Thursday, September 10, 2009

Blog Tour and Giveaway - Stray Affections by Charlene Ann Baumbich

Stray Affections
Charlene Ann Baumbich
Multnomah/Random House
303 pgs., Reader's Guide, recipes

Cassandra Higgins loves animals. She grew up rescuing them whenever she saw they needed help. She especially loved her dog Toby. Now Cassandra lives in a small town, in a small house, with four boys, a husband, and a living room full of animal collectibles. After what happened with Toby she doesn't trust herself around real animals anymore. So, each year, she satisfies her heart's longing by attending a convention and finding a material animal for her shelf. She'll never forgive herself, or her mother Betty, for what happened twenty-four years ago.

My Thoughts
I really enjoyed this book. I felt as if I as able to get inside Cassandra's head and find out why she felt the way she did. I also understood Betty. Sometimes, as a single mom, you have to make tough choices and you can't always make the right ones. But they usually feel right when you make them.

I thought Baumbich introduced too many characters though. The addition of Cassandra's friend Margret, Marget's husband Leo, and Margret's family felt like I was trying to keep too many people straight. Also, Ken, Cassandra's husband, was a little too good to be true. When Margret told him things about Cassandra's past that he didn't know, he just accepted them and moved on. He didn't really talk to her about being open and honest with him. That said, I still liked the way he took care of her.

The plot was a little predictable, you could figure out how things were going to come around long before the story wrapped itself up. But, it moved at a nice clip and I kept turning the pages. I actually read the entire book in one sitting.

Stray Affections was an easy, relaxing read that made me pause and think. I liked how Baumbich showed her love for God without making me feel condemned or damned. The book showed a promise without making all the characters immediately repent and turn from their ways. The broken relationships didn't heal overnight but there were quite a few "feel good" moments. And I absolutely loved the twist with the snowglobe. That was unexpected and brought tears to my eyes.

About The Author

Charlene Ann Baumbich is a popular author and speaker and an award-winning journalist. In addition to her Dearest Dorothy series of novels, she has written seven nonfiction books of humor and inspiration. A bungee-jumping, once motorcycle-owning grandma and unabashed dog lover, Charlene lives with her husband and rescued dog Kornflake in Glen Ellyn , Illinois . She loves telling stories, laughing whenever possible, and considers herself a Wild Child of God. Check out Charlene's website - Don't Miss Your Life. Charlene will be at Anderson's Bookshop in Naperville, IL on Tuesday, September 29, 2009.

I'm giving away one copy of this book courtesy of Ashley and Random House. Just mention in the comments that you'd like to read this and leave your email address.
The giveaway will run until Thursday, September 17, 2009 midnight.
US and Canada entrants only, please.

Stray Affections - Charlene reading from book


  1. I absolutely LOVE to read this! Please enter my name in your draw. Thanks! wandanamgreb(at)gmail(dot)com

  2. I would love to read this book!

    Please enter me and thanks for the great giveaway!


  3. What a great opening summary paragraph and keen observation about single parenting. (Can you tell I've done that? :-) I love that you read Stray Affections in one gulp, and yet it made you stop and think.

    I'm especially glad you loved the snowglobe element, since Stray Affections is the first book in the Snowglobe Connections series.

    Thank you for your dedication to WORDS, and for putting YOUR talents to such good use. You have a wonderful blog site!

    Peace and grins,
    Charlene Ann Baumbich
    Author, Stray Affections

  4. I would love to read this - please enter me for the drawing :)

    aprildeaton at gmail dot com

  5. I LOVED reading & still have all the Dearest Dorothy Series & would love to read Stray Affections... Thanks


  6. I enjoyed your honest review of Stray Affections and would love to read it myself. Please enter me in your contest. :-)

    jackicross at gmail dot com

  7. Loved your reading of your book. Has me hooked. Please enter me. thank you.
    desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

  8. A great review...thanks for the opportunity to read this book.

    karen k

  9. I would really love to win a copy of Stray Affections.

  10. I would love to read this book. Please include me in your giveaway.

  11. I'd love to enter. Thanks!
    jpetroroy (at) gmail (dot) come

  12. The winner is April! I'm emailing you. I decided to give away both copies so the second winner is jpetroroy!


Thanks for chatting! I love comments and look forward to reading yours! I may not reply right away, but I am listening! Keep reading and don't forget to be awesome!


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