The title of this book review should be “You Can’t Judge a Book by Its Back Cover Blurb.” When I read the blurb, I moaned to my husband, “If the book reads like this, it’s going to be a long, painful read.” Ah, but instead between the covers lay a tender, sweet story, a story of coming to terms with life’s difficulties and moving on to better things. It’s a story of looking beyond oneself, and the blessings that come from reaching out to others.
Lacy has returned home after a betrayal that has left her emotionally and financially drained. She feels like returning to the small town of Coldwater, Oklahoma is a giant step backward. Jacob has returned to Coldwater after sustaining severe physical trauma while serving as a marine in Afghanistan, leaving him to cope with PTSD. Jacob, once the local love ‘em and leave ‘em heart throb, is now looking for someone with whom he can have a deeper relationship, someone who can see him rather than his injury. Lacy is not ready to put herself in a position to be hurt again, not ready to trust. Will their friendship stand up to their insecurities; is there hope that it may develop into something more?
Then there is Daniel Scott, Lacy’s former boyfriend and Jacob’s former best friend. Daniel struggles with his relationship with his wife who is fighting in the only way she knows how to help him overcome his addiction. He struggles with his relationship with the abusive father of his childhood, now an alcoholic, homeless Vietnam vet whom the Coldwater Warm Hearts Club has taken under their wing. Will Lacy’s reappearance make reconciliation with his wife more challenging? How will it impact what little remains of his connection to Jacob, the friend who kept him from making what might have been the biggest mistake of his life?
Those who read my reviews will be accustomed to their being about books that strictly adhere to the standards set forth for Christian fiction. So, I feel obligated to mention that while The Coldwater Warm Hearts Club does have faith based themes, it would better be described as a sweet romance. There is just a bit of language that one would not find in Christian fiction. While sex outside of marriage is alluded to, there are no steamy, explicit sex scenes. I do not believe fans of Christian fiction will feel as if they have compromised by reading this sweet story. Lacy is a seeker, Jacob is rediscovering his faith. Thankfully God gives each of us grace as we work toward maturity in our faith.
I thank Lacy Eddings and Kensington Books for providing me with a copy of The Coldwater Warm Hearts Club in exchange for my honest opinion. I have received no monetary compensation for this review.