Because it’s not always love at first sight!
When her mother died from pneumonia, Penny Cartwright was heartbroken. But now, after burying her younger brother just 12 years later, she is devastated. Anger, guilt, and sorrow cloud Penny’s mind, and the last thing she wants is to be reminded of her pain—but that’s exactly what happens when a stranger comes to town.
Trevor Reynolds has been chasing fame for more than a dozen years, but his musical career can’t get off the ground. While on the road, an accident kills his young drummer, Brad Cartwright. Trevor wasn’t behind the wheel, but he still blames himself . . . and so does Brad’s sister, Penny. Now Trevor finds himself in Kings Meadow, determined to follow through on his final promise to his friend.
Still feeling the pain of Brad’s death, Penny and Trevor must learn that forgiveness is the only thing that can heal their hearts. And if they do forgive, something beautiful may rise from the ashes of heartbreak.
Keeper of the Stars incorporates some unique elements that really made this book stand out for me. For starters, Penny’s brother Brad remains an extremely compelling secondary character, despite the fact that he’s… well… dead. Robin Lee Hatcher wove his perspective into the story through the use of flashbacks that give the reader such poignant insight into his relationships with Penny, Trevor, and God. Glimpses into emails exchanged with his father Robert added depth to their relationship as well.
Perhaps the most powerful flashback is our picture into Brad’s final day and the prayer on his heart. But what touched me most deeply were the scenes between brother and sister – their close friendship evident even from young ages. It reminded me of my relationship with my own brother and enabled me to see Penny’s grief in a more empathetic way than I might otherwise have done.
Another thing I loved about Keeper of the Stars is the mentoring that takes place between Robert and Trevor. So often in Christian fiction, we see male leads of either solid, mature faith or brand-new faith. Both of those are great, of course! But we rarely see the growth process. I can think of a couple of other examples (Varina Denman’s Justified, Victoria Bylin’s Until I Found You) but it’s rare. Here, we are able to watch Trevor as he navigates the newness, with Robert building off what Brad started – which I find to be just the sweetest thing ever. THE FEELS!
Finally, the romance is a slow build. Another rarity in romantic fiction in general, but one I found refreshing. (Don’t get me wrong … I do adore the intensity of “instant attraction” but occasionally I like the change of pace.) One could argue that it had been going on since even before they met, albeit one-sided. And that just added to the melt-into-a-happy-little-puddle factor for me.
Bottom Line: This final book in Robin Lee Hatcher’s Kings Meadow Romance series is a beautifully composed harmony of forgiveness, faith, and falling in love. With elements to the story that you don’t see in every other book, Keeper of the Stars provides a unique read that still leaves you wrapped in a comforting cloak of familiarity. If we must say goodbye to Kings Meadow, Trevor and Penny’s story – and Brad’s too, in a way – is the perfect farewell.
(I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review.)
My Rating: 4 stars / Loved it!
KissingBook Level: 3 / May forget to breathe on occasion
About the Author:
Best-selling novelist Robin Lee Hatcher is known for her heart-warming and emotionally charged stories of faith, courage, and love. The winner of the Christy Award for Excellence in Christian Fiction, the RITA Award for Best Inspirational Romance, two RT Career Achievement Awards, and the RWA Lifetime Achievement Award, Robin is the author of over sixty novels.