Author: Susan May Warren
Review by Grace Olson
Taken from Tyndale House Publishers’ website description of Take a Chance on Me:
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.
First of all, I’m going to say “Thank you!” to Litfuse Publicity Group. I won Take a Chance on Me and three other books in their weekly ‘What’s the Big Picture’ contest.
I’m a wee bit flabbergasted (yes, I just used two great words right there) that I haven’t read any of Susan May Warren’s fiction yet. I’ve heard so much about her. I’m a member of the My Book Therapy Voices, (a writer’s group/resource she started) but I’ve never read any of her novels. Go figure. Take a Chance on Me was a great introduction to her writing.
The characters in Take a Chance on Me were great. I really loved that Susan told the story from several points of view: Ivy, Darek, Claire, and Jensen’s. Sometimes, when a story is told through that many characters, the reader knows a little about all, but is close to none. I applaud Susan on being able to make so many points of view work. I was able to get to know each of these characters, and despite their faults, I liked them. And there are faults. Each of these four characters struggles with some aspect of their past that is keeping them from living fully in their present.
Then there is the novel’s title. The title played in beautifully in the story, in so many different ways, an aspect that made the book all the more meaningful. Taking a chance on friendship relationships. Taking a chance on romantic relationships. And most importantly, taking a chance on God.
Finally, the cover. At first, I was confused as to what it was supposed to represent, but as I read more of the story, it became clear to me, making the picture all the more poignant.
Take a Chance on Me has found a permanent place on my bookshelf, a noteworthy feat, seeing as how I’m definitely more of a historical fiction lover. I can’t say there was anything about Take a Chance on Me that I didn’t like, and so I’m happy to say I can wholeheartedly recommend it. If you’re looking for a novel that combines a strong sense of family, a riveting plot, a sweet romance, and a powerful message, then you might want to pick up a copy of Take a Chance on Me. You’ll be glad you did. As for me, I’m already looking for the next installment in the Christiansen Family Series.
About the Author
Biography from Tyndale House Publishers’ website: Susan May Warren is the bestselling, Christy and RITA Award–winning author of more than forty novels whose compelling plots and unforgettable characters have won acclaim with readers and reviewers alike. She served with her husband and four children as a missionary in Russia for eight years before she and her family returned home to the States. She now writes full-time as her husband runs a lodge on Lake Superior in northern Minnesota, where many of her books are set. She and her family enjoy hiking, canoeing, and being involved in their local church.
Susan holds a BA in mass communications from the University of Minnesota. Several of her critically acclaimed novels have been ECPA and CBA bestsellers, were chosen as Top Picks by Romantic Times, and have won the RWA’s Inspirational Reader’s Choice contest and the American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year award. Five of her books have been Christy Award finalists. In addition to her writing, Susan loves to teach and speak at women’s events about God’s amazing grace in our lives.~ To learn more about Susan and her other books, visit her web page: http://www.susanmaywarren.com/