- File Size: 9230 KB
- Print Length: 364 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0764235583
- Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (March 31, 2020)
- Publication Date: March 31, 2020
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B07VQKQ2C9
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #166,739 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Digital List Price:||$14.99|
|Print List Price:||$14.99|
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Before I Called You Mine Kindle Edition
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|Length: 364 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||
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From the Back Cover
Joshua may be a substitute teacher by day, but Lauren finds his passion for creating educational technology as fascinating as his antics in the classroom. Though she does her best to downplay the undeniable connection between them, his relentless pursuit of her heart puts her commitment to stay unattached to the test and causes her once-firm conviction to waver.
With an impossible decision looming, Lauren might very well find herself choosing between the two deepest desires of her heart . . . even if saying yes to one means letting go of the other.
"A Carol Award-winner, as well as a RITA and Inspy nominee for her inspirational romance novels, Deese is also an adoptive parent, which shapes her latest novel. . . . Deese's involving novel is full of genuine feeling and compelling challenges."--Booklist starred review --This text refers to the paperback edition.
About the Author
Mikhaila Aaseng is an in-demand narrator with a background in film and stage acting. --This text refers to the audioCD edition.
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The plot of Before I Called You Mine drew me in first, or rather, the journey of Lauren Bailey adopting as a single mother. It's a unique story, one I rarely see in real life, let alone fiction. I think as well-meaning as Christians usually are, a lot of us still hold onto the idea singles cannot be called on to do anything big; they can't be chosen by God to do anything monumental or challenging. Allegedly, that's for married people who have their lives "together." How refreshing and encouraging then, to see Lauren taking the motherhood journey, especially since I am still single, childless, and figuring out my purpose at 34. Lauren is a tenacious, tenderhearted, faithful, and realistically flawed protagonist who gave me hope.
Lauren and Joshua also gave me hours of reading pleasure as I watched them grow, as a couple and apart. I loved, loved, loved the fact that they were both teachers and could bond over education, introducing kids to literature, and loving children with all their hearts. The lesson plan scene was one of my favorites, but every scene they were in together pops off the page, romantic or not. That's not to say Nicole is a slouch at writing romance, though--on, no! The baklava scene, the tree lighting scene, the crab-fest...swoon, swoon, swoon! Joshua might be a male in a still-female-dominated job, he might be a fashion disaster--but my gosh, if he were real, Lauren would have major competition!
What stands out most to me about this story though, is how it's less about romance--which fiction has a ton of these days--and more about Lauren's relationship with her adopted child, and through that, her relationship with God. The spiritual threads here are pretty subtle, woven in so well that when you're meant to notice them, they stand out without being obnoxious. A key example for me occurred when Lauren recognized the selfish roots of her journey, because boy, don't we all have selfish roots, even when we try to do the righteous thing, the merciful thing, the Godly thing? Filthy rags indeed...but that made seeing God redeem the roots and restore what Lauren lost so much more powerful. Not because Lauren suddenly becomes perfect, but because she finds herself incredibly blessed and loved anyway.
Lauren's relationship with her adopted child is the crux of the novel and worth every moment of the wait when you finally get there. Seeing them meet and bond is when I cried--happy tears. But Nicole made that happen without melodrama. Her writing throughout is simple, straightforward, and honest--sometimes wrenchingly honest--regarding humanity and human emotions. Whether her next book is a more "traditional" romance or something along these lines (I hope so), I can't wait to read more of her books and see more of her talent.
This is what Lauren was striving to do and yet, things didn’t seem to go as she planned.
I loved this story because I related to the characters in this book. I work in a school, and so many of the images in this book left me feeling connected. I totally understood the desire to teach and the love of reading that the main characters had. There was also, drama from family dynamics, and times of sadness, which will touch your heart. As well as, some cute quirky dialog through texts, and sweet romance, which will leave you with warm fuzzies.
The one thing I don’t have personal experience with is adoption. In this book, the main character has a strong desire to adopt a child from China. The book covers all the many regulations and paperwork which can feel overwhelming. In addition, the long waiting period for things to happen. I have watched family members and a few friends go through this process which seemed to take a long time. However, I know that each of these families would tell you how precious the time was and how blessed they are now to have that child in their lives.
The author, Nicole Deese, has put so much of her heart in this book. I knew about this book before it came out and was really looking forward to reading it.
I highly recommend you pick this book up and read it. It just might change your way of looking at things.
I was given this book by the publisher which did not influence my review in any way, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
I literally turned the final page in your new book a minute or two ago and just had to email you.
This. Is. Your. Best. Book. Yet.
I rarely cry when reading a book, but yours had me in tears several times. I knew before I read it that you and your husband had your own adoption story, and so knowing that while reading Before I Called You Mine made it extra special. To hear your heart-felt journey melded into a fictional story was simply magical. Thank you for adopting. Thank you for sharing this beautiful story. It touched my heart deeply. I have read many (all??) of your books, and although they are all wonderful, this one stands head and shoulders above the rest.
Any ways... just had to reach out and let you know. Your daughter (and sons!) are privileged to call you Mama.
Top international reviews
I think many Christian romance authors have to navigate the minefield (an overly dramatic description for sure) of wiring a solid romance and also addressing weighty questions about faith and life. I've read it go either way a lot of times. On one hand, there are romances that are too caught up in the fluffy and give too light a touch on serious faith matters. On the other hand, there have been books where I've skipped larger portions of sermons and postulations that lack any practical depth.
Before I Called You Mine is a fairly perfect interweaving of real life and real faith (in real time, I might add). It's a powerful story that really delves into the intricacies of what it means to follow God and make the difficult choices that usually ensue and (read 'and' here in italics) has a very strong romance plot. In fact, the romance is so potent and sweet that I think Joshua (the male lead) is too perfect. 😂 Do such men exist? Here's to hoping. Sigh. One other things is that it seemed like is was Joshua who was making all the sacrifices - which seems neither realistic nor reasonable.
I'll leave you with the main thrust/question the author explores in this beautiful novel: 'What is the hard that God's asking me to partner with Him in?'