The Other Daughter by Miralee Ferrell opens with a premise that kept me hooked to the satisfying end. A woman discovers her husband has another daughter when the girl shows up on her doorstep with a suitcase--on the woman's birthday. Surprise!David Carson has already had marital issues with his wife Susanne. She does not share his faith, and it has driven a wedge in their emotional intimacy. David has become a workaholic, and has missed celebrating her birthday the year prior, so he has some 'splaining to do. Added to this lovechild bombshell, he has agreed for Grandfather to visit them. Another surprise for Susanne.This family's struggles to come to terms with the husband's youthful indiscretion and to reach out to a child who needs them is drafted in authenticity and compassion. I lingered over this book, feeling what Susanne, David and Brianna--the other daughter--felt, and allowed their journeys to soak in like a gentle rain.This book will make you yearn for justice, and it will restore your faith in marriage and family.
A girls shows up on your birthday claiming to be your husband's daughter and puts you completely in shock. As events unroll all throughout this books, you see how everything one person does affects another and other people. Lessons on forgiveness, loving others with open arms, accepting God is in control, loving without judgment, and much more.Children sometimes are more readily able to love regardless than adults do as they don't foster the hurts. Lessons on how other people may even encourage us for the wrong. This book touched me in so many ways. Susanne was a Foster Parent. I have done Respic Care - babysitting for Foster Children. I also have been involved trying to get children out of a bad situation so Brianna's story truly touched a cord with me.Adults who have no feeling toward children or how to treat them. Uncle Arthur Warren was only interested in the Welfare money he could get if he could Brianna back. I have seen the Mother of my two step-grandchildren and their grandmother use them for only that reason. My heart broke so many times throughout this story. The end is a story of God's mercy, unconditional love, and bringing lives into his plan.
Wow! This book was an emotional one, but one that I love! Miralee definitely has a talent that is worth singing praises for. She knows how to pull characters together that won't be forgotten as well as a storyline that is both heartwarming and full of struggles. Miralee tells the story of young Brianna, a young teenager who's mother has passed on and she is left to go and live with a father she never grew up with. A father,named David, who has another wife and children. I really felt my heart being pulled to Brianna alot but the one that I felt the biggest pull to, was Susanne, David's wife. She doesn't share David's beliefs and I felt called to pray for her so many times through the story,especially when she found out her husband has another daughter...that's not hers! Not only that, but I was completely captured from the beginning, by Miralee's writing, and wasn't let go til I reached the very last page. This is one of those books that will have you smiling, praying and crying. You'll want to reach out and hug all the characters and tell them "hey, it will be okay. Just let God handle it for you!". With a powerful message of God's love, understanding and forgiveness, Miralee does a fantastic job of bringing to us a book that will hit home for so many people. Though, I didn't struggle in my life with a lot of the issues that were in this book, I could still relate to the characters in so many ways. It really hit home for me in a way that is just hard to explain. I will say, however, that this book is a must read for EVERYONE. It is a 5 star book that deserves to be recommended to everyone and an author who's talents should be praised! Well done, Miralee!
A truck rushing out the graveled drive way and then a knock, what in the world is going on. Susanne Carson goes to the door and opened to see a little girl standing there with a small suitcase. She wonders what to do, as there were no adults around so she invited the girl in. The little girl would not say much but she asked for David Carson, Susannes husband, what could she want with David.As the story progresses they let the girl stay with them until some relative could be found, but no one is looking for the girl. Susanne and Davids children like the girl but even though Susanne had kept foster children she just was not comfortable with this girl. David is a Christian but even though Susanne goes to church with the family she just does not feel that believing that God could take care of someone was possible.Susanne has a friend named Jena and that friend is not what she should be. She talks Susanne into drinking and not trusting her husband and that make things at home worse.As time goes on in the book, things begin to work out for the family but then another thing happens, the man that dropped Brianna off comes back to harass the family, everything blows up and they find themselves in court trying to keep the girl.I really like this story as one of my sons had to go to court to get his daughters and even got their sister that he was not the father of. Very nice Mialee and thanks to Kregel Publications for furnishing me a copy to read. I am not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express are my own.
If you're looking for a great read that embodies all the elements of a book that will truly touch your heart, check out The Other Daughter. It is intriguing in that the story is told from the perspective of both husband and wife, and different in that the wife is a non-believer while the husband is a Christian with a long-ago indiscretion. The gut reaction of both main characters to the appearance of Brianna is understandable. Nothing is "pat" but they work through it together. How they do this is their story, and it's told in a thoroughly involving way. Sometimes you don't like the choices they make and want to shake some sense into them. But always, you root for them. This is part of what makes them such great characters and such a "real" story. The supporting characters are terrific, from Grandfather to Brianna, and David and Susanne's children. Susanne's friend, Jeena, has hidden demons that I know the author will address in another book. She is not a likeable character, but we all know a "Jeena." This in and of itself makes Jeena interesting, and makes the reader curious about her background and why she makes bad decisions and is so bitter.Stylistically, so many authors try to be too flowery or poetic. The Other Daughter is intelligently and thoughtfully written, but an easy read. It's a great book to absorb yourself into, as you're drawn into the world of Susanne and David. Without reiterating any more of the plotline as other reviewers have done, I will say that it moves and never lost my interest. The ends are tied up neatly, but that's the way this reader likes it. I'd like a little more of the romance element. However, love is shown in so many other ways - the loving portrait the author draws of how Susanne and David work through this situation together. THAT is the true test of love and marriage. Read it today! I highly recommend The Other Daughter.
This author's first book had me emotionally attached from page 1 and wiping tears throughout the rest of the story. The spiritual struggles depicted by the characters could only have been written by someone who understands the process. Writing about timely moral and spiritual issues can be a daunting task but Miralee's background of teaching, speaking and counseling as well as her personal dedication to God has made her a vessel effectively used by her Lord to bless and encourage her readers. Bless you, Miralee, and keep writing!
This one ran all the emotions possible! "I laughed, I cried, it moved me, Bob!" (Larry the Cucumber, VeggieTales) LOL I did, I laughed, cried, got upset with how things weren't going the right way.This is a great book on looking at how the Lord takes any circumstance and uses it for good. A great example of gentle witnessing, forgiveness and unconditional love.I truly enjoyed this one.
A knock at the door sends a family into turmoil. What is Susanne supposed to think when she discovers her husband has not been honest with her? If he lied about his chastity before they were married, what else is he hiding from her? If he fathered an illegitimate child, how can she believe his proclamations of Christianity?As for David, his past has come back to haunt him. Has a youthful indiscretion brought all this? Although his marriage had its rocky moments, things seemed to be going okay until this teenage girl steps on his porch and claims he is her father. Now what? The girls mother is dead. How can he prove or deny her claims. At first, Briannas presence is seen as a threat. Could her intrusion possibly bring about a blessing? Miralee Ferrell has penned a wonderful story of how God weaves even our mistakes into a tapestry that only He can design. A good and worthwhile read.
Wonderful book on a theme that will touch much of today's society. A story of love and forgiveness in a marriage that is threatened by the discovery of the existence of an innocent child. Great insights for parents of step-children as well as all families wanted to exhibit true love. The real story is not about the child, but centers around the very heart of forgiveness. This will always be a favorite for me.
A Story With Take-Away Value. I won't repeat what others have said. I saw Susanne grow as a Christian, as a wife, and then as a mother. This is a book I would read over again. It touched my heart. I will read more books by this author.
This is one of those books you don't want to put down. The story is one that, in some cases, could really be true, and the ending is one that you won't soon forget. My copy will soon be added to our church's library.
When a happily married couple with two kids suddenly is suddenly slammed in the face with a 14 year old reality, can their sanity and marriage survive the trauma? Susanne Carson and her husband David have a marriage that is starting to falter just a bit due to their religious differences. David is so patient, and the reader cannot help but love this guy. Susanne is pretty headstrong, and sometimes I wanted to smack her. A screech of tires and a knock on the door changes their lives forever when 13 year old Brianna announces her Mother is dead and she is there to stay with her father, David. Suffice it to say that shock and terror were only two of the emotions felt by this family, along with anger, hurt, panic and fear. David never tries to deny the existance of a one night stand with the child's mother, but he fails when trying to explain to this wife. They both feel he was less than truthful when he kept this little secret to himself. This is a story so possibly true, with feelings laid out for all to see through reading, that nothing is spared to the reader. One sees the emotional, physical and spiritual side to all the characters who are involved. Accepting and loving describe the children and Grandpa. Confusion seems to dominate their future when Brianna's uncle reappears in their lives. A horrible horse accident throws yet another burr into the already mixed up feelings of the family. This first of the series is an excellent look at marriage, religion, children, sex outside of marriage and the influence of several family and friends. It also features, plainly, that old saying from the Bible "you reap what you sow"....eventually the cows come home. I am happy to become acquainted with this new author, and will put her books right up there in my special group of authors on my "must read" list. Thank you Miralee, for this first book, and hopefully a second is on the way.
This was an awesome read, one that will stay with me for a long time to come, for it truly stirred my emotions right to the core of my existence. This story was about a couple enduring trials through the unexpected arrival of a young girl at the front door. This young girl would change all their lives as the story unravels of who she is, and where she has come from. Their reactions and interactions as well as their inter most thoughts play out in a emotional drama that will make it hard for you set this book down as the story unfolds.I felt it was the first book that I have read that really showed life from a Christian perspective. How, you ask? It showed the difficulties that people not only face in real life situations but also what we struggle with inwardly in our Christian walk. It clearly shows the different mind set between a believer and a non-believer and how that effects our relationships. I highly recommend this book! It certainly sets a new stage for writers of Christian novels to attain. Excellent! Shirley Johnson/Senior ReviewerMidWest Book Review
I think that I unconsciously select books by different authors that have the same storyline. I had just finished reading "Ocean's Apart" by Karen Kingsbury when I selected this book to read. Interestingly both of the books had similar plots involving unknown children coming to claim their parents. I thought it was interesting to see how the stories parallel each other and also how the characters would react in different ways. In this book it was refreshingly realistic to see the other parent, the one who was left in the dark, be angry and even hostile towards the entire situation. I'm not saying this is the right behavior to act but it shows true human nature as opposed to immediate acceptance with everyone hugging. I wouldn't expect anyone, even a devout Christian, to not have some hurt and wounded feelings to not have known this deep dark secret from their spouse's past. Also it would only be natural to become suspicious about everything now. I thought the story was extremely well written. It capture my interest right from the get go. The Native American touch was very interesting to read as well. The only thing that bugged me a little about the story was that I felt Briana acted younger than her age. I know she's had a hard life, but in my opinion she acted like she was 12 or younger. She didn't seem interested in a lot of things that normal fourteen year olds would be into. Other than this, I really enjoyed reading this story. It's an excellent debut and I'm looking forward to reading more from this author.
The Other Daughter by Miralee Ferrell starts out with a bomb dropping into Suzanne Carson's world. On the evening of her birthday, a thirteen year old girl shows up on her doorstep claiming to be Suzanne's husband, David's, daughter. While David and Suzanne's two children, especially daughter Megan, accept Brianna without hesitation, as does David's father. But Suzanne is bitterly resentful at David's unfaithfulness and sees it as a sign that his God and religion are illusions. David loves his wife and children dearly, and for fear of hurting them keeps his distance as well from this young, vulnerable girl. It's not often in Christian fiction that in a marriage, the husband is portrayed as the faithful one and the wife as the unbeliever. Suzanne's insistence on relying only on herself separates her not only from God, but from David, Brianna, and even her children. Ferrell's writing is skillful as she portrays Suzanne sympathetically even when she's acting in a way that's not. Because she writes so openly about Suzanne's hurt and pain, it's easy to care about the character and appreciate her growth throughout the story. While the ending may be a little pat (but entirely enjoyable), Ferrell excels at creating a powerful story with realistic characters about the power of trusting in God.
This book was awesome! The author has a style of writing that makes you want to keep reading and reading. It was very hard to put down! It definitely makes you think about what you would do if you were put in the same situation. It's a must read!
Susanne Carson has some problems, but trusting her husband is not one of them. David is a good man, a wonderful father to their two children, and a kind, caring husband. Aside from his involvement in the Christian faith, which Susanne cannot bring herself to embrace, their marriage is mostly good.Then Brianna shows up on their doorstep, battered suitcase in hand, claiming to be Davids daughter. If not for the girls striking family resemblance, Susanne would refuse to believe the possibility but there is that likeness and a letter from the teens deceased mother. Then, of course, theres the fact that David admits it is most likely true.With a strange, unwelcome child in their care and a widening wall between Susanne and David, their home becomes an emotional battlefield of hurt, disillusionment, and shattered trust. Susannes unwillingness to place her life in Gods hands is strengthened by Davids deception. Can she ever forgive him? Will she ever be able to love his illegitimate child?When Briannas abusive, alcoholic uncle shows up to reclaim the girl, Susanne and David are forced to come to terms with their own feelings and make some hard decisions. Will their love be strong enough to withstand a test of this magnitude?A marriage in trouble. Two hearts in conflict. A soul at the crossroads.In The Other Daughter, the author combines all the fascinating elements into a compelling, utterly believable piece of beautifully wrought fiction. Its an unforgettable journey into a mothers heart, a familys love, a couples faltering relationship. Miralee Ferrells debut novel is rich with believable characters and poignant situations, and laced with little details that provide a wonderfully realistic setting. Its a work of heart that will not be easily forgotten.
I'm almost finished with this book. It was a heart breaker. To find that the dad ignored that he could be father then didn't tell his wife for fear she wouldn't marry him, broke my heart. He needed to not only trust his bride to be but trust God to intervene.
For a debut novel, author Miralee Ferrell has proven with The Other Daughter that she can captivate her reading audience from the very first page. Beginning with the arrival of Brianna, a young teenage girl claiming her mother is dead, her uncle doesnt want her and that David Carson is her biological father, Susan and David Carsons marriage is in very serious trouble.While David turned his life over to God long ago, Susan refused to do the same. Now she finds she must deal with her feelings that she can no longer trust her husband, pushing her further away from God. They have two children of their own. How could a God so loving do that to their family?David is consumed with guilt and distances himself away from Brianna, though the resemblance between them is striking and once he learns who her mother is, he knows hes her father. But he can see the pain on Susans face and almost hear her broken heart.Brianna has had a difficult life and is used to rejection. Shes wrapped herself so tightly inside a shell of protection, that it will take a miracle to save this family, much less...her.But Meagan and Josh Carson, David and Susannes children, easily accept the new family addition, adding to Susans confusion as she struggles with her maternal instincts, while it tears her heart out to look at this girl who looks so much like David, knowing she is not her mother. The Other Daughter is a heart touching story filled with a roller coaster of emotions, turmoil, love, forgiveness and deception, and leads the Carson family on a suspenseful journey until God intervenes and his plan for this family becomes apparent. Miralee Ferrell has captured the essence of her characters well in this novel and will have you turning the pages, not wishing to put it down.Reviewed by Cindy Bauer, author of Chasing Memories and Shades of Blue, Inspirational Fiction