Author: Susan May Warren
Review by Grace Olson
Taken from Tyndale’s website description of The Wonder of You:
Mortified after her semester abroad is cut short, Amelia Christiansen returns to Deep Haven, certain she isn’t brave enough for the adventures she’s dreamed of. The last thing she expects is for the man who broke her heart to cross the Atlantic and beg forgiveness.
Heir to a European hotel dynasty, Roark St. John has trekked from one exotic locale to another, haunted by tragedy and the expectations that accompany his last name. Amelia is the first woman to give him a reason to stop running. He’ll do anything for a second chance—even contend with Amelia’s old flame, who is intent on sending Roark packing.
While one surprise after another leaves Amelia reeling, Roark’s continued presence only highlights the questions pursuing her. Like him, is she running from the life God has called her to? Could finding her new place mean leaving home behind?
Whenever I receive one of Susie’s latest releases on my doorstep, I have conflicting emotions: read immediately or wait so as to prolong the process? It truly is a difficult decision. 😉 I was SO eager to read The Wonder of You, especially after the way Always on My Mind led up to Amelia’s story. Again, Susie did not disappoint.
This story touched my heart, honestly. Amelia reminds me so much of myself in some ways. She struggles with wanting to do big, brave things, yet finding the courage to do those things is a lot harder than you might imagine. I get that. I also liked how Roark didn’t have it all together in the courage department either. Though Amelia thought he didn’t struggle as she did, he showed her that simply wasn’t true. Then of course, the fact that a handsome European and a northwoods lumberjack duked it out in a fantastic way was awesome. I have to say, being from the Northern Midwest myself, I loved that element. 🙂 Susie did a great job again of crafting an entertaining, gripping story that explores new love, maintaining married love, and trusting God’s love. I would suggest, if you’ve never read any of the Christiansen Family series, that you start from the beginning, otherwise you’re going to hit quite a few spoilers and a good deal of confusion. I have no idea how Susie is going to manage Owen’s story, especially in light of Casper and Raina, but I’m looking forward to how she pulls it off.
I have to share two quotes from this story, because in them, Susie hit the nail right on the head:
“We’re satisfied to get a glimpse of His (God’s) vision, and then we seek out the places where we can accomplish it on our own. And frankly, that’s why we live empty, frustrated lives. Pursuing God’s vision requires faith in God to work it out. It means turning our hearts to Him fully, undivided, focused on loving Jesus with every part of ourselves. I can’t do that on my own. Truth is, I don’t even want to. Loving God like that takes courage and the surety that He won’t fail us.” Pg. 174
“…You don’t have to see the future to trust in God’s goodness, in His love for you. You simply need to turn around and take a good look at what He’s already done. Then you can let the wonder of His love for you draw you to Him.” Pg. 369
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/
I was given a review copy of The Wonder of You from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I received no monetary compensation for my review. The opinions expressed are my own.