I have something special for you as the last post of my writing/book week of posts here on the blog. The sweet and talented Ivy Rose has agreed to do a post swap with me! We read each other’s books and are featuring them on our blogs today! You can read her post on London in the Dark, here. Ivy is such a special person and I it has been such a delight getting to know her and reading her book! She is also the wonderful hostess of The Very Awesome Vlog Challenge that I try to participate in when I can. So, without further more ado, let’s get into it!
~ Left to Die ~
~ My review ~
I had been wanting to read Ivy’s book for quite a while. My sisters had both read it before me an I had been eyeing it with longing every time I turned on my kindle. I finally got the chance in the last month and I am so thankful I read this little volume. It is probably the best novella I have read to date. It is not easy to create a story in such a short word count and make it satisfying to the readers. Ivy nailed it.
The characters were so sweet, but human and I related a lot with each of them for different reasons. This book was so impactful and I find it even more so because Miss Rose writes from experience. And that shines through.
Um, lots of stuff.
~ Lindy of course. Her struggles were real to me and something I have struggled with in a minor way, so I totally related to that.
~I loved how easily the setting was captured. With so few words I felt myself in China, and I have no basis of knowledge for that. I could picture where everyone was and what was going on.
~The medical stuff. I am a huge medical buff. I have studied a lot in the field and found nearly all of Ivy’s facts to be correct to my knowledge. I just love medical detail y’all, call me weird.
~ The romance. It was so understated, but there and real and normal, and natural feeling! I have read a post by Ivy on how to write romance, and I must say, I very much appreciate her approach. So clean and wholesome.
To be honest, I didn’t really have any? *shrugs* It is that good people! READ IT!
Please, pretty please just read it. It will give you a new look and maybe open your eyes to something that is a very real and problematic issue in our society. Also, the moral that was artfully woven in (without being preachy) was so applicable. I feel like in our day and age, we get these plans and we get so fixed on our own plans, that sometimes we forget that God may have a different plan. I will stop there. . . but I feel a post subject coming on.
~ Interview ~
Hi Ivy! Welcome to Ruffles and Grace! Thank you for being here. I am really excited for this post!
Thank you so much for having me! I’m so excited! 🙂
1~ I know you get asked this quite a bit, but for my readers sakes, what real life experiences inspired you to write Left to Die?
Left to Die was inspired mainly by my little sister, whom we adopted from China ten years ago. I was able to go to China with the rest of my family to get her, giving me a small glimpse of the horrific orphan epidemic plaguing today’s world. As I got older, I realized how most people ignored the orphan problem because it made them uncomfortable. I really wanted to write a book that would both raise awareness as well as honor the Chinese orphans…and my sister!
(Fun fact: My family has since adopted three more children after my sister. 🙂 )
2~ What was the hardest part of this book for you to write?
The orphanage scene. I actually got to visit my sister’s orphanage, and those images are forever burned in my memory. I conveniently forgot a lot of things about that visit because I didn’t want to remember how awful it was. In the first draft, I just skimmed the surface of the horrors of orphanages in that scene. When reading the draft to my mom, she asked why I was sugarcoating it. I told her I didn’t want to remember how bad it was.
Needless to say, she helped me realize that if I really wanted to make the book realistic, I needed to stop skimming sensitive issues.
3~ Who was your favorite character to create?
Jia!!! It’s the first time I’ve been able to evoke so much emotion from a non-verbal, sickly infant who does nothing more than sleep, cry, and gaze at people with her sweet chocolate eyes. 😉
4~ The two books you have written have been based on real life experiences and stories from your life, what do you see yourself writing in the future?
More of the same! 🙂 I love taking a real life story and twisting it into an effective plot. Most of my unpublished books and new ideas stem from someone’s real life experience–not necessarily from my life, though. 😉
5~ What is something that you want your readers to take away from reading your book?
Other than awareness of the worldwide orphan epidemic, the main thing I want people to take away from Left to Die is that even though we may think we have everything under control in our lives, we don’t know what God’s plan is. And sometimes, His plan is vastly different than ours.
Thank you again for being here Ivy! It has been such a pleasure to read your book and get to know you!
My absolute pleasure! Thank YOU for the opportunity! I hope we get to “see” a lot more of each other in the future! 🙂
By God’s Grace,