Twice Loved by Wanda E Brunstetter, tells the story of two lonely hearts that find happy contentment with one another after each has lost their mates by death. It's a quick read - a book chick flick, you might say.
Twice Loved is set in 1945 after World War II (#ww2) has just ended and America is still trying to recover from the #greatdepression and the shortages brought on by the war. Bev's husband was killed in the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941 and Dan's wife had died, sadly,in 1943 with Leukemia. The story covers 3 months - Oct thru Dec.
Bev struggles with situations beyond her control. Her boss made improper advances to ward her, which she refused, and then fired her, saying he needed to let one of the returning veterans have their bookkeeping job in the company back. She is raising her little girl alone, without even help from her parents, since they were killed in a car accident a year before, and is not having any success in finding another job. Following a lead in the Help Wanted section of the newspaper and trying to comfort her little girl with a new baby doll, she finds what seems to be the perfect job for her, but ends up wondering if it really was. Her little girl quickly forms an attachment to her mother's new boss, Dan, while Bev struggles with feelings she thinks she should not be feeling. With the help of a note left by Dan's deceased wife, and the innocence of her little girl, Bev begins to realize it's alright that she is falling in love with Dan.
Ever since Dan's wife passed away two years before, Dan has been trying to keep his wife's dream -a used toy store named Twice Loved - alive and retain his successful photography business at the same time. At the beginning of the story, he is still deeply grieved and in love with his deceased wife. But, it turns out, she is the one who releases him to love again.
It is a small book, hardbound but lightweight,with good sized print which makes it easy and quick reading, especially if you're having some vision problems as I am. This little book contains only 131 pages so, to set the stage, reveal the plot and conclude, the author must move the story along quickly. However, my wish is that the internal struggling of their hearts could have been portrayed with a little more depth. In my humble opinion, it would have been better to have begun the story at least 6 months before the happy conclusion at the end. I'm relieved it was simply an admission of love by both and not an engagement!
(This little book is considered a historical romance, so a great little surprise at the end of this book is a section of Wartime recipes!)
Since, best I can tell, there is no sequel to this book, I considered how I might conclude this story if I wrote the sequel. I will have them date, attend church together and get to know one another in depth. Bev's little girl will almost always be included in their times together. Still, I forsee Amy ends up getting a little jealous and peeved at Dan for stealing so much of her moms attention. Bev may have some thoughts of reconsidering when she finally receives a lost letter written by her husband as he struggled with the bloodshed all around him and the reality that he might never make it home and assures her that she has been the love of his life and will always be. Perhaps I will have Dan surprise Bev with a proposal and a ring on Mother's day, with little Amy joining in on planning the surprise. This will continue the element of surprises the author created in Twice Loved. Bev will keep the second hand toy store open, hoping to brighten the lives of other little children and cheer the heart of other single parents, mostly mothers, who have lost their spouses in the war or to illness and are struggling to make ends meet. I'll let them have a June wedding like I did. They will have lots of friends at the wedding, some of whom they met through the store and others when delivering care surprises (great, gently used toys) to little needy children in the hospitals. Their church family will join them joyfully, Amy will be the flower girl, and they will seal their commitment with a kiss and look forward to a happy, contented life together, knowing both their first spouses would approve.
How I would love to attend Wanda's Fan Filled Weekend! To see more of this authors books go to http://www.wandabrunstetter.com/