By Penelope Powell
Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance
After thirteen long years, Karen Braden returns home to inherit her grandmother’s bed and breakfast, hoping it will provide the kind of future she wants for herself and her daughter. There’s only one problem—she’ll have to face the past and the one man she’s never stopped loving: Dean Anderson.
In the years following Karen’s hasty and unexplained departure, Dean built a portfolio of auto dealerships, yet he remains unfulfilled. When he sees Karen again, his hurt resurfaces, clashing with the love he’s always had for her. Determined to find out why she left him all those years ago, Dean discovers there’s more at stake than just getting answers.
As the truth begins to unravel, Dean and Karen must decide if they can forgive past transgressions and trust God to help them forge a future, better than either could ever anticipate.
This story surprised me. Well written, with well crafted characters with so many different threads weaving together. I greatly enjoyed this story.
I loved Dean because he was so flawed. He was beat down, broken and hurt and angry, I immediately stood in his corner, willing the circumstances in his life to improve. I love characters like this, whose lives are broken and throughout the story, we see this rebuilding, this restoration both inward and outward. I love it.
I actually loved Pastor Jordan. He was such a fantastic side character. His modern parables were powerful, and thought-provoking. I highlighted a lot haha! I found him to be realistic, authentic, not a stereotypical mold of a pastor someone half-heartedly threw together. He was such a well-crafted character.
I enjoyed the multiple threads woven together. There was more than just the romantic tension between Dean and Karen. There was the obvious spiritual thread, the theme of forgiveness, how we desperately need to both give and receive forgiveness and how both are extremely difficult. There was the theme of familial relationships. The rebuilding of his relationship with his daughter and with his former best friend. I wanted to see more of Karen and her mom’s relationship. I also appreciate stories that speak to the theme of physical intimacy. It’s not often talked about and I think young adults and adults alike in dating relationships need constant reminders of the ramifications of choices gone awry.
Yes!! What a great story. with great characters, a realistic, heart-wrenching plot that isn’t fluffy or super cliche. I highly recommend this book
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