Thursday, May 5, 2011

To Win Her Heart by Karen Witemeyer - REVIEWED

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
To Win Her Heart
Bethany House (May 1, 2011)
Karen Witemeyer


Karen Witemeyer is a deacon's wife and mother of three who believes the world needs more happily-ever-afters. To that end, she combines her love of bygone eras with her passion for helping women mature in Christ to craft historical romance novels that lift the spirit and nurture the soul.

After growing up in California, Karen moved to Texas to attend Abilene Christian University where she earned bachelor and master's degrees in Psychology. It was also there that she met and married her own Texas hero. He roped her in good, for she has lived in Texas ever since. In fact, she fell so in love with this rugged land of sweeping sunsets and enduring pioneer spirit, that she incorporates it into the pages of her novels, setting her stories in the small towns of a state that burgeoned into greatness in the mid- to late1800s.

Karen is living her dream by writing Christian historical romance novels for Bethany House. When she visited her publisher back in January of 2010, she was interviewed by the staff. If you'd like a behind-the-scenes glimpse into how she develops her story ideas and a description of her bumpy journey to publication, click here to listen to a podcast of that interview.


After completing his sentence for the unintentional crime that derailed his youthful plans for fame and fortune, Levi Grant looks to start over in the town of Spencer, Texas. Spencer needs a blacksmith, a trade he learned at his father’s knee, and he needs a place where no one knows his past.

Eden Spencer has sworn off men, choosing instead to devote her time to the lending library she runs in the town her father founded. When a mountain-sized stranger walks through her door and asks to borrow a book, she's reluctant to trust him. Yet as the mysteries of the town’s new blacksmith unfold, Eden discovers hidden depths in him that tempt her heart.

Eden believes she's finally found a man of honor and integrity. But when the truth about Levi's prodigal past comes to light, can this tarnished hero find a way to win back the librarian’s affections?

My Thoughts:

“You told me God was more interested in offering second chances than pointing fingers at past mistakes. What about you Miss Eden?” (p. 233)

Chloe poses this question to Miss Eden when it becomes apparent that she is standing unfairly in judgment of another. Yet the question is one that could be fairly posed to almost every character in this novel. To Win Her Heart contains much more than a love story and a charming historical setting. This book contains vital truth about the nature of the human heart. On one hand, everyone is trying to avoid calling attention to their past mistakes. On the other hand, everyone is trying to maintain an image that they think others will find socially acceptable for their particular station in life. All must learn to forgive and accept one another with love rather than casting judgment on others whom they perceive to be different or less than they perceive themselves to be.

This is a story that contains a cast of well-developed, unforgettable characters. Everyone in this novel is in a different state before God, but all of them either directly or indirectly work together to allow God to grow and change their hearts and lives in great and unfathomable ways. The love story is tender and touching, the friendships forged are strong and true, and the love shown to each character honestly reflects the heart of God.

I was deeply touched by the underlying truth found in this story. I laughed and cried along with the characters, and I know I will revisit this story again. Karen Whitemeyer is to be applauded for writing such a terrific story! Thank you for touching my heart and challenging me to love others as the Father would have me love.

If you would like to read the first chapter of To Win Her Heart, go HERE.

1 comment:

Mocha with Linda said...

Poking my head above water to say hello. I loved this book, as I did the first two! She creates phenomenal characters and stories.