Leanna Ellis’s Facelift is a complete emotional romp. In it, Kaye Redmond’s ex-mother-in-law moves in, her daughter shaves her head, and her heart feels empty. So, what does she do? “Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the Lord your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail or forsake you.” This verse fits Facelift like a plot ready to unfurl.
Ellis uses her strong first-person voice to draw readers into the mind of Kaye Redmond and keep them entertained while they’re there. We feel everything Kaye feels. When Kaye first speaks with her mother-in-law after her disastrous facelift, we know exactly what Kaye is thinking: “Over the years, I’ve joked with friends that my mother-in-law was Frankenstein. Now, she truly is.” Hilarious thoughts like these are always running through Kaye’s mind. But Ellis also knows how to handle a serious situation. She writes about Kaye’s daughter and her little friend who has cancer in a way that is blunt and heartbreaking. The scene in the wig shop is unforgettably poignant.
Kaye’s main problem is that she is afraid of being alone. Her husband left her for “Barbie” a year and a half ago, and he took Kaye’s confidence with him. She’s doing great in some areas of life—she runs a very successful house staging company called Altered Images—but she’s still hurting in most other areas. In fact, she’s so messed up that she lets her evil ex-mother-in-law live with her for a month while the woman recovers from a botched facelift. Why? Because she wants to get her pathetic ex back. Lucky for her, she has friends who see this and try to show her that God has a better plan for her life.
Kaye is funny and loyal, and she has lots of good intentions; readers can’t help but love her. Her ex-husband is snobbish, boring, and manipulative; readers can’t help but distrust him. Her client Jack, however, is a strong Christian man who helps Kaye see how special she is. He shows her what it means to love someone genuinely. Kaye’s relationship with her ex-mother-in-law is equally important because through it Kaye realizes that she doesn’t want to be loved for her outward appearance but rather for who she is on the inside (Proverbs 31:30).
Leanna Ellis may be new in the world of authors, but she knows how to write an entertaining, strong novel. I recommend her to all lovers of romantic Christian fiction. If you want a book with an original storyline, something fresh and funny, then Facelift is the book for you. Just don’t read it in the library, because libraries frown on noisy laughter. – Rachel Tobin, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
Kaye Redmond, a "can do" kind of woman, has the magical touch when it comes to staging houses to attract buyers. Her ability to make things "perfect" has served her well in her career. If only it could transform her personal life as well. With a failed marriage, an angry teenage daughter, and an ex-mother-in-law who is no fairy godmother, Kaye's life is about as imperfect as it gets.
But sometimes blessings come in the strangest packages. Like her ex-mother-in-law landing on Kaye's doorstep after a botched facelift. Could caring for the impossible woman help Kaye get what she wants most: her husband back? Isn't that what God would want? And what her daughter needs? But no fairy princess ever faced such obstacles: an ex-husband's surgically enhanced mistress, hormonal teenagers, and--worst of all--an extra handsome prince! How's a woman supposed to find happily-ever-after with all that going on?