“Heart of the Country” by Rene Gutteridge and John Ward

One would think that Luke Carraway had it all.  Born into an uber-wealthy New York family, he was denied nothing.  A deep restlessness kept him discontent, however, and after marrying Faith, he left the family business and struck out on his own.  When his new dealings go sour, however, his marriage fractures along with every other aspect of his life.
 
When Faith leaves New York, she heads home to North Carolina, unsure of how to handle this next stage in her life.  What she finds there shocks her, however:  an angry sister, a sick father, and the ever-present memories of her mother, who died tragically.  With both families in turmoil and their marriage on hold, can Luke and Faith find their way back to each other?
 
Heart of the Country is a twist on the story of the Prodigal Son.  With Luke and Faith fiercely in love but with a both of them having a history of running from their troubles, how can their marriage survive?  It is hard to forgive others for hurting us but even harder to recognize the pain that our actions cause others, and yet in this story that’s what Luke and Faith are both asked to do.  
 
Told in first person from several different characters, this is not a fluffy beach read but a snowed-in by the fireplace tearjerker.   Once begun, you won’t want to stop – the Carraway story is completely compelling, though I must admit to being more attached to Faith than to Luke.  
 
The history of this novel is an interesting one – John Ward originally wrote it as a screenplay, and Rene Gutteridge wrote that as this novel.  Rarely am I interested in seeing a movie after reading the book, but this will be an exception.  I can’t wait to see how all of this emotion is symbolized on-screen.
 
Heart of the Country is available now as an e-book.  If you purchase it for $2.99 by March 15th, you will receive a code to enter the “Star for a Day” Contest. The grand prize winner and a guest will be flown to the set of the Heart of the Country film, stay in the cast hotel, and get the full movie-set experience with all the other cast members. They will have a star trailer, go through wardrobe, makeup, and hair, and have a speaking part in a scene of the movie Heart of the Country!   Read more about the contest here.
 
If you’re interested in seeing the other viewpoint in things, in forgiveness and redemption, in becoming a man and staying faithful to the one you have, in horses and love songs and glittery views, don’t miss this book.  
 
I received a free e-copy of Heart of the Country in exchange for an honest review.
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