Rebekah Reads: Elnora Monet Book Review, May 10, 2021
Listen along with my Independence Island Playlist
About the Book
Book: The Elnora Monet
Author: Rachel Skatvold
Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance
Release date: April 27, 2021
Islanders call him the Elnora Monet.
Is that island speak for “pompous, arrogant jerk?”
When Carly Mulligan volunteered to make house calls on Elnora, she never imagined treating the richest cat on the islands. What other feline has his own wing in a mansion like the Belshaw Estate?
After a wrong turn in the mansion, Carly stumbles across a secret room—one filled with incredible paintings. Perhaps there’s something more to the man than she first thought.
Most people envy Jean-Luc Belshaw’s position. The heir to a lucrative business and family fortune, he should have everything he could dream of.
But Luc dreams of days past. Days when he traveled the world with his wife and painted the breathings of his soul disappeared with Angeline’s passing. Faith and inspiration gone, he wonders if returning to France to take his place in his father’s business is the right thing to do.
Carly has a few relational demons of her own, and she’s reluctant to trust him, but Luc’s paintings draw her in even as his story touches a long-empty place in her heart.
Only God can transform two broken pasts into a work of art.
The Elnora Monet continues the Elnora Island romances of the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.
The reader gets the impression he wants to be left alone, but he is impressed with the cool, calm, and slightly irate veterinary assistant’s knowledge of Monet, despite the fact she did not exhibit the slightest bit of “impressive insight” concerning Monet’s Red Poppies at Argenteuil’. She didn’t exhibit any insight concerning Monet’s Red Poppies at Argenteuil’. All she said was it is one of her favorites and she heard Monet’s wife and son were models for the painting. This is not insight, it’s a fact any of my 10th grade students could spout. When observing Monet’s Red Poppies at Argenteuil’ the eye is drawn to the woman in the foreground who stands out, rather than the woman and child who blend into the row of trees. The color palettes of the woman in the background and the woman in the foreground are in contrast with one another. The woman in the foreground with parasol lowered gives the viewer the immediate impression of sunlight on color and shape as mothers and children walk in the fields surrounding their home on a summer day.
Jean-Luc being impressed by a piece of trivia indicates the character lacks depth, hardly the piece of ephemera one would expect to impress the Elnora Monet. I hoped, as I read, he would develop in the story. Spoiler Alert: He develops as a character. At the beginning, he seems like a puppy and as Augusta Elton in Emma is want to say, “I am a scourge of puppies.” Luckily for Jean-Luc, he is the character with the greatest change in this book.
Overall, it is a very light, quick read. The love story is clean and sweet enough to cause a toothache. Faith and Scripture play very lightly into the storyline and the setting and character are a bit under-developed. If you’re following the series, you won’t want to miss the follow up to Her Merrweather Hero, the stronger of the two titles.
Disclaimer: I asked for a review copy of this book. This is my honest, personal opinion.
About the AuthorRachel Skatvold is a Christian author and stay-at-home mom from the Midwest. She enjoys writing inspirational romance and encouraging blogs. Rachel completed her first series, the Riley Family Legacy Novellas in 2014 and is now working on the Hart Ranch Series, set in the Montana wilderness and the Ladies of Ardena Series, set in medieval times. She is also a contributing author in the Whispers in Wyoming and Brides of Pelican Rapids Series. Other than writing, some of her hobbies include singing, reading and camping in the great outdoors with her husband and two young sons. You can find more information about Rachel and her books on her website: www.rachelskatvold.com.
More from Rachel
Thank you for helping celebrate the release of The Elnora Monet by following this Celebration Tour hosted by Celebrate Lit. I hope you enjoy learning a little more about the characters and what inspired the story. Please follow the other stops on this tour and don’t forget to enter in the giveaway. Thank you!
It has been a wonderful experience working with the talented authors and editors in the Independence Islands Series. Each of these stories has a heartwarming message of faith and the characters always teach me something new. Ever since writing Kendall Mulligan’s story in Her Merriweather Hero, I’ve been excited to share her free-spirited younger sister’s story.
Carly had many struggles in the first book, questioning what purpose God had for her life. This time around, her feet are more grounded, but she still has some growing to do when it comes to faith. Carly has been a fun character to write about because of her witty extroverted personality and some of the humorous predicaments she ends up in…one of them including getting caught snooping around a billionaire’s mansion.
While not outspoken as Carly, I can relate to the character’s search for direction. Sometimes it is difficult learning to trust, especially during troubling times, but we can rely on God’s promises. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; don’t rely on your own intelligence. Know him in all your paths, and he will keep your ways straight.” This verse means so much to me because I know even when I can’t understand something, He is behind the scenes guiding me in the right direction. For Carly, it leads in a direction she never expects, but it is worth it in the end.
Certain parts of the story were inspired by my mom. If you have read Her Merriweather Hero, you know the Mulligan sisters are originally from New England, close to where my mom grew up. I love hearing about her memories of spending time at Nantasket Beach, drinking orange pop, and putting chips in her sandwich so they wouldn’t blow away. Even though I grew up in the Midwest, I still put chips in my own sandwich because of watching her do the same thing and her fridge is always stocked with orange pop to this day. Little bits of my mom’s childhood are weaved into this story, making it close to my heart.
I hope you have enjoyed learning a little more about characters and story behind The Elnora Monet. Now continue reading for a summary of the book and giveaway. Blessings!
Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, May 10
Lakesidelivingsite, May 10
Rebekah Reads Lit, May 10
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, May 11
The Meanderings of a Bookworm, May 11
She Lives to Read, May 12
Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, May 12
deb’s Book Review, May 13
Texas Book-aholic, May 14
Mypreciousbitsandmusings, May 14
Inklings and notions, May 15
CarpeDiem, May 15
For Him and My Family, May 16
Cultivating Us, May 16
Locks, Hooks and Books, May 17
Books and Everyday Live, May 17
Blossoms and Blessings, May 17
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, May 18
Lots of Helpers, May 19
A Modern Day Fairy Tale, May 19
Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, May 20
Blogging With Carol , May 20
Godly Book Reviews, May 21
Kayem Reads, May 21
Connect in Fiction, May 22
Splashes of Joy, May 23
Simple Harvest Reads, May 23 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)
To celebrate her tour, Rachel is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.