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After an injury permanently sidelines NFL player Colton Greene, he is temporarily hiding out in a friend's small town to avoid the media and reminders of the betrayal that led to his career's end. Maple Valley is conveniently also the perfect place to prove to his former girlfriend that he's ready to settle down and lead a normal life. The only trouble is that he's never really done normal before and has no idea where to start.
Number of Pages: 352
Vendor: Bethany House
Publication Date: 2015
|Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)|
Series: Walker Family
Kate Walker used to believe in true love and happily ever after. While her own love life may have left her brokenhearted, it hasn't kept her from churning out made-for-TV romance movie screenplays...until a major career slump and a longing to do something meaningful send her running back to her hometown of Maple Valley.
Permanently sidelined by an injury, former NFL quarterback Colton Greene is temporarily hiding out in a friend's hometown to avoid the media and the reminders of all he's lost. Maple Valley seems like the perfect place to learn how to adjust to normal life. The only trouble is he's never really done normal before.
While Kate plays things safe and Colton is all about big risks and grand gestures, they both get what it's like to desperately need direction in life. An unexpected project gives them both a chance to jumpstart their new lives, but old wounds and new dreams are hard to ignore. Starting over wasn't part of the plan, but could it be the best thing that's ever happened to them?
"From the Start embodies Tagg's best! Delightful. Endearing. And full of engaging characters and tingling moments reminiscent of our favorite films and stories. I'm thrilled this is the beginning of our journey with the Walkers and eagerly anticipate this wonderful family's next chapter."--Katherine Reay, author of Lizzy & Jane
"With her usual dose of girl-next-door charm, Melissa Tagg invites the reader into yet another witty and faith-filled story in From the Start. Though written with punchy dialogue and a colorful cast of supporting characters, Tagg isn't afraid to expand the lighthearted parts of the story to delve into some of life's tougher challenges--which she does in an authentic way. The first in a new series, I'm eagerly awaiting the next chapter from the Walker clan!"--Kristy Cambron, author of The Butterfly and the Violin and A Sparrow in Terezin
"Melissa Tagg's newest book, From the Start, is guaranteed to win the heart of readers with this delightful story of a retired football player looking for his future, and a writer trying to figure out how to pen his story--while rewriting her own. Colton is downright swoon-worthy, and this first book in this hometown series about the charming town of Maple Valley, Iowa, scores a resounding touchdown! Tagg just gets better and better."--Susan May Warren, bestselling, RITA award-winning author of The Wonder of You
kingsdaughter1611ILAge: 25-34Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Another Page Turner That Will Keep You UP!October 15, 2016kingsdaughter1611ILAge: 25-34Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Wow! Melissa Tagg has done it yet again. I read my first novel from her last year and I literally fell in love with it. Here To Stay was just marvelous. She is an author who knows how to write stories that are realistic but have just a slight touch of fantasy to them. And this one has made my top five list for the year.
The heroine is a girl who has been hurt by love in the past. Kate Walker feels like there is nothing more for her in that department. And while she makes films about romance, she just needs a break in her hometown of Maple Valley. I just love the name! I imagine a quaint area like Gatlinburg TN, full of fall leaves and little shops down main street. Colton Greene is the hero, though he doesn't feel like one at the moment. The characters have their up and down moments, keeping true to real life stories. I would suggest keeping your tissues available ;) I really felt like the author was trying to get across the point that sometimes it takes letting go of everything, being totally at the mercy of God, before He steps in to take over. It really got me to thinking about my life and how much I allow Him to control and how much I want to hang on for dear life to the reins. Again, an amazing book that kept me up late to finish :)
*Disclosure* I received a copy of this book from Book Fun Network. I was not required to leave a positive review and all thoughts are 100% mine.
nkwbookreviewer4 Stars Out Of 5From the StartAugust 28, 2016nkwbookreviewerQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4"From the Start" by author Melissa Tagg is Book One in her new series entitled the Walker Family. The 350ish page paperback has a playful, fun cover with a happy, smiling couple on it. This delightful tale is set in Maple Valley, a small town in Iowa. It is the story of Colton Greene, former NFL quarterback and Kate Walker, screenplay writer. After a devastating tornado both Colton and Kate end up in Maple Valley to help. Maple Valley is her hometown and his college friend's family lives there, and so the two of them are in the right place at the right time. As the story develops they are thrown together even more. It gives them an opportunity to dig deeper and really know each other.
The author has a nice way of telling a story. Her descriptions are not overly long and boring but enough to take readers to a pleasant little town. Her characters are well developed and realistic with their own problems. It was easy to feel like I made some new friends. The plot flows well as does the dialogue. She deals with real life issues and conflicts making this more than a light read. It has an inspirational message to it. Actually more than just one.
This was a good book that I would recommend to anyone. I rated it 4 out of 5 stars. A copy was provided by The Book Club Network for my honest review.
loriwellerLancaster,PaAge: 55-65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5From the StartFebruary 11, 2016loriwellerLancaster,PaAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5From the Start is a fun and easy read. The story line is not hard to follow and the setting is well described. It is easy to relate to the characters.Once started, it is hard to put the book down. I look forward to reading more of Melissa Tagg's works.
I received the book from the Book Club Network in exchange for my honest opinion.
LalaAge: 18-24Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5Love The Football Talk!October 28, 2015LalaAge: 18-24Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4When I first heard about Melissa Tagg releasing a book about a former NFL quarterback, I automatically jumped on it! The past few years I have come to love football and having a main hero that is a past quarterback sounded too intriguing to past up.
I was not disappointed!
I loved Colton! I thoroughly enjoyed his conversations when they involved football talk, even if I didnt get all of it since I dont actually play the sport. He was a great character to say the least and I loved watching him grow and change, especially when it came to Kate Walker.
Speaking of Kateshe was a fun character and I loved her quirkiness as well as her willingness to help others. It was interesting to read about a writer (another first for me). I related to her in wanting to do something important, and even learned a fun cooking tip when it came to French toast (not going to say what it is, but I seriously want to try what she made!).
Overall, this was a great story! I felt it was a little long and didnt quite meet my expectations of a fast-paced ending, but it is one that has beautiful truth and fun characters all around. More than once did I have a good laugh due to Colton and Kate doing or talking about something!
I recommend FROM THE START to romance readers who are looking for a fun read about the importance of home, family, and pursuing the eleven inches (dreams) God has for us.
*(I received this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts expressed are my own and I was not required to write a positive review.)*
KavRCanadaGender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Captivating readSeptember 2, 2015KavRCanadaGender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5What a captivating read! And I'm so excited that this is the first novel in the Walker Family series and even more excited because there are a goodly number of siblings crying out for their stories to be told. From the Start puts me in mind of Denise Hunter's McKinley series and Susan May Warren's Christiansen family so if you are a fan of those authors you're going to love Melissa Tagg as well.
This is the kind of read you can all too easily lose yourself in. By the end I felt like an honorary Maple Valley citizen and member of the Walker family. Have to admit it was kind of a shock to 'wake up' to my solitary life in a big city. I'm feeling rather homesick right now and that's because Tagg has created a community with such vivid detail that it feels...well, real! And I'm pretty sure the Walker clan is too.
I adore this large and opinionated family. Love the sibling rivalry -- all the friendly digs, relentless teasing and the way they rally around each other at the least sign of trouble. Everyone should grow up in a family like that.
But Colton didn't. Sometimes he feels like he's on the outside looking in -- even when the Walkers pull him into their midst. A past cluttered with grief and sorrow has caused him to retreat behind a protective wall. He only lets people so close...until the Walkers, and Kate in particular, smash those bricks to smithereens.
Tagg tells his story with compassion and humour. She has a unique style -- part sarcastic wit/part exquisite prose. She really has an incredible way with words. They paint images that add depth to the story. Like this: He started up the porch steps, trying to ignore the awkward tension that'd dropped like precipitation, despite a cloudless sky. (p.142)
I especially appreciated the solid inspirational thread that takes root in so many ways. There's a wonderful football analogy about waiting for God's direction that even this football flunky could not only comprehend but apply in my own life.
And by the end, I felt like I'd lived Colton and Kate's story, rather than merely reading about them. Now that it's over, I'm in mourning -- always the sign of a truly great book. And this one definitely is.