Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The House on Malcolm Street -- and Leisha Kelly

Author: Leisha Kelly
Publisher: Revell
September 2010
ISBN: 978-0-8007-3328-5
Genre: Inspirational/historical/women’s fiction

Leah Breckenridge has faced the ultimate in loss. In less than two years she lost her mother, her husband, her newborn son, her home, and most of their belongings. All she has left is her six-year-old daughter, Elisa Rose. Angry at God, Leah and Ellie have no place to go but to her husband’s elderly aunt, Marigold, who owns a boarding house.

Arriving unexpected, late at night, no one is at the station to meet them. Encumbered with two heavy bags and a drowsy daughter, Leah is still more than reluctant to accept a stranger’s help. He’s insistent though, especially so when he discovers they’re going to the same place.

Aunt Marigold offers Leah and Ellie the best room in the house, and Leah offers to help in exchange for free rent. The only downside is Josiah—Aunt Marigold’s nephew, the man who helped Leah. Is there any hope that Leah’s heart will heal and she’ll discover that God loved them and helped them all along?

THE HOUSE ON MALCOLM STREET is the latest release by acclaimed author Leisha Kelly. She is talented and able to bring the characters to life, causing us to feel some sympathy for Leah and the terrible situation she and Ellie found themselves in. I hoped Leah would be able to mend the relationship with her estranged father, and find a new hope for the future.

This is women’s fiction, not a romance, which disappointment me, but it is still good, though sad, and there is a hope-for-a-romance in the book. I was disappointed in the overall plot and the death factor, but it's a story of healing from loss, not romance. $14.99. 346 pages.

Author Leisha Kelly Passes Away

Grand Rapids, MI – Leisha Kelly, 47, was killed in car accident Tuesday night (January 25th) near Fowler, Illinois . Her son, 16-year-old Justice, was also killed in the crash. Kelly, a resident of nearby Clayton , Illinois , was the author of 11 books, among them a best-selling inspirational historical fiction series centered around the Wortham and Hammond families, set in Southern Illinois . Her most recent book, The House on Malcolm Street, was published by Revell in September 2010.

Kelly leaves behind her husband K.J. and a daughter, Hosanna. Kelly home-schooled her two children and served as a children’s ministry director and a youth minister at her family’s church. The couple had also recently become foster parents.

Vicki Crumpton, Executive Editor for Revell, who worked with Kelly since her first book, Julia’s Hope, was published in 2001 said, “I remember receiving Leisha’s first proposal in 2001. I read what her agent sent and called him that day to ask to read more of the manuscript. When I presented the proposal to our publishing committee, the team read the proposal and a few sample chapters. The first thing people asked was, “When can we read the rest?” And every time we received a new proposal from Leisha, people always asked, “When can I read more?” Leisha’s fans felt the same way. They always wanted to know when her next book would be out.”

“Leisha Kelly was an amazing talent. More than that, she was an amazing person, loved by family, friends, and her fans. Her unique writing voice will be greatly missed,” Crumpton said.

Twila Bennett, Senior Director of Marketing for Revell, remembers a story Kelly told her once. “She had a vivid memory of one of her first writing experiences that has stayed with me after all this time. She was young, it was the year that Mount Saint Helens erupted and she had heard the news stories about how the ashes might fall on other states. She felt a story burning in her and went out to her front porch and wrote and wrote. And then, the ashes from Mount Saint Helens really did indeed begin falling on her paper like snow.”

“I keep seeing that young Leisha now and look in wonderment at this girl, who overcame so much and gained the world on Tuesday with her son at her side,” Bennett said.

For more information on Leisha and her books, please visit

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