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Multnomah Publishers, Inc. / 2007 / Paperback
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CBD Stock No: WW529287
Once upon a time, I was a rebel. And I have the tattoo to prove it.Then there was the spiked hair-the shade of which changed monthly-"colorful" language that can't be found in your everyday sixteen-count crayon box, a pack-a-day habit, less-than-modest wardrobe, and an obsession with guitar-trashing, drum-bashing music.Did I mention I'm also a preacher's kid? That's right. And like the prodigal son after whom I modeled myself, I finally saw the error of my ways and returned to the fold.
Once upon a time, I was a rebel. And I have the tattoo to prove it.
Then there was the spiked hair–the shade of which changed monthly–“colorful” language that can’t be found in your everyday sixteen-count crayon box, a pack-a-day habit, less-than-modest wardrobe, and an obsession with guitar-trashing, drum-bashing music.
Did I mention I’m also a preacher’s kid? That’s right. And like the prodigal son after whom I modeled myself, I finally saw the error of my ways and returned to the fold.
Today my life is all about “lead me not into temptation.” When I’m not serving as Women’s Ministry Director at my father’s church, I’m working at Gloria’s Morning Café. I even have worthy goals, like saving enough money to buy the café, keep my Jelly Belly habit under control, and to never again hurt the people I love. No more parties. No more unsavory activities. And no more motorcycles! You’d think I was finally on the right track.
But since my dad’s replacement hired a hotshot church consultant to revive our “dying” church, things aren’t working out as planned. And now this “consultant” says I’m in need of a little reviving myself. Just who does this Maddox McCray think he is anyway? With his curly hair that could use a good clipping, tattoo that he makes no attempt to hide, and black leather pants, the man is downright dangerous. In fact, all that’s missing is a motorcycle. Or so I thought… But if he thinks he’s going to take me for a ride on that 1298cc machine of his, he can think again. Harriet Bisset is a reformed woman, and she’s going to stay that way. Even if it kills me!
Tamara Leigh is the bestselling author of Perfecting Kate and Stealing Adda. Her first seven novels earned awards and became national bestsellers, but Tamara was dissatisfied that the stories were not God-honoring. In 2003 she determined to write books that more directly represented her faith. Tamara and her husband, David, live with their two young sons in Tennessee.
In Splitting Harriet, Tamara Leigh details a story of community, sacrifice, redemption, and the ability to accept forgiveness.
Harriet watches helplessly as the church she has been a part of most of her life undergoes what she considers disasterous changes. She would not consider those changes to be quite as bad, though, if they were not such a strong reminder of the situation that sparked her past rebellion, and if Maddox, the charming church consultant and the man behind the changes wasnt intent on changing her as well. A reformed rebel, Harriet is determined to avoid any temptation that presents itself to her, and Maddox happens to be one of those temptations.
As a reformed rebel himself, Maddox understands Harriet more than any of the other characters in the book. What he does not understand is why she persists in surrounding herself with people much older than she is and why she keeps pushing him off to a safe distance.
As she is struggling to deal with Maddox, Harriet is also trying to help Anna before it is too late. Anna, the newly arrived preachers young daughter, is about to travel down the same path Harriet took when church conflict started affecting her family. At the same time, Harriet is trying to mend the relationship with her brother that she severed during her rebellion.
Each of the characters is flawed but likable. Harriet is especially likable with her addiction to jelly bellys and The Coroner. Her ability to pull ridiculous stunts and, in turn, to place herself in comical situations further endear her to the readers heart.
Splitting Harriet is amusing and romantic. I would recommend it to a Christian woman of any age. -- Christa Mullen, www,ChristianBookPreviews.com
Romance author Leigh (Stealing Adda) mixes chick lit with a treatise on the need for change in traditional churches in her latest. Former wild child Harriet Bisset, 27, tries to keep to the straight and narrow. Between living in a senior citizens trailer park, her part-time job as a womens ministry director at First Grace in Franklin, Tenn., and waitressing at Glorias Morning Cafe (which shes saving to buy), she doesnt have time to get into trouble. But when the church hires hunky 30-something Maddox McCray, a former bad boy, as a consultant to help attract new members (translation: bring in the guitars, drum sets and programming), Harriet grapples with her own fears about risk and change. Some readers will disagree with Maddoxs breezy assertion that todays Christians have different needs from past generations and that programming and contemporary music are the answer, especially when interest from young people in more liturgical traditions is on the upswing. Church marketing themes aside, Leigh crafts the expected romance, with all the tensions and tingles, adding splashes of fun with Harriets Jelly Belly addiction and cat-sitting dramas. The novels elderly characters sparkle, and readers will hoot when one old biddy takes out a no-good amorous lecher with a stun gun. (Nov.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
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