Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Take a Chance on Me by Susan May Warren

About the Book:

Darek Christiansen is almost a dream bachelor—oldest son in the large Christiansen clan, heir to their historic Evergreen Lake Resort, and doting father. But he’s also wounded and angry since the tragic death of his wife, Felicity. No woman in Deep Haven dares come near.

New assistant county attorney Ivy Madison simply doesn’t know any better when she bids on Darek at the charity auction. Nor does she know that when she crafted a plea bargain three years ago to keep Jensen Atwood out of jail and in Deep Haven fulfilling community service, she was releasing the man responsible for Felicity’s death. All Ivy knows is that the Christiansens feel like the family she’s always longed for. And once she gets past Darek’s tough exterior, she finds a man she could spend the rest of her life with. Which scares her almost as much as Darek learning of her involvement in his wife’s case.

Caught between new love and old grudges, Darek must decide if he can set aside the past for a future with Ivy—a future more and more at risk as an approaching wildfire threatens to wipe out the Christiansen resort and Deep Haven itself.

My Thoughts:

Susan May Warren introduces us to the Christiansen family, a family of eight and proud owners of a historic resort in our favorite town of Deep Haven.  Her first novel focuses on oldest son Darek, and boy is he a mess!

He's lost his wife and is raising his three year old son with the help of his family, but that weight of anger and desire for payback haunts his every move.  Can Darek be the parent Tiger needs while he clings to the hurt and pain of that fateful night?

Jensen isn't the bad boy, wild child everyone thinks he is.  He's followed in Darek's shadow most of his life, and when he got a bit too close, circumstances bit him.  Now he's paying for a crime he didn't commit, but no one seems to notice or care.  Just a hundred more hours and he can escape The Town That Hated Jensen.

Ivy just wants a home.  It would be great if Darek and Tiger came in the deal, but once he learns the truth behind what she's done, Deep Haven will most likely be in her rearview mirror.  And Claire can't decide who's she is most angry with: her parents, Jensen, Darek, or Felicity...her best friend...the one who left Claire alone.

Her words still haunt me...He is not kind.  An echo in the dark night of the soul, and one I can relate to, whether I want to admit it or not.  That alone is worth the price of the book.

But oh, how much more you'll glean from spending time with this new family to love!  Personally, I'm eager for Casper's story!!

After reading "Take A Chance On Me" I understand why the Lord says vengeance is His and His alone.  He's the only one who can master it and dole it out unscathed.  As humans, we get tangled in our own plots and plans and we end up being the punished ones.

The message of hope, grace, mercy and forgiveness is powerful in Susan's new novel.  I loved meeting the new characters, and I'm super excited for the new series...if every sibling gets a story, that's SIX BOOKS!  WOOT!  WOOT!

However, the pacing of this one was a bit slow.  I rarely yawn when I'm reading a novel by Susan, but I caught myself a couple of times in the slower moments.  I'm not quite sure what slowed the reading down so much, except a lack of dialogue for long stretches?

That said, this is still remarkable fiction, with believable characters that could easily walk off the page and into your town.  You know these people...they just go by different names where you live.  Come and get to know the Christiansens and their extended'll be glad you did!

I received a copy of "Take A Chance On Me" from Tyndale Publishing in exchange for an honest review.  Highly recommended, and eager for the second novel!

To sample the first chapter, click here.

To read more about Susan and her thoughts behind "Take a Chance on Me", click here.

Happy Reading!



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