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Waiting for Morning (Forever Faithful Series #1)

Waiting for Morning (Forever Faithful Series #1)

4.5 50
by Karen Kingsbury

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Hannah Ryan is the mother of two adorable little girls and the wife of a doting husband. Her life is perfect -- until the night her husband and eldest daughter are ripped away from her by a drunken driver. Torn by grief and rage, Hannah finds her faith -- like that of Jeremiah weeping over Jerusalem -- tested to the limits. As she walks the long road of her own modern


Hannah Ryan is the mother of two adorable little girls and the wife of a doting husband. Her life is perfect -- until the night her husband and eldest daughter are ripped away from her by a drunken driver. Torn by grief and rage, Hannah finds her faith -- like that of Jeremiah weeping over Jerusalem -- tested to the limits. As she walks the long road of her own modern-day Lamentations, she must learn to forgive... and finally discover that God's mercies truly are new every morning. Sometimes the road home is only found by letting go.

Product Details

The Doubleday Religious Publishing Group
Publication date:
Forever Faithful Series , #1
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 8.22(h) x 1.00(d)

Read an Excerpt

A drunk driver, a deadly accident, a dream destroyed….

The scene seemed to unfold in slow motion, and from the diner where she stood, there was nothing Rae McDermott could do to stop it. The two vehicles careened toward the intersection, then collided. The impact was so explosive it was surreal, like something from a violent action movie. The Explorer spun off the ground in a cloud of dust and glass and shredded metal, and Rae watched it sail across the street and wrap around a utility pole a hundred feet away.

"Dear God," she whispered. She dashed across the diner, grabbed the telephone and dialed 9-1-1.

Only Jenny saw it coming. There was no time to scream, no time to warn the others …. One moment she was looking at Alicia, asking her about Mrs. Watson's English class, and the next, in a mere fraction of an instant, she saw a white locomotive coming straight at them, inches from Alicia's face.

There was a horrific jolt and the deafening sound of twisting, sparking metal and shattering glass. Jenny screamed, but it was too late. The Explorer took to the air like a child's toy spinning wildly and twisting unnaturally before coming to rest.

Then there was nothing but dark, deadly silence.

That night, somewhere between lying awake and falling asleep, Hannah moved her leg and in the process slid her foot under a section of the covers that was weighted down with a heavy book she'd tossed there earlier. Still, for an instant the weight wasn't a book at all. It was Tom, his leg comfortably stretched across the sheets just inches from her own. Hannah stirred and the weight remained. She enjoyed the feeling of Tom's leg on hers, heavy and warm. Suddenly a realization pulled at her. If his leg was here, that meant -

"Tom?" She sat straight up in bed and breathlessly peered through the darkness. Then slowly, as she had at least ten times before, she realized who she was and where she was and what her life had become.

She was a woman alone who had lost everything.

And tomorrow was Christmas.

Jenny narrowed her eyes and studied the stack of sweaters on the closet top shelf. She spotted Alicia's sweater almost immediately and took it gently from where it lay near the bottom of a stack.

She held it up and she could see Alicia, grinning and challenging her to a foot race at Winter Camp last year. Jenny took the arms of the sweater and pulled them around her neck. She held it that way for a while, desperately wishing that Alicia still lived inside it. Her fingers brushed over the soft blue cotton, and she felt the tears again. She folded the sweater gently, tucked it under her arm and moved quickly for the door, suddenly motivated to get to school and log onto the Internet. Her mind traced the electronic paths to the suicide web sites she'd found earlier. Information that would help her resume the most important task of her life.

Finding a way to join Daddy and Alicia.

The bottle was more than half gone, and Brian felt himself losing consciousness. The room was spinning faster, and he closed his eyes. Suddenly a loud noise pulled him from his stupor. This time when he opened his eyes, he saw something that sent a surge of bile into his throat.

Right in front of him was the blond girl and her father, their car wrapped around the utility pole. Only now the girl was crying and Carla was standing over her, trying to help her breathe. In an instant they all turned on him, glaring at him, hating him.

"Go away!" Carla shouted and she ripped the gold hoops from her ears. "You're a murderer and a liar and a loser. I hope you rot in prison."

As quickly as they'd come, they faded away and he could see more clearly. … There was a strange noise, like air leaking from a rubber tire. He tossed the bottle aside and looked up.

Demons filled the room before him.

Dripping blood and spewing venomous taunts and accusations, they crowded in around his face. He swung at them, shouted at them to stay away, but they drew nearer still, hissing and smelling of death and sulfur. They were carrying something, and Brian saw that it was a rusted, black chain. Before he could get up or run away or close his eyes, the demons bound his wrists and wrapped his arms tightly against his body.

He was utterly trapped, and the demons began hissing one word, over and over. Brian's heart beat wildly and he struggled to break free. What was the word? What were they saying? The nose grew louder, each word a hate-filled hiss.

Finally Brian understood.

Forever. Forever, forever, forever.

He was trapped. The demons had him and they would hold him forever.

He wanted to break free, to scream for help and chase the demons away before they killed him. But instead he felt his insides heave. Once, twice, and then a third time, until it seemed his stomach was in a state of permanent convulsion…

Brian woke up, face down in a puddle of pasty vomit, his entire body shaking violently from fear and alcohol poisoning. The room smelled like rotten, undigested food and urine. He noticed his pants were wet, and he realized he must have soiled them. His head throbbed and he recoiled as he touched his hand to his hair. It was matted with crusted vomit. Suddenly he remembered the hissing creatures. Using only his eyes, he glanced from side to side.

The demons were gone.

But they would be back. He knew with every fiber in his being that it was so. He struggled to his feet, wiped the vomit from his eyes and nose so he could breathe better, and staggered toward the phone.

It was time to call the Bible lady.

Matt faced the jury squarely and slid his hands into his pockets. His voice was strong, but Hannah thought his eyes looked damp as he continued. "What happened to Hannah Ryan could happen to me - " he met their eyes - "or you. Any day. Anytime. Anywhere. …It's time friends, please. Find Brian Wesley guilty of first-degree murder, and let's put an end to this madness now. Before it's too late."

The judge finished giving instructions, and the case was handed over to the jury. After just two hours the foreman notified the clerk.

They had reached a decision.

What People are Saying About This

Karen Kingsbury

From the Author:

Waiting for Morning is the story of every mother's worst nightmare. Hannah Ryan's husband and oldest daughter are killed in a drunk driving accident. Ultimately, it is the story of hope amidst tragedy, forgiveness against all odds. I got the idea based on my friend, Julie, whose husband was killed by a drunk driver.

Joanna Lacy
Waiting for Morning is one of the most powerful books I've read other than the Bible.

Meet the Author

KAREN KINGSBURY is a USA Today and New York Times best-selling author, with nearly twenty million books in print.  Dubbed the "Queen of Christian Fiction" by Time magazine, Karen has written more than forty Life-Changing Drama, which encompasses the Redemption, Firstborn, and Sunrise series, as well as stand-alone novels such as Like Dandelion DustWhen Joy Came to Stay, and This Side of Heaven.  Karen and her husband, Don, live in the Pacific Northwest and are parents to six children, including three adopted from Haiti.  Visit her Web site at www.KarenKingsbury.com

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Waiting for Morning 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 50 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love all the Karen Kingsbury books. She is a very good author. Puts the love of God into every book she writes. Makes us realize that he is in charge of our lives. She keeps you thinking about your own life in every book she writes, you or I can crawl in the book and be the characters she is writing about. I would recommend this book and all of her books to anyone.
collegestudentforlife More than 1 year ago
Hannah Ryan waits at home for her family, her husband and two teenaged daughters, to return from a camping trip. But what she wants isn't want she gets. Instead, a police car pulls into her driveway, delivering to her the worst news a mother and wife could imagine. The aftermath of what has happened is simple: Hannah is full of rage and grief and makes it her missing to get revenge on Brian Wesley, the drunk driver who took her family from her. Somewhere along the way, she began to blame God, too, and now it's up to two people to bring her peace and forgiveness and closeness to God again. I haven't read a lot of Kingsbury, aside from one novel I reviewed almost a year ago, and I really liked it. So I was excited to get to review Waiting for Morning, and although it had its imperfections, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I think the characters are, for the most part, very real. What I thought Kingsbury did exceptionally well was make me feel strong emotion for the journeys that Hannah and Jenny had to face. I felt such sorrow for their loses, and there were times were I felt outright anger - especially at Hannah, when she was dealing with Jenny's struggles later in the novel. In that specific instance (and I don't want to be more descriptive in what I'm talking about, because I don't want it to spoil Jenny's path!) between Hannah and Jenny, I was so mad at Jenny, but I also pitied her because I could only imagine how caught up in her own narrow field of grief she was. What I thought was done well was the juxtaposition between grief and forgiveness. Hannah, and even Jenny, really had to struggle with these two concepts, and there are arguments that favor either - or both. But as readers, and the surviving Ryans, come to see, they can coexist, and there is power in allowing God to help you feel and live them both. Certain elements of the plot were predictable, and I did have to suspend my disbelief at someone of the ways Jenny was able to get away with what she did (computer searches would be more monitored and counselors and teachers at school would not have been so terribly oblivious to what was going on with Jenny), but I was willing to disregard those things for what was otherwise a fulfilling read. I received this book for free from Blogging for Books in exchange for a review. I was not asked to provide a positive review, just an honest one.)
TammyK1 More than 1 year ago
I love anything Karen Kingsbury writes. Haven't been disappointed even once. Keep writing, Karen!!!
JJN23 More than 1 year ago
Wonderful book! I could not put it down! I found it very inspirational and remembered the lessons held in it later on when I went through loss in my own family. I believe the Lord finds many paths to teach us what we need to know to prepare us for what lies ahead in our lives.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As i said i love kingsbury she is such a good writer i have read all three books in this searies i will forever love them and they will forever be my favorite books karen kingsbury will forever be my favorite author thanx keep making more awsome books karen :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Being a teenager, i really liked reading from Jennys perspective. They were both struggling with thier loss but hannah couldve paid more attention to jenny. It was an amazing book! Sad too though, i cried at some parts. -izzy
Kellie4 More than 1 year ago
Karen Kingsbury is one of my favorite authors, and I was thrilled to see a book available by her! Waiting for Morning was an amazingly written story about the power of forgiveness and God's mercy and grace. Tom Ryan and his two daughters, Alicia and Jenny are on their way home from a camping trip when they are hit by a drunk driver. Tom and Alicia are killed almost instantly, leaving Jenny and her mom, Hannah Ryan left to face the consequences of the drunk driver. Kingsbury delivers a powerful message throughout this story and writes with such passion that you feel you are part of the lives of the Ryan family. While Hannah struggles with her anger over the situation and her hatred for Bryan Wesley, her daughter struggles with the fact that she is left with a mom who just doesn't seem to care for her anymore. I recommend this book and any book by Karen Kingsbury. She gets you involved with each character and writes in such a way that you feel you know them personally. Kingsbury has written a powerful message on the implications of drunk driving, but even more powerful, the message of forgiveness not only for each other and our faults, but forgiveness from God. As part of the Forever Faithful series, this is book number one with two others that follow suit on how our Lord and Savior is first and foremost forever faithful in our lives.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Hi. I recived this book from my aunt during Christmas and the other two. I love this. I know this is going to sound mean but to tell the truth, I really didn't symphizize with the mom. But I DID symphizize with Jenny her daughter BIG time. I did feel like Jenny at one time. No, nobody from my family died, it was a time in my life where I just felt...worthless. I'm not going to go into detail about my life but. The second time I read it, I CRIED!!!! And I never cry during books! So if anyone of you people feel like ending your life, READ THIS PLEASE!! P.S. I'm not making fun of anyone.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i could really relate to this book my husband past away this year and i felt just like hannah so angry i wanted answers, neglected my children due to just being lost i felt so betrayed by god i want answers..to the author thank you for writing this novel i just can't explain it..you know about death but you just always think this could never happen to my family and when it does the pain is so overwhelming that i actually had to put the book down a couple of times because i felt the exact same way...please continue to write novels about real life...
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! Once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down. I finished the book in two days. It makes you think what kind of people are on the roads and what you could be faced with.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This story had me enthralled within twenty pages. I came face-to-face with the fears I have always had about the loss of my entire family. The book challenged and encouraged me. Far and away above most contemporary Christian fiction in both plot and composition.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MelissaF More than 1 year ago
I haven’t read anything by Karen Kingsbury in a couple of year so when I saw this book up for review (which is actually an older one of hers) I thought I would give it a try. This is a very moving story that have my heart aching and tears gathering very early on. The story touches on a subject that many of us struggle with: forgiveness. Hannah shows us how many of us can be. As long as everything is going great we love God and trust him, but as soon as something goes wrong we question His goodness and can even stop talking to Him. Have you been there? I have. If you are looking for a book that cuts to the core and will make you feel deeply this is a great book for that. I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.
Heart2Heart More than 1 year ago
Karen Kingsbury is one of the best authors I have come across and her books are quite literally life changing because they convey a situation no one wants to truly deal with and puts the reader in the drivers seat to take the wheel. In her latest novel, Waiting for Morning, it is every wife and mother's dreaded nightmare no one wants to have to face. Hannah Ryan is waiting for her husband and daughters to arrive home from their weekend camping trip. It is one that the three have taken as a way of bringing summer to a close and embracing another school year ahead for the teens. Only this time it would be different as two police officers arrive to tell her that there has been a car accident and that she needs to come with them. Brian Wesley has been trying to find a way out of the bottom of the bottle he runs to whenever his life gets out of hand. This is just another of those times. When he gets fired from his job as a mechanic due to trying to stay sober but falling behind in his workload. His boss even tells him that he worked better when he was drunk. Now Brian has to head home and tell his wife Carla that once again he's out of work. It wouldn't be too bad but with the birth of their newborn son, Carla had hoped that Brian might straighten himself out once and for all. She has given him an ultimatum this time, if he starts drinking again, she will leave him for good. He just can't go home without figuring a way out of the mess he has found himself in. In a series of divine circumstances, their two worlds will intersect and forever alter their lives. He just never dreamed that he was too drunk to get behind the wheel of his truck and head home. He had done it more times than he could remember and he had hoped it would be just like all the others. His truck went through a traffic light and he plowed into the Explorer that was carrying Hannah's family. The initial impact would send their vehicle mid air and land wrapped around a phone pole. Brian of course would walk away from this but those in the vehicle would not be so lucky and for Hannah, her faith will be tested like never before when she learns the outcome of this accident. Will she be able to trust God no matter what happens? She just hopes that this is a really bad mistake and her family is just late coming home with a reasonable explanation. I received Waiting for Morning by Karen Kingsbury compliments of WaterBrook Multnomah Publishers for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation aside from a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. This is such an emotional and heart rendering but honest novel. I think we all hope one day that we will never have to face the challenges Hannah has to in this novel, but because it pulls on our emotional heartstrings we can't help but be invested in this story to see how it all plays out. I believe this is a must read to anyone who wonders where God is in the midst of any situation where the outcomes is less than what we have prayed for and conveys a sense of hope that readers can relate to. It doesn't all come wrapped up in a pretty bow with a happily ever after ending and that is what makes her books so genuine and in demand. For me this one easily garners a 5 out of 5 stars in my opinion. This is the first book in the Forever Faithful Series!
SeasonsofGrace More than 1 year ago
This book has a much needed message for readers. That is one reason I am drawn to Christian fiction, the underlying message of the books. After Hannah's family has been killed by a drunk driver, she becomes hardened against God and refuses to forgive. Rather she chooses to devote her time to making sure the perpetrator gets punishment and her family gets justice. Meanwhile, a younger member of Hannah's family is suffering too, but feels like her pain is being ignored. While they are both hurting, they seem to be finding it hard to identify with the other one's pain. This book addresses so many issues - drunk driving, forgiveness, justice, mercy, grace, suicide, grief, faith in tragic circumstances. As Hannah tries to find a way to cope with her grief, she joins forces with MADD (mothers against drunk driving). There she meets Carol, a Christian woman, who also lost her husband to a drunk driving accident. Matt, the prosecutor is also a Christian, with many similarities in his background too. Each of her newly found friends, have walked the path Hannah is walking, and are working with Hannah and behind the scenes and to help her cope and renew her faith. Karen Kingsbury is an amazing author, and often writes about tough issues. What I liked about this book was the message. The importance of forgiveness, and a strong faith in God where He is the TRUE center of your world. Also, how forgiveness does not abolish the need for punishment - Matt the prosecutor strove for the toughest sentence on drunk drivers. The importance of recognizing all the hurting parties and the fact that each person grieves differently. Respecting their need to grieve and doing what you can to help them through the process. Hannah and other representatives of MADD use their voices and experience to make a difference. We can too, whether it is in a case like this, or just something else we have gone through or experienced. Our trials are not in vain, God has a purpose for them. I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest opinion.
VicG More than 1 year ago
Karen Kingsbury in her new book, “Waiting For Morning” Book One in the Forever Faithful series published by Multnomah Books takes us into the life of Hannah Ryan. From the back cover: “I’m afraid there’s been a car accident…” As Hannah Ryan waits for her family to return home from a camping trip, she realizes she has everything going for her—a husband other women admire, two charming teenage daughters, and a loving Christian home. As the sunny afternoon turns into twilight, her uneasiness grows along with the shadows. Then a car pulls into Hannah’s driveway, bringing two police officers…and devastating news that shatters her life forever. In the days that follow, Hannah struggles with unspeakable feelings of sorrow and rage—feelings that fuse into one chilling purpose for living: revenge against Brian Wesley, the drunk driver who has caused all her pain. In her fury, Hannah shuts the Lord out of her life. She’s determined not to forgive Wesley or the God who allowed this tragedy to happen. Can two caring people help Hannah rediscover her faith…before bitterness destroys her? Lamentations is not an oft-quoted book from The Bible as we tend to shy away from it because we do not like to lament because of the pain involved. Let’s face it at some point pain will visit all of us. Now, not all of us deal with pain and suffering in the same manner. For some of us there is the need to lash out, to try to make someone else feel pain, especially when they are the one who is the cause of our pain. The need for revenge. That is the story of Hannah. She wants the drunk driver who killed her husband and one daughter to pay and suffer like she is. The problem is not only is she blaming God for her troubles and shutting Him out but she is also neglecting her remaining daughter. This is an amazing story. Hannah is a likable character that doesn’t really know how to deal with the overload of pain and suffering. Hannah is a lot like most of us and it is almost a healing for us too as we read about her progress. Ms. Kingsbury has given us a great ride in this book and she has provided us with wonderful characters that we rally around and root for. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Multnomah Books. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
JuneMJ More than 1 year ago
This is a heart-wrenching story of one family's tragic loss at the hands of a chronic drunk driver. After the shock of the auto accident in which two of her family members were killed, wife and mother Hannah Ryan discovers the grim reality that many lives have been touched and changed by the thoughtless acts of individuals who drive while intoxicated. The novel documents Hannah's experiences with the police department, district attorney's office, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). Her relationship with her surviving family member suffers greatly during the period of time after the accident. Hannah's emotions bump along the track of an out-of-control rollercoaster, but in other ways she is numb. Numb to feeling anything but anger at her loss. And her anger is abundant . . . This is a powerful story on so many levels--spiritually, socially, and emotionally. The final chapters of the book are touching. This author does a masterful job at dealing with difficult issues honestly and frankly. Ms. Kingsbury's messages of forgiveness and faith while dealing with tragedy are poignant and well-written. {I will not forget the messages in this book for a long time.} I recommend this novel to fans of Christian fiction, clean fiction, and family fiction. NOTE FROM REVIEWER: I received a free paperback copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed here are entirely my own. I was not compensated to post this review here or on any other site. ###############
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another incredible book by KK!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love this book! Karen addresses the topics of grief and forgiveness when faced with an incredibly difficult situation. Make sure you have your Kleenex box handy - it's a tear jerker for sure!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was so inspiring and written so well, Recommend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a really good beginning of a great trilogy by a fantastic author!