When I received an email from Phenix & Phenix Literary Publicists about review The Promises She Keeps, I was intrigued and agreed to review it. Neither the email or the back blurb prepared me for this book. First, I was expecting Christian Fiction and second I was expecting something more suspense and romance. There is some romantic love but I didn’t find it very suspenseful.
The plot revolves around Promises and how Porta quest for eternal life effects a lot of people. Some whom have never met. I liked the basic plot, it was interesting by itself. Since this was a Christian fiction novel there was a struggle between Porta's occult religious views and Chases Christian beliefs. There was some overt religious references in the books, quote from scripture and such, but it didn't distracted me from the story for the most part. Towards the end there was a section dealing with Chases twin sister, Chelsea, and his mentor, Wes, that did pull me out of the story a little.
The back cover mentions eternal love, and Chase falling in love with Promise. Chase falls in love with Promise after meeting her once. During the whole story Chase and Promise interact maybe five times and because of his autism those meetings are awkward. I don't understand how he fell in love with her but Chase is the character that I found it the hardest to connect with. I don't know if this was the authors, Erin Healy, attention but Chase fell flat for me especially since his character was so essential to the storyline.
Promises character, also didn't connect with me. I found her to be sometimes selfish and I wasn't sympathetic to her struggle, illness or desire for fame. The characters that I did like and could connect to were minor characters. Chelsea and Wes, their subplot and their feelings towards Chase grabbed me and had my attention. I also like Zack, he was one of the more three dimensional characters in the story. I think he should have been mention on the back cover, because I honestly don't see how the storyline could have progressed without him.
Healy's writing style was a little hard to get use to. The story seemed to go back and forth between realism and magical realism. I didn't find the book that engaging, in fact it took me months to finish it. I would sit it down and completely forget about for weeks at a time.