Comfort & Joy, by Kristin Hannah

Cover ImageFinished audio 6-2-09, rating 3/5, romance, pub. 2005

Joy is facing her first Christmas since she came home one day to find her sister in bed with her husband.  As she is trying to come to terms with the holiday her sister, Stacey, shows up at her house, pregnant and offering a wedding invitation.  Instead of facing the betrayal of the two people she has loved most marrying each other she heads to the airport, ready to hop on a plane to anywhere.  She chooses a charter flight to Canada and the plane adds to her run of bad luck by crashing. 

Joy walks away from the crash and takes refuge in an old fishing resort in the rain forest of the Pacific Northwest.  There she is befriended by a boy who has just lost his mother and develops a crush on the boy’s father.  Joy faces the truth of life back home and coming to terms with her sister.

I found this novel a bit tedious for the first few discs, but it was easy to follow (you could almost say too easy) and so it worked out okay for car listening.  Then about halfway through there was an interesting twist that awakened my curiosity and imagination.  Unbelievable, yes, but romantically appealing. 

My biggest problem with the book was Joy’s relationship with her sister.  It was completely unbelievable.  I don’t have a sister, but if this sister says she loves you and is your closest friend and then not only sleeps with your husband, but continues the relationship, even starting a new family with him, well, I’d have to say your sister may not love you all that much.  But somehow Joy attempts to forge ahead with a relationship and it seems so silly.  It seemed like the moral of the story and yet it was completely unbelievable.

It was very uneven storytelling.  I didn’t mind listening to it in the car, wouldn’t really recommend it.