"In a heartwarming novel set amid the lush splendor of the Great Smoky Mountains, Lin Stepp reunites two kindred spirits in a charming story of first love and surprising second chances...
See ya later-and love you forever, Rhea Dean. Those are the words Rhea's childhood sweetheart, Carter Layman, used to say whenever they parted. Not that she places much stock in words anymore. After all, Carter drove off to college in California, promising to make a fortune to help save their families' vacation resort. Instead he stayed there and married someone else. It fell to Rhea to keep Laurel Springs going and she's done just that, working long hours on the camp grounds, buoyed by the beauty of her Smokies home.
Now a widower with a young son, Carter has achieved huge success as a games developer. But he always planned to return to the spring-fed lake and the soaring mountains, to the covered bridge where he and Rhea made wishes and traded kisses. He's coming home to turn Laurel Springs into the place they planned to build together. And as he reveals the truth about his past, Rhea must decide whether to trust in the man-and the dreams-she's never forgotten.
Praise for Lin Stepp and her Smoky Mountain Novels
"I've finally come across someone that believes in all the things that I do...love, family, faith, intrigue, mystery, loyalty, romance, and a great love for our beloved Smoky Mountains."
""An amazing storyteller...The romance exhibited is pure, natural and heartwarming.""
-RT Book Reviews
"A wonderful, new Southern voice."
-Joan Medlicott, author of the bestselling The Ladies of Covington series
About the Author
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Saving Laurel Springs is the third book in the Smoky Mountain Novel series by Lin Stepp that I have read. Saving Laurel Springs is a stand-alone novel but I would recommend reading the other books in the series as they are all so charming. As with the earlier books, I was quickly drawn into the story of Rhea and Carter whose families have long owned the Laurel Springs resort in the Smoky Mountains. Life-long friends, Rhea and Carter had planned to attend college in California together. But Rhea always found excuses not to go and Carter found a new life in California and married someone else. When he returns to Laurel Springs Rhea is challenged and torn with conflicting feelings for both Carter and his young son Taylor. This heartwarming tale spun by master storyteller Lin Stepp is a story of friendship, love, and misunderstandings. Do we really hear what others are trying to tell us or do we just hear what we want to. Sometimes one persons dreams are not anothers. This is tale of second chances. The beautiful Smoky Mountains are brought to life with beautiful descriptions by author Stepp. I was attracted to the first Smoky Mountain novel by the setting and have kept reading because of the excellent writing style and the heartwarming tales. I've learned a lot about the people of the region through these novels. Highly recommend Saving Laurel Springs.
Saving Laurel Springs is the best of the Smoky Mountain Series thus far. It’s about a boy and girl who grew up together in the mountains, who shared their formative years as one and later fell madly in love. They were raised in Laurel Springs, a small resort in the mountains that offers horse-back riding, cabin rentals, hiking, entertainment and more. Despite being outdoorsy, Carter has dreams of being a video game designer while Rhea’s dreams are more centered on fixing up Laurel Springs and staying close to her roots. When it comes time for them both to go off to college, Carter moves to California to follow his dream while Rhea’s life gets sidelined by a series of unfortunate events and she remains in Laurel Springs. Time and circumstance distance the two love birds… and Carter marries another woman. Years later he returns to Laurel Spring, a widow and father. Can Rhea find it in her heart to forgive the man who broke his promises? This story had all the things I love in the Smoky Mountain Series – big extended families who are all up in each other’s business (in a loving way!), strong friendships between main characters outside their love interests (it’s so nice that these characters have good friends to rely on when things get tough!), and beautiful settings and vivid details of the nature and history of the mountains. I thought it was refreshing that Rhea is a stubborn mule of a woman, not apologizing for her understandable anger at being betrayed by her first love. I love Carter and his constant flirting and quirky humor. The two main characters had great chemistry and a believable past of shared experiences and insight into the world. Strong morals, unapologetic faith in God, and a community bond were the underlying foundations of this romance. And I especially loved the mystery – with ghosts, gold miners and good old fashioned scares. Highly recommended!
A very sweet, small town romance that had me escaping to a very peaceful place and gave me a renewed view on second chances. Rhea Dean and Carter Layman were teenage sweethearts. They experienced many firsts together. The plan was always that they would go to college in California together, but when they time to leave came, Rhea felt the pull to stay in Laurel Springs to help her family run their business and care for her Dad. Though she promised to meet him Rhea never left and Carter never returned. Until now. After the death of his wife, Carter is back in Laurel Springs and is determined to get back the one woman he has always loved. This one is well written with wonderful descriptive qualities. The plot may be one we've all read before with a slight twist, but that doesn't take away from the sweetness of the story. I definitely recommend this one.