Title: A Worthy Heart
Author: Sara Beth Williams
Series: A Second Chance Book 2
Publication Date: July 2019
Length: 310 pages
About the Book
Joel Bennett has always known Serena Hayes as his sister’s gregarious best friend. In the three years since Lacey began college, Serena became a regular houseguest, but lately, she’s absent more than not. When Joel discovers she’s in an abusive relationship, protectiveness from within roars to life. With only a part-time job to support her and nowhere to go, Serena fears leaving her current relationship would jeopardize her chances of graduating college. After a brutal attack leaves her no choice, she courageously moves out. On her journey toward regaining confidence, self-worth, and independence, Joel falls in beside her, encouraging her. The way he emulates Godly love and compassion draws her close—not just to him, but to the God who can satisfy her longing for love better than any man,Attraction sizzles between them, but events from their pasts cast shadows of doubt. When the unthinkable happens, can Serena open her heart to a second chance at love, or is she destined to be alone?
This is a well written book which drew me in from the beginning. I enjoy reading stories about characters who are struggling, but "pick themselves up by their bootstraps" and persevere. Serena did that, however she struggled with self worth for a while.
It was difficult to read about Serena's initial situation. I appreciated that she chose to walk away from it. I couldn't relate to Joel's anger over her situation given that they didn't seem to have a close relationship, but I thought their relationship grew at a reasonable pace and had realistic challenges throughout the story. I appreciated the spiritual content included in the story.
In addition to watching Serena and Joel's story unfold, there was some suspense woven in to the story that had me wondering "Is this the chapter that something bad is going to happen?" every chapter. This story is definitely not a fluffy, escape from reality romance, but it is good!
I was inspired by how the characters heard from the Holy Spirit. That aspect of the story inspires me to be as plugged in to God as I can be and reminds me to take time to listen for the Holy Spirit in my life.
Readers should be aware that this story deals with abuse.
This is the second book in the author's A Second Chance series, but can be read as a stand alone. I recommend reading the first book (you can read my review here) as it will allow you to know some of the other characters figuring prominently in the book.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. All thoughts and opinions are my own.