Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Smoke by Catherine McKenzie

Her whole life was about fire, forest fires- detecting them, fighting them, investigating them. At least it had been before she had given it up to fight for something else. Elizabeth is the main character in Catherine McKenzie's Smoke and things have not been going as planned in her life. Unfortunately, it seems as if Elizabeth's work has come to her this time. The small, picturesque town in which Elizabeth lives with her husband, the town where he grew up, is on the edge of a huge fire that may or may not be controllable. We also meet Mindy, Elizabeth's former friend, who is feeling unsure and perhaps a bit useless in her life as a stay-at-home mom to a distant teenaged son and a young daughter whose early-in-life health troubles still keep Mindy up at night. She yearns for purpose and hopes that helping a local man will provide that.

While I would categorize this as "Chick Lit", something I don't always like, it was a very enjoyable read. I was anxious to learn what would happen to each of the characters. It also had a slight mystery tone to it as the reader waited to learn who was really responsible for the fire that just might destroy the whole town. I particularly enjoyed the theme of a woman searching for her purpose. Elizabeth loves her work, but chooses marriage and family. Mindy loves her family, but still wishes for fulfilling work outside of the home. Neither is right or wrong. Each woman must decide what is best for herself at the time. And what is right for now may change in the future.

This book would make for a wonderful vacation read and it was perfect for my last book of 2016. Please let me know if you enjoy it, too.

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