Justified: A Novel

Justified: A Novel

by Varina Denman


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Award winning author, Varina Denman, returns with a new story of love and second chances for a young mother and the small town's beloved football coach.

In a small Texas town ruled by gossip, Fawn Blaylock believes others are justified in condemning her untimely pregnancy. Stifled by guilt, she yearns for grace while the local football coach treats her with gentle respect.

Justified perfectly captures the rhythm and romance of life in a small town, telling the unforgettable story of a woman searching for renewal, a man looking beyond what others see, and a community torn between judgment and love. It is the unforgettable story of broken dreams, second chances, and relentless hope.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780781412162
Publisher: David C Cook
Publication date: 06/01/2015
Series: Mended Hearts Series
Pages: 416
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Varina Denman enjoys writing stories about the unique struggles women face. She volunteers in her local home school cooperative where she teaches creative writing and literature. Varina resides in North Texas with her husband, five mostly-grown children, and a Pomeranian. This is her second novel in the Mended Hearts series.

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Justified: A Novel 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
Justified is the second installment in the Mended Hearts series. I thought this book was beautifully written and I think I enjoyed it more than the first book in the series, Jaded. I loved how the author used the power of forgiveness in this story.  Great book! 5 stars.
birdladyvm More than 1 year ago
Contemporary Christian Novel Although this is Book 2 of the series, Mended Hearts, it is a stand alone novel. However, I would suggest you read Jaded first, as it will give you an in-depth look at Trapp, its citizens and the Church in Trapp. This story will take us back to Trapp, Texas, small town America and it's still the same gossip laden town it was in Jaded. To give you some background, Fawn Blaylock is trying to put her life back together. Alone, pregnant, and almost penniless, she is befriended by Ruthie Turner, and Ruthie's family which includes JohnScott. JohnScott will become a major part of this book. Fawn's daddy, Neil, is the richest man in Trapp and an hypocritical Christian. Fawn had lived the life of privilege up to the point Neil found out she was pregnant. Fawn's pillar of the church family disowned her. She became a pariah, . Everyone expected her to marry the father of the baby, Tyler Cruz. Fawn has experienced his abuse and refuses. Fawn journey is one of broken dreams, second chances, renewal, acceptance, and redemption. She must recognize and conquer Tyler's attempts to manipulate her and the evil he can do and does in her life. Fawn has a hard time letting go of Tyler, even though, he abuses and lies to her repeatedly. Her father and Tyler are determined she will marry Tyler though hook or crook. She will learn to stand on her own feet, to recognize that the easiest solution is not the correct solution for her, and through it all God is always there ready to lead. We will watch her faith grow from a spoiled rich superficial believer to a real lasting belief in the goodness of God and his wishes for our lives. We see many of the cast of characters from the first book, Jaded; JohnScott comes into his own in this book. He will become Fawn's rock. Ms. Deman gave me a real shock when the high school lover and subsequent daughter of Clyde were revealed. I was amazed, I actually had to read it twice to make sure I had read it correctly. Ruthie and Dodd, of course, are present and just as much in love as ever and they stand firmly by Fawn. Ruthie, mother, Lynda will begin to join life again. I was so glad to see Lynda opening up, even she will stand by Fawn. The mystery of the relationship between Neil, Fawns mother, and Lynda is revealed. That was another shocker. Fawns journey from a superficial spoiled society girl was heart wrenching. She had to overcome so much, but this journey will be made with JohnScott right beside her all the way. Through all of her trials she will discover a love worth hanging on to in JohnScott, with Gods help she can make the right choices, and a life worth living as God intents us to live. Fawn will discover that God has always been with her, waiting for her to discover his presence. Ms. Denman has a knack for teaching life lessons without being condescending, pushy, or preachy. Her pacing of the plot and growth of the characters were spot on. The story held my interest from start to finish. I didn't want to put the book down. This is a wonderful story of love and faith. I can't wait for the 3rd books release. I highly recommend this book; Jaded and Justified are two of my favorite books, which I will read over and over. I received this book from the author, Varina Denman and Netgalley in return for an honest opinion.
Barb00 More than 1 year ago
Justified is my first book to read by Author Varina Denman. I enjoyed reading this book and even though Justified is Book Two in the Mended Hearts Series; I did not feel I had to read Book One first. There were a few times I felt the book was slow, but the author was great in her details and descriptions of the characters, settings and the drama. For me, I could easily picture what was happening in my mind as I was reading. The content of this book touched my heart. It's my understanding, there will be a Book Three in this series. I'm thrilled to have found a new author. I enjoyed reading Justified and thought it was a wonderful book. I'll be reading more of Author Varina Denman's books. I received a complimentary copy from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. This review is one hundred percent my opinion.
BethErin More than 1 year ago
Fawn Blaylock is a complex gal. She's grown up being the spoiled little rich girl in town but when she's faced with an unplanned pregnancy, she's determined to stand on her own two feet. Fawn begins to see her life from a new perspective and it changes the way she thinks about her parents, her relationships, her faith, and even herself. I won this book in a giveaway on Soul Inspirationz. The opinions expressed are my own.
lolly-pops More than 1 year ago
JUSTIFIED is book two in Ms. Denman's series set in Trapp, Texas, but it easily stands alone. Fans will want to read Jaded though, to read the story of Dodd and Ruthie and how they got together. I fell in lovve with JohnScott in Jaded, so I was glad to have him get his own story. Fawn had a definite time of growing up. Pregnant and kicked out, living off the kindness of strangers, ones she would've had nothing to do with in her former life. And the secrets - I pretty much guessed how the story would play out since I'm a writer, too, and know how it works, but seeing this character driven story work itself out through each of the tangled messes they found themselves in... Spellbinding. And even though I had plenty of things to do today I sat and read. I think Ms. Denman is well on my way to becoming a favorite author and I'm glad to have Jilted in my stack of books to read--next week. I can't wait. 5 stars for another awesome contemporary romance with plenty of twists and turns.
mackenzie_carol More than 1 year ago
Justified is the second book in Varina Denman’s Mended Hearts series, coming after Jaded. I read Jaded about a month ago and absolutely loved it—I cannot even describe to you how much I loved that book but it definitely made me a lifelong fan of Varina’s—and this book was just as good. It has just the perfect amount of sweet moments, parts full of the love and presence of God, and spine-chilling situations that kept me captivated from page one, which I fully expected. Have I already mentioned that I love Varina’s writing? Because I do, very, very much! Fawn Blaylock wasn’t my favorite character when I first met her back in book one. She was mean to Ruthie, with basically no real explanation, and I found it very hard to forgive her. However, once the whole awful situation with Tyler began, my opinion of her very quickly made a turnaround. And as soon as I started this novel, I knew I would end up loving her just as much as Ruthie. She’s been through so much in her short life, partly at the hands of her own father, and it helped me to sympathize with her from day one. When I first read the description of this book, I was so, so excited to find out who it was about. No, not Fawn, but the “local football coach” whose identity is very clear to anyone who has read Jaded—JohnScott. If you’ve read my review of Jaded, you know that I loved Ruthie’s cousin from the very first moment I was introduced to him, so I was thrilled when I found out this book would focus on him. And as I got to know him better, I realized even more that JohnScott is by far the sweetest man to ever grace the face of the earth. The way he cared for Fawn blew me away, and I couldn’t help loving him even more. All in all, I really, really loved this book, and I already cannot wait to read it again. I’m so glad I now own the whole entire series, because you can be sure I will be reading it again and again, and lending it to all my reader friends. As you’ve probably already guessed, I cannot help but give Justified all five bookshelves, and a permanent place on my all-time favorites list. It captivated me, touched my heart, and has left me unable to stop thinking about it, so I would definitely say Varina hit it out of the park again with this one. I received a copy of this book through the Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for only my honest review.
KMarkovich More than 1 year ago
I was not expecting the many twists and turns in this book – I thoroughly enjoyed it!! The back of the books says, “A rebellious young woman seeks redemption for her sins, but can she forgive herself? In a small Texas town ruled by gossip, Fawn Blaylock believes others are justified in condemning her untimely pregnancy….It is the unforgettable story of broken dreams, second chances, and relentless hope.” I thought the back made this seem like a bland, contemporary, Christian romance. It was so, so, much more! Fawn is pregnant. But her boyfriend Tyler is a loser who she keeps breaking up with – but then getting back together. Will she be able to stay away from him? He has a lot at stake to pursue her. She also wants to prove to her parents that she can make it on her won, but can she really? Is she just like her mother? When high school football coach JohnScott Pickett helps make repairs on her rickety house and treats her kindly, will it be enough to break the hold Tyler has on her? But that is merely the top layer to the story – there is so much more! I found it refreshing the way Fawn seeks God and struggles with hard things – “…sometimes it’s so hard to feel Him, and to know for sure He’s there, and that He’ll keep forgiving me.” I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it! I received this book from the author in return for my honest opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Justified is the second book in Varina Denman’s Mended Hearts series. The book takes the reader back to the town of Trapp, Texas and reunites readers with some familiar friends. Ruthie, Fawn and the rest of the gang work together to discover that once you are forgiven, you are also justified. Fawn has a difficult time believing she is worthy of love and forgiveness, whether it be from God or Ruthie’s cousin, JohnScott. She just knows she has done too many wrong things for her to be cleansed of all wrong. Her sins are ever before her. She can’t escape them. Enter JohnScott, the local high school football coach, who assists Fawn in discovering that she is worth so much more than she could ever dream to him, to God and to herself. As Fawn and JohnScott grow closer together, she discovers that she is a priceless piece of artwork in the eyes of her Heavenly Father and in the eyes of JohnScott. She learns to forgive herself and accept the forgiveness that God offers. Another well written book and a wonderful sequel to her debut work. Varina not writes about characters that struggle with everyday life, but characters that embrace their shortcomings and discover their eternal worth in the eyes of the Father. If you are looking for real characters and a well written story, travel back to Trapp and discover, as Fawn does that God justifies us, it is not something we can earn. She also learns to love herself, along the way.
Britney_Adams More than 1 year ago
Justified takes readers back to Trapp, Texas, and offers a vivid, realistic portrayal of small town life. Varina Denman does a tremendous job of capturing the experiences and emotions of Fawn Blaylock and her compelling story. While I did not really care for Fawn in Book 1, I felt compassion for her in this book and enjoyed the story being told primarily from her point of view. This absorbing tale explores so many topics and includes several surprising events. I had a hard time putting this book down and can’t wait to continue the series in Jilted! Justified is the second book in the Mended Hearts series. I recommend reading this series in order for a greater understanding and enjoyment of the characters and their stories. A complimentary copy of this book was provided to me by the author. I appreciate the opportunity to read this story and share my honest opinion.
RGNHALL More than 1 year ago
 Gossip, judgment, and everyone knows your business!   That's small town life at its worst and Fawn, the little rich girl, finds herself pregnant, unmarried, and thrown out of her parents' mansion.   The whole town is talking and pointing fingers and the high school coach who taught her in the recent past is one of the few people treating her with kindness.   Fawn finds herself befriended by an unlikely checkout girl at the local grocery store.....Ruthie, someone she would normally have spent her days talking about and certainly not hanging out with!   Fawn and Ruthie both struggle with wondering where God fits in the scheme of their lives and trying to discern God's plan for their lives while still wondering if God can forgive them and love them just as they are.              Fawn is determined to make it on her own and show her parents that she does not need them and that she does not need the baby's father, Tyler, another little rich boy gone bad.  Tyler tries to drown his sorrows in liquor while Fawn drowns hers in homemade iced coffees.              I found myself reading and thinking that maybe things would settle down for the characters when along came a new storm for them to weather!   Having grown up in a very small town in Virginia myself, I could certainly relate to that aspect of life for Fawn and her family and friends.   I empathized with them as my heart broke for them at the same time.   I found myself caught up in their stories and eager for things to work out with a happy ending for them!            I rated this book 5 stars and can hardly wait to read the third book in the series.            I received a free kindle version of this book from netgalley in exchange for my honest review.   All opinions expressed are my own.         Reviews are also posted on my blog, amazon, barnes and noble, booksamillion, deepershopping, christianbook, goodreads, and shelfari.
DKStevens119 More than 1 year ago
I did find Justified to be an unforgettable story of broken dreams, hope, and  second chances.  I was still thinking about this story of Fawn Blaylock long after I turned the last page. This was  a family story in a small Texas  town  where gossip,  judgment and finger pointing were enough  to break one's spirit. This story dealt with some real tough  issues  of  guilt, shame,  an unexpected  pregnancy and abuse. I could see this so clearly as I grew up in a small town and the author captured  it perfectly... I enjoyed reading this book and would certainly recommend it.  I was gifted a copy for review by NetGalley for my opinion which I have given.
MelissaF More than 1 year ago
I loved the first book in this series and couldn’t wait to get my hands on this one. I was so excited when it released so close to the first. What do I love about this series? I’m not even sure. It could be Varina’s writing style. She makes everything come alive. It could be the characters. They are all so developed. I can picture each one and they are all so different. Even Ruthie (who was the main characters in Jaded) still had her quirky personality in Justified. The characters are all flawed none of them are perfect and I love that because that is true to life. It could be the small town setting. Verina does a great job giving the town of Trapp its own personality and developing the story world in that town. With all that being said I thoroughly enjoyed Justified. We meet Fawn in the first book and she isn’t very likeable at first in that book. She gets pregnant and her world turns upside down. Now she is humbled because she is forced to live much differently then she is used to. She is a young girl trying to find her own identity and others are trying to take that right away from her. Her ex-boyfriend is up to no good and I cringed every time she thought about taking him back. I so wanted JohnScott and Fawn to speak up sooner about their feelings. But Varina developed that relationship beautifully. If you have ever dealt with insecurity I think we will relate to Fawn a lot and her many struggles. Another great one by Varina. A copy of this book was given to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.