Noah and Josephine discover their divorce was never actually finalized, their lives are turned upside down.
Following his divorce, Noah gave up his dream job and settled at a remote horse ranch in the Blue Ridge Mountains of northern Georgia, putting much-needed distance between himself and the former love of his life. But then Noah gets a letter from the IRS claiming he and Josephine are still married. When he confronts Josephine, they discover that she missed the final step in filing the paperwork and they are, in fact, still married.
Josephine is no happier about the news than Noah. Maybe the failed marriage -- and botched divorce -- was her fault, but her heart was shattered right alongside his, more than he would ever believe. The sooner they put this marriage behind them, the better for both of their sakes.
But when Josephine delivers the final paperwork to his ranch, the two become stranded in his cottage during the worst spring snowstorm in a decade. Being trapped with Josephine is a test of Noah's endurance. He wrestles with resentment and an unmistakable pull to his wife -- still beautiful, still brave, and still more intriguing than any woman he's ever known.
As they find themselves confronted with each other and their shared past, old wounds surface and tempers flare. But when they are forced out into the storm, they must rely on each other in a way they never have before. Josephine finally opens up about her tragic past, and Noah realizes she's never been loved unconditionally by anyone -- including him. Will Noah accept the challenge to pursue Josephine's heart? And can she finally find the courage to trust Noah?
5 Tissue Box Alert! This is a powerful love story that's real and raw and emotionally gut-wrenching. My tummy is still doing flip-flops and my heart feels bruised. What a testimony of unconditional love -- both the Grace that was extended to us on the cross and the grace we offer to one another. Not an easy read by any means but so worth the emotional bludgeoning. The kind of story that transforms the reader. Convicts anew.
Artfully told through present day and flashbacks, Hunter painstakingly lays out a story of despair that turns into triumph. A shattered marriage. Two broken people. I was on tenterhooks the entire read. Often left reeling after one disclosure or another. And there are so many unexpected twists in the plot! A romance so deeply intimate that I felt an intruder at times.
This is so much more than a story about two people who discover they aren't actually divorced. That premise is captivating enough for a romance novel. But it's where Hunter takes us that makes this an exceptional read. There's so much more I want to say but I don't want to reveal plot details. Sweetbriar Cottage is definitely a fantastic candidate for a book club selection. In fact, I might just create a club so I can book talk to my heart's content! Definitely on my top ten reads of 2017 (if I was into making up top ten lists.)
If you would like a chance to win a copy of Sweetbriar Cottage, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadAT yahooDOTca. If you add your email address to your comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday October 15 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.