Stephanie London led a life of comfort and ease in St. Louis before feeling inexplicably drawn back to her father’s roots in the tiny Southern town of Hope Springs. Charlotte Willoughby has lived there all her life and longs to make a new life somewhere else. Stephanie doesn’t know exactly what she’s doing there—or how to occupy her time. And Charlotte doesn’t understand why, despite her overbearing family and reminders of her failed engagement, she’s suddenly led to stay.
Despite its small-town charm, Hope Springs itself is at a crossroads. After a failed reconciliation attempt by two well-meaning pastors, the town is split along racial and cultural lines, with little hope for redemption.
When a terrible tragedy puts Hope Springs on the national radar, the entire town is tested, and both Stephanie and Charlotte feel their lives unraveling. In the midst of heartache, though, they’ll discover the true color of hope . . .
Objectionable:Rape, suicide, drinking mentioned, smoking mentioned, threatening someone with a gun, racial issues and prejudices.Cheating on someone (while dating them) and talk of an illegitimate child and the scandal surrounding it in the past.
Thoughts:This is such touching story that really expresses the need to see past the outside and the color of someones skin and truly love them. Like Jesus would. This sweet story set in a little NC town called Hope Springs where two families (black and white) are trying to bring two churches together in unity. A black church and a white church, but neither of the churches are all that excited. Along the way old secrets and prejudices are uncovered in the little town. Stephanie has just moved to Hope Springs to stay there while her husband goes back and forth to Haiti. She makes friends with an outcast, but really sweet girl, Samara. And the rest of the book is what happens resulting from these events. I think racism is wrong and this was a great book that showed how often the lines between skin colors is tightly drawn. This book shows a close family, a hurt girl who becomes even more hurt, anger and prejudices that shouldn't exists in churches and the hope of truly loving. Loving like Jesus would. This was a very good book, I really loved it. The characters were vibrant and reading this book made me happy and sad at the same time. Sad to read about things, that though they might be fictional, are still happening elsewhere in similar situations. This book isn't just a romance, although there are some sweet relationships going on...Godly ones too! This book has a meaning and it's deep too. I took a lot away from this when I read it and I really enjoy it. I would recommend to YA+ girls and women who are looking for enjoyable but substantial book to read.
Characters:Wow, this book had some great characters! I really liked Charley (Charlotte) and Stephanie, who were the main characters. They both were going through changes and trials and I felt like I could relate very well. I loved Samara. She was such a sweet character that you just fall in love with!! After the big spoiler (that I am not going to reveal) I was so mad, sad and pretty emotional. The author really did a wonderful job writing this book, it has a lot of power and a lot of thought changing put into it. During the time after the big spoiler you felt so angry and sad or at least I did. The author did a great job with Samara's character. The great Bible study group is another highlight int this book, one I really love. A bunch of ladies got together and had a Bible study where women of all ages and races came and discussed living the way God wants and how they could support each other. It was great. There was a bond and feel of family with many of the characters. They all melded into one big family, which kinda made sense as there was a big reunion going on for a good part of this book. :P
Cover:Although I don't feel like it directly relates to the book that much, I do like it. There is a feeling of hope about it you know? The colors are really beautiful too.
I was given a copy of this book by the publisher and the views I've expressed are my own.