If you’re into losing sleep, go ahead and read this book. A few bloggers had already shared how they stayed up into the wee hours of the morning reading Sally Bradley’s debut novel, but I thought to myself, I’ll totally be able to stop at a decent hour. Totally.
The dark circles under my eyes said otherwise.
The next day I was legitimately angry I had to go to work. Clearly they did not understand my desperate need to finish this book. Life can be so unfair.
Life has taught Miska Tomlinson that there are no honorable men. Her womanizing brothers, her absentee father, and Mark, the married baseball player who claims to love her—all have proven undependable. But Miska has life under control. She runs her editing business from her luxury condo, stays fit with daily jogs along Chicago’s lakefront, and in her free time blogs anonymously about life as a kept woman. Enter new neighbor Dillan Foster. Between his unexpected friendship and her father’s sudden reappearance, Miska loses control of her orderly life. Her relationship with Mark deteriorates, and Miska can’t help comparing him to Dillan. His religious views are so foreign, yet the way he treats her is something she’s longed for. But Dillan discovers exactly who she is and what she has done. Too late she finds herself longing for a man who is determined to never look her way again. When her blog receives unexpected national press, Miska realizes her anonymity was an illusion. Caught in a scandal about to break across the nation, Miska wonders if the God Dillan talks about would bother with a woman like her—a woman who’s gone too far and done too much.
Kept is one of the most honest novels I’ve read and not in a “share inappropriate details or use language for shock value” kind of way. It doesn’t need that, yet it doesn’t shy away from discussing how life is lived for many people today. It’s real life and shows how messy that can look. This isn’t a book where only one character needed redemption either. They all did in their own ways.
And that’s the beauty of this story and why I stayed up WAY too late reading it.
Yes, some of the characters were already believers, but last time I checked (meaning when I looked in the mirror), accepting Jesus is only the beginning. Life will continue to happen and we will always be in a refining process. We can sometimes be quick to judge, not want to understand or just wash our hands of things and people, but it’s often when we check our hearts and see people how God does, that we’re humbled and get to see transformation happen. And Miska’s story? So beautiful!
While this story falls under Contemporary Romance, y’all it is so much than a love story. It’s a wonderful story and a beautiful picture of redemption. This is a fresh and much need voice in the CBA market and I look forward to more of what Bradley writes!
Have you ever been pleasantly surprised by a book? I love when a debut book turns into an incredible surprise!
(With thanks to the lovely author for a copy of the book in exchange for my honest review)