Monday, March 17, 2014

Review: Providence by Lisa Colozza Cocca

Providence
Providence by Lisa Colozza Cocca
The eldest of ten children on a dirt-poor farm, Becky trudges through life as a full-time babysitter, trying to avoid her father's periodic violent rages. When the family's barn burns down, her father lays the blame on Becky, and her own mother tells her to run for it. Run she does, hopping into an empty freight car. There, in a duffel bag, Becky finds an abandoned baby girl, only hours old. After years of tending to her siblings, sixteen-year-old Becky knows just what a baby needs. This baby needs a mother. With no mother around, Becky decides, at least temporarily, this baby needs her. When Becky hops off the train in a small Georgia town, it's with baby "Georgia" in her arms. When she meets Rosie, an eccentric thrift-shop owner, who comes to value and love Becky as no one ever has, Becky rashly claims the baby as her own. Not everyone in town is as welcoming as Rosie, though. Many suspect Becky and her baby are not what they seem. Among the doubters is a beautiful, reclusive woman with her own terrible loss and a long history with Rosie. As Becky's life becomes entangled with the lives of the people in town, including a handsome boy who suspects Becky is hiding something from her past, she finds her secrets more difficult to keep. Becky should grab the baby and run, but her newfound home and job with Rosie have given Becky the family she's never known. Despite her guilt over leaving her mother alone, she is happy for the first time. But it's a happiness not meant to last. When the truth comes out, Becky has the biggest decision of her life to make. Should she run away again? Should she stay--and fight? Or lie? What does the future hold for Becky and Georgia? With a greatness of heart and a stubborn insistence on hope found in few novels of any genre, "Providence" proves that home is where you find it, love is an active verb, and family is more than just a word.


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Publishes in US: March 18th 2014 by Merit Press
Genre: YA contemp
Source: netgalley
Series? No

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    I wanted to read Providence because I like the premise of her finding the baby, needing to escape home, and finding acceptance and love in the small town where she gets off the train. I have read another book similar to it, except the girl took her little sister because her mom was on drugs I think. 
    I liked the story well enough, it for me just pushes the boundary of realism. I am sure that something like this could happen, but I guess I have a hard time believing that she could make it with a little girl on her own knowing no one, and that her parents wouldn't come looking for her. I understand that they were a farm family and her dad had a temper, but with the mom and 9 other siblings, and her leaving without notice and not being of age, it just breaks my heart that they wouldn't look for her or care that she is gone.  
    The small town feeling was amazing in this one. She happens upon the nicest lady, Rosie who gives her a job and eventually takes her and baby girl Georgia into her home. But some of the other town members, reasonably, ask questions, and it makes Becky uncomfortable to lie, but some she can't escape. The way they described the main street and everyone up in other's business really gave it an authentic ring to it and almost made me think this was a historical fiction, but there is still mentions of texting and other such modern conveniences, so that threw that idea. 
    The bond between Rosie and Becky I think is what made me keep reading this book. Oh and the mentions of John and hints at romance that unfortunately didn't come to fruititon like I would have hoped. But that is another thing, that romance and any thoughts of that were squashed by Becky and she was being responsible in the ways that counted for baby Georgia even if there were many things she was doing wrong. Rosie is so sweet and unasuming but she also pushes Becky to be the best she can be. 
    I didn't feel like Becky had enough personality though, she was kind of just there and leading the story, I didn't get a whole lot of feeling for who she was besides the generic daughter, sister, and caregiver of Georgia. I did like that she was selfless towards Georgia and Rosie, putting their needs first and that she was a hard worker. The most I got from her really was that she liked to read, and when she was decorating the store or making things I almost got that breakthrough of what she loved and who she could become. Though I suppose to be fair, by the ending where she had Rosie vested in her as well as another townsperson the mysterious Lily on her side, she began to think some of the what-ifs, and how could it work. 
    The ending worked for this one, but I guess I just wanted more information about Becky's choices and how it works out. And more of John... 

Bottom Line: Good contemporary with secondary characters I loved. Becky and romance just fell a little short.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
What would you do if you found an abandoned baby while sneaking on board a train?
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24 comments:

  1. I have no idea. I certainly couldn't just leave it there, but I have a feeling that if I made Becky's choice, things wouldn't have turned out nearly so well (even though it does sound like the author was trying to be somewhat realistic by keeping everything from working itself out to the tune of a HEA). There are obvious differences, but this kind of reminds me of Where the Heart Is. Only less optimistic and quirky. I don't think this book is for me, but w/o your review I wouldn't know that, so thanks ;)

    Jessica @ Rabid Reads

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    1. It was more realistic than the other I read, but I don't think that the legal issues were

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  2. This reminds me of the back story for Gilmore Girls, and I love that show. Although, I do have a hard time when the boundaries of realism are pushed so I dunno... Great review!

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    1. Oh really? I used to watch with my grandma, but didn't know about the backstory

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  3. It's too bad Becky's personality fell kind of flat for you and that you never got the romance you were hoping for but this sounds like it was good overall. I love small town stories and I think I would enjoy this one a lot!

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    1. I def loved Rosie though and how the town reacted to Georgia

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  4. It's a shame the romance fell short, and that you had trouble with Becky's personality. I think this probably isn't for me, but I appreciate your lovely honest review!

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  5. OHhhh this sounds so good!!!!!! Even if the romance falls short I definitely think the rest sounds interesting enough

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    1. It def was interesting and kept my attention

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  6. It's nice that you enjoyed the secondary character, but sorry about the romance. This probably isn't my type of book though. Great review!

    Janina @ Synchronized Reading

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    1. It was like the secondary were better written

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  7. I do like the sound of this as well. I'm wondering if the failure in the romance department has something to do with it not really as vital as the story of Becky and the baby? Hmmmm..

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    1. That is true but John was there and it seems like she was setting it up and foreshadowing

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  8. It's too bad Becky's personality was kinda flat and the romance wasn't there. I do like the sound of Rosie though. What an interesting concept for a story.

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  9. Based on the synopsis alone, this seems like a fabulous story. Too bad you couldn't get a feel of the MC. She should have been far more complex.
    Great review!

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  10. Why do you torture yourself with these types of stories?!?! ;;((

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  11. I'm sorry it didn't really work out with Becky and I understand the problem with you believing what was happening.

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  12. This book is new to me but when books that deal with something very real in our world I need them to be realistic. Sadly this one doesn't sound like it. Great review, Brandi :)

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    1. But is a girl finding an abandoned baby and raising it as her own happening very much in real world? That is what I asked myself

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  13. Not sure if this one is for me, but I'd never heard of it, so thanks for filling me in :)
    Jen @ YA Romantics

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  14. Well, honestly, I can't figure myself ever jumping on a train. But, if I did find a baby, I would take it to the hospital. I don't know if I would feel attached to it or not. If so, I would definitely follow up and possibly adopt him/her. I think it would be easy to get attached.

    Thanks for the review!

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    1. It would be sooo easy to get attached, my first thought would be the hospital as well. But I guess she was running away from home..

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  15. It's too bad this one fell short for you, Brandi. I, too, like the premise. Nice review. :)

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