Things Left Unsaid

Things Left Unsaid

An emotional novel of family, friendship and forgiveness from Courtney Walsh, the New York Times bestselling author of Hometown Girl.Lyndie St. James is thrilled that her best friend, Elle, is getting married but unprepared for the emotional storm of the wedding week and returning to her childhood summer home of Sweethaven. The idyllic cottage community harbors some of her...

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Title:Things Left Unsaid
Author:Courtney Walsh
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Things Left Unsaid Reviews

  • Denise Hershberger

    This is the most powerful book I've read all year! Walsh writes such authentic characters dealing with such realistic issues that you can see yourself or someone close to you in at least one of the characters and/or situations. I don't think I've ever read a book where I felt so much empathy for so many characters while at the same time seeing glimpses into my own life and the lives of some of my close friends.

    This book will make you examine your own life and how you've chosen to accept, deny, o

    This is the most powerful book I've read all year! Walsh writes such authentic characters dealing with such realistic issues that you can see yourself or someone close to you in at least one of the characters and/or situations. I don't think I've ever read a book where I felt so much empathy for so many characters while at the same time seeing glimpses into my own life and the lives of some of my close friends.

    This book will make you examine your own life and how you've chosen to accept, deny, or questions God's grace in your life. It will also remind you that forgiveness can be given immediately but isn't always felt as quickly deep down inside.

    There are so many relatable characters in this story - which is really a combination of many people's stories that intertwine - that I truly believe this book will be a great connection for anyone. I really loved the vast cast that included married and single, older and younger, and strong Christians and those growing in their faith. The diversity in so many areas led me to lots of soul searching about both my past and present.

    Usually, when I'm reading a book I can figure out what will happen because books tend to be predictable. This book was truly anything but predictable. I loved how more than once Walsh surprised me with a different scene than I was expecting. Multiple times she completely shocked me with what happened next in the story. But these moments were the most powerful in the whole book. And she included so many without ever making me feel like the book was overwhelmingly full of big moments. Everything just worked so well among all the characters and all their stories.

    I cried twice in this book. It was simply so beautiful, powerful, and honestly gut-wrenching at times. It truly spoke to me about the importance of time with God in prayer, treasuring family and friendships, and being honest with yourself and those you love.

    This book will definitely be on my top reads of 2018 list!

    I received an advanced copy of this book through NetGalley. This is my honest review.

  • Amanda

    I loved this novel. I couldn't put it down since I got the mobi. I have never read anything from Walsh, so I didn't know what to expect. The cover and the title is what I was drawn to, and I wasn't disappointed. In fact, it'll be difficult to pick up another book quickly due to the book hangover I'll have with these character I just spent the day with.

    There are so many secrets, but Walsh does a wonderful job keeping the secrets straight with the characters and then revealing them at the perfect

    I loved this novel. I couldn't put it down since I got the mobi. I have never read anything from Walsh, so I didn't know what to expect. The cover and the title is what I was drawn to, and I wasn't disappointed. In fact, it'll be difficult to pick up another book quickly due to the book hangover I'll have with these character I just spent the day with.

    There are so many secrets, but Walsh does a wonderful job keeping the secrets straight with the characters and then revealing them at the perfect times. I think if it were to happen differently, or when I wanted to while I was reading I would've been disappointed in the ending.

    It was a light, good feeling novel even though the story line revolves around the disappearance and death of a friend, daughter, sister. Religion does play a pretty big role, but not in the overwhelming way. More like the just the right way.

    It was a wonderfully written novel about friendships, family, forgiveness and love that I thoroughly enjoyed reading. It will definitely be a topic of conversation for a while. I cannot wait to spread the message along to add to the Must Pick Up list when it comes out in stores. Definitely recommended and worth the read.

    Thanks to Netgalley for the early read.

  • Amy

    What a beautiful, beautiful piece of writing! Tender, heart wrenching. I suspect this concept of keeping the difficult things to ourselves is something everyone could relate to. Such an array of complex characters. I've never read any of the Sweethaven books, so perhaps there is more to all of these people, that I just don’t know about? I’m intrigued. There are so many characters in this story and each one of them play a pivotal role. Well done to Courtney for writing them each so intricately. T

    What a beautiful, beautiful piece of writing! Tender, heart wrenching. I suspect this concept of keeping the difficult things to ourselves is something everyone could relate to. Such an array of complex characters. I've never read any of the Sweethaven books, so perhaps there is more to all of these people, that I just don’t know about? I’m intrigued. There are so many characters in this story and each one of them play a pivotal role. Well done to Courtney for writing them each so intricately. This book is described as an emotional novel, of which it most certainly is. Tragedy ten years earlier has impacted every single one of them. The best friends. The immediate family. Family friends. There's so much pain, stemming from the grief they still feel. No one wants to come back 'home' to their summer cottages by the lake. The place where it happened. They are back in Sweethaven and it's time to face up to everything they've been running from. Such an eye opener into the process of healing. Spiritual renewal. Finding lasting love, based on selflessness and kindness. Such a great read that will inspire & uplift.

    I received a complimentary copy of this book. This is my honest review.

  • Katie W

    I couldn't put this hauntingly beautiful book down, nor could I stop thinking about it when I absolutely did have to set it aside for a moment. This story is all wrapped up in one tragic secret involving a death. Cassie, Lyndie, and Elle were inseparable during the summers while growing up and with Cassie's unexpected death years earlier, the other two have drifted apart.

    It's been ten years since Cassie's death and it seems that she was the glue of this broken, tangled cast of characters, yet th

    I couldn't put this hauntingly beautiful book down, nor could I stop thinking about it when I absolutely did have to set it aside for a moment. This story is all wrapped up in one tragic secret involving a death. Cassie, Lyndie, and Elle were inseparable during the summers while growing up and with Cassie's unexpected death years earlier, the other two have drifted apart.

    It's been ten years since Cassie's death and it seems that she was the glue of this broken, tangled cast of characters, yet they're coming together once again for Elle's wedding and to remember Cassie. This book does not spell out the struggles that Elle and Lyndie have endured over the years, nor does it reveal the secrets that each hold relating to that night long ago. As the story progresses, these guilty secrets are gradually uncovered and the emotion relating to these revelations will rip and shred the heart. And what do you do when a character makes choices differently than you would? Why, you forgive them, of course!

    The feelings these characters brave are raw, powerful, and vivid, but an underlying current of hope shadows the words. I was completely invested and grasped in the clutches of this book and in the lives of these characters. This is an intoxicating read and the messages of hope, love, forgiveness, and second chances are ones that will stay with you long after the last page is read.

    Content: moderate romantic elements (kissing, premarital relations, a tough choice); moderate religion (grace, forgiveness, hope, repenting, etc); mild+ violence (death); underage drinking

    *I received a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are my own and were voluntarily given.*

  • Susan Snodgrass

    'She was sitting in the deepest sorrow of her life and she was sinking.'

    Things Left Unsaid is one of the most powerful books I have ever read. This one will definitely be in my top ten books of 2018. Courtney Walsh has crafted a novel that pulls at your heart in a way that you won't even begin to imagine.

    Lyndie St. James is invited to be her once best friend Elle's maid of honor but she must travel back to Sweethaven to do so, a place she never wants to see again, a place that is the site of inc

    'She was sitting in the deepest sorrow of her life and she was sinking.'

    Things Left Unsaid is one of the most powerful books I have ever read. This one will definitely be in my top ten books of 2018. Courtney Walsh has crafted a novel that pulls at your heart in a way that you won't even begin to imagine.

    Lyndie St. James is invited to be her once best friend Elle's maid of honor but she must travel back to Sweethaven to do so, a place she never wants to see again, a place that is the site of incredible hurt for her. She and Elle and Cassie were best friends there each summer, but Cassie died 10 years ago and her parents are planning a celebration of life evening during the wedding week. Lyndie so doesn't want to be there and dredge up all the pain of her last few days there ten years earlier. She is absolutely unprepared for this visit.

    Cassie's parents and brother, Tucker, have all been keeping secrets, the parents drifting apart for years, not sure if they can even survive as a couple. Tucker turned to alcohol and moved as far away as he could get. He doesn't want to come back, either, but he is following the advice of his pastor to get the hurt out in the open and try to heal.

    The bride, Elle, also struggles with so many secrets, afraid that if she speaks them out, she will forever be unloved and unwanted.

    Each of these characters are hiding their secrets, hoping they can some day be free, but so afraid to speak them out and seek forgiveness. But secrets destroy, secrets cripple and secrets tend to be buried by those who bear them.

    Courtney Walsh has written a very powerful novel. My own heart hurt for these people. I wept through passages as I saw how God moved in the lives of His children. It is not His desire to see His children carry such heavy loads. He wants to relieve us of the pain we carry, but, and it's a big but, will we allow Him to take that load off our backs? These characters will have to reach that point and decide if they truly can have the courage to shed the secrets and allow God to minister to their hearts.

    I was so blown away by the incredible amount of emotion in this book! Walsh is at her finest here. Highly recommended.

    *I was given a preview copy of this novel by Net Galley. My opinions here are entirely my own.

  • Madison

    4.5 stars

    Things Left Unsaid is a poignant story of terrible tragedies and regret, of love and forgiveness and grace. At first a little slow and confusing, Things Left Unsaid quickly wormed its way into my heart and captured my attention. It’s the perfect book for readers who enjoy touching stories of loss, grief, second chances, romance, family, forgiveness and love.

    Lyndie left Sweethaven after the death of her best friend Cassie and vowed to never return. But with her friend Elle’s wedding taki

    4.5 stars

    Things Left Unsaid is a poignant story of terrible tragedies and regret, of love and forgiveness and grace. At first a little slow and confusing, Things Left Unsaid quickly wormed its way into my heart and captured my attention. It’s the perfect book for readers who enjoy touching stories of loss, grief, second chances, romance, family, forgiveness and love.

    Lyndie left Sweethaven after the death of her best friend Cassie and vowed to never return. But with her friend Elle’s wedding taking place in the town they once called their summer home and the ten-year anniversary of Cassie’s death coinciding on the same weekend, Lyndie has no choice but return to the place that took so much from her. Returning to Sweethaven also means coming face-to-face with Cassie’s brother Tucker, the man Lyndie has tried so hard to forget.

    There are so many stories woven into this one book. There is Lyndie and her story of emotional withdrawal after the events ten years ago. There is Tucker, his grief for the death of his sister, the guilt he feels for everything that happened that night and his desperate attempts to continue living a new life, especially when faced with the ghosts of his past. Elle’s story is multilayered with her secrets and regrets of that night and of her childhood, with her relationship with her fiancé Travis, of the history they both shared with Cassie, of the secrets she still hides and the battles with her overbearing soon-to-be-mother-in-law, all as she faces a week-long string of festivities for a wedding she’s not sure she deserves. Then there is the story of Cassie’s mother, cast adrift after the death of her daughter and the continued absence of her son, as well as the growing distance between herself and her husband. Together, these characters and the character around them slowly share their stories, their grief, hurts and regrets. And together, they slowly find the grace to forgive - each other, but especially themselves.

    I’ve never met a group of people so reluctant to talk to each other. Or even just to talk at all. Especially when they are all thinking the same thing. Things Left Unsaid is a complex and deeply layered story. It took me a little while to get truly hooked by the story and the characters. At first, only vague hints about the past and ‘that night’ are shared. It’s not until a little over halfway through the story that the characters, finally, finally start stalking. And that’s when things start to get interesting. As they each begin to unburden themselves and share their pain.

    Things Left Unsaid is a story about love - romantic love (there is a wedding in this book after all, as well as a story of second-chance love), and love between friends and family. It’s a touching and encouraging story about forgiveness and learning to live.

    The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.

    Find more reviews, reading age guides, content advisory, and recommendations on my blog

  • Sarita

    Courtney Walsh is a name that keeps popping up among my Goodreads friends and who was on my wish list of authors to try. I'm really glad I finally gave this author a try. This was a story filled with emotional hurting people who had to deal with a tragic event from their past and their own quilt for their part (true or self-assigned).

    There was a lot of characters with their own POV, but the voice of each character was unique and separated between chapter that it was never difficult to follow. Ea

    Courtney Walsh is a name that keeps popping up among my Goodreads friends and who was on my wish list of authors to try. I'm really glad I finally gave this author a try. This was a story filled with emotional hurting people who had to deal with a tragic event from their past and their own quilt for their part (true or self-assigned).

    There was a lot of characters with their own POV, but the voice of each character was unique and separated between chapter that it was never difficult to follow. Each of these characters had to find their own path to healing and overcoming their struggles. My heart ached the most for Lyndie and Elle (and Tucker).

    This was a great story about how past mistakes could take a hold on you and how it can affect future decisions (both good and bad), the power of letting go and forgiveness. What I appreciated from this story was that even though the characters did find healing, it was clear that they still had a path to walk in their new found freedom (spiritual growth required).

    I'm not sure if the author plans a sequel, if not, I would have liked an epilogue far into the future to see what happened in these characters lives, especially two where I felt that their story is unfinished but left the reader with hope and promise.

    Recommended to fans of Christian contemporary fiction. For those readers who like a clean christian read, there is mention of pre-marital sex, alcohol, drunkenness etc.

    *I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.*

  • Den

    faith, women, thrill seekers, songwriters, friendships, second chances, grief, weddings, familial dysfunctions, finding the place where you belong, making amends, standing up for yourself, coming home

    This book has got so much heart and I like how the emotions the characters are feelings just seem to spill over. Everything is

    faith, women, thrill seekers, songwriters, friendships, second chances, grief, weddings, familial dysfunctions, finding the place where you belong, making amends, standing up for yourself, coming home

    This book has got so much heart and I like how the emotions the characters are feelings just seem to spill over. Everything is just so real for me.

    It was a bit slow in the beginning but I was glad that it picked up its pace once everyone arrived in Sweethaven. Everyone in this book seem to have chips on their shoulders but I liked how the characters developed over the course of the book.

    I'm already looking forward to reading the next installment and will sure check out the author's other works.

  • Fiction Aficionado

    This was an emotional read, and a difficult one at times for me. I am NOT the kind of person who can hold big hurts close to my chest like these characters. Perhaps I was just blessed in having a mother whom I could confide in, no matter what; perhaps I’ve been fortunate in not having experienced situations like the ones these characters have experienced. Whatever the case, I’ve never managed to carry the burden of guilt for very long, and so to spend a whole novel with characters struggling und

    This was an emotional read, and a difficult one at times for me. I am NOT the kind of person who can hold big hurts close to my chest like these characters. Perhaps I was just blessed in having a mother whom I could confide in, no matter what; perhaps I’ve been fortunate in not having experienced situations like the ones these characters have experienced. Whatever the case, I’ve never managed to carry the burden of guilt for very long, and so to spend a whole novel with characters struggling under ten years of its accumulated weight? Yeah, it was a bit tough for this cookie. I was very keen to get to the resolution so I could breathe freely again!

    But one of the things I love about fiction is the way it allows me to experience life from a different perspective—one completely outside my own realm of experience—and unlike other novels where lack of communication can be downright irritating, I felt the honest struggle of these characters, even if there was a part of me that kept saying, “If you would just talk to someone about it . . .” It may not have been the way I would have responded, but it was very believable (and understandable) that these characters had held their secrets close the way they did.

    There were a few times in the first half of the novel where the story felt a little slow and the characters’ inner narratives a little repetitive, but I couldn’t help but be drawn into their story. Through the four point-of-view characters, we get to experience a range of struggles, from perceived guilt and intense regret through to grace and forgiveness, and from the shame that holds us back from being fully known to the freedom and joy that comes from allowing those we love to see all of who we are—the best parts and the worst parts—and love us in spite of ourselves.

    Definitely an emotional read, but also a rewarding one.

    I received a copy of this novel from the publisher. This has not influenced the content of my review, which is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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