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Customer Reviews for Thomas Nelson Stones for Bread - eBook

Thomas Nelson Stones for Bread - eBook

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4.6
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Customer Reviews for Stones for Bread - eBook
Review 1 for Stones for Bread - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 17, 2013
Customer Avatar
debwilson
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
A solitary artisan. A legacy of bread-baking. And one secret that could collapse her entire identity.
Liesl McNamara’s life can be described in one word: bread. From her earliest memory, her mother and grandmother passed down the mystery of baking and the importance of this deceptively simple food. And now, as the owner of Wild Rise bake house, Liesl spends every day up to her elbows in dough, nourishing and perfecting her craft.
But the simple life she has cultivated is becoming quite complicated. Her head baker brings his troubled grandson into the bakeshop as an apprentice. Her waitress submits Liesl’s recipes to a popular cable cooking show. And the man who delivers her flour—a single father with strange culinary habits—seems determined to win Liesl’s affection.
When Wild Rise is featured on television, her quiet existence appears a thing of the past. And then a phone call from a woman claiming to be her half-sister forces Liesl to confront long-hidden secrets in her family’s past. With her precious heritage crumbling around her, the baker must make a choice: allow herself to be buried in detachment and remorse, or take a leap of faith into a new life.
Filled with both spiritual and literal nourishment, Stones for Bread provides a feast for the senses from award-winning author Christa Parrish.
"A quietly beautiful tale about learning how to accept the past and how to let go of the parts that tie you down." —RT Book Reviews, 4.5 stars, TOP PICK!
My Review:
The random bread facts just threw me off. I love bits of information, and incorporated correctly, it can add to the story immensely. But in this case, it just made for an odd feel to the novel, and added to the overall depressing mood of the story. The writing style was different; direct and to the point; no eloquent turn of phrases or complicated explanations.
That being said, the part history, part memoirs, made for a very interesting tale. It was intriguing because it was unlike anything I've ever read before, and it was unique and uncommon telling of something that almost feels as it can be true. Liesl felt rather distant, but that only added to the charm of the book. A wonderful addition to anyone's library.
This book was provided by the publisher through Litfuse Nest for free in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 2 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

One of the best Christian fiction books I've read!

Date:January 24, 2014
Customer Avatar
Julieanne Miller
Location:Oregon
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This was a hard book to put down; a totally surprising “bread book”. It even has numerous detailed recipes for making various breads from well-kept cultures used for making the beautiful and delicious flavors and aromas that come from freshly-baked bread.
The story is not actually about just bread, but much more of the life of the young woman whose obsession in life has become her own bakery and what she produces there; it is of her life and journey from girlhood to womanhood, her emotional and spiritual adventures along the way, her attempts to keep private and self-contained thoughts and feelings, her slow awakening of her need for human love and compassion, her relationship with the fabulous personalities who surround her in her bakery, and most of all, her realization of how a living God has enhanced her life and surrounds her and enriches her with the Bread of Life.
The truths illumined here are life-sustaining. The author’s use of Scripture and assurance of God’s love in Liesl’s life are true to any person’s needs for direction and comfort. This is a fabulously rich lesson on love and forgiveness, even redemption for thoughts and actions which may not seem forgivable; many beautiful lessons to be learned through the reading of this story.
This reader had to go to her kitchen and make a loaf of bread when finished reading—though not from a culture that has been fed and cared for by generations before—still a lovely reward and reminder of how good it is to know a loving God who cares even about the crumbs we have with which to sustain ourselves, and to be thankful for what we are given.
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Review 3 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A wonderful baking story...

Date:January 13, 2014
Customer Avatar
Jen Pen
Location:Midwest
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
SUMMARY:
Liesl McNamara loves bread. For as long as she can remember, bread has been a part of her life. After following her dream, she opens a bread shop named “Wild Rise”. But soon her life is turned upside down by new employees, unexpected friendships and being featured on the Cooking Channel. Liesl must make choices that will change her life forever. In order to proceed forward, she must trust God and those around her. Is it possible?
A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
This novel is beautifully written. Parrish mixes in historical context about bread, provides in- depth perspectives of her characters and creates a story that holds the reader captive. Liesl’s passion for bread becomes evident as the reader moves through the story. For those who love to bake as well as read, they will delight in the recipes that are included in the book. Who knows…you might just be inspired! I look forward to reading more from Christa Parrish.
RATING:
4.5 (out of 5) pennies
*I received a complimentary copy of Stones for Bread from BookSneeze and Thomas
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Review 4 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 25, 2013
Customer Avatar
debwilson
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
A solitary artisan. A legacy of bread-baking. And one secret that could collapse her entire identity.
Liesl McNamara’s life can be described in one word: bread. From her earliest memory, her mother and grandmother passed down the mystery of baking and the importance of this deceptively simple food. And now, as the owner of Wild Rise bake house, Liesl spends every day up to her elbows in dough, nourishing and perfecting her craft.
But the simple life she has cultivated is becoming quite complicated. Her head baker brings his troubled grandson into the bakeshop as an apprentice. Her waitress submits Liesl’s recipes to a popular cable cooking show. And the man who delivers her flour—a single father with strange culinary habits—seems determined to win Liesl’s affection.
When Wild Rise is featured on television, her quiet existence appears a thing of the past. And then a phone call from a woman claiming to be her half-sister forces Liesl to confront long-hidden secrets in her family’s past. With her precious heritage crumbling around her, the baker must make a choice: allow herself to be buried in detachment and remorse, or take a leap of faith into a new life.
Filled with both spiritual and literal nourishment, Stones for Bread provides a feast for the senses from award-winning author Christa Parrish.
"A quietly beautiful tale about learning how to accept the past and how to let go of the parts that tie you down." —RT Book Reviews, 4.5 stars, TOP PICK!
My Review:
The random bread facts just threw me off. I love bits of information, and incorporated correctly, it can add to the story immensely. But in this case, it just made for an odd feel to the novel, and added to the overall depressing mood of the story. The writing style was different; direct and to the point; no eloquent turn of phrases or complicated explanations.
That being said, the part history, part memoirs, made for a very interesting tale. It was intriguing because it was unlike anything I've ever read before, and it was unique and uncommon telling of something that almost feels as it can be true. Liesl felt rather distant, but that only added to the charm of the book. A wonderful addition to anyone's library.
This book was provided by the publisher through Litfuse Nest for free in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 5 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A Story Of Life, Family and Love

Date:December 12, 2013
Customer Avatar
VicsMediaRoom
Location:Irvine, CA
Age:55-65
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Christa Parrish in her new book “Stones For Bread” published by Thomas Nelson takes us into the life of Liesl McNamara.
From the back cover: A solitary artisan. A legacy of bread-baking. And one secret that could collapse her entire identity.
Liesl McNamara’s life can be described in one word: bread. From her earliest memory, her mother and grandmother passed down the mystery of baking and the importance of this deceptively simple food. And now, as the owner of Wild Rise bake house, Liesl spends every day up to her elbows in dough, nourishing and perfecting her craft.
But the simple life she has cultivated is becoming quite complicated. Her head baker brings his troubled grandson into the bakeshop as an apprentice. Her waitress submits Liesl’s recipes to a popular cable cooking show. And the man who delivers her flour—a single father with strange culinary habits—seems determined to win Liesl’s affection.
When Wild Rise is featured on television, her quiet existence appears a thing of the past. And then a phone call from a woman claiming to be her half-sister forces Liesl to confront long-hidden secrets in her family’s past. With her precious heritage crumbling around her, the baker must make a choice: allow herself to be buried in detachment and remorse, or take a leap of faith into a new life.
Filled with both spiritual and literal nourishment, Stones for Bread provides a feast for the senses from award-winning author Christa Parrish.
Liesl bakes bread for a living. Bread is a symbol for life. However Liesl really doesn’t have much of a life. then people invade her life. First there is little Cecelia. Then it turns out her father is the man who delivers flour to the bakery. Liesl’s bakery is featured on T.V. prompting her half-sister to contact her. Other people give us life, make us change, give us love. This is a book about what is important in life: family, faith and forgiveness. Ms. Parrish knows how to create characters that live on the page and that we get to know and love. Get ready for an interesting read that will keep you emotionally involved.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 6 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:December 5, 2013
Customer Avatar
Rosie
Age:Under 18
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Stones for Bread is an enchanting, emotional, story about Liesl McNamara.
Written in first person present tense, we get an intimate look at Liesl's introverted personality and the events that led to who she is presently. All this while we watch her change and bloom and overcome her traumatic past. Liesl isn't like the many characters I meet on a weekly basis, she stands out. She loves her routine and likes the amount of control she has over her business. She likes certainty. In this aspect at least, I can relate to her.
This is going to sound strange, but this book reminds me of the movie Chocolat. Not because of the characters or even the setting, but because of the heart and soul of making bread passed down from mother to daughter on Liesl's mother's side. In Chocolat, Vianne and her daughter, Anouk, open a chocolate shop. The recipe Vianne uses has been passed down in her family for ages. Chocolat and Stones for Bread are very different in all other ways, but the familiar legacy is similar. I really liked that.
Throughout the novel, Parrish offers us Liesl's recipes. I loved this! In fact I plan on trying Cecilia's chocolate bread soon. I don't normally say this, but I felt like I learned quite a bit about the art of bread making. Parrish gives us this information without boring us, something that could be a big concern for some people. Will I, personally, put it to use? I'm not sure.
I recommend this book to readers sixteen and older for self-harming and a suicide (I'd say more on this, but... spoilers!). Parrish weaves Christianity into this story in a fabulous, unexpected way; especially because Liesl was never a big church goer at the beginning of the story.
I received this book from Booksneeze in return for an honest review of my opinions, which I have done. Thanks!!
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Review 7 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

I loved my visit to Wild Rise!

Date:December 4, 2013
Customer Avatar
Sufficient in Jesus
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
If thous tastest a crust of bread, thou tastest all the stars and all the heavens.' Robert Browning.
Liesl McNamara understands this. She lives and breathes this reality everyday at her bakehouse Wild Rise.
'Modern home-cooks think nothing of tearing open a bag of silken flour and a package of active dry yeast, and pouring the dry ingredients into a machine with a couple measures of water and a tour hour wait for a fresh loaf. Bread's dark history is unknown to them. And the sacrifice.'
Stones for Bread, page six.
Wild Rise is a world unto itself, and it is her world.
There are a select few individuals who understand the spirit of Wild Rise, and together they navigate life in all its tears, tragedy, innocence and irony. We get to meet these people in Stones for Bread.
Stones for Bread is a book that I am almost afraid to review.
I'm afraid that my stumbling attempts to describe the magic of this story, most of which takes place in the Wild Rise kitchen, will make it sound small and cliched, when it is none of those things.
This book isn't your typical *anything,* and I can't confine it to one genre.
It is a God-story, a Love-story, a Family Legacy story.
This book is a raw-and-lyrical-at-the-same-time story, an exploration of living after you've been devastated and discovering the meaning of life.
This book is Liesl's story, and her faith is woven in like gold threads in a tapestry.
I loved the way the theme of the Eucharist, Christ as the Bread of Life, the physical bread symbolizing Him, was displayed here. There were times when I stopped, went back to the passage, and read it again to let the words resonate.
This novel is a literary journey worth taking.
Thank you Litfuse for my copy!
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Review 8 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Stones for Bread by Christa Parrish

Date:December 1, 2013
Customer Avatar
Wanda
Location:NC
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Liesl McNamara was a bread maker by trade but it was more than that. Making bread was a family tradition that was passed from generation to generation. She learned to make bread at the hands of her mother and grandmother, Oma, from the time she was a little girl. When she found her mother dead at the age of only thirteen, Liesl closed herself off from the world eventually turning to bread making as an escape from the memories that haunted her. Now, years later, she hides from the past in her bake house, Wild Rise. Because her apprentice sends in an application for the TV show Bake-Off, Liesl sons finds herself in the middle of production with some hard decisions to make. But a little girl and her father have worked their way into her life and heart and Liesl has to decide if she is willing to let go of the past and look toward the future.
Seamus Tate is the new flour delivery man for Wild Rise bake house. After his wife walked out he found himself as a single father trying to raise a six year-old alone. When his daughter, Cecelia, becomes attached to the bakery owner he soon finds himself becoming attached to her as well. Liesl has worked her way into his heart and when his mother becomes ill and needs constant care Seamus has no choice but to return to Tennessee. Is his love enough for Liesl? Can she give up the one thing she has always used as a balm to her wounds? Or will she give up the only true love she has ever known?
I'm not exactly sure how I feel about this book. I like for a book to wrap itself around me until I feel like I am a part of the story and I just didn't feel that with this book. I love the traditions ingrained in Liesl's family. The bread making that was passed from generation to generation is something to be admired because it brought a closeness between Liesl, her mother and grandmother. Bread making was their solace and that is a beautiful thing. There are a lot of descriptions on bread and bread making all throughout the story. So much so that I feel like bread makers will be more likely to get the most out of the story. I loved her mix matched "family" though. They are described on page 211 like this, "...odd, growing Wild Rise family of immigrants, high school dropouts, nerdy engineers, flirty artists, fundamentalist farm girls, and everyone else." This is such an accurate description and you can't help but love the characters. Xavier and Tee especially. It also covered an issue that is seldom discussed and that is, self-inflicted pain. Kids often inflict pain upon themselves as a way of dealing with the problems going on in their lives. In Liesl's case she would beat her legs with a hairbrush until she was black and blue. I feel it's a problem that should be addressed more and I give a thumbs up to Christa Parrish for bringing it to light.
I am a romance junkie at heart, though, and I feel like the one thing I love took a backseat to everything else. The romance between Liesl and Seamus was slow in developing and I really like that but I wanted to read more about it. I wish it had been woven into the story more often. Seamus was such a sweet, teddy bear of a man and I would like to have seen more of him. Also, all throughout the book the story would just stop and there would be a section connecting Jesus, the Bread of Life, to the bread we consume daily and then the story would resume where it left off. While I completely agree with this theological concept, it somehow seemed misplaced for me. I'm still struggling with how to classify this book as well. Is it romance, self-help or women's fiction maybe? I'll let you be the judge. I also feel like there was a loose end. I like my books all tied up in neat little packages but I felt like there was a loose thread left hanging. If you are a romance junkie like I am, while you might like the sense of family this book evokes, you may not love the story as a whole quite as much. However, if you are a bread enthusiast I do recommend it as you will most likely love it because it has a lot of references to and instructions on bread and bread making and it also includes several recipes.
Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review. The opinions stated are mine and mine alone. I received no monetary compensation for this review.
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Review 9 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:November 30, 2013
Customer Avatar
debwilson
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
A solitary artisan. A legacy of bread-baking. And one secret that could collapse her entire identity.
Liesl McNamara’s life can be described in one word: bread. From her earliest memory, her mother and grandmother passed down the mystery of baking and the importance of this deceptively simple food. And now, as the owner of Wild Rise bake house, Liesl spends every day up to her elbows in dough, nourishing and perfecting her craft.
But the simple life she has cultivated is becoming quite complicated. Her head baker brings his troubled grandson into the bakeshop as an apprentice. Her waitress submits Liesl’s recipes to a popular cable cooking show. And the man who delivers her flour—a single father with strange culinary habits—seems determined to win Liesl’s affection.
When Wild Rise is featured on television, her quiet existence appears a thing of the past. And then a phone call from a woman claiming to be her half-sister forces Liesl to confront long-hidden secrets in her family’s past. With her precious heritage crumbling around her, the baker must make a choice: allow herself to be buried in detachment and remorse, or take a leap of faith into a new life.
Filled with both spiritual and literal nourishment, Stones for Bread provides a feast for the senses from award-winning author Christa Parrish.
"A quietly beautiful tale about learning how to accept the past and how to let go of the parts that tie you down." —RT Book Reviews, 4.5 stars, TOP PICK!
My Review:
The random bread facts just threw me off. I love bits of information, and incorporated correctly, it can add to the story immensely. But in this case, it just made for an odd feel to the novel, and added to the overall depressing mood of the story. The writing style was different; direct and to the point; no eloquent turn of phrases or complicated explanations.
That being said, the part history, part memoirs, made for a very interesting tale. It was intriguing because it was unlike anything I've ever read before, and it was unique and uncommon telling of something that almost feels as it can be true. Liesl felt rather distant, but that only added to the charm of the book. A wonderful addition to anyone's library.
This book was provided by the publisher through Litfuse Nest for free in exchange for an honest review.
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Review 10 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Leisurely Read for a Reflective Day

Date:November 27, 2013
Customer Avatar
Anonymous
Location:Columbus, GA
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I just love stories about broken and lonely people gathering together to form community. "Stones for Bread" is this. It’s the story of Liesl, owner of the Wild Rise bake house. Still overcoming the shock of her mother’s suicide and of finding the body at the age of just twelve, Liesl holds people at arm’s length. Yet she loves to bake bread and takes her role as keeper of the bread seriously, preserving a family legacy.
Throughout the book, God brings new people into Liesl’s life and reveals secrets about the people she already knows. Liesl must learn to adapt to changing needs, to open her heart and her life to people she cares about, and to listen for—and trust—God’s Voice.
Because it’s a book about a growing community of broken people, suicide isn’t the only circumstance that people must work through that’s touched on in the book. Others include depression, self-harm, alcoholism, adoption, cancer, dyslexia, abandonment, divorce, death, and corporate greed. The story doesn’t dwell on these, however—just acknowledges they exist. The focus of the story is on Liesl and her loved ones learning to get along and care for one another. They’re learning how to live.
"Stones for Bread" is a leisurely read for a reflective day. I enjoyed my time with it. I probably won’t try any of the bread recipes scattered throughout the book, but I found the history and mechanics of bread baking to be interesting. Thomas Nelson Publishers sent a complimentary copy of this book for this honest review. I recommend it to you.
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Review 11 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Bread has a beauty beyond eating

Date:November 19, 2013
Customer Avatar
bookwomanjoan
Location:Oak Harbor, WA
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Liesl's world is bread. Bread has a beauty beyond eating and Liesl is an artisan. She is living out her legacy of bread-baking as owner of Wild Rice bake house. Her mother and grandmother passed down the mystery of baking and Liesl continues the tradition.
Liesl's life gets more complicated when her head baker brings his troubled grandson to the kitchen. Then a waitress submits her recipes to a popular cable cooking show for a potential contest. And there is a new delivery man who gets under her skin.
Liesl's quiet life disappears after her television appearance. And then a phone call from a stranger shatters the very foundation upon which she has built her life.
Parrish has created the character study of a young woman who is trying to survive her past as her troubled childhood continues to insert itself into her present life. Relationships are so very difficult for Liesl, she tends to sabotage the attempts others make at closeness. The narrative alternates between the present and her youth as we come to see why she is who she is – a solitary bread artisan.
This book will make you fall in love with bread. Real bread, not the packaged stuff you buy at the store. I was fascinated with the information about bread contained in this novel. Parrish has added vignettes of bread's history throughout the narrative. There are some bread great recipes included too.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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Review 12 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Outstanding Christian Literary Novel

Date:November 19, 2013
Customer Avatar
Iola
Location:New Zealand
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Liesl McNamara is the owner of Wild Rise, a specialty bakery in a small town in Vermont. The story is told on three different levels. This should be distracting, but somehow it isn’t (that could be because I’m a fact and history nut). The main story is that of Liesl, an only child who has inherited a love of breadmaking from her German mother and Oma (grandmother).
This main story is interspersed with stories from Liesl’s past—happy stories about her learning the art of breadmaking, and sadder stories of grief and loss. The third story is the place of bread in history—the labour required to produce a single loaf of bread is astounding, as is the role of bread in history. All are written in the first person, from Liesl’s viewpoint. There are also recipes linking to the story.
Our initial impression of Liesl is of a competent professional woman, but as the stories progress, we start to see her as a damaged individual with deep issues. She makes bread, in part, because that’s something she is able to control—unlike life. There are some painful and poignant insights into Liesl, into humanity, and into why we find it difficult to submit to God.
Christian fiction mostly stays within strict genre definitions. A novel might be a romance or romantic suspense or a thriller or Amish, but it’s definable. This is less so, and with a focus more on the internal journey of Liesl. This, combined with the threefold plot, the recipes and the beautiful use of language is why Stones for Bread doesn’t sit comfortably in any genre. It is not romance, although there is a romantic element. It is not action or suspense. The closest definition is women’s fiction, but even that runs the risk of missing something. Sure, this is the story of one woman and there are elements all women will find familiar, but there is something more, and it’s that something that raises this book above average, above what I normally find in Christian fiction.
I didn’t read the recipes. I read the first one and decided to thank God for the fact that I don’t have to put this level of effort into putting bread on the table for my family. Sure, even the fresh baked in-store bread from my local supermarket or bakery doesn’t match up to what Liesl sells at Wild Rise, but I know I’m never going to put that level of effort into baking a loaf of bread. Maybe that’s my loss. Recommended.
Thanks to Thomas Nelson and Booksneeze for providing a free ebook for review.
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Review 13 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Complicated Story and Characters

Date:November 17, 2013
Customer Avatar
Casey
Location:Oregon
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
It’s been too long since I’ve picked up a Christa Parrish novel. Her name has become synonymous with that of deep, well thought out women’s fiction and I was not the least bit disappointed in her 2013 release.
“Stones for Bread” is not a light and fluffy read (pun intended), but one much like the sourdough our heroine makes and is known for: thick and more than a bit sour. Leisel is a complicated character and you have to read much of the book before the pieces of her story start to unravel to get a glimpse into who this woman is. I loved how Seamus disrupted her normal routine and nothing was the same. I thought the crafting of these two character’s relationship was absolutely beautiful. It wasn’t rushed or hurried, because that isn’t what Leisel would be able to handle. As the reader, you get to watch her slowly unfurl and rise from the ashes that have too long defined her.
It’s a great question for the reader too: what part of your past do you allow to affect and define who you are right now? This novel would be a fantastic book club read, but there is also so much to enjoy even if read by one’s self.
I’ve loved the previous two titles I’ve read by this author. Her way of seeing the world moves me, while also incredibly thought provoking and deep. Stones for Bread is another fine example of the growth and ability that is rising from this able and worthy talent.
This review is my honest opinion. Thanks to the publishers through Litfuse and Netgalley for my copy to review.
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Review 14 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Cerebral Read

Date:November 14, 2013
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Becky Doughty
Location:Southern California
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Christa's voice was one of the first I read in Christian fiction last year, after a looooong forage into what the world had on its bookshelves. What I heard in her words, what I read between the lines, was that there were others out there like me who wanted to read about God and His personal interest in our lives in more tangible and relevant ways than what the Christian fiction industry had to offer thus far. Since reading that book (The Air We Breathe), I'm happy to say that I've discovered many other authors who are writing about Jesus Christ in a way that gives Him far more credit and GLORY than what I'd come to expect (having had those expectations validated on far too many occasions; unfortunately, even to this day) of this industry.
That being said, I must admit that Stones for Bread took me awhile to embrace. To be honest, I had some preconceived notions based on my own elevated sense of self - I make our family's bread exclusively, and was sure I would relate to Leisl McNamara in that way. But that girl was so far beyond my bread-making skill that I look like a finger-painter next to Michael Angelo.... I felt slowed down by the weight of Christa's words; this novel was so cerebral, like ethereal poetry, that it took me a long time to get into the story, itself. If you've read any Ann Voskamp, you might find that the cover of this book isn't the only similarity--Christa writes Stones for Bread in much the same way Ann writes One Thousand Gifts. This isn't a bad thing--Ann's prose and style are brilliant--but reading this style in fiction definitely requires a different mindset for the reader going in.
HOWEVER, once I allowed myself to sink into the lyrical telling of this beautiful tale, and found my own rhythm in the reading of it, I began to ache and long and celebrate for each of the characters. By the time I was halfway through the book, I was invested in these characters in unexpected ways, and I realized that Christa, in the writing of Stones for Bread, has done what artisans who know their craft do best. She intuitively knows how long to nurture the starter, not rushing the process, she kneads out the hollow places at the right times, and lets the story proof until it's time to turn up the heat. Reaching the last chapter was like cutting into a perfectly-baked baguette that bears the scars of the process that brought it to completion--the knobby crust, the perforated crumb, the irregular shape--and I closed the book with a sense of deep satisfaction.
Another beautiful book by Christa Parrish.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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Review 15 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Another fantastic book by this author!

Date:November 11, 2013
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Teddy G
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Monday, November 11, 2013
Stones for Bread - by Christa Parrish
Liesl McNamara's life revolves around bread and the bakery she has opened to follow her passion for the bread. Her memories of her mother and grandmother are wrapped up in the bread and she has sacrificed her dreams of travel for the bread. When it comes down to it, will the bread be more important than her relationships? And how does she fit faith into her life when she's so consumed with the bread?
How do I express how much I loved this book? While it's not very plot-driven, it is rich with characters and emotions and vulnerability. It took me awhile to adjust to the switches between current story, back story, and church history, but in the end, it was woven together so well that it made the book full and deep. The history of bread would not normally be exciting for me to read by itself, but as integral as it was to Liesl's life, it made me care about the bread. So much so, that I actually felt guilty buying plain white sandwich bread while reading this book. That's an absorbing story!
There were so many relationships tied into the story that revolved around bread, but they were intricate and deep and real. At first, I thought that the half-sister story line was distracting, and then I thought maybe it just wasn't filled out enough, but in the end, the purpose of the story was for Liesl to find herself both in the story of the bread and who she was without it, and the family story line served its purpose to help her.
I did find the recipes for bread sprinkled throughout the story a bit distracting; I would have preferred that they maybe be in an appendix at the end, but it did give me an appreciation for how much of an art these breads are.
As with Christa Parrish's other novels, I loved this one, and I give it 5 stars. I will continue to eagerly await her future releases!
I received a copy of this book from Thomas Nelson publishers, as part of their BookSneeze program, in exchange for my honest review.
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Review 16 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Discover more than just how to bake bread!

Date:November 6, 2013
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Heart2Heart
Location:Victorville, CA
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
"Alexandre Dumas, père, wrote of bakers:
In Paris today millions of pounds of bread are sold daily, made during the previous night by those strange, half-naked beings one glimpses through cellar windows, whose wild-seeming cries floating out of those depths always makes a painful impression. In the morning, one sees these pale men, still white with flour, carrying a loaf under one arm, going off to rest and gather new strength to renew their had and useful labor when night comes again. I have always highly esteemed the brave and humble workers who labor all night to produce those soft but crusty loaves that look more like cake than bread...
It is bread that keeps them alive. Give us this day our daily bread, they pray, and they praise the Almighty for it.
Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.
So, I pack the bread in bags, like I will for any paying customer. I don't send burnt loaves or stale loaves, or any kitchen experiment I don't believe is quality enough to sell. I will not give to the least of these anything I will not offer to my Lord, should he walk into Wild Rise one afternoon and ask for a little something to eat.
The secrets of baking have, until relatively recently, always been passed from mother to daughter. I was young, eight perhaps, when my own mother tied her apron around my waist and told me it was time for me to show her how much of what she taught me I remembered. It was time for me to make my first loaf without help or instruction. No recipes. Just my senses. And I did. It was a square loaf of wheat bread. A little too dense. A little too brown. But we ate it at supper that night, my father, my mother, and I, with butter and salt, rewarmed in the oven. And my mother said to me, "You're now the keeper of bread." It was my right of passage."
In the novel Stones for Bread, author Christa Parrish takes the readers into much more than a contemporary story about the art of making bread. She touches those warm places within our hearts that sense more to bread than just what we eat. It becomes part of who we are and provides nourishment to both the heart and soul of those we make it for. It is a piece of ourselves.
The story is based around the life of Liesl McNamara, owner and baker at Wild Rise, a bake house in Vermont. Her's is a story of the generations of bread bakers beginning with her grandmother and mother til finally resting within herself. The story winds its way into Liesl's tragic childhood and culminates with her being entered in a reality show called Baked Off by one of her employees. Woven in between are the mouth-watering recipes of 11 Artisan Bread that you will find takes time to make just perfect but well worth the effort. This is simply a story to be experienced and enjoyed from cover to cover and trust me, you'll never look at a loaf of bread the same again. I rate this one a 4 out of 5 stars.
I received Stones for Bread by Christa Parrish compliments of Thomas Nelson Publishers and Litfuse Publicity for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation for a favorable review and the opinions expressed in this review are strictly my own.
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Review 17 for Stones for Bread - eBook
This review is fromStones for Bread.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Beautiful

Date:October 23, 2013
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cici
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Stones For Bread by Christa Parrish is the story of Liesl and her life. She is a so comfotable in her families bakery that when certain insterests come into her life she is not all to willing to accept the challenge of them. Liesl, in my opinion, would rather live a life where she knows the outcome rather than the unknown. It may seem to some that this is a form of control but the truth is that it is so scary to let go and let in any new endeavours. The unknown can harm more then it can heal. Fortunately for Liesl the unknown did help heal her past and created a new future that she was more then ready to nuture. This is a novel not to missed, it transforms.
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