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Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

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Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#1 by L_Therese
» 31 Jul 2017, 12:53

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Heavenly Grille Cafe" by J. T. Livingston.]

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2 out of 4 stars
Review by L_Therese
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Angels walk among us, completing undercover assignments in order to help humans find God. At least, they do in J. T. Livingston’s book The Heavenly Grille Cafe. In this book, angels Max, Bertie, and Doug operate a small diner right off a Florida highway. They are present in order to touch lives, and when homeless, jobless, and penniless Amanda drives into the parking lot, she finds the care and support she needs to sort through her problems and burgeoning opportunities.

Some time later, the close-knit staff of the Heavenly Grille Cafe stumbles across Kris. Kris is heavily pregnant and has been abandoned by her boyfriend, the baby’s father. She has had a tough life and is reluctant to let anyone in, whether we’re talking about a friend, a mentor, a new love interest, or a Heavenly Father. Once she is persuaded to give this makeshift family a chance, though, drama follows swiftly. As events develop and dear ones are endangered, can bonds of friendship and faith in God see everyone through to the end, or will tragedy and fear tear the Heavenly Grille Cafe family apart?

This book has a clear religious message. Even disregarding the presence of angels, religion is intricately involved in many facets of plot and character. Faith and prayer are recurring motifs, and the reader’s frequent visits to heaven reinforce this emphasis.

Speaking of visits to heaven, the book deals heavily in side plots. It could easily be argued that the focus of the book as a whole is less on the resolution of the main plotline than on the resolutions of all the myriad side plots. Even Amanda’s deceased parents have a few chapters dedicated to them up in heaven. While some readers might appreciate the extra insights, these side stories do slow down the book considerably.

Characters are the book’s strongest asset. Many of the characters are multifaceted; even the villain has a story. Several of the characters exhibit notable development from the time of their introduction to the book until the end. The strength of the characters also helps bring together all (or at least most) of the side plots, showing how the other things happening around the main conflict influenced the various players.

I rate The Heavenly Grille Cafe 2 out of 4 stars. The book moved slowly and meandered quite a bit as it developed toward the main conflict. The editing could have been a little bit better as well, as occasional misspellings can be a little distracting. However, this book succeeded in presenting a quirky cast of characters, and the author used these characters to deliver a clear religious message, which was most likely the point all along. The reader’s enjoyment of the book will undoubtedly hinge on their attraction to the characters and their resonance with the book’s religious message. As a side note, author J. T. Livingston has published a sequel to this book. While it didn’t seem necessary to turn this book into a series, those who fall in love with the characters might enjoy another chance to live in their world.

******
The Heavenly Grille Cafe
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#2 by bookiegalke
» 01 Aug 2017, 01:20

that the book touches on matters of faith, kindness and religion is enough reason for me to invest my time reading. A little motivation is good for my personal development. thanks for the good review.
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#3 by Jaime Lync
» 01 Aug 2017, 01:24

Very thorough review! I am glad that they have the characters 'downpack' as some of my folks say. I am not sure if I would mind the side plots slowing down the main plot or not. Thanks for the review.
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#4 by kislany
» 01 Aug 2017, 01:28

Great review! I've actually seen this book on Goodreads and was thinking to add it to my TBR shelf, but I'm not so sure anymore. I really can't stand much books that move so slow without lots of stuff happening at least every couple of pages.
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#5 by Kinnera
» 01 Aug 2017, 05:46

Thanks for the great review! I do like multifaceted characters, but I do agree that character development should not take away from the main plot.
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#6 by kandscreeley
» 01 Aug 2017, 07:47

I love that the characters are quirky. I'm not sure about this book, though. I'll have to give it some more thought. Thanks for the review.
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#7 by Juliet Esther
» 01 Aug 2017, 08:14

Matters concerning faith seem interesting. Though the book seems to have errors as outlined in the review, I would like to read it, I'm only discouraged by the pace at which the book moves around the main topic,I think that is my only set off. Thanks for the nice review
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#8 by ReadingRebecca
» 03 Aug 2017, 19:43

This one sounds good. I really love diners and am a believer in faith. I also enjoy quirky characters, so this sounds like a good pick for me. I don't know about the slow pacing of the plot, though, so I guess I'll have to see about that. I was attracted to the book by its title.
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#9 by Afuglsan
» 03 Aug 2017, 22:11

This boom sounds like it has a lot of potential. I'm not sure it'll be next on my list to read, but looks cute. Very well written review.
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Re: Official Review: The Heavenly Grille Cafe

Post Number:#10 by Gifty Naa Akushia
» 12 Aug 2017, 17:12

It is such an elaborate review, I was attracted by the title of the book. However after reading the review I think my expectations were too high.
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