Monday, December 21, 2009

"The Hand-Me-Down Family" by Winnie Griggs

First off I would like to talk about genres. What is your favorite? Do you read other genres or are you stuck in a rut like I was? My genre of choice since I was a little girl has been mysteries/suspense. The past ten years it has been mostly cozy mysteries (amateur sleuth/lighthearted). That is until I discovered Christian Fiction and blogging!

Because I have won several books that were not in my genre I felt obligated to read them. That was the best thing that has happened to me in the way of reading in a very long time! I have,read just about everything: mysteries, suspense, chick lit, romance, romantic comedies, historical, adventure - just to name a few.
My world has opened up! I have enjoyed all of the books I've read. I think about all I have missed by not keeping an open mind and trying other genres. I hope, after reading this, you too will keep an open mind and try something new in the near future.

Now having said all of this I want to give a review of The Hand-Me-Down Family by Winnie Griggs. This is a historical romance that takes place in California, 1888. Winnie takes the main character, Calley Gray, and puts her on a stage coach to meet her new husband by proxy. Before she arrives he loses his life in a fire and leaves his young daughter without a father. (she had already lost her mother, Calley's good friend).

Now, mind you, Calley knows no one in California and is shocked to say the least when she finds out he is dead. She meets his brother Jack Tyler who wants to take care of his brothers daughter as well as his sisters two children who also lost their parents in the fire. Most of the book is about Calley and Jack vying for the children. Neither think the other is capable of doing it alone. So they get married - for convenience.

Calley has a birthmark on her face that makes her feel no one would ever love her, so she has settled on just being a mother. But then she begins to have feelings for Jack - but Jack is going to leave to go back to his old job as soon as they are settled.

The rest you will have to find out for yourself. This is a book I would not have chosen in the past, just because it wasn't a mystery. I am so grateful that I am now open to reading other books. I would not have wanted to miss this one! I don't think you will either. Here is a link to Winnie's web site: Go over and take a look - you might just find yourself back in time!



  1. Sounds like an interesting book.

    As far as genre goes, I read all kinds of historical fiction - from YA to regular - and lots of romance in there - from the classics to every sub-genre you can think of.

    I read non-fiction books pretty regularly as well ~ everything from Biblical, devotional, homeschooling, writing... Then things kind of thin out. I read the occasional contemporary fictional book - whether it's romance, women's fiction or whatever. Then I have read a few "law" type fictional books - where the main theme is some kind of court case. I have also read a couple fantasy/sci fi type books/medical themed books and mystery/suspense. So I guess I read just about everything but horror. lol

  2. Hi Deborah, Just read this and wanted to say thanks for writing such a nice review on my book. The Hand-Me-Down Family was a real joy to write on a number of levels and the characters themselves dealt me a number of surprises as their story unfolded.

    And I'm so glad the book didn't disappoint you as you tried out a new-to-you genre!