The Dragons of Alsace Farm, by Laurie L.C. Lewis
2016, 302p, Clean Contemporary Romance
My Rating=4 Stars
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the author, which did not affect my review in any way
Fears and secrets are the dragons we each must face. . .
In need of his own redemption, Noah Carter finally confronts his childhood hero, the once-beloved uncle who betrayed him. Instead of vengeance, he offers forgiveness, also granting Uncle John a most curious request—for Noah to work on the ramshackle farm of Agnes Deveraux Keller, a French WWII survivor with dementia.
Despite all Agnes has lost, she still has much to teach Noah. But the pair’s unique friendship is threatened when Tayte, Agnes’s estranged granddaughter, arrives to claim a woman whose circumstances and abilities are far different from those of the grandmother she once knew.
Items hidden in Agnes’s attic raise painful questions about Tayte’s dead parents, steeling Tayte’s determination to save Agnes, even if it requires her to betray the very woman she came to save, and the secret her proud grandmother has guarded for seventy years.
The issue strains the fragile trust between Tayte and Noah, who now realizes Tayte is fighting her own secrets, her own dragons. Weighed down by past guilt and failures, he feels ill-equipped to help either woman, until he remembers Agnes’s lessons about courage and love. In order to save Agnes, the student must now become the teacher, helping Tayte heal—for Agnes’s sake, and for his.
This story deals with three characters: Noah, whose Uncle John is looking for him to return to his farm so they can patch up their relationship; Agnes, John's elder neighbor who has dementia and needs help with her farm; and Tayte, Agnes's granddaughter who wants to form a relationship with her grandmother while she still can. Noah and Tayte have each had a rough life, and actually have a lot in common, but they rub each other the wrong way when they first meet. They both have ties to Agnes so they decide to try a little harder to get along, but there are some missteps along the way. All the characters are real and flawed. There are lots of secrets and more to each character than first meets the eye. I enjoyed getting to know each of them. This is a slow building story, which is quite emotional at times. There's heartache and betrayal, as well as love and healing. I thought it was compelling and complex and is a great read for those who enjoy character driven stories. This is the first book I've read by this author, but it won't be the last!
Laurie (L.C.) Lewis began her career under contract with Covenant Communications in 2004, moving to Walnut Springs Press in 2010, during which time she published seven books. Her eighth novel, "The Dragons of Alsace Farm," her most recent release, debuted in July 2016. it was inspired by her family's experiences supporting a loved one with dementia. She calls this book a four-year love project.
While Laurie Lewis is best known for her much celebrated historical fiction series, "Free Men and Dreamers," she writes different genres under several pen names--general fiction as Laurie Lewis, historical fiction and suspense as L.C. Lewis, and she will be assuming another pen name for a pending romance novel she's contracted for Gelato Books' "Destination Billionaire's Series."
Laurie Lewis love to hear from her readers.
"Thank you so much for visiting my author page and looking over my titles. Reviews are the best way to acknowledge a book you enjoy, so if you're so inclined, please let others know how you felt about my books via Amazon, Goodreads, or shout out about my book on Facebook. Feel free to mail me at email@example.com. I love to chat! My official web site can be found at www.laurielclewis.com, and I hope you'll stop by the newsletter link and sign up for news on projects and free books!