In All That Really Matters by Nicole Deese, we meet Molly McKenzie an influencer specializing in makeup products. She has an opportunity to audition for a show that may extend her reach but she has to prove her relatability first. She and her boyfriend-turned-manager decide she needs to volunteer at transitional home.
My Review of All That Really Matters
When Molly first started volunteering, she’s completely in it for how she can use it to advanced her career. But within a few short weeks, she realizes that spending time with the staff and occupants at The Bridge are changing her goals.
But Molly isn’t the only person who changes. Her presence at The Bridge is having positive effects on other persons.
The Characters in All That Really Matters
As the daughter of missionaries, Molly grew up feeling left out. Her desires and abilities didn’t seem to fit into a family that was focused on living simply and serving others.
I got the feeling while reading this book that Molly’s parents never really saw her because she didn’t fit into their lifestyle. This may be why Molly had convinced herself that she needed to go in the opposite direction of her family members.
When Silas first met Molly, it seemed as if he dismissed her because she didn’t fit the mold of someone he believed could do the job at hand. It could also have been that he had really high standards.
Still, both Molly and Silas matured over the course of All That Really Matters. At the end of the book, the things she never wanted for herself or thought she would have been good at, have become the things she wants. Silas realizes that the woman he had dismissed as unsuitable was exactly what he, and his foundation needed.
The romance between Molly and Silas developed slowly. It was a sweet transition that saw both characters becoming a better version of themselves.
The Themes in All That Really Matters
There is a theme of the redemptive quality of God’s love throughout this story. It was subtle in the beginning because a lot of the chapters were from Molly’s perspective and she was not all about God. But as she developed and matured, she became more open to the work of the Holy Spirit and the faith element became stronger.
I liked the way Ms. Deese allowed Molly to come into a realization that she needed to be saved on her own. She was literally surrounded by Christians but none of them forced their religion on her. They simply lived in a way which brought honor to God and allowed Molly to see and accept what was missing from her life.
This is a great read that would be a perfect fit for persons who love transformation or coming of age stories.
I received an advanced reader’s copy from the publishers through NetGalley and Just Read Tours; a positive review was not required.
About All That Really Matters
Molly McKenzie’s bright personality and on-trend fashion and beauty advice have earned her an impressive social media following, as well as a shiny monthly paycheck. When her manager-turned-boyfriend tells her of an upcoming audition to host a makeover show for America’s underprivileged youth, all her dreams finally seem to be coming true. There’s just one catch: she has little experience interacting with people in need.
To gain an edge on her competitors, she applies to volunteer at a transitional program for aged-out foster kids during summer, only the program’s director, Silas Whittaker, doesn’t find her as charming as her followers do.
But since forfeiting a goal has never been her style, Molly’s only option is to accept the terms Silas lays out and submit to his rules–even the most ridiculous ones pertaining to social media.
Soon as the residents of the home become more than a means to pad her career resume, and Silas becomes more than an obstacle on her path to fame, her once-narrow focus expands to include the deep needs of those she’s serving… and perhaps the ones she’s neglected inside herself as well. It took years to build her platform, but only one summer to discover what really matters most.
About Nicole Deese
Nicole Deese is a Carol Award winner and a RITA and INSPY Award finalist. When she’s not working on her next contemporary romance, she can usually be found reading one by a window overlooking the inspiring beauty of the Pacific Northwest.
She lives in small-town Idaho with her husband and three children. Find her online at www.nicoledeese.com.
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