Published by Tyndale House Publishers on February 1, 2021
Genres: Fiction / Christian / Contemporary, Fiction / Family Life / Marriage & Divorce, Fiction / Women
Baker Book House|Amazon|ChristianBook
"Pearson delivers a poignant debut that explores the faith of one African American family. . . . The writing is strong, and the story is engaging, and readers will be pleased to discover a new voice in Southern inspirational fiction." --Booklist
When the man she loved years ago returns to town, one young woman's complicated past rises again, threatening to expose her well-kept secrets.
If Maxine could put her finger on the moment when her life went into a tailspin, she would point back twenty years to the day her daddy died. She tells herself he's the only person who ever really knew and loved her, and if he hadn't left her behind, her future would've taken a different path. No absentee mother, no stepfather, no rebellious ripping and running during her teenage years. And no JD, who gave her wandering young heart a home, at least for a time.
But that's over and done with. All grown-up now, Maxine has pledged her heart and ring finger to Theodore Charles, the man she'll promise to love, honor, and obey in front of God and everybody. At least that's what she's telling anybody who will listen. The only folks buying it are the dog and the readers of her column, however. Her best friend and family aren't having it--not even Celeste, the double bass-playing thirteen-year-old the community of Mount Laurel, North Carolina, believes is Maxine's adopted sister. And apparently, neither is the newly returned JD, who seems intent on toppling Maxine's reconstructed life. As her wedding day marches ever closer, Maxine confronts what it means to be really known and loved by examining what's buried in her own heart and exposing truth that has never seen the light of day.
A Christian fiction novel with a poignant story of romance, a search for truth, and a journey to redemption. For fans of Chris Fabry, Lauren Denton, and Charles Martin.
There were many aspects to this read that I truly enjoyed. The summary intrigued me enough that it’s one I preordered, though crazy life delayed my chances to dig in. Even though Maxine was engaged to Teddy, it wasn’t hard at all to see who really had her heart, and as a reader you feel it yourself. JD was just an easier character to like and I found more than for anyone I was rooting for his happiness. I also felt protective of Celeste, hoping that however things panned out that she didn’t get crushed in the process. But while I enjoyed the story itself, I have to admit that the pace was a struggle. I was invested because I wanted to know how things turned out, but the content didn’t always keep the plot moving forward and the narrative distance made it more difficult to get inside the head of the characters. I think if the narrative distance was shortened in the POV it would have been a much better read, but I still liked it overall and am glad I took the time to read it.
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