by Charlotte Hubbard
GENRE: Inspirational Romance (Amish)
It’s been a year of tragic loss and difficult decisions for widow Rose Raber. She thought providing for her young daughter was the greatest challenge she faced. Until her dying mother revealed Rose was adopted—and her birth mother is someone with much to lose if the secret comes out. As Rose struggles to reconcile the truth with her faith—and her troubling curiosity—outgoing newcomer Matthias Wagler is another surprise she didn’t expect. His optimism and easy understanding inspire her. And his prospective partnership with wealthy deacon Saul Hartzler promises a possible new life for them—together. But with this second chance comes yet another revelation for all involved.
When Saul’s wife unexpectedly turns up at Rose’s new job, their bond as mother and daughter is instant and unmistakable. It isn’t long before an unforgiving Saul discovers the truth, threatening Matthias’s livelihood and Rose’s future. Now with more than just their happiness at stake, Rose and Matthias must find the strength and courage to stand strong—and trust God’s enduring miracles of motherhood, forgiveness, and love.
Pausing at the door of the downstairs bedroom, where Mamma was staying now because she could no longer climb the stairs, Rose nipped her lip. Mamma’s face and arms were so withered and pale. It was a blessing that her pain relievers kept her fairly comfortable. When Mamma realized Rose had returned, she beckoned with her hand. “Let’s talk about this before I lose my nerve,” she murmured. “There’s a stationery box . . . in my bottom dresser drawer. The letters inside it . . . will explain everything.”
Rose’s pulse lurched. In all her life, she’d never known Mamma to keep secrets—but the shadows beneath Mamma’s eyes and the fading of her voice warned Rose that this was no time to demand an explanation. Rose sat down in the chair beside the bed again, leaning closer to catch Mamma’s every faint word.
“I hope you’ll understand . . . what I’ve done,” Mamma murmured. “I probably should have told you long ago, but . . . there just never seemed to be a right time—and I made promises—and your dat believed we should let sleeping dogs lie.”
Rose’s heart was beating so hard she wondered if Mamma could hear it. “Mamma, what do you mean? What are you trying to—”
Mamma suddenly gripped Rose’s hands and struggled, as though she wanted to sit up but couldn’t. “Do not look for her, Rose. I—I promised her you wouldn’t.”
Rose swallowed hard. Her mother appeared to be sinking in on herself now, drifting in and out of rational thought. “Who, Mamma?” Rose whispered urgently. “Who are you talking about?”
Mamma focused on Rose for one last, lingering moment and then her body went limp. “I’m so tired,” she rasped. “We’ll talk tomorrow.”
Rose bowed her head, praying that they would indeed have another day together. She tucked the sheet and light quilt around Mamma’s frail shoulders. It was all she could do. “Gut night, Mamma,” she murmured. “I love you.”
She listened for a reply, but Mamma was already asleep.
Kensington (March 28, 2017)
ISBN-13: 9781496708441 •• ISBN-10: 149670844X
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AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Many moons ago—like, in 1983 while she was still a school librarian—Charlotte Hubbard sold her first story to True Story. This launched her into writing around seventy of those “true confessions” stories over the years, and she’s been a slave to her overactive imagination ever since. Over the course of her writing career, she has sold nearly 50 books—most recently, Amish romance series she’s written as Charlotte Hubbard or Naomi King.
Charlotte lived in Missouri for most of her life, so her Amish stories are set in imaginary Missouri towns. These days she lives in St. Paul, MN with her husband of 40+ years and their Border collie, Vera.
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