Thursday, February 26, 2009

Review - Daisy Chain

This week, the

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance

is introducing

Daisy Chain

Zondervan (March 1, 2009)


Mary DeMuth


Mary E. DeMuth is an expert in Pioneer Parenting. She enables Christian parents to navigate our changing culture when their families left no good faith examples to follow.

Her parenting books include Authentic Parenting in a Postmodern Culture (Harvest House, 2007), Building the Christian Family You Never Had (WaterBrook, 2006), and Ordinary Mom, Extraordinary God (Harvest House, 2005).

Mary also inspires people to face their trials through her real-to-life novels, Watching The Tree Limbs (nominated for a Christy Award) and Wishing On Dandelions (NavPress, 2006).

Mary has spoken at Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference, the ACFW Conference, the Colorado Christian Writers Conference, and at various churches and church planting ministries. Mary and her husband, Patrick, reside in Texas with their three children. They recently returned from breaking new spiritual ground in Southern France, and planting a church.


The abrupt disappearance of young Daisy Chance from a small Texas town in 1977 spins three lives out of control—Jed, whose guilt over not protecting his friend Daisy strangles him; Emory Chance, who blames her own choices for her daughter’s demise; and Ouisie Pepper, who is plagued by headaches while pierced by the shattered pieces of a family in crisis.

In this first book in the Defiance, Texas Trilogy, fourteen-year-old Jed Pepper has a sickening secret: he’s convinced it’s his fault his best friend Daisy went missing. Jed’s pain sends him on a quest for answers to mysteries woven through the fabric of his own life and the lives of the families of Defiance, Texas. When he finally confronts the terrible truths he’s been denying all his life, Jed must choose between rebellion and love, anger and freedom.

Daisy Chain is an achingly beautiful southern coming-of-age story crafted by a bright new literary talent. It offers a haunting yet hopeful backdrop for human depravity and beauty, for terrible secrets and God’s surprising redemption.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Daisy Chain, go HERE

This is a haunting and achingly compelling book about lives that aren't all sunshine and roses. It reminded me in some ways of To Kill a Mockingbird, as both novels present a less-than-ideal world as viewed through the raw lens of a child trying to make sense of it all. As a mom, I found it difficult to read at times. I found myself hurting with Jed as he tries to process the pain in his life - Daisy's disappearance, his preacher-father's public personna contrasted with the man he becomes behind closed doors, the interactions with the other folks in the town, his desperate longing and tentative attempts to be a man - and as he tries to come to terms with how God fits into all of it. On page 252, he wonders,
Should he pray? To God? Again? What good would it do? Would God even hear a prayer from someone who yelled at dogs? Hap said prayer didn't change God so much as it changed you. Well, if that was true, and Hap was a praying man like he said he was, God hadn't seemed to keep up his end of the bargain. Hadn't changed Hap ... for the better ... as far as Jed could see, that is.
Hope and grace come to Jed from unexpected sources. Among other things, this book reminds us of the importance of looking beyond the surface and allowing God to use us to be "tangible proof that [a hurting individual] matters to someone."

Happy Thoughtful Reading!


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Natalie said...

I may need your daughter to double check to make sure I got my lines and syllables correct for the Haiku :)

Have a wonderful Thursday, Linda!!

Mary DeMuth said...

Thanks, Linda, for reading the book and offering your review. I so appreciate it.

Mel said...

hmmm now this book is one that might intrigue me and break my heart at the same time.

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

Sounds like a good one!

Sandy @ The Scoop on Balance said...


Thanks for stopping by my blog today. I don't know how "impressed" you should be about my parenting--but I do my best, with a LOT of help from God. :)

I need to come back and check out some of the books you recommend. I tend to stick to Christian Self Help, and therefore, feel like I'm on a continual self-improvement project.

I would like to read some good fiction at some point. Who's your fav????

Love ya!