Twice Loved is not the usual Wanda Brunstetter novel but refreshingly welcome. A very quick read with such a wonderful and inspiring story. Both main characters have lost spouses to death and are grieving in their own way. Dan is keeping his wife's toy store open while trying to also work in his photography studio. Bev is raising her young daughter while trying to make a living for the two of them in the post World War II period. When she loses her job, she shows up at Dan's store, Twice Loved, in response to an ad she saw in the paper. He hires her on the spot, partly in desperation, and so their lives begin intertwining in work, adventure, laughter and everyday situations. I agree with another reviewer that it reminds me of Grace Livingston Hill books that I grew up on. You won't go wrong spending an hour or two reading this delightful book.
All the previous books I have read which were written by Wanda Brunstetter have all been of the Amish genre and so I really didn't know what to expect when I read this book. It is a sweet and lovely story about hard times following WWII.
The characters in this book were Bev and Dan. Both had lost their mates through illness and war. It was a time when you relied on your faith and the Lord to get you through the rough times, the times of need and loneliness. Wanda's writings are very Christian and family oriented and this book was that. It is a quick read and very enjoyable.
Bev meets Dan after losing her job and finds herself in a toy shop that Dan's late wife had established. The toy shop, called Twice Loved, was a place for used toys and books. Many of these needed to have repairs and to be cleaned and renewed. Beverly takes the job opening at the toy store and although this was nothing like her previous job, does all she can to grow the little shop's business, decorate and sell the used toys, all why caring for her little daughter. She becomes closer to her employer, Dan, and their relationship grows. Their relationship grows through their common faith in God and their Christian ideals. As the store is renewed so is their hope in finding someone to share their lives with, which neither thought was possible before they met.
In this story, you see the kindness of others and the need for people to learn how to accept those kindnesses without taking offense but rather realize that these are God's blessings being poured upon us through the hands of those we come in contact with.
This story was very tender and I enjoyed reading it. At the end was a fun section with historical (wartime) recipes and a bit of historical information. For me, I could really relate to the wartime stories as it was a major part in the lives of my parents who survived prison camps and other wartime hardships. Knowing their sufferings brought this book into real perspective
I read "Twice Loved" last night and couldn't put it down until I finished. To me it was a sweet and loving book, so refreshing for these days and times! Wanda Brunstetter is so good at capturing the subtle details that mean so much in connecting with the characters and this book will hold your attention. It's also special due to being set in the World War II time frame. My parents talked about those days and this made it meaningful to me. I was surprised to see the recipes made during that Era, too. A surprise bonus!
Twice Loved is a sweet holiday story of recovering after loss and healing through peace and love. It has the warmth of Christmas memories and traditions, the history of a country recovering from war, and genuine Christian values for the whole family.
Twice Loved is also a sweet love story. It is not an intense plotline or filled with suspense, like some of Wanda's other books. Rather it is a gentle story with genuine characters and real heartaches. Wanda walks us through the healing process and delivers a great story of love after loss and healing after heartache.
I also like the extra pages of historical facts and war-time recipes. I look forward to trying many of the recipes. And my Christmas celebration will mean more since I have been reminded that not long ago our country faced Christmas very differently and had to struggle through war-torn Christmas celebrations. Thanks to the soldiers, their families and the country standing behind them, we can celebrate freely and fully. Merry Christmas!
And I highly recommend reading Twice Loved as a family Christmas tradition!