Tag: Jennifer Rodewald

Quote from Finding Evergreen by Jennifer Rodewald: She'd failed on an epic scale. For perfectionist Brandi Thompson, that was the worst possible outcome.

Book Review | Finding Evergreen by Jennifer Rodewald

If you’re looking for a fun contemporary Christian romance novel to read, Finding Evergreen is not for you (but you’ll love Jennifer Rodewald’s recent Valentine’s Day novella, The Cupcake Dilemma).

Instead, reading Finding Evergreen is like watching your two best friends destroy their marriage.

It’s rough. It’s tough. It’s nasty.

Finding Evergreen is not an easy read, and there were times I wanted to run away and pretend it wasn’t happening. Actually, I did. I usually read one novel at a time, over a couple of days. Finding Evergreen took me a couple of weeks to read, because I kept putting it down to read something a little more lighthearted.

But I kept coming back to Finding Evergreen. It was worth the effort, no matter how often I wanted to bang Brandi and Ethan’s stupid heads together. Or force them to have an adult conversation. Anything rather than watching them both trying to justify themselves as being in the right.

There was plenty of blame to go around as two people with issues brought those issues into a marriage. There was also the added complication of So-J, their foster daughter, with even more issues, and the difficulty of trying to get through newlywed life with a sassy eleven-year-old in the house.

It wasn’t just me who found the characters difficult. In her author’s note at the end, Jennifer Rodewald says:

“Brandi Thompson is the most unlikeable character I’ve ever written—and I did it on purpose.”

Jennifer shares what Brandi and Ethan discover: it is not easy to love well, and there are no easy answers. But we must remember that nothing separates us from the love of God, not even our misbeliefs about His love.

Finding Evergreen is the third book in the Grace Revealed series, following Blue Columbine and Red Rose Bouquet. It can be read as a standalone novel (I haven’t read the other two yet), but I’m sure reading the books in order would give Finding Evergreen added depth.

Recommended for those who aren’t looking for likeable characters and easy reads.

Thanks to the author for providing a free ebook for review.

About Jennifer Rodewald

Author Photograph: Jennifer RodewaldJennifer Rodewald is passionate about the Word of God and the powerful vehicle of story. Four kids and her own personal superman make her home in southwestern Nebraska delightfully chaotic.

Born in Colorado, she experienced both the seclusion of rugged mountain living and the busy streets of a Denver suburb during her growing up years. Somewhere in the middle of college, she married a Husker and found her way back to the quiet lifestyle of a rural area, which suits just fine.

Blessed with a robust curiosity, Jen loves to research. Whether she’s investigating the history of a given area, the biography of a Christian icon, or how nature declares the glory of God, her daily goal is to learn something new. Aiming to live with boundless enthusiasm, her creed is vision, pursuit, and excellence.

Jen lives and writes in a lovely speck of a town where she watches with amazement while her children grow up way too fast, gardens, and marvels at God’s mighty hand in everyday life.

You can find Jennifer Rodewald online at:

Website | Facebook | Twitter

About Finding Evergreen

He thought he’d found the thrill of his life; she, the romance she hadn’t dared to hope for. Falling in love had been easy. Being married? Totally different story.

Married within a year of meeting, Ethan and Brandi add a foster daughter to their newly established family. Their story is enchanting—inspiring. Except when the fairytale fails. The stresses of unmet expectations and wounds from their pasts knife into their marriage, severing what they believed would be forever.

Hope for a broken marriage. Healing for their wounded spirits. It would take both to find evergreen. Are they brave enough to try?

You can find Finding Evergreen online at:

Amazon | Goodreads

You can read the introduction to Finding Evergreen below:

What’s your favourite Christian book genre?

Bookish Question #47 | What’s your favourite Christian book genre?

Asking a keen reader their favourite genre is like asking any addict about their favourite fix. Well, I assume it is. I haven’t spent a lot of time around addicts!

My favourite genre is romance, which shouldn’t come as any surpirse to anyone who reads my reviews on a regular basis. But romance is a huge genre, so what are my favourite novels within romance? I have three:

Regency Romance

Regency Romance is set in England during the period of the British Regency—when King George III was deemed mentally unfit to rule, so his son (the future King George IV) was named Prince Regent in his place. A lot of Georgette Heyer’s novels are set in the Regency period, and it’s also the time when Jane Austen was writing and publishing. Regency Romance characters are often members of the aristocracy, so the stories are complete fantasy when compared to my way of life!

My favourite Christian Regency Romance authors are Julie Klassen, Kristi Ann Hunter, and Carolyn Miller.

Romantic Suspense

I also enjoy romance with a suspense or thriller element. The mix of romance and suspense provides the classic mix of internal and external conflict, and provides plenty of opportunity for the hero and heroine to get to know each other as they work together to solve the crime (or stop one happenning).

My favourite Christian romantic suspense authors are DiAnn Mills, Lynette Eason, Terri Blackstock, and similar authors.

Contemporary Romance

My absolute favourite genre is contemporary romance. But not just any contemporary romance. I like stories that are a realistic and even a little gritty, that show life like it is but still show the hope of Jesus. And a little comedy doesn’t hurt, as a way of diffusing tension.

My favourite contemporary Christian romance authors are whichever book I’ve read most recently. Kara Isaac, Bethany Turner, Jennifer Rodewald, Brandy Bruce, Carla Laureano, Tammy L Gray, Courtney Walsh, Amy Matayo … the list goes on.

What about you? What’s your favourite Christian book genre?

Let me know in the comments, then pop over to Australasian Christian Writers and share there!

First Line Friday

First Line Friday | Week 21 | The Carpenter’s Daughter

It’s First Line Friday, which means it’s time to open the book nearest you and share the first line. Today I’m sharing from The Carpenter’s Daughter by Jennifer Rodewald.

First line from The Carpenter's Daughter

It’s a great first line, and a great novel. I loved it. (Because this is me. Once I read a first line like that, I can’t stop until I read the last line, and all the lines in between.)

One thing that really got me was how well Jennifer Rodewald writes emotion. If you’re wondering how my own writing is going, it’s ground to a complete halt as I realise how much I’ve got to learn. You can blame Jennifer Rodewald for that. #SorryNotSorry

About the Book

One word can change a life.
Sarah Sharpe has grown up as a carpenter’s daughter, knowing only the rough and work-heavy world of her father’s blue-collar profession. Abandoned by her mother as a baby, she’s lived twenty-one years content to drive nails at her dad’s side. Following her father into the world of construction was a natural path, and she took it without a second thought. But a harsh comment about her “butch” appearance sends her on a search for identity.
Enter handsome and easygoing Jesse Chapman, the roofer she meets on her first foray into volunteer work for Homes For Hope. In every way, the quirky man is her opposite—confident, a people kind of guy, and most importantly, happy. His likable qualities continue to draw her in, and for some reason he keeps coming back to her. But they can’t be more than friends—he’s made that crystal clear. Except for a handful of times…and the confusion is driving her crazy.
Sarah’s quest for self-definition becomes more tangled than she ever imagined, and she discovers that the journey will take her deeper than clothes and makeup. Filling the void in her heart becomes an obsession she cannot escape. How far is she willing to go to discover who she really is?

Amazon US | Amazon AU | Amazon UK | Goodreads

Click the button to check out what my fabulous fellow FirstLineFriday bloggers are sharing today:

You can then click on the link which will take you to the master page, which holds all this week’s #FirstLineFriday posts.

And you can click here to check out my previous FirstLineFriday posts.

Share your first line in the comments, and happy reading!