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I'm a writer and library worker who wears many hats. I believe a good book and a good piece of chocolate are the keys to a happy life.

Monday, June 30, 2008

The First Year by Crystal Liechty

Ok, first I have to say that I love the cover of The First Year by Crystal Liechty. If for no other reason, I would have bought this book just to have a copy of that picture. It’s just very cute. Oh, and the story isn’t half bad either.

How many of us can relate to those little nagging feelings that crop up every once in a while saying, “Oh man! Why did I ever marry this guy?” Fortunately for most of us, these moments are gradually replaced with more moments when we say, “Wow, what an awesome guy I married!” That’s what marriage is all about—learning about each other and how to work together to make you spouse and family the best they can be. Love is a gradual process over years of wanting that love to grow. That’s the message of The First Year.

Marriage is the jumping off point that throws you firmly into another world you may or may not have felt prepared for. Without any outside factors it can be very hard to get through. Add in the world and things can go from very hard to seemingly impossible. What would happen if at those moments when you’re questioning your sanity for even getting married, the man you thought you were supposed to marry showed back up in your life? What if he was also trying his best to convince you that you were married to the wrong man? What if it started to seem like he was right, like your husband really didn’t love you? What if it seems all of your friends are facing significant difficulties in their marriages as well?

Yeah, you’ve just stirred in a healthy helping of angst into the marriage mix. Fortunately, thanks to Crystal’s fun-loving style, you get a full dose of humor stirred in as well. Though there were a few times when I felt like I’d stumbled over a plot shift, overall I found myself anxious to turn the page. I was involved in these character’s lives. I wanted to see them succeed and find that happier place that can and does exist in married life.

I learned some valuable lessons while still having a lot of fun. For instance, things are not always as they seem. Yes, that first year is very difficult. You need to learn to trust your feelings. It’s also about realizing that you can’t fully understand or see into another person’s heart or life. The best things you can do for yourself, your friends, and your spouse is to turn to God first. If you trust the tiny nudgings from the Spirit that brought you to that point in your life, you’ll be able to find the path that will lead you out safely on the other side. The First Year is about trials, commitment, and dedication. It’s about dragging yourself, sometimes kicking and screaming, through that adjustment period and coming out the other side with a stronger commitment to marriage and your spouse. The First Year is about the best thing in the world: learning how love really can conquer all.

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1 comment:

Shirley Bahlmann said...

This sounds like a great book! Thanks for a thorough and entertaining review!