*I was given a pre-publication copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review, which follows.*
“Rejoin all your favourite characters in this fourth book of the popular Crater Lake series – an intergenerational saga that takes readers on a roller-coaster ride of emotions.
After a sabbatical from trauma counselling, Izzy Montgomery is back to work. Her first client is the new priest at St. Bertha’s parish. Lisa-Marie is convinced that after past heartbreak, she and Justin will never be more than friends. Micah Camp gets a career counsellor, but Alison is off to an unfortunate start. All Brigit wanted when she arrived at Crater Lake was that her daughter would fit in. Now she reflects on the downside of getting her wish.
An overnight hike up the Cat’s Cradle doesn’t turn out as expected. Wedding plans go awry, a child experiences loss and a young boy embraces the sacrifice required of best friends.
Amid laughter and tears, people discover that in the search for identity, acceptance, and belonging, the compass that points true leads to the most unlikely of spots.”
The Crater Lake gang is back! This time the book mimics life and the changes and consequences of human decisions. The central message for me emphasized the idea that life isn’t simple or defined in black and white terms. No Compass to Right deals with those gray areas where lessons are learned. Meanwhile, the reader gets a sneak peek into the characters as they grow into multi-dimensional individuals, with problems to solve and learn from.
There were many storylines to follow from characters I had waited for closure on. Lisa Marie and Justin are still trying to come to grips with their feelings and emotions. Izzy and Liam have settled into raising Sophie; Lisa Marie, and Liam’s daughter. Sophie comes across as a typical young girl, blessed with the love of a large family. When the child is forced to learn the meaning of love and loss, it was a poignant moment, raw and unfiltered.
Robby and Tabby’s friendship increases and the two have become inseparable. Robby’s power to see “light” around people seems to be mounting as he grows older. I am hopeful that subsequent stories will pursue his gifts in greater detail. That boy is a story all by himself.
As with any real-life situation, Micah Camp expands to include new people into the fold. With them, they bring their stories, hopes, dreams, and issues. As with all the books in the series, the family is shown to be the guiding compass in the lives of these individuals. It made sense for that theme to resonate since Micah Camp helps troubled teens. It’s all about making connections and understanding others while realizing that forgiveness is a huge part of life.
I have read the Crater Lake Series in its entirety and feel like the characters have become my friends. Francis Guenette has once again transported me to a part of the world with descriptions so rich, you feel like you can reach out and touch the flora and fauna around Crater Lake. I know the characters have touched my heart. If you love family oriented literature, you will love all of these books.
My review of the Crater Lake Series: “Disappearing in Plain Sight, Book One,” “The Light Never Lies, Book Two,” and “Chasing Down the Night, Book Three,” can be found HERE.
Character Believability: 5
Flow and Pace: 5
Reader Engagement: 5
Reader Enrichment: 5
Reader Enjoyment: 5
Overall Rate: 5 out of 5 stars
Author, Frances Guenette
Francis Guenette has spent most of her life on the west coast of British Columbia. She finds inspiration for writing in the beauty and drama of a lakeshore cabin and garden on the Northern end of Vancouver Island. She shares an off-the-grid home that employs a combination of micro-hydro and solar power with her husband, Bruce.
Between May and September, Billy Bob the Bear drops over to graze and eat huckleberries and salal. Now and then cougar tracks are spotted meandering across the property. Life is good in the hinterlands, but Francis warns – you have to keep your eyes open and know where you are.
Francis has a daughter and a son – both happily married and pursuing interesting careers. She also has two beautiful and wildly funny granddaughters who provide her with inspiration for writing and living.
For most of her working life, Francis has been an educator. She has worked with special needs children and youth and taught at the undergrad level at the University of Victoria. She has a graduate degree in counselling psychology and very nearly completed her Ph.D. There was that pesky matter of the doctoral dissertation, but enough said on that score! She has worked as a trauma counsellor, a researcher, and a graduate student supervisor.
During her academic life, Francis published (on her own and with others) several articles that were accepted to peer-reviewed journals as well as contributing to chapters in two published books.
Blog at http://disappearinginplainsight.com to learn all you would ever want to know about Francis and her writing life.
Facebook at Francis Guenette
See you again! ❤