Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Serial and Scenarios ~ Operation Bonnet ~ Kimberly Stuart

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Operation Bonnet
David C. Cook; New edition (February 1, 2011)
Kimberly Stuart

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kimberly says:

I am a writer of comedic fiction, and would like to suggest that you laugh regularly when reading my books. Let’s also try for one to two teary moments. If you are crying more than that, you don’t understand my sense of humor and should move on to another author.

I grew up in a book-loving home. Actually, that’s not entirely accurate. My mom loves books. My dad loves to read the first chapters of books and then make us all listen as he recites his favorite passages. I, however, enjoy reading books in their entirety and came into writing as a result of book-love. After earning two fancy degrees in education and Spanish, I promptly let the thinking part of my brain take a breather and instead became pregnant. (I’m sure a lot of other things happened between early literacy and pregnancy but I don’t really remember any of that. If you also have shared your uterus with another human, you understand.)

In an effort to author a book that would entertain my sassy, irreverent, breast-feeding/drooping friends, I wrote my first novel, Balancing Act. People were so nice to me after that, I decided to continue with writing. Also, I can’t craft, knit, or scrapbook, so what else was a nice, Christian girl to do?

In addition to writing books to make my friends laugh and cry, I observe the chaos at the home I share with my unfailingly supportive husband and three offspring. We’re doing our best and so far, no one’s been to prison.


Twenty-year-old Nellie Monroe has a restless brilliance that makes her a bit of an odd duck. She wants to be a private investigator, even though her tiny hometown offers no hope of clients. Until she meets Amos Shetler, an Amish dropout carrying a torch for the girl he left behind.

So Nellie straps on her bonnet and goes undercover to get the dish. But though she’s brainy, Nellie is clueless when it comes to real life and real relationships. Soon she’s alienated her best friend, angered her college professor, and botched her case.

Operation Bonnet is a comedy of errors, a surprising take on love, and a story of grace.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Operation Bonnet, go HERE.

Watch the book video trailer:

My Review:

I love a novel that makes me laugh and makes me pause at moments of poignancy in between laughs. Operation Bonnet is a delightful story that does just that. I would not have picked up the book based on the cover or the title. I'm not a fan of the Amish trend in Christian publishing. However, another reviewer recommended it to me, suggesting that she thought I just might love it and she was right.

Kimberly Stuart has written previous novels that I've either liked or liked a lot. Operation Bonnet blows them all out of the water and is one I loved.

Nellie is a twenty-year-old crazy-haired girl genius with a hunger for private investigating and a sacrificial love for her Nona. Nellie works at a golf shop, studies PI techniques and takes care of her Nona while her parents travel the world. Her best friend Matt helps her score sweet spying tools and listens to her rants. Nona is losing it, but it's slow enough and the spells are infrequent enough that Nellie thinks she can hold off the inevitable. Her life is full. Rich? Fulfilling? Not quite because she lives in a town where crime is rare, stealth is rarely required, and folks are pretty decent. Boring. Then Amos, the used-to-be Amish boy comes to town. He is hired by Tank, the golf club owner, for the annual project, this year, a mini-golf course. Amos is a walking culture shock with a concern. One that he thinks he could hire Nellie, P.I. to look into. She only will need to infiltrate the tight-knit Amish community to help him out. One that he has been firmly shunned from.

Nellie enters a stretching period where she helps, in a backwards, inside-out and upside-down sort of way. And in the process she grows up a little bit and finds out a lot about life.

I loved this novel. Charming, sweet, funny, sweet, touching, did I say sweet, and interesting. If you read one novel this year, I'm thinking you could do far worse than this one.