Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Author Robin Jones Gunn has made her mark in contemporary, Christian teen fiction.  Her Christy Miller series offers a fresh approach to YA fiction featuring a popular teen facing the challenges of the teenage world as a practicing Christian.  A second series focuses on Sierra Jensen who experiences some of the same challenges.  DEPARTURES combines two re-released stories from these series.

In NOW BOARDING AT GATE 10, Christy travels with her family back to the town where she grew up.  Her grandparents are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, and a party is being planned by the local church ladies.

Several years earlier Christy's father moved the family from the small Wisconsin town to California in search of a more stable financial situation.  The move worried Christy, but she managed to adjust and make some great friends.  Now she is actually nervous about returning to her hometown.  Will she still fit in?  Will her childhood friends remember her and welcome her for the brief visit?

Christy has barely arrived when she comes face to face with her old crush Matthew.  Maybe it's because of her recent breakup with Todd, but she finds her old feelings for Matthew resurfacing.  He seems to remember her fondly and immediately pulls her away from boring family duties for a whirlwind tour of her old stomping grounds. 

Matthew seems very interested in not only showing Christy a good time, but also rekindling their past relationship.  Christy is totally taken by surprise that Matthew isn't actively dating anyone and appears to be eager to make a connection.  Although, her instincts urge her to be cautious about diving into a new romance that might only disappoint in the end.

Sierra Jensen's story is titled IN THE EVENT OF A WATER LANDING.  She is traveling with her friend Jana, Jana's brother Gregg, and his friend Tim.  They are headed off to join their families on vacation.  Their late arrival means flying by themselves which has the adults worried. 

Perhaps they have cause to worry since the teens end up missing one flight and then a second before they actually arrive at their destination.  Once safely at the Montana lake, they join in the vacation activities.  Sierra plans to have a great time, but her friend Jana seems fixated on a romantic interlude with whatever cute guy is available. 

Sierra watches with disapproving eyes as Jana flirts with first one guy and then another.  It's not like Sierra is jealous; she is getting plenty of attention from the boys herself.  She just isn't sure she is comfortable with the kind of attention they are directing her way.  She wants to be friendly, but she also wants to be true to her beliefs and her promise to let God lead the way.

Fans of Robin Jones Gunn will be thrilled to see these two "lost" novellas and will have a good time reacquainting themselves with Christy and Sierra.

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