Second Chances {Book Review – Wishing on Willows by Katie Ganshert}

Willow Tree Café owner and mother of a three-year-old, adorably energetic son, Robin Price struggles with the lasting grief of losing her husband and the business trials of operating a small-town café. Ian McKay, a developer in his father’s company, needs to build in Robin’s town of Peaks, Iowa to boost his dad’s company out of a few problems.

Two strong wills clash. Two grief-stricken hearts straining to cope. How can we determine when God wants us to fight and when He wants us to move on?

Wishing on Willows by Katie Ganshert - an interview at Under God's Mighty Hand

A contemporary novel set in this small Iowa town, Wishing on Willows is author Katie Ganshert’s second published novel. This novel is expertly written and absorbing from the beginning. (And isn’t the book cover gorgeous? I’m not a “pink” person, but the blend of colors and style of this coverare captivating.) With the blur of action and emotion poured into the first six pages, readers quickly get a feel for some of the conflict the characters are enduring. Strong, yet varying personalities keep readers immersed and allow for readers to relate to at least one character.

With vivid writing full of imagery and action, I found myself most intrigued by the author’s descriptions of minor action. I played out motions as I read, like a reflex (“scrunching one eye”) as a reflex of my own. Readers won’t frequently find clichéd phrases when such emotional descriptions exist, like “…if she did, she’d spend the rest of the night piecing them back together with tape and desperation” (p. 45, Wishing on Willows) or “concern whipped her insides into stiff, pointed peaks – sharp and overbeaten” (p. 59).

The author allowed little glimpses of what events might occur ahead, both good and troublesome, which kept me eagerly reading. Even more enthralling, the characters seem real—flawed, interesting, unsure, and dedicated. Wishing on Willows book review

This novel is not a book about people finding God for the first time, but rather those who knew Him re-finding Him, trusting Him, and relying on Him again. The book maintains faith as foundational to the core of the story and evident throughout, but not overbearing or too preachy.

A fantastic read by who is now one of my new favorite authors, I highly recommend reading Wishing on Willows by Katie Ganshert.

I had the awesome (and fun!) honor of interviewing Katie here on my blog last week. Check it out!
Katie includes a ton of awesome “extras” on her website, too. Go here to see a video from Katie, “behind the scenes” information with her characters, fun facts about Wishing on Willows, and book club offers.


A few fun offers:

  • Wishing on Willows releases on March 19, 2013. If you pre-order the book, you can receive 7 bonus devotions based on themes from the novel! If you pre-order by March 18th (the day before release), fill out this form on Katie’s website to receive your extra gift.
  • On release day (Tuesday, March 19th), Katie is hosting a Wishing on Willows Extravaganza,” from 6-7 pm central time on her Facebook page. It’s a live streaming event with Q&As, special guests, and prize pack giveaways from the characters of the novel! Go here on Tuesday, March 19th from 6-7 pm (Central time) for the fun!
  • Another bonus: I have the pleasure of giving away an extra copy of Wishing on Willows to one of you! Just fill out the Rafflecopter form below. You can choose how many times you’d like to enter! (If you’re receiving this post via email, you must click through to the blog itself to enter the giveaway.)

This giveaway is open from Monday, March 11, 2013 until Saturday, March 16, 2013 at 11:59pm EDT. A winner will be chosen and notified by email shortly after.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms of Giveaway: This giveaway is open to US residents only and will end at the end of the day March 16, 2013 (EDT). All entrants must be 18 years old or older. Enter through the Rafflecopter below. Incomplete entries will be deleted. Once a winner is selected, I will contact them via email. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, I will select another winner.

Our God offers second (and multiple!) chances to trust, love, serve, and more. When is one instance in your life when you were graced with the gift of a second chance?

Disclaimer: I was provided two copies of this book (one to review and one to give away) free from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.

4 thoughts on “Second Chances {Book Review – Wishing on Willows by Katie Ganshert}

  1. ticiaM

    I suppose you want more specific than every day? I of course can’t think of a more specific example right now :)

  2. Maxie Lloyd-Hamilton Anderson

    Forgot to answer the question about second chances chances. Besides the many other times I have been given many second chances from God when making mistakes in my life, one being giving me a great chance of marriage to a wonderful man of God, after divorce. He was a great christian man, father, stepdad, and friend to many.

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