Thursday, June 1, 2017

Sweetbriar Cottage (By: Denise Hunter)

Sweetbriar Cottage

By: Denise Hunter

Josephine Dupree runs a hair salon, and tries to ignore the whispers behind her back about her reputation. From an abusive childhood to being used as an adult, her years have mostly been isolated, lonely and full of bad choices. Except for one time in her life - when she was married to Noah Mitchell. He actually made her feel lovely on the inside and perhaps worthy of real love. Life was good and hopeful - until that all fell apart as well.

Noah Mitchell has purchased a farm up in the mountains and rarely comes down to town. Too many memories, especially when he passes Josephine's hair salon. But when he learns from the IRS about a mistake in their divorce paperwork, and the two of them are actually still married, he has no choice but to face her again. In an attempt to correct the problem, the two get stranded together in the worst snowstorm of the decade. Neither of them wants to face the problems of the past - but they must if they are to move forward.

Josephine has some pretty awful things in her background that have shaped who she is today. Her flirtatious demeanor is the only way she knows how to protect herself. Noah never really bothered to find out about her past while they were married, but if they are to reach a place of forgiveness and understanding he must face the ugly truths. Issues of child abuse, betrayal, forgiveness and worth are dealt with.

Noah has a strong faith in the Lord and lives like it. But he has a lot to learn about extending God's forgiveness to others; he frequently prays about it and allows God to speak to his heart. On the other hand, Josephine keeps her distance from God because she figures He couldn't possibly care about someone like her. As she faces her past throughout this book, she realizes that God has been right there waiting for her the entire time.

Although it's clear Josephine makes her peace with God, these two chicks wish we would have been able to read more insight into her "coming to Jesus" moment!

Love Story
Noah and Josephine have some serious chemistry! They have never stopped loving each other, even after the divorce and it's obvious right away when they come face to face again. Although the heat is turned up on these two, Noah is sure to still treat their relationship right and keeps purity at the forefront of his actions. These two have a lot to work through, and author Denise masterfully writes the complex intricacies of such a relationship.

This book was very, very good and came close to being a five star in our book! The one thing we wished for, however, was seeing more of a spiritual "come to Jesus" moment for Josephine. Although it is clear she makes her peace with her past and with God, we aren't given a front row seat to her conversion. Bummer! However, the rest of the book had all the right elements to make this a must read for those who love a good story of redemption and forgiveness.

Note: We were given this book free in exchange for our honest review.

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