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Publisher's Summary

Out of the deepest grief, the greatest love. A widowed woman in her forties, Lee Reston has overcome many obstacles to raise her 3 children and run a prosperous business. Tragedy comes once again when a motorcycle accident kills her eldest son. Lee turns to his best friend for comfort, and as they mourn together, she finds emotions stirring within her that she never thought she would feel again.

© by Lavyrle Spencer, 1994; (P) 1994 Dove Audio, Inc.; Cover Design © Andrew Newman

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Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    19
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  • 1 Stars
    1

Performance

  • 3 out of 5 stars
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    9
  • 4 Stars
    4
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    4
  • 2 Stars
    4
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    6

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • M
  • Aberdeen, WA, USA
  • 06-06-04

Depressing to listen to

Beings as Spencer is one of my all-time favorite authors, I was more than happy to plunk down my $$ to listen to this unabridged story. I downloaded it, installed it on my iPod and walked off into the sunset.

Wow. I found the story, as narrated by Rush to be so absolutely depressing I had to give up listening to it about halfway through the story because, while the story IS somewhat depressing (loss of a family member) I remain unconvinced that Lee Reston sounds something akin to Eeyore no matter what's going on in her life!

It's a much happier book (as the story progresses and they move beyond their loss and grief) and I finally gave up listening to the audio book and pulled out the good ol' hardback and gave them voices of their own.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

terrible reader

Why is this elderly person doing the narration for this book? I cannot listen to it ... Lee Reston is in her 40's and but the reader is just too old to make it believable.
The book and story are fabulous.

And HEY - why can't we get the rest of Layverly Spencer UNABRIDGED?

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Jane
  • Chicago, IL, United States
  • 09-27-13

A wonderful relationship - much more than lust.

A full story, a good story. This is romance with a womens fiction feel. There is a lot of grief in the first third of the book. A mother Lee loses her 25 year old son Greg in a motorcycle accident. Chris is Greg’s roommate and coworker. Chris mourns the loss with Lee and her family. I don’t want to read books about grief and depressing topics. But this was less troubling than I expected. The author wasn’t focused on making me cry or feel bad. Instead the funeral and death was more of a vehicle for Chris’ and Lee’s paths to cross, repeatedly. Their actions, interactions, and help for each other and compassion for each other was so sensitive and loving to watch. It was wonderful watching them fall in love, even though Lee resisted - for good reasons. She was 45 Chris was 30. Yet it was a wonderful love. It made me want to fall in love like that.

There were interesting side stories about their families. Lee’s 23 year old daughter wanted to date Chris. She had no idea that Chris only had eyes for her mother. Lee’s 14 year old son had unexpected and fun reactions. There is a touching side story about Chris helping a troubled teen.

NARRATOR:
Sadly the narrator was a bad fit. Barbara Rush has a quivering deep elderly lady voice. It did not fit a sensual sexy woman falling in love. It did not fit the sex scenes - think 70 year old lady having sex. Also she overly sweetened her voice for Lee’s dialogue - like a Snow-White-Disney-princess type. It didn’t feel right for Lee or her children.

The recording sounded odd. It had a muffled sound like talking through a blanket. I got used to it after a while, or it got better.

Genre: grief with contemporary romance, older woman younger man

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Poor recording

Would you consider the audio edition of Family Blessings to be better than the print version?

The print version is much better. The recording was poor and the choice of a narrator was not a good match. The book began without stating the name of the book, author nor narrator. The recording sounded old with static.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Family Blessings?

The most memorable moment was when is initially trying to cope with her son's death.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Barbara Rush?

Barbara Rush is a talented and classy actor but not a good match for this book. I would suggest Susan Ericksen or Theresa Plummer or perhaps Amy McFadden

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Lee's struggle to cope with Greg's death was incredibly sad.

Any additional comments?

I love this author and wish more of her books were available in the unabridged version. It was a sad day when this author retired.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

favorites

I love LaVyrle Spencer; no on I know can write of love as she can. Though this story had very sad parts in it; I adore the presentation of the "unsuitable age difference", the couple involved realizing the attraction and caring themselves, then facing their world with it. It's a difficult subject; and LaVyrle does her usual great job with it. Very "identifiable".....each character is so real. A great, heartfelt read. The reason I didn't give it 5 stars is because the recorded quality is so poor because it is so old.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    out of 5 stars
  • Barbara
  • Reading, PA, USA
  • 05-22-10

Family Blessings

Very good. Another Spencer hit.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Karyn
  • Westport, CT, USA
  • 10-03-06

Satisfying romance

This book begins with the tragic death of a well-loved young man, so it starts as a real tearjerker. I think that those who have lost a loved one will get a lot of comfort in their recognition of the grief that Spencer describes so well. But after that painful beginning, it's a very satisfying book with likeable characters and a believeable romance.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Patricia
  • Bayfield, Colorado United States
  • 01-02-06

Family Blessings

While I think LaVyrle Spencer is an extremely talented fiction writer, I didn't care much for this book. It is a sad story but I didn't care for what she did with it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

great book

Love this book! it has always been one of my faves!
wish there was a part 2!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great love story

While I always enjoy reading Lavyrle Spencer's books, the reader for this story was not a good pick. She was obviously an older (60+) woman and simply didn't have the pizzazz needed to carry off the story.