Magnolia Marovich is a meteorologist who lost her father, a river bar pilot, in Hurricane Katrina. Now another hurricane is bearing down on the Mississippi and Alabama coasts, and she receives a phone call that calls her home—her sister is in hospital, and Maggie is needed to take care of Cammie’s daughter, and their elderly aunt.
Josh Bergeron has followed in the footsteps of his teenage idol, Mr Marovich, and become a ship’s pilot—a decision that cost him his relationship with Maggie. But now they are brought back together when she returns to her childhood home in Ocean Springs … next door to where he lives with his son.
I loved Magnolia Storms. I think I read it all in one sitting (or I would have if my family hadn’t tried to talk to me). Magnolia was an excellent character—an intelligent and competent professional woman, but not perfect. A long way from perfect. But someone I could like and relate to and want to spend time with.
Josh (great hero name, by the way) was an equally strong character. He’s a boat pilot, and it was great (if scary) to see him in action in his work. He was also an excellent father—a testament to his relationship with Mr Marovich, because his own father was nothing like that.
The writing was excellent, and I especially liked the humour, and the way both Maggie and JD had a Christian faith that was central to the plot without being overwhelming or preachy. Okay, so maybe the end was a little cheesy, but this is a romance. It’s to be expected. There was also a lot of yummy-sounding Southern food like etouffee and beignets.
Recommended for fans of contemporary Christian romance, with an emphasis on the Christian. Thanks to the author for providing a free ebook for review.
As I read this book, I often had the words of that well-known hymn circling round in my head:
“Will your anchor hold in the storms of life, When the clouds unfold their wings of strife? When the strong tides lift and the cables strain, Will your anchor drift or firm remain?” Maggie Marovich knows all about storms—both literal and figurative—but she’d rather avoid them altogether than rely on an anchor. Wouldn’t we all?! She’s faced the loss of both of her parents, and when her best friend and the love of her life refused to give up his dream of piloting ships—the very job that cost her father his life—she walked away, losing him, too. Now her sister Cammie faces the prospect that she might never walk again. Why has God abandoned her? Why does it feel like he ignores her prayers?
Josh Bergeron has often regretted not being there for Maggie after her father died. After all, he knows all too well what it feels like to be abandoned. But he’s never regretted becoming a ship pilot. Now he has the chance to be there for Maggie as she struggles to care for her sister’s ten-year-old daughter and their eight-five-year-old Aunt Ruth, keep her sister’s antique store running, AND prepare for the hurricane building off the coast. But watching Maggie with J.D. revives all the dreams he once had for them, and this time she’ll be breaking two hearts when she inevitably leaves again. Unless he can convince her to give them another chance...
It was all too easy to identify with Maggie. She’s loyal, compassionate, and resilient (some people might call it stubborn!), but she’s driven (or perhaps held back) by self-preservation, and nothing sends her into self-preservation mode like being around Josh Bergeron. The emotional and romantic tension crackled between these two every time they were on the same page. Josh’s adorable three-year-old son J.D. was a different story, though. He won Maggie’s heart from the get-go, meaning her wall of self-preservation was often going up and down around Josh like a malfunctioning portcullis!
Maggie has little choice but to accept Josh’s help, and as they work together she begins to learn what it means to have a Comforter and a Saviour who will be an anchor through life’s storms; to take one moment at a time, to count her blessings amidst the storm, and to see that God can work good in and through all situations.
An engaging and enjoyable read!
I received a copy of this novel from the author. This has not influenced the content of my review, which is my honest and unbiased opinion.