Amy Inspired

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Overview

Amy Gallagher is an aspiring writer who, after countless rejections, has settled for a career as an English professor in small-town Ohio just to pay the bills. All her dreams suddenly start to unravel as rejections pile up--both from publishers and her boyfriend. But just as Amy fears her life is stuck in a holding pattern, she meets the mysterious, attractive, and unavailable Eli.

She struggles to walk the fine line between friendship and something more with Eli, even as ...

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Overview

Amy Gallagher is an aspiring writer who, after countless rejections, has settled for a career as an English professor in small-town Ohio just to pay the bills. All her dreams suddenly start to unravel as rejections pile up--both from publishers and her boyfriend. But just as Amy fears her life is stuck in a holding pattern, she meets the mysterious, attractive, and unavailable Eli.

She struggles to walk the fine line between friendship and something more with Eli, even as staying true to her faith becomes unexpectedly complicated. When secrets, tragedy, and poor decisions cause rifts in Amy's relationships, she must come to terms with who she's become, her unrealized aspirations for her life, and the state of her faith. Can she dare to hope that she will find love and fulfillment despite it all?

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Starred Review.

A young woman grows into herself and her faith in this superbly written second novel from Pierce (Feeling for Bones), a minister's daughter. Amy Gallagher is a newly minted MFA graduate teaching freshman English at her alma mater. Struggling to find a market for her articles and stories, she secretly envies her carefree coffee barista roommate, Zoë, whose prolific prose is published regularly. Recently dumped by her university colleague, Amy resigns herself to takeout, TV, and grading papers to distract her from her dead-end love life and perpetual writer's block. But when Zoë invites her friend Eli for an extended stay in their apartment, Amy comes to know herself-and her faith-on different terms. Pierce crafts a tight, deliciously engrossing novel from start to finish. Readers will be captivated by Amy's relationships, struggles, and choices as much as they will be riveted by the author's seamless portrayal of them. This novel can-and should-be enjoyed not only by Christian readers but anyone in search of a great read.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764208508
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/1/2010
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

After completing a Master's in Creative Writing and working as an English professor in Ohio, Bethany Pierce now lives with her husband in Charlottesville, Virginia, where she works at an art studio and continues to write. Her first book, Feeling for Bones, was one of Publisher's Weekly's Best Books of 2007.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 32 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(8)

3 Star

(12)

2 Star

(5)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 32 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 20, 2011

    Not Very Inspiring

    I have to confess that I have struggled more with this book review than any other I have written thus far and, consequently, have dragged my feet about posting my review. I have read many glowing reviews of Amy Inspired, but I have to say that I just don't feel the same way. I really struggled to read and become engrossed in the story line. The characters just didn't seem to come alive to me and the interaction between them seemed artificial.

    There were elements in this book that just don't coincide with my perception of right and wrong. Unmarried, unrelated, young men and women living in the same apartment goes against my sense of propriety. The Bible admonishes us, in 1 Thessalonians 5:22, to "abstain from all appearance of evil." (KJV) We are also cautioned, in Romans 14:16, to "let not then your good be evil spoken of." In light of these two scriptures, I felt conflict over some elements of the story and that detracted from my overall enjoyment of the book. Perhaps I must chalk it up to my advanced age and the fact that I am extremely conservative in my views.

    I am vastly outnumbered in my opinion of Amy Inspired and that is fine because we all know that a book that one person loves, another will detest, and vice versa.

    A copy of this book was provided to me for review purposes by Bethany House Publishers. I was in no way obligated to provide a positive review and all statements contained herein are my honest opinion. I received no compensation in any form for providing my review.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2012

    Inspiration

    If u need help put ur situatiin at inspiratiom... hint its a book... doing an inspiration page

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 5, 2010

    Review of Amy Inspired

    In Bethany Pierce's Amy Inspired: A Novel, Amy Gallagher is an adjunct English professor with aspirations in many areas of her life. Having completed her master's degree, she wonders if she has settled once again in a comfortable job; she has only ever wanted to be a writer and yet her attempts at publication have brought only rejection letters. Her personal life too is at a standstill even as she watches others have relationships that blossom. When her friend and roommate invites Eli into their lives, however, Amy must seriously consider her own desires, her faith, and her writing. She must finally decide whether to follow her own path and believe in her dreams.

    Bethany Pierce has created characters that are compassionate and yet real, facing struggles from the mundane to the serious. Unlike many authors of Christian fiction, Pierce does not avoid the complexities of these situations and the challenges they pose to faith. By acknowledging the weaknesses of her characters, she instead reveals a faith that is indelible even as it adapts to the flow of events. In addition, Pierce also shows that faith can be expressed in multiple ways and voices, some conservative and some unconventional. In the end, the reader is left with a view of faith that is stronger through this wide view, one that accepts differences and difficulties.

    I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers. The opinions in this review are my own.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 30, 2012

    Kobe

    Sigh

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 21, 2012

    Great

    Loved this book. Did not want to put it down. Loved the interaction and tension between the characters.

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  • Posted July 19, 2012

    Beautifully written

    My motivation to write a review for this book stems mostly from the negative ones. I was shocked to find them, and became curious about how many of them were written by men. I found this book to be a breath of fresh air in the Christian Fiction genre. Which, by the way, I expected it to be because I took the time to read the jacket, and am familiar with the publisher. I couldn't put this book down, which hasn't happened in a while. I found the heroin to be completely relatable and believable. People have mentioned the dichotomy of faith and temporarily living with a member of the opposite sex and I wonder where their idea of Christian charity ends for the sake of propriety. I found the dialog both inner and outer to be very real, funny and inspiring. The only thing I was left wanting for was a more solidified ending. I would like to know for sure what lies ahead for Ms. Pierces characters. I hope to see many more books from this author.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2012

    Ugh

    I didn't like this book much at all. Too much filler and weird religious views. Although the writing is good at times, it just isn't something I would ever want to read again.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2012

    .....

    I wonder if I'm the only person writing a review who was not given a copy for the reason of reviewing. I had to finish this book to fend off a personal feeling of giving up, but it was very dificult to do so. The author had a list of "The most obscure words in the English language" and made it a goal to use at least 10. The scripture went on for pages and pages, giving the feeling that it was filler.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2011

    Disappointed

    Amy is a 30 year old single aspiring to be a writer. She did her graduate studies at the school she is now an associate professor at. When she got done with her graduate work the school affered her a position and she took it. All she wants to do with her life though is write. Since the time she has been a little girl thats all she has ever wanted to do. Amy's life isn't what she wants and there is nothing that inspires her to write. Until after one of her students shares a personal tradgedy, her rommate losses her mother to cancer, and Amy looses a love interest is she able to write a short story. It took the whole book to get to this point and I am not sure it was worth it. I didn't enjoy the sandness of the book but this is my own personal opinion.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 21, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    not what I expected

    First of all I have to say, thank you to Bethany House for providing this book for review. Now on to the book, it was the first book I have read by Bethany Pierce, and it really pushed the envelope for Christian fiction. The author wrote alot about mature matters, and was rather obsessive about body parts, in my view. Not what I expect when I read Christian fiction.

    The story line was interesting, but often hard to follow with examples of the fictional character's writing. Ms. Pierce did portray the true friendship between Amy and her roomate Zoe, and you felt the anguish of the loss of Zoe's mother. The friendship between the roomates was beautifully portrayed and you felt they were very real with each other, a true friendship, like you and I experience in our own lives. The need to fall in love and the need to be recognized for our accomplishments is something we all face, just as Amy Gallagher does in this story.

    While it was the first story I have read by this author, and even though this story was not one I favored, I will read her again. There is a group discussion at the end of the book. 318 pages 3 stars. $14.99

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  • Posted January 25, 2011

    Was not impressed

    Once I start a book my goal is to inevitably finish it. Whether or not I like it doesn't matter. In forcing myself to read an entire book cover to cover I am enabled to give an honest review instead of tossing it aside and limiting my ability to review it. I get the complete story. With Amy Inspired, I definitely felt like giving up. I feel satisfied with my completion though, experiencing my own little triumph. However, I did not enjoy this book at all. The chapters were too long. The entire book cut into three parts gave off a sporadic vibe. Amy Gallagher, just a nagging woman who feels sorry for herself. Tell me something I don't know! I want to be Wowed and this book did not do it for me. And I got to say, I would not recommend it to a friend. However, the one thing I did like was the description of Eli's sculpture. I could see it so vivid in my mind.

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  • Posted January 24, 2011

    Okay Read

    Amy Inspired is a contemporary fiction novel, written by Bethany Pierce. The main character in the story, Amy, is on the search for who the "real Amy" is. She is an inspiring writer who has piled up the rejection letters. She is looking for a man who she can fall in love with, and feels like the rejections are piling up there too. It seems as though life all around her is moving forward and she is stuck. No movement at all.

    This book features witty and charming characters, such as Amy's roommate Zoe. A mysterious, yet unavailable, Eli and a coworker named Everett. However, even with the fun cast of characters, the story seemed to be missing something for me. Perhaps it was too cliched (the almost 30 year old trying to find herself before her 30th birthday ). And the ending left me hoping for more. I would have liked it to be a more definitive ending. Where did Amy end up?

    This is an easy and quick read. I didn't struggle to get through it. The writing was done well and it was only when I got to the end of the book and reflected on it that I felt it was a bit to cliche and lacked an ending. It would be a perfect book for when you are looking for a quick read or a book you can get lost in (but be able to put down to make supper!).

    This book is published by Bethany House. This is Pierce's debut novel, and I expect to see more of her in the future.

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  • Posted January 11, 2011

    Christian novel with identity crisis

    Amy Inspired by Bethany Pierce is a quirky debut novel. Amy Gallagher has long desired to be a writer, but she has settled for teaching courses at a college and trying to write in her spare time. Her roommate Zoe has no trouble with writer's block, and Amy admires her faith in God and insistence in living life on her terms. When Zoe allows a friend, Eli a struggling artist, to move in to their apartment until he can find a job. Amy tries to fight her attraction to Eli because of his girlfriend, but also because he represents everything she hates in men: he's tattooed, scruffy, has long hair, and doesn't have a job. Meanwhile, her writing and her life have something in common: both are going nowhere. Pierce's writing is nearly impossible to define or describe. Amy's character is very real; she knows what she wants but has absolutely no idea how to get there, and she feels like something is missing from her life. Zoe is a crunchy Christian who eats vegan, recycles, and takes care of those around her, whether they want her help or not, but she's hiding the terrible pain and fear of losing her mother to breast cancer. The two best friends fight each other and God as they try to figure out what it really means to be a Christian. Pierce has done a remarkable job accurately rendering the state of Gen X Christians, but the book is hard to qualify as a romance, drama, or chick lit. It has aspects of each, but they are a bit muddled. The story is worth the read however to watch Amy travel from completely lost to Amy Inspired

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  • Posted January 9, 2011

    Not one of my Favorites...

    Amy Inspired, as it says above...Was not one of my Favorites. I thought it was kind of slow, and I didn't think it lived up to my expectations. But I would still recomend you reading it!


    I received this book from Bethany House Publishers, and was told to give my own opinion, weither it be negative or positive.

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  • Posted January 6, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A Novel from an Author's Point of View

    With rejections piling up, she could use just a little INSPIRATION...

    Amy Inspired could almost be described as a coming of age novel except the main character is 30 years old. Amy Gallagher is a 30-year-old College Professor who teaches Freshman English and Creative Writing at a small college in Ohio to support herself while she pursues her real passion, writing. With an eccentric roommate, off-the-wall professor friends, and a love-sick freshman surrounding Miss Gallagher the story will make you smile and at times just shake your head.

    Amy is forced to examine her past to see how it affects her present circumstances and future decisions. She learns that maturing means adding experiences not changing who you are. Bethany Pierce does a wonderful job of weaving this story. It took me a couple of chapters to actually get into the story, but give yourself some time and let the characters come alive. After reading the author's notes at the end, I wonder how much of this story is actually autobiographical.

    All in all, this was a good solid book with good characters.

    This book was provided for review by Bethany House Publishers.

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  • Posted January 2, 2011

    An aspiring writer, quirky friends, and an odd but loving family

    COVER: LOVE!<br> Amy is a 29-year-old aspiring writer currently working as a visiting faculty professor in Copenhagen, Ohio. She has an eccentric roommate, also an aspiring writer, named Zoe, a jittery assistant named Everett, a fundamentalist mother, and a younger brother, Brian, who is preparing to get married to his Indian girlfriend Marie.<br> Adam, Amy's boyfriend, is a newly published novelist who also teaches at the university. He is also an atheist, and their views and morality differ greatly.<br> When artsy Zoe's friend Eli, who ran a gallery that recently closed, needs a place to stay, Amy is under the impression that it's only for the holiday weekend, and tells Zoe that it's OK, even though she wonders what her mom would think of a man living under the same roof with her. Eli's girlfriend, Jillian, is a student at the university who is currently away in Germany studying painting, and their relationship continues through telephone conversations.<br> I liked reading about Amy and her family and friends. There are moments with tongue-in-cheek humor and moments where I simply laughed out loud. There is also a deeper subtext of friendship and family. Zoe's mother is battling cancer, and her boyfriend, Michael, seems as though he might want to put the moves on Amy. This is Christian fiction, but not in a preachy sense; I think that it works well for mainstream fiction as well, especially for lovers of character-driven novels.<br> QUOTES<br> Studying my reflection, I knew I wasn't miraculously gong to be anything at thirty that I hadn't struggled to become in my twenties. In other words, I was off to a very bad start.<br> "Love in the Time of Cholera," he read. "That's like titling a book, "Love in the Face of Massive Diarrhea." His tastes had never been literary.<br> "Amy Gallagher, you are the most interesting woman I have ever had the misfortune of living wtih>" "What about 'you're beautiful',", I said. "Or 'I'm deeply attracted to your intelligence'."<br>

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  • Posted December 31, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    It's a keeper!

    Amy Gallagher is approaching 30 years of age - the time of life when she expected to have a decent start on a chosen career, a spouse, and possibly children. Amy has none of those things. She's an aspiring author who works as an adjunct professor. Her writing has hit a slump and the publishers' rejection letters are steadily increasing. Adding insult to injury, her roommate, Zoe, has managed to have some publishing success. When Eli, boyfriend of one of Zoe's prior roommates, moves in temporarily, things become even more complicated for Amy. Eli is attractive, but definitely unavailable. When tragedy occurs, Amy must examine her life, her dreams, and her faith.

    Amy Inspired is more fiction than romance, but still fun to read. I appreciated the engaging and witty tone that the author gave to the narrator. The characters were wonderfully unique and authentic. What stood out to me most about this book was the honest perspective it gave on writing. Some writers (like Zoe) have a flow of creativity and can write constantly. Other writers (like Amy) take longer because they need some sort of inspiration. As someone who loves to read, but only writes when inspired, I could identify with the characters' experiences and passions.

    I should warn that there is some ambiguity regarding the moral message of this book. Supposedly, it is targeted for the Christian market. While various characters express their perspectives on situations, there doesn't appear to be a particular message that the author is trying to convey. Only the author knows whether this is intentional or not. Perhaps it is intended to make the reader think? Or perhaps it is simply that the author doesn't want to offend anyone. As someone who comes from a conservative viewpoint, I was still able to enjoy the book and I will keep it for my permanent library.

    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers as part of their Blogger Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  • Posted December 30, 2010

    AN INSPIRATIONAL CONTEMPORARY FICTION!

    AMY INSPIRED by Bethany Pierce is an inspirational contemporary fiction set in modern day America. It is well written with details and depth. It has faith, love, aspirations for life, courage, grief, struggles, relationships, tragedy, poor decisions,secrets, looking for love and fulfillment in life. The characters are easy to follow and fall in love with. This is the story of Amy, who wants to become an author, her trials and struggles to become a published author and find happiness and fulfillment in life. If you enjoy a story of struggles and finding true fulfillment of your faith, friends and life in general you will enjoy this one. This book was received for review from the publisher and details can be found at Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group and My Book Addiction and More.

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  • Posted December 30, 2010

    Amy Inspired didn't Inspire Me!

    Amy Inspired by Bethany Pierce I have to say that it's rare that I find a book that I don't care to finish reading the end, but this is one of those books. I put it down for a few weeks and forced myself to finish it. I thought that I would be able to relate to the main character, Amy, whom is an aspiring writer who has tried repeatedly to get her work published only to see everyone around her achieving their dreams. She has recently come out of a relationship and finds herself full of doubts about anything in her life. She shares a place with her friend whom invites a stranger, a man named Eli, to live with them for a short time which turns out to be longer. Amy finds that she has an attraction to Eli. The writer, Bethany Pierce, is apparently a very educated woman with the large words that she uses. However, the words don't flow very well and I found myself getting lost and losing interest in the book almost immediately upon starting it. The book is also considered a Christian book, which I had trouble getting the connection also. Yes, there were references to Christianity yet the characters didn't seem fit the Christian profile that I was expecting. I was very disappointed in reading this book. I don't really recommend it as a good read. Thank you to Bethany House Publishers for providing this book to me free of charge because I would have been upset had I actually went out and bought it. This book was provided to me by Bethany House Publishers free of charge for review purposes. The opinions are my own and were not influenced.

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  • Posted December 26, 2010

    Disappointed

    Amy Inspired by Bethany Pierce, copyright 2010, published by Bethany House, is 26 chapters and 315 pages of fiction best classified as literary rather than Christian in my humble opinion. While there are references to religion, the main point made is about Amy's blessing her meals in public, but not in private in order to "look like" a good Christian. She claims she does it to be a good Christian.

    This novel did not capture my heart as most Christian fiction I read, and it is not one I will remember after closing the book. The characters won't stay with me and provoke my thinking. The book starts slowly, and I wasn't into it even by Chapter 6. If you like literary fiction, you will probably like it. If you're a reader of Christian fiction, it may leave you a bit disappointed as it did me. The book is labeled Christian fiction, contemporary fiction. The main theme is one of rejection illustrated by a writer receiving rejection after rejection and a woman being rejected by men. My favorite part of the novel was the ending when Amy finds the courage to follow her dreams, but this isn't a book I'd call a page turner. I had to force myself to keep reading, and it took much too long to interest me, let alone hook me. Perhaps, it's the style of the novel, and it's just not my cup of tea, but it may be yours. This is the author's second novel, and I haven't read her first. Thanks to Bethany House for providing me with the review copy and not obligating me to write a positive review. These are my opinons.

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