Friday, February 11, 2011

Book Review: Bumpy Landings by Donald J. Carey

Title: Bumpy Landings
Author: Donald J. Carey
Genre: LDS Romance
Release Date: January 2011
Pages: 251

From the Back Cover

Across the field, a couple of small planes cast long shadows as the sun inched its way toward the western horizon.
Then Jordan heard the sound he was hoping for. He looked out into the sky above the ocean where a small white plane with a red tail buzzed over the waves, flying parallel to the runway. As the plane flew past, Jordan imagined he was the one at the controls, with one eye on the airport and the other on the altimeter, waiting for just the right moment to turn into the base leg of the landing pattern.
All his life, Jordan MacDonald has dreamed of taking flight and soaring above the majestic mountains of his native Hawaii, but he doesn’t dare disobey his mother, who has absolutely forbidden him from flying. Suddenly everything changes when, spurred by the pain of a failed relationship, Jordan begins working toward the coveted pilot’s license. Just as he finds love again, Jordan’s lies start to close in around him, and he soon learns that a life full of dishonesty attracts more turbulence than he’s ever faced in the air.
My Review
I opened the pages not knowing what to expect. I soon found myself immersed in Hawaiian scenery, and felt as if I were there, driving on roads with the tropical breezes bringing all kinds of warm scents to my nose. I could almost see the sun sparkling off the ocean. 
Jordan MacDonald was a bit of a non-risk taker at first. His dating prowess needed major work. Being a woman, there were times I wanted to yell at him to slow down while dating a girl! I wanted to spare him the embarrassment that comes from pursuing a lady a little bit too quickly. Reading his trials brought back memories of my dating days, specifically ones that I'm thankful are over. I wanted to pull Jordan aside and give him some sisterly advice! 
It was great seeing how Jordan grew throughout the story. I rooted for him to stand up for what he wanted for himself, both with his mother and in his love life. I found myself really caring about what happened to him, and his mother was someone I wanted to kick in the teeth! I stayed up way too late at night (actually, in the morning) to find out what would happen. I knew what I hoped would happen, but Carey was really good at making me wonder if things would go as I wished! There were some twists and surprises as well. It was so fun reading a romantic story written from a man's point of view.
I enjoyed the book so much that I would have liked to know some of the characters a little bit more. For example, I would have liked to know more about Jordan, the kinds of movies, food (besides a couple of delicious-sounding recipes I'm thrilled are on the author's website!), music, and other types of things he enjoyed. I would have also liked to see Jordan and the women he dates finding out those things about each other; it would have added a bit more solidification to their relationships for me--though there was enough that I was heavily invested in the story. 
There was also a subplot that, after finishing the book, made me wonder why the characters would have kept reminders of each other in a prominent place, but that was only a minor thing.
The flying parts were wonderful, and I loved the attention to detail. I could picture all the characters really well. Carey did a wonderful job defining each person. This is a book with a lot of heart.
So, if you want to know how guys think while they're dating, get whisked away to a fabulous, warm, tropical beach in the Hawaiian Islands and laugh and cry (darn you Don, you did make me teary-eyed!), pour a glass of pineapple juice and curl up with the great read that is Bumpy Landings. I highly recommend it.
Comment on this post for a chance to win a prize on this blog tour! 
Buy your own copy of Bumpy Landings at Amazon in paper or Kindle editions.
You can visit Don Carey at his website, (While you're there, look for the recipes from the book! I can't wait to try both of them!)

*Disclaimer: I was given a copy of the book for the purpose of review, and this does not influence my opinions. I have received no other compensation for this review.


Don said...

Thank you again for your review, and for taking part in the blog tour. I hope to see you and James again at Storymakers.

Anonymous said...

This is a very good review, well-written! And it sounds like a good read.

I came over here from Tamara Heiner's Linky for National Make a Friend day. I'm LDS too, so I also enjoy meeting other church members on Blogger. I'm much older than you are (I have grandchildren your children's ages!), and just now getting my first full length novel published. And I see what YOU'VE already written! Cheers.
Ann Best, Author

Kimberly said...

It's a bit eerie reading your review because I finished the book last night (okay, 1am this morning) and your opinions echo mine (or mine echo yours) to an almost disturbing degree! Definitely a good read!

Anonymous said...

Really does sound like a great book, I'm hearing impressive stuff about the setting, especially. I spent an impressive eight days in Hawaii when I was ten years old... would love to go back, even if it was through a book!

L.T. Elliot said...

Excellent review, Rebecca! I don't have my own copy yet but I will! I will!

Karen said...

Sounds like a book I should read right now, in the last days of Winter, just to warm up!

A very great review, Becca!

Melissa J. Cunningham said...

I'm reviewing this book too! My turn doesn't come until the 24th but I wrote it today.