A Broken Kind of Beautiful, by Katie Ganshert

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Katie Ganshert’s third novel, A Broken Kind of Beautiful, is like an elegant painting adorning a far wall at a bustling art museum. From a distance, the bold artwork catches the eye, pulls one forward, thrills with vivid colors and swirling shapes. But close-up, the detailed painting explodes with infinite depth and unexpected layers, beautiful in its detail and the perfect collaboration of colors.

Despite a birthday party weekend, lots of noise, and cake pop distractions, I couldn’t put A Broken Kind of Beautiful down. Ivy and Davis’s story gripped me, held me close, pained me at times, but ultimately brought comfort and grace when I finally closed the book. It was emotional and deep, as redemption, mercy, and forgiveness swirled in bright colors that wrapped the reader into a soft and strong story not soon forgotten.

From the back of the book:

Sometimes everything you ever learned about yourself is wrong
 
Fashion is a fickle industry, a frightening fact for twenty-four year old model Ivy Clark. Ten years in and she’s learned a sacred truth—appearance is everything. Nobody cares about her broken past as long as she looks beautiful for the camera. This is the only life Ivy knows—so when it starts to unravel, she’ll do anything to hold on. Even if that means moving to the quaint island town of Greenbrier, South Carolina, to be the new face of her stepmother’s bridal wear line—an irony too rich for words, since Ivy is far from the pure bride in white. 
 
If only her tenuous future didn’t rest in the hands of Davis Knight, her mysterious new photographer. Not only did he walk away from the kind of success Ivy longs for to work maintenance at a local church, he treats her differently than any man ever has. Somehow, Davis sees through the façade she works so hard to maintain. He, along with a cast of other characters, challenges everything Ivy has come to believe about beauty and worth. Is it possible that God sees her—a woman stained and broken by the world—yet wants her still?

Katie’s a master with words and images and emotions. A Broken Kind of Beautiful scales the shallow heights of world-worshipped beauty and the loyal depths of a brother’s love, tracing the yearning heart of a barren woman’s love, and the empty ache from a distant father’s failure. Davis and Ivy’s budding chemistry was realistic and taut, building to a sweet and satisfying final scene that I reread a few times. Each chapter knits together colorful threads into a beautiful love story that I highly recommend, one that thrills with redemption’s song amidst raw real life’s pain.

Katie’s two previous books, Wildflowers From Winter and Wishing on Willows, are both strong, emotional, wonderful reads. I recommend all three, but I truly loved Ivy, Davis, and Marilyn’s story in A Broken Kind of Beautiful. It’s a must-read.

*I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for my honest review.*

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