Tuesday 30 March 2021

Jenna's Journey - Karen Kelly Boyce - The Hope Trilogy Book 1

Jenna's Journey
The Hope Trilogy Book 1
Karen Kelly Boyce
Jay Winters (Illustrator)
Pen It! Publications, LLC
ISBN 9781954004641

Over the last few years, I have read all of the books in the Sisters of the Last Straw series by Karen Kelly Boyce. And greatly enjoyed them. I was interested in this volume from when I fist saw the cover. This book was a complete surprise and wonderful read. I picked it up without even reading the description, which by the way is:

“Jenna's Journey is the first book in The Hope trilogy. Jenna, a disabled orphan, finds herself in a chapel where she asks Mary if she will be her mother. Instantly, she is transported to a land where she begins a quest to find the answers she seeks. Along the way, she encounters a rosary tree, a protective bread, and a new spiritual friend. Her greedy aunt and whining cousin bring some comic relief to this adorable story for middle-grade children, teenagers, and adults alike.”

And not since reading The Pilgrims Progress or Hinds’ Feet on High Places has a story of this style and type enthralled me so. And though Pilgrims is a single story, Hind’s Feet is the first in a long series. And this is the first in a planned trilogy. Once I started reading this book, I could hardly put it down.

I started the book one evening and stayed up way too late reading because I could not put it down. And the next day, I read straight through both my coffee breaks and lunch to finish the book. And was desperate to find out if there are more books planned and if so, is there a date for the second. The chapters in this book are:

Jenna Comes Home
Bertha Blossom’s Bodacious Bounty
Train Tracks and Peculiar Places
The Forgetting Fog
Firefly Moments
Bright Lights
Showers of Shame
Washed Clean
Simple Riches
The Song of Bread
Shining Armor & Slithering Snakes
Beautiful Beads
The Return Home
Voices from the Past 

The story begins with Jenna waking up in the hospital after an accident. She has no feeling or movement from the waist down. Both her parents were killed in the accident. And just as things start to turn around and she is about to head home, she encounters an aunt she has never met, who only cares about the trust fund she can use for her own purposes. While on her way to a boarding school she has a visit to a chapel, and she has mystical experience while looking at a stained glass image of Our Lady of Grace. 

That experience is an adventure and allegory of the highest quality. And Jenna’s experience after it ends is the beginning of the turning of a new page. But to find out about that experience in the strange land of Empyrian. You will need to read this wonderful little volume.

An excellent story written for tweens, and teens but a book all of us can enjoy and learn from. A great example of Catholic or Christian fiction. A book I highly recommend!

Note: This book is part of a series of reviews 2021 Catholic Reading Plan!

Books by Karen Kelly Boyce:
A Bend in the Road: A Year's Journey Through Breast Cancer
Down Right Good
According to Thy Word
Into the Way of Peace
In the Midst of Wolves

Sisters of the Last Straw Series:
The Cause of the Haunted Chapel
The Case of the Missing Novice
The Case of the Stolen Rosaries
The Case of the Flower Phantom
The Case of the Christmas Tree Capers
The Case of the Easter Egg Escapades
The Case of the Campground Creature
The Case of the Mixed-Up Marathon

The Hope Trilogy:


1 comment:

Jacqueline Vick said...

I've read several of the Sisters of the Last Straw books. Sometimes simplicity is the best way to get points across. This sounds like a good read.