Thirty-something Joan Nelson has more to contend with than a biological clock or an identity crisis. Despite her ardent belief in a conventional marriage, she finds herself deserted for a younger, slimmer woman. Lacking any skills or education, she's thrust unprepared into the nightmare challenge of making a living for the first time in her sheltered existence.
A job as a receptionist in a law firm is the first rung on the ladder to her independence. Yet the taste of success sours when Joan considers the emptiness of her personal life. How can she reconstruct her damaged life and heal her bruised ego? Ill-equipped for the singles scene, she embarks on a confusing, sometimes frightening, new lifestyle.
When Joan stumbles on a crime perpetuated by a charming cad, she must defy her boss, jeopardize her newly won stability, and reject her friends. Her namesake, Joan of Arc, provides a model of courage and insight. If she risks danger and uncertainty, will she discover that independence and adulthood can be both enjoyable and fulfilling? Does optimism beat pessimism? Who would have dreamed her final victory could solve a childhood puzzle while it brings her true love?
|Publisher:||Inspired Romance Novels|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.64(d)|
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Joan Nelson’s ex-husband, James, drops a bombshell. He needs her to sell their house because his girlfriend is pregnant. This is the final blow to Joan, who wanted a child from her marriage to James, but it never happened. Reeling from the divorce, she learns to cope with doing things for herself. She has no college degree, has a low level job in a law firm, and struggles to exist. She’s lost in her own world of hopelessness but her friend, Delores, who works in the cafeteria of the building where the firm has its offices, is more than willing to draw Joan into the dating game. They visit art shows, outdoor concerts, and even try a night out dancing. Joan has an overwhelming crush on one of the lawyers, Scott, who rents space at the office. She wants to appear attractive but cookies and ice cream have been her friends since the divorce. One evening during one of her downward spirals, Joan watches a movie about Joan of Arc and then and there Joan Nelson decides she can conquer anything. An old friend from high school, Kevin, shows up at her door. Kevin is a realtor. She is always thrilled to see Kevin, but her fondness for him waivers when she learns James has sent him to sell the house. Kevin is James’ friend but he’s Joan’s friend, too. She lets Kevin help her list house and when he shows her an apartment for rent in his building, they become neighbors. Joan relies on Kevin for everything from exercise classes to overflowing water heaters. She keeps telling herself he’s a friend and she even asks Kevin how she could win over the lawyer she’s lusting over. Kevin is patient and kind most of the time but everyone can see he’s in love with her, everyone but Joan. Then disaster strikes at the office. Someone is getting into the company files after hours. All fingers point to Joan as she is the newest employee. Her arch rival, both at the office and in the jousting of approval from Scott, Kimberlee, seems to be doing her best to implicate Joan. With Kevin’s never ending support, Joan has lost weight and even tried out for the company skit. She secured the leading role only to hear rude comments from Scott and Kimberlee during practice. Kimberlee warns Joan she doesn’t know what she’s getting into with Scott. Even through tight security, the files continue to disappear and Joan asks Davis, a computer geek, who she and Delores met while out dancing, for assistance. With approval from one of the partners in the firm, Mr. Horowitz, Kevin, Joan, Delores and Davis set up a sting operation to catch the culprit. Will Joan catch the criminal and discover she can stand on her own two feet? Will she understand her experiences with men started long ago when a piece to a childhood puzzle is revealed? Does Joan realize love is waiting where she least expects it?
I had two reservations about this book before I began reading it. The first was the title, which initially didn’t appeal to me and the second was seeing it written in present tense. I felt the writer would not be able to sustain that throughout. How completely wrong I was – on both counts! The title is a brilliant choice – but you’ll have to read the story yourself to discover how clever it is, and the use of the present tense is a genius stroke. It’s the mark of an exceptionally good writer, beautifully sustained throughout, keeping events and dialogue immediate and the heroine larger than life in front of our eyes. I’d die happily if I could write like this! Another truly excellent quality of this story is the witty, intelligent humour and writing style. Humour (sorry, humor) pervades every page – it’s dry, it’s wry – it had me giggling so much on the train one day this week that at the end of my journey, a fellow passenger nudged me and asked me if I wouldn’t mind telling her what I was reading that was so good. Now any London commuter will know what an accolade that is! A Saint Comes Stumbling In is almost a coming of age story, in that the heroine, Joan, never had a chance to discover herself and grow up in the normal way. Married to her one childhood sweetheart, she let him dominate her life…until he decided to move on to pastures new, leaving Joan stranded and alone on life’s confusing highway. We follow her bumbling, stumbling progress through that difficult first year of her abandonment and watch her grow (and shrink) along the route. It’s impossible not to love her more with every page we travel into her life and heart (to which she, incidentally, seems to be a complete stranger!) If I tried to summarise the story, I’d be bound to spoil it for others and I’d hate to do that. It’s too good a story and too delightful a journey for me to ruin it for you - you must make this one on your own. I promise you, it’s a journey you won’t regret taking. Bonnie McCune is a truly talented and refreshing new writer. I will be reading everything she writes from now on. Her first novel is superb and I cannot recommend it highly enough.
A Saint Comes Stumbling In is an entertaining, laugh-filled read. When Joan Nelson embarks on single life after her husband and high school sweetheart dumps her for a younger, flashier model, she is determined to meet challenges head on, like her namesake Joan of Arc. Easier said than done. Aided by a diverse group of engaging friends, she tests the waters of the single scene--including sweating through aerobics classes, a hilarious evening of bingo, causing havoc in a dance club and going camping for the first time --and plunges into a job as a secretary at a law firm, where she becomes embroiled in an office conspiracy. Throughout the story, Joan evolves from a timid, unsure woman into a confident female, willing to laugh at herself, take chances and reach out for love. Joan's story is told with humor and empathy. Joan feels real. She has flaws, makes mistakes, learns from them and grows. I look forward to reading more books by Ms. McCune.
A Saint Comes Stumbling In was a lighthearted, easy, and fun read. Joan is a woman fresh out of a divorce from the only man she has ever had a relationship with, and this novel reveals her transformation from someone timid, passive, and rejected to confident, powerful, and happy. She makes all the mistakes a romantically and sexually immature woman can make along the way, including not embracing herself as good enough and not seeing what a catch was right in front of her in the form of her friend Kevin. Ultimately, though, she finds love with him - the last man she expected to think of in a romantic way. More importantly, she gains a sense of self and much-needed courage, confidence, and tenacity that will see her through the rest of her life as a strong woman. Readers will nod knowingly as they read through all the groan-worthy moments Joan endures - often at her own hand - and feel almost vindicated once Joan evolves into the complete and endearing person she is at the end of this novel. Peppered throughout is office intrigue, a fun best friend who pushes Joan into new things, and lots of lots of singing. A Saint Comes Stumbling In made me feel proud to be a strong woman, and glad that love was shown as it really is: connecting with someone who allows you to be yourself, for better or worse.