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Guide to Antebellum Flat Rock

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Flat Rock history via a road

Travelling back in time on a Flat Rock roadby Rob Neufeld             If you walk the one mile length of North Highland Lake Road in Flat Rock, you step nearly 200 years into the past.            At the east end, the 21st century reigns.  Fronting six-lane Spartanburg Highway, a super-Ingles sits above a bog; and a CVS store faces an Octopus Garden smoke shop, a chiropractor, a cell phone provider, and a six-lane avenue to I-26 a mile away .            Neither Ingles nor CVS carries the big…See More
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Three Gifts

Mary Flinn

Aviva Publishers (2011)

ISBN 9781935586487

Reviewed by Olivera Baumgartner-Jackson for Reader Views (11/11)

There are days when I simply want a heartwarming story, preferably one which is believable enough and which deals with real life issues of the kind that I can relate to. When I saw "Three Gifts" by Mary Flinn, I was hoping it would turn out to be one of those, since I have previously read and liked "Second Time’s a Charm," another one of Ms. Flinn’s contemporary romances. I was definitely not disappointed.

"Three Gifts" is a story about Chelsea and Kyle, young newlyweds dealing with the realities of married life. Unlike a lot of other stories I’ve read, married life in "Three Gifts" is not depicted as some kind of a prison sentence. Quite to the contrary, in spite of the two young people having to deal with all kinds of issues, their love and tenderness towards each other remains constant and even grows. The first year of their marriage is quite eventful and they encounter many troubles, yet they do not allow any of them to interfere with their happiness, regardless of whether they stem from their past or the present.

There were a lot of things about this book that I greatly enjoyed, from the well drawn, detailed and truly believable characters, interesting storyline with proper pacing and engaging issues encountered by the main characters as well as some of the minor ones, to the unique way of telling the story from two distinctly different viewpoints, namely Chelsea’s and Kyle’s. Those two were so likeable that I wished they were real and living nearby. It would be quite refreshing to see two people so devoted to each other, and so very willing to work on any troubles that they've encountered and to overcome them. Past, present or future, it simply did not matter to them - they were ready to actually do something to make things right. One thing is for sure, I now have a new favorite phrase to use in my own life, "Today...it’s me." If you want to know its meaning, you will simply have to read Mary Flinn’s "Three Gifts." I can assure you that will not be a chore at all.

I would highly recommend this book to those readers who enjoy well written, intelligent contemporary romances, particularly those who are considering marriage or those who have been married for a while. There are important lessons to be learned within the pages of "Three Gifts," and they are delivered in an upbeat, approachable and smart manner, which never veers towards preachy.

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