Reviewed by Sarah Varland
A Billion Reasons Why by Kristin Billerbeck
"...Kristin Billerbeck could write an article about toothpaste and it would be fascinating and enjoyable."
I love a good love story. Add
in a fabulous, vibrant setting, passionate characters, and references
to Cary Grant—and I’m sold.
Katie McKenna, the heroine, fled her hometown of New Orleans to escape her mistakes of the past, namely Luc DeForges. But when he waltzes back into her life with his irresistible arrogant charm and insists that she come home to sing at his brother’s wedding, she has no choice but to return. Returning means an uncomfortable meshing of Katie’s past and future. The passionate city that New Orleans is so famous for being mirrors the passionate person Katie was inside before she buried her personality under a put-together, reserved exterior. While she’s home, she must choose which version of herself she wants to be in her future.
There are a billion problems with Katie and Luc’s relationship. One of them is Dexter, a man Katie has deemed “safe” enough to marry because he evokes little emotion inside her. But Luc is determined to overcome this and other obstacles and win Katie’s heart.
A Billion Reasons Why was different from some of the other Kristin Billerbeck books I’ve read, but her voice still shines through in the writing. I’ve told people before that Kristin Billerbeck could write an article about toothpaste and it would be fascinating and enjoyable. I have not read anything of hers and been disappointed—she’s one of those names I can count on.
Something unique I loved about this book was the song references at the beginning of each chapter. I’m thinking that next time I read it—and I can almost guarantee you there will be a next time—I should listen to forties music. I also love the references to stars from days gone by—Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman, Bogey—Katie McKenna feels like she was born in the wrong era, and clearly I do too.
I also found myself very drawn into this story. I think it’s because it’s such a universal story—the characters are essentially looking for real love and redemption. Who can’t connect with that? I loved the progression of the love story between the main characters as well. Their story really is like a dance as they move closer to each other, then further away, and learn how to love each other for who they were in the past, but most of all, for who they are in the present.
Overall, this story truly swept me off my feet. And I can give you a billion reasons why it will sweep you off of yours too.
Sarah Varland lives in Georgia with her husband, son, and two dogs. When she's not busy teaching high school English or walking around with her nose stuck in a book, she enjoys spending time with her family outdoors doing things like hiking and kayaking. Sarah is currently pursuing publication as a novelist and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. You can read some of her thoughts on life, books, and the ministry fishbowl at her blog.