The focus of the novel is Evie Bennett, Cody’s mother. As Cody leaves home to marry Raine, so Evie’s home feels empty. Even Diva the dog moves out with Cody. Evie feels lonely. All her life, hopes and dreams have been tied up in Cody. Now she must learn to live life for herself, but how?
Evie has been a widow for thirteen years. Her husband Max’s death was her defining moment, from then onwards Evie’s life has been on hold. Evie has lived with one foot in the past, clinging to her memories. “The memories can comfort us… or we can hold them so close, so tight, there isn’t room for anything else.” Evie needs to release her hold on the past. Fear has kept her rooted there. Evie trusted God with her past. Now she needs to trust Him with her future.
Jack is new to Banister Falls. He and Evie met briefly in book one during a blessing burglary. Now he works at the church. Jack is a fairly new Christian. He has a past but God has given him a new life. Jack practices the gift of hospitality, as people wander in and out of his apartment. He always has enough food for just one more person.
Evie has had a ‘safe’ life, mixing with similar people to herself in her neighbourhood and church. Knowing Jack, opens Evie’s eyes and life up to new people, all very different from her. Her horizons broaden as her preconceived ideas and prejudices diminish.
The novel has a wonderful sense of community. Homes, lives and the church are opened up to others. Life is meant to be lived with one eye on God and one eye on our fellow humans. Evie and Gin met in book one and are very different people but “the thread that bound them together – their love for their children – had proven stronger than their differences.” Strong friendship bonds can be formed between the most unlikely of people if we just keep our eyes and hearts open, and our prejudices closed.
Kathryn Springer shows how damaging addiction can be and how far reaching its affects are. Escaping to another town is not the answer. “A change of scenery doesn’t change a person on the inside. Only God can do that.” Seeking help from others only works if the person wants to be changed. Sometimes all we can do is to commit a person to God and trust Him with their lives. As Coop says “sometimes the best way to fight is on your knees.”
As with the first book in the series the reader meets the teenage parents to be Cody and Raine. Once again there is no condemnation of the pair. They are surrounded by love. Their unplanned baby is being greeted with joy and love. Kathryn Springer demonstrates once again, that in all circumstances it is important to love.
I really enjoyed The Hearts We Mend and am hoping for more books in the series. I am not ready to say goodbye to Banister Falls.
Give yourself a treat and download a copy today.
I received this book for free in exchange for a fair and honest review. No monetary compensation was received and all views expressed are my own.