Promises to Keep, by Ann Tatlock, is an engaging contemporary Christian fiction work, including mystery, character development, and drama in a tale of family growth, as told by Roz (Rosalind), the 12-year-old daughter. Fleeing an abusive husband, her mother begins piecing together their lives in a new city, requiring much adjustment for Roz and her siblings.
I found the suspenseful story-line to be intriguing, as extensive character development ensued, and each person was painted boldly – as though I had met them before. The friendship between Roz and Mara (a school-friend), brought to light the growth into adulthood that these tough choices had caused for Roz. The mother remained a shadowy figure (characteristically working, as a single-mom), while their ‘adoptive’ grandmother figure, Tillie, becomes larger than life, and the one character consistently displaying Christian beliefs. However, Tillie’s beliefs do not give greater clarity to the problems facing Roz, but are rather the louder voice heard in the household. I felt as though I had watched this book unfold, but was given no tools if it were to unfold in my own life.