Cover Image: A Reason for Hope

A Reason for Hope

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I have begun to enjoy stories in which animals, specifically dogs, make a difference in a person’s life. This book does this very well. There are moments that are difficult to read, i.e., a date rape. Tessa has to deal with not only the trauma of sexual assault but the emotional distress of the court case. Hope is exactly what is needed for victims of rape as she provides the support Tessa needs to fight for justice. This is an emotional story of how a furry friend can supply the unconditional love and strength to find a way through such a dark moment and guide you to a sense of hope.

Thank you to NetGalley and Kensington Publishing for my advanced review copy. All opinions and thoughts are my own.
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Comparable to Jodi Picoult, Kristin von Kreisler tackles a tough subject with A Reason for Hope. Dogs provide comfort in so many ways--for the disabled, in library reading programs, and in this case a traumatic situation. The reader's attention is held throughout the story. Well-drawn characters.

Thank you to Kensington and Net Galley for providing an ARC of this book.
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A Reason for Hope is an extraordinary book and also my first read by this author, though now I am wondering why. This is an emotional book, my emotions were all over the place with it.
Hope is an emotional support dog who comforts people when they are in court. She is very good at her job and makes people find hope again.
A young woman who is a librarian lives alone and takes care of feral cats living in the woods next to her house. . She is not afraid by herself at home having all she needs in her cats. Her previous relationship ended two years ago and she's ready for another signing up for online dating.
She hits a match with a man in her town and they have their first date, not looking for anything more than conversation that night the unthinkable happens. She sees signs of it but doesn't remember a thing.
The woman is devastated and at the urging of her friend pursues the matter through court and Hope and her trainer are there for all the way plus her support group is a phenomenal help.
We follow her ups and downs and see her go deep within herself to find courage and healing.
Excellent read! Recommended!

Pub Date 28 Dec 2021
I was given a complimentary copy of this book.
All opinions expressed are my own.
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This book is an example of why you should read the synopsis before starting a book.  This book could have been a trigger for someone who didn’t know what it was about and picked it because of the adorable dog on the cover.  That being said, this was a phenomenal read.  Kristin von Kreisler took a very tough topic and wrote about it in a way that way very realistic and moving.
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On San Julian Island, across Puget Sound from Seattle, Tessa Jordan works as a bookmobile librarian, recommending books and poems to her patrons. In her spare time, she cares for a colony of feral cats. But Tessa’s simple, satisfying life is shockingly upended after she meets Nick Payne, a respected community leader, and he invites her to dinner.
 I cannot wait to read more by this author.  This author has now become a go-to author. To have a book that is well written as well as entertaining is a delight.
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Thank you to NetGelley and Kensington Books for this ARC in exchange for my opinion.  Much appreciated.
#NetGalley #KensingtonBooks #AReasonforHope #KristinVonKreisler
Oh how I love this author.  Her books are always wonderful and uplifting.  There’s nothing like a good animal story.  This one, like the others, checks all of those boxes in addition to addressing some very serious issues.  Ms. Von Kreisler is very skilled at handling these subjects and tempering them with sweet, wonderful dogs.
Librarian Tessa enjoys her job and has a comfortable life recommending books and caring for feral cats.  When she meets Nick Payne and agrees to his dinner invitation.  The aftermath of the disastrous meeting sends her reeling and she turns to Hope, a yellow labrador.  Hope is a courthouse dog who is trained to comfort people who pass through its doors.  Hope brings not only comfort but strength in the companionship of her handler, Will.
This is both a comforting and a tough read.  The date with Nick was tough to read as was the lack of consequences for his actions.  People go through this unfortunate situation every day.  It’s very sobering.  Thank God for dogs like Hope and the people who train and handle them.  I appreciated deeply how sensitive and skillfully the subject of sexual assault was handled.  Many thanks to the author for her skills and sensitivity.
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Tessa Jordan is single, takes care of feral cats, and drives a bookmobile.  She meets a man, Nick Payne, a respected  leader in the community, online, and they meet for coffee. He invites her over to his house Saturday night to meet his brother and his wife.  When she goes, she has a glass and a half of wine and wakes up the next morning, not remembering anything.  She is naked and huts all over.  She leaves and goes home. 
The author tells her story, through all that happens after she decides to come forward and press charges against him for rape.  Will Armstrong declines to pursue her case, citing lack of evidence, and while she is in his office she meets Hope. Hope, a courthouse dog, trained to comfort victims, and she went and comforted Tessa.  Hope also gave her strength and courage, to stand up for herself, and Will decided to take the case.  
It wasn't easy going through all she had to go through and endure, but Hope was there every step of the way.  Will and Tessa became friends during this time, and when the verdict was read, Will and Tessa saw things differently.  
Tessa joined a survivor's group, and it was part of the process of making it through all that she has had to go through.  She still finds hope and strength from Hope, and wants to heal and begin to move forward, and you will need to read the book to find out if she is able to. This story has courage, strength, and might help a woman who had what happened to Tessa happen to them.  
I received an ARC from Kensington Books through NetGalley.
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I am a sucker when it comes to dogs. I live with 3 incredibly spoiled canines who seem to rule my world. If I am out and about and see a dog, my heart melts just a little bit. So it is no wonder that I tend to be drawn to books that feature dogs on the cover. If they are a part of the story, that is even better. I just couldn’t resist this book once I saw the cover. It was a heavier story than I expected from the cover but it was so worth it. I am so glad that I gave this book a try.

Tessa works as a librarian driving a bookmobile all over San Juan Island. She is single but open to a relationship so when she meets Nick Payne through a dating website, she meets him for drinks and things seem to go well. They plan to get together again for dinner at his house. She wakes up the next morning having no memory of anything that happened after drinking two glasses of wine. She soon realizes something isn’t right and goes to the police to report a sexual assault. Will is a prosecutor assigned to her case. While he believes her accusation, he isn’t sure that there is enough evidence to win at trial. Will is Hope’s primary handler. Hope is a retriever trained to provide comfort to anyone going through something traumatic at the justice center. Hope has several handlers and stays very busy trying her best to make people feel better.

This was a rather emotional novel. Tessa goes through a lot in this story and it broke my heart that she had to deal with the trauma that she did. I thought that all of the women that were a part of her support group were incredibly strong and I thought that the author did a great job of showing just how much sexual assault can impact the victims. I also thought that the trial was very well done and I could understand how traumatic it would be to pursue justice after an assault.

I would recommend this book to others. It might be a difficult read for some because of the fact that it deals with sexual assault and its aftermath. I would definitely read more of this author’s work in the future.

I received a digital review copy of this book from Kensington Books via NetGalley.
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This was a well-written book that addresses significant topics with care. It held my interest and I wanted to find out how things would turn out, though a few details were not wrapped up and I disagreed with how some topics were generalized. Overall this was a book worth reading.
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Tessa Jordan, a 36 year old librarian who's life consists mostly of driving the bookmobile, looking after 7 feral cats, and baking, is drugged and raped on her second date with a local community leader. Since she doesn't remember what happened, she doesn't step forward right away, and by the time she does too much evidence has been lost to prosecute him. There are two "reasons for Hope" in this book. The first is literal: Hope is a yellow lab service dog who helps comfort victims as they proceed through the difficult judicial system. The author's descriptions of the food-motivated Hope are great, and she is the real star of the book. The second  reason for hope is more figurative: that even after a devastating assault, one can eventually heal and move on to a full life. The plot moved well and I liked the characters. Despite the difficult subject material (which is not described in detail, for those a bit "squeamish"), it is a heartwarming and inspirational story.
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This is a beautifully written story that deals with a tough subject. It will stay in your mind long after you turn the last page. This is an emotional read that will keep you turning the pages to see what happens next.
I received a complimentary copy from Kensington Books via NetGalley and was not required to write a review. All opinions expressed are my own.
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As a lab mom for the last 25 years, I know well the wonderful personality traits of the breed.  So, of course, I had to read A Reason for Hope.  
Each dog has its own unique personality and Kreisler does a great job of showing us Hope’s.  All the sections that involved her just resonated with me.  I found it especially poignant how even dogs have their limit of how much love and understanding they can dish out in a day.  
Tessa’s sections are deeply disturbing and could be a trigger for some.  I felt so much anger against Nick I was all in for the idea of vigilante justice a la Lorena Bobbit.   It’s a hard and disturbing fact how few men are successfully prosecuted for sexual crimes.  
My thanks to Netgalley and Kensington Books for an advance copy of this book.
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A Reason for Hope
by: Kristin von Kreisler
Kensington Books, Kensington

     With a Seattle, Washington setting of San Julian Island, A Reason for Hope is a tender yet powerful story of Tessa's journey from trauma toward emotional healing. Central to the story also is a compassionate and intelligent yellow lab name Hope, a courthouse facility dog trained to support victims. Deputy Prosecutor Will is Hope's handler, and their extraordinary bond is apparent as they work together.
     The leading characters are very well developed, allowing readers to connect emotionally with them as they each navigate very difficult circumstances. Tessa is a content and dedicated mobile librarian, as well as caretaker of feral cats. Will's job in the judicial process is demanding and intense. As for Hope, her timing and methods are crucial as she offers comfort at the most critical moments of pain and fear for wounded souls. 
     Author Kristin von Kreisler's writing is straightforward and honest, as she tackles the difficult subject matter of assault. Handling it in a  most professional and compelling manner, she delivers an engaging story that is a page turner. She gives good insight into the fragile and complex feelings of victims, as well opportunities available to help them in moving toward light, life, and love again.  Hope is a most endearing dog who will stay in my heart for a long while. 
Thank you to Net Galley and Kensington Books, Kensington for the advance reader's copy and opportunity to provide my unbiased review.
 #AReasonforHope #NetGalley
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A moving look at the consequences of sexual abuse. Tessa decides to try a dating app and meets a man, who is well known in the community, for coffee. After what was supposed to be an evening with others at his home, she awakens the next morning disoriented and fearing that she had been drugged and raped. When she reports this to the police, she learns the process that rape victims go through. Hope, a trained support dog helps victims who are suffering, able to offer what can’t always be available from another person. Will Armstrong, the county prosecutor, is one of Hope’s handlers and is aware of how much her support means to victims. Working with the detective assigned to the prosecutors’ office, another victim comes forward. Will they now have enough to arrest him and proceed with the case? The range of emotions that Tessa goes through is heart wrenching, but with Hope’s constant support and empathy, she will find the strength to pursue the case to get justice for her and for all victims. I received an advance review copy at no cost and without obligation for an honest review. (by paytonpuppy)
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I’d like to thank Kensington Books and NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to read ‘A Reason For Hope’ by Kristin von Kreisler in exchange for my honest and unbiased review.

Hope is a Golden Labrador who’s been trained to be a Courthouse Facility Dog.  Her main handler, Will, is the Deputy Prosecuting Attorney and when Tessa Jordan goes to the police to report being drugged and assaulted by a well-respected member of the San Julian Island community, she’s going to need all of Hope’s love and snuggles to get her through the ordeal.   

From the book cover you can be mistaken for thinking ‘A Reason For Hope’ is a nice gentle story for dog-lovers, whereas the story is about Tessa Jordan whose life is turned upside down when she meets a man on the Northwest Singles website who thinks he can get away with drugging and assaulting her.  Of course, Hope has a prominent part in the story as she gently shows love and affection to all who need it, but the story is about a woman who with the help of her friends and the women’s group she meets, she learns to become stronger and live with the triggers that bring on her psychological pain.  This is a beautiful novel that’s been written with great empathy and has had me hooked from page one, and when I wasn’t reading I was thinking about it.  It has a strong storyline and an absolutely perfect ending and it’s one of those books that’s going to stay in my thoughts for some time to come.
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Know that the cover for this emotional novel might lead you to believe it's a light uplifting tale about a dog.  It's not- it's a serious look at the impact of assault on a woman who lived a quiet life and her quest for justice.  Tessa had no idea that Nick was the odious criminal he turned out to be or she would never have agreed to dinner. She is let down by the system when Will, the prosecutor initially declines to prosecute because he can't find usable evidence.  Hope, the courthouse dog (the one on the cover) becomes the bright spot in Tessa's life.  Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC.  This might be hard to read in spots but it's well written and the characters are stronger than they initially believe themselves to be.
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This story cannot fail to touch the hearts of anyone who reads it. Beware it will create emotions that will stay with you for a long time. Hope the courthouse dog forms an amazing bond with Tessa who has experienced a terrible traumatic event in her life that leads to them meeting and together with the help of others Tessa’s strength will grow.
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Thank you Netgalley and Kensington Books for an eARC for an honest review.

Kudos to Kristin von Kreisler for taking a difficult subject and handling this well.

Tessa Jordan (a bookmobile librarian) is drugged and raped, is embarrassed and hesitant to press charges, and at the beginning in denial of the events that take place. We are shown the emotions and difficulties that victims come to face when such events take place.

Will Armstrong, the prosecutor, takes on the case, but due to lack of evidence in Tessa's rape, is unable to take the case further until hard evidence comes up. And in this story of courage, while Tessa rages on, angry at this, we see that Will does care deeply for the survivors.

Lastly, we have adorable Hope, the lovely emotional support dog. Will, is her primary carer and has an adorable relationship with him, but the moment she has her vest on, she knows her duties and job. Hope consoles victims in their hardest and vulnerable times, giving people the comfort and warmth they need, just by simply being there.

This story is about survival and the aftermath that comes with the effort to move on, varying from the looks of people to their own emotions that they can either allow to rule them or not. 

I look forward to more books by this author.
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Domestic violence of any kind is a difficult subject. Kristin Von Kreisler handled it very well, depicting the agony and depression an assault survivor deals with after the traumatic experience of date rape. Tessa is embarrassed, having been drugged and not knowing what actually happened. Was it her fault?  Will, the prosecutor, has a personal reason to throw the book at all the evil men who take advantage of innocent women. But he has to have enough evidence to bring charges against someone, especially a high-profile member of society.  This is an excellent story revealing the struggles of the survivor and the prosecutor who wants nothing more than to put the man away for a very long time.  The author gives us insights how survivors deal with triggers, the support received through an assault survivors’ group, and the unconditional love of a therapy dog, Hope, trained to give emotional support to survivors of domestic violence. 

Even though the book deals with a difficult subject, the author brings to life the human feelings survivors deal with in an effort to move on.  And she brings a breath of fresh air with Hope’s personality! I look forward to reading more books by this author.
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This is an emotional book about a difficult subject.  Kristin Von Kreisler handled it well. Tessa, after being drugged and raped, was embarrassed and hesitant to press charges. Hope, the sweet service dog, was instrumental in helping her feel safe in moving forward and healing. This is the first book I’ve read by this author.  I look forward to checking out other titles of hers.
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