Jade is the 2nd in a series of 4 books by Marilynn Griffith. I haven’t read the first one yet, but as each one is a completely separate story, I could follow it easily. Here is a little about the book from the back cover:
Designer Lily Chau doesn’t know if she’s finally got it together or if life is starting to unravel. With a successful boyfriend and a great job at up-and-coming fashion house Garments of Praise, it seems she has the perfect pattern for success. But her mother’s health is failing, her boyfriend just won’t pop the question, and being a pattern maker is a far cry from having a clothing line of her own. Lily is sure her hands are just too full to draw her deepest dreams.
Raya and Chenille, Lily’s pals at Garments of Praise, offer plenty of advice and sympathy. And Jean, Lily’s co-worker and second mom, even goes behind Lily’s back to boost her chances of success. When she’s chosen for the reality show The Next Design Diva, it seems like the chance of a lifetime for Lily. But the mysterious designer chosen to mentor her sends her spinning. He’s fresh, fine – and way off limits. Suddenly Lily’s life goes from carefully patterned to nothing but a tangle of threads.
My review: I enjoyed this book. I picked it up as just something to read, and then ended up being surprised by the depth of the issues such as friendship (even when someone storms away from you slamming the door behind them) and frustrated dreams (that when they start becoming reality are sometimes scary and sometimes not what you expected).
One issue that the author dealt with that I particularly appreciated was depression and mental health in general. This may be the first Christian novel I have read that has the main character taking a prescription drug to help her deal with her depression. Most characters will turn their problems over to the Lord and they make it through. Don’t get me wrong – that is fantastic and for the most part that is what we all need to do. However, I also believe in the value of medication for depression in some cases and I strongly believe a Christian should never feel a sense of guilt or failure if they need to use counseling and/or medication to help them through.
Another interesting point of this novel is the age of the main characters. They are much older than the typical romance story. I like that because, well, life doesn’t always turn out the way we expected, does it? And yet it can still have wonderful surprises.
Lily goes through many painful things in her life. Yet her hope and strength come from the Lord. I ended up really enjoying this book, and look forward to reading more of Marilynn Griffith. Who has 7 children, by the way. 7 children and still finds time to write? Puts me right to shame! Hope you will look into her books and appreciate them as I did.