I have a uniquely fascinating book to share with you from one of my favorite authors, Chautona Havig. Her latest book, Jack: A Lot of Hullabaloo on the Prairie is the first book in her new series, Ballads from the Hearth. It is so much fun while also being quite thought-provoking on the subject of forgiveness.
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Title: Jack: A Lot of Hullabaloo on the Prairie | Author: Chautona Havig | Publication Date: January 25, 2016 | Publisher: Wynneword House | Pages: 278
Summary from the publisher: Jack Clausen has led a hard, lonely life, but he’s content with a good job as a cowboy, a faithful horse, and the Lord. But when a near tragedy flings him into the path of a lovely young lady, Jack’s resolve to stay single and alone wavers.
Hazel Meissner has everything a young man could hope for–kindness, gentleness, and just enough playfulness to keep things interesting, but when accusations tear at their relationship, Hazel’s true strength emerges.
Without forgiveness, many lives will be irrevocably changed.
Jack is the first book in the Ballads from the Hearth series. This book was inspired by the old ballad, “Cowboy Jack” and Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing.
This is one of those books that I read solely because I trust the author. And I was not disappointed! I am not really a fan of cowboy stories. I’m even less of a fan of heart-wrenching ballads and I’ve never really enjoyed Shakespeare so when I read the inspiration for Chautona’s upcoming book, I must admit to being a bit skeptical, but because I trust her, I agreed to read an advance reader copy and share my honest review.
This book was so much better than I expected! I loved the characters Chautona created, and I especially appreciated the depth of the secondary characters! The story was complex and multi-faceted and was actually uplifting rather than depressing. The emotion never seemed over-the-top as I feared it might.
The best part of the book for me was how Chautona used it to explore themes of forgiveness from several different angles. I loved how she showed that sometimes forgiveness is a quick choice, sometimes it’s a long, oft-repeated choice, and sometimes it’s just there – an unexplainable gift from the Lord.
I’m honestly surprised at how much I enjoyed this book and that I can heartily recommend it even to skeptics like me. I’m even looking forward to re-reading it! It’s a really great story!
Favorite Quotes from the Book
There are so many memorable quotes in this book that I was having a really hard time deciding which ones to share. Then I remembered that Chautona had made an entire Pinterest board full of beautiful quotes from this book! I encourage you to check them out and you’ll see some of the wonderful nuggets from this book. I’d love to hear which one of them is your favorite!
About the Author: Chautona Havig
Chautona Havig lives in a small, remote town in California’s Mojave Desert with her husband and seven of her nine children. When not writing, she enjoys paper crafting, sewing, and the knowledge that someday she’ll be able to retire from home education. She can be found at chautona.com.