My Stubborn Heart
Bethany House, 2012
When Kate Donovan takes a three-month leave of absence from work, to help her grandmother restore the old family home in Redbud, Pennsylvania, all she knew was that she needed the break and was looking forward to spending time with her Gran. What she discovered was a treasure of an old home to restore and bring back to life, and a handful of colorful characters who would change her life.
Matt Jarreau is a heart-stoppingly handsome, ex-professional hockey player, with a tragic past. Pure heartthrob material. But he's not interested and not available. And Kate's not interested either - she's learned her lesson about really handsome guys. So the fact that he's the contractor for the renovation on her grandmother's home shouldn't present an issue. Except, Gran is an unstoppable matchmaker, and Kate's own stubborn heart won't let her see Matt's obvious suffering without trying to fix it. As the two forge an awkward and unlikely friendship, cemented with hard physical labor on the house, Matt struggles with himself - and Kate struggles with God. Both have to learn all over again what trust really means, and just how powerful Love is.
I enjoyed the story, though I felt like the timeline was a bit rushed at times. The bulk of the story takes place over three months, which isn't long I know, but sometimes in places I felt like novel-time was moving faster than real-time would. If that makes sense. I really liked the characters. Matt's a complex dude on the surface: all broken-heart and brick walls; but underneath is a guy that misses living - and hockey. (Even though I'm not a hockey fan, I loved the athletic slant to the story!) Kate's definitely a girl I can relate to - on so many levels. My Stubborn Heart felt real to me - and wasn't overly "preachy" (which I personally find very annoying), it was a real-to-life example of Christian fiction. Looking forward to Becky Wade's future novels!
Book provided by publisher for review.