Whose Waves These Are

Whose Waves These Are

by Amanda Dykes


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In the wake of WWII, a grieving fisherman submits a poem to a local newspaper: a rallying cry for hope, purpose . . . and rocks. Send me a rock for the person you lost, and I will build something life-giving. When the poem spreads farther than he ever intended, Robert Bliss's humble words change the tide of a nation. Boxes of rocks inundate the tiny, coastal Maine town, and he sets his calloused hands to work, but the building halts when tragedy strikes.

Decades later, Annie Bliss is summoned back to Ansel-by-the-Sea when she learns her Great-Uncle Robert, the man who became her refuge during the hardest summer of her youth, is now the one in need of help. What she didn't anticipate was finding a wall of heavy boxes hiding in his home. Long-ago memories of stone ruins on a nearby island trigger her curiosity, igniting a fire in her anthropologist soul to uncover answers.

She joins forces with the handsome and mysterious harbor postman, and all her hopes of mending the decades-old chasm in her family seem to point back to the ruins. But with Robert failing fast, her search for answers battles against time, a foe as relentless as the ever-crashing waves upon the sea.  

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780764232664
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/30/2019
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 120,470
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Amanda Dykes, a former English teacher, is a drinker of tea, dweller of redemption, and spinner of hope-filled tales. Her novella, Bespoke: A Tiny Christmas Tale, was met with critical acclaim from Publishers Weekly, Readers' Favorite, and more. Whose Waves These Are is her debut novel. Find her online at www.amandadykes.com.

Read an Excerpt


Ansel-by-the-Sea, Maine September 1944

One minute a guy is splitting wood in the northeastern corner of the country, stomach rumbling and heart afire with ambition in the wake of his eighteenth birthday, and the next minute he's pumping water from the old kitchen sink to clean the work o_ his hands and pick up a letter from the president of the United States of America himself. It lies there on the red, paint- chipped kitchen table, like an old friend who has let himself in and put his feet up, the most natural thing in the world.

But it's anything but natural.

Somewhere in transit on the postman's boat ride across the bay, the letter has taken on some drops of water. The mail usually does in Ansel-by-the-Sea, and the postman doubles as a sleuth, delivering letters with partial addresses with infallible accuracy. This time the name is blurred, only Bliss and the house name legible. Usually just a name suffices, or if one was being very formal, the house's name. Sailor's Rest.

Robert Bliss rips it open, grips it too hard.


His pulse pounds in his ears. This is it. Almost exactly four years now, he's waited for this day. Ever since he'd gathered along with the rest of the town to watch President Roosevelt announce the first number of the draft. They'd watched on the town's only television, over at the Bait, Tackle, and Books shop, craning to see the capsules filling a towering glass bowl on the screen. Tiny white papers, each inscribed with a number and rolled up tight. A man had lifted a wooden spoon — hewn from the very marrow of the room where the Declaration of Independence was signed long ago — and stirred. Slow and sacred, moving the numbers until they were as mixed up as the war-torn world outside their country. Even through the television's grainy image, Robert could feel the thick gravity of the moment in that room of Washington men, electric with awareness that these numbers ... they were people. Families. Lives about to be turned upside down by this thing called the draft.

Four years later the electricity pulses through Robert still, assurance that this is what he was made for. For such a time as this.

He holds the letter a moment longer, feeling a thousand nights of prayers gathered up in it. Answered here. That finally, at eighteen, he could go. Finally — though they'd closed enlistment "to protect the home- front workforce" and he couldn't just sign up — the draft is calling him to rise and fight. Protect. The only thing he has ever been good at.

He runs a thumb over the crookedly stamped return address in the upper-left corner — the local draft board.

The President of the United States,

Not yet ready to read the salutation, Robert skims down to the bold word GREETING in all capitals.

Having submitted yourself to a local board composed of your neighbors for the purpose of determining your availability for training and service in the land or naval forces of the United States, you are hereby notified that you have now been selected for training and service therein.

Selected. Training. Service. Robert's breath comes quick at those words.

You will, therefore, report to the local board named above at

The next words are hand- typed in.

Machias Railroad Station at 7:15 A.M., on the 17th day of October, 1944.

He scans the rest and then closes his eyes. Swallows. There's one line yet to read, and a part of him doesn't want to read it. It'll be his name. It has to be. Still, a knot twists in his stomach at the knowledge that there is one other soul in this family whose name might appear there instead.

The clock ticks into the silence as Germany rains fire over Britain across the ocean. And he returns to the top of the letter.

To —

The screen door slams, jolting Robert. Instinct closes the letter, tucks it behind his back. It's his brother, Roy, giving him a mouth-shut grin as he chews, a half- gone apple in his hand. He is Robert's twin in every way but two: Roy came two minutes earlier into the world, and Roy now wears a simple band on his left ring finger.

One that, try as Robert might to stop it, still sears something awful into him every time he sees it.

"Come on," Roy says. "We're going for a clam dig."

Robert folds the letter slowly, hoping not to draw attention to it. "We?"

"You. Me. Jenny. And ..." Roy takes a breath, his shoulders wide. There's something of the little kid in him, some untold excitement. "Someone else, too. You'll see when we get there. Let's go."

Robert nods, slides the letter into his back pocket. He's been avoiding these outings with the newlyweds, but the letter drives him, wanting to get Roy as far from it as he can. But Roy's grin freezes. He's spotted the empty envelope on the table.

Two lanky strides and he's spun the envelope still on the table to read its nameless text. Sees, no doubt, that it's from the War Department.

Heaviness rolls through the room like a tide. They both know there are only two people it could be for, and they're standing face-to-face.

Robert's jaw locks.

Roy gestures to Robert's pocket. "Is that the letter?"

It's like lifting lead, but Robert pulls it out.

Roy snatches it, unfolds it, reads it from the beginning — and his face goes white.

Robert's heart lands in his stomach. He can't see the letter, but he can read his brother's face. And it's not the answer Robert hoped for.

The screen door creaks open but doesn't slam this time. That would be Jenny, the gentle closing of the door so like her. A month and a half a wife and, as their mom liked to say, she had the glow of a bride.

"Poor as church mice and rich as kings," Jenny had said when Roy showed her the wedding bands. He'd carved them from the wood of an old-growth tree Dad and Mom had found on the mountain many years ago.

Robert's gaze settles on Jenny as she approaches behind her husband, wood-and-wire clam hod in hand. Cheeks touched with the chilly wind, she looks brighter than ever — with a quiet beauty that can take a man's breath right out of him. Robert looks at the floor.

"Did you tell him?" She slips her hand into Roy's. Robert forces himself to look. This is how he needs to see her. Together with Roy. He must look, so his heart will see, so his soul will follow. She's Roy's now, Roy's forever.

"I ..." Roy looks at her as if there's a whole ocean between them. She squeezes his hand and chatters on, her melodic voice at an excited tempo, weaving through the silent currents the letter has brought.

"Well," she says, "your mother was thrilled. You should have seen her, Roy." She laughs, and it's music. "She jumped right in the Ford and took off for Machias to see Mrs. Laughlin about some yarn. She says she has to get started knitting a blanket ..." She talks on, her hand falling to her stomach. The leaden weight inside Robert grows. He looks from Jenny, to Roy, to the letter. And back at Roy. A baby. And Roy standing there with a letter that may as well be from the grim reaper.

His brother locks his stare with Robert's. Everything fades away, and they're ten years old again, looking out over the ocean as a storm bigger than their whole universe approaches and Dad motors off to town to fetch Mom home before it hits. "Stick together, boys," he hollers, and disappears around their island. "Keep inside away from the storm, and don't let each other out of your sight." Robert had failed then. He could not fail now.

Jenny has stopped talking, the flush on her face fading as her smile does, too. "What is it?" she asks, watching this unspoken knowing go on between the brothers.

Roy shakes his head. "Nothing. I'll tell you later." He grasps for — and finds — a smile, pulls Jenny close until her head is leaning on his shoulder.

And just as they've done a thousand times since their youth, the three of them walk down to the clam flats by Milton Farm and dig up a bounty. Jenny swinging the basket, Roy hauling a clam rake and grinning at her as if she's gold itself, and Robert's chest yawning into a cavern over this injustice.

"What's got you all tongue-tied?" Jenny's sprinkling of freckles over her petite nose drives the stake deeper in him. But for her ... even now, he tries to muster some semblance of a smile. It feels so mangled and forced on his face, he probably looks like a bloated puffer fish. She laughs, all silvery, and some of the edge falls away inside him.

He knows, despite everything — looking at her and looking at his brother, who wouldn't hurt a fly — he would do anything for them.

"You two meeting up tonight?" Jenny looks between them, entwining her fingers with Roy's. "For your birthday tradition. I didn't hear you mention it, so I wasn't sure ..."

Roy looks at Jenny, drinking her in, knowing what she doesn't know yet. That any time spent away from her now is time that cannot be reclaimed in this ticking clock of a draft. Any time spent on the island of their boyhood, resurrecting their juvenile midnight-birthday traditions, is priceless time away from his bride.

"I was thinking we'd maybe skip it this year," Roy says. He looks at Robert, and the message is clear: Please understand.

He understands more in this moment than he ever has and prays Roy won't hate him for this. For there is only one thing that can make this right.

"No," Robert says. He flinches at how abrupt it sounds, sticking his foot in his mouth like always, fumbling with words. "I mean — let's meet up." He pastes that puffer-fish grin back on his face. "Please? For old times' sake. Just one last time."

Those words hit Roy harder than Robert intended. Too much silence passes, and Jenny looks quizzically between them. "Go ahead," she says, laying an arm gently over her slim stomach once more. "Who knows how many more times you'll be able to do this?"

The question, meant in kindness, socks Robert hard. If all goes well tonight, Roy's days with Jenny will never end.


Excerpted from "Whose Waves These Are"
by .
Copyright © 2019 Amanda Joy Dykes.
Excerpted by permission of Baker Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Whose Waves These Are 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 52 reviews.
Anonymous 30 days ago
Beautifully written. One of the best books I've read this year. I had trouble putting it down. I cried and laughed and when I turned the last page it left me wanting more. I highly recommend this book.
Anonymous 6 months ago
This is an absolutely beautiful story that brings life on the shores of Maine to life. The characters are so authentic andendearing they capture your heart. Amanda's writing is so excellent and this is her debut novel how exciting is that! I highly recommend this book!
Anonymous 15 days ago
I loved the chacters in this beautiful story, spanning the generations . Each soul contributing to the woven tapestry of this town and the mysterious tower, rising from the island , built on tears and hope.
irishniff 4 months ago
This book caught my attention because so many authors were recommending it. After finishing this gripping story, I now know why. Amanda Dykes has crafted dual time frame heart wrenching stories that pulled me in and would not let me go. The WWII section was well researched and realistic. Both stories are filled with memorable lessons learned by her unique characters. The interesting romances are well written. I think that the Maine setting drew me in just as much as the stories. Her townspeople make the reader want to live there. Now I am recommending this book with the same enthusiasm I heard from others.
summer_no9 4 months ago
This book had a beautiful writing and compelling to read in every chapter and in every page you reading with that also had a greatest story from WWII and the character with their struggle and the secret rock message that keep from family can be effect in every part of their life it like a waves of the ocean. This story will delightful moving you to love romance, heart breaking of how their can finding hope together. I highly recommend to everyone must to read this book. “ I received complimentary a copy of this book from Bethany House for this review”.
GailHollingsworth 7 months ago
This book was very special to me for many reasons. The stones that were sent to Bob included one that represented my father-in-Law that was included in the author’s acknowledgements. But stories that are written partly during the time of WWII are meaningful as well, the greatest generation of men and women. Brave souls that are due all the recognition and more. The book characters were presented in a way that I cared for them as friends and neighbors. Annie, Bob, Roy, William and Jeremiah were used to show historical events, family relationships, forgiveness and love. The novel carried me through various emotions throughout. One quote, “each wave has a story”, gave me goose bumps. And the fact that God owns and controls the waves is a testament to his strength but also to his care for each of us. Light VS darkness was mentioned several times and put meaning behind what Bob was trying to do in honor of his twin Roy. For a debut fictional novel, Amanda Dykes has shown the world that she has an amazing talent. I’m looking forward to the future and what she can bring to it. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the author but was not required to write a review positive or otherwise. All opinions are my own.
TheBeccaFiles 8 months ago
There are books to be read and books to be experienced. Whose Waves These Are is truly an experience not to be missed. I've had quite a high TBR pile and so I set the rule that I couldn't add any books to my list until I dwindled down what I had, but after seeing so many rave reviews for this one I couldn't help but break my rule and get my hands on a copy. When I first started reading I'll admit that I wondered what about this book created so much hype. I was quickly drawn in and didn't want to put it down, but I was still wondering what the "wow" factor was going to be. I'm not going to spoil it for you, but it's there! Tissues will certainly come in handy. I did quite a bit of ugly crying through the last 2/3 of the book or so. I was sucked so deeply into the world of Bob and his family that it felt like it had become my own. My heart was taken on a rollercoaster ride with a splash at the end. To say I was left in a book fog would be quite the understatement! What truly sucked me into this novel was that it was about people with broken hearts trying to relearn how to navigate the world around them in the midst of their pain. No one is exempt from heartache in their lives, but some certainly seem to be handed bigger doses than others. Everyone handles the pain they face differently, and sometimes that leads to healing while other times it ends up leading to more brokenness. How this played out in the lives of the characters was truly a remarkable journey. I can be an emotional reader but I was surprised how deeply this story sucked me in. For much of the ending I was either crying or on the verge of tears. There was no way this book was being put down until I had reached the ending. I now understand what everyone was talking about, and I can now officially join them in saying that this book is a must-read you won't want to miss! *I received a copy of this book through NetGalley. Thoughts and opinions expressed are mine alone.
sandralb 9 months ago
WOW! I have a new favorite book of the year. I don't know where to start so I don't just gush. I will try to do justice to this book in my review. I have read Amanda's work before and enjoyed it very much. I had so many books on my TBR stack by my bed, I didn't know when I would get to her new one. Everywhere I turned I was reading about how good Whose Waves These Are, so I dropped everything and decided to get started on it. I picked this book up and could not put it down. Two-thirty in the morning I finally had to get some sleep. As soon as I could, I completed it the next day. I am still reeling from it. I just want to give it more than five stars. It's definitely a ten. It's been a long time since I've done the ugly cry over a book. Just when I thought I could get myself together, something wonderful and unexpected happened and I shed some tears about that. Please don't get me wrong, this is not a doom and gloom book, by no means. There are so many touching love scenes. Not just between Annie and Jeremiah “Fletch”, I'm talking about love between identical twins, love of family, love of your home town and love for each other. Amanda's characters are so real. I loved them all for their own individually quirkiness. I don't know if I could pick a favorite. I have a terrible fear of he water like Annie, so I could so relate to her. I just want to move to Ansel-by-the-sea, Maine and become part of this beautiful community.
Carol-Kelley 11 months ago
A wonderful novel by Amanda Dykes, Whose Waves These Are! I enjoyed the different time lines and stories that interconnect. Robert Bliss is a grieving fisherman during WWII who affects a change in peoples lives. Continuing into present day, his great niece summoned to Ansel-by-the-Sea. A place of refuge during a difficult time in her youth, to help her uncle who she discovers is in a comma. She meets the the handsome harbor postmaster and they join together to solve the mystery of the rocks. A lovely story with romance, danger and healing. This was my first novel by Amanda Dykes and I'm looking forward to more from her. I received this book from NetGalley and all opinions are my own.
nhr3bookcrazyNR 12 months ago
Great story! Very original and totally enthralling. Definitely recommend this awesome book.
ConsultingWriter 12 months ago
Whose Waves Those Are tells the story of love, courage, sacrifice, loss and hope. The novel covers three different generations and how they're drawn to Ansel-by-the-Sea. Twin brothers, one drafted for war, the other wanting to go in his place. It's difficult to write this review because I don't want to spoil it for readers. Historical fiction fans will especially not want to pass this one up. I've always mention whether or not there's romance in these stories, and in this one there is, but it doesn't overwhelm or detract from the main story. Author Amanda Dykes has written a captivating tale that weaves multiple separate stories and families into one. The idea of the lighthouse was an interesting. Bob pens a poem that inspires others to send memory rocks in honor of a loved one. He uses those rocks to build a lighthouse. This got me searching to see if anyone had actually tried something similar in the past. It reminded me of something I'd seen in a movie once, a small stone carin built as a memorial. While I couldn't find any lighthouse specifically built from the stones of families in memory of fallen soldiers or missing loved ones during a war, I did find a memory stone mound. It's an interesting idea and one I'm surprised isn't done more often. There's something to be said about the more personal nature of stones hand picked by family members, rather than something erected by the state or government. I also had to ask the author: "What locale inspired Ansel-By-The-Sea? Here's what she wrote: "The inspiration for Ansel-by-the-Sea was a combination of many coastal towns in Downeast Maine, including Cutler, Bar Harbor, Isle au Haute, Stonington, Rockport, and Buck's Harbor." So, if after reading your copy of Whose Waves These Are you get the desire to visit the town in Maine, plan to explore several spots that inspired the author. Sounds like a nice trip to me. Whose Waves These Are is a good read. The story moves at a good pace. There's never a dull moment. Just lots of history, which I enjoy. I received a complimentary copy from BethanyHouse. The honest opinions in this review are my own. Pick up a copy and give it a try. Who knows? Maybe you'll be inspired to erect a memory stone monument in your area.
Phyllis_H 12 months ago
A beautiful story My rating is 4.5 stars Where to start? There was a wonderfully rich assortment of characters peopling this story. So many stories to tell of lives touched by war. Bob, a man of courage who had longed to go fight in place of his twin yet denied that right by the government and by Roy. Annie, Bob’s grandniece who was afraid to live her life fully after making a costly mistake. Jeremiah, the EMT/postman, with his mysterious past. And the countless others touched by these lives. Despite a large number of people inhabiting this story, I didn’t find it difficult to keep track them, most likely because I was made to care deeply for them, even those with only brief appearances. I was impressed at how the story covered such a long period of time, yet it did not feel shallow and didn’t drag. The pace was just right and the way Bob’s secret was slowly revealed kept my interest until the end. I was surprised in a number of places and enjoyed the many types of love that were displayed. The storyline itself and the lovely descriptions deserve a full five stars. although, despite my very emotional connection with the story, the first-person present tense narration distracted me throughout. Perhaps it would have improved things had the author chosen to use this perspective for just one character or just one time period. I do recommend this book for those who enjoy historical fiction. I am looking forward to reading more books by Amanda Dykes. Read my review of Whose Waves These Are by Amanda Dykes at AmongTheReads.net I was given a copy of this book. I was not required to give a favorable review nor was any money received for this review. All comments and opinions are my own.
RockandMinerals4Him More than 1 year ago
THIS!!! WAS A SWEET STORY!!! It was such a sweet cross between a WWII story and a contemporary (ish) story, and everything wrapped together SO WELL!!! Spoken from two points of view: one during/just after WWII, and one in 2001, the story covers the stories of Roy and Annie, as well as the rest of their family. Both of the timelines really came to life, and I enjoyed it so much! I also really enjoyed the setting: it was set on an island, small-town style, and it felt really nostalgic all around. And BOB. I loooooved him! He went through so much in his life, but he still held so much purpose and love towards those around him, and it was amaZing. I was a little wary of starting this book, since this was a debut novel, which usually means it could go one of two ways: really well or really poorly. This one was one that went really well! IT MADE ME CRY, GUYS. The two storylines eventually melded into one: the story of one family, throughout the ages, and it MADE SENSE so much. Unlike most Christian fiction, this story wasn’t just between a guy and a girl: there was also the story between siblings, community, family, and especially parents and their kids. Not only that, but the faith bits were so well done: they were just woven into the storyline, and it wasn’t a “I need to put this in because this is a Christian fiction book” type deal. Overall, this was a beaUtiful book! The writing style was beautiful: it was super poetic and smooth, but filled with emotion and thought. I loved the twist at the end that brought everything together: I love books that do that, and this one was done so well! If you haven’t read this book, or even heard of it, GO READ IT. IT IS BEAUTIFUL. Thank you to the publisher for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review; I was not required to write a positive review. This review first appeared on: https://losingthebusyness.wordpress.com/2019/06/19/book-review-whose-waves-these-are-by-amanda-dykes/
Becky5 More than 1 year ago
“Every wave in that big old blue sea is a story.” With these words, young Annie’s great-uncle finds a way to unlock some of her fears and turn them into something beautiful. But when she returns to Ansel-by-the-Sea as an adult, will she have the key she needs to unlock her adult fears and turn them to confident love and purpose? Amanda Dykes may be a name I had never heard before, but by penning Whose Waves These Are she is rapidly garnering attention in the Christian fiction world. I predict this novel will win an award for a debut novel in 2019. A time-slip book, the reader is tossed like the sea between young Annie as she grows up, a mature Annie of the present, and a young Robert Bliss whose twin is drafted in 1944. Annie is a great heroine. One can’t help but root for her as she returns to look for her great-uncle. Will she grow enough to fit in and find her place in this seashore town? The pieces to this puzzle are more numerous than I expected and definitely include Annie’s parents. A story like this, told chronologically, would have been interesting. By creating a time-slip out of it, and adding the unexpected twists, Dykes produces a work nothing short of amazing! Some favorite quotes: The first and most important to me- “Life is big. And God is bigger.” “You’re a good man. Let me try to be one, too.” “He wasn’t the oldest, but they both knew he was the one who had the fury of a nor’easter inside him, a fury he could use to fight.” “She imagines people as combination locks, each bit of information a tick on the dial as she works to build up their story in her mind, to unlock them.” “...if everything around you is broken, it’s time to unbreak something.” When Annie is trying to figure out her purpose: “‘The microbes,’ he says, ‘only have a single cell. And they use it to capture sunlight all day— their sole purpose. At night, when danger comes, ...they don’t run. They don’t shrivel up or hide. They release the sunlight they’ve been storing up, right into the darkness. They fight it back by lighting up.’” Expect a small town, big hearts, sweet romances, tragedy, and miracles. Expect a blessing in this book. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This in no way affects my opinions, which are solely my own.
bp0602 More than 1 year ago
I recently finished reading Whose Waves These Are by Amanda Dykes. I had seen this book mentioned online as a new release and the description sounded interesting. I cannot say how much I loved this book! The characters drew me in and the setting made me want to plan a trip to Maine. This is a beautiful story. I wasn't sure if I would like the book when I started reading but I quickly fell in love with the story. The more I read the more I loved it. I liked how it jumped to different time periods. This made it more interesting to me. I felt the author did a great job tying together the characters and their pain. I look forward to reading more books from this author, and I hope they are as beautiful as this book. I requested this one from my library.
bmrawlins More than 1 year ago
This was a delightful maritime story. I was pulled in immediately by the dialogue and wanting to know more of the outcome. I enjoyed that it was time-slip and offered a resolution of all the interwoven stories. The characters are a bit rough and gruff, real, and I fell in love with them immediately. Dykes created a place in my mind that I truly want to visit; I want to see the rocks and the small museum created to honor all those men, women, and families. Wonderful debut novel and well worth the time and emotional investment to read. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Cheryl_G- More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! It isn't the kind of book I usually read, but I'm so glad I did. I am in awe of Amanda Dykes ability to weave a very touching story. The characters were so real, flawed even, but were able to overcome the challenges they faced. The storyline was so compelling. There were some tense moments, but I liked that during those moments, the author reminded me that God is in control. I will definitely be recommending this book to my friends. I look forward to reading more of her books. I was given a copy of this book to review. I was asked to give an honest review. The opinions expressed are mine.
SavannaKaiser More than 1 year ago
You know that joy of discovering a new favorite author? That wonderful warmth of settling into a beautiful story and not wanting it to end? Well, friends, this story was one of those for me. Whose Waves These Are is a book not to be missed. It’s easily one of my favorites of 2019. The author’s voice from the get-go was so poignant and powerful. Even poetic. The story felt completely fresh and new. The characters felt like part of the family and the small Maine village became a place I longed to visit in real life. As the layers and secrets build one upon another, I didn’t want to put the book down. The unexpected gave way to a powerful message of hope and healing and family. So many unforgettable stories packed within one book – stories of finding refuge, fighting bravely, honoring lost loved ones, sharing the light, letting go of the past. My heart is so full after reading them all. After I reached the end and wiped the tears from my eyes, my next thought was… Everyone should read this book. It truly is a treasure. I will be watching this talented author for more well-crafted and heartfelt tales. And I hope you do the same.
AMHeath More than 1 year ago
My Thoughts: There comes a time when you find a story beautifully written, but somehow it just doesn’t work for you. Sadly, this was one of those moments for me. But what didn’t work for me, may still work for you! In chapter one, I was pulled into the world and relationship between twin brothers, Robert and Roy. It wasn’t hard to ache with both of them for different reasons. The story bounces back and forth between the present day to the 1940s. I personally LOVE dual timelines. And this was certainly one that I was eager to dig into. Dykes chose to tell this story in the third person, present tense. Present tense is never a big hit for me, but I was pages into this novel before I even realized it! That’s never happened to me before. She definitely earns an award for getting me to “eat my veggies” without me knowing it. Ansel-by-the-Sea is a charming town, in both the past present. The casts of both worlds are equally endearing. And Dykes has a very lovely poetic style of writing. However, what makes it beautiful also slows it down. Whose Waves These Are is the sort of story that begs the reader to stop, breathe deeply of the salty air, and enjoy every word written on the page. Unfortunately for me, I’m in a phase of life where slowing down isn’t the luxury it ought to be, so this one was harder for me to get into. Rating and Recommendation: I’m giving it 4 stars and I recommend it to those who enjoy dual timelines, WWII fiction, and poetic descriptions. ~ I received a copy from Bethany House. I was not compensated for this review. All thoughts are my own.
tickmenot More than 1 year ago
An Amazing Story, Don’t Miss It! As a child, Annie Bliss was allowed to spend one idyllic summer with her great uncle Bob in his small village in Maine. The little girl and crusty fisherman bonded completely, but because of the mysterious rift between Bob and her father, Annie was never allowed to visit him again. Now an adult, she is suddenly summoned back to Bob’s side where Annie finds him languishing in a coma. As she spends days hoping and praying for him to awaken, she stumbles across some interesting clues that may point to how Bob has spent his life. As Annie tries to discover what these puzzling items mean, she uncovers an amazing story of love, loss, grief, and renewal. Besides the incredible life she learns Bob has lived, she finds the unbelievable way past actions can link to our, as well as other’s, futures–and those links can even impact love relationships. Annie may have even unearthed the mystery involving her dad and Bob. This is an amazing story that will grab your heart and won’t let go. Bob is almost bigger than life because of the way he has lived, even to the end, regardless of incredible limitations. However, this is a believable story. Having personally been brought up by parents who were part of the Greatest Generation, I can attest to many of them living life the same as Bob. Despite the hardships of the Great Depression and the losses of a World War, that group kept going without losing their “never give up” attitude. Amanda Dykes has written a terrific story that is entertaining and a real page turner, but it is also a love story to the Greatest Generation. This may be the first novel this author has written, but I predict we will be hearing more from her. This story will quickly draw you in and leave you wanting more. It shows how today’s choices can end up crossing paths with others’ lives, even in generations to come. This tale has it all and is told from a Christian point of view. I highly recommend this 5+ star book to anyone who enjoys well-written fiction. Bethany House Publishing has provided bookreadingtic with a complimentary copy of Whose Waves These Are, for the purpose of review. I have not been compensated in any other manner. All opinions expressed are my own, and I was not required, or influenced, to give anything but an honest appraisal. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
Heidi_Reads More than 1 year ago
The first word I thought of to describe the vibe of this book is otherworldly. Not in a sci-fi way, but in a beautiful hazy way like waking up and remembering what you just dreamed. The historical and contemporary stories are woven together and draw curiosity out of the reader as layers of the plot and characters are revealed and new questions arise. There is heartbreak that is inevitable from the war-time era, but healing and growth as well. The strength of Robert, Roy, their family, and the community members of Ansel is evident and I felt like Annie- like I don't quite belong but I want to because it feels like home. Her journey of discovery is lovely as her heart turns more fully to her family and really knowing them and what drives them, their motivations, their past. I loved the way the elements of the story worked together to bring a satisfying conclusion to the book. (I received a complimentary copy of the book; all opinions in this review are my own)
Mandy Elliott More than 1 year ago
* I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts below are my own. When Whose Waves These Are landed on my doorstep, I couldn’t wait to dive in to this story! What I didn’t anticipate was the way my very soul would connect to this novel - the characters, the story, and how it and they would be forever written on my heart. Whose Waves These Are is captivating, soulful, emotional and layered but not overwhelming. Rather, it is a beautiful tale that evokes joy, laughter and hope amidst the trials life deals. The characters’ stories are real and heartrending, yet triumphant. I’m certain readers will find a piece of this story that they relate to and empathize with. The pages of Whose Waves These Are stirred my soul, filled my heart and brought tears to my eyes. The characters and their unique stories, the way the book split history and present day, plus the way Amanda Dykes masterfully pulled it all together into one novel is extraordinary. It is so well written and so beautiful… When I finished this story, I sighed. An audible, tear filled sigh that the story had come full circle. Love won, redemption was found and my heart was full. Now, as I write this review, I fear my words aren’t going to do justice for this novel. Instead of revealing the plot or mentioning the characters by name, I’ll simply leave my review at this - I recommend you read this book. Allow your heart to feel the writer’s words, absorb the narration and embrace the characters. When you’re finished, you won’t be the same.
OntoHerBookshelf More than 1 year ago
Whose Waves These Are is a story to savor. This I knew from the moment I read the back-cover copy. Then as I delved into the story, it became even more apparent. Amanda Dykes writes in a literary style that pulls you in and invites you to soak in the thought-out and deep-rooted words. That alone made this a novel worth reading, but as I progressed deeper into the story, I fell in love with it even more. I loved that this was a time-split novel. Part of it is told from Robert’s point of view, and part from Annie’s. Both are such strong, interesting characters. Their individual struggles and longings for courage were profound. Their journeys of faith as they came to understand who God is, and His loving, oh-so-dear presence through every storm, is one that resonates deeply. I rarely cry when it comes to a story, whether movies or books, but this one had tears falling at one point. There is a bit of romance in this book, but it’s not the central theme. Whose Waves These Are reminded me of a Russian Nesting Doll. Stories within stories, waves upon waves, this book was multi-layered and richly done. This is a don’t-miss novel, in my opinion. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
Bringingupbooks More than 1 year ago
I am having trouble adequately expressing the ranges of emotions that this book gave me. I think that it is truly rare to come across a debut novel which is so beautiful and moving. Amanda Dykes is exceptionally gifted with storytelling and descriptive writing. Her words lure you into her story and allow the images and emotions written on the pages to just settle into your soul as the story unfolds. This story is so thought provoking and inspiring! I loved it! Ok, here is all the honesty…I cried like ten times while reading this book. Happy tears, sad tears, sappy tears, all the tears. This novel had so many layers that combined together in all the right ways to create such a memorable book. As someone who has dealt with loss, I really connected with the way it was represented in this story. This book is a total five star read, but more than that it is memorable. Whose Waves These Are is going to stick with me. I absolutely recommend this novel! It was every bit as good as I anticipated and I am eagerly anticipating whatever comes next from Amanda Dykes!
Windi More than 1 year ago
Whose Waves These Are took hold of my soul from page one and didn't let go through the acknowledgements in the end. WOW! I've been waiting on a full length novel by Amanda Dykes since I read her two Christmas Novellas: Bespoke and Tin Can Serenade. She did not disappoint! This debut novel is every bit as rich and exquisitely written. This book deserves a sit down and soak it in kind of reading time - intent on losing yourself in Ansel-By-The-Sea and her characters through the generations. I recommend starting with the novella prequel "Up From The Sea" to gain a richer history of the main characters. (I believe it is free right now on Kindle). Well Done Amanda Dykes - I hope we get to see more of Annie, Jeremiah, and future generations from Ansel-By-The-Sea "Eines Tages" (some day). I own this book and would definitely recommend to anyone who loves a great story worthy of getting lost in for a bit. All opinions are expressly my own.