The House That Love Built
Interesting and Surprising
Once you have finished this book the title becomes totally clear to you.
Brooke Holloway, has lost the love of her life, her husband. She is raising two children, who are her salvation. She did state, that if it weren't for them, she would have thrown in the towel.
When Owen Saunders, purchases the old Hadley mansion. His path crosses with Brook, as she owns the local hardware store, and he has a lot of work to do in restoring his new house. Owen is fighting his demons, he has lost his wife, Virginia, but to another man not death. He needs to forgive his ex, but can't find his way to do so.
Brooke, is also struggling with forgiveness, her father left her family when she was a young child. He now wants back in her life, and Brook is determined not let him.
There are a few other character in this story that will warm you heart, and some you will despise for the way they have treated a child. Throughout all, we find God seems to be in control of their lives, and all they have to do is listen.
Some parts made me want to cry, they were so sweet. This is not a book to be missed, and the important word is "Family". I loved it, and wish I could continue on in their lives. There are really some interesting and very surprising things that happen here. Don't miss this!
I received this book through Litfuse Publicity Group, and was not required to give a positive review.
April 29, 2013
Solid Romance with some Christian elements
The cover picture is of a couple embracing. The title is The House that Love Built (awww, everyone sigh!). The author, Beth Wiseman, is better known for her Amish novels. So is this going to be a saccharine depiction of small-town Americana, or something more?
Brooke Holloway is a widowed mother of two children and hardware store owner in Smithville, Texas. SheÃ¢ÂÂs still in love with Travis, even though he died two years ago. Her mother, Patsy, lives in a local care home ad is hiding a secret 'boyfriend'. Meghan, Brooke's daughter, would like her to marry again but 10-year-old Spencer doesn't want anyone to replace his father--and goes out of his way to sabotage the possibility.
Owen Saunders bought the old Hadley place to remodel because his ex-wife always wanted a picture-book house in Smithville, the setting for the 1998 movie Hope Floats. HeÃ¢ÂÂs here out of spiteÃ¢ÂÂheÃ¢ÂÂs bought his ex-wifeÃ¢ÂÂs dream house, but he might regret it as he knows next-to-nothing about renovating a house. And Brooke's story of a hidden bunker in the house has him intrigued...
But this is a romance, so you know whatÃ¢ÂÂs going to happen. I thought the relationship progressed nicely and was quite believable, watching Brooke and Owen work through their various relationship issues, with God, with BrookeÃ¢ÂÂs family, and with each other. The one thing that wasnÃ¢ÂÂt quite so believable was the appearance of Virginia, the ex-wife, at the end of the story (the dates just donÃ¢ÂÂt add up, but youÃ¢ÂÂll have to read it to see what I mean). However, VirginiaÃ¢ÂÂs story would make a great sequel. Now, thereÃ¢ÂÂs a woman with issuesÃ¢ÂÂ¦
All in all, this was a solid story with a nice combination of mystery and romance, and stronger-than-usual minor characters. Despite the sweet title and cover, there were some real issues in here, and Beth Wiseman handled them well.
Thanks to Thomas Nelson and Booksneeze for providing a free ebook for review.
April 17, 2013
romance with important theme of forgiveness
Brooke is a single mom . Her husband had died in an auto accident two years before, a drunk driver ripping him away from her life. Now she's making a life for herself and her two kids, owning the hardware store in their small community.
But Brooke has trouble. Her mother has moved into a retirement home, against Brooke's wishes. And her mother has taken up with a man. Brooke makes an unannounced visit to her mom and finds her with the man Ã¢ÂÂ her estranged father! Brooke is beside herself. He had abandoned his family for another woman when Brooke was twelve. The long term bitterness against her father is flamed anew.
To add to Brooke's trouble is Owen Saunders. He bought the old house that had been empty for years Ã¢ÂÂ to spite his ex-wife. He had caught his wife and his business partner together, finding out they'd been together for a year. He sold his half of the business to his partner, had a nasty divorce, is still bitter, and wants nothing to do with women right now. Betrayal was a tough thing to get past.
Brooke is certainly not ready to date. But Owen is a nice fellow, and he does need lots of help in restoring the old home. And Brooke is lonely. Maybe they can just be friends.
An added plot twist is Hunter, a young teen living with his grandmother as his parents are in drug rehab. He's a thief, getting money to supplement his grandmother's inadequate income. He and Owen cross paths late at night, Hunter on the run. Owen feels compelled to help him.
This is a romance novel with a few twists. Girl meets boy and it looks like they are made for each other. Both girl and boy have lots of issues to work through. Will healing occur and love win out?
The theme of forgiveness is major in this novel. Brooke can't forgive her father and Owen can't forgive his ex-wife. The theme of second changes is also major. Another theme is love and this one has two love experiences juxtaposed. On the one hand is a life long love despite betrayal. On the other hand one reads of the (lack of) love a parent has for a child.
The characters are pretty well developed. I loved Brooke's children. They are a delight. The Christianity of the characters is well presented and an essential part of their lives.
I thought the romance went a little fast, considering how adamant Brooke and Owen were presented at the beginning. And with Owen, it has not been long since his divorce Ã¢ÂÂ much less than a year, we find out. I am not so sure that is appropriate and that he has had sufficient time to heal. Other then that, a fine Christian romance novel.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
April 16, 2013
Family, Faith, Forgiveness and Romance
Beth Wiseman in her new book "The House that Love Built" published by Thomas Nelson takes us into the lives of Brooke Holloway and Owen Saunders.
From the back cover: Brooke has only loved one man, her late husband. Owen's rebuilding after a painful divorce. Can a mysterious house bring them together for a second chance at love?
In the charming town of Smithville, Texas, Brooke Holloway is raising two young children on her own, supporting them by running the family hardware store. The last thing on her mind is falling in love. But she's intrigued when a stranger moves to town and buys the old Hadley mansion. She's always heard that house holds a secret--maybe even a treasure--and she can't wait to see inside. When she meets the new owner and they spend time together, she can't deny the attraction. Could God be giving her another chance at happiness? Or is she betraying her late husband's memory by even thinking that way?
Owen Saunders bought the Hadley place to spite his cheating ex-wife. She'd always wanted to restore an old house in Smithville. Now he's going to do it without her. But if anything needs restoration, it is Owen's heart. Then he meets Brooke and her kids and finds himself tempted by love. Can he bring himself to trust a woman again?
Throw an eccentric uncle into the mix, along with the town's teenage troublemaker, and even a finicky cat--and one thing becomes clear: God is bringing them all together for a reason.
Don't you just love the title? I think whoever thought of the title to this book, "The House that Love Built" should receive an award. It isn't often that a book title gives you everything that you want to know about purchasing this book, "The House that Love Built" is a wonderful motivator. And you will not be disappointed. This is a truly charming romance. This is a book about what is important in life: family, faith and forgiveness. Ms. Wiseman knows how to create characters that live on the page and that we get to know and love. Get ready for an exciting read that will keep you flipping pages and keep you emotionally involved.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
April 12, 2013