Book Review of "Leaning into the Curves" ... by C.L. Beck

Recently, the opportunity arose to do a review of the book, Leaning into the Curves, written by Nancy Anderson and Carroll Hofeling Morris, and the book sounded intriguing, so I accepted.

From the Back Cover of Leaning into the Curves
Molly is happy with her life the way it is, taking the classes she loves and performing with the Fiddling Finleys. But everything changes when her husband, Hank, retires. She's still trying to adjust to this new phase of life when he brings home a Honda Gold Wing—even though he knows she hates motorcycles! Things go from bad to worse when he joins the Temple Riders Association, a “Mormon motorcycle gang” that combines road trips with temple work. Faced with the prospect of being left behind when Hank rides with with his new friends, Molly starts making some changes of her own.

What Other People are Saying about Leaning into the Curves
A Mormon Motorcycle Gang?! Who knew?! The Temple Riders Association (TRA) is interesting enough on its own to fill a novel. When it enters the life of solid-as-a-rock Hank and artsy-motor-cycle-phobic Molly, it puts their marriage to the ultimate test. Though I'm not an empty nester, I related to many of the conflicts Molly and Hank have to resolve as they realize once again just how different they are. I found their adventures and the change in perspective they lead to both entertaining and enlightening. Leaning Into The Curves is populated with fun, colorful characters I won't soon forget. A wonderful novel for fiction lovers of any age. ~ Keri, customer review at DeseretBook.com

For a fun interview with the authors, go to LDS Women's Book Review.

My Opinion of Leaning into the Curves
I'd heard of the Temple Rider's Association before reading this book, so had a small inkling what the group did. However, I must admit that I had no in-depth idea how it worked or why they did it. Leaning into the Curves did a great job of explaining, in a fictional setting, that the group wasn't a "gang" and giving the reasons behind why the story's characters combined riding motorcycles with visiting LDS temples—that is, to ride motorcycles because they love the feeling of freedom and adventure, and to visit LDS temples in order to serve the Lord.

What I especially enjoyed about this book was the insight given into the minds of LDS women through the main character, Molly, and into the relationship issues that can arise between a husband and wife at retirement. There were several times when I laughed at the accurate, humorous way in which the authors portrayed the differences in how men and women think—especially when it came to Molly's fear of motorcycles, and Hank's feeling he no longer needed to be held to his promise to never ride one.

Although I don't think Anderson and Morris necessarily intended for the book to be a primer on the LDS culture and mindset, they did an excellent job of portraying both of those, and accomplished it with a fun, easy-to-read story. I'd recommend this book to both men and women ... just to get them thinking about retirement, how to spend time together without driving each other crazy, and the need to really express feelings in a relationship. Not to mention recommending it for the fun of reading a book that they'll enjoy!

The book is geared for readers who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons), and although those who aren't members might enjoy the story, there will be religious terms that are unknown to them. Despite that, anyone who can relate to enjoying motorcycles; to being at, or near, retirement age; or to the issues that crop up when husbands and wives spend a significant amount of time together will enjoy the book.

To Purchase Leaning into the Curves
You can purchase Leaning into the Curves at LDS bookstores near you, as well as online at DeseretBook.com.

(Disclosure: This book was given to me by Deseret Book, for review purposes. I was not compensated in any other way, and my opinion of the book is my own.)


Cathy Witbeck said...

Cindy it sounds like a fun one. I'll bet my mom would get a kick out of it. My dad rides a motorbike to herd cattle.

Carroll said...

Thanks for the great review and for helping Nancy and me get the word out about this book!

To read about our adventures at the Temple Riders 2010 rally, go to our blog at http://crustyoldbroads.blogspot.com

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