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From the Ground Up by [Van Wyk, Jennifer]
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From the Ground Up Kindle Edition

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Length: 288 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product Description

Tess & Barrett Ryan have been married for over twenty years. They’re both hopelessly in love with each other. Have been since they were just seventeen years old. But lately, they feel disconnected. They don’t get time together to go on dates much less bedroom time. Date night no longer consists of the woo. He can’t remember the last time he had his wife to himself. She can’t remember the last time she felt adored. As much as he un-derstands that she’s feeling unappreciated and generally unneeded as his wife, he feels the same. They’re struggling in a way they never imagined when they began their rela-tionship all those years ago.
It seems that their lives won’t slow down and change isn’t going to happen un-less they make it. Together they realize they’ve put them first for far too long and in the meantime forgot what made their house a home to begin with. Will a week in a remote Michigan cabin be enough to remind each other what they built their lives upon? How do they fall back in love with each other when they never fell out of it in the first place?

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 708 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Blue Tulip Publishing INC (6 February 2017)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01N4WKATY
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #37,061 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Format: Kindle Edition
Tess and Barrett were high school sweethearts. They've been married for over twenty years and have four kids. They have a large and busy family. While Tess and Barrett are still as much in love with one another as they used to be when they first met, they are struggling. There isn't much time for them to be together, they aren't going on dates like they used to, they don't surprise each other anymore and they hardly have the chance to give each other physical attention. Because of this they're out of sync and something needs to be done before their problems become unsolvable, but what can they do when they can hardly ever find the time to be on their own without any interference?

Tess and Barrett love their kids and they are a happy family, but lately they're only a mother and father and not two people who are having a close relationship. Something has to be done or Tess and Barrett might lose everything they hold dear. They're very much in love, but they need to get the chance to show it to each other. Will there be a solution to their problems and if so, will they manage to save the special bond they have?

From the Ground Up is a beautiful romantic story. I'm a big fan of books about true love and this is definitely a great one. Tess and Barrett are both kindhearted and supportive. They're taking care of the people they love, they are always there for anyone who needs their help and they throw amazing parties. They are sweet and loving parents and their children have a safe, warm and welcoming home. Due to all of their duties Tess and Barrett can't find a way to connect any longer and my heart ached for them, because they're obviously missing their alone time. I enjoyed reading about their deep feelings for each other.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I've been familiar with the name Jennifer Van Wyk for some time now. If you're like me and read the acknowledgements section of books, or even the names mentioned on title pages and dedications, you might have seen it too. Up till now those credits have mostly been for editing, but seeing as how she's written her debut novel, I decided to give it a look.

I'm glad I did.

Unlike so many though, From The Ground Up is not a tale of a couple falling in love, nor is it even a second chance romance where a couple who once broke up try to put things back together. Instead, and perhaps more challenging because of it, it's the tale of a couple who, after twenty years together, have hit a rough patch in their relationship.

In a story that's as real as it gets, amid the day to day of family life with a kid in college, two others in high school and the little one still climbing into bed with mommy and daddy in the middle of the night, Tess and Barrett come face to face with the realization that their relationship is no longer what it once was.

Despite the fact that neither of them want to give up on something they've cherished. Something that's integral to each's own sense of identity, they're left at a loss. How to fix it? How to even find the smallest amount of time amid the hustle and bustle to work on their relationship, particularly since what's been lost is the sense of closeness, the intimacy, sexual and otherwise that makes you feel like you're an essential part of someone else's life?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars 49 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully real and breathtakingly honest! 8 February 2017
By B from Prisoners of Print - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
4.5 Stars - Jennifer Van Wyk delivers all the feels with her debut novel, From the Ground Up! Sweeping me up in Tess and Barrett’s love story from the very first page, this sweet, real-life romance quickly stole my heart. High school sweethearts Tess and Barrett are all grown up and the stress of work, married life, and raising children has taken its toll on their relationship. With a lifetime of love to fight for, this couple was ready to do the work and it was this unpretentious storyline and unwavering loyalty that had me so hooked on these two. Tess and Barrett’s connection was palpable. There was something magical about the way they loved each other so fiercely and without reservation for most of their lives that spoke to me, gave me hope for a lasting happily ever after and left me rooting for this memorable couple. Balancing out all of the simple sweetness was a sense of humor that had me laughing out loud and just enough steam to leave a grin on my face. From the Ground Up is the complete package - genuine, hopeful and easy to connect with.

One of the things I loved most about this book was how distinct Tess and Barrett’s personalities were. They were very much a couple who knew each other inside and out and that understanding of one another came through loud and clear, painting a vibrant and oftentimes hilarious picture of these two characters. However, I also appreciated the struggle Jennifer Van Wyk put her characters through. Knowing each other so well had made them complacent and I enjoying seeing them try to rekindle the sparks that come from getting to know someone for the first time. As Tess and Barrett got reacquainted, the reader was privy to every nuance of their relationship and what made them such a fantastic couple. The connection I formed with Tess and Barrett as I read this novel was decidedly intimate, a product of the rare and breathtaking look at their most private insecurities and fears. By the time all was said and done, I was deeply invested in this couple and sad to see this story come to an end.

While I don’t read a lot of stories where the characters have already fallen in love, From the Ground Up definitely opened my eyes to an entirely new kind of romance. Not only did I experience the ups and downs of fighting for a love you’ve already found, but Jennifer Van Wyk ensured that readers got to fall in love for the first time alongside this fantastic couple as pieces of their teenage love story were revealed in parallel to the reality of married life and parenthood. The pacing in From the Ground Up is a little slower since the feelings behind this story are already established and deep which means there isn’t a lot of explosive, heated drama. However, there is definitely plenty of intrigue and a colorful cast of secondary characters that made this story absolutely shine. I absolutely adored the ease with which this story was told. Every emotion rang true and I could feel how much heart and soul went into this book. Jennifer Van Wyk is definitely an author to look out for. Funny, captivating and beautifully written, From the Ground Up is a poignant reminder of what it takes to love for a lifetime.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, refreshing, unique story about growing old with your true other half 8 February 2017
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Jennifer Van Wyk delivers a unique and refreshing story about a couple who could very well be any of us. Or our friends, neighbors, siblings or parents. They’re real, they’re raw, they’re beautiful.

Barrett and Tess have been together since they were teenagers. With four children and the craziness of daily life, they somehow lose each other. It’s something that happens to all (or most) married couples at some point in their relationship. We become so absorbed in the different roles we play that we forget the connection that drew us together. The never-ending demands of children, work, and home life take priority, to the point we forget that at some point we wanted all this. We wanted the high paying job, the kids, the big house with the big yard. And the person we promised to devote ourselves to become strangers, sometimes even the enemy. We’re no longer man and woman, partners in life, but slaves to the lives we dreamed about.

Being married for twelve years now, this story was deeply personal. Like Tess and Barret, my husband and I have never stopped loving each other. But there was a point in our marriage that we stopped having fun. When the stress of everything was overwhelming. Finding each other again has been one of the greatest adventures, and Van Wyk captured those emotions in this story.

Van Wyk did an incredible job bringing these characters and their feelings to life. From the Ground Up isn’t just a story, but a journey that will stay with me for a lifetime. I lived Tess and Barret’s life right along them. I smiled, felt torn apart, and smiled some more.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 shining stars! 8 February 2017
By Mrs. J - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The market is full of various types of romance novels, but From the Ground Up was such a refreshing change of pace. Yes, I love a good billionaire or sports story, but Tess and Barrett could be me and my husband. We celebrate 15 years of marriage this year, and it's not always been easy. It was so wonderful to relate to characters who have experienced the same challenges and emotions. Simply put, From the Ground Up made me feel like I wasn't alone. That my marriage was normal. That just because I got married young didn't mean we would grow apart. Ms. Van Wyk, thank you for writing a story that resonated so deeply with me!
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm an Ohio girl through and through and for obvious reasons I don't even like reading the word Michigan 6 August 2017
By Kaitlyn Reister - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
First I just have to say, I'm an Ohio girl through and through and for obvious reasons I don't even like reading the word Michigan. That being said, if I got to meet this amazing family and friends with them I'd move there in a heartbeat! And that's saying something. Ok, I'm done being goofy now!

Tess and Barrett were amazing in A Better Place, yes I read them out of order and of course had to go back and see where it all started. This family, this amazing family! I love them more than I did when reading and meeting James and Carly. The dynamic of these guys, just gah!! Life has a way of not always being what we want it to be. Tess and Barrett learned this. Sometimes you lose sight of what really matters. But the journey? Jennifer made the journey of Barrett and Tess one of the sweetest and most amazing I have ever read.

Life, it's what you make it. Tess and Barrett definitely know how to make it. Their family, their friends, them. It is without a doubt one of the greatest love stories I've ever read. It's real, it's raw, it's what life is. Love and life is messy. But it's beautiful. Tess and Barrett are the epitome of this. Love perseveres. Love wins. Family matters. Oh, and the kids in this family and their friends? You don't want to miss it! Coke is just like his old man, Grady would do anything for anyone, Maggie is just plain sweet, and Harper goodness you'll love her. And just ok I'm done rambling. This story! I'll shout about it from the rooftops! It's one that needs to be read! You'll love it as much as me!! ❤️
5.0 out of 5 stars I loved the sound of this book 29 June 2017
By Jessica Davey - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved the sound of this book! There aren't many books that deal with already married couples who lose the spark so when I read the description of this book I jumped on it.

Being that they are married, we see a side of them that isn't really shown in romance novels. Yes this couple are in a rut, but you see and feel their love! Barrett is an amazing husband and father. He's a hard worker and snarky, but in a great way. Tess is a typical mom, she loves her kids no matter what and I loved that. She was funny and I loved seeing a different side come out of her.

I loved the plot! The first half is them going about life, knowing something is off with their marriage but still not dealing with it. The second half is them working hard to repair what they feel is broken. Both parts made this story what it was.

Overall, I loved it. It was so different then what I've read in the past and now I find my self wanting to read more like it. The author has a real talent for making reader feel what the characters are feeling and making us root for this couple to overcome things. It's light on the drama which I loved! I can't wait to see what else she writes. She definitely blew me away with her first book! I'm intrigued by Tess's brother even though we only saw a little of him. I hope we get his book soon. 5 stars #2OCCJD

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