Friday, August 15, 2014

Hearts Unfold (Miracle at Valley Rise #Book 1) by Karen Welch #Women #AmReading #MustRead

While she knew Jack's support was essential to her success, she would need other allies, Mike and Sara McConnell in particular.  They were the ones who made it possible for her to stay on through her senior year of high school, who guided her during the confusing months following her father's stroke.  When J.D. was admitted to a nursing home in Charlottesville, Mike and Sara had taken Emily into their home in the parsonage.  With two sons, one a classmate of Emily's, the other four years older and just entering the Army, they provided a family environment, which Jack, as a bachelor, could not have done.

Sara had been so kind, so watchful, when Emily suddenly became part of her household, making every effort to see she had the privacy a girl her age needed.  She understood and encouraged Emily's wish to visit the farm, to put things in order after her father's abrupt departure, helping her pack and clear the house, preparing it for an uncertain future.  Mike offered Emily a sounding board, guiding her toward acceptance of the changes in her life in the context of her already well-developed faith.  As her father's long-time friend, he shared her grief and understood her frustration at facing a future where the man they’d known was now so cruelly disabled.

Mike and Sara would understand her need to come home.  Whether they would agree she was mature enough to take on so much responsibility, she couldn't be sure.  But their support could serve as added ammunition against whatever doubts Jack might have about her readiness to live on her own.
Then there was Angela to consider.  Where Jack would debate the wisdom of her plan with rock solid logic, her godmother would most like respond emotionally, with the sort of fiercely intense approach she took to everything in her life, from her music to her family.  It seemed if her heart told her to do a thing, no matter how illogical, Angela did it.  While her instincts usually proved to be wise in the end, there were often heated arguments or torrents of tears along the way.  With her Italian husband, Sal, she frequently engaged in furious debates, before the predictably passionate reconciliation.  Even with her teenaged daughter, Lil, the similarities between the two led to endless wrangling over the most trivial issues, generally concluding with Angela's taking the day.

The thought of seeking Angela’s approval set Emily’s stomach quivering and effectively cleared her mind of any and all coherent arguments.  She might be able to stand up to Jack’s reason, but she knew she was no match for Angela.  The vision of Angela’s dark eyes flashing as she bluntly spelled out the obvious made her cringe and retreat.  No, she would go to Angela only if and when she knew she’d won over Jack.  Emily believed Angela would likely accept a fait accompli with good grace.  She was a loving godmother and a caring ally.  But she would much prefer informing Angela of her plans, rather than attempting to enlist her help.

~~Miracle at Valley Rise Series~~

Hearts Unfold~Book One
Entreat Me Not~Book Two
Heart of My Own Heart~Book Three
Offered for Love~Book Four

A secret Christmas homecoming, a blinding snowstorm, and in the course of one night two shattered lives will be changed forever.Nineteen-year-old Emily Haynes had lost almost everything she loved. Relying on what seems to be guidance from her invalid father, she returns to her past in hopes of discovering some sign toward the future. 

What begins as a joyous homecoming quickly becomes a nightmare when a badly injured stranger stumbles on the scene, his brief presence threatening to alter everything Emily believes about herself and the plan for her life. A less determined girl might have been shaken by such an experience, but not Emily. She is certain she’s made the right choice, so certain that in the following three years, she almost convinces herself.

Superstar violinist Stani Moss appeared to have everything–fame, fortune and a career guaranteed to bring more of the same, until one hasty decision placed it all in jeopardy. Terrified and confused, Stani struggles not only to recover his former skill, but to find answers to the questions which haunt him. Throughout his slow journey back, one image lingers in his buried memories of that fateful night–the vision of a girl he’s never met. The journey will eventually lead him to Emily, and beyond that day, everything about his life will be transformed.

Set in the years around 1970, Hearts Unfold begins the saga of two people whose paths should never have crossed, who defy the odds to create a place they can share. The first of four volumes in the Miracle at Valley Rise Series, this novel could stand alone as a triumphant tale of romance, but there’s much more to the story, as Emily and Stani reveal their pasts and strive to bridge the distance between their worlds. Follow their progress, be entertained by their adventures, and perhaps be inspired by their unwavering belief in the transforming power of love.
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Genre - Women’s Fiction, Saga Fiction
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
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