Saturday, June 10, 2006

Book Review: A Stranger in the Family

I just read a wonderful book called, A Stranger in the Family written by Patricia McLinn. I mean, it's one of those books that when you finish, you think, “I'm definitely going to read that again and everything else this author has ever written that I can get my hands on!” and then you’ll want to rush out and buy all her books, just based on this one here. I love those kinds of books, don't you?

The story’s about a man who finds out that his high school sweetheart had a child and gave him up for adoption, sixteen years previously. Now, he has to decide whether or not he should interfere in his son’s life. To make matters worse, he finds himself attracted to his son’s older, pretty adopted sister. From this concept, McLinn weaves an intricate tale involving moral choices, lessons in letting go and learning to trust as well as running the full gamut of emotions from joy to love to pain to hope and forgiveness. She doesn’t disappoint for a minute and I couldn’t put her story away! It was just that good. I didn’t want to go to sleep until I finished it.

I don’t want to give away anymore of the story, so I won’t, but I can tell you that McLinn’s writing is flawless. This was book one in the Bardville Trilogy. I can’t wait to read the next two books in the series, but I have to wait for them to come out in e-book format, A Stranger to Love and The Rancher Meets His Match.

This book was beautifully written with rich 3-D characters who had deep personal issues that had to be worked out in order for the characters to mature and that made them seem very real to life and believable. The situations were credible and their reactions to their circumstances were true to life. Nothing was overdone or blown out of proportion for effect. Neither were the serious issues underplayed. She really did an excellent job of balancing and developing the emotions in her story. This is the kind of book you want to curl up under the shade of a leafy oak with a cool margarita, er, I mean, ice tea with a squeeze of lemon and a sprig of mint as you read whiling away the hours with a group of fascinating characters you’ll never forget.

McLinn’s writing is so tight, I felt like I was right there with her characters on the ranch in Wyoming. McLinn’s writing is smooth and flawless. She left me with a deeply sated feeling, as if I’d just eaten a seven course meal topped off with my favourite dessert, Black Forest German Chocolate cake with raspberry-chocolate pudding filling. Yummy! For $5, I couldn’t have asked for better. McLinn is one of those master storytellers and it’s obvious that she enjoyed writing A Stranger in the Family.

I bought this book in an e-book format at, but you can also find it and a host of other Patricia McLinn books at Belgrave House,


Anonymous Patricia McLinn said...

Dear Jessica,

I am thrilled and humbled to read this post (after just coming across it while searching for old reviews of books I'm bringing out as Kindle editions.)

A STRANGER IN THE FAMILY and the two following book in the trilogy -- A STRANGER TO LOVE and THE RANCHER MEETS HIS MATCH -- are all available as e-books at

I hope your writing is going well -- and I hope you know that you've made my day -- my week!

All the best,
Patricia McLinn

4:21 PM  

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