Firefly Island by Lisa Wingate Bethany House ISBN978-0-7642-0823-2

It all happened so quickly. Mallory Hale, a Capitol Hill staffer, meets Daniel Webster Everson, falls in love with him, marries him and becomes stepmother to his young son, Nick. As if this wasn’t enough of a life change, the new family is moving to Moses Lake, a small town in rural Texas. Daniel has accepted a position from the mysterious and eccentric Jack West whose wife and stepson vanished without a trace. Firefly Island, by Lisa Wingate, is the story of what happens after they arrive in Moses Lake. Initially, Mallory tries to view the move as an adventure. Upon arrival at the West ranch she quickly qualifies the move to be a disaster and a horrible mistake. The ranch house designated as theirs is filthy and infested with rodents and insects. The town of Moses Lake offers few amenities. Washington DC it is not.
Over time Mallory and Daniel struggle to adjust to each other. The author skillfully guides the reader through Mallory’s journey to become a mother to Nick. She finds herself evolving. “The changing of my heart into a mother’s heart.” She questions how she will “fit in” in the community of Moses Lake. In her previous life she could choose her friends, associates and neighborhood. “In this tiny town, the people were too few to be divided. They had no choice but to live all together in the pockets of civilization tucked among the rocks and hills.” Her dilemma? Is this how she wants to live? All this is compounded by the fact that Jack West makes her nervous as does his recently arrived son.
A near tragic accident raises many questions as to the cause and Mallory decides to search for answers. What she discovers leads to interesting results.
This is a beautifully written novel. Vivid description of Moses Lake bring it to life and actually place the reader there. Realistic secondary characters, who are unique and have interesting personalities, are charismatic. Mallory’s search for her identity doesn’t go smoothly and is often a source of conflict. Her journey, though, makes for a great reading experience.

I received this book at no charge from Bethany House and I give this review of my own free will.


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