Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The Shadow of Your Smile by Susan May Warren

The Shadow of Your Smile 
by Susan May Warren
Deep Haven series, Book 5
Contemporary Christian Fiction / Romance
Tyndale House Publishers
Available December 16, 2011
384 pages

About the Book
A beautiful blanket of snow may cover the quaint town of Deep Haven each winter, but it can’t quite hide the wreckage of Noelle and Eli Hueston’s marriage.

After twenty-five years, they’re contemplating divorce . . . just as soon as their youngest son graduates from high school. But then an accident erases part of Noelle's memory. Though her other injuries are minor, she doesn’t remember Eli, their children, or the tragedy that has ripped their family apart. What’s more, Noelle is shocked that her life has turned out nothing like she dreamed it would. As she tries to regain her memory and slowly steps into her role as a wife and mother, Eli helps her readjust to daily life with sometimes-hilarious, sometimes-heartwarming results. But can she fall in love again with a man she can’t remember?

Will their secrets destroy them . . . or has erasing the past given them a chance for a future? Read the story behind the story here.

For details on a contest going on (for just a few more days), check out this post.

My Thoughts
My Foolish Heart (another book in the Deep Haven series) was my first introduction to Susan May Warren. I couldn't get enough of it. So I was thrilled when I learned that The Shadow of Your Smile was coming out. I was not disappointed!

Eli and Noelle's marriage is falling apart when Noelle is in a serious car accident. When she comes out of her coma, she thinks she is back in college . . . remembering neither her husband nor her three children nor anything that's happened in the last twenty years. It may be the second chance that Eli and Noelle desperately need.

Sounds pretty good, right?! Well, throw in a secondary plot (or really a second primary plot) featuring Eli and Noelle's son and a hometown girl running away from her past, and it's doubly good!

Warren weaves the two stories together beautifully. Since much of the tragedy in their lives is shared, it doesn't come off as two separate stories, but rather as two stories that are closely linked. Themes of forgiveness, faith, and second chances make this an emotional read. By the end, I was a complete mess . . . in the best way!

There's a part in the book describing a person's last minutes before death and they begin describing what is happening to them and say something along the lines of hearing the joy of heaven. That part of the book was not a major part of the storyline, but I got chills and could hear a song running through my head that made me think of the joy of heaven. It was just so realistic to me. Anything that can give me chills and actually HEAR something (that isn't there) is pretty awesome writing!

Susan May Warren does everything right with this book . . . the characters, the writing, the emotional punch. I wasn't ready for the book to end when it did. [5 stars]

Thanks to LitFuse Publicity, Tyndale House, and Net Galley for providing a free review copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest review.

About the Author
Susan May Warren is an award-winning, best-selling author of over twenty-five novels, many of which have won the Inspirational Readers Choice Award, the ACFW Book of the Year award, the Rita Award, and have been Christy finalists. After serving as a missionary for eight years in Russia, Susan returned home to a small town on Minnesota’s beautiful Lake Superior shore where she, her four children, and her husband are active in their local church.

Susan's larger than life characters and layered plots have won her acclaim with readers and reviewers alike. A seasoned women’s events and retreats speaker, she’s a popular writing teacher at conferences around the nation and the author of the beginning writer’s workbook: From the Inside-Out: discover, create and publish the novel in you!. She is also the founder of, a story-crafting service that helps authors discover their voice.

Susan makes her home in northern Minnesota, where she is busy cheering on her two sons in football, and her daughter in local theater productions (and desperately missing her college-age son!) A full listing of her titles, reviews and awards can be found at her website.

Susan May Warren Online
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  1. I like your review, and putting it within your own comment box!
    I would like to read "Your Foolish Heart" too as I have not read any of the Deep Haven novels. I would like to become acquainted with the community and how a previous book might show how friends join in with this family's healing process in "The Shadow of Your Smile." I would like to read both books!

  2. My Foolish Heart! Sorry got mixed up on the title.

  3. Hey Lane - Thanks so much for stopping by! Be sure to enter the contest that Susan May Warren is hosting. It ends tomorrow, but one of the prizes is the entire collection of Deep Haven novels. You can find the link to the contest on a previous post:


I love comments! Thanks for letting me know what you think!

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