Monday, October 11, 2010

Book Review: The House on Malcolm Street by Leisha Kelly

About the book:

It is the autumn of 1920 and Leah Breckenridge is desperate to find a way to provide for her young daughter. After losing her husband and infant son in an accident, she is angry at God and fearful about the future. Finding refuge in a boardinghouse run by her late husband's aunt, Leah's heart begins the slow process of mending. Is it the people who surround her--or perhaps this very house--that reach into her heart with healing? Delightful, realistic characters and skilled writing make The House on Malcolm Street a treasure. Leisha Kelly's fans and new readers alike will find this simple story about the complexities of life an engrossing read. 

My thoughts (thus far):

This has been a really tough book to read so far, and it's not one I would recommend to someone looking for a happy read.  It is a story of deep grief for both Leah and Josiah because they have both lost a spouse and a child.  Leah tries her hardest to deal with her grief while raising her only daughter, Eliza, while Josiah represses his grief and avoids getting close to Leah and Eliza.  But in spite of the difficult circumstances that Leah and Josiah have experienced, I see that this is a story of hope....hope that God does not leave his children forsaken, and hope that in spite of a storm, God is always waiting with open arms of love.  I can't wait to reach the conclusion!

Remaining thoughts (from about 3 weeks later):

Well, it took me a long time to finish this one.  It seemed like I read and read and read, and nothing really progressed for the longest time in this story.  In spite of it being a very slow read, I was very impressed by Leah's fear of trains that literally jumped off the pages.  The way her nightmares were written felt extremely believable, as well as the panic attacks that followed.  Toward the end, I found myself more interested in the story happening between Leah's Aunt Marigold and her neighbor, Mr. Abraham, rather than the conclusion of Leah and Josiah's stories. My final rating for The House on Malcolm Street was 3 stars.

**Many thanks to Donna Hausler at Revell for providing a copy for review.


  1. Nice review!

    I thought that The House on Malcolm Street was an interesting, but heavy read. I have read several books by Leisha Kelly and enjoyed Julia’s Hope, Emma’s Gift and Katie’s Dream.

    The House on Malcolm Street was not a light hearted story. The issues it deals with are heavy and make for a daunting read sometimes. Does it have a lot of meaning packed into one novel? Yes, it is likely one you won’t forget about, but it’s kind of a rainy day book, if you know what I mean.

    I have also written a more in-depth review on my own site:


  2. Thanks, Tracy! Actually, I'm still in the middle of this one because it's been a hard book for me to read. I'm a little over halfway through, and I think the best is yet to come. :o)


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