Monday, April 02, 2012
Wildflowers from Winter by Katie Ganshert
Wildflowers from Winter is a debut novel by author Katie Ganshert, and it's one I really enjoyed!
While I don't generally pick up a lot of "women's fiction", I quickly found myself immersed in the world of Bethany Quinn and those who populate her home town of Peaks, Iowa.
Here's the back cover blurb:
A young architect at a prestigious Chicago firm, Bethany Quinn has built a life far removed from her trailer park teen years. Until an interruption from her estranged mother reveals that tragedy has struck in her hometown and a reluctant Bethany is called back to rural Iowa. Determined to pay her respects while avoiding any emotional entanglements, she vows not to stay long. But the unexpected inheritance of farmland and a startling turn of events in Chicago forces Bethany to come up with a new plan.
Handsome farmhand Evan Price has taken care of the Quinn farm for years. So when Bethany is left the land, he must fight her decisions to realize his dreams. But even as he disagrees with Bethany's vision, Evan feels drawn to her and the pain she keeps so carefully locked away.
For Bethany, making peace with her past and the God of her childhood doesn't seem like the path to freedom. Is letting go the only way to new life, love and a peace she's not even sure exists?
I think Ms. Ganshert does a great job of bringing Bethany to life, plus allowing the reader an honest, tangible, connection to painful circumstances from her past. The inner thoughts and emotions she experiences throughout the story are authentically explored, while not being cliche ridden. I also found the dialogue strong and easy to follow.
The relationship between Bethany and Evan is more of a gentle, steady, buildup rather than the more intense passion I generally go for, but it seemed to fit the flow of the story nicely. As I said earlier, I'd classify this in the women's fiction category, so it definitely covers more life issues, persay, versus placing a heavier focus on the romance aspects.
While Wildflowers from Winter is a slower, more thoughtful read, it definitely held my attention, and kept me wanting to find out how things would wrap up in the end.
I think Katie Ganshert's novel is a welcome addition to the contemporary inspirational genre, and I look forward to reading the continuation of Robin's story in Wishing on Willows.
Read an excerpt
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I received a complimentary advanced review copy of this book from Waterbrook/Multnomah Publishers in exchange for my honest opinion.