From two-time RITA Award–winning author Carla Laureano comes a story of romance, transformation, and the beauty of belonging.
Los Angeles interior designer and former foster kid Kendall Green is in high demand, both for her impeccable eye and for her uncanny ability to uncover the provenance of any piece. But for all her success, skyrocketing costs have put her California home and her business in jeopardy. Then an unexpected inheritance provides a timely solution: a grandmother she never knew has left her a group of historic properties in a tiny Colorado town on the edge of ruin.
To young, untried mayor Gabriel Brandt, Jasper Lake is more than another small town—it’s the place that saved his life. Now, seeing the town slowly wither and die, he’s desperate to restore it to its former glory. Unfortunately, his vision is at odds with a local developer who wants to see the town razed and rebuilt as a summer resort. He’s sure that he can enlist the granddaughter of one of its most prominent former citizens to his cause—until he meets Kendall and realizes that not only does she know nothing of her own history, she has no interest in reviving a place that once abandoned her.
In order to save his beloved town, Gabe must first help Kendall unravel the truth of her own provenance—and Kendall must learn that in order to embrace the future, sometimes you have to start with the past.
‘Sometimes no matter how hard you wished for something, you still came up short.’
I just this minute read the last word of this book. I really enjoy Carla Laureano’s wok and have reread several more than once. So I am always excited to see she has a new book coming out. She writes with a depth that I truly enjoy. She doesn’t just craft characters and throw them on a page. No, she delves into their lives and reveals their deepest emotions, their longings and heartbreaks.
‘If you didn’t let anyone in, you couldn’t be hurt by rejection. You couldn’t be disappointed. It was easier to be alone by your own choice than to have someone make that choice for you.’
The characters of Gabe and Kendall are incredibly well formed here and I very much was all in learning their back stories and what brought them to this point in their lives. This was a long story, but never felt forced or long. It moved deeply and the word I believe I’d use is ‘fulfilling’. It was heart-satisfying.
Laureano shows us that there are never any coincidences with God. He is there, waiting patiently, loving His creation. The spiritual thread of this story is so powerful-so much so that I found myself smiling numerous times at how the author played it out. And, even though this book has a very strong story line and wonderful characters, God is the true hero of this story. Psalm 139;16 is one verse that went through my mind during the reading. This one is a winner in every way. I felt so good reading it! Well done!
My thanks to Tyndale House for a copy of this book via Net Galley. I was not expected to leave a positive review and the opinion here is my own.