Thursday, December 27, 2012

Lonely Hearts by Amanda Stephan

Lonely HeartsOne lonely mother. Two matchmaking kids. Three eligible bachelors, and some very yummy apple pie! When widow Becky Callis moves to a new town, her intentions were to start over in a place where she's not reminded of her dead husband. Her kids, however, take it as a chance to help her start over romantically. They soon realize it's easier to find someone to like their mother than it is to figure out which man is best for her. To the delight of both kids, young and handsome cowboy Scott Boone makes his interest plain and starts courting Becky almost immediately.  

Jack Anderson and Becky have been friends since childhood. When they're reunited years after their lives have taken very different paths, this lonely preacher begins to wonder if God has brought her back into his life for a reason.  Pearce Morgan is a single parent raising his young daughter. Divorced and disillusioned, an unlikely friendship arises between him and Becky when his shy daughter decides she loves Becky and her kids. Lonely Hearts, is a heartwarming story of second chances and choices, and includes an exclusive apple pie recipe!




Excerpt:


Becky Callis was new in town, and she felt her intrusion.


A bearded man outside the hardware store stopped sweeping, broom held in mid-air and watched them narrowly as they drove past, perhaps wondering if she were the type to plunder and loot his shop.

A couple of older women that had been chatting outside a tiny florist shop suddenly turned to stone, their mouths gaping open, snickering about what kind of woman would be caught dead in such an old pick-up truck. Becky even imagined one of their tongues hung out. She repressed a giggle and waved, receiving an incredulous half-wave from one of the women, and no acknowledgement from the others.

She hated being stared at, and tried to keep a somewhat pleasant smile pasted on her freckled face as she drove through. She could feel her fair skin literally burning with embarrassment. Her thirteen year old daughter, Jen, gave her a twisted frown.

"Mom, what is wrong with these people?" Her pixie face turned dark red as a teenage boy waved at her. "They act like they've never seen strangers before."

Becky's grin grew larger and more realistic as she gave a two-finger salute to the policeman leaning on his squad car with arms crossed as if daring her to go faster than the posted thirty mile an hour sign. Obediently, she stopped at the one red light the town could boast of and waited for it to turn green.

"I guess," she said with a shrug, watching an old man sitting outside a diner pretend to read a newspaper. He spit tobacco juice into a jar and set it down next to his chair, his bushy eyebrows making it very clear he was looking at them."They don't get too many newcomers here." Jen grimaced and pushed her sleeping brother's head off her shoulder onto the vinyl headrest instead.

"Well that's fine, but they don't have to stare. Makes me feel like we're pets in a pet shop."

"Or beef at a cattle auction." Becky laughed at her discomfort, noticing that the green light flickered faintly before going completely out.


Amanda Stephan

Image of Amanda StephanAward winning, bestselling Christian author Amanda Stephan is just a normal, everyday country girl. Amanda resides in Middle Tennessee with her husband and children, who closely resemble several of the seven dwarfs, (Sleepy, Sneezy, Grumpy/Happy), three cats, (only because hubby refuses to get one of his own) one dog, and multiple roosters that love to roost under their bedroom windows.

Amanda loves to laugh and have a good time, and loves to read a good book. She finds writing to be an opportunity to share God's love for others in a fun and entertaining way. Her first novel, The Price of Trust, was published in May of 2010, her second novel, Lonely Hearts was released at the end of October, 2011, and she is currently working on a Christian paranormal entitled The Haunting of Maddie Branson as well as a three book family saga series.

Connect with Amanda here:

Facebook author page http://www.facebook.com/creativehomemomma

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/amandastephan

her website http://www.booksbyamanda.com or http://www.thepriceoftrust.com

My Review

Not having read a "Christian" romance before, I wasn't sure what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised with the wonderfully innocent love story that unfolded between the pages. The story was far from mundane due to a young confident, but impressionable young man whose anger at rejection was all too real, as well as an older, grandfatherly character who was an anchor to the story.

"And I think she likes him too. Well, now who do we pick for her? Jack, Scott, or Pearce? I didn't know it could be so complicated!"

"That's one thing I hated when I got into trouble. My mom was always so creataive in finding work for me to do. Weeding was the worst. What'd he do?" "He was misbehaving in school. Not listening. Giving an attitude. Sassing. You name it, he was doing it."..."Sometimes it's hard to fit into a new school. He was probably just trying to impress the other kids." "You know, I'd agree with you if he went to a pubic school, but he's homeschooled." If there were was a limit on how many times a person could be shocked in one afternoon, Scott was well on his way...His drawn out "Oh," told her...

The book was an easy read, reminiscent of a soft, afternoon breeze; the characters charming and human, along with a setting of a beautiful little town. There was just enough suspense thrown in to keep you on your toes. 

"...Most people would have turned their back on God." She picked up the picture and stared at the heartless woman who hid behind a beautiful face. "But why do you keep Eva's picture?" "To remind me that sin can look beautiful on the outside, but it's as rotten as a dead horse on the inside," he smiled at her, his eyes dark with pain and remorse. "I look at it everyday to remind me to seek God's will and guidance in my life before I make another huge mistake."

The writing was great, and I found the story to have a nice solid ending. The book reminded me a little of Little House on the Prairie, not the time frame, but the way it makes your heart feel - and that is important in a story of this nature. I definitely recommend the book to those of you who enjoy a soft, easy read with romance and faith thrown in.

"Dear Lord," she began to pray, sitting down dejectedly at the table. "I've gone and made a mess of things again. There were so many things I was hoping for, that I forgot to ask your will to be done. Please forgive me, and lead me in a plain path. I beg for your peace and comfort in this whole situation. Let me know what you would have me do. In Jesus' name, amen." She sat still for a few minutes, letting the peace that passes all understanding take hold of her and reassure her.


If you found my review helpful, please consider taking a moment and voting "yes" on my review on Amazon. (Follow the link below.) Thanks!!

http://www.amazon.com/review/R3QUO6OY8SDR8/ref=cm_cr_pr_perm?ie=UTF8&ASIN=B007W4SZEK&linkCode=&nodeID=&tag=



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