A couple of weeks ago, I received an email from my blogging friend Kari with the title Sharing my Joy… I knew Kari’s novel, The Life I Dreamed, had been published!

Kari and I both took the NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) challenge last November. We had to write a novel of 50 000 words in 30 days. Even before the month was over, we’d both reached our goal and were proclaimed NaNoWriMo winners. Then Kari did something I didn’t. She went on to edit and fine-tune her novel while mine is still sitting in a file on my computer waiting for attention…

Kari told me a little about the theme of her book and I couldn’t wait to read it. So as soon as Kari’s email arrived, I headed off to the Kindle store and purchased a copy.

This is the Amazon book description of Kari Burke’s The Life I Dreamed:

Motherhood is a gift.
Children are a blessing.
Marriage is a sacrament.

Emmy O’Brien knows all that. There was even a time she fought to promote those very values and beliefs. After having four children in rapid succession though, the demands of home and family have blurred her strong convictions. Tired, overwhelmed, and dissatisfied much of the time, she struggles each day to meet the needs of those around her. When her husband receives a phone call from a 16 year old girl, unexpectedly pregnant and suddenly homeless, Emmy’s world is turned upside down and she must now decide, are her old-fashioned values and beliefs still worth fighting for?

Doesn’t that sound worth reading? I couldn’t wait to begin.

From page one I was engrossed in the story of Emmy O’Brien. I won’t tell you the plot. There is enough of a hint in the Amazon description. Any more would just spoil the story for you. I will say all the characters are thoroughly believable. They came alive for me. I cared about what happened to them and so I kept clicking pages, not wanting to put my ereader down. How was the book going to end? It didn’t take me long to find out. I can’t share the ending of course! All I can tell you is this: I was left with a warm satisfied feeling. 

And now I am hoping Kari will write another novel!

Kari, November is not that far away. How about taking up another NaNoWriMo challenge?

I know I am useless at writing book reviews but I hope you sense my enthusiasm and excitement over Kari’s novel.

If you'd like to read an entertaining story with strong Catholic themes, please share Kari Burke’s novel, The Life I Dreamed. It is available from Amazon as a paperback book or Kindle ebook.

And please visit Kari’s blog Overflow.

Post a Comment

  1. This looks like a great book, Sue! I'm so impressed that Kari wrote it in a month - with young children, too. Thanks for the links:-)

    God bless:-)

    1. Vicky,

      You will enjoy this book. Everyone, who knows what is like to cope with young children and all the duties of being a wife and mother, will relate to this story. Kari's characters are so realistic and believable.

      Yes, Kari has lots of young children and she still managed to write a novel. If we really want to do something, there is always a way... Kari has inspired me to finish my own novels!

      Thank you for your comment!

  2. I keep seeing the NaNoWriMo mentioned...going to have to take a look once this house mess is finished!

    Is this book your friend wrote faith-based or general fiction?

    1. Angela,

      The main month for NaNoWriMo is November. It was a lot of fun. There are forums and pep talks but I didn't really get involved in those. I just wrote and entered my word count into the meter every day and enjoyed watching it go up and up... It was a great feeling reaching 50 000 + and knowing I had a draft form of a novel written. I guess the whole idea of writing so quickly is I didn't procrastinate. I had to find time and the words, and I did! All my girls did NaNoWriMo last November too. The older two did the adult's version. The younger ones did the children's challenge.

      There are also two camp NaNoWriMo months. The next one is in August. Imogen and Charlotte are getting ready for that. They did the last camp a couple of months ago. Script Frenzy is similar. A few months ago, the girls all spent a month writing a script.

      I guess Kari's novel could be called faith-based fiction. I think most mothers could relate to the situation of the main character: is this the life I dreamed of? I am just a mother, this is hard and I've lost my sense of joy...or something along those lines. There are Catholic themes to the story. It's a novel that celebrates life, children and family. I enjoyed it!

      Thank you for stopping by!

  3. Sue -

    The NaNoWriMo sounds up my alley! Maybe I'll be ready in time for the November version :)

    I've been thinking a lot this week about the questions you mention in the fiction novel. I'm going to add it to my wishlist now!


    1. Angela,

      Let me know if you do NaNoWriMo in November. We could encourage each other along! You don't need to prepare ahead of time. That's the fun of it: not knowing what is going to appear on the screen once we get into creative mode!

  4. The book sounds like something I'd love to read - I'll have to check it out. You should dig your novel out and get it published!!

    1. Dana,

      You will enjoy Kari's book!

      I am working on a couple of novels. Ellen edited the first one for me. I have almost finished the revisions. Then Ellen is going to coach me through the self publishing stage!! I will get there... Thank you for your encouragement.


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