maggie’s quest to find out the truth behind her parents’ death. Her grandmother’s wisdom, Nate’s affection, and the Reverend’s insight all work together to form a thread that seamlessly supports the rest of the story with gentle but profound and important truth.

Bottom Line: Shine Like the Dawn is Carrie Turansky’s best novel to date. With a vividly drawn setting, lovable characters, and even a little mystery and historical tension, you will certainly find it difficult to put down once you’ve started reading! The tender message of trusting God with even the most painful parts of our past is sweet and sincere, never preachy, and the romance will steal your breath. It’s a stand alone novel but I for one wouldn’t mind returning to Heatherton for a visit or two, should the author feel so inclined...

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book.)

see my review at Reading Is My SuperPower

betherin02's review against another edition

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4.0

Full review on Faithfully Bookish http://wp.me/p7ngfE-Bn + giveaways through March 6, 2017

Anglophiles and especially fans of Downton Abbey are sure to enjoy Shine Like the Dawn but this novel’s appeal isn’t restricted to its delightful and charming setting. The storyline is an engaging combination of tragedy, mystery, and turmoil sprinkled with sweet recollections of childhood and a budding attraction.

Carrie Turansky brings these authentic characters to life and immerses readers in the culture of Edwardian England’s villages and estates. A message of hope and faith shines through in this entertaining story.

I requested the opportunity to read and review this book through Celebrate Lit tours. The opinions expressed are my own.

michellef's review against another edition

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5.0

`Shine like the Dawn` is a historical fiction novel written by author Carrie Turansky. I am reading and reviewing an uncorrected proof of the novel. The novel is due to be published February 21,2017, Carrie Turansky is an award-winning author of more than a dozen novels and novellas.

The year is 1903, four years after the death of Maggie's mom, dad, and older sister. Maggie thinks it was a set-up and she is planning to find out who-did-it. Maggie and her sister, Violet, stay at their grandmother's house until Nate moves the family into his estate.

The setting of the estate is beautiful gardens, two large lakes, several carriage drives, and myriad stone paths. Birds called from tall evergreens and the sound of rushing water could be heard coming from a nearby stream.

This novel is a must-read for fans of historical fiction with a bit of mystery and suspense.

Disclaimer: "I was provided a free copy of this book. All opinions are my own."

annag77's review against another edition

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2.0

2.5 stars. I feel bad for rating this book low as I really enjoyed the other books that I have read by Turansky. However, I did not particularly like or relate to the main character, Maggie, and it was a little frustrating reading from her POV. She seemed a bit self absorbed, and was quick to whine, judge, or blame everyone else for things throughout most of the story. She didn’t seem particularly kind or have qualities that would make me understand why the H was attracted to her. I liked Nate, who was sweet, but it seemed like he often let others walk all over him. Grandma was a great character though!

melissasbookshelf's review against another edition

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4.0

I enjoyed the audiobook version of this latest Carrie Turansky novel. The narrator really brought each character to life. The setting, mystery, and romance were really good. I sometimes got upset with Maggie and her stubbornness, but liked her character as the story went on.