CORNERSTONE is the story of Nalena Maxwell, a girl who’s been dubbed The Waste at her new school, due to her mom’s obsessive paper hoarding. Nalena receives a sign that invites her into an ancient community. Everything changes- what she knew of her family and her life and her future. While seventeen years worth of family skeletons come crashing into Nalena’s life, it is the boy – the one with eyes as clean as Jesus that steps up to help Nalena figure out what he already knows about her.
I was hooked by Provencher’s engaging writing style and intrigued with Nalena’s unusual life with her hoarding Mom. I felt I could relate personally with Nalena which made her character believable. Tantalizing twists throughout kept me reading, I wanted to know what was going to happen and why.
I’m not particularly interested in the teenage romance aspect, although I would have loved it when I was a teen, now I don’t find it interesting. The novel was heavily focused on the romantic life of Nalena and I find it dissatisfying for the romantic interest to be perfect, but I understanding that this is appealing to teenaged readers.
I don’t fully understand the finer details of the plot concerning the ancient community and the antagonists, but that might just have been something I missed, or may yet be revealed in the rest of the trilogy. Personally I prefer more conflict and action throughout books whereas Cornerstone felt a little more slower paced and the climax seemed short lived.
As an independent author, Provencher has brought a very high standard of writing and editing to her novel. Cornerstone is certainly on par with traditionally published books. I know a lot of people who love Cornerstone and it is a books that teenage readers would also love. I think Provencher is a noteworthy writer and should be celebrated as an ambassador for independent authors. I look forward to seeing where her writing career takes her.