Title: Twang by Julie L. Cannon
Publisher: Abingdon Press
Genre: Contemporary, Christian, Fiction
Length: 336 pages
Book Rating: B
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
Twenty-three-year-old Jennifer Clodfelter believes she is destined to be a country music star. When her passion, determination and homemade demo tape were rejected by every music label in Nashville, she refused to give up. In just three years, a combination of guts and raw talent have propelled her on a journey of fame beyond her best dream.
Now Jennifer has all she ever wanted, only to discover that there is a dark side to the glitz and number one hits. She will have to decide whether to sing her pain to a loving audience or find the courage to face the music in the private studio of her heart.
Have you ever thought, “my life is nothing but a heartbroke country song”? In Julie L. Cannon’s latest release, Twang, country sensation Jennifer Clodfelter’s dysfunctional past comes to life in every song she writes. Her success comes at a price and revealing her secrets is slowly destroying her.
Jennifer Clodfelter is a naive country girl from Georgia who comes to Nashville dreaming of becoming a country singer. Surprisingly enough, success comes quickly and Jennifer Clodfelter is now Jenny Cloud, fast rising country superstar. But Jenny soon discovers that fame cannot heal her pain and following an ugly breakup, her deepest and most shameful secret refuses to stay buried.
Although, for the most part, Jenny’s journey is a lonely one, she does have a handful of friends who support her. One of the first people she meets in Nashville is Roy Durden. Roy has had his share of pain and misery and he finds a kindred spirit in Jenny.
Jenny’s manager, Mike Flint, guides her career every step of the way. While she cares for Mike, they are not friends, theirs is a business relationship. Mike is a formidable businessman, and Jenny has a difficulty standing up to him when her songwriting and singing begin to take such a huge toll on her.
Jenny’s salvation comes in the form of Tonilynn. Hairdresser, make-up artist and amateur therapist, Tonilynn becomes Jenny’s closest friend just when she needs one the most. Almost against her will, Jenny’s secret spill out of her with alarming frequency and Tonilynn is there to give hugs and offer advice. Tonilynn’s no stranger to bad decisions and rock bottom, and she puts all her faith and trust in God to help her through her difficult times. Along with her care and understanding, comes a huge helping of spiritual guidance and pleas for Jenny to offer forgiveness and put her troubles into God’s capable hands.
Twang is a well written and insightful novel. It is written in first person from Jenny’s point of view and her pain and anguish are deeply moving. Like many people, she is certain that fame and fortune is the answer to all her problems and she is shocked to discover that those troubles she brought with her did not magically disappear. Jenny never deals with her painful past. She holds fast to her bitterness and anger. She refuses to forgive the people who betrayed her instead of supporting her and protecting her.
There is very strong Christian element in Twang. It is not subtle and sometimes a little on the preachy side. It is a little repetitious on occasion, and at one point, even Jenny has had enough. But I found the overall message of what forgiveness is and is not to be quite thought-provoking and it reinforced my own ideals of what forgiveness entails. For anyone who has ever questioned why God allows such pain and suffering, Ms. Cannon provides a very thoughtful answer that I found quite compelling.
Twang by Julie L. Cannon is a beautiful novel about forgiveness, faith and trusting God. It is an enlightening and heartfelt story of healing that I highly recommend.