Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Taking Leaps and Finding Ghosts (Review)

Hi there!

Title: Taking Leaps and Finding Ghosts
Author:  Janet DeLee
Publisher:  Self-Published
Published Date:  1st May 2015
Rating: 4 Stars

*Thank you to the publisher for the review copy*

Synopsis: Dreams aren’t just for the young, and Ginny Lawther is happy to prove that even at the age of fifty-eight she can still brave a leap of faith…she just needs a little prodding from like-minded individuals. Step one: place an ad in the local newspaper inviting other dreamers to form an Ideal Life Club. Step two: see if anyone shows up.

When Ginny meets four hopeful strangers at the first club meeting, she thinks they’re off to a great start.

Now it's only a matter of time before the sixty-something widow Hilda turns her crafting into a full-time career; the twenty-something Jerry becomes a professional musician; and the thirty-something housewife Lydia publishes her cookbook. That is, until the rugged divorcé, Lee, sets a goal to solve his ghost problem—and upends all their lives!

Suddenly the support group isn’t just trying to navigate the ups and downs of pursuing their dreams; they’re also wrestling with a strange cast of spirits who keep interrupting their endeavors. What do these apparitions want? And why have they latched on to the Ideal Lifers?

Haunting, humorous, and hopeful, Taking Leaps and Finding Ghosts sparks the imagination and breathes unexpected life into everyday reality.

Review: I would say that this book is a standalone, however it is connected to DeLee’s first novel. However, it can still be read as a standalone.

I was pretty skeptical when I first chose this book because I didn’t think it would be my kind of book. However, I decided to give it a chance and read it this month because of its mention of ghosts. I am certainly glad that I did because there is a lot more to this novel than meets the eye.

It is told from multiple points of view of all those who are members of the Ideal Life Club. I loved the idea of such a club where we can all aspire to reach for our dreams. In general this book was so inspiring as a whole and made me so happy by the end of it. I even found myself doing the club exercises as I was reading the book in hopes to make progress towards my own dream – which is being a published author. The book is something a reader can participate in because of those exercises and I am sure nearly everyone can relate to if they have a dream of some sort they want to pursue.

There were five main characters in this novel and you get to follow all their journeies pretty closely except for Lydia’s whose we only see once or twice. We have Jerry who is aiming to overcome him stage fright so he can perform. There’s Hilda who is into craft making and wants to sell enough to live through it. Lydia is there who is a chef/baker aiming to sell and make her own cookbook for the sake of charity. The lead role is Ginny who is already an author but is aiming to become a homeowner. And lastly, there is Lee who is only aiming to get rid of ghosts who seem to be meddling with his work. At first many in the group are skeptical towards the idea of ghosts but later when it starts to affect them too, they start to believe.

This book crosses so many more themes than it lets on. There is a mention of courage and ambition of course, but it also touched on the themes of death and grief which I think was handled incredibly well.


Once or twice the book mentions religion although it isn’t something that takes up a lot of the book. I did think it was included just enough and handled exceptionally well too. I also have to bring in the friendship now that all these characters lean towards as they grow and develop throughout the story. Again, that was something lovely to see happening as the novel progressed.

The ghost story in this one isn’t too suspenseful but it was there and very well handled. I think it did have quite a bit to do with the plot and in the end the conclusion they reached as a group surprised me, but it wove all their lives together and everything seemed to fit into place. It was a clever conclusion.

Overall, this book left me feeling inspired, eager and happy after reading it. I couldn’t really ask for more.

Links: Goodreads and Amazon!

New Video! A book review of Final Orders by Irene Helenowski!



Olivia’s Question: Do you believe in ghosts? Why/why not?

Olivia-Savannah x

18 comments:

  1. This sounds like something I'd really like. I'm glad it inspired you to reach for your dream of becoming a published author. BTW, November is the month for #NaNoWriMo. Are you going to participate? I've signed up because I've also wanted to become an author eventually. :)
    @dino0726 from 
    FictionZeal - Impartial, Straightforward Fiction Book Reviews

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    1. I was thinking as I read it that this would be the kind of book suited to you. You should give it a shot! I have done NaNoWriMo three times actually? I am currently working on editing a novel and I was thinking that I could set myself a goal of editing a chapter a day instead of starting a new novel from scratch and never properly finishing just one :3 I wish you the best while doing it and am supporting you all the way.

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  2. Is this Christian Fiction? It seems to be very inspiring and also holds some religious morals, which is good. I'm in dire need of some uplifting right now. Seriously, I could use this book. I hope that you finish your novel and that I get a chance to read it. Great review!

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    1. It doesn't really classify as Christian fiction because it only mentions it once or twice in the novel and doesn't focus on it at all. But Ginny is a believer. You could like this one! Thanks Lekeisha <3

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  3. Haha wow that's an interesting turn of events! I'm glad it helped you with your dream also :) it sounds like a very inspiring book, although I think it's really funny how ghosts suddenly become a part of the story! I'm not sure if it's something I would enjoy, but it does sound really good :)

    Lipstick and Mocha

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    1. The ghost story was separate but tied in with everything pretty neatly in my opinion :)

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  4. The themes of courage and ambition sound well done

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  5. I don't believe in ghosts but sometimes I wonder :)

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  6. I love a book that interacts with its reader; it makes the reading experience so much better in my opinion since it allows you to be a part of it. Regarding ghost, I'm torn. I don't think they exist but I do believe in them. It makes things more exciting, doesn't it? hahahaha

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    1. I know what you mean. Once your involved in doing something with the book, it can't fail in pulling you in deeper.

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  7. I can tell you really connected with this book. It is cool how it inspired you to focus more on your dreams as well.

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    1. I think the best books do that for me!

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  8. Well this book sounds awesome! I haven't heard of it before- but I am glad it turned out to be more that you hoped it would be. Thanks for sharing it!
    ~Jess

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    1. It is the kind of book I think you would enjoy a lot!

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