Good afternoon on this snowy February Sunday. The groundhog promised six more weeks of winter and he seems determined to make them as miserable as he can. The snow’s beautiful, but with temperatures in the -teens F, the kids can’t even go out and play.
Today, I’d like to spotlight two books from author Christy Newton. I’ve been privileged to read all of Ms. Newton’s books, and I have to say I have a soft spot for Begin Again, the first book in the Love Again collection.
The set-up for Begin Again
What if one night changed your life forever?
Maisie Scott lost not only her husband and unborn child in a tornado two years ago, she lost her will to live. Keeping busy is the only way she can get by. This small town waitress won’t let herself get attached to anyone . . . until Ryan, the new veterinarian for exotic animals, starts making regular trips to her diner. As hard as she tries not to feel anything, Ryan ignites a spark in her broken heart.
Ryan Tucker craves a happy family of his own more than his momma’s apple pie. Getting over his fiancée leaving him six months ago, he moves to Pleasant Valley for a fresh start. When he meets Maisie and notices the sadness in her eyes, he is determined to put a smile on her pretty face.
When another dangerous storm hits, Ryan stays by Maisie’s side. She fills the missing piece in his heart, but will Ryan share his secret? Can Maisie move on from the past and learn to begin again?
This book more than deserves its five stars. If you like sweet romance, you’ll love this poignant story. I got all choked up, an emotional response that I did not not anticipate when I started reading. Well-written, and beautifully developed, the story brought back bittersweet memories. Everyone who’s experienced loss on the level that Massie and Ryan have will understand their difficulty moving on. It isn’t as easily done as some would think. We can’t escape the past; it’ll always be a part of who and what we are, but we can make room for the future too.
The seond book I want to discuss is the next book in the collection, Trust Again
Dreams of escaping her small town brought Ellie Oliver to New York only to find that life there wasn’t all she’d hoped. Seven years later, she is returning to Pleasant Valley, Indiana with new hopes and secrets. She wants nothing more than to fade into the slow pace of small town life and forget about the demons of her past.
Jacob Jones is at loose ends. At twenty-six, a man shouldn’t be starting his life over from scratch. Finding himself out of work, Jacob looks for a new home in Pleasant Valley. He is ready for the single life just enjoying the company of close friends. All that changes when he takes a job remodeling the town’s toy shop and comes head to head with its new owner. Ellie turns out to be sweeter than the candy she sells in her store.
Ellie and Jacob bring out feelings in each other neither were looking for, but both can’t deny. Can they truly trust again or will their shattered hearts refuse to mend?