Wednesday, February 11, 2015

"The Color of Joy" by Julianne MacLean

The Color of Joy is USA Today bestselling author Julianne MacLean’s eighth installment in her popular Color of Heaven series, which has delivered many happy sighs to thousands of readers worldwide and left them clamoring for more. Bring tissues and prepare to be up all night reading this fast-paced, emotionally charged tale about the obstacles we encounter in everyday life and the real life magic that helps us to triumph over them.

After rushing to the hospital for the birth of their third child, Riley and Lois James anticipate one of the most joyful days of their lives. But things take a dark turn when their newborn daughter vanishes from the hospital. Is this payback for something in Riley’s troubled past? Or is it something even more mysterious?

As the search intensifies and the police close in, strange and unbelievable clues about the whereabouts of the newborn begin to emerge, and Riley soon finds himself at the center of a surprising turn of events that will challenge everything he once believed about life, love, and the existence of miracles.

My review:
I think each of Julianne MacLean's books in The Color of Heaven series should come standard with a package of tissues.  The Color of Joy is no exception.  MacLean delivered another emotional, edge-of-your-seat, deeply felt story.  I intended to start the book at night and then finish it the next day, but the story flowed so easily and the suspense was so riveting that I found myself finishing it in one sitting.
We met the hero Riley briefly in The Color of the Season, when he reunited with his sister, Holly, and his mother.  This is his story - which picks up with his wife in labor with their third child. The majority of the primary story line takes place during a single day, but you almost don't realize it with the flow of the action and the flash backs to previous times.  This story shows the parallel lives of two mothers-to-be and the heartbreak the mothers, and couples, faces.
The Color of Joy introduces Jenn and her sister Sylvie (remember Sylvie, because we get her story next).  After deciding as a couple not to have kids, Jenn and her husband, Jake, find themselves pregnant.  This couple experiences an extremely emotional journey, including twists and turns you just don't expect, and an ending that no one saw coming. There was no villan in the end, only victims and heroes! And several happy endings!
The extreme elation, anger, and fear felt by the characters in this story kept this reader enraptured from beginning to end.  And true to every Color of Heaven book, circumstances that reaffirm your faith in a higher power are woven throughout the story. What a beautiful tie back to Josh and Holly's story from Color of the Season. All I can say is, "out of the mouths of babes."
In the end, a story of fear transforms into a story of faith and forgiveness, strength and courage, and love.
Disclosure: I received an free copy in exchange for an honest review. 

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