I will admit that I was a little nervous to begin reading Winter in Full Bloom because I knew that the main character was a widow, entering a new stage of life. Lily's only daughter has gone off to college and she is feeling a little lonely with her "empty nest". I was afraid that I would be very sad about Lily's husband's death and her loneliness. However, I discovered that the book really is not about those feelings in that way. It is so very good and packed with so much!
When the book begins, Lily has been a widow for a year and her daughter is in college. Lily attempts to reconcile with her very strange and angry mother. During this reconciliation attempt, Lily discovers some information that instantly changes her life. She hops a plane for Australia.
In this story, Lily must overcome some big fears and face the doubts about herself that she carries around. Her time in Australia uncovers even more about her family that she did not know and opens up many new questions and possibilities for her life. It also introduces a possible love interest into Lily's life. But, this man has family problems and issues of his own. I loved watching the relationship develop between the hero and heroine of the book. Watching them attempt to overcome their pasts while trying to establish a relationship was heartwarming. The side characters in the story were also very well-developed and had problems to overcome as well. There were so many interesting turns that this book took, and each one gave me an even greater insight into the minds of these characters. I truly enjoyed this lovely story of redemption.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review, which I have given. All opinions expressed are my own.
Winter in Full Bloom is a well written Christian romance filled with interesting characters, settings, and family issues. It is a sweet story that shows God working in lives and relationships; the importance of faith and forgiveness; and the ability of people to offer others second chances.
It is inspirational fiction and I would recommend this book for readers looking for characters with faith and problems that require introspection and prayer. Thank you, Anita Higman for your writing.
I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
I am not one for contemporary romances. However, on occasion I read one that truly takes me by surprise. I was absolutely mesmerized by this book from page one, and I can only hope that this is not the last I will read of these amazing characters! Anita Higman is a masterful storyteller, and she fearlessly goes where many Christian authors may fear to tread. She deals with atheism, loss of faith, and dysfunctional families. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have lived almost half of your life and discover that you had an identical twin? Read her book, and discover the mystery! This book never seems to be preachy. God and faith are naturally woven into the fabric of the tale. I believe that although this is a "typical" romance, you can rest assured that the situations that are encountered within the story seem realistic. I believe that everyone can identify with doubt and fear. In fact, I believe that each reader will probably see himself or herself within one of the characters. I probably most identify with Lily since I am a single parent who is nearly forty. Surely, my story is different--vastly different--but there are elements of her life that truly resonate. And, the fact that the main characters seem to identify with music and writing, I feel like I am right at home. Although I never found myself in true tears, it does not mean that my emotions were not steered. The ending is gorgeous and bittersweet, and I found myself tingling all over more than once throughout the story. I was never bored, and I believe that this book will be on my mind for some time. I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not financially compensated, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.
Lily Winter's wings are folded so tightly around her daughter that when empty nest arrives, she feels she can no longer fly. But Lily's lonely, widowed life changes in a heartbeat when she goes to visit a woman who is almost a stranger to her-a woman who also happens to be her mother. During their fiery reunion, her mother reveals a dark family secret that she'd been hiding for decades-Lily has an identical twin sister who was put up for adoption when they were just babies.
Without looking back, Lily-with her fear of flying-boards a jumbo jet and embarks on a quest to find her sister which leads half way around the world to Melbourne, Australia. Befriended by an imprudent Aussie, he might prove to be the key to finding her sister. But her journey becomes a circle that leads her back home to attempt a family reunion and to find the one dream she no longer imagined possible-the chance to fall in love again.
There is something wrong with all the people in this story, and for that, we the readers, thank Higman from the bottom of our hearts. I've read some stories where the characters had past hurts, past sins to hide, and things they were still dealing with that affects them at the time of the story. A little baggage is necessary for dramatic stories, and for setting a backdrop to the tale.
But this novel just blew me away with the family drama and terrible pasts. While a little bit of not-so-great past is what makes novels great, Winter In Full Bloom just takes the prize on messed up families and damaged relationships. I couldn't believe that people so damaged can even function, much less forge new friendships and renew family alliances.
There is something wrong with each of the characters - desperately wrong. I wanted to fix them all, but I was helpless to help them as I watched them traverse the waters of new life. So many times I wanted to shake them and demand that they look to the One who could heal them of their pain, but I am not so good at that myself. I related to so many themes in this book, and despite the ugliness of life, there was also healing from the God who watches over us no matter where we walk. A somewhat depressing and dark novel, but one of those books you just can't put down.
This book was provided by the publisher for free in exchange for an honest review.
Has a conversation ever left you so bewildered by the information you are given, that you are determined to dig deeper for answers, no matter what? Lily found herself in that very state of mind. A conversation with her mother sends her on her plight across the world for those answers.
Soon after arriving in Australia, Lily develops a unique friendship with a peculiar, yet handsome man who may be able to help her on her quest. Is she willing to bare the details of her dysfunctional family to a stranger in the hopes that Marcus is more than a man looking for a date? Together, Marcus and Lily begin their search for information that may lead them to even more than the answers that Lily is so desperately looking for.
When an unexpected romantic relationship develops, Lily finds herself having to choose between returning home in hopes of reconciliation with her mother and staying in Australia and taking another chance at love.
Winter in Full Bloom is a beautiful story filled with an element of surprise at every corner. It is an enjoyable read that teaches so much about love, forgiveness, healing, faith, and new beginnings. The details within the story were written to paint a vivid picture.
Anita Higman takes you on a journey around the world to show that sometimes the very thing you want the most is worth waiting for. "Wait" is sometimes the answer God gives to our deepest desire. The message that "God makes all things beautiful in His time" (Ecclesiastes 3:11) rings clear throughout the book.
A copy of this book was provided to me by bookfun.org in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed within this review are strictly my own, and no other compensation has been given.