Author: Cindy K. Sproles
Genre: Historical Fiction
Release Date: June 27, 2023
How long is a body expected to keep a secret?
When Minerva Jane Jenkins was just fourteen years old, she married a man who moved her to the mountains. He carried with him a small box, which he told her held gold. And when he died fifty years later, he made her promise to tell no one about the box or the treasure it contained.
Now at ninety-four, Minerva is nearing the end of what has sometimes been a lonely life. But she's kept her promise. Even so, rumors of hidden gold have a way of spreading, and Minerva is visited by a reporter, Del Rankin, who wants to know more of her story.
As an unlikely friendship develops, Minerva is tempted to reveal her secret to Del. But the truth of what's really buried in the box may be hidden even from her.
Reviewer: Paula Shreckhise
Steeped in the culture of the Appalachian Mountains in the early 1900s, this story is a gem. It centers around Minerva Jenkins, who made a promise to her husband on his deathbed. A promise she keeps for almost 40 years until Del, a reporter, comes asking questions.
The vivid descriptions put you squarely in the story: “I saw the sunset. Streaks of orange and red. Fury yellows. The clouds blended in as though an angel dipped his fingers in them and gingerly stirred, making whips of purple and deep alabaster.”
Minerva, at 94, is lonely, set in her ways, and feisty as all get out. Her mountain sayings were a hoot. I could not help but admire her and her story of a lifetime of wondering if she was good enough. She questions her promise and how long she must keep it because, after all, her word is valuable.
Del brings questions and dredges up old hurts. But Del also brings with him a caring spirit. “Blood does not make a relationship. Kindness, caring, love make a family. You don’t have to be blood to be a perfect fit.”
Do not miss this immersive tale of Minerva, who lived on godly principles, with humor and sacrifice, and still had much to learn even in her advanced years.
A complimentary copy of this book was provided by Revell through Interviews and Reviews. I was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
Reviewer: Adriann Harris
No author writes Appalachian historical fiction like Cindy K. Sproles. When you read This Is Where It Ends, you will find yourself on an emotional roller coaster throughout, so grab a box of tissues but be ready to laugh out loud at the same time as you join 94-year-old Minerva Jane Jenkins at the end of her life.
Minerva, a tough-as-nails mountain woman, promises to keep a secret that is not hers and then asks the question how long do you keep it? Oh, what a dilemma that secret caused. As Minerva tries to find the answer to this question, the secret itself manifests into something that may not be true but could put her life in danger. Due to this promised secret, visitors suddenly started arriving at her farm thirty years after Stately died.
A reporter, Delano Rankin, arrives first and is not interested in the secret so much as in Minerva herself. As their relationship develops and the true secret starts to unfold, they find themselves growing closer. Overall I cannot say enough about the main character Minerva, except you go, girl!
This beautiful heartfelt story has many Christian messages that will stay with you long after the last page is read. Thank you, Cindy, for writing this awesome story, as you had me hooked from the first page of your beautiful prose and kept me engrossed until the very end.
I requested and received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell via NetGalley through Interviews & Reviews. All the opinions are my own, and I was not required to give a positive review.
Reviewer: Lori Parrish
Oh my! Minerva Minerva! So many emotions and feelings you've rolled through me! Lots of twists and turns too.
What a raw and emotional story you've told. Times I've felt just like you. I have a husband like yours. I feel like I'm 2nd best to him and someone else. But you taught me many things along the way, too. I just hope that I can put them into practice.
Times I've wanted to scream at you because you are saying the same thing over and over, but what good's that gonna do? Absolutely nothing!
Times I've wanted to hug you. You're someone special, Minerva Jenkins!
You've taught us all some difficult lessons about life in general. I'm glad I've gotten to know you. You've made my heart that much fuller for knowing you.
Yes, the older generation is full of memories and history that shouldn't disappear because we are too busy to make time for our parents and grandparents. I'm so glad that I can honestly say that I did. They're worth knowing! I enjoyed this sweet story so much!
I know one thing, I'm NOT second best in Christ's eyes. He knows me and loves me for who I am. After all, He created you and me.
Thank you, Ms. Sproles, for a story of redemption and forgiveness that touches the heart deeply. Well done! I couldn't put it down until I was done.
I received a complimentary copy courtesy of Revell through NetGalley for my honest opinion.
Reviewer: Laura J. Davis
This is Where It Ends is a beautiful tale of love, loyalty, faith and keeping secrets.
The opening chapter captures your attention right away, and you are immediately in the mind of the main character, Minerva Jenkins. She is 94 years old and tough as nails. But she has a secret she's been keeping, one she shouldn't have to keep, and it's not even her secret. Her husband makes her promise as he's dying to keep his secret. This secret is hidden in a box, and now people are showing up at her farm because they believe the rumours that the secret is about gold.
The story is captivating, as is Minerva. She's a spunky little thing for 94. And her new "visitor," Del, is someone she's suspicious about, and rightly so. He says he is a reporter sent to find out about her story and why she was alone on the mountain. Unfortunately, while friendly and well-intentioned, his visit brings someone else to the mountain with a more sinister plan.
While the story is intriguing, it does get bogged down with a constant rehashing of Stately's secret and Minerva grappling with how long she should keep it.
With excellent detail and clear descriptions of the setting, I felt I was on the mountain with the characters. It is a book that many will probably need tissues for.
You will like This is Where It Ends if you enjoy historical fiction.
I received a complimentary copy from Revell through NetGalley for my honest review.
Reviewer: Conny Withay
“How long does a body keep a promise?” Minerva asks in Cindy K. Sproles’ novel, This Is Where It Ends.
This two-hundred-and-eighty-eight-page paperback targets those interested in historical fiction about dealing with the past and growing old in the Appalachian Mountains. With only one slang word, of heck, the topics of illness, physical abuse, and death may not be appropriate for immature readers. The ending includes an excerpt from another book and the author’s biography.
In this tale set in the late eighteen-hundreds, ninety-four-year-old Minerva has dutifully accepted her widowed life living the last forty years alone on Shoal Mountain in Kentucky. She always tried her best as a faithful, loving wife, even keeping a promise to her departed husband about a secret he asked her to keep. But when a young man comes to her land and creeps into her heart, will she stay true to her beliefs no matter the cost?
This story, written mainly in first-person, grasps the reader as they learn how secret sins can build up over the years, allowing bitterness, regret, and guilt to take over. Minerva’s quirky yet strong-willed personality is wonderfully written, while Del shines in his gentleness and thoughtfulness. The raw emotions of aging and dying are touching yet heartbreaking. I love the correlation of kudzu vines being like hatred and anger over-taking one’s life. The descriptions of living off the land and the beauty of being self-supportive while cautious in trusting others were savored.
Those who do not like books about rejection and acceptance when dealing with life and death may not care for this emotional story. Others may feel it bogged down with sadness and personal turmoil, yet it does have redeeming qualities of mercy, love, and grace.
With this being an advanced reader copy, I hope a few discussion questions can be added without giving away too much of the story. Since it does mention God and prayers to Him, I wish it contained the eternal plan of salvation.
If you like a tender read of a broken elderly woman trying to be a promise keeper, this one may have you shedding tears dealing with its ending.
Thanks to Revell and Interviews & Reviews for this complimentary book. I am under no obligation to give a positive review.
5/18/2023 07:20:16 pm
Thank you so much for wonderful reviews. I am so glad you liked it.
Your comment will be posted after it is approved.
Leave a Reply.
We are listed in The Book Reviewers Directory!