Shade believes her prayers are answered when she meets a Christian man who offers her marriage and a name for her newborn child. But when her husband suddenly dies years later, she uncovers secrets from his past—secrets so profound they derail the lives of both her and her daughter. Seeking to rebuild her life and independence, Shade moves to a small Michigan beach town and falls in love. The relationship, however, can never be. Her internal struggle to honor her vow to God, while denying her own desires, throws her on a path of attempted redemption.
Print book length, approximately 380 pages.
A woman wrestles with her faith while trying to move on from a complicated relationship in Miller's elegant, penetrating debut. Shade Doe's life is turned upside down when her husband, Stan, dies suddenly from a heart attack. Shade, who met and married Stan when she was a pregnant teenager, idolized her husband for the entirety of their 20-year marriage. Now 36, she is shocked when she discovers that the man she married was a monster who had been abusing her daughter, Addy. Moving to the coast of Michigan, Shade attempts to repair the broken relationship between herself and Addy, who struggles with substance abuse and who also became a mother as a teen, to two-year-old Tyler. Shade fears that her daughter's addiction has created a home unfit for Tyler, and when she is suddenly left with the responsibility of taking care of him, she must double her efforts at the bakery where she works. As Tyler grows up, she meets Brent, Tyler's baseball coach, and she feel herself opening up to romance for the first time in years. Only a renewed faith in God's love is able to bring Shade out of her self-loathing. Fans of Karen Kingsbury will love this affecting tale of redemption. (BookLife)
Must read again!!!
Wow.... I didn’t see that coming!!!! At times, I thought the writing was a little rough but then it made more sense near the end. I’ll have to re-read it!!! I yelled, I cried... a book that can bring those emotions out of the reader is always worth the read.
Don’t miss this one. It’s a winner!
The Essence of Shade by Deborah Jean Miller is my newest must-read recommendation. It has all the requirements of a great story.
Love- love is prevalent throughout the book.
Conflict- every great story has multiple degrees of conflict.
Mystery- life is full of secrets just like this book. Many are inconsequential, some are huge and life altering.
Romance- enduring unrequited love.
Food- I love the addition of deliciously described food.
Shock- a bombshell from out of the blue.
Add all this together and you get a thought-provoking page turner full of life and it’s ups & downs, humor, great characters, wonderful recipes, beautifully described settings, and so much more. The generational relationships are especially poignant in this book.
I can confidently recommend The Essence of Shade to readers of women’s fiction, faith based fiction, and even cozy mysteries.