Joline has fallen as far as any women can.
Jo’s lofty dreams of love and luxury evaporated when her ne’er-do-well husband left her pregnant and alone. After a series of increasingly bad decisions, Jo finds herself at a crossroads: swallow her pride and seek refuge at her sister’s home or risk losing her infant son.
She chooses the first option, even though she knows the man she’s running from will come after her, and she needs to move farther away. To earn money for the journey, she goes to work for her estranged husband’s brother, Baron. But Jo has a long list of secrets she’s keeping from Baron—namely her son, Jamie.
Jo intrigues Baron, and he finds himself falling in love with her. But when he discovers she’s his brother’s castoff, he closes his heart. Baron has been cleaning up his younger brother’s messes most of his life, and Jo is one mess he refuses to tackle.
All too soon, Jo’s past catches up with her, and she realizes the disaster she’s made of her life. Is it possible that God can redeem a woman who has fallen as far as she has and give her hope and peace for a happy future?
Joline’s Redemption is the second book in Vickie McDonough’s Land Rush Dreams series, coming after Gabriel’s Atonement. Although I really enjoyed Gabriel’s Atonement, I have to say I loved Joline’s Redemption all that much more. I got a taste of Joline’s story mixed into Gabriel and Lara’s—obviously since Joline is Lara’s sister she was mentioned, but part of the drama of her story was perfectly set up in Gabriel’s Atonement—and I knew immediately that I would enjoy reading about how her life ended up playing out. As I began reading Joline’s Redemption, I realized I was right to anticipate her story, and I was hooked by almost the first page.
Joline is definitely a relatable, loveable character. Although she wasn’t my favorite in the previous book, simply because she had one nasty attitude when it came to her older sister Lara, she is definitely a character worth loving in her own novel. Despite her past mistakes, she only longs to make life better for herself and her son, Jamie, and therefore strives to turn her life around and come back from her past. What makes her the most relatable, however, is the fact that she continually berates herself for the bad decisions she once made. Though that is not something we as people should do since God forgives and forgets as soon as we ask, it is such an easy habit for us to fall into. Anyway, I really loved Jo, and I also loved the way she and Baron interacted, even before she decided not to be afraid of him.
Baron is such a polar opposite from his brother! I’ll let you figure that one out for yourself, but let me just say, if they didn’t look alike and I wasn’t clearly told by Vickie in the book that they were brothers, I would never have believed it. Baron is such a wonderful, upstanding man who would never do anything to hurt anyone, which makes him completely different from his brother but absolutely perfect in his own right. The only thing I didn’t like about him was the fact that he initially saw Jo as one of his brother’s messes. That is the last thing that she is, even though she does have a bit of a past and it is pretty much his fault, Jo is not anyone’s “mess”. Baron made a mistake in viewing her that way, and his impatience at having to deal with his brother’s messes doesn’t give him any more right to do so. All in all though, Baron really is a great guy, and you truly get to see that as the book comes to an end.
Because this was such an intriguing book, with romance, suspense, and even a little bit of mystery, I happily give it all five bookshelves. I really, really loved the ending, and the whole story really, and am so glad I own a copy so that I can read it again soon. And I cannot wait for the final book in the series, Sarah’s Surrender, which releases sometime next year! I highly recommend this novel!
I received a copy of this book from Barbour Publishing in exchange for my honest review.
All credit for the wonderful photo goes to my sister Allie, whose blog you can check out here.
If you want to see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.
All credit for the italicized synopsis goes to Vickie McDonough and Shiloh Run Press.