Blog Tour Review: Love Arrives in Pieces by Betsy St. Amant

Love Arrives in PiecesLove Arrives in Pieces 
by Betsy St. Amant
Christian Contemporary Romance
Paperback, 320 pages
June 9th 2015 by Zondervan


Summary

For so long, Stella was known for her beauty. Now, with her heart stripped bare, she must discover who she really is.

Former pageant queen Stella Varland doesn't trust beauty anymore after her divorce. Her appearance betrayed her and led to her brokenness so instead of being beautiful, now she tries to make beautiful things, but always falls short. So she keeps her passion for her secret art to herself and focuses on her interior design work. But if she doesn't get another job soon, she ll be stuck living with her parents.

Contractor Chase Taylor is determined to live a life of no regrets after losing his fiancee in a car crash. Now he lives life at full speed, striving to see how much he can accomplish. He knows if he slows down, he ll fall apart. So he returns home to Bayou Bend to renovate the town s old theater, and is shocked to learn former flame Stella is the designer for the project.

Forced to work together, Chase and Stella battle their chemistry and their pasts as they struggle to compromise and come together on a vision for the theater. Chase doesn't understand why Stella is such a subdued version of herself, while Stella doesn't get Chase s constant need for productivity and speed. Their wills clash as they attempt to hide their brokenness and their unresolved feelings for each other until Chase breaks through Stella s walls and convinces her to enter her mosaic tile art in a contest.

A near catastrophe, a fire, and a small-town gossip mill finally force both Stella and Chase to realize that they have a choice to hold on to the shards of their pasts, or surrender their fragmented pieces to the One who makes a beautiful masterpiece from the broken.

  

My Review

I fell in love with Love Arrives in Pieces from the first page. The complex characters. The emotion. The chemistry. The heartbreak. I felt it all as I delved into this story about Stella and Chase. Their mistakes and losses. Their hopes and dreams. And their journey, both for themselves and each other, as well as the way God worked to heal their hearts.


I remembered Stella from the first book in this series (even though they can be read by themselves and aren't grouped into a series), All's Fair in Love and Cupcakes. Her sister, Kat, was the main focus of that first book. We see the beginning of Stella's story there when her sister first finds out that life wasn't as perfect as she thought. I didn't actually like Stella a whole lot in that first book, but like her sister, I didn't know all that was going on. In Love Arrives in Pieces Stella's heart is finally laid bare. To be honest, it broke my heart and I became invested in her story and wishing that she would find herself and her own happily ever after. It comes through family, an interesting homeless woman, God, and Chase Taylor.

Thank goodness for Chase. He brought some honest good sense. He didn't let Stella continue to hide by bringing her out of the stale nothingness of life she had turned to. He also brought quite a bit of humor. I loved the chemistry, the romantic tension, and foremost the friendship between these two. They both had some serious challenges from their past that they were working through. I loved how Chase loved Stella's broken pieces, but also saw that she clung to some of them because they had become comfortable instead of fighting the fear of the unknown in beginning to truly heal.

There were some inspirational moments as well as both Chase and Stella seek guidance and healing. It didn't feel preachy. There were some interesting moments with one quirky, but very genuine, homeless lady, which also added some humor. I felt like it all worked in the story and felt authentic, which I always appreciate in Christian fiction.

Here's a quote that stuck out to me from the book:
     But God said "Even though."
     . . . Even though she had no idea what her future held, He didand His Word promised there would be purpose for all the pain. Even though there were storms, there were plenty of puddles to stomp.
     Even though she'd been brokenshe was healing.
     And it was beautiful.
(p. 283)
If you enjoy reading Christian romance I'd definitely recommend Love Arrives in Pieces. I loved the friendships and the family dynamics, the restoration of the old theater, the characters, and so many other things. It touched my heart, brought out all the emotions, and made me commit to more puddle jumping in my own life.



Content: Clean

Source: I would like to thank Zondervan and Litfuse for my complimentary copy, which did not affect my review in any way.

About the Author

Betsy St. Amant

Betsy St. Amant lives in Louisiana with her young daughter and has a heart for sharing the amazing news of God's grace through her novels. A freelance journalist, Betsy is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. When she’s not reading, writing, or singing along to a Disney soundtrack with her daughter, Betsy enjoys inspirational speaking and teaching on the craft of writing.

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