Thursday, December 31, 2015

The Wedding Chapel by Rachel Hauck

The Wedding Chapel

by Rachel Hauck  

In a day when marriage seems incredibly disposable, USA Today best-selling author Rachel Hauck weaves a story rich in symbolism that reminds us of timeless truths about love. Hauck is captivated by the 1940s, and in The Wedding Chapel, she juxtaposes two story lines: one capturing the simple romance and commitment to family embodying the earlier era and another showing the challenges and complications of romance in a modern world.

For sixty years, a wedding chapel sat silent, waiting for love. But times have changed and the hour has come when it just might be too late.
Retired hall-of-fame football coach Jimmy "Coach" Westbrook never imagined anything would come of his labor of love---the wedding chapel he built for Collette Greer, the woman he fell for back in '49. But now an offer has come to turn the chapel into what it was meant to be---a place for love---and Jimmy sees no reason to hang onto his dream any longer.
Photographer Taylor Branson is trying to make a life for herself in New York. Leaving her hometown of Heart's Bend, Tennessee, she put a lot of things behind her, including her family's abysmal marriage rate. But love surprises her when she falls head-over-heels for Jack Forester, a top ad man. Their whirlwind romance results in an elopement, and a mountain of doubt. Jack, while genuine in his love for Taylor, can never seem to overcome his own demons to find the words of his heart.
When Taylor takes an assignment in Heart's Bend, the job does more than send her back to her hometown, but into a world of family secrets buried beneath the sands of time.
When Taylor's journey intersects with Coach's, they rediscover the heartbeat of their dreams and that the love they long to hold is right in front of them. And worth every waiting moment.
 Meet the Author
Rachel Hauck is an award-winning, best selling author of critically acclaimed novels such as The Wedding Dress, Love Starts with Elle, and Once Upon A Prince. She also penned the Songbird Novels with multi-platinum recording artist Sara Evans. Booklist named their novel Softly and Tenderly one of 2011 Top Ten Inspirationals. She serves on the Executive Board for American Christian Fiction Writers and is a mentor and book therapist at My Book Therapy, and conference speaker. Rachel lives in central Florida with her husband and pets.

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Here is my review of this romantic read:

First, I would like to extend a heartfelt “Thank you” to Rachel Hauck and her publisher for sending me a copy of "The Wedding Chapel" to review for them. I am truly grateful for this generosity. I really appreciate the time, effort and expense it takes to make a reviewer copy available to me.

In “The Wedding Chapel” by Rachel Hauck, two love stories are showcased: one over the last 50 years and one beginning in the present day.  These stories of redemption examine whether true love is worth fighting for.  The relationships begin very differently.  Jimmy and Collette were high school sweethearts way back when.  Taylor and Jack had a whirlwind romance.  Neither of the marriages is perfect, but the couples must decide what is important: honoring God or giving up.

This was a difficult novel for me to engage.  I didn’t invest in the characters right away and actually put the book down for several days to read other things.  I only picked it up because I promised to read and review it.  Normally, I really enjoy Rachel Hauck’s books, but this one was a lot of work.  Multiple points of view and two different eras are written about and sometimes the transitions feel choppy.  I would blame that more on my own inability to engage the story rather than Hauck’s writing.  I’ll have to shelf it for a while and try reading it again in the future.

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