When Aven Norgaard leaves Norway to serve as housekeeper to her late husband’s cousins in Appalachia, she expects lads in need of care, not three grown men—each in need of a wife and bound by a powerful brotherhood. As the men carve out a living by brewing artisan liquor, young Haakon’s pursuit tempts Aven’s lonely spirit . . . but it is his deaf brother, Thor, whose silent strength shows her the depths of real love.
Unable to speak to any woman, Thor Norgaard never anticipates Aven will befriend him, let alone treat him as her safe harbor. Though hard cider is their livelihood and his greatest talent, he fights his way to sobriety with Haakon’s help, defying the bottle for Aven’s hand—only to face a battle of the heart that tests even the strongest bonds of brotherhood.
This is going to be a gushy sort of review because I just cannot help myself. Last year I read my first Joanne Bischof book, The Lady and the Lionheart. Words cannot express how much I loved that book. I still love that book. It was one of my favorite books last year. I have been anxiously awaiting this new book for months and I finally, finally, got to sit down and immerse myself in it. I say immerse because Joanne Bischof has a way of writing that pulls you in and makes all your senses come alive. It's effortless on my part- I just start reading and I'm in. It's so fantastic.
This story is rich and thick, layered and dynamic. I just loved how I felt a part of everything that was happening. I saw, felt, heard, and tasted. My personal investment in this book increased with every page I read. The characters were complex and flawed with purpose and energy. Ugh. I really, really loved it.
This book leaves me with many questions regarding Haakon. I'm hoping that his story will be coming next but honestly, I don't care what story comes next as long as a story comes. I'm already in.
If you haven't read a Joanne Bischof book, do yourself a favor and pick this one up. Or The Lady and the Lionheart. (which is still my favorite, even though I loved this book too)
Content: alcohol addiction, some violence, a scene with unwanted sexual advances (that may be a trigger for some people), racial tension, abuse (that you know about and see evidence of, with no details), light Christian elements- characters attend church, pray.
- I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher at my request. All opinions expressed are my own.