Finding Libbie Review

About the Book: 

Poring over a dusty hatbox of photographs in her grandmother’s closet, Emily Prentice is shocked to discover her father was married to his high school sweetheart before meeting her mother.

In the summer of 1968, Jack and Libbie fall in love under the spell of their small town, untouched by the chaos of the late sixties. Though Libbie’s well-to-do parents disapprove of Jack’s humble family and his aspiration to become a mechanic, she marries Jack a year after they graduate high school. But soon their happiness crumbles as Libbie’s mental state unravels and she is drawn to alcohol and drugs. Despite his efforts to help her, Jack loses the woman he loves and is forced to move on with his life.

Now that Emily’s mother has passed away, Jack is alone again, and Emily grows obsessed with the beautiful woman who had given her father such joy. Determined to find Libbie, Emily pieces together the couple’s fragmented past. But is it too late for happy endings?

About the Author:

Deanna Lynn Sletten grew up on the sunny coast of Southern California before moving to northern Minnesota as a teenager. Her interest in writing novels was sparked in a college English class, and she has been writing in some form or another ever since. In 2011, Deanna self-published her first novel and has since published several more, both on her own and with Lake Union Publishing.

Deanna enjoys writing heartwarming women’s fiction and romance novels with unforgettable characters. She has also written one middle-grade novel that takes readers on the adventure of a lifetime. She believes in fate, destiny, love at first sight, soul mates, second chances, magic, and happily ever after—all of which are reflected in her novels.

Deanna is married and has two grown children. When not writing, she enjoys walking the wooded trails around her home with her beautiful Australian shepherd or relaxing on her boat in the summer.

My Thoughts:

After reading the description for this book, I knew I had to read it. I love books with a good love story, and I’m especially a sucker for a second chance love story. So of course, I had to read Finding Libbie. To start, we meet Emily Prentice, daughter to Jack Prentice – a hard-working man whose wife (Emily’s mom) just passed away two years ago. Emily has been given the job (or rather, she volunteered) to help her Grandma Bev – the sweetest woman ever! – to clean out her house before she sells it.

While she’s doing that, Emily comes across pictures from her father’s former life – his life with his first love, and first wife, Libbie. We are then taken back in time to 1968 to learn about Jack and Libbie’s love story. Another thing I love in books is when there’s depth. This book definitely had it. A good majority of the book is set in the late 60s to early 70s. The facts seem pretty accurate (Libbie gets a job that pays $1.45 an hour), and everything seems all hunky dory for the two of them.

Until…things weren’t perfect anymore. I loved how well Deanna Lynn Sletten portrayed marriage. At first, Jack and Libbie’s marriage seemed perfect. And then…things changed. They got out of their honeymoon faze and everything seemed…different. It was real.

Jack and Libbie felt like real people. (I actually pictured them like my grandparents who were dating, married, and having children in the late sixties and early seventies). I truly appreciated how well Ms. Sletten wrote her characters. There were times I really hated Libbie; times I really adored Jack. That’s the sign of good characters – you don’t always like them but you have to know what happens next.

The good majority of the book was set in the 60-70s, which, from the description, i was surprised by this. I thought itd jump back and forth between past and present, but there was a chapter in the present and then more than 3/4 of the book was back in time.  The middle of the kind of monotonous. I felt like the same things were happening over and over throughout the years we spent during jack and Libbie’s marriage.

Once we moved back to the present, everything evened back out and things got more interesting. It was all about finding Libbie, and Emily did everything in her power to do so.

This book was so well written and well-done that I’d probably recommend this one to anyone. It’s pretty clean – with about 2 swear words throughout, and the occasional mention of two characters “making love”. No explicit language or content, I’d probably say anyone over 15 would be fine to read it.

You can find the book here



  • Deanna Lynn Sletten

    Hi Ashley,
    Thanks so much for the lovely review of Finding Libbie. It was a nice surprise to come upon this. I appreciate you sharing your thoughts about my novel with your readers.