Monday, January 22, 2018

Review: You'll think of Me by Robin Lee Hatcher

From the Back of the Book

Abandoned once too often, Brooklyn Myers never intended to return to Thunder Creek, Idaho. Her hometown holds too many memories of heartache and rejection. But when her estranged husband Chad Hallston dies and leaves his family home and acreage to her and their ten-year-old daughter Alycia, it’s an opportunity to change their lives for the better—a chance Brooklyn can’t pass up, for Alycia’s sake if not her own.

Derek Johnson, Chad’s best friend since boyhood, isn’t keen on the return of Brooklyn Myers to Thunder Creek. He still blames her for leading his friend astray. And now she has ruined his chance to buy the neighboring ten acres which would have allowed him to expand his organic farm. To add insult to injury, Chad’s dying request was that Derek become the father to Alycia that Chad never was. How can he keep that promise without also spending time with the girl’s mother?
Brought together by unexpected circumstances, Derek and Brooklyn must both confront challenges to their dreams and expectations. He must overcome long held misconceptions about Brooklyn while she must learn to trust someone other than herself. And if they can do it, they just might discover that God has something better in mind than either of them ever imagined.
My Thoughts
I loved, loved, LOVED You'll think of Me by Robin Lee Hatcher! I was drawn in right from the first page where Brooklyn, a single mom who is struggling financially, is thinking about how she approves of, and even encourages, her ten-year-old daughter's love of reading because they can afford that hobby thanks to the local library. 
I think Brooklyn is a unique character in that when we meet her, she is already strong in her faith. I really liked her because she is responsible and self-sufficient even though she is struggling to get by. She had a very challenging upbringing which lead her to make a decision to marry young and then she has a baby and is abandoned by her young husband. Brooklyn befriends her neighbor Esther who is sick with cancer, but a wonderful example of faith to Brooklyn. I really liked Brooklyn's self-talk of God's promises when negativity or challenges would creep in.
Derrick is a wonderful hero. He's a small town deputy and an organic farmer. Derrick is also a Christian and just a good guy. He gets off to a rocky start with Brooklyn because he doesn't have good memories from her from their high school days and because he wanted to buy the property that she inherits from her late husband. Derrick's maturity shines through in the way he interacts with  Brooklyn's daughter, Alycia, and how he gains an understanding of why Brooklyn was the way she was in high school.
Derrick's grandmother is fabulous and I wish we all had one of these women in our lives! She's an encourager and wise and rooted in her faith.
There was a sub-storyline (is that a word?) throughout the book that deals with physical abuse, however I thought it was handled very well. 
I already have the next book in this series on reserve at the library! 
If you click on the book image at the top of this post, it will take you to the author's web-site where you can read an excerpt of this book. If you like contemporary Christian fiction, I think you'll be hooked from the beginning, too!
I Was Inspired
At one point, Derrick is thinking about Proverbs 20:24 "A person's steps are directed by the Lord." He is remembering a time when his grandmother told him that "God's stops were just as important as His directions to move ahead." I thought that was a great perspective and reminder.

Is there a time in your life when you felt God's "stop"?

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