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Ratings and Reviews (5 12 star ratings
5 reviews
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4.3 out of 5
12
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  • 2 person found this review helpful

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    This is an incredible historical romance.

    I absolutely loved this book. It is filled with a lot of marvelous characters that are extremely well developed. I love both Grace Mabry and Jack Benningham. It was a joy to uncover each and every aspect of their personalities. It was equally enjoyable to see their growth throughout the story. The progression of the story was fascinating. I was captivated by it before the end of chapter one. It had a number of great twists that caught me off guard, including a couple of major surprises near the end of it. I really enjoyed learning about the Women’s Forage Corps in England during WWI. This is a time period that I really don’t know very much about. I like learning more history in the midst of reading my fiction books. I really appreciate all the time and effort that authors such as Kate Breslin put into writing their novels to make them historically accurate. I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.
  • 2 person found this review helpful

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    Faith and Courage in Difficult Times

    Kate Breslin's newest historical novel is definitely a winner! Not By Sight gives the reader a fresh understanding of the severity of World War I on the British homefront. The severity that brings to light the devastation and losses of war--loss of limb, livelihood and often life. Breslin softens this ugliness of war with a budding romance, fraught with conflict and a little comedy, and with beautiful descriptions of the English countryside. Readers learn of the work of the Women's Forage Corps, espionage, costume balls for the Red Cross Society, tea rooms, and the inevitable bombings of cities. Grace, a naive suffragette, opens Pandora's box of heartache when she unwittingly hands a white feather of cowardice to Jack, a well-known objector to the war. Readers will be captivated at the climactic twists and turns of the far-reaching effects of that initial episode in Not By Sight. Through her various and colorful, yet realistic characters, Breslin weaves a story of friendships, faith, and forgiveness. A story where lives are restored and hearts are mended. A story of courage and sometimes, foolhardiness. A story of learning to live by faith. I received a complimentary copy of Not By Sight in exchange for an unbiased review.
  • 2 person found this review helpful

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    Not by Sight

    Oh, I cannot tell you how much I had been eagerly anticipating reading this book! And now here it is, release day, and I get to tell you just how hard I fell for this story. This post is my release day celebration of sorts. Even though it’s not my book to celebrate about (obviously), I have been a huge fan of Kate Breslin ever since I first read her debut novel—For Such a Time—and have been sitting on the edge of my seat as I waited for the chance to read this book. Let me say, Kate did not disappoint. Although this novel was almost completely different from her first when it came to the plot and characters, her incredible writing talent was just as evident. She wove every element to this story together perfectly, and her WWI facts were just as impeccable as they were interesting. This story captured my heart from the very first page, carried me away into WWI England, and surprised me with each and every plot twist, though I can say I figured out the little bit of the mystery at the end. I absolutely love Grace Mabry. I am very confident that if we were of the same world, we would be the best of friends. There are some things about her, like her desire to help her friends and keep them from harm, that remind me so much of myself, while at the same time she has some qualities, such as her boldness that lets her act without fear of anyone else’s reaction, that I long to emulate. Her kindness and generosity are very admirable, especially when paired with her somewhat short temper and slight lack of patience, as they balance each other in a way that makes for an extremely lovable character. Plus, her story was absolutely wonderful. Especially the parts with Jack. Oh, Jack. Words cannot do him justice. Despite the somewhat displeasing image that is painted by the description, Jack Benningham is by far one of my absolute favorite heroes. Maybe even one of the top ten. Even though he faces so much heartbreak throughout this book, he is not so full of bitterness that he loses his goodness, his compassion, his fight. And I cannot tell you in words just how much I love the way he and Grace interact. Not only did they have the “at first sight” sizzle that makes for so many good romances, but the rest of their relationship was forged through friendship, through all the time they spent together. Always the perfect gentleman—albeit a little rough on the edges—Jack’s real feelings constantly shine through everything he does for Grace, even when they might not be on the best of terms. He truly does know how to be a knight in shining armor, and watching him grow and change was priceless, and just made me fall in love with him even more. Another thing I loved about this book was the theme of “Not by Sight.” Everyone in this world faces blindness in their life, whether it is physical blindness, mental blindness, or blindness in their relationship with Christ. Kate does a wonderful job of weaving those aspects into her story and showing us how one can overcome them. With each page, she teaches her readers a valuable lesson without ever once making it seem like one. Rather, it is just a byproduct of being immersed in Grace and Jack’s story, and is part of what makes it so memorable. Once again, I applaud her for creating characters who change throughout her novel. Something else that is a major part of this book is the many secrets that everyone holds. Every single character, or at least close to it, holds a secret unknown to others that makes life in Roxwood just a little more difficult than it would have been otherwise. Add that to the many instances of espionage, and you’ve got a bit of a mystery on your hands. I absolutely love how everyone’s secrets come to light, one way or another, but especially how Grace was such a mentor to her friends in the WFC. Each of the girls on their team held something back, and I loved watching how, one by one, Grace helped make each of their burdens lighter. Her compassion is enviable, and it just goes to show how valuable good friendships can be. Considering the fact that at the very beginning Grace was treated as a complete outcast—which I should have expected since that usually happens when you put five young women under the same roof—it is obvious to anyone who reads this story that Grace has an outstanding amount of patience and grace (fitting huh?) that leads her to make a difference in her friends’ lives. I received a copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review.
  • 2 person found this review helpful

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    Not By Sight by Kate Breslin

    Why I chose this title… Last summer I read Kate Breslin’s debut novel For Such a Time with the ladies of my Christian book club. It generated so much conversation and the story was so rich that I have anticipated the release of Not by Sight since last June. Well, it’s here–and it was worth the wait! My Thoughts For her sophomore novel, Breslin has chosen to immerse her readers into a story of romance and espionage. The year is 1917, London is in the midst of the Great War with many young men valiantly serving in the war effort. At home, women patriots are doing their part by serving in the Women’s Forage Corps and the Women’s Land Army. It’s grueling work, but they hope their service to king and country will hasten the end of the war. A few conscientious objector “conchies” remain, who refuse to heed the call to arms. For example, Jack Benningham becomes the target of Ms. Gracy Mabry, whose move to publicly shame Benningham by giving him a white feather of cowardice sets off a sequence of irreversible and life altering events. I found the character Grace to have a luminescent inner beauty which radiated into the lives of others. As I learned more about Grace, a multitude of bible verses about women living out our Christian faith came to mind such as 1 Peter 3:3-4, John 13:35, and 1 John 3:18 to list a few. Like all believers, her faith does not preclude her from making mistakes. In fact, her naiveté was both her greatest strength and an unfortunate weakness. Unlike For Such a Time, which gave readers a front row seat to wartime atrocities, this book follows the war from a much safer distance. I find that it rests more heavily on the interpersonal relationships of the characters and less on the historical intrigue that won me to the author initially. Regardless, the book possessed exquisite imagery as well as a precious cast of characters, making it delightfully entertaining selection. Not by Sight proved to be another book club worthy title by Breslin. It’s sure to stir up plenty of group conversation about friendships, forgiveness, misperceptions and betrayal. 4.5stars ** I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.**
  • 2 person found this review helpful

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    A riveting period piece of mystery & romance

    There are certain defining moments in life when you come across that one book whose story is so tangible that you find yourself hopelessly lost in it. Books such as these are what one might call "a diamond in the rough" or a classic. What is it about them that makes them so special? Let me tell you why Kate Breslin's newest release, Not By Sight, falls into that category. Not By Sight is a riveting story set in England during the rise of WWI. Grace Mabry and Jack Benningham, our main protagonists, lives become inevitably entangled because of a simple choice that opens a Pandora's box of troubles. Who would have thought that one white feather could leave chaos in its wake? Throughout this journey fraught with danger and espionage, they learn the vital importance of walking by faith. I must confess that at first I wondered if I would like that book at all. Far to often, one tends to judge a book by its cover or the words of a friend. However, once I started out on the adventure, I found it utterly impossible to put down until it came to a close. The story flows like a beautiful sonorous melody, full of such emotion, depth, and wonderful cadence. Prepare to be amazed! In my humble opinion, Not By Sight is one of the best books to come out this year. The author really does have a curious knack for storytelling and deftly weaving history, espionage, sweet romance, and resilient faith throughout the entire novel. Kate Breslin is the new author that you'll want to be following. This was my first book by her and I look forward to reading more of her incredible books. I would highly recommend it to anyone, but most especially lovers of mystery and historical fiction. *I received a complimentary copy of Not by Sight from the author in exchange for an honest review and was not required to give a positive review. All thoughts expressed here are entirely my own.
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