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Leota's Garden [Paperback]

Francine Rivers
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Paperback: 425 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers; Reissue edition (Feb 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 084233498X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0842334983
  • Product Dimensions: 20.9 x 13.9 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 32,869 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

Acclaimed Christian fiction writer Francine Rivers's Leota's Garden uses the image of the garden as a metaphor for the cycles of life that the characters experience. While the story spins around a number of lives, they are all connected through Leota--an 84-year-old grandmother--and her garden, which was once a place of beauty and hope but has in recent years gone to ruin. Beginning in desolation--Leota has been neglected by her self-centred daughter, whose obsession with getting her own daughter into the best college has driven them apart--the novel slowly shows the weaving together of lives in the mysterious ways of grace: a proud and narrow-minded college student ends up learning more from Leota than he'd bargained for, and the granddaughter Leota had never been allowed to know shows up looking for some answers, and even more, looking for Leota herself. A garden blooms, the novel suggests, by getting the hands a little dirty doing the hard work of love. --Doug Thorpe --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.



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CORBAN SOLSEK'S HEART DROPPED AND HIS STOMACH CLENCHED tight when he saw the B on his sociology proposal. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Leota's Garden is healing & heartwarming. 14 Jan 2001
By A Customer
I was surprised by how much I loved this book. I was so glad to find a writer who has composed an Angelus to the mending of the human spirit; a canticle of conversations with God.
Set in the modern San Francisco Bay area, Leota's children have become hollow successes carrying the burden of their wounded spirits & tainting their own children in the same way.
Back when Leota was lively & young there was a war on, the men were away fighting & someone had to bring home the bacon. This Leota did very well & continued when her husband came home too broken be of help. It was in the garden that Leota found her refuge, her chapel where she spoke to her God & it was in there that beauty abounded. Then everyone left except Leota.
Into this lonely old woman's life of meditation & hurt comes a callow Berkeley student with his thesis writing itself in his brain & his heart on hold. Leota's granddaughter also turns up with a suitcase full of pain & questions.
A redemptive & contemplative read, well written & rewarding.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling, moving and original 25 April 2007
This is one of Francine Rivers' best novels, in my opinion. Now, I'm not an over-emotional person, which some people find odd considering I'm both a woman and a mother, but this story of a mother, a daughter and a grandmother is a compelling read that moved even me. The story's main character is the feisty grandmother, an intelligent old lady with a lot of emotional backpack, hidden behind her complex layers of memories and spunk, which nobody understands - and you can't help but fall in love with this gal and feel that suddenly you understand your own grandparents better. A delightful and meaningful read!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A pleasant read 25 April 2011
Leota and her daughter don't get along. As a result Leota and her granddaughter Annie haven't spent much time together. The story focusses onthe relationship between Annie and Leota and examines the reasons for the breakdown in the relationship between Leota and her children. I was furious with an incident that occurred towards the end of the book but other than that it was a pleasant read but a little bit too samey with some of her others, particularly a mother's hope and a daughter's dream
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly interesting 29 Mar 2011
By Maria
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is the first novel by this author that I have read but it will not be the last. The heroine seems too good to be true at times but she is quite young, & there is a bit too much "Preaching". In spite of that , the interplay between the characters covers many aspects of society. There are young, old, families, neighbours do-gooders, well intentioned but mistaken people & the genuinely helpful. Emotions from greed, love, bitterness, & regret are all covered. One thing that struck me was the statement that "Silence is not always the best way". This is a book I will recommend to friends, & one of the very few that I will read again & even better it was free.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The trials of family life 1 Oct 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have read a number of books by Francine Rivers and have enjoyed each one. Leota is a grandmother who is estranged from her children but in her later years her grandaughter contacts her and they go on to have a very close relationship. This is a story of how misunderstanding can blight a family for decades.

However, I find that in this book, as in all Francine Rivers' books, that the heroine or hero is always too good to be true.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Convicting and heart-warming 14 Feb 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This is the first Christian novel I have read and boy, what a read! The story is captivating and deals with a variety of challenges any of us could face. The characters are easy to relate to in turns and I couldn't put the book down. I can't wait to read more of her work. The Lord has truly blessed the author with a talent not only for story-telling but of protraying His message in a way people can relate to.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful 20 May 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A beautiful story of faith, family dynamics and loss. Not everyone will like the heavy Christian message but it was beautifully written and believable and utterly compelling. One of the best books I read this year so far.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting story, but frustratingly preachy 16 April 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Firstly, I really enjoyed the plot of this book, the author did a pretty good job of building the characters and drawing out the story in a way that the reader couldn't tell where the story was going (my favourite kind of story). I do think some of the main characters could have used a bit more development - sometimes I found myself surprised at the way a character was suddenly acting, because the behaviour didn't really fit with how the author had built the character so far. But all in all, I did enjoy the story - though I found the ending troubling.

Having been lucky to grab this lovely story free on my Kindle, I had only read the short Amazon product description before I downloaded it and so had no idea it was a Christian book. I grew up Catholic, but I have long since grown to be spiritual rather than religious because I just can't accept how much judgment of others there is in organised religions.

Unfortunately, I was very put off by the increasingly preachy and in your face religious aspects of the book. As so often happens with evangelical Christianity, the author tried so hard to convert me, the reader, to believing her own beliefs, that she only reaffirmed my opposition to organised religion.

I don't want to complain at length, I was lucky to get this book free on my Kindle and not only would it be obnoxious to complain about a free book, I also don't want to ignore the hard work the author put into this book. The core plot is a great story.

But please be warned, the preaching within the story will reach fever pitch by the end of the book and the author writes in quite a judgmental way, toward other religions and toward the characters in the book who don't fit the stringent Christian mould of behaviour...and the cult-like Christian ending was troubling and saddening to me, given where the author could have taken the story.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Really liked this one
Published 1 month ago by Julie C
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book
I love Francine Rivers books, they are so easy to read

I always find them very moving and with many lessons to learn in our own lives. Read more
Published 7 months ago by theresa bough
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it
One of the best book I've ever read.
All books written by F. Rivers equally good, and I've read them all. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Choosy shopper
5.0 out of 5 stars great
I found this book hard to put down. A sad ending but a lovely story. This book is another one to add to your collection.
Published 9 months ago by Mrs J Roberts
5.0 out of 5 stars Francine Rivers Great Writer
I chose this book because I saw it advertised in a radio magazine. I am not disappointed, it is brilliant and now mum is reading it.
Published 11 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Good
A good book well written a beautiful story with surprising twists.
A page turner with good morals.

Recommend to friends.
Published 17 months ago by H Neale
5.0 out of 5 stars Leota's Garden
Another marvellous book by Francine Rivers. I love them all. This particular story was like reading my own life story. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Mama Bear
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Book
My wife has enjoyed reading the book. She rates Francine as a good writer and wants to read more of her novels.
Published 20 months ago by Cliff James
3.0 out of 5 stars Badly typed
This book was an interesting story, however, the typing throughout was very off-putting. There were very many occasions when several words were strung together, eg; location 1185... Read more
Published on 11 Nov 2011 by AnnieS
4.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable easy reader
I really enjoyed this book especially as a freebie and even as a non believer of the lord, I had to do a lot of skipping over the prayer/thought parts. Read more
Published on 11 Oct 2011 by Nic'sKindle
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