When Ellie and Nolan were kids, they put letters they had written to each other in a metal box, buried it beneath an oak tree, and vowed to return 11 years later. Now Ellie is a struggling single mom, and Nolan is an NBA star. Will their reunion heal their hearts---and restore their faith? 368 pages, softcover from Howard.
#1 New York Times bestselling author Karen Kingsbury proves it’s never too late for love in this heartwarming story about childhood friends, broken lives, and an age-old promise.
Years ago, the day before Ellie moved from Georgia to California, she and her best friend Nolan sat beneath the Spanish moss of an ancient oak tree and wrote letters to each other, sealing them in a rusty old metal box. The plan was to return eleven years later and read them in 2013, the year Nolan’s time traveling books say all the mysteries of the world will be understood.
Now, as that date approaches, much has changed. Ellie, bereft of the faith she grew up with, is a single mom living in a tired apartment and trying to make ends meet. Nolan, now an NBA star, has dealt with terrible personal tragedies that fueled his faith and athletic drive in equal measure. Ever since his father and coach succumbed to a heart attack, Nolan has suffered from a transcendent loneliness. Drowning in an ocean of grief, he often thinks about Ellie and the innocence of their childhood days together.
As Ellie and Nolan move toward the possibility of a reunion at the oak tree, Molly and Ryan, the central characters from author Karen Kingsbury’s previous novel The Bridge, return in their own ongoing story. Written by the “Queen of Christian Fiction” (Time) with eloquence and grace, The Chance is a beautiful tale of heart-wrenching loss, the power of faith, and the wounds that only love can heal.
Karen Kingsbury, #1 New York Times bestselling novelist, is Americas favorite inspirational storyteller, with more than twenty-five million copies of her award-winning books in print. Her last dozen titles have topped bestseller lists and many of her novels are under development with Hallmark Films and as major motion pictures. Her Baxter Family books are being developed into a TV series slated for major network viewing sometime in the next year. Karen is also an adjunct professor of writing at Liberty University. In 2001 she and her husband, Don, adopted three boys from Haiti, doubling their family in a matter of months. Today the couple has joined the ranks of empty nesters, living in Tennessee near five of their adult children.
"Another weeper from Christian-fiction diva Kingsbury, this time featuring a prayerful NBA star and his long-lost first love."
"In The Chance, Kingsbury (The Bridge, 2012) delivers another excellent novel filled with heart, adventure, and second chances. . . . Kingsbury is one of the most dependable names in inspirational fiction, and The Chance may be her best yet. She infuses such real emotion into her characters, readers will find themselves in tears multiple times throughout the novel. A beautiful balance of human fragility and the power of God’s grace makes this is a must-read."
"At age 15, Ellie finds her world turned upside down when her parents separate and her father moves them from Georgia to California. A devastated Ellie and her best friend, Nolan, write letters to each other and bury them beneath an oak tree. The two agree that in 11 years, no matter what surprises life brings, they will return and dig up the letters together. VERDICT Reminiscent of Nicholas Spark's The Notebook and Richard Paul Evan's The Walk, Kingsbury's (Coming Home) latest novel offers her characters forgiveness and love without an expiration date. Her many fans, and readers who like to escape their daily cares with a gentle Christian romance with elements of women's fiction, will enjoy the reappearances of Molly and Ryan, familiar characters from The Bridge, as well as a likable cast of fresh protagonists."
Kingsbury knows how to get down to business; readers start worrying from the opening sentence about 15-year-old Ellie Tucker and her family: "Her mom didn't come home for dinner, the third time that week." Family troubles prompt Ellie's abrupt move from Georgia to California, but before that happens she and her best friend Nolan write letters to one another that they bury and agree to unearth in 11 years. During that time, Ellie and Nolan naturally change, their paths diverging; he becomes an NBA star, she a single mother. Reckoning with loss and forgiveness for bad choices are required for healing. Kingsbury's themes are familiar, and her writing has benefited from a change of publisher. The action clips along, and readers root for the main characters. The fan-fic element of her writing remains— there's not only an NBA star but another celebrity affecting the action. But the author pours a fervent message about love and reconciliation into a novel that makes the lesson of hope go down much more easily than it would via sermon.