Contemporary Fiction Book Review: Being Known

About the Book

Title: Being Known: A Novel
Series: Haven Makers (Book 2)
Author: Robin Jones Gunn
Publisher: Multnomah
Release Date: April 28, 2020

Click here to purchase a copy of this book for yourself.

Publisher's Description

"From the bestselling author of Becoming Us comes a novel that asks: What does it mean to be truly known? In a marriage, in a friendship, or by a loving God?

After her mom passed away, Jennalyn was in the midst of moving, adjusting to life with a new baby, and helping her husband, Joel, work toward his dream job. At the time, she thought she’d processed her mother’s death, but only now that Jennalyn has two small children, a lovely new home, and a husband who is always working does she feel the full impact of what she has lost.

Even among her sweet circle of friends, the Haven Makers, grief silently overwhelms Jennalyn, until an unexpected encounter allows her to express herself in ways she hasn’t fully been able to with her husband. Even though Christy, Sierra, Emily, and Tess provide a soft place to land in times of tension, Jennalyn remains guarded, especially when Tess reveals she is tangled emotionally in a relationship that was thorny from the start.

Will the two women open up and remain honest with the others in their Haven Makers group? Or will their hesitation to truly be known, faults and all, keep them from holding on to the friendships that have been the sweetest gift during this season of life?"

My Review

Being Known: A Novel, by Robin Jones Gunn, is the second book in the Haven Makers series. It is an engaging novel of friendship, truth, vulnerability, and faith. This book explores the dreams, doubts, and motivations of a group of young women whose friendship with each other is an important source of support and encouragement as they pursue wholeness in their roles as friends, wives, mothers, and professionals. Though they have all faced various trials, they press on despite fears and uncertainties as they help each other find the strength to overcome grief, temptations, and insecurities so that they can pursue lives that are filled with faithfulness, authenticity, and gratitude. 

The characters in this novel are truly interesting and deeply sympathetic. Their choices and struggles are believable and resonate with honesty, veracity, and emotion. As they contemplate their choices and persevere through the consequences that follow, they grow in wisdom and confidence. Their faith is also nurtured as they learn to trust in love, grace, and forgiveness. 

It is truly uplifting to read about characters who bravely pursue wholeness in the aftermath of grief and disappointment, giving space for their hardships to grow in them a generosity, a wisdom, and a faith that inspires others. It is refreshing to read a novel that thoughtfully explores the power of friendship to nurture hope and healing. The themes of being seen, being heard, being appreciated, and being valued resonate on every page of this book making it genuinely touching and moving. Beyond mere entertainment, this story is very compelling as it considers the value of meaningful friendships and the powerful impact that is possible when lives are lived with faith and honesty and in community with others.

Ms. Gunn has skillfully crafted a story that is emotionally impactful and endearing. Being Known: A Novel is a special book that is memorable and relevant. It is a pleasure to recommend it.

*I was given a copy of this book by the publisher. A review was not required. The review I have written is voluntary and contains opinions that are entirely my own.

About the Author: Robin Jones Gunn

"Robin Jones Gunn has written over 100 books with sales of over 6 million copies sold worldwide. She and her husband have two grown children and live in Hawai'i.

Her best-selling Father Christmas novels have been made into 3 Hallmark Movies. Get a behind the scenes look in her book, "How My Book Became a Movie".

Robin's best-selling, award winning novels include the Christy Miller series for teens as well as the Sierra Jensen and Katie Weldon series. The characters in these series continue in Christy & Todd: The College Years, The Married Years, The Baby Years and in The Haven Makers series. More details at

The Glenbrooke series by Robin features 8 gentle love stories and her Christy Award winning Sisterchicks(R) novels are a book club favorite. Her popular non-fiction titles include "Victim of Grace", "Praying For Your Future Husband", co-authored with Tricia Goyer and "Spoken For", co-authored with Alyssa Joy Bethke." –Biography from Robin Jones Gunn's author page on

Click here to visit Robin Jones Gunn's website.


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