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Customer Reviews for Thomas Nelson Moon over Edisto

Thomas Nelson Moon over Edisto

Julia's parents' marriage was ruined by Marney, and now years later she's asking for a favor! Marney, recently widowed, needs somebody to take care of her children while she's in the hospital. Reluctantly, Julia agrees to look after them. But could it be a family secret that finally heals Julia's shattered heart? 320 pages, softcover from Nelson.
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4.6
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12 out of 1392%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Moon over Edisto
Review 1 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Engrossing southern fiction

Date:August 6, 2013
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Carole Jarvis
Location:Jonesboro, Georgia
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Moon Over Edisto by Beth Webb Hart is a stand-alone novel that beautifully captures the sights, smells and tastes of South Carolina's Lowcountry as the backdrop for this complex and moving drama involving the dysfunctional Bennett family. My attention was captured from the very beginning of this well-written novel.
I was drawn to this story because it seemed to fit two of my interests - southern fiction and relationship drama - and it certainly did not disappoint. South Carolina's Lowcountry and Edisto Island are so vividly described and become such an integral part of the story that they are elevated to character status - traditional southern cuisine, the Ravenel bridge, salt marshes, winding streams, and "massive live oaks, their Spanish moss waving in the light evening breeze from the creek."
This story is all about the Bennett family, a family Julia describes as "Southern Gothic Dysfunction." Instead of looking at how a seemingly loving marriage disintegrated, Moon Over Edisto focuses on the lingering effects of betrayal and desertion on the ones left behind, for it's always the innocent who are most affected.
Characterization is rich and complex. The older sister, Julia, tried to cope by running away and starting a new life in New York, though often haunted by panic attacks and bouts of depression. Meg - feeling that her father was a fool, while her mother had no clue - became harsh and legalistic, wanting justice for the guilty ones rather than grace, to the extent that her own marriage was threatened. Meg "realized how very worn out she was. How exhausting it was to wear her masks, to build her reputation, to prove to the world day in and day out that even though her parents were fools, she was not. She was a responsible, morally upstanding citizen. She could be counted upon. She was worthy of admiration. She would not shame her husband or falter in any way. She had the blessed life, and she would not squander it. Or would she?"
The three children from their father's other family simply captured my heart, especially Etta, who only talks to her little brother. I love how Beth uses art in this narrative, as Julia and Etta discover a shared talent. One day, Julia sees Etta's sketch of their father: "This young girl had captured something true about him. Something in his rich brown eyes that could only be described as love. How could someone with eyes like that cause so much damage?"
Although the ending is upbeat and satisfying, this is not a story where everything is tied up neatly, nor should it be. If I wished for anything, it would be a longer ending, but that in no way detracts from this powerful novel. There is a strong spiritual message, but rather than being overt, it is embedded in Julia's heart and actions. Julia's character occasionally uses the phrase, "Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy," and these words seem to have so much more feeling and depth at the end.
I am so glad that I discovered Beth Webb Hart's work. Moon Over Edisto is a very moving novel with great depth, and I recommend it highly. I suspect many readers, especially those touched by divorce, will find that this story speaks to them.
This book was provided by Thomas Nelson through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
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Review 2 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Very Moving Story

Date:July 5, 2013
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Britt98
Location:Grand Prairie, TX
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
As I started this book, I have to admit that I was not sure if I would like it. There are some very serious hurts that are being dealt with in this book. But as I read on, I discovered that I did not want to put this book down. The author did a great job of telling this story through the different perspectives of the characters in this book. The book delves into infidelity, desertion, desire for love and family, injustice, anger and hurt. We view much of the book through Julia's eyes, the oldest sister in a family that was destroyed by a father's infidelity and desertion. We also view events through her younger sister, Meg's, eyes. There is a lot of anger there. We see Julia's mom, Mary Ellen's, side of the story and view how her life has been for the past twenty years. We view part of the story from Jed's viewpoint. Jed is a neighbor and was Julia's first kiss. Finally, we get a child's perspective through Etta, who is one of the children from Julia's father's second marriage. This book is so interesting and I felt very emotional reading it. I really enjoyed the book, however, I felt it ended a little abruptly. I would have liked another chapter or two, or maybe an epilogue to really feel that the conclusion of the book lived up to the rest of the story. I received a copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
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Review 3 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Very slow start

Date:June 20, 2013
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Nicki
Location:Missouri, Mo
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Moon Over Edisto by Beth Webb Hart was a book about love, forgiveness, and the power of art.
Julia's family, was the happiest family there was. She had picked up her Father's talent for painting and would love to paint the beauty of her homeland in the low country on Edisto Island in South Carolina right beside her Father. Her childhood was filled with wonderful memories, of painting, crabbing, and fishing with her loving parents always by her side. Then suddenly when she was a young adult everything shattered. Her parents out of the blue got a devorce and her Father married Julia's best friend. After 25 years Julia, her mom, and younger sister Meg were still trying to pick up the pieces. Just a few years earlier her father had died of a stroke after he had three more children with his new wife. Then suddenly an emergency forced Julia back to the place she use to call home so many years ago on Edisto to care for her three half siblings. But will she be able to face that place again without another break down? Will her or her broken family ever find peace and true happiness ever again? Beth Webb Hart did an amazing job of painting a picture with the power of words! But for about the first 100 pages it had a very slow start. And she was switching back and forth from different people too quickly, so it gave me no idea what was going on, which made me get board with it quickly. Though I have to say the ending will surprise you. Though this book was not my type of reading, after I got through half of the book it did grab my interest.
I got this book free from Booksneeze in exchange for my honest review.
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Review 4 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

This captures the beauty of the Low Country.

Date:April 2, 2013
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smk402
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
This book got off to a really slow start. So much so that I read less than one chapter before setting it aside for something with a faster pace. After reading four(!) other books, I remembered this book on my e-reader and how much I was looking forward to reading a book set in the Low Country, and forced myself back into it. I’m so glad I did.
Once Julia makes the decision to head to South Carolina and care for her younger half-siblings, the story really picks up. I could almost taste the salty air and smell the pluff mud once Julia made it to Edisto Island. Ah, home. The next thing I knew I had finished the book and was wanting more. The characters came to life best from Etta’s eyes. The silent child had the most insightful things to share. Meg has some justifiable anger towards her sister, but the way she treats her mother throughout much of the book bothered me.
Saying why would involve spoilers, so suffice it to say that I would love to see a sequel to this book.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. 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 5 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Moon Over Edisto

Date:March 4, 2013
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
Life is messy and oftentimes the messiness inflicted on you is the result of others’ actions. Several years before this story takes place Julia’s father made a very messy decision. This decision shattered many lives and the cracks kept appearing even after he was gone. His actions set into motion repercussions for both of his families.
Julia has spent many years isolating herself from all of the pain and mess of her family. But sometimes there are journeys that we need to take. It may see as if we are doing something for someone else, but in the end we are the ones that are blessed.
Beth Webb Hart has once again woven a southern gothic dream (or is it nightmare) of a story. In this novel she allows her main character Julia to face the worst type of betrayal. The situation will have you yelling, NO NO NO…that’s not fair! But we all know that life isn’t fair, it’s about refinement.
I enjoyed the book so much. Coastal South Carolina is my favorite place to be and Beth puts you right there with the pluff mud between your toes and the salty breezes in your hair. After reading it someone asked me if it was a happy ending. I had to respond that I don’t really know. It wasn’t what Julia had planned, but it was definitely what God had intended all along. It’s a story that leaves you speculating about what all of their lives were like ten years down the road. My bet is that there are lingering consequences but most days are happily ever after. This book is definitely worth purchasing and savoring and then passing along to many others.
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Review 6 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Of Reluctant Reconciliation

Date:February 18, 2013
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Anonymous
Location:Columbus, GA
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
Set mostly on an island off the coast of South Carolina, "Moon over Edisto" is the story of a woman forced by her compassionate nature to return to the home she ran away from. When the woman who destroyed her family comes to her in desperation, Julia just can’t say no—though no one, except maybe her aunt, would have blamed her if she had. In a moment of crisis, Julia abandons overseas plans with her employer and fiancé in order to care for her three young half-siblings while their mother undergoes surgery. Back in her childhood home, she reconnects with the family and friends she left behind for a glamorous career as an artist in New York.
I loved this story of forgiveness and reconciliation. I especially loved the way God is portrayed as giving Julia what her heart desires through what seems to be great sacrifice. At one point, Julia thinks Marney is destroying her life a second time, when really she’s inadvertently offering what Julia most wants and needs.
As I reached the end of the story, I started hoping for a sequel, though. Julia’s story was complete as written, but the author left me with so many questions about Etta, Meg, Mary Ellen, and Jake. There’s plenty of material there for a second book, if this is what Hart has planned. I’ll be eager to read it if it shows up on the bookstore shelves.
I received a complimentary eCopy of this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for this review.
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Review 7 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

It's easier to say grace than to show it

Date:February 16, 2013
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mscourt
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
How long should we hold grudges? How do we forgive people when they’re not sorry for what they've done to us? What does it say about us if we can’t show love to the people who need it most? Moon Over Edisto has a broken family, a lot of angst, and a heaping dose of grace.
Told from five different viewpoints, the story centers on Julia, a Manhattan artist who has no plans to return to Edisto where her family was torn apart years ago. She reluctantly returns only so her mother won’t have to care for the children of the woman (Marney) who helped tear their family apart. At its core this story is about love and how one woman manages to show love to her worst enemy. In showing that love, Julia gets just what she didn't know she needed.
The author describes the beautiful Edisto setting and food very well. Makes me want to visit. One thing I couldn't get my arms around was Margaret/Meg’s change in personality. She was nasty for 90% of the book, so I just didn't believe her supposed change of heart. Also, while I appreciated Jed’s viewpoint since it added to the tiny romance element, I could have done without it. What I felt like was missing was Marney's perspective. She was depicted as this woman who did nothing but take from the Bennett family, both before and after she became ill. Where were her redeeming qualities? None of us are all bad or all good. It would've been very interesting to see her perspective. Finally, the conclusion was a little too neat. Still, I liked the overall message of the story.
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Review 8 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

heartwarming novel of love and forgiveness

Date:February 4, 2013
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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
What would be the most difficult thing to forgive someone for? That was the question that sparked the author to write this novel. For Julia Bennett and her sister, the hardest thing for them to forgive was their father betraying their family.
Twenty years ago, Julia had felt sorry for her college roommate, Marney, and invited her to spend the summer with the Bennetts. The family spent time in the summer on a South Carolina sea island, Edisto. Julie still remembers the pain she experienced when she came in and saw her father and her college roommate close, too close.
Now Julie is a recognized college art professor in New York and soon to be engaged. Like her sister and mother, she still deals with the hurt from her father's actions. Even though he has been dead for years, his actions continue to pierce Julia's heart. And then Julia receives a phone call from her elderly aunt, her father's sister. Marney is ill and someone needs to stay with the children, Julia's half sisters and brother.
When Julia finally decides to do back to Edisto, to the house she remembers from her childhood but now the home of her father's second family, her life is changed forever.
This is a well written and enjoyable novel. My heart went out to Julia. She was all set for a wonderful future when the results of her father's past actions invade her life. How could she possibly love those children? But God is faithful and Julia was willing.
There was just one aspect of the novel that was less than perfect. At the very end, well, it just got tied up to quickly and too easily.
There is a discussion guide at the end of the book so this would make a fine choice for reading groups.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
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Review 9 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Moon over Edisto

Date:February 3, 2013
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Cheryl
Location:Prospect,KY
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: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Julia Bennett's life as an artist in Manhattan was pretty much what she wanted. She had a show opening, a high profile art dealer boyfriend, and was content with that. Then her past begins knocking at her door in the form of her college friend and roommate, Marney, who destroyed the home life she thought pretty perfect until that summer almost 20 years ago.
But Marney needs Julia's help. She needs surgery and wants Julia to help care for her children during her recovery. Julia has very successfully avoided and has no desire to return to Edisto Island, SC to the place she and her family once vacationed, when they were a family. From her perspective, she owes Marney and her children absolutely nothing. Can Julia possibly begin to forgive Marney and, as a result, find true peace and happiness in her own life?
Each chapter is told by a different character's perspective (primarily three--Julia, Julia's mother Mary Ellen and Marney's middle child, Etta) which may be a bit confusing at first. However, I liked it after I got into the story. It allows the reader to easily see how both the events of the past and present, when seen through different eyes, are perceived differently and gives better understanding of the characters. The story was easy to read after sorting through the initial introduction of characters and a great escape to a simpler lifestyle. It is a wonderful story of forgiveness and restoration.
I originally requested this book because Edisto Island is a vacation spot I have just heard about and thought reading a book set in the area would give me a good feel for the island. I must say that I think Beth Hart has done a wonderful job of painting a picture of the area. It makes you want to go see the area for youself if you love the seaside. Close to Chareston, SC, Edisto is fully lowcountry, tranquil, and quaint. Perhaps Edisto is our spring break vacation spot?
I did receive this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was in no way obligated to leave a positive review.
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Review 10 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

magical

Date:January 22, 2013
Customer Avatar
cici
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Moon Over Edisto by Beth Webb Hart is the story of Julia, filled with betrayal and forgiveness. Both of which make for a magical tale unweaving as you read each word and turn each page. This believable plot of a woman coming to grips with betrayal literally knocking at her door unexpectedly hit me like a ton of bricks. We all have faced a situation that broke us and we just avoided it or let it eat us up a little everyday spoke volumes to me. Julia was betrayed by her best friend and father which left not one but two empty spots in her heart but also changed her drastically for the forseable future. Her friend and father fell in love and chose to create a life together at the cost of Julia and her family. As time passes, Julia cultivates a life worth living for and now with the sound of knocking at her door she is forced to face another life changing decision. Should she step in to care for the family that destroyed her or stay angry still with the past? I cannot write more but will say this is the kind of novel that will not only read beautifully but will change you, the reader, as well. This should be a book club selection.
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Review 11 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fabulous Read With Southern Charm!

Date:January 22, 2013
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tinybee
Location:Spring, Texas
Age:25-34
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 is certainly not the first offering from Beth Webb Hart, who boasts five published novels in her collection. Moon Over Edisto must be close to her heart since it takes place in her homestate of South Carolina. In the book we quickly meet up with Julia, our well-rounded and easy to relate to leading lady. Julia is plagued with unhappiness and has lost the zest that comes with a joyful life. But, she really doesn't realize it. Her own father ran off with her best friend twenty years before; and she's still in the trench of bitterness with morose attitude toward family. She hasn't returned to the place of the betrayal in over two centuries and tries to move past it in New York as an accomplished artist. Suprisingly, the "best friend" shows up at her door all these years later with a wild and unfathomable request. What that request is, I won't divulge. You'll have to read it to find out.
This is an excellent read. First and foremost, Hart's depiction of the South Carolina coast is breathtaking and will transport you right to Edisto Island. Her writing stirs within you that homesickness for something in your busy life that is missing - a tranquil place of longing and home. Hart evokes such visions of the East Coast that I want to plan my next family trip to this very island. I need to see Store Creek, the salt marsh, and take a ride down Peters Point Creek Road. Rarely, even scarcely, do you come across a modern author that can bring a place alive like Hart has. I feel like I know these people, really know them. The story and twists are remarkable and should not be missed. I endorse those book for woman, 14 and up. Forgiveness, Southern charm, and amazing lowcountry food are crammed into these pages. (I received this book free from Booksneeze.com as part of their blogging program. 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 Commision's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.")
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Review 12 for Moon over Edisto
This review is fromMoon Over Edisto - eBook.
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

The message is about love, family and forgivenes

Date:January 21, 2013
Customer Avatar
Nfam
Location:Morriston, Florida
Age:Over 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
Julia is preparing for a New York art show when a person from the past arrives on her doorstep. Marney was her best friend in college, spending summers on Edisto Island with her family, but things have changed. One summer Marney and Julia's father became lovers, married and had children, leaving Julia, her sister, Meg, and her mother devastated and uncomprehending. Now Marney's back. She has lung cancer and wants Julia to come home to Edisto Island and take care of the children. Can Julia summon enough forgiveness and love in her heart to return to the place of the betrayal for the sake of the children?
The setting and characters in the book are wonderful. You fall in love with Julia from the first page. She has worked hard to build a life for herself after her father's betrayal. Now that life is threatened. She struggles to leave the past behind, but can she cut herself off from the children?
The setting in the South Carolina low country is magical. You feel the heat, see the reflections on the water and hear the children's joy in being outdoors, fishing, swimming and playing. The author also describes the food. My mouth was watering over some of the meals. I wanted to go there, right then and be part of things.
I highly recommend this book. A talented and beautiful woman struggles with the demons from the past. You can't help but get involved in her pain.
I reviewed this book for the Thomas Nelson Booksneeze Program.
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Review 13 for Moon over Edisto
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

You won't want to miss this book.

Date:December 2, 2012
Customer Avatar
clement
Location:Texas
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
I just finished Beth’s Webb Hart’s latest book and love it. Exploring the low country and Charleston, SC culture through fiction is always a pleasure and Hart does it so well. One can tell that she is a “born and bred Charleston lady” as we say in the South. Such rich details and so well woven into the story. In “Moon” she has implanted Julia into my heart with her talent for character development. Sad that Julia was betrayed by her father and her best college friend when the two became lovers and got married. How like real life when years later, Julia was called on to put her career and marriage plans on hold and come to the aid of the children of that marriage. Will she summon the graec to do it? Can she return to Edisto, a place of wonderful childhood memories but also of heartbreak? You’ll love finding out.
I received an early copy of the book at a book festival and I’m glad I picked this up and read it.
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