06 September 2012

Marian Baay reviews Central Park Rendezvous

Central Park Rendezvous

Central Park Rendezvous 
by Ronie Kendig, Dineen Miller, Kim Vogel Sawyer & MaryLu Tyndall
Barbour Publishing, 2012

Review by Marian Baay

5 stars *****

Dream a Little Dream by Ronie Kendig
Afghanistan War, present day

Jamie Rosso's uncle Alan is a collector of war memorabilia. He reseaches medals and other pieces and tries to find out who they belonged to. He's a Vietnam veteran and when he returned the woman he was supposed to marry was gone. He always kept hoping he would find her. Now after almost 40 years he's ready to move on with life and he's closing his shop. Jamie can't believe uncle Alan is giving up and she decides not to give up. When Alan is not looking she's snatching away a box with letters from the Wolfe Estate. The Wolfe family is very dear to Uncle Alan and Jamie can't believe he wants to get rid of this box with letters. Jamie decides to dig through the box and tries to find the living Wolfe relatives.

Sean Wolfe got injured by an IED in the Afghanistan War. He's suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury and has scars on his neck and jaw. His fiancée broke up with him. He is hurt and swears he is done with women.

Sean comes from a family of warriors. His father served in Vietnam and came back a different man. He killed himself when Sean was just 4 years old. 

Jamie found Sean and gave him the letters from his grandfather. First he didn't want to read them, because of the bad memories they would give. But Jamie told him: "We all need the bad memories to recognize the good ones." (I love that quote!)

Sean starts reading the letters and finds out that his dad was a better man than what his mom let him to believe. When he is reading the letters he finds out about a coin that has passed through the Wolfe family for centuries. He asked Jamie if she also found that coin in the box with letters.

Jamie wonders if Sean knows a woman called Gail. She is the woman her Uncle Alan was supposed to marry. Jamie is convinced there must be a connection to the Wolfe family.

Together Jamie and Sean are reading the Wolfe letters and learn the history of the Wolfe family. 

A Love Meant to Be by Dineen Miller

Vietnam War, 1973
Alan is at his friend's (Sean's father) house and there he meets Gail. He's struck by her beauty and disappointed to find out she's engaged to another man. Gail is in New York City for the Summer. Alan offers to show her around and finds himself falling in love with her. Gail is attracted to him, too, but she's engaged. Can their love ever happen?
When Alan is called for duty to Vietnam. Gail promised him to wait for him and they agreed to meet each other on the Bow Bridge. Alan gave the Civil War coin to Gail as a promise of his love for her. But when he came back there was no sign of Gail. What ever happened that she wasn't there and couldn't be found?

To Sing Another Day by Kim Vogel Sawyer

WWII, 1941
Helen Wolfe is the oldest of her siblings. Their parents died and Helen tries to run the family. But when her sister gets sick for a long time, she must stop working to care for her and they ran out of money. Her brother Henry has the Civil War coin and it's the only thing of worth they possess. Helen went to the pawn shop in hopes to get good money for the coin. There she met shop owner Bernie O'Day. He felt sorry for Helen and gave her more money for the coin than its worth. Some time later Henry Wolfe came to Bernie's shop asking for a job. Bernie decided to hire him although he didn't need an extra hand. He just wanted to help the Wolfe family. He starts to care for the family and hopes it might grow to something more with Helen.
When Japan attacks the US, Bernie signs up for duty. Will the coin return to the Wolfe family?

Beauty from Ashes by MaryLu Tyndall

Civil War, 1865
Permelia and Annie Shaw are sisters who live on the Shaw Plantation. Their parents died during the Civil War and their brother is serving in the Army. Annie is engaged to Wiliam Wolfe, colonel in the Army. When he left he gave Annie the coin with the inscription 'Love Never Fails W W'. He's been gone for years and Annie gave up on William and found a new boyfriend. She stopped writing to William and tossed the coin out of the window. Her sister Permelia found the coin and started writing letters to William. William thought Annie was writing the letters and he discovered that she has more depth than he thought. He started to fall in love with this new Annie. 
When the war is over he rushes over to the Shaw Plantation and wonders what Annie will think of his injury--burn marks on the right side of his face. When Annie sees them she is shocked and she cannot make herself look at him. Permelia is shocked too, but she is not afraid to look at him or his scars. What he sees in her eyes is confusing him.
Annie is hiding in her room for two days and Permelia is trying to encourage Annie to come out and meet William. When she finally meets him she can't look him in the eyes or to his injured face. William finds out that she sounds so much different than she did in her letters. He also finds out that he is no longer attracted to her, but Permelia makes his heart race. 
A Wolfe is man of his word and he promised to marry Annie, so he still intends to do so.
When Annie's other lover comes calling, she must make a decision, but she doesn't. Who will she finally choose? What will William do when he finds out who wrote the letters? Who will meet William on New Year's day on the Bow Bridge?

This was a tremendous read! I loved to see all the novellas get connected to each other. Ronie Kendig's Dream a Little Dream is split up in four parts and is told between the other three novellas. Jamie and Sean's story each time develops further after they have learned more about the Wolfe family (after another novella). Will they also find love?

All novellas center around the Bow Bridge in Central Park - William Wolfe's coin with inscription 'Love Never Fails' - in each story someone is struggling to trust God and in each story a man goes or went to war.

*Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for my review copy.*

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment and your email to be entered in this week's contest. Drawing will be late Saturday. Your choice of Dineen's books, choice of format*. Void where prohibited by law. *International winners only receive the book in ebook format, not as a paperback.


  1. MARIAN..wonderful review as usual! Wasn't this a fun read?

  2. Thank you TERESA! This was a fun read indeed! :)

  3. Thanks Marian!! Wonderful review! Ronie had the hardest part trying to weave all the stories together. She did a great job!

  4. Oh wow, this sounds like an amazing read! I love when separate stories link up like that... Wowzers :o)


  5. hi REBECCA, it IS an amazing read :) Good luck in the drawing!

  6. I would love to win this, I like more than one story in a book!

  7. MARIAN, wonderful review or should I say reviews! All of these authors are amazing!

  8. Oooh, excited about this for sure! Would be so nice to win!

    A Bow for Mama

  9. Wow!! terrific reviews and how I'd love to win this book with so many stories in it. Please count me in for a chance to win. Thank you and blessings!!! Darlene


  10. What a fun giveaway! I have heard good things about this book. I have read "Veil of Pearls" by Tyndall; it was good! Thank you for hosting the giveaway!


  11. MARYLU, I overlooked your comment. Shame on me! Thanks for stopping by and spreading the word. :)

  12. DEBBIE, you are entered. I wish you luck!

  13. DIANA, thanks! Yes, it's actually 4 reviews in 1. Yes, you're right! All authors are amazing!

  14. SHIRLEY, thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. Hope you win!

  15. DARLENE, always good to see you pop up! Good luck in the drawing.

  16. 4READIN, I also loved Veil of Pearls - one of MaryLu's best I think! Her part in this book doesn't disappoint, either!

  17. Oh man gotta get my hands on this one! Thanks for the read. Love, love, loved it.

    Kristie Truett

  18. Thanks KRISTIE! Hope you'll enjoy the book when you get your hands on it. :)

  19. This book sounds WONDEFUL! Please enter me. I would love to read t.
    katiegalyean (at) yahoo (dot) com

  20. Okay KATIE, we will enter you. Wishing you luck in the drawing!

  21. I love to read and read and read... :) Would love to win!

    Rita Clark

  22. We are much alike then RITA! :) We're going to add you in the drawing.

  23. oh, thanks for the chance to win

    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

  24. Great reviews, MARIAN!!! I only got to read ML's story and I haven't finished it yet, but it was really good. What a stellar cast of authors to write this novella collection--amazing! I should read them all--you've made them sound so great! Oh and we will give away a copy of this book AND a second drawing, too, this week! Blessings!

  25. This is my kind of book! Thank you for hosting this giveaway.


  26. Marian, great review! I love the "Romancing America" series. I always look for those when I visit bookstores. Please enter me in the drawing.


    P.S. Hello to Carrie, Diana, and Teresa! :)

  27. This is a great line-up of authors so I'm sure the book is very good. I'd love to read it. Thanks for the chance to win a copy of Central Park Rendezvous.


  28. Thanks Marian for the reviews in this book. Would so love to win this one. Thanks for the chance. It would be such an interesting book to own. Please enter me. Maxie ( mac262@me.com )

  29. CARRIE, you need to buy some earphones and listen to some audios in your sleep. I'm sure it would give you some interesting dreams!

  30. WENDY, thanks for stopping by!

    ANGI, the Romancing America series are nice indeed!

    PAM, yes they are all great authors and great stories!

    MAXIE, the book would be a nice addition for your bookshelf.

    You are all entered! Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

  31. I have only read one of these four authors. Thanks for the review and the chance to win a copy of this collection!

    jswaks at gmail dot com

  32. JES, believe me when I say all authors are awesome. Good luck in the drawing!

  33. All those great authors in one book, oh my! :)
    Thank you for the chance to win this book!

  34. Great post, thanks for a chance to win a book. I love to get new books. God bless you guys.

    Glenda Parker

  35. SAMANTHA, thanks for dropping by!

    GLENDA, maybe you'll win a new book this week. ;)

    You are both entered. Good luck!

  36. Still would like this book today!!! Yay~! Kathleen

  37. Four great authors and four great stories can't go wrong with Central Park Rendezvous!

  38. JENNIFER, we will enter you. Good luck!

  39. Great review and wonderful authors! I'd love a chance to win Central Park Rendevous.
    worthy2bpraised at gmail dot com

  40. Thank you MERRY. We will give you a chance - good luck in the drawing!


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