There are good Christian romance novels and then there are very good Christian romance novels. This is a very, very good one.
Hauck has given us a delightful novel about love and hurts and forgiveness and reconciliation. The main characters are part of an extended family. Taylor and Jack are the young New York couple. They were so madly in love six months ago they eloped. Now reality has set in. Jack's career is on the rise and he is struggling. A coolness has developed between him and Taylor. Does he put his energy into his career or his marriage?
Taylor is a photographer trying to get her career going. She is given the opportunity to go back to her home town and do an architectural shoot. It's an opportunity she cannot pass up. But that means she'd have to see her dad, the man whom she's been mad at all these years for ruining her parent's marriage.
The shoot Taylor is to do is of a wedding chapel. It had been built over six decades ago by a young man in love. It was to be their own wedding chapel. But he had been called to serve in the military and she had not waited. She had left him for a career in New York. Now in his mid-eighties, he's ready to sell the chapel and finally let go of his dream and the one he has continued to love.
Hauck has woven these two love stories together so well it is breath taking. The plot is a bit complex but clear. There had been deception and lies all those decades ago and one wonders if all will ever come to the light so true love can win out. Taylor and Jack are right in the middle of it. While they see what is happening in their extended families, they must come to grips with a change in their relationship that could split them apart or make them ever closer.
I really like how Hauck has developed this intertwining story. As characters think of events in the past we are treated to flash backs. The relationship histories are developed slowly yet perfectly. I don't get emotionally involved in novels often but the way this one was crafted really tugged at my heart.
This novel is an excellent example of showing what lies do to a family. It reveals the scars left on a young boy by a despicable father. It counters with the reality of the true love an adoptive father can have. It points out the deep hurts that can result from misunderstandings. And, in the end, it shows what returning to the Father can mean for reconciliation and restoration.
I highly recommend this novel to readers who love a well crafted, intense, heart tugging novel. This is a really, really good one. There is an excellent set of Discussion Questions to help readers contemplate the themes of communication, misunderstandings, hurts, forgiveness, and much more.
I am taking part in a blog tour of this book and you can read other reviews here.
My rating: 5/5 stars.
Rachel Hauck is an award winning, USA Today best selling author. She is a RITA and Christy Award finalist. She and her husband live in central Florida. You can find out more at http://www.rachelhauck.com/.
Zondervan, 376 pages. You can purchase a copy here.
I received a complimentary copy of this book through Litfuse for the purpose of an independent and honest review.