Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Breaking Free by Lauraine Snelling

Breaking Free is the July pick of the FLICKS Book and Movie Club, and we sat outside by a fire and discussed the book . . . some of the time. As anyone who has been a part of a book club knows, often the discussion is about life in general rather than the book. We did all agree that we enjoyed this Christian romance. The storyline was unique and it was a powerful story of redemption.

Maggie Roberts has been in prison for seven long years and has gotten by keeping a low profile. Suddenly toward the end of her term, see if noticed by fellow inmate DC and starts to fear for her life. Luckily at that time she gets a chance to work in a retired Thoroughbred racehorse program. Working there pairs her with one special horse, Breaking Free, and gives her a chance to shorten her sentence.

Eddie Winters is a young boy with spina bifida. Although he is confined to a wheelchair, he is a free-spirited boy that loves to ride horses. His wealthy Dad Gil is raising him alone with the help of their housekeeper, Maria, after Eddie’s mother was unable to handle his handi-cap.
The Winters family and Maggie are soon thrown together when Gil purchases a rehabilitated Breaking Free for his son. A newly released Maggie comes along to help finish the horses’ training. The Winters family and Maggie learn the powerful lesson of redemption and about not judging other people.

I liked this book, but didn’t love it. I really liked that it was a unique story to me with the life of a prisoner and all of the horse details. It was a very uplifting story and a great story of redemption. I liked the characters, but I didn’t feel like many of them were fully developed. There were a couple of great characters in the prison (like Kool Kat) who were just left behind when Maggie left the prison and never discussed again. I missed Kool Kat! Also the main romance was not developed enough at all. All of the sudden an engagement happens at the end and I thought, wait a minute; they haven’t even gone on a date! Also, this is a strange complaint, but Gil’s wealth got a bit annoying. Anytime Eddie wanted anything, he had his Dad wrapped around his little finger – be it to buy him a house, a horse, etc. It was almost sickening, and definitely hard to relate too.

My book club enjoyed this novel too, but most seemed to agree there should have been a Breaking Free 2 where the romance was more developed and Kook Kat returned!

Book Source: The Kewaunee Library

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