"Wildflowers From Winter" was one of those books that I couldn't put down. Its powerful story grabbed me and wouldn't let go. It is a story that is difficult to read at times because the characters are so real that it is too easy to sympathize with their tragedies and grief as if they were actually a part of your life.
Bethany has nearly achieved the goals she only dreamed of as a teen when suddenly the rug is pulled out from under her feet. About the same time, Bethany receives tragic news regarding her former best friend. Although she has vowed to never return to her home town, Bethany decides she owes it to her friend to pay her respects then leave quickly. Once there she is compelled to stay despite her reservations. Then another death adds to the burdens already on her heart.
Bethany is a complex character who at first seems cynical and cold. Flashbacks gradually reveal the pain in her past and reasons for her resistance to God and close relationships. Her encounters with Evan Price are at first prickly but evolve into a trusting friendship. Bethany's journey from a lonely young woman who is angry at God to one who is finally open to love from both Evan and God is a sometimes heart rending tale that is also filled with hope.
I find it incredible to believe that this is Katie Ganshert's first novel. If "Wildflowers From Winter" is an example, I can't wait for her next novel.