I have never felt so exposed, so seen.

I’m not sure I liked that, but the story itself was beautiful.

Bookshop by the Sea tells the story of Sophie Lawson, the eldest daughter in her family, who has put everything on hold for her family, including love. She has put aside her dreams, her opinions, and her boundaries so that her siblings feel as though they can count on her to be there for them. Now, any woman who is the oldest sibling might identify with Sophie on a deeper level than any other character. I know I did. We tend to put aside your own priorities to help a loved one–but we don’t have to.  And when Aiden calls her out on her enabling behavior, she is hurt to the core, as many of us would be. 

As Christians, we are called to set boundaries and keep them. It’s okay to tell our loved ones, “No, you need to figure this out,” and then pray them through it. 

Now, to the rest of the book…

There were times I could almost hear the seagulls and smell the scent of the new books in the bookshop as Jessica Holtan told Sophie and Aiden’s story. Her alliteration, paired with Denise Hunter’s writing, seemed to be the perfect match as I was transported to the bookshop by the sea, the wedding of Sophie’s sister, and the beach house in the heart of a hurricane. I loved it all.

Thank you, Denise and Jessica, for the hours of listening enjoyment. 


About the Book

Bookshop By The Sea

Author: Denise Hunter

Narrated by: Jessica Holtan

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Click here to purchase

Sophie Lawson should be enjoying her sister’s wedding day. But nothing could have prepared her to see the best man again.

After her mother became bedridden and her father bailed on the family, Sophie found herself serving as a second mother to her twin brother, Seth, and younger sister, Jenna. Sophie supported her siblings through their college years, putting aside her own dream of opening a bookshop in Piper’s Cove – the quaint North Carolina beach town they frequented as children.

Now it’s finally time for Sophie to follow her own pursuits. Seth has a new job, and Jenna is set to marry her college beau in Piper’s Cove. But the destination wedding reunites Sophie with best man Aiden Maddox, her high school sweetheart who left her without a backward glance.

When an advancing hurricane strands Aiden in Piper’s Cove after the wedding, he finds the hotels booked to capacity and has to ask Sophie to put him up until the storm passes. As the two ride out the weather, old feelings rise to the surface. The delay also leaves Sophie with mere days to get her bookshop up and running. Can she trust Aiden to stick around? And will he find the courage to risk his heart?

About the Author

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter is the internationally published bestselling author of more than forty novels, three of which have been adapted into Hallmark movies. She has appeared on the The 700 Club and been featured in Southern Living and Woman’s World.

Denise writes heartwarming, small-town love stories, peopled with layered characters who have real-life issues. Her readers enjoy the vicarious thrill of falling in love and the promise of a happily-ever-after sigh as they savor the final pages of her books.

In 1996, inspired by the death of her grandfather, Denise began her first book, writing while her children napped. Two years later it was published, and she’s been writing ever since. Her husband says he inspires all her romantic stories, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too!

When Denise isn’t orchestrating love lives on the written page, she enjoys traveling, drinking chai lattes, hiking, and playing drums. Denise makes her home in Indiana where she and her husband raised three boys and are currently enjoying an empty nest and two beautiful granddaughters.

You can learn more about Denise through her website www.DeniseHunterBooks.com or by visiting her FaceBook page at https://www.facebook.com/authordenisehunter