Unique settings make for stand out novels, and Anne Mateer’s novels are no exception. This is the third novel of the four that are published that I have read. The first one incorporated a woman who wanted to fly. The second, a female protagonist destined for auto racing. This novel places her heroine as the coach of girl’s team for the growing sport of basketball.
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**I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review**
From characters, to tension, to strong themes, Anne Mateer’s novel, Playing by Heart, will probably be one of my favorites. With The Great War looming in the background, spunky and determine Lula Bowman is trying to make a new name for herself and remain entrenched in the manly field of mathematics. But feeling her sister’s needs, she takes a step away from her plans to help out with her sister’s family which brings her back to her hometown and a reputation she didn’t want to be remembered for.
Chet Vaughn is also trying to stay away from parts of his past. Constantly feeling like a failure to his mother, he feels that it is his responsibility to stay home to take care of her while most of the other men in town, including his own brother, are enlisting.
Between Lula’s determination to get back to the plan she set out for herself and Chet feeling strongly about doing the right thing, they get tangled up in their feelings for one another and their dreams crumble before them. At this point, the strongest theme of the novel shines: that often, God has something bigger and better in mind.
The main characters were quite well developed, and the story kept moving. I had a constant need to know what would happen next. If you like a novel with a unique setting and authentic characters, this would be a great book to add to your bookshelf.
I would love to hear from you! What novels have you read that put characters in unique situations?
For more on the author or this book, please check out the following links:
- Anne Mateer’s Website
- Visit Anne Mateer on Facebook
- Follow Anne Mateer on Twitter
- Read what Anne Mateer is reading on GoodReads
- Check out Playing by Heart on Amazon
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