A Broken Kind of Beautiful

A Broken Kind of Beautiful

by Katie Ganshert


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A Broken Kind of Beautiful by Katie Ganshert

Sometimes everything you ever learned about yourself is wrong
Fashion is a fickle industry, a frightening fact for twenty-four year old model Ivy Clark. Ten years in and she’s learned a sacred truth—appearance is everything. Nobody cares about her broken past as long as she looks beautiful for the camera. This is the only life Ivy knows—so when it starts to unravel, she’ll do anything to hold on. Even if that means moving to the quaint island town of Greenbrier, South Carolina, to be the new face of her stepmother’s bridal wear line—an irony too rich for words, since Ivy is far from the pure bride in white. 
If only her tenuous future didn’t rest in the hands of Davis Knight, her mysterious new photographer. Not only did he walk away from the kind of success Ivy longs for to work maintenance at a local church, he treats her differently than any man ever has. Somehow, Davis sees through the façade she works so hard to maintain. He, along with a cast of other characters, challenges everything Ivy has come to believe about beauty and worth. Is it possible that God sees her—a woman stained and broken by the world—yet wants her still?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781601425904
Publisher: The Crown Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/15/2014
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 417,196
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Christy Award finalist, Katie Ganshert is the author of Wildflowers from Winter and Wishing on Willows. She lives in Iowa with her handsome husband, their dinosaur-loving son, and their goofy black lab, Bubba. When she’s not busy writing or playing or reading or snuggling, she is obsessing over the paperwork and the waiting that comes with adoption, which she and her husband hope to complete sometime before they are fifty.

Read an Excerpt

The girl with the haunted eyes reentered his life on the other side of a lowering casket, humidity and the shrill song of cicadas tangling together in the South Carolina heat. Aunt Marilyn pressed trembling fingers against her lips and swayed as if the wet ground had risen up and pitched her forward. Davis Knight tightened his grip beneath his aunt’s elbow and looked away from her pain. That’s when he saw her—standing like a statue, her waif-like form shrouded in grief.

Ivy Clark. All grown up.

A distant rumble of thunder rolled across the blackened sky, leftover remnants from a tropical storm. A raindrop brushed his ear; another grazed the tip of his nose. Pastor Voss bowed his head. So did everyone else, including Ivy. A slight breeze ruffled wisps of hair around her downturned face and fluttered the butterfly sleeves of her dress. The last time he’d seen her in the flesh, he had just returned to Greenbrier for a short summer stint after completing his freshman year at NYU. Ivy had been twelve going on fifty. Tall and gangly with eyes too large for her face—twin souls the color of honey, staring and deep as if she saw and understood every sadness in the world.

Then she had disappeared, and so did he, in a way. A few years later he began following her career because it was in his interest to follow it, but even with all professional motives stripped bare, he would have followed it anyway.

Pinpricks of sweat beaded along Davis’s temples. His sister, Sara, wrapped her arm around his and squeezed. Pastor Voss’s prayer ended in time for Ivy Clark to look up and catch him staring. Familiar territory to her, no doubt, given her career. Not so familiar to him.

He would have looked away, but her awareness of his attention triggered an intriguing metamorphosis. It seemed her eyes had learned some tricks over the years. Like how to bat in just the right way. How to dance in invitation. How to swallow the grief that had wrapped around her shoulders moments ago, when she thought nobody watched. She smiled a smile Davis knew well, one he’d seen hundreds of times on a hundred beautiful faces—the type of smile that had lost its allure two years ago.

He glanced down at the grass—thick green blades framing his black loafers—and patted his sister’s hand, his own personal reminder of why a woman like Ivy Clark could not be a part of his life. Ivy belonged to a world that took and took and took so subtly and connivingly that a person didn’t notice until there was nothing left to give. It was a world he never wanted to be a part of again.

Still, he looked one more time. Ivy stared back, a smirk on her face.

“Now’s not the time to talk about this, Ivy.” Bruce strode through the long grass toward a line of cars parked along the brick path, texting a message into his phone.

The drops of rain turned into a mist that settled over Ivy’s arms, cooling her skin. If only the drizzle could quench her fear. Who was he texting? She lengthened her stride, trailing him like a long evening shadow. “You’re the one doing business.”

“How do you know it’s business?” He dug into his pocket, pulled out his keys, and clicked the button on the remote to unlock the car doors. Two short beeps interrupted a chorus of chirping birds hiding somewhere in the Spanish moss that dripped from gnarled tree limbs overhead.

Ivy rolled her eyes. Only Bruce would lock his car inside a cemetery in Greenbrier, South Carolina. “This isn’t New York City.” The two places existed on opposite poles. “I don’t think any burglars are prowling around waiting to break into your car.”

He stopped in front of the black Lexus with rental plates.

She stopped too. “I need to know, Bruce. It’s my future we’re talking about here.”

“If you were so concerned, you should have kept your mouth shut.”

“I made one lousy suggestion. You’re telling me O’Banion’s getting bent out of shape because of one small—”

“It’s not your job to make suggestions, especially not to a photographer like Miles O’Banion.”

Ivy’s stomach knotted. What would happen if that one slip cost her two years of security? Her twenty-fifth birthday crept closer each day. As hard as she tried, she wasn’t getting any younger and people were starting to notice. If she wanted to continue modeling, she needed that contract. Bruce ran his hand down his face. “It’s your job to keep your mouth closed and work for the camera. That’s what you get paid for. Nobody cares about your opinions.”

“So I’ve been told.”

“Then why didn’t you listen?”

A small group of women dressed in black stopped conversing. Bruce painted on a smile and gave them a polite wave. He leaned close to Ivy and spoke from the corner of his mouth, his smile unwavering. “We’re not talking about this here. Let’s show a little respect.”

Her muscles coiled. Respect? James didn’t deserve her respect. She didn’t care how touching the eulogy, how beautiful the flowers, or how crowded the funeral. Why should she care about losing a man who never wanted her in the first place? Why should his unspoken I love you echo in her mind? She refused to pretend her father’s death had any bearing on her life. Because it didn’t. She wouldn’t let it. She gathered her mounting anger and stuffed it in the empty place inside her chest.

Bruce opened the passenger-side door. “Get in the car.”

She folded her arms. “If you know something, as my agent, you have no right to keep it from me.”

“I don’t know anything. And when I find out, we can discuss it back in New York.”

“Why did Annalise tell me I lost the contract?”

“Because Annalise feeds off gossip, or haven’t you figured that out yet?”

Despite the stagnant heat, a chill crept across Ivy’s skin. As her friend, Annalise wouldn’t have pulled this out of thin air. It had to have some substance. She gripped her elbows, as if the harder her fingers dug into flesh, the less any of this would matter. “Gossip always starts with a seed of truth.”

“Look, either get in the car or I’m leaving you here. Your choice.”

Ivy looked over her shoulder at the rows of polished tombstones. Her throat tightened. She hugged her arms and stepped closer to the car. “I want to go to the airport.”

“We’re going to the luncheon.”


“He was my brother and your father. We’re not leaving now.”

“He was hardly my father.” The emptiness expanded, carving her out like a pumpkin-turned-jack-o-lantern. She was nothing but a shell. A beautiful, empty shell.

An SUV pulled out from behind them. An engine rumbled in front. Except for a few stragglers in the distance lingering over her father’s grave, the cemetery cleared.

Bruce drummed his fingers on the top of the car.

“I’m not going to sit in that house, eat cucumber sandwiches, and pretend to care that he’s gone.”

“You don’t have a choice.” Bruce opened the door wider.

Her shoulders sagged. Ivy slid into the passenger side, pulled the seat belt across her body, snapped it into place, and stared straight ahead. Why had she said anything to O’Banion? So what if he wanted to keep her in the same overdone pose? She shouldn’t have said a word. If there was one mistake to avoid in her world, it was wounding the pride of a notoriously prideful photographer.

Bruce’s door opened. He got inside and set his phone in the cup holder. As soon as he started the ignition, the phone vibrated, rattling loose change in the console. He swept up the device and held it against his ear. “Bruce Olsen.”

Nothing but the unintelligible chatter of a female voice from the other end.

A muscle pulsed in Bruce’s jaw. He scratched his chin and looked out the window, hiding his expression. “I’ll be back tomorrow. Could we meet then and talk this over?” He clicked his seat belt into place and nodded. Another long pause. More unintelligible chatter. A sigh from her uncle. “I understand. Thanks for getting back to me.”

He hit the End button and started the car.

Ivy pressed her fingers against her sweat-dampened palms.

Bruce pulled out onto the brick street and steered toward the iron gate. “It seems Ms. Reynolds wants a fresh face for her cosmetic line.” He flipped on the radio. Bon Jovi’s “You Give Love a Bad Name” blasted Ivy’s ears. “Sorry, kid. They’re not renewing your contract.”

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A Broken Kind of Beautiful: A Novel 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 32 reviews.
AlisBooksAF More than 1 year ago
Wow. I am feeling so uplifted right now. This book has left me feeling completely gushy and warm! I don’t think the title could have been more perfect. Ivy is the main focus of the story. She’s broken. As it turns out, she’s not the only broken person in the story, though. Davis and his sister Sara are both struggling with issues of their own. Then there’s Marilyn who steadily has to deal with discouragement. This book is full of raw honesty and wisdom. It’s a book I think anyone can relate to. While the characters may have held some lofty positions and their circumstances may not be ones we’d ever find ourselves in, the main issues are ones we can all find ourselves struggling with: fear, loneliness, rejection, lust, GUILT. This is a story of redemption. Ivy may be a fasion model with problems I’ve never seen the likes of, but I could still completely relate to her emotions. Davis. What an amazing man of God. He constantly pushes aside the flesh in order to put God’s will first. He’s the kind of caring and self-sacrificing man most single women long for. But he’s punishing himself. I loved listening to the pastor impart his wisdom. He’s a listener, and he knows how to gently guide Davis in the right direction. As far as the writing itself, the story had a nice smooth pace throughout, and Ms. Ganshert really knows how to grab the reader. There are some quotes that just really hit you. I found myself saying, “Ouch,” more than once. It had me questioning if there were areas in my own life where I was trying to play God. It’s a beautifully written story that I recommend to everyone, especially those of you looking for a Christian romance that is so much more than just a romance. *I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the storyline and the way private thoughts were brought to life.
book4children More than 1 year ago
This is an interesting story. It's about Ivy Clark, a young woman that has been a model for the past 10 years. Her career is evaporating, and she's desperately hanging on. She takes what might be her last chance at solidifying herself in the industry by modeling for a bridal boutique owned by her late father's wife. Ivy is the product of an affair her father had. Marilyn is his wife, and in spite of everything, loves Ivy to pieces. Davis is a former fashion photographer and will be taking Ivy's pictures for the boutique. He is Marilyn's nephew, so he isn't related to Ivy, but the almost-cousin aspect was still weird to me. There are a lot of characters with a lot of back story. Everyone has a history and they are all hurting in some way, although none of them are as damaged as Ivy. I enjoyed Ivy's journey of self-discovery. I wish it had been more gradual, with more evidence that she was changing along the way. She was hurt and bitter for the majority of the book, and it wasn't until the last 50 pages or so that we see any vast improvement. Even then, it was mostly summarized in a few sentences. In that regard, I didn't feel like I got enough of Ivy's transformation. I wanted a more gradual change as the story went along. It was the same with Davis. He stayed in the same spot emotionally until the very end when he realized that he could change his situation without falling into old traps. Otherwise, I really liked the book. The characters are flawed and believable. They all have trials to work through and challenges to overcome. Religion plays a big part in the book. Ivy has to discover that she matters to God and that He sees her for the person she is and not just a pretty face or a great pair of legs. It's well written and engaging. Fans of Christian fiction and romance will enjoy this book. It's definitely worth the read. Content: Clean, but there is some drinking (by adults) and a small bit of violence. Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
thedeena63 More than 1 year ago
Katie Ganshert is more than an author. She is an artist; her words are her palette and her quill (or keyboard--less romantic) is her brush. She doesn't write novels; she creates masterpieces with her gifting from God Himself. At least, that's what she did in "A Broken Kind of Beautiful." Because, in some small way (or big way), we are all Ivy: searching for the one who will love us unconditionally, just because we are ourselves. And finding it through any means necessary, especially the more lies we believe about ourselves. And we are all Davis, paying penance for sins too big for God to forgive and too heavy for us to truly carry. Problem is, our sacrifices are never enough...only Jesus will do. But how long will we carry our sins until we allow Him to nail them to His cross? We are all Marilyn. Willing to offer that unconditional love and forgiveness, but constantly met by walls of resistance. Willing to suffer wound after wound, but only because the Father says to us 'never give up'. Finally, we are all Sara, cursing the affliction that won't leave us anything but different, imperfect, flawed....until we surrender and see the blessing amid the pain. Then we realize that what may have been meant for harm was actual meant for our good, and even our best. That's what you'll find in the pages of "A Broken Kind of Beautiful". My only quibble was the rushed epilogue. After investing so much time with these people, I felt as a reader I deserved a bit more than half a page on how it all turned out. My thanks to my friends at Waterbrook Press for printing Katie's masterpiece, and my gratitude to my husband for buying me a copy when I said "I have to read this book!" You can find your copy in bookstores and online everywhere books are sold!
Kellie4 More than 1 year ago
Katie Ganshert, author of A Broken Kind of Beautiful, has struck again with yet another wonderful read. I have read two of her books previously, and I absolutely love the way she writes, the way she develops her characters and her plot.  Ivy Clark is a model who has a past, a relatively deep, dark, and difficult one. Davis Knight, an old friend, has hidden from his camera for two years after an incident occurred with his sister, Sarah.  Ivy has a difficult time getting modeling gigs. However, her aunt, Marilyn wants her as a model for her bridal store, Something New. She brings Ivy to Greenbriar for the photo shoot, and Ivy learns a little bit more about who she is and where she came from. She also learns, most importantly that she is a child of God, and that while she thought no one else loved her, she has always been loved by the One True Lover of all His children.  A beautiful story of hope, love, redemption, and finding yourself as God's child. 
HPedersen More than 1 year ago
I loved this no-nonsense book that hits on tough topics, integrates romance, and a quietly relays a passion for God. Key ingredients for a captivating and lovely read. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for both an engaging, and enjoyable read. 
MyBookAddictionandMore More than 1 year ago
A BROKEN KIND OF BEAUTIFUL by Katie Ganshert is a beautiful Christian fiction set in Greenbrier, South Carolina. Thought-provoking and poignant tale of cover girl Ivy Clark, her hurts, and triumphs. Beauty can be found in many ways and avenues, not just in looks, for looks fades with time. Ivy faces many challenges. With the help of her new photographer, Davis Knight, she learns that God sees her, not her beauty but her heart. Filled with anguish,hurt, pain, triumph, faith, healing, and finding inner beauty and worth. A must read especially for young adults who are dealing with self image. Ms. Ganshert has brought readers a story that is more than just about beauty, she has shown readers the meaning of beauty and God's love for us all. A beautiful but painful tale! Received for an honest review. Rating: 4 Heat Rating: Sweet Reviewed by: AprilR, Courtesy of My Book Addiction and More
girlsmama More than 1 year ago
Ok, I’ll admit it. I’m that person that …occasionally…..runs a little late.  When arriving at parties it’s socially acceptable to be “fashionable late”, which I often am. However sometimes you might miss the best part of the party if you are too late. I have to say that I’m “late” in joining the party on those who have read and enjoyed A Broken Kind of Beautiful by Katie Ganshert, and after reading this book, I feel like wow- I wish I would have read this one earlier it’s filled with great characters, an interesting storyline and so much- “wow, that’s so true” dialogue.  So now that I am fashionably late to discovering this book, it does not diminish it’s enjoyment or impact for me, this was a good one. The characters are as the book title suggest Broken and Beautiful- Ivy, an aging out supermodel - mind you she’s about to hit the old age of 25- is a heroine unlike most you find in this genre, but there is something about her that you just really care about what happens to her. Her back story is a bit heartbreaking as the novel opens and she is at her estranged father’s funeral. She is a young woman who just never quite felt loved and so with her beautiful outside she would seek it out in all the wrong places leading to relationships that meant nothing. Her walls were way up and no one ever really knew the real Ivy. In a last fitch effort to try and revive her career, her agent and uncle, get’s her a shoot with her Stepmother Marilyn who happens to own a lovely little Bridal shop in Greenbrier South Carolina called Something New, which is a far cry from her usual stomping grounds in New York City.  She is desperate though and out of work ,so off she goes to this job with her walls of armor up high and strong against anyone trying to get in.  Next, we meet Davis Knight a former up and coming fashion photographer who had all the makings of skyrocketing to the top of the fashion industry, but left  his big job in New York because of an accident to his sister that has filled him with guilt and a feeling that he should never pick up a camera again. However ,he does serve as the fashion photographer for Ivy’s shoot as the proceeds are going to go to directly help his sister with an art program for her at a local college.  He rediscovers his love for photography and his amazing talent shows through his work producing the best pictures Ivy has ever taken.   In all of this a relationship starts to brew between the two, although not in the normal way that Ivy is used to having with a man.  There are so many aspects to this novel that I absolutely loved- the power of forgiveness being one and the idea that God’s forgiveness covers it all and all guilt can be laid down right at the foot of the cross. The pacing to this novel was flawless as we see the character of Ivy develop and grow- her journey from the beginning of the book to the end was one that pulled the reader in and by the end the tears were a flowing.  I also loved the fact that the “hero” of the book had his issues to sort through as well.  In a manner of speaking, “Miss Abandoned “meets “Mr Guilt-ridden” and because of who God is in their lives, they can find the love and the forgiveness they need through God to heal.  And for those of you that are “fashionably late” like me to discovering this book- I truly hope that you will enjoy this as much as I did. This one goes on the favorites shelf and I look forward to reading more great books like this one from Katie Ganshert. 5 stars I was graciously given a complimentary copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions expressed are my own.
tiffanya94 More than 1 year ago
Wow. I do not have enough good words to say about this book. I enjoyed every single second of it. Katie Ganshert did an amazing job! This would have to be my favorite book ever! If you like Faith books with some romance and just every day real life struggles, this is a book for you! I thought the cover was absolutely stunning. It does a very good job at representing the book. The colors used in the cover are gorgeous, they’re not too bright or too low, but it grabs your attention! I think the colors represent the tone of the book in an unexplainable way. The characters in the book are very different then any other book I’ve read. I absolutely loved Davis Knight, he was such a gentleman towards Ivy. I loved and respected that he refused to treat her like all the other men treat her. Davis’s sister, Sara, had a good story, too. Even though she has a disability, she didn’t let that stop her. I loved her determination. The stepmother, Marilyn, was also a respectable character for me. Even though Ivy wasn’t her biological daughter, she loved her as if she was. I wish Ivy wouldn’t have pushed her away like she did, though. Bruce, Ivy’s agent and uncle, I didn’t care too much for. I didn’t like the way he treated his girls, but it gave the book awesome diversity. Then, there is Ivy Clark. I went on the emotional roller-coaster with her. I felt her pain, happiness, desire, and darkness. At times, I wanted to slap some sense into her and then at times I wanted to help her through her struggles. I would definitely recommend this book! I think females would like this book better than males, however, it’s an awesome read for both genders. If you haven’t read this amazing book by Katie Ganshert, you are definitely missing out!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sometimes everything you ever learned about yourself is wrong Fashion is a fickle industry, a frightening fact for twenty-four year old model Ivy Clark. Ten years in and she’s learned a sacred truth—appearance is everything. Nobody cares about her broken past as long as she looks beautiful for the camera. This is the only life Ivy knows—so when it starts to unravel, she’ll do anything to hold on. Even if that means moving to the quaint island town of Greenbrier, South Carolina, to be the new face of her stepmother’s bridal wear line—an irony too rich for words, since Ivy is far from the pure bride in white. If only her tenuous future didn’t rest in the hands of Davis Knight, her mysterious new photographer. Not only did he walk away from the kind of success Ivy longs for to work maintenance at a local church, he treats her differently than any man ever has. Somehow, Davis sees through the façade she works so hard to maintain. He, along with a cast of other characters, challenges everything Ivy has come to believe about beauty and worth. Is it possible that God sees her—a woman stained and broken by the world—yet wants her still? This book was unlike any book I have ever read. It was gritty, emotional, captivating, confronting and uplifting. When I first read the description for A Broken Kind Of Beautiful by Katie Ganshert, I was somewhat skeptical. A model in the fashion industry? Not my typical type of book. But I decided to give it a try. And I am so glad I did! I learned a lot about the fashion industry and how damaging it can be to focus only on our outward appearance. In the beginning it was a little hard to relate to Ivy because she had so many walls up! However as the story progressed it was almost painful to see the growing pain in Ivy's life! My heart broke for her in the love she so desperately sought and didn't believe she could ever have. (In so many ways I could relate to her as the book progressed and the real Ivy Clark started to emerge)! This story is definitely not a usual warm, fuzzy, feel good christian novel, it was at times gritty, heart rending and difficult to read. In fact, there were times I put off picking the book up again because I knew I was going to suffer right along with these characters. It's really, A novel that digs through all the inner pains of the heart, but yet shows how great God's love is for us! If your looking for a novel that will powerfully stir your inner emotions, then this one is the one for you! It starts out kind of slow but towards the end I couldn't put it down! I ended up finishing it within a couple hours. What I liked: Davis Knight, the warm hearted hero with an eye for true beauty. Davis' sister Sara's ability to 'see' people. The books message about true beauty. Marilyn's unconditional love even in the face of repeated rejections. The part of the book where David and Sara took Ivy crabbing. My favorite quotes: "God gave you a special eye for his beauty. You see things the rest of us don't. You captured it, and then share it with the world." "I wanted you to fight for me! Just once, I wanted somebody to fight for me. To chase after me. To not let me push them away." "This world was never meant to be comfortable. It was never meant to feel like home. It took darkness to show me the truth. One day I'll open my eyes and I'll see Jesus." "Gods not in the business of pampering his children. He's in the business of perfecting them." * I received this book for free from blogging for books for this review. Read the first chapter here More info here Authors Website
jebsweetpea More than 1 year ago
The nutshell: A famous model reluctantly returns home after her fast-paced, soul-sucking career runs dry. A photographer who wants to forget his past mistakes. An aunt/step-mom who brings them together which starts the healing process for the two wandering souls.  The pro's: What a great story! Full of redemption, whole acceptance of God's love, and understanding true friendship and forgiveness.  The con's: It took a bit to figure out who all the characters were and how they fit into the story. Some relationships took a good chunk of time to figure out, and how specific people fit with others.  Recommendation: I'd definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a book that is chalk full of redemption and how God cleans up some very messy lives. Click here for the synopsis of the book. Interested in reading chapter one? Click here. Want to learn more about the author? Go here. I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.
Kiribear13 More than 1 year ago
A Broken Kind of Beautiful by Katie Ganshert is a book that I had the honor of winning in a Goodreads giveaway. It is about a 24-year-old woman named Ivy Clark. Ivy is a high-fashion model at the tail end of a career that has lasted 10 years. The realization that she may be getting too old to be a model for much longer. The book starts out with Ivy on the outs of a lasting contract that has kept her employed. This book starts out a bit slow in setting the scene, and for about the first third of the book, I felt that it was hard to visualize the location and atmosphere in the book. I distinctly remember several times towards the beginning of the book where characters were talked about but I just couldn't picture what they look like or what the room they were in was like, aside from a generic idea. The story was still enjoyable as the storytelling is primarily around Ivy and her world falling apart around her. Luckily the rest of the book gets much more descriptive, as I like to visualize the world that the story is about. As someone who isn't usually much for Christian Fiction novels, I can admit that I probably wouldn't have gone for this book initially if I would have known that it fell into that genre. Luckily I didn't realize that because it was not detracting from the story. Katie did a wonderful job of sneaking a lot of it in without shoving it in your face. Regardless of your beliefs the underlying message is one that is useful to anyone. We should all look for forgiveness, redemption and love. Despite a slow start, the book is never not enjoyable to read. Katie does an amazing job of creating realistic characters that have realistic problems. She wrote about many difficult issues in this book and there were times where my heart just broke for some of the characters and I would have a tear or two drop from my eye. As you are reading you can really connect with the characters and feel their pain and their frustration at life and themselves. Overall I definitely enjoyed the story and the message that it brought forth, bringing us all a little deeper into fashion, photography, and what it feels like to be "broken". I definitely recommend this book and give it 4 out of 5 stars. Great job Katie Ganshert, I will definitely look into your previous novels: Wildflowers from Winter and Wishing on Willows.
sherrijinga More than 1 year ago
What a refreshing read A Broken Kind of Beautiful is! I've read Katie Ganshert's other books and have enjoyed them thoroughly, but this one was by far my favorite.  At first, I wasn't sure if I'd like this story because it's about a fashion model and I'm not really into that scene. But the book doesn't put the main emphasis on Ivy's career. It's what's going on in her heart that's the primary focus. Ivy is pretty messed up but she can't help it because she's never had anyone to pour Truth into her. She may look successful to the outside world, but this high-fashion model's life is anything but a success. Although she puts up a good front, you see through her and can't help but feel for her because she's had nothing but rejection her entire life from those who should show her love. Ivy is a very relatable character. She may be a super model, but she's quite like many young single women out there today who are trying to find their places in this world.  Davis, Ivy's new photographer, has a tangled web of self-condemnation, pride, pain and regret in his life too. Because of some things in his past, photography is the last thing he wants to do. But he's asked by his aunt, a grieving widow, to do this one job for her and he can't tell her no. I found myself, while reading this book, reminiscing on times when I've felt pressured to do something I didn't want to do…and those things later turned out to be God moments. This is what happens to Davis. He reminds me of many young guys I've encountered who don't really know how to express what's going on in their hearts and he hides behind his work to keep himself from getting hurt or taking a risk. Although there are some sparks physically between Ivy and Davis, their differences seem to make it an impossibility that anything could ever happen between them. And until the matters of their hearts are fleshed out, romance isn't a top priority anyway.  Not only was the story quite refreshing and unusual, the writing was impeccable. I was stopped in my tracks more than once by certain phrases Katie used that just were so melodic and unusual. I wanted to underline them so that anyone I loan the book to won't miss them. She has a way of describing things that makes you stop and reread the line again. I kept wondering how in the world she comes up with these phrases.  Examples: Sadness spread its fingers and lay a heavy hand over his chest. Something broken flickered in her eyes but disappeared before the lethargic shutter in his mind could capture it. Katie has done a fine job with this story. I highly recommend this book!
SeasonsofGrace More than 1 year ago
OH MY WORD!!! This book had me from page one! This is a message all young ladies need to read and hear, but not just young ladies, it is something we all need! This book contains a positive message about body image, forgiveness, grace and so much more! What does this book deal with? How about adultery and consequences of. Unconditional love because of who God is. Forgiveness for dealing with how our choices affect others and sometimes not too favorably. How do we forgive ourselves? This book is a must read!! I was blessed with this book through the Blogging for Books program in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.
Shay14 More than 1 year ago
I honestly don't even know where to begin. This book was such a fantastic book. I think Denise Hunter, author of Dancing with Fireflies, says is best: "Both beautifully written and honestly told, A Broken Kind of Beautiful is captivating! Faith is the resounding heartbeat of this poignant story, but Ganshert also breathes to life a tender romantic tale and a powerful inner journey as soothing as sweet tea on a hot summer day." I think every girls of every age should read this book as Ganshert challenges the worlds idea of what is beautiful in a gripping and powerful way. Ivy Clark is a model. That's all she's known since she was 14. Now that her career is lagging, she is lost. She doesn't know what to do with her life anymore because she believes what she's been told for years - you won't amount to more than being a beautiful face and gorgeous body. Davis Knight has a gift. He sees things that others miss. God has given him the ability to see, through the lense of a camera, the beauty that people take for granted. The only problem is, he hasn't picked up a camera in two years. When his path and Ivy's cross, they both begin a journey to God's healing grace and mercy. Davis feels drawn to Ivy because of her brokenness. There are times I wanted to strangle Ivy for her attitude and actions, but I couldn't. I've been broken before, I know what that's like. I wanted for Ivy what Davis and Sara and Marylin wanted for her, which kept me rooting for her the entire book. The author did a great job of weaving in the message of the book: "Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are mine" - Isaiah 43:1. For someone who has been broken by the world, this story was poignant and well written. Everyone can benefit from the message that the author is trying to get across. Beauty is not what's on the outside. It's what's inside that makes us beautiful. Overall, I can't say enough great things about this story, and my review really doesn't do it justice. I just can't put into words how great this story is. Go pick up your copy today! **I received a complimentary ARC of this book from the publisher, through the Blogging for Books program, in exchange for my honest review which I have given.**
Nutz2read More than 1 year ago
Another amazing book from Katie Ganshert! This was such a wonderful book that I’m not sure where to start! The storyline had me intrigued from the start. I’d never read a book where the heroine is a model. It’s obvious Katie put a lot of work into researching modeling and the men and women who do it. She shines a light on an aspect of the industry that I’m sure most people don’t consider. I loved the descriptions and dialogue! Katie really brought the story and setting to life. She made it seem as though I was actually there, watching everything that was going on, eavesdropping on the characters‘ conversations, peering over someone‘s shoulder as I saw the narrative unfold. The characters were so real, which made it hard for me to turn the last page. They felt like friends and I didn’t want them to “go.” Thankfully, when it comes to books, I can “visit” them and read their story again and again. Ivy Clark is the heroine. She has spent the last 10 years as a model and as a result finds her self worth in her appearance, so when her career comes to a screeching halt, she has nothing left. To be honest, she isn’t a very likeable character when we first meet her. She is pretty snarky, nasty, and rude at times, but it’s mostly a front. She definitely isn’t your typical contemporary Christian romance heroine. She is all sharp edges with a sharper tongue. It was hard for me to like her sometimes, but I fell in love with her quickly. She is so broken and hurting that I couldn’t not care about her. She has been told that she is nothing more than a pretty face and an empty shell, and she believes it. She’s one of those characters that you just want to cry for, because she is so lost and truly believes that no one loves her. Davis was an interesting hero. He is also broken, but he has found his way back to God. He used to be a photographer, but quit suddenly 2 years before, for reasons unknown except to those closest to him. I really liked Davis. He wasn’t one of those annoying guys that the authors portray as having it all together. He was just as flawed as Ivy, just in a different way. He is sweet, caring, and feels responsible for everyone (his “fatal“ flaw). I enjoyed reading from his perspective, which gives us new insight into Ivy and her personality. Davis confuses Ivy to no end, because he doesn’t act like the men she has known. He treats her with respect and doesn’t get caught on her beauty, but looks deeper. He is sure that there is more to her than the façade she wears like a second skin. I also loved what some call the “secondary characters” though neither of them were secondary in this story. Marilyn plays a huge part in it and I just adored her. There is also Sara, Davis’ sister, who also has a large role. They are both well rounded and the story wouldn’t have been the same without them. Katie used them to push Ivy and Davis out of their comfort zones and to share some important truths both with the characters and the readers. The spiritual themes of A Broken Kind of Beautiful are forgiveness and redemption. Davis has been punishing himself for 2 years, feeling guilty for an accident that he sees as his fault. He is sure that God wants him to give up his dream, because he sees it as part of what caused the accident. One of my favorite quotes directed at him is, “It doesn’t matter if I forgive you. It doesn’t even matter if you forgive you. What matters, Davis, is that God already has. So stop wearing your past like a pair of handcuffs.” Davis had to learn to accept the forgiveness he so needed in order to move on. The theme verse for this book is Isaiah 43:1, “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name. you are mine.” I am probably always going to see this as Ivy’s verse now. As I already mentioned, Ivy doesn’t believe anyone loves her, so she doesn’t see how God could possibly want her, how He could call her His. Another of my favorite quotes, this one for Ivy. “I’m glad God doesn’t plunk Himself into the water and wait for us to find Him. I’m glad He chases us like that butterfly.” Ivy hadn’t had anyone care enough to chase after her, but that’s what God does. He constantly pursues us. I loved it when she finally understands that and accepts His love. Katie’s books always touch my heart and challenge my faith, and this one is no exception. It is wonderfully written, compelling, and real. I highly recommend this book to everyone. (Note: all quotes were used with permission from the author.)
gccbookworm More than 1 year ago
This was my first time reading Katie Ganshert so I wasn't sure what to expect. Well, I have put her on my to-read author list. Thoroughly enjoyed reading her book <i>A Broken Kind of Beautiful</i> -so much so I had a hard time putting it down. Ganshert develops her characters to the point I feel they are living and breathing in the same room I am in. The audience is introduced to Ivy Clark at the funeral of her father. She's only 24 but lived a life time as a model for the fashion industry. But things may be changing, she is about to lose her job. Then she is invited to spend some time with her step-mother working at her bridal boutique and helping with a bridal fashion show. Inter-woven throughout is the story of Davis Knight, janitor at the local church, who once was a professional photographer. Can Ivy revive Davis's desire to be a photographer again and gain herself a lucrative job modeling? What secret is Davis keeping buried? Or will they both discover something more important? A story of redemption and God's unfailing love. Pick up the book and take the journey. You won't regret it.
Writer4God More than 1 year ago
Fashion is a fickle industry, a frightening fact for twenty-four-year-old model Ivy Clark. Ten years in and she's learned a sacred truth---appearance is everything. Nobody cares about her broken past as long as she looks beautiful for the camera. This is the only life Ivy knows---so when it starts to unravel, she'll do anything to hold on. Even if that means moving to the quaint island town of Greenbrier, South Carolina, to be the new face of her stepmother's bridal wear line---an irony too rich for words, since Ivy is far from the pure bride in white. If only her tenuous future didn't rest in the hands of Davis Knight, her mysterious photographer. Not only did he walk away from the kind of success Ivy longs for to work maintenance at a local church, he treats her differently than any man ever has. Somehow, Davis sees through the facade she works so hard to maintain. In fact, it seems that everyone Ivy comes across in Greenbrier challenges what she has come to believe about beauty and worth. Is it possible that God sees her---a woman stained and broken by the world---yet wants her still? This book is beautifully written. I must admit I'm a little envious of Katie's writing style. She adds just enough detail to give you a feel for the surroundings without being too wordy. I loved the book at first because of this, but after a while I guess I just grew kind of bored with the story. It's a bit cliche and predictable and a little unrealistic. At one part someone drops a snow globe on CARPETED floor and it shatters... and at another part a guy hit a girl in the cheek with a beer bottle and the bottle shattered and cut her face... uh... I'm pretty sure her cheek bone would break before the bottle would! The glass in glass bottles is pretty thick! Stuff like that REALLY bugs me in books... but anyway, other than those things it was an interesting story and Ivy wasn't your typical heroine for these types of books so I guess that was nice. Although her character kind of annoyed me. I suppose it's sort of cut down the middle. It had good stuff and not so good stuff. But I'll give it 4 out of 5 because of the writing style and the story was interesting at some parts. I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for this honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
&ldquo;A Broken Kind of Beautiful&rdquo; by Katie Ganshert, was by far one of the most beautiful books I&rsquo;ve read in awhile. There were so many themes, characters, stories woven together, that the piece reached a level of depth that (in my humble opinion) many contemporary Christian novels fail to reach. I appreciated that while there were elements of love and friendship, the focus of the story was more on the brokenness of beauty and how God can create an entirely different sort of beauty out of ashes. Most of the characters resonated with me or were realistic, believable, tangible. I truly related to Ivy&rsquo;s story, as God has allowed circumstances to &ldquo;scar&rdquo; what I consider some of my external beauty so that I might continually focus on seeking an internal kind. I loved Ivy&rsquo;s stepmother, Marilyn, as well. Her heartbreak and struggle felt so real to me as she lived out a calling from God that felt completely opposite of what she, in her flesh, desired. Not only did she endure remaining married to a man who was unfaithful, but allowed God to place the product of that unfaithfulness &mdash; Ivy &mdash; deeply on her heart. Marilyn was barren, but God gave her a child in the most convoluted way; and that love, constant and Christlike, came to save Ivy&rsquo;s life. Therefore, I appreciated that Ganshert allowed us to see Marilyn&rsquo;s hopes of having a true relationship with Ivy dashed many times, and yet we still saw her perseverant love never give up on that relationship. I wanted to rejoice when Ivy finally recognized that she had been loved all along, by the person who made the least amount of sense. And that if Marilyn could love her, despite what she symbolized, maybe God could, too. One character that I had a hard time relating to (and even sometimes disliked) was Davis, the &ldquo;leading&rdquo; man. Just as Ivy called him out for it, I was disgusted by his attitude. I didn&rsquo;t like how deeply he played the victim/martyr in his own life, essentially ignoring Christ&rsquo;s forgiveness. And more than that, when he had such a huge example of his sin &mdash; causing his sister, Sarah&rsquo;s, blindness &mdash; he didn&rsquo;t learn from it. I didn&rsquo;t like that he wanted to have integrity and be a witness to Ivy, but was moody and pensive and had none of the joy of Christ in his heart. As a result of that, he felt hypocritical to me, and I disliked him for that. But, my reaction could say more about my expectations of a leading man than the believability of Davis&rsquo; character, as I know many Christians (including myself from time to time) who live as though the forgiveness they&rsquo;ve been given isn&rsquo;t life changing. Maybe that is really at the core of why I dsliked his character &mdash; I saw my own fallenness in him. All in all, I thought the book was well-written, engaging, and beautiful in its simplicity. The story of a girl lost and alone in the world without God who comes to understand the redeeming power of the gospel is always something worth my time. I was impressed by Ganshert&rsquo;s style, and would love to read more of her books. I highly encourage the reading of this well-done, heart-wrenching novel. I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.
inspiremichelle More than 1 year ago
Broken Kind of Beautiful by Katie Ganshert Ivy Clark has been a model from the young age of fourteen. She was raised to believe her looks are everything because that is how she has found her value. Her hurts run deep, from abandonment, to being used, and feelings of unworthiness. She was beautiful but empty. The closer Ivy got to being twenty five the less jobs she received. Having no where else to turn she takes a modeling job in Greenbrier, South Carolina, for her stepmother&rsquo;s bridal shop Something New. Ivy does not believe she could ever be worthy of the white bridal gown, picket fence, happy ever after. She thinks she is to damaged. Davis Knight is now the church handyman and a photographer at heart. He stopped snapping pictures because he felt extreme guilt for his sisters injury. He feels he does not deserve better because of the hurt and pain he has caused. As Davis and Ivy work together to help his Aunt Marilyn with a fashion show they grow closer. Because of the way Ivy is treated in this small town, she questions her beliefs. Is it possible God could want her, is she really worthy? She has watched her step mother carry deep hurts and still trust in God. Can Ivy be forgiven, redeemed and found worthy in God&rsquo;s sight? The author Katie Ganshert did an outstanding job of brining these characters to life. They experienced some of the same feeling me and you experience in our lifetime. I found Broken Kind of Beautiful to be thought provoking and pulled at the heartstrings. I highly recommend this 5 star book and any other by this author. A big thank you goes out to author Katie Ganshert and publisher for bringing thought provoking and compelling Christian books to readers like me. Books that are full of faith, clean and inspire me with hope. Blogging for Books provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review and I am so grateful for their, the authors and publishers generosity.
BrittanyMc More than 1 year ago
Modeling sensation Ivy Clark is what the world considers a success. She is beautiful on the outside, but there are serious hurts dwelling inside of her. They make her feel useless, worthless, empty and unlovable. Davis Knight is a strong and caring man who is loved by his family, but carries guilt around like a heavy burden. He is a man who loves and trusts in God, but won&rsquo;t stop punishing himself for past mistakes. These are broken people. They aren&rsquo;t broken in the same way, but they both need healing. Although the main story revolves around Davis and Ivy and focuses on Ivy&rsquo;s path toward emotional healing and her journey toward a God who redeems those who feel unlovable, I found beauty in this novel in all of the broken characters. There are many examples of broken individuals. Years ago, one character felt broken by her husband&rsquo;s infidelity. The pain of infertility on top of unfaithfulness left her broken before God. She had to learn to trust in Him to carry her through. Another character lost a vital part of her life when her sight was taken from her. She felt broken, then God opened her eyes to a new way of trusting in Him. Still another character had a broken body, ravaged with cancer. Many people were trusting in God for her healing. God was in all of these situations and the author did a beautiful job of showing that through this moving story. So much changes for Ivy through this book. She is nowhere near the same person by the end of the novel as she is at the beginning. But her transformation is believable. She does not suddenly change who she is. Healing happens slowly. This was a very good book that I really enjoyed reading. The characters felt very real and the hurts they carried were large hurdles to overcome. A beautiful story. I received a complimentary Advance Reading Copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, which I have given.
SVickers More than 1 year ago
After reading Katie Ganshert&rsquo;s first two novels, I anxiously awaited her next! Katie certainly did not disappoint! A Broken Kind of Beautiful was fabulously written. This book captivated me from the first pages. Katie is able to make you feel as if her characters are true friends or family. She has the ability to bring her characters to life. I cannot relate to what it is like to be a model, but Katie was able to make me feel like in several ways I could actually relate to Ivy. A Broken Kind of Beautiful will make you laugh and cry! We are reminded throughout this book that God loves us no matter what. In the book one of the Bible verses that is shared with Ivy in part states &ldquo;I have called you by name. You are mine&rdquo;. So many times since reading and finishing this book, I have thought and prayed this verse. Sometimes you need to be broken to actually see God&rsquo;s love for you. Katie has blessed me in so many ways with this book. Thank you Katie for writing such an inspirational book! I highly recommend this book to anyone. I can&rsquo;t wait share this book with my family, friends, and Library patrons!!
mustlovetoread More than 1 year ago
A Broken Kind of Beautiful By: Katie Ganshert If you only read one book this year, this is it. Katie Ganshert does a wonderful job showing how God can take someone who is broken and makes her whole and beautiful in Him. A Broken Kind of Beautiful is a powerful message to everyone who has been hurt, broken, or feels unloved. If God is for you, who can be against you? Have you ever had someone that really loved you and sought you out and made sure you were okay? God is calling you in the same way. He loves you so much and wants you safe in His love. After reading this book, I was filled with peace, joy, and love. God wants all of that for His children. We just have to accept it, as Ivy did. God sees behind all the layers we build to hide our true selves from everybody else. But God still sees us, all of us, knows us, and loves us. I could feel Ivy&rsquo;s brokenness, but with her I experienced her being made whole and beautiful by God. God may not answer our prayers the way we think He should, but he knows and cares for us. He has only the best for His children. Pick up this book today and enjoy Ivy&rsquo;s journey from brokenness to beautiful. God gathered all the broken pieces and made something new. He can for you too. I received an advanced reader copy in exchange for an honest review.
JulieWallace More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderful book. It's a Christian Romance and has many great life lessons. Ivy Clark has been on top of the world as a fashion model. An industry where looks are everything Ivy is considered beyond her prime at the age of twenty-four. The only job she can land is modeling wedding gowns for the one person who should despise her, her stepmother Marilyn.  Davis Knight is a talented photographer but doesn't take pictures anymore. He only agrees to take pictures of Ivy to help his Aunt out. The bridal show will raise money for his blind sister and the art school she wants to attend. Davis blames himself for his sister&rsquo;s blindness and feels this is his punishment.  At first, you don&rsquo;t want to like Ivy but as you learn about her background you can&rsquo;t help but feel sorry for her. Ivy was the result of an affair. Marilyn forgave Ivy&rsquo;s father and destroyed any hopes Ivy's mom had of them being a happy family. Marilyn never had children of her own so she reached out to Ivy and had her visit them during the summer. That only made things worse. Ivy's father completely ignored her and she hated him for it. Ivy's Uncle took her under his wing as her agent and at the age of fourteen Ivy was thrown into a world that made her grow up way to fast. Ten years later, Ivy stood at her father&rsquo;s funeral and felt nothing for the man. It was her Uncle who made her go. Davis remembered the sad little girl who would visit his Aunt Marilyn and had followed her career as a beautiful model. Ivy is use to being lusted after and she knew Davis was no different. When they are thrown together as model and photographer Davis can&rsquo;t help being attracted to her but she is not the kind of woman he&rsquo;s looking for. Ivy&rsquo;s career is falling apart and Davis is the answer to getting it all back.  Katie does a great job of giving us real people to care about and learn from. I cried my eyes out many times while reading this story&mdash; happy tears and sad tears. I suggest you don't plan anything for a day and curl up in your favorite reading spot and read this book. You will not be disappointed.