Morning Glory

Morning Glory

by LaVyrle Spencer

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On the eve of World War II, two people are brought together by fate and discover an unexpected passion
Tall, dark and handsome Will Parker has served time for the killing of a Texas prostitute, but keeps losing jobs as his reputation becomes known. In the small town of Whitney, Ga., at the beginning of WW II, he answers the advertisement of a pregnant widow and mother of two, the abused and reclusive Eleanor Dinsmore, who is looking for a husband. Soon in love with ostensibly plain, bedraggled Ellie, Parker dotes on her two boys, and works to support the family. Fittingly for this sort of bucolic idyll, Will and Ellie, despite their rudimentary educations, love books and develop a special friendship with wise old Miss Beasley, the local librarian. Alas, brazen and rapacious Lula Peak, the town floozie, sets her sights on Will, waylaying him in the library; meantimes, Lula is blackmailing her lover, the cowardly Harley Overmire, who is no friend of Will. The clearly drawn characters fulfill their imperativesincluding Will, who becomes a war heroand all is neatly and pleasingly resolved. Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club alternates.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940012665478
Publisher: The Axelrod Agency
Publication date: 04/01/2011
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 59,410
File size: 603 KB

About the Author

LaVyrle Spencer was born in Minnesota, where she attended high school and met and married her high school sweetheart, Dan Spencer — a decision she calls the wisest choice of her life.
Although she showed a flair for writing during high school, LaVyrle didn't begin her first novel until she was in her thirties, working as a teacher's aide at Osseo Junior High School. Spencer decided to try transferring to paper a recurring dream she was having about a story based on her grandmother's lifestyle on a Minnesota farm. She awoke at 4:00 a.m. one morning, and as Spencer recalls, "you think that you can do anything at 4:00 a.m. I wrote the first half a page in a three-ring notebook with a ball-point pen." She finished that first novel, The Fulfillment, and it was published in 1979.
LaVyrle Spencer could be a character in one of her own bestselling novels, as she has experienced as much love, pain, and bliss as any of her characters. And like her heroines she is a charming mix of fire and warmth, strength, savvy and soft-heartedness. Her books are family love stories, and the characters in her novels aren't perfect, they are real people with real problems. Before they live happily ever after they must overcome some sort of adversity — pregnancy, divorce, a lengthy separation, the loss of a loved one — and then undergo a catharsis. Along the way there are moments of anger, happiness and self- revelation. The stories center on themes of abiding love, family ties and strength in difficult times. According to Spencer, "the trademark of my books is mending relationships, showing people how to mend relationships."
Whether set in the Old West of the 1880s, or today, in suburban Minnesota, opening a Spencer novel means seeing love in a new light, and meeting characters so real it's all you can do not to climb into the pages yourself.
LaVyrle and Dan Spencer live in a beautiful Victorian house in Stillwater, Minnesota, and the Spencers often escape to their rustic log cabin deep in the Minnesota woods. LaVyrle's hobbies include gardening, travel, gourmet cooking, entertaining, playing bass guitar and the electronic piano, photography, and observing nature.

Customer Reviews

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Morning Glory 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 76 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you're looking for the typical 'hot sex' romance book, this is not it. Instead this is a beautiful story of two very wounded people who meet and heal each other. If you're a romantic at heart, you'll love this one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am an avid reader to say the least and hands down this just became one of my alltime favorite books. i googled on the internet best romance books and this was on of the lists as like #7. It deserves way higher on the list than 7! I was so moved by the thoughts of both of them when they would silently plead with the other not to turn the other away, want to reach out but was so afraid of being rejected by the other. and you truely feel that 'soul mate' match between them that is said too often in other books but doesnt make you feel it like this book does. Its a MUST READ and I'm looking forward to forgetting some of the story so when I pick it up again, it will be like reading it the first time all over again.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I have ever read. I read this book again and again just to have a good laugh or a good cry. This book is like a warm blanket on a cold day.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This novel is a inspiring story of two people brought together during hard times. After WWII many people found themselves in dire straights. Believing in one another and letting the truth set you free is a great gift. I enjoyed this book very much.
Crystal Winterson More than 1 year ago
the only romance novel i can read again and again. my absolute favorite.
wicklessmom More than 1 year ago
This was the first real (romance) Novel I ever read. I LOVED this book. I looked forward to picking it up everyday and see what was happening in the story. I was so sad when it was all over. This sparked me to want to read more books (and more from this author)! Great book!
J4Life5 More than 1 year ago
I love this book! It is my favorite and I have read it several times. The characters are so real in that they are both damaged by life, no concept of self-worth, but are just regular decent people. I love the fact that their relationship takes awhile to build. I love the fact that despite their terrible pasts, Will and Elly are genuinely good people who live life the best they can. I love the fact that hard work pays off for them. They are grateful for what they have. I love the message of this book, if you live right and do right by others, then your life will be a success. I highly recommend this book and any book by this author, she writes such wonderful characters! I only wish she was still writing!
Veeja More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book so much, I ordered it for my nook. A very unique story line as well as touching. Make sure you have a box of Kleenex, it really pulls at your heart strings.
northamericanwordcat More than 1 year ago
I reread this book recently and found it be simply as wonderful as I remembered.  This book does such an amazing job building a  American world just on the brink of World War II. The hero and heroine are so broken and yet come so alive with love that this is a love story to tell for all time.  The insights into neglect and abuse offered by this book are moving as is the journey to healing and bravery.   I think this might be one of the  best plain heroine romance there is. We also have the fun of a mail order husband (well newspaper ordered).  The love of reading and education explored in this book is marvelous. The librarian  may well be one of the best secondary characters ever written  in romance land and we get a courtroom drama along with all this wonderful romance to boot!  The only issue I have with this book is the one of villains of this piece is shamed because of her sexual behaviors.  It may well be that given this time period her activities would have been seen in a very negative light but the author's voice seems to engage in the same critical vision of the character and therefore her character lacks the deep roundness and complexity of motivation that would have made the book richer and richer with each rereading instead of slightly dated.  Overall, if you are a romance fan, you must read this book.  If you like these themes, you will like this book! Spoilers below! historical-romance, widow, preggers, not-hero's-baby, wwii, geogia, trial, falsely-accused, she-proposes, marriage-of-connivence, hunger,  bee-keeping, farm, tortured-hero, tortured-heroine, taciturn hero, outcast, plain-heroine, ex-con-criminal,  mothering, orphan, notable-secondary-characters, marine, birthing-labor-delivery, self-esteem-issues, gradual-love, working-class-hero, working-class-heroine, secondary-love-story, small-town-romance   
TNLindaLou More than 1 year ago
Of all LaVyrle Spencer's books, this one is my most favorite!  She is my all time favorite author.
Anonymous 4 months ago
Just re read and lovednit as much as the first time
reneebooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
MG was an emotional book about two very damaged people and the healing power of love. Both of them were unloved growing up and their story was heart wrenching and uplifting. Eleanor Dinsmore is a pregnant widow with two small boys living on a rundown farm. Will Parker is an ex-convict just fired from his job when he answers Ellie's advertisement for a husband in the local newspaper. The way these two grow to love each other over time was wonderful.The secondary characters were three dimensional and vividly real. I especially loved Miss Beasley, the town librarian, who was crusty on the outside but had a heart of gold. My only quibble on this book was that I found it hard to believe that they could sleep together in the same bed for all those months and not have sex. But Will is such a beta hero that thinking about it further made me realize that this would be realistic for his character. And when they finally consummate their relationship it was rather subtle but nice just the same. I wanted some hot steamy sex! *sigh* Spencer just doesn't write that way. But I'm keeping this book to share with a few of my friends and my sister. They gotta love it. (Grade: A-)
LarsTheLibrarian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Very, very good. Not my usual type of romance novel, but easily one that I would hand to someone who looks down on them. I know next to nothing about Georgia, particularly Georgia in 1941, so I am not the best judge of this, but I found the setting and diction to be spot on and well "illustrated". Writing realistic speech so easily comes off unrealistic, but I found myself mouthing Elly's words. The language FEELS spoken. That is very unusual. This also seems "meatier" than most romance novels. There is some sex, but not much and those are easily the worst written bits of the book, the heft is in more "slice of life" situations and several plot elements. The plot elements could be cheesy, but are not, possibly because they are contrasted with slice of life, baking pie, harvesting honey, washing diapers elements. It runs deep, exploring trust and self esteem along with love, Will needs a mother as well as a wife and lover, and his dynamic with Elly fulfills that. This is a need that comes up often with men, and yet, doesn't it sound creepy if you explain it wrong? I suppose the theme is more "need" than "desire".I would read again, and definitely recommend to others.
Luli81 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Morning Glory is my first novel by Spencer and I can say it gave me what I was seeking.I'm not an assiduous reader of contemporary romance, I prefer classic tittles or drama. But from time to time I enjoy taking an uncomplicated book, usually between some "heavy" readings, to have a break and to enjoy soapy stories. I've read several books by Deborah Smith, Nicholas Sparks, Judith McNaught and Nora Roberts.Well, well, Mrs. Spencer is one of the best I've read so far! It's not only the romance but the exploration of each of the characters, you learn of their weak sides first and what I most enjoyed is how they accept their faults in each other, finding an unbinding love on the way and creating one of the most dear fictional couples I can remember. Although the story is hardly realistic (where could you find a man like that?), it has some witty and romantic dialogues. I also loved being able to read Elly and Will's thoughts regarding each other from now and then.The setting also helps, re-second World War depression in the States, a widowed mother and a lost soul fighting for redemption. As difficulties arise their bond grow stronger and they overcome their past fears together, as a real couple should do. I liked the message.All in all, a satisfying reading for those who search for a bit of romance, lovely characters and happy endings.So, not a keeper but I'll sure be reading more by this author!
Clairsigne on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
One of my all time favorite's, Elly and Will are two of my favorite characters, and Miss Beasley always makes me smile. I need to buy the hardcover because my poor paperback is worn out from so many re-reads.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read it again and again!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed the novel!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I originally found this book (paperback) at the Chicago O'Hara airport back in 1995. I've read, and reread this story so many times. It's a must read! The story isn't perfect, the characters are not perfect, but the integrity of these two main characters, and their story is just so well done. Another must read by this author is That Camden Summer!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Have read several times, still love it!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read every one of Lavyrle Spencer ' s books . Morning Glory remains one of my favorites. With a great plot, beautiful prose, and outstanding character development , this is one you'll want to read numerous times .
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the characters and the story line. Couldn't put it down!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a wonderful story - a truly great read. A love story just before and at the start of WWII, that tugs at your heart; fraught with some difficulties which thankfully somehow work themselves out. I chose Morning Glory by LaVyrle Spencer based on recommendation by author Kritin Hannah or was it Diana Gabaldon as an author enjoyed by 1 of them. I would recommend. JDL 1/30/17
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read the book because it received such excellent reviews. I thought it was way too long and the whole subplot with the character of Lula was unecessary. The book would have been better with about 100 pages edited out. I skimmed the last 80 pages or so because I was bored with the novel. Reminded me of the movie The Magic of Ordinary Days.