Mortified after her semester abroad is cut short, Amelia Christiansen returns to Deep Haven, certain she isn’t brave enough for the adventures she’s dreamed of. The last thing she expects is for the man who broke her heart to cross the Atlantic and beg forgiveness.
Heir to a European hotel dynasty, Roark St. John has trekked from one exotic locale to another, haunted by tragedy and the expectations that accompany his last name. Amelia is the first woman to give him a reason to stop running. He’ll do anything for a second chance—even contend with Amelia’s old flame, who is intent on sending Roark packing.
While on surprise after another leaves Amelia reeling, Roark’s continued presence only highlights the questions pursuing her. Like him, is she running from the life God has called her to? Could finding her new place mean leaving home behind?
The Wonder of You is the fifth book in Susan May Warren’s Christiansen Family series, coming after Take a Chance on Me, It Had to Be You, When I Fall in Love, and Always on My Mind. Because it has been quite a few months since I read the first four novels, I cannot accurately tell you which one is my absolute favorite, but I do know that When I Fall in Love was by favorite before, and I absolutely LOVED The Wonder of You. So, I’m going to say both of those are my top two. I’ve been a huge fan of Susan’s for a long time now, so I knew I would enjoy The Wonder of You, but I didn’t really expect it to knock my socks off just as well as it did. It was a good thing I was sitting in a comfortable chair the whole time I was reading it, because I seriously almost needed a fainting couch for ninety percent of the story. When I wasn’t yelling at certain characters to stop being so thickheaded, that is.
Amelia Christiansen’s story was touched on a little bit at the end of Always on My Mind, and believe me, it had me dying to read all about it as soon as I could. Unfortunately, it took me this long to get around to it, but let me tell you, it was definitely worth the wait. Amelia is exactly like I imagined she would be, a beautiful, spunky dreamer who has all the fire inside her that her hair makes you believe she would be filled with. At the same time, however, she struggles with insecurity, fear, and doubt that keeps her from really being able to fly. I love how real and raw and honest her character is, even though I wanted to throw a book at her head many times when she wasn’t being very understanding or spent too much time with the wrong guy, rather than the perfect man.
Roark St. John. He is the perfect man. Although he makes mistakes, just like anyone else, he is the main reason for most of my swooning throughout this book. He really does love Amelia, though he sometimes found a funny way of showing it, and I fell for him because of it. Plus, I just loved his little British expressions! They were so wonderful to read, and really helped to portray him as a character. Anyway, I really loved the way he truly fought for Amelia, even when she didn’t want him to and when he was chased away, and I couldn’t handle the way he eventually overcame all his shortcomings, all of his self-doubts, to really be the hero she needs.
One of my favorite parts of this book was the fact that Susan also picked Grace and Max’s story back up, which was clearly one of my favorites (they were the main characters of When I Fall in Love). Their love story still had to overcome the hurdles of Max’s insecurities and fears of loving someone only to leave them caring for him when he succumbed to the disease he knew all too well was coming, and I loved getting to pick back up on how Grace puts his doubts to rest. And then everything that happens with little Yulia—don’t worry, I won’t say another word so I don’t spoil anything—but let’s just say, it definitely made me cry. Susan absolutely made the right call when she added more of their story to Amelia and Roark’s.
Anyway, I absolutely adored this novel; the ending the most actually, and cannot help but give it all five bookshelves and a place on my all-time favorites list. It is sweet, it is maddening, it is swoon-worthy, and it is one of the best novels I have ever read. I know I won’t be forgetting this amazing piece of heaven any time soon, that is for sure and for certain. I HIGHLY recommend you go pick up this novel as soon as possible, once you read the first four that is. One thing about this series, though it makes it even more perfect, is the fact that I really believe you should read them in order. If you don’t, you won’t be able to truly grasp all that is the Christiansens. So, go devour the first four, then melt your way through this one, and maybe you’ll be done just in time for the release of Owen’s story, You’re the One That I Want.
To see where I’m linking up, check out my Where I Party page.
All credit for the italicized synopsis goes to Susan May Warren and Tyndale House Publishers.