Review: The Names They Gave Us

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Summary:

Lucy Hansson was ready for a perfect summer with her boyfriend, working at her childhood Bible camp on the lake. But when her mom’s cancer reappears, Lucy falters—in faith, in love, and in her ability to cope. When her boyfriend “pauses” their relationship and her summer job switches to a different camp—one for troubled kids—Lucy isn’t sure how much more she can handle. Attempting to accept a new normal, Lucy slowly regains footing among her vibrant, diverse coworkers, Sundays with her mom, and a crush on a fellow counselor. But when long-hidden family secrets emerge, can Lucy set aside her problems and discover what grace really means?

My Thoughts:

I’m so for 3 for 3 on loving Emery Lord’s books. I haven’t yet read her first book, but the other three have completely blown me away and I think I’m eventually going to need to read her debut. I thought The Start of Me and You was adorable, but also showed a strong picture of a girl going through grief. I loved how When We Collided brought bipolar disorder to the forefront of the story. And now…now she’s used cancer to cause a teen to question her religious faith and I’m completely here for it.

Here’s the thing- as a Christian, I very rarely read Christian fiction. The characters are rarely realistic or easy to relate to. That’s not the case with Lucy. She’s done everything right, but yet her mother’s cancer has returned. Lucy’s journey of her faith is one that I think most people go through at some point and it feels real.

I will say that I wanted a bit more from the ending, but it wasn’t to the point that I was disappointed. The ending is just too open for me and almost felt abrupt after a lot of build-up. Either way, this was still easily a 5 star read for me and one that I loved and will return to one day and re-read.

-M