Friday, September 11, 2009

The Friday Five

This week's Friday Five is:

Five things I loved about Stray Affections:

1. The conflict between Cassie and her mother felt very real.

2. The way the author balanced a large cast, but made you feel as if you knew each character well.

3. The dogs. I grew up a dog person, though I now have a cat I adore, and the dogs in this story really tugged at my heart.

4. The fact that this book didn't deal with any marriages that were falling apart. That seems to be such an overwhelming theme in women's fiction these days, and it's refreshing to take a breath from marriage-in-crisis to enjoy a story with characters in solid marriages.

5. The snowglobe mystery. I'm so guessing on this one. Does the character see in the snowglobe what they most long for? What they most need? And have we met the sequel characters?

ABOUT THE BOOK: In Stray Affections, the last thing that Cassandra expects out of her Sunday is to be mesmerized at a collectors’ convention by a snowglobe. She’s enjoying some shopping time, with husband Ken at home tending their brood of four young boys, when she’s utterly charmed by the one-of-a kind globe containing figures of three dogs and a little girl with hair the color of her own. She can’t resist taking the unique globe home—even if means wrestling another shopper for it!
The beautiful snowglobe sparks long-dormant memories for Cassie, of her beloved Grandpa Wonky, the stray she rescued as a child and the painful roots of her combative relationship with her mother, “Bad Betty” Kamrowski. Life in Wanonishaw, Minnesota is never dull, though, and Cassie keeps the recollections at bay, busy balancing her boys, her home daycare operation, and being a good friend to best pal Margret. But after a strange—flurrious, as Cassie deems it—moment happens with the remarkable snowglobe, Cassie and the people she loves are swirled into a tumultuous, yet grace-filled, and life-changing journey.

“As a believer, I know the power of forgiveness and new beginnings, and of a God, and family and friends, who love me the way I am,” Charlene Ann Baumbich says. “The heartbeat of change flows through those wonderful gifts.”

With the quirky, close-knit Midwestern small-town feel that made Charlene Ann Baumbich’s acclaimed Dearest Dorothy novels so popular, Stray Affections invites readers to experience the laughter and the healing of second chances.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Charlene Ann Baumbich is a popular author and speaker and an award-winning journalist. In addition to her Dearest Dorothy series of novels, she has written seven nonfiction books of humor and inspiration. A bungee-jumping, once motorcycle-owning grandma and unabashed dog lover, Charlene lives with her husband and rescued dog Kornflake in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. She loves telling stories, laughing whenever possible, and considers herself a Wild Child of God.

You can watch a video of the author introducing her new book by clicking HERE.

You can find out more about this title or purchase the book by clicking HERE.

MY REVIEW: As you can tell, I really enjoyed this book. If your head is stuck in critical/editing mode as a reader, you're probably going to be a little frustrated with the lack of close third person POV, but I found this story so charming and engrossing, and realized that a quasi-omniscient POV worked so well for he story, that I didn't mind. The author's voice is engaging and the setting is wonderful. She set the story in Southeast Minnesota - My Stomping Grounds! And I didn't find anything jarring, and many things so very SE MN that I knew the author had to have visited here at the very least. I recommend Stray Affections, and in October, I'll be giving away a copy here on the blog, so stay tuned.


  1. I really like how you put the five things you like about the book. Cool way to review--it hooked me! Have a great weekend!

  2. Sounds like a great book! Thanks for the review! Hope you have a wonderful weekend!