Contemporary Fiction, Review

The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck by Bethany Turner

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The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck by Bethany TurnerBecoming a Christian is the best and worst thing that has ever happened to Sarah Hollenbeck. Best because, well, that’s obvious. Worst because, up to this point, she’s made her very comfortable living as a well-known, bestselling author of steamy romance novels that would leave the members of her new church blushing.

Now Sarah is trying to reconcile her past with the future she’s chosen. She’s still under contract with her publisher and on the hook with her enormous fan base for the kind of book she’s not sure she can write anymore. She’s beginning to think that the church might frown on her tithing on royalties from a “scandalous” book. And the fact that she’s falling in love with her pastor doesn’t make things any easier.

With a powerful voice, penetrating insight, and plenty of wit, Bethany Turner explodes onto the scene with a debut that isn’t afraid to deal with the thorny realities of living the Christian life.

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My Thoughts

Let’s kick things off with a few confessions:
I want to join Sarah’s book club.
I want to be Sarah’s friend (and Piper’s friend, too!)
I do NOT want to read Sarah’s first book ???? (eeep!)
I do want to read whatever she comes up with next!

It’s really too bad that Sarah is a fictional character because I would love to sit down and chat with her (well, chat again because we did have a lovely visit HERE)!!! I feel like we have so much in common (with a few exceptions like the divorce and scandalous romance novel things)!

On the surface, readers might expect The Secret Life of Sarah Hollenbeck to be a flirty, fun romantic comedy and they’d be right except this story is more than Hallmark-ish feel-good fluff!!! (nothing wrong with Hallmark or fluff but that certainly helps explain the abundance of exclamation points and the length of time I’ve struggled over this swoof…!) Attraction, dating, evangelism, grief, loss, gossip, LIFE and FAITH… it’s all packed between those adorable covers!

Sarah Hollenbeck is a hilariously authentic brand new baby Christian and her honest navigation of this crazy thing we call life will appeal to unbelievers, encourage new Christians, and remind seasoned believers to keep hold of that “first-love” faith. I highly and enthusiastically recommend this story and eagerly anticipate future works by this author. Commence book stalking!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher and was under no obligation to post a review. The opinions expressed are my own.


About the Author

Bethany Turner is the director of administration for Rock Springs Church in Southwest Colorado.

A former VP/operations manager of a commercial bank and a three-time cancer survivor (all before she turned thirty-five), Bethany knows that when God has plans for your life, it doesn’t matter what anyone else has to say. Because of that, she’s chosen to follow his call to write.

She lives with her husband and their two sons in Colorado, where she writes for a new generation of readers who crave fiction that tackles the thorny issues of life with humor and insight. For more, visit her website.

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Bethany Turner Sarah Hollenbeck: character spotlight + giveaway


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