10 June 2015

Review: Married 'til Monday by Denise Hunter

Not Your Typical Christian Romance

Ryan and Abby McKinley divorced three years ago, but Ryan is still in love with his wife. A chance telephone call from her parents provides him with the perfect opportunity to spend time with Abby and try to find out what went wrong. He and Abby embark on a road trip to visit her parents for their wedding anniversary … with Ryan tagging along because Abby never told her parents she was divorced. Hmm …

It’s tempting to think Ryan is too-perfect. After all, he’s the perfect gentleman, a strong Christian, loves and supports his family, and spends hours working with his high school football team to teach them about both football and life. But he has one fault: he takes everything at face value and doesn’t see beyond the obvious (something I’ve found is common to the male of the species). This is illustrated early in the book when he’s thinking his younger sister, PJ, “had always led a charmed life”: anyone who has read the earlier books in this series will know that’s not exactly true. As we find out, you can’t take everyone at face value in life or in marriage.

Abby first appears to be normal, but as she takes her unplanned and unwanted road trip with Ryan, we (and Ryan) gradually discover that her normality is a fa├žade that’s so well constructed even Abby doesn’t understand it’s there. It’s a powerful story with lessons for all couples, married or not, and I especially liked seeing a Christian romance novel showing that love and romance is about more than the wedding—it’s about the marriage, and the baggage and brokenness we each bring into that relationship.

I’ve been looking forward to reading Married 'til Monday since I finished the third book in The Chapel Springs Romance Series and realised the fourth story was going to reunite Ryan and Abby. It didn’t disappoint me. I’ve enjoyed all four books, but I think my favourites are this and Dancing with Fireflies, because they both step out of the Christian norm in terms of plot, while still delivering a strong Christian message. Recommended.

Thanks to Thomas Nelson and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review. You can find out more about Denise Hunter at her website.

This book counts towards my 2015 Reading Challenge as A book I can finish in a day. Yes, that's most good books, but I picked this because I was so keen to read it, and it more than lived up to my expectations. 

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