For two single parents with bruised hearts, it’ll take more than a little courage to get back on the horse when it comes to love.
Kimberly Welch lost her husband to a heart attack in the blink of an eye. But she’s losing her daughter slowly, in the day-to-day tension. In three difficult years, Kimberly has gone from Seattle socialite to Kings Meadow charity case, and her daughter is not responding well to the changes. She’s becoming a sullen, cantankerous teen.
Chet Leonard lost his teenage son in a car accident. Then his wife abandoned him and their two remaining boys. He tries to keep his mind on the family ranch, but if the last two years have taught him anything, it’s that sometimes you just have to let the memories hurt. Let the memories hurt, and leave well enough alone.
But when Chet volunteers to help tame Kimberly’s daughter’s horse, everyone gets more than they bargained for . . . especially when eighty-four-year-old Anna McKenna shows up.
Nana Anna has reappeared in Kings Meadow after decades away, bringing with her the magnetism and transformative joy that come from a life well lived . . . just the kind of magic that a couple of unlucky-in-love single parents need to conjure up a little courage and raise a new family from the ashes of tragedy.
"Hatcher crafts a lovely installment of the Kings Meadow Romance and readers will want more of the Idaho ranchers. It takes us into the healing power of horses and God's ability to create community where it is most needed." —Romantic Times, 4-1/2 star review
About the Author
Bestselling novelist Robin Lee Hatcher is known for her heartwarming and emotionally charged stories of faith, courage, and love. The recipient of Lifetime Achievement Awards from both RWA and ACFW and winner of the Christy, RITA, and numerous other awards, Robin has authored over 75 books. She and her husband make their home in Idaho where she enjoys spending time with her family, her high-maintenance Papillon, Poppet, and Princess Pinky, the DC (demon cat). For more information, visit www.robinleehatcher.com, Facebook: robinleehatcher, Twitter: @robinleehatcher
Read an Excerpt
Love Without End
A Kings Meadow Romance
By Robin Lee Hatcher
Thomas NelsonCopyright © 2014 Robin Lee Hatcher
All rights reserved.
Chet Leonard watched the automatic doors leading from the concourses of the Boise airport, hoping he would recognize Nana Anna when she came into view.
How much could she have changed in ten years? Perhaps a lot. The last time he'd seen her was about a decade ago when he and his family took a vacation to Disney World in Florida. They'd taken one day off from rides and games to spend an afternoon with Anna and her husband, Walter.
Anna McKenna wasn't any blood relation to the Leonards, but Chet considered her family all the same. And now, after the death of her husband, she was coming home to Idaho. Coming home to live once more on the Leonard ranch. A place she belonged.
He caught sight of a white-haired woman in a wheelchair. Was that her? If so, he might need to rethink where she would stay. The automatic doors opened and he took a step forward, then stopped. It wasn't Anna. He could see that now. Anna McKenna was in her eighties, but aging didn't change a person's looks as much as that.
"Chet Leonard. Aren't you a sight for sore eyes."
His gaze moved a few steps beyond the woman in the wheelchair. A grin split his face. This was Nana Anna. Older, yes, from the last time he was with her, but he would know that smile and those merry blue-gray eyes anywhere. Not to mention that dark red hair—which these days came from a bottle.
A few quick strides carried him to her, and without any forethought, he lifted her feet off the floor as he gave her a tight hug. She laughed. He recognized that about her too. Setting her on her feet again and holding her at arm's length, he said, "You made it here fine, I see."
"Of course I did." She patted her collarbone. "And my, my. I swear you grew taller since I last saw you."
"I doubt it. I stopped growing years ago, Nana Anna."
Color bloomed in her cheeks. "Goodness gracious. It's good to be called that to my face again. I've missed it."
He held out his hand to take her small carry-on. "Let's go down to baggage claim. I assume you've got some bags checked."
"I do indeed."
Chet took Anna by the crook of her arm, and they walked toward the escalator.
"Can't believe how much this airport has changed," Anna said on the ride down.
He looked around. "Yeah. Guess it's a lot different from the last time you were here."
"I expect more than this airport's different. Time marches on."
They stepped off the escalator in companionable silence and followed other passengers toward the luggage carousels.
"Do you want to sit down while we wait?" he asked her.
"No, thank you. Been sitting too many hours as it is. Need some movement in my giddyup."
He grinned, remembering Anna as she'd been thirty years ago, before she married Walter Cunningham and moved to Florida. Already in her fifties—which had seemed ancient to Chet at the time—she'd been as active and hardworking as any man they had on the ranch. She could ride a horse all day, make a campfire, sleep on the ground, mend fences, and fix a mean breakfast.
"I know I said it over the phone, but I want you to know how sorry I am about all that's happened to you in the last few years. Rick and Marsha and all."
He nodded, words caught in his throat. He'd learned there was no escaping the sadness when it swept over him. He could go days without consciously thinking about the son who'd died in a car crash or the marriage that had ended despite his attempts to salvage it. But the memories and the heartache were there all the same, hidden in a deep corner of his heart.
Anna laid a wrinkled hand on his forearm. "One day at a time, Chet. That's all God asks of any of us. Just one day at a time."
Chet nodded again.
The warning light flashed and a loud beep sounded, then the conveyor belt went into motion. A short while later, bags appeared and plopped onto the oval-shaped carousel.
"What am I looking for?" Chet asked.
"Two purple bags with a bright red band around each one."
Black suitcases. Green duffel bags. Small and large boxes. One after another dropped into view. And then at last the awaited purple bags. The color was brighter than any other he'd seen so far. Appropriate for the colorful, much-beloved Nana Anna.
At the start of their drive north, Anna expressed amazement at how much Boise had grown in the years she'd been away, but when they passed through Kings Meadow a little better than an hour later, she smiled and said, "This place hasn't changed all that much, has it?"
"You might be surprised. New library. New schools. New houses. We even have a couple of subdivisions. More changes than you'd think." He glanced at his passenger.
Anna's eyes were awash with tears, though her smile was broad. "It's good to come home, Chet. No place else ever felt quite right to me, no matter how much I loved Walter. Thanks for letting an old woman come back."
Chet felt a little choked up himself. Anna McKenna was the nearest thing to a grandmother—great-grandmother—his boys would ever know. Though she might not realize it, she was the one doing him a favor, not the other way around. Sam and Pete could use a woman in their lives again. Chet did his best, but he was a poor replacement for the mother who'd abandoned them.
It took another twenty minutes to reach the Leonard ranch, their land tucked between pine-covered mountains to the north, east, and west.
"Look at that," Anna whispered as the truck passed beneath the sign proclaiming: Leonard Ranch Quarter Horses. "Would you look at that? Prettiest sight I ever did see. And you've got several new outbuildings too."
By the time Chet's black Ford pulled up to the house, Sam and Pete were standing outside.
A soft gasp escaped Anna, and she covered her mouth with one hand. When she lowered it again, she said, "Look at those boys. They've grown so tall since you came to visit me and Walter in Florida. They look like you when you were their age. The photos you've e-mailed didn't do them justice."
"Yeah, they're Leonards to the core. No doubt about it. But I see more of my dad than me in Sam."
"And there's lots of Abe in Pete. I didn't know your grandfather when he was sixteen, of course, but I can still see it."
Chet chuckled. "Nothing wrong with your eyesight, is there, Anna?"
"Not a blessed thing. Eighty-four and almost perfect vision. 'Cept when I'm reading. Need glasses when I want to read fine print."
"So do I." Chet opened the door and hopped down from the cab. With quick strides, he rounded the front of the truck, opened the passenger door, and helped Anna descend. Then he took her by the arm and drew her toward the house. "Sam and Pete, do you remember Ms. McKenna?"
Sam stepped forward. "I remember. You showed us an alligator sunning himself near the road."
"Gracious. I'd forgotten that. But I'm not surprised a boy of seven would remember."
Sam leaned in and kissed her cheek. "Good to see you again, Ms. McKenna."
"I'd prefer to be Nana Anna to you boys. Or just Anna, if you're not comfortable with that."
"We're glad you're here ... Nana Anna." Pete repeated the actions of his older brother.
Sam said, "I'll get your bags."
Chet watched his older son stride toward the pickup, then said, "Anna, you'll be staying in the main house with us until we can clear out the cottage. To be honest, it hasn't been a guesthouse since that first year after you moved away. We've used it for storage ever since you left. There's quite a collection of junk after three decades."
"That's fine with me. If you're sure I won't be in the way."
"Not possible. You're family. You belong with us." He gave her another grin. Then the sound of wheels on gravel drew his attention back to the long driveway. An older model blue sedan was approaching. "Excuse me, Anna. I'd best see who that is. Pete, you show Nana Anna into the house. I'll be along soon."
The blue car came to a halt near the barn. Chet was about halfway to it when the driver's door opened, and an attractive woman got out. Tall and lithe, she had long, curly dark-brown hair, the sides caught back with clips. She was a stranger. If they'd met before, he would remember her.
She saw his approach and lifted a hand to shade her eyes from the afternoon sun. "Mr. Leonard?"
"That's me, ma'am. How can I help you?"
Her eyes narrowed slightly, and she worried her lower lip with her teeth before answering, "It's about a horse."
"We've got plenty for sale. What are you—"
"No. No, I don't want to buy a horse. We ... I mean, my daughter ... she was given a horse."
Chet stifled a groan, pretty sure he knew what was coming.
"It's a wild horse. Well, not a wild horse like the mustangs you read about in the newspaper, but almost the same thing. Anyway, it needs gentled, and my daughter needs to learn how to work with it. My friend said you were the man to see. Chet Leonard, right?"
Maybe one of his buddies was playing a prank on him. "Who's your friend?"
Not a prank, then. Janet Dunn went to his church, and he knew her well. She wasn't the prankster type.
"I ... we ... my daughter and I are staying with Janet for ... for a while."
She was a pretty thing. No doubt about it. But she also looked as skittish as a green-broke colt. The way her voice broke. The way her eyes couldn't stay on him more than a second or two at a time. "Listen, Miss ...?" He paused and waited for her to answer.
"Welch. Kimberly Welch."
"Miss Welch, I don't do that sort of thing anymore. Too much work around the ranch as it is."
"Please, Mr. Leonard. Please don't decide against it so quickly. Life has been hard in the last few years for my daughter. Her father died suddenly and ... and we had to move from our home. We've had to move more than once in the last three years." She spoke rapidly, as if terrified he would interrupt to refuse again. "My daughter's lost so much. Her father. Her friends. Her school. I can't bear for her to lose one thing more. Tara's always wanted a horse, and now this gelding has been given to her by a friend of Janet's. Only I don't know the first thing about horses. I don't know if he is in good health or safe for her to be around or ... or anything."
Against his better judgment, Chet asked, "How old is the horse, Ms. Welch?"
"He's three, I think."
"And why did you call him a wild horse?"
"As I understand it, he was born on a ranch over near the ... what are they called? The Owyhee Mountains. He and the other horses on the ranch ran free over hundreds of acres. We were told this colt had no contact with humans for the first two years of his life. Then the man who bought him used punishment rather than patience and kindness to try to break him. I'm not sure how the horse went from that man to Janet's friend, but in the end, he was gifted to my daughter. And if Tara has to give him up now, it will break her heart. Please, Mr. Leonard. Don't make me have to break her heart all over again."
Good sense demanded he send Kimberly Welch packing. Good sense told him that he didn't have time to look at her gelding, let alone to train a horse that had been mistreated and a rider who knew little or nothing about horses. But he always had been a sucker for a damsel in distress, and he couldn't say no to the pleading look in this woman's eyes. "All right. I'll have a look at him and talk to your daughter. Then I'll make my decision. No promises. Would tomorrow be okay?"
"Tomorrow would be fine. Thank you, Mr. Leonard. Thank you so very much."CHAPTER 2
Halfway back to Janet's house, Kimberly pulled off to the side of the highway, pressed her forehead against the steering wheel, and wept. She wouldn't have been able to pinpoint one exact reason for her tears. It was a pent-up accumulation of life and hardships, loss and disappointments, and fear. Plenty of fear.
People always talked about addicts needing to hit bottom. Kimberly wasn't an addict, but she had definitely hit bottom. A person couldn't sink much lower than where she was right now. Once she'd been the stay-at-home wife of a prosperous businessman and the mother of a bright and popular daughter. Now she was a financially struggling widow, unable to find employment after too many years out of the job market, and mother to a hurting, sometimes sulky teenager whom Kimberly hardly recognized as the joyful child she'd raised.
Tears spent at last, Kimberly straightened, wiped her eyes with a tissue, then looked around at the valley that was surrounded on all sides by tall, tree-covered mountains. This valley was now home to her and Tara—thanks to Kimberly's best friend's generosity. Without Janet's help, they might be living out of their car on the streets of Seattle. The memory of their narrow escape from that end made her shudder. But even so, she wasn't as grateful as she should be.
"How did it come to this?" she whispered. The answer was, a hundred different ways. Little things, many of them, but when added together they became big and overwhelming.
Kimberly didn't want to be here, in Idaho, in Kings Meadow. The scenery that surrounded her was beautiful. She didn't argue with that. But it was also remote, and she hadn't grown used to the lack of sounds, both day and night. The prevailing silence made her feel even more lost, uncertain, abandoned. She missed her beautiful home in the exclusive neighborhood. She missed the theater and the opera. She missed Puget Sound and the Pacific Ocean. She missed dining out with friends in fine restaurants. She even missed the crowded freeways.
"I miss my life."
Perhaps if Tara weren't so temperamental, everything wouldn't feel this hopeless. Lately, her daughter seldom talked to Kimberly. It hurt all the more because they had been exceptionally close throughout Tara's childhood, and after Ellis died and their finances unraveled, mother and daughter had only had each other to cling to. They'd been inseparable. But since coming to Kings Meadow things had changed between them. Sometimes Kimberly felt as if Tara blamed her for Ellis's death.
She couldn't help wondering how much of this was normal behavior for an almost-sixteen-year-old girl and how much was the result of the upheaval in their lives.
With a sigh, Kimberly started the engine and pulled back onto the deserted highway. The drive to Janet's house on the edge of Kings Meadow took another ten minutes or so. Long enough for Kimberly to feel more in control of her emotions. When she got to the house, she was relieved to see her friend's SUV in the driveway, meaning she was home from work. Kimberly steered her car to the side of the small garage and cut the engine. A glance toward a neighboring house, located halfway up a gentle slope, found her daughter, seated on the top rail of a corral, looking at the horse inside.
I never should have let her have it.
Kimberly got out of the car and stared a short while longer at her daughter. Tara didn't move, too mesmerized by her horse to have heard her mother's return. Kimberly sighed, then headed for the house. Janet was stirring something on the stove when Kimberly entered through the kitchen door. "Hey, there." Janet set the spoon on a holder. "Did you go out to see Chet?"
Kimberly nodded. "Yes."
"He agreed to come look at the horse and to meet Tara. But he says he doesn't do training anymore."
"Don't you worry. He'll do it."
"I forgot to ask what he charges. Once he knows I don't have a job or any money to spare ..." She let her voice trail into silence.
Janet took up the spoon and stirred some more. "Don't you worry. I've known Chet Leonard a long time. He's got a good heart. You'll see. We'll work something out. I know how important this is to you and Tara."
It would be nice to be as confident as her friend. About anything.
"Tara's up at the Lyles' corral," Janet added.
"I know. I saw her when I pulled in." Kimberly dropped her purse onto the small desk near the back entrance. "Can I help with dinner preparations?"
"Nope. Got it all under control."
"You never let me do enough around here."
Janet threw her a smile. "Not true. You're a big help."
"You should make up a chart of chores for me and Tara. We don't want to freeload. We're enough of a burden as it is."
"You aren't freeloading, and you aren't a burden. I asked you to come. Remember?"
"I remember. But it's still freeloading if I don't have a job or any money of my own." The words tasted bitter on her tongue. She supposed she should have grown used to poverty, used to needing help from others, but she hadn't. She hated it. Hated every bit of it.
"I wouldn't want your money even if you had some."
"And now there's that horse. It's got to have food too."
Excerpted from Love Without End by Robin Lee Hatcher. Copyright © 2014 Robin Lee Hatcher. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I've never been into cowboy romances. I am a bit afraid of horses though I admire their beauty. But this book was a lovely exception. The hero is a cowboy and he raises horses and I LOVED this book! I also usually prefer a romance with some mystery or suspense involved but this book did not have either of those elements and yet it was a very engaging book. I quickly felt a real concern and kinship with the characters. Both Kimberly and Chet have suffered a great loss in their marital relationships but Tara throws them together. Are they ready for it? Can they open their hearts and trust again? Read this enchanting book to find out. I have never been to Idaho but the beauty described by Robin Lee Hatcher makes me want to hop in the van for a road trip. I have never really had the desire to stay on a horse ranch either but this book made me consider the possibility. In fact, I wish I had the money to get started right now. Who is ready to go with me? We can explore the beautiful ranch and maybe even learn to ride horses. I'm sure Chet would teach us. Who is up for riding lessons from a gorgeous cowboy? I rate this book 5 stars and highly recommend it to readers. I received a free pdf version of this book from netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
I enjoyed this story. Every other chapter takes you back in time to tell the youth of another character on the ranch and then returns to the modern day characters on the ranch. Both stories are great and tie together. The ranch and country sound beautiful.
Love Without End is the first book in Robin Lee Hatcher’s Kings Meadow Romance series, and is the first book I’ve ever read by her. I’ve been looking forward to finally having a chance to read one of her novels, and I’m so glad I got to start off with this one. Love Without End is such a sweet, captivating story that I really enjoyed, and I am looking forward to reading more of Robin’s novels. Kimberly is such a relatable character! She was burned in her past (haven’t we all) and it leaves her afraid to really live life again. But I’ve got to give her praise for the way she fights to give her daughter what she deserves. Even though she just wants to be back on safe ground, Kimberly tries her hardest to provide for Tara, and that is one of the things I admire about her. I also just really love the way she and Chet interact. I wish I could tell you exactly what about their relationship I like, but since I don’t want to spoil it, I’ll just say that the ending is my favorite part. Because it’s wonderful. Did I mention that Chet is as well? A sweet, still hurting but wonderful single father, Chet deserves so much praise for all that he does for his family and how he fights to get over what his ex-wife did to him. Both he and Kimberly really come back from some serious emotional pain, and I really admire that quality in them. I cannot go on with this review without first mentioning Nana Anna for a little bit. Anna is such a great character, the spry, grandmotherly woman she is, but also the young, hurting woman she was. I love how Robin throws Anna’s past into the mix by adding in various chapters that really gave me insight into who Anna was and how that made her who she is. Her story added to the overall plot of this book, and I am so glad that Robin wrote it in this way. Overall, I have to give this book all five bookshelves. It was such a sweet story that really dealt with some serious issues, in a mostly lighthearted way, and I enjoyed every bit of it, especially all the parts about the horses. I would highly recommend this novel, and I can’t wait to finish reading the rest of the series! (This review is from my blog, spreadinghisgrace.blogspot.com)
Love Without End, by Robin Lee Hatcher, begins the King's Meadow Romance series. You meet Kimberly Welch when she approaches Chet Leonard at his ranch. Kimberly has come to ask Chet to not only train a horse that had been given to her daughter, Tara, but also to teach Tara how to ride this wild horse! Chet already has his hands full trying to keep his ranch running; however, after learning about Kimberly's struggle following her husband's recent death, he cannot say no to her! Chet understands what it is like to experience the loss of a spouse. Recently, his wife left him and their two teenage sons after the death of their oldest son! This tale is fun to watch as you see both Kimberly and Chet learn to deal with all that has been given to them. You will see how they both begin to trust God to bring them through these rough waters! http://penlessreview.blogspot.com/
Very boring and predictable. Did not hold my attention at all. Would not recommend it at all.
After reading "A Promise Kept" and how Chet struggled through different areas. It was wonderful to see in "Love Without End" , that even though there were challenges. Chet had a very happy ending by training a teenage girl and meeting her mother. Awesome read as always by Robin.
Love Without End, by Robin Lee Hatcher, is a romance and western that shows the obstacles and rewards in allowing broken hearts a chance to love and be loved once again. Chet Leonard is a single father who has experienced the loss of a child, as well as being abandoned by his wife. He buries himself in his ranch and waits for the hurt to soften. Kimberly Welch is also a single parent, but her circumstances are much different. Her husband has died, her daughter is hard to handle, and she learns her husband had secret debts that adds to her worries. When the two families are brought together and their lives change in ways they never expected. Will they open their hearts enough for their wounds to heal? This story captured my attention from chapter one. I don’t read many western/ranch type stories, so the setting gripped me and I really enjoyed learning about the history of the ranch. The characters (some of whom I’ve learned were in a previous book) are well developed, and the romance is sweet and believable. This is the first book I’ve read by this author. I like her writing style and voice and look forward to reading more stories in this series.
A pleasant juggle between two different times! Love Without End is the story of the love that develops between two single parents, each making an effort to get over the events that led them to their current situations. After the death of her husband, Kimberly is struggling- financially, as well as emotionally- to raise her teenage daughter Tara; and after being abandoned by his wife, Chet is a single-father on the quest to raise his two teenage sons. Their lives are joined by their love of horses, their love of family, and their commitments to not only survive, but to be happy. Nana Anna’s life is unfolded through a series of flashback chapters that tells of how she first wound up in Kings Meadow, as well as her ultimate return. I found her presence to be inspiring and her wisdom to be essential and valuable. I would’ve liked to see more development in the relationship between Chet and Kimberly, as a majority of the story focused on them handling their children’s first journeys into love. However, aiding their children instead of constantly concentrating on healing their own wounds was a sign of what good parents they were, which is commendable on its own. Also, the guidance they gave to their children was a good healing agent for what ailed Chet and Kimberly. A nice inspirational romance that did what it set out to do – provide guidance on healing, believing, faith, and love.
The pace of this book is as leisurely as the stroll depicted on the cover. It really gave me time to get a feel for each of the characters as well as the setting. I totally appreciated that the romance between Chet and Kimberly was not of the whirlwind variety. The progress of their friendship and relationship was also slow-moving, interspersed with flashbacks from pivotal moments in Anna's life. Both Kimberly and Chet have issues to work through along the way, and with Anna providing profound insights and some teenage kids to liven things up, this is an enjoyable book to read. My favorite quote from Anna is "God doesn't need me to pretend, and He isn't afraid of my questions. You go right on and pour out your feelings to Him. Don't hold back. He'll listen, and then He'll comfort. You see if He doesn't."
Love Without End is another incredible story from Robin Lee Hatcher. I loved the way she wove together so many threads to bring readers one beautifully complex and moving story. Chet was probably my favorite character. I really liked him in A Promise Kept and was so glad he got his own story. After all the loss in his life, it was nice to come back and see how he was able to persevere through. The relationship between him and his sons was really special too. I liked that Anna's story was told throughout the whole book. It really helped to have her whole history instead of just picking up with her return to the ranch. At times the switch between past and present felt a little jarring and almost felt like Anna's story could have been a prequel of sorts, but I was glad they were both included. Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I'm a big fan of this series and look forward to more visits to King's Meadow! [4 stars] I received a free copy of this book from the publisher through Litfuse Publicity in exchange for my fair and honest review.
This was such a sweet story of love and hope. As an added bonus, the author included a story within a story! (I love when authors do that!). Not only do we get to follow the lives and romance between Chet and Kimberly and their families, but we also get to learn more about Nana Anna. Anna's story definitely kept me interested when I felt Chet and Kimberly's story was moving a bit slow. Kimberly and Chet are both adults from a broken family. Kimberly is a widow with a teenage girl. Chet is a divorcee with two teenage sons. Their lives couldn't be more different. However, as they begin to work together, the attraction becomes palpable. It was interesting to watch both Chet and Kimberly get over their past to embrace the future God had for them. The message of the story was clear. God loves us with "a love without end." Once we embrace that love, it's easy for us to portray that into our own lives. In fact, that's what God wants. He wants us to surrender to Him and His will for our lives. Watching Kimberly learn to master her fear of horses was the author's way of portraying her getting over her fear and surrendering to God. Overall, this was a sweet story of "a love without end." (pun intended!) *I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the BookLook blogging program in exchange for my honest review.*
I had such a good time reading this book. I enjoyed it from start to finish and felt very connected to the characters and the beautiful setting of King’s Meadow, Idaho. Both Kimberly Welch and Chet Leonard have known heartbreaking loss in their lives. Both have lost loved ones and are working through the hurt in their own ways. Kimberly is also trying to get back on her feet financially and worries about how her teenage daughter is handling the trials they have both endured. I enjoyed reading about the way Kimberly grew throughout this story. From her realization that she had begun to live a relatively shallow life that was dominated by luxury before her husband passed, to the way she started to understand as time passed, that she needed to give all of her hurts and questions over to God and trust in Him to provide the answers. Chet grew throughout the story as well. His faith was strong and he relied on God to get him through the days, but he worried about the possibility of starting a new relationship and if it was worth the potential for heartache. Learning to give those fears to God was an important step in his life. The beautiful setting of King’s Meadow and Chet’s horse farm made for such nice reading. I felt like I was there, in the midst of the beautiful mountains and majestic horses. Absolutely lovely! I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, through Litfuse Publicity, in exchange for an honest review, which I have given.
Oh my goodness! What a sweet book!! Love Without End was about two different story-lines that merge together in the end: Anna's or "Nana Anna's" from the mid-1940's on, and Chet and Kimberly's in present day. It was a sweet, slower-paced story about friendship, loss, and choosing to embrace life and all that it might offer, maybe even a second chance at love. I really liked the family dynamics of Chet's Grandfather's family who Nana first met and lived with for decades, to Chet's and Kimberly's families and their friends. Chet and Kimberly were both single parents trying to deal with teenage children. I enjoyed seeing the two of them get to know each other as well as their kids and Anna. It was also sweet to read snippets from Anna's life. I also liked that the inspirational element of the story was weaved in nicely. It never felt preachy. Religion just felt like a part of these character's lives and naturally so. The romance wasn't pushed either. It started with friendship first, with obvious attraction but plenty of respect, and then those feelings developed into something more. If you enjoy inspirational romance and have enjoyed Robin Lee Hatcher's other books, then I'd definitely recommend Love Without End. I'm curious to see what the next book will be about and if we'll be seeing some of these characters again. I'd like to see a happy ending for any of these kids or for Kimberly's friend, Janet. Content: Clean Source: I would like to thank the publisher, Thomas Nelson, through Litfuse Publicity for my complimentary review copy, which did not affect my review in any way.
I received a copy of LOVE WITHOUT END by Robin Lee Hatcher from Thomas Nelson via BookSneeze. I cannot stress enough how much I enjoy Thomas Nelson books. They are always top quality, with intriguing adventures, heart stopping romance, and realistic characters. This book involves Kimberly Welch and Chet Leonard. Kimberly’s husband is deceased and Chet’s son is dead. His wife then abandoned him and their two other sons. Both Kimberly and Chet feel lost, hopeless, and down on love. They feel lost. Anyone should be able to relate to that, whether it is because of lost love or another situation. Robin Lee Hatcher shows that life can go up. The author portrays their emotions well and creates a touching love story that will, at times, bring tears to your eyes. Both Kimberly’s family (which includes her and a teenage daughter) and Leonard’s come together when an elderly woman arrives at King’s Meadow, a ranch. Robin Lee Hatcher is definitely an author to watch. I look forward to reading more of her works. LOVE WITHOUT END is a Kings Meadow Romance, the first installment in the series. I highly recommend it. It makes an excellent holiday gift, either to a loved one or for yourself.
Robin Lee Hatcher in her new book, “Love Without End” Book Two in the Kings Meadow series published by Thomas Nelson brings us into the lives of Kimberly Welch and Chet Leonard. From the Back Cover: For two single parents with bruised hearts, it’ll take more than a little courage to get back on the horse when it comes to love. Kimberly Welch lost her husband to a heart attack in the blink of an eye. But she’s losing her daughter slowly, in the day-to-day tension. In three difficult years, Kimberly has gone from Seattle socialite to Kings Meadow charity case, and her daughter is not responding well to the changes. She’s becoming a sullen, cantankerous teen. Chet Leonard lost his teenage son in a car accident. Then his wife abandoned him and their two remaining boys. He tries to keep his mind on the family ranch, but if the last two years have taught him anything, it’s that sometimes you just have to let the memories hurt. Let the memories hurt, and leave well enough alone. But when Chet volunteers to help tame Kimberly’s daughter’s horse, everyone gets more than they bargained for . . . especially when eighty-four-year-old Anna McKenna shows up. Nana Anna has reappeared in Kings Meadow after decades away, bringing with her the magnetism and transformative joy that come from a life well lived . . . just the kind of magic that a couple of unlucky-in-love single parents need to conjure up a little courage and raise a new family from the ashes of tragedy. A girl, a guy and a horse what more can you ask for in a story? Let’s face it the world we live in isn’t an easy place and life is not a fairy tale so it is only natural that there are a lot of wounded individuals out there and second chances, though dreamed of, simply do not come around. Oh but when they do it is a lot of fun. Welcome to Kings Meadow where there is a chance at the second chance. Ms. Hatcher has given us characters in Kimberly and Chet that are marvelous, meticulously crafted, and each one literally breathes on the pages. We can identify with them and root for them to succeed. I am so looking forward to the next book in this wonderful series. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Litfuse Publicity Group. 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.”
Hatcher writes an amazing story that keeps you turning the pages anxious to see what is going to happen next. Chet and Kimberly have been through some of the hardest things that you can imagine, but both are still doing the best they can. The last thing either of them want to do is fall in love again. Especially when Kimberly wants to live in the city, and Chet can’t live anywhere but at his ranch. They both have their own kids to worry about, and don’t need any more complications. But God often has a better plan for our lives than we could ever imagine. This story bounces back and forth from current times to some of Chet’s Nana Anna’s past. Nana Anna was one of my favorite people in the book. I loved how throughout the story we got too see bits and pieces of what makes Anna who she is. You can’t help but love her, and want to be a lot like her when you are her age. Kimberly’s daughter Tara is a teenager that has had her life uprooted since her father died. She is very self centered, like any teenager is. When she is given a horse, her life changes for the better. She has wanted one forever, and barely holds on to the hope that she will get to keep it. When Chet steps in to help her learn the ropes she blossoms. Her dreams are finally coming true. How will she get along with Chet’s sons Sam and Pete? What would she do if she is forced to leave the place she loves? I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction along with Contemporary fiction. Hatcher is an awesome author who makes you love the characters and want them for friends in real life. A must read! I received a copy of this book from Thomas Nelson and Net Galley for my honest opinion. All opinions expressed are my own.
Love Without End by Robin Lee Hatcher is one of the very best books that I have read in quite a long time. The setting in Kings Meadow, Idaho is a delightful story of challenges that families share. A sweet love story that is interesting and keeps you turning pages until the very end. I would HIGHLY recommend this great book to anyone who loves to read!
Once again Robin Lee Hatcher does not disappoint with her newest novel, Love Without End. Love Without End is a follow up to A Promise Kept (a novel based on Robin’s own story). In A Promise Kept, we meet Chet Leonard who first suffered heartache when his son died in a car wreck and then again when his wife abandoned him and his other two sons. A Promise Kept ends with Chet still hoping to reconcile with his wife and there seems to be some hope at that time but when we meet Chet again in Love Without End, we learn that his wife has totally rejected her family and left them behind. Chet has gone on to do the best he can to deal with the heartbreak. Chet owns a horse ranch in Kings Meadow, Idaho that has been in the family for generations. One day, recently widowed, Kimberly Welch, and her daughter Tara come into his life when he agrees to help them with their horse. This is a story of two people who have had their heart broken in different ways but as a result both are afraid to love again. This is also the story of a mother and a daughter who are struggling to find common ground. And with Robin being a master at historical fiction, she once again weaves historical and modern fiction together as she tells the back-story of Chet’s beloved Nana Anna who has come to stay with them just as the Welch’s arrive. I can’t leave out one of the main characters in the book, Shiloh’s Star (a magnificent thoroughbred horse). Besides being a beautiful love story, this is also a horse story. This book has great characterization, several good stories intertwined as one, a beautiful setting in Kings Meadow and the horses. What secret did Kimberly discover that broke her heart? Will Chet and Kimberly be able to love and trust again? What heartbreak did Nana Anna face in her younger years and why did she leave her home in King’s Meadow when she was in her fifties? Why is she returning after thirty years of absence? Will Kimberly and Tara mend their relationship? How will Chet save the ranch after an unexpected catastrophe? These are all questions you will want the answer to so I know you will want to read Robin’s newest book. This is a great book for someone who loves horses or stories with a handsome cowboy. It is also a great blend of historical and modern fiction. (The historical flashbacks are very short and add a lot to the story) Anyone who enjoys historical or contemporary romance novels will probably like this story. I received a copy of Love Without End to review but I was under no obligation to give a positive review. I loved it!
Robin Hatcher has written another great romance. Well, actually two romances in one beautifully crafted story, one in the past and the other in the present. This one will be read again and again!
For me, there has always been a flair for romance and the love of horses for as long as I can remember. Just looking at the cover of a novel that pairs a young woman and a man wearing a cowboy hat is enough to make me sigh! Couple that with a great premise of two people who have experienced loss in their marriages that make them both not sure if they are ready to get back in the saddle for romance or love anytime soon. Robin Hatcher takes her readers back to a much loved setting she wrote about in A Promise Kept where she vowed to help Chet Leonard find a second chance at love again. She begins her latest series of novels with Love Without End. It's a timeless story of second chances and how much more full our lives are when we are given a second chance at happiness and love when we least expect it. Chet Leonard has been trying to come to terms with why his wife left him and his three sons after the death of their oldest son, Rick. She simply up and left, subsequently divorcing him after leaving the ranch. Not sure it was because life with Chet would be forever a reminder of Rick, but it definitely left Chet believing that love had all but forgotten him and headed for the sunset instead. Now he was struggling with how to keep the ranch profitable after a lifetime of being in his family for generations. He would surely hate to lose it all now. Thankfully just having Anna moving back into the guesthouse after losing her husband would help give them hope again. Even though she wasn't family by blood, the Leonard's legacy was kept alive but the day Anna showed up on their land back in the early 1940's. Kimberly Welch could hardly believe that life had taken the turn it had. A dead end is more likely where she found herself. Her husband death at 40 from a sudden and unexpected heart attack would have thrown anyone for a loop. But it was what he hadn't shared with her in their marriage that made trust an issue. Leaving them with more debt than they could manage, she lost first her husband, then her house and car and finally everything she owned except for her fifteen-year-old daughter Tara, and it looked like she was slowly losing her every day that went by. Thankfully her friend Janet, stepped in and offered them a place to stay so they wouldn't have to live on the street and along with that, a gift of a horse, for Tara to enable her to find her way back to life again. They only needed to convince Chet Leonard to help them break the horse in for Tara after being neglected by its previous owner. But is love without end or simply a detour in two broken lives and hearts? Only time will tell in this amazing novel! I received Love Without End by Robin Lee Hatcher compliments of Thomas Nelson Publishers and Litfuse Publicity for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation for a favorable review and the opinions contained here are strictly my own. This is such a remarkable story because it unites more than two hearts, but two families and two generations. Robin utilizes the combination of past and present lives of the Leonard family to convey the depth of the love of ranching but also for the love of family. You get a sense of betrayal for both Kimberly and Chet when they look at their past marriages and realize where the flaws resulted that cause both to fall apart so early on. The novel also conveys that often times God uses the difficulties and trials in our own lives to bring us to new beginnings and new hope. I loved this novel and read it immediately the day it arrived. Being a horse lover as a child, stories like this one fed my book lover's heart and gained a well deserved 5 out of 5 stars in my opinion. There is even a sneak peek at the next novel in the series Whenever You Come Around as well as a Reader's Discussion Guide at the conclusion of this novel.