Grace A. Johnson
Review: Letters to My Father by Crissie Ann Leonard
I was so excited when I began this novel to join Wiletta on her journey—because from the first moment I saw the title of this book, I knew it would be a lovely, inspiring story full of Jesus, and I was right! But what I didn’t expect was for it to be so gripping!
Letters to My Father was a smoothly written story that was both unique and engaging. The events flowed so well—from Wiletta discovering the letters to meeting up with all of the writers—and the pacing was even and balanced. It was well developed, even being only 88 pages, and the story kept my attention throughout!
I absolutely loved how full of Scripture and how very uplifting and touching this story was! Leonard didn’t shy away from the Word or from tackling tough issues from a biblical perspective, and I appreciated that. Not everyone’s story ended with a happily ever after, but others in their lives came to know Christ on a deeper level and Wiletta and her friend Faith were also touched by their stories in a way that was inspiring and realistic.
I know a lot of reviewers have said the concept was unrealistic, and while it probably hasn’t occurred yet, I have no doubt that it could through God’s divine intervention, and that’s what makes the concept of Letters to My Father that much more interesting! I appreciate Leonard taking a chance with the premise and writing a story that didn’t seem strange or speculative at all—merely pure and impactful.
On top of that, the story was very well-written, and Leonard did great with the first-person POV. I didn’t find a single mistake or typo, and her writing style was uniquely her own.
To be honest, this was definitely outside of my genre, so I probably wouldn’t have chosen to read this book, but I’m certainly glad I got the chance to! It’s a true gem!
All in all, Letters to My Father is a must-read for those struggling in life, those simply in need of a refreshing dose of Christ—like Wiletta—and those who are looking for a short but encouraging book!
Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided by the author, and I received compensation for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.
About the Book
Forty-three-year-old Wiletta Jayne is a God-loving woman in the midst of a spiritual drought. Her strong relationship with God has been disrupted by her chaotic lifestyle, and she feels lonely and lost. She decides to take some time off from work and visit the beach, where she hopes to reconnect with God’s voice. On the way, Wiletta feels a strong pull to visit a garage sale, where she finds a small stack of letters for sale. Knowing they are meant for her, she buys them and begins reading through them while on her vacation. In the letters, Wiletta discovers personal stories of despair, loneliness, joy, and more. God then instructs her to find the authors of the letters, so she reaches out to her best friend, Faith, who is a private investigator. Together, Wiletta and Faith set out to find these people, help them to know God’s love, and heal their hearts so they can seek him again. This novel tells the story of a woman led by God to a collection of letters written by strangers and the journey she takes with a friend to find and help the letters’ authors.
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About the Author
Crissie Ann Leonard is an accounting associate at a nonprofit firm who has loved literature since she could read. Building on that love and personal experiences, she has spent the last decade writing novels based on life, faith, growth, and healing. She has been a lifelong writer and first began with short stories and poetry, only to be sidetracked by life—joy and sorrow, love and loss. She lives in Ohio with her family. Her great loves are God, her cat Smokey, her family, and Chewbacca from Star Wars. When God’s purpose rose to meet her pain, this book was born.