The Art of Losing Yourself
by Katie Ganshert
Every morning, Carmen Hart pastes on her made-for-TV smile and broadcasts the weather. She’s the Florida panhandle’s favorite meteorologist, married to everyone’s favorite high school football coach. They’re the perfect-looking couple, live in a nice house, and attend church on Sundays. From the outside, she’s a woman who has it all together. But on the inside, Carmen Hart struggles with doubt. She wonders if she made a mistake when she married her husband. She wonders if God is as powerful as she once believed. Sometimes she wonders if He exists at all. After years of secret losses and empty arms, she’s not so sure anymore.
Until Carmen’s sister–seventeen year old runaway, Gracie Fisher–steps in and changes everything. Gracie is caught squatting at a boarded-up motel that belongs to Carmen’s aunt, and their mother is off on another one of her benders, which means Carmen has no other option but to take Gracie in. Is it possible for God to use a broken teenager and an abandoned motel to bring a woman’s faith and marriage back to life? Can two half-sisters make each other whole?
****Another deeply moving and captivating book by Katie Ganshert. I loved walking through the tough parts of life with these characters–feeling what they felt and trying to figure out how they would overcome. Raw faith, asking the hard questions, digging deep…this is what Ganshert does well. This book will move you to tears and may help you reach out to others in your life who are hurting. I highly recommend this book. –Bethany******
The Nesting Place:
It Doesn’t have to be Perfect to Be Beautiful
by Myquillyn Smith
Perfection is overrated.
Popular blogger and self-taught decorator Myquillyn Smith (The Nester) is all about embracing reality especially when it comes to decorating a home bursting with boys, pets, and all the unpredictable messes of life.
In The Nesting Place, Myquillyn shares the secrets of decorating for real people and it has nothing to do with creating a flawless look to wow your guests. It has everything to do with embracing the natural imperfection and chaos of daily living.
Drawing on her years of experience creating beauty in her 13 different homes, Myquillyn will show you how to think differently about the true purpose of your home and simply and creatively tailor it to reflect you and your unique style without breaking the bank or stressing over comparisons. Full of easy tips, simple steps, and practical advice, The Nesting Place will give you the courage to take risks with your home and transform it into a place that’s inviting and warm for family and friends.
There is beauty in the lived-in and loved-on and just-about-used-up, Myquillyn says, and welcoming that imperfection wholeheartedly just might be the most freeing thing you’ll ever do.”
*** The author does a great job at getting you to think about the purpose of your house. She also encourages you to take risks and do what you want. It is your house. It really helped me realize that I don’t need to impress anyone and my house is an expression of me. It also helped me view others that way too. ***Abby
Here to Stay by Melissa Tagg
After playing nomad for five years, Blake Hunziker has finally had enough of adventure. Not sure what reception he’ll get from everyone back in Whisper Shore, he’s stunned at not only a warm welcome from his hometown but also a job offer. The job is his if he can successfully pull off the annual Christmas Festival. If only he knew the first thing about coordinating events…
If there’s one thing Autumn Kingsley knows, it’s Whisper Shore. For years, she’s been stuck running her family’s inn when all she wants is to see the world. Now she has a visit scheduled from a potential investor who could take over the inn, as well as a dream job offer in Paris. But with just two weeks to whip the inn into shape, her chance at escape is a long shot.
The Hunzikers and the Kingsleys may not get along, but Blake knows Autumn’s the only one who can help him. She agrees to a trade–she’ll help with the Festival and he’ll help with inn repairs. But what was meant to be a simple deal quickly becomes much more than that when the guy who’s done running away joins forces with the girl who can’t wait to leave.
******I loved this sophomore release by Melissa Tagg just as much as her first! Autumn and Blake are wonderful characters and the story is as funny as it is endearing. I want to visit Whisper Shore and be at the Christmas Festival. A great contemporay love story with a gentle reminder that God can love us, in spite of our past.****** —-Bethany
When the Morning Glory Blooms by Cynthia Ruchti
Becky rocks a baby that rocked her world. Sixty years earlier, with her fiancé Drew in the middle of the Korean Conflict, Ivy throws herself into her work at a nursing home to keep her sanity and provide for the child Drew doesn’t know is coming. Ivy cares for Anna, an elderly patient who taxes Ivy’s listening ear until the day she suspects Anna’s tall tales are not just idle ramblings. They’re Anna’s disjointed memories of a remarkable life. Finding a faint thread of hope she can’t resist tugging, Ivy records Anna’s memoir, scribbling furiously after hours to keep up with the woman’s emotion-packed grace-hemmed stories. Is Ivy’s answer buried in Anna’s past? And what connects them to Becky?
Becky, Ivy, Anna–three women fight a tangled vine of deception in search of the blossoming simplicity of truth.
*******I love books that connect people across time and show how we are the same no matter what era we are born. This book will inspire you to listen for God’s call on your life and watch how He will enable you to accomplish it. —Bethany