|Surprised by Love, by Julie Lessman|
Revell, (October, 2014)
Reviewed by Carrie Fancett Pagels
Megan McClare has returned from France a literally changed young woman. She's not the sweet little best friend buddy that attorney Bram Hughes had known--instead Meg has blossomed into an alluring young woman. And her nemesis, Devin Caldwell, doesn't even recognize her. But once he does--he seeks to make up for lost time and sweep Meg off her feet. Except that her heart already rests in the hands of Bram. But not quite. Because Bram is promised to marry someone else and Devin and Meg's relationship continues.
Meanwhile Meg's mother, Cait, and her Uncle Logan, need to finish off their ongoing and tempestuous relationship if Caitlyn is going to find any peace in her life. She's accepted a marriage proposal from Logan's rival. But in the midst of his despair, God moves his heart and mind to a new place, and he finally grasps the spiritual gifts God is offering him.
Bibliotherapy elements: Forgiveness - strong in both romances, self esteem for Megan and poor eyesight (which she's had corrected by "brand new" contact lenses which I didn't know were even being attempted at that point in time), rivalries in both romances, and following God's will (all of the main characters).
I loved this book--it had some unique elements that made it fresh and Julie put a twist at the end that was brilliant! She had me guessing all the way through, which is difficult for a writer to do as I often know what is happening in a story. In fact in two other reviews I just did, for two authors whose work I really have enjoyed, I had to write that the stories were predictable. Not this one!
Julie creates some lovable and quirky characters. She saves her heroine from being ridiculously naive by throwing in enough explanation to make her actions believable. Lovely voice, great tension, a real page turner!
Thanks to Revell for providing a copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review.
GIVEAWAY: Giveaway of a gently used copy of Julie's book to a commenter on this review (USA only).