“Ivy blinked at the card, then got to work opening it up. Inside, she found a short note written in a childlike scrawl. ‘Fear not, for I have redeemed you. I have called you by name, you are mine. Isaiah 43:1 God wrote these words for you, Ivy. Love, Sara.’” from A Broken Kind of Beautiful by Katie Ganshert
Katie Ganshert’s latest novel centers on the spiritual journey of cover girl Ivy Clark. Ivy belongs to “a world that took and took so subtly and connivingly that a person didn’t notice until there was nothing left to give.”
“Men dressed in Armani, women clad in the latest and greatest fashion trends, all standing in small cliques, holding drinks and hiding personal agendas behind pretense and gossip. She understood the rules and subtle nuances. She’d played the game since she was fourteen.”
But now at the age of twenty-five, Ivy finds herself washed up and scrambling for a job . . . any job. She’s willing to do whatever it takes to get her modeling career back on track—even if that means hurting the only people willing to show her kindness—her long-suffering stepmother Marilyn, her new friend Sara, and Davis Knight, the talented photographer who sees past her cold, beautiful shell to the vulnerable person inside.
Like the woman at the well, Ivy uses men to medicate her hurting spirit. Though Ivy acknowledges this in words, it’s quite another thing for her to finally see the ugliness in her own heart. As God rips away her facade, Ivy’s anguish is painful to read. But her epiphany is so satisfying that it’s well worth the journey.
I was surprised at how deeply this story hooked me. The more I read, the more I wanted the sweet girl to be pretty & resented the mean girl’s beauty. And I began to feel again that self-consciousness over my acne-scarred face that stunted my spiritual growth when I was young. That’s when I knew the author had done her job well!
In our youth and beauty obsessed culture, this is a story that resonates with the powerful truth that God “sees not as man sees. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” (I Samuel 16:7)
I know that once I “release” A Broken Kind of Beautiful to my students, I won’t see the book again for a very long time! My high school girls are going to love it!
What I liked best . . .
- Marilyn’s faithfulness & unconditional love in the face of repeated rejections
- Davis Knight, the kindhearted hero with an eye for true beauty
- His sweet sister Sara
- The sea turtle story
- Ivy’s friendship with Twila, a tiny cancer patient with a big heart
My favorite quotes . . .
“God’s not in the business of pampering His children. He’s in the business of perfecting them.”
“This world was never meant to be comfortable. It was never meant to feel like home. It took darkness to show me the truth. One day I’ll open my eyes and I’ll see Jesus.”
“God gave you a special eye for His beauty. You see things the rest of us don’t. You capture it, and then share it with the world.”
God gave you a special eye for His beauty.
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What you should do next . . .
About the author: Katie Ganshert graduated from the University of Wisconsin in Madison with a degree in education, and worked as a fifth grade teacher for several years before staying home to write full-time. She was born and raised in the Midwest, where she lives with her husband, their young son, and their goofy black lab, Bubba. When she’s not busy writing or playing or reading or snuggling, she is obsessing over the paperwork and the waiting that comes with adoption. She is the author of the Carol Award winning and Christy nominated Wildflowers from Winter and Wishing on Willows.
You can connect with Katie . . .
Thanks for taking time to read my review! What have you been reading lately, friends?
This week I might be linking up with Inspire Me Monday, Sharing His Beauty, Mommmy Monday Blog Hop, Monday Musings, Hear It on Sunday, Unite @Rich Faith Rising, Modest Mondays, Book Notes, Make Your Home Sing Monday, Salt & Light, Manic Monday, Teach Me Tuesdays, Titus 2 Tuesdays, Teaching What Is Good, What I Learned This Week, Titus 2sday Link-up, Living Proverbs 31, Busy Monday, Raising Homemakers, Deep Roots at Home, Imperfect Prose, Wholehearted Home Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesday, Wise Woman Wednesday, Three Word Wednesday, Works for Me Wednesday, A Little R&R, Capture Your Journey Wednesday, The Barn Princess, Adorned from Above Wednesday Link Party, Whimsy Wednesday, In Him We Live, Juana Mikels Wednesday Link-up, Hope in Every Season Homemaking Party, Thursday Favorite Things, Thriving Thursday, Hearts for Home, Throwback Thursday, Thoughtful Thursday, Cozy Book Hop, Booknificent Thursday, Tell His Story, Thought Provoking Thursday, Raising Mighty Arrows, From House to Home Link Party, Share the Joy Thursday, Time Travel Thursday, Thrive @Home Link Up, Grace at Home, Faith-filled Friday, Fellowship Friday, Friendship Friday, Freedom Friday, Womanhood w/ Purpose Friday Link Up, Essential Friday Link-up, Saturday Sharefest, Sunday Stillness, and Heart Reflected.