After reading my very first novel by Lisa Wingate, I became a forever fan of her work. I love that I often have the opportunity to review her novels but it is a certainty that I would purchase each and every one of them if I happened to miss receiving one for review. “The Story Keeper” is Lisa’s latest and greatest. I’m not 100% sure about the greatest because whatever book of hers that I happen to be reading is my current favorite. They are ALL so good that it is difficult for me to choose between them.

Books with Appalachian settings have always intrigued me so “The Story Keeper” came as a pleasant surprise. I loved the union of two stories in one that features an historic journal with a pivotal role in a contemporary story. The characters in both are so well-rounded that they began to feel like friends. The trials and tribulations of Sarra and Rand offered a peek into how difficult life could be in the mountains during that time frame. The  bias against Melungeons was new to me and Sarra’s story inspired me to do a little research on them. It was quite easy to sympathize with Jen because I have a familiarity with similar family situations and know how difficult it can be to know where to draw the line when attempting to help.

I have always noticed how quotable Lisa’s novels can be and “The Story Keeper” is no exception. I wish I had taken the time to jot some of them down so I wouldn’t forget. Ahh…just another reason to go back and read it again! I really can’t say enough good things about this book. Everything about the story was spot on and I found it filled with history, romance, drama, a bit of mystery, inspiration, and faith. But most of all, Lisa has a way with words that always leaves me with something to think about after an enjoyable escape into her fictional world.

My only complaint is that Lisa just doesn’t write fast enough! Of course she is just human and I have to practice my patience. Can’t wait to see what she has for her readers next time.

This book was provided for review by Lisa Wingate’s Book Ambassadors.


The Story KeeperWhen successful New York editor Jen Gibbs discovers a decaying slush-pile manuscript on her desk, she has no idea that the story of Sarra, a young mixed-race woman trapped in Appalachia at the turn of the twentieth century, will both take her on a journey and change her forever. Happy with her life in the city, and at the top of her career with a new job at Vida House Publishing, Jen has left her Appalachian past and twisted family ties far behind. But the search for the rest of the manuscript, and Jen’s suspicions about the identity of its unnamed author, will draw her into a mystery that leads back to the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains . . . and quite possibly through the doors she thought she had closed forever.

Read a preview from The Story Keeper HERE.

Purchase a copy of The Story Keeper HERE.


Lisa WingateLisa Wingate is a magazine columnist, speaker, and the author of nineteen mainstream novels, including the national bestseller, Tending Roses, now in its eighteenth printing.  She is a seven-time ACFW Carol award nominee, a Christy Award nominee, and a two-time Carol Award winner. Her novel, Blue Moon Bay, was a Booklist Top Ten of 2012 pick.  Recently, the group Americans for More Civility, a kindness watchdog organization, selected Lisa along with Bill Ford, Camille Cosby, and six others, as recipients of the National Civies Award, which celebrates public figures who work to promote greater kindness and civility in American life.  When not dreaming up stories, Lisa spends time on the road as a motivational speaker. Via internet, she shares with readers as far away as India, where her book, Tending Roses, has been used to promote women’s literacy, and as close to home as Tulsa, Oklahoma, where the county library system has used Tending Roses to help volunteers teach adults to read.

Lisa lives on a ranch in Texas, where she spoils the livestock, raises boys, and teaches Sunday school to high school seniors. She was inspired to become a writer by a first grade teacher who said she expected to see Lisa’s name in a magazine one day.

Lisa also entertained childhood dreams of being an Olympic gymnast and winning the National Finals Rodeo, but was stalled by the inability to do a back flip on the balance beam and parents who wouldn’t finance a rodeo career. She was lucky enough to marry into a big family of cowboys and southern storytellers who would inspire any lover of tall tales and interesting, yet profound characters. She is a full time writer, and pens inspirational fiction for both the general Christian markets. Of all the things she loves about her job, she loves connecting with people, both real and imaginary, the most.  More information about Lisa’s novels can be found at