Crossing Oceans by Gina Holmes

I must begin this by saying that Gina Holmes is a truly insightful woman. Her blog, Novel Journey, is something to be admired and enjoyed by author and reader alike. She can ask some thought provoking questions that can get right to the heart of any issue that should be explored.

Gina Holmes began her career in 1998, penning articles and short stories. In 2005 she founded the influential literary blog, Novel Journey. She holds degrees in science and nursing and currently resides with her husband and children in southern Virginia. To learn more about her, visit or


I have read lots of books about dying women -- cancer of breast, skin, lungs, brain, etc -- most of them were excruciatingly poignant. I do not know if I could have read them all if I were close to someone dying, because I have the kind of personality that identifies, if at all possible, with the protagonist of the story.

Gina Holmes must have been close to someone who was a mother and who was dying to catch the intensity of feelings that this story captures. Either that, or she interviewed many mothers.

The way she writes this story, the reader is sitting on the porch with Jenny Lucas, and you can smell the lake on the moisture laden breeze. Emotions we take for granted seem to peak and rise rather than ebb and flow in Jenny's breast. She learns, in the few short months she has left, she learns about forgiveness... about what true love is rather than clingy infatuation... and she learns how a deep abiding relationship with God turns the bitterest of anger into a soft acceptance of what is best for her tiny daughter.

You will smile and you will cry. Reading this book is a good experienced. But, I did get to a point where I wonder if Jenny would ever die. So much happens here that it becomes a point of circumstance reaction rather than character growth. However, Jenny learns a lot. She records the lessons in her journal and that becomes a treasure. Made me understand why I love writing so much. It is because I feel a burning desire to pass along what I've learned. I so identified with this character. I believe you will, too. This one is a keeper.

Read the first chapter here


Lyn said...

I gave this book to a different friend at church who found it very emotional but ultimately hopeful - a difficult read for her since her husband of almost 50 years died a few years ago from cancer. But she said the writing was solid and the book might be a good one for pastors to read to help them understand the kinds of loss and grief families in their congregations experience.

Gina Burgess said...

I believe she was correct. It points out how important it is for the survivors to have all things smoothed out before the passing of a loved one.

Get widget