Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Hearts Surrender, Marianne Evans

Contemporary/Romance /Series
Kiara Jordan is a sophisticated modernista, but beneath an engaging personality and super-model looks, her heart hungers, and she longs for deeper meaning in her life.

Ken Lucerne is the charismatic young pastor of Woodland Church ; he's adjusting to life on his own following the death of his wife and copes by keeping as busy with parish life and mission work as he can.

A home-building mission in Pennsylvania brings them together, and forces them to look hard and deep at the relationship they share, and where God means for it to go. Already bound by mutual respect and caring, love dawns, a love that takes them to a life-point neither would have expected.

After all, can a chic, vivacious woman find fulfillment within the quiet, mission-centered life of a clergyman? Can they trust God's hand strongly enough to surrender their hearts to one another…forever?

“I’ve been the wallflower who bloomed. But I’ve never believed in myself enough to give up the fancy trappings. I've clung to vanity-centered ideals for too long, I suppose. I’ve worked hard to fit in, and finally I succeeded. Problem is, that kind of success is a double-edged sword. That pathway, once you start to follow it, is hard to leave.”

In an unexpected, graceful motion, Ken caught her swing by the chains. He held her in place, suspended backward, with nothing but a cushion of air between them. All at once Kiara went dizzy, tempted once more by that full, supple mouth, and the satiny-looking fall of his thick brown hair. He was close enough to touch. In this moment, she wanted nothing more than to do just that.

“Some time – at some point – I’d like to hear more about that, Kiara. I’d like know how you became the woman you are.”

“I’d bore you to tears. It’s nothing extraordinary.”

“All present evidence to the contrary.” He set her gliding once again and Kiara’s stomach performed a sparkling fall-away. She delighted in his words but forced herself to brush them aside before they could take root and sway her into believing he saw richness to her spirit. After all, it was part of Ken’s persona to be gracious and encouraging.

He continued, “You're moving forward in directions that are not only admirable, but eye-opening – not just for you, most likely, but to everyone who's part of your life. Don't hold to what other people see, or expect of you, Kiara. Be who you are. And while you're at it, create the best version of yourself you can imagine. After all, the only question, with the only relevance that matters, is this: Who are you now?"

When she sailed back his way, he caught the chains of her swing once again and whispered in her ear, "I believe in you."

With that, he released her on a push, sending Kiara on another dizzying spin of sensation. He walked away, retracing his steps up the path to the cabins and mess hall. She swung to a stop then sat in silence for long moments after he left, absorbing, shivering in a way that had nothing at all to do with the cool of the encroaching night.

Five Hearts – Five Heart Sweetheart Winner - The Romance Studio, Brenda Talley

Ms. Evans has once again delivered a book which I could not put down. I had looked forward to it since completing book one, Heart’s Crossing. I was definitely not disap-pointed. After setting such a high standard for herself in her first book, she just proved that she was fully capable of maintaining the level of expert writing we have seen prior to this. After reading this, I cannot wait for the rest of this series. If possible, it just got bet-ter than the first book. I anxiously await the sequels to this book. I commend Ms. Evans for her ability to write such a book and keep our interest high.

4.5 Books – Happily Ever After Reviews, Clare

A sequel to Heart's Crossing, Ms Evans has once again captured the spirit of true love in Hearts Surrender. It's not necessary to have read the first book, to be enchanted by this one, as it stands alone, second in a series of four. This tender love story, not only puts Ken and Kiara through the emotional wringer, captivates the reader's heart as well and more than once I could have done with one of Pastor Ken's hanky's!

Why Marianne Wrote Hearts Surrender:
Folks who are familiar with the Inspirational E-Books blog may recall my first visit here, when I talked about Hearts Crossing. When I finished Hearts Crossing, and waited to find out if it would even be published, the voices of Ken and Kiara, two of the secondary characters, began speaking to me. Actually, I take that back. They weren’t speaking, they were shouting at me for their story to be told. I wrote the sequel, Hearts Surrender, on faith alone – and by God’s grace these books have led to the creation of the Woodland Series. In this book I was very intrigued by the idea of taking a charismatic, energetic young pastor, and finding out what would happen when he fell in love with a vivacious, chic, stylish woman of modern influence. Not a ‘bad girl’ by any stretch, but a woman seeking more in her life than the latest in high style, and relationships that only run surface deep. Kiara is a woman on a faith journey, who struggles with self worth, and Ken is God’s answer to her hearts call.

Take Away:
Always dive beneath the surface of your most important relationships; find the deeper meaning, the God-given purpose of why people are, and remain, a part of your life.

Author Bio:
Marianne Evans has written numerous contemporary romances. Kensington Publishing purchased her first book, Friends & Lovers. Her second, Right Hand Man, followed shortly thereafter. Her third release from Kensington, Hannah’s Heart, won critical acclaim from The Oakland Press. Her fourth book is her inspirational romance debut with White Rose Publishing – a contest winning novella entitled Hearts Crossing.

The success of Hearts Crossing as led to the creation of The Woodland Series. Hearts Surrender, Hearts Communion and Hearts Key will tell the continuing story of characters first introduced in Hearts Crossing, all of which will revolve around Woodland Church. The series will be available in both print and e-book format. Hearts Surrender will be released in late 2010.

A lifelong resident of Michigan, Marianne is an active member of Romance Writers of America. She’s a long-time member of Greater Detroit RWA where she served the chapter in a number of capacities, but most notably for two terms as Chapter President. She also belongs to the Faith Hope and Love chapter of RWA, American Christian Fiction Writers and the Michigan Literary Network.

For more about Marrianne Evans, please visit http://www.marianneevans.com/

Don't forget to leave a comment for a chance to win Marianne's book.


  1. Hi, Shawna! It's so great to be back here at the Inspirational E Books blog! Thanks for being such a lovely hostess. I'm looking forward to spending the day with you all!! Blessings ~ Marianne

  2. This sounds great! Adding it to my TBB list.


  3. Marianne, I am so proud of you! Praying for a blessed day for you with Shawna and your fans. God bless!

  4. I'm looking forward to reading this book! I enjoyed Hearts Crossing so much, and can't wait to read Ken and Kiara's story. Love your writing voice, Marianne!

  5. Brenda, you're a sunbeam! Thanks so much for your visit! God bless.

  6. Congrats on Hearts Surrender, Marianne, and the rest of the series. I've read Hearts Crossing three times and know I'll be doing that and more with this one. God bless you with success! oxoxo

  7. Beautiful excerpt - especially this part...."Be who you are. And while you're at it, create the best version of yourself you can imagine. After all, the only question, with the only relevance that matters, is this: Who are you now?"

    I'm trying to identify that now in my own life. I'd LOVE to see how Kiara accomplishes this.

    Good luck & God's blessings!

  8. Howdy folks! I'm tardy today, but it's good to see that the party started without me. I think Marianne's book sounds great, and I'm so happy she's writing an entire series.

  9. Hmmm, Delia, I responded to your post, but don't see it here, so I want to be sure it gets published (in otherwise, apologies if this comes at you twice! LOL!) I appreciate your compliemnt very much - from a writer of your skill set, it means the world! Blessings!

  10. Tanya my friend, I turn that blessing right around to you! MUCH success on your six novella series coming soon from TWRP! Can't wait to read them all!

  11. Pam, thanks for visiting!! :-) I love that quote as well - I'm so glad it spoke to you! It's one of my favorites in the book, and truly speaks to the battles Kiara faces in her developing relationship with Ken, and her developing faith walk. Your sweetness and support are so deeply appreciated!! God bless you!

  12. Hi there, Shawna! You're a busy lady - two places at once! I've been following the book discussion of No Other on ACFW -- such a wonderful book you've created! Thanks for being such a great hostess! I'm thrilled about writing a series as well - it's a first for me, and I'm absolutely loving it! The connections you can create, and threads of continuity are just awesome!

  13. Marianne my hat is off to you for crafting such a story based on spiritual deepness. I was intrigued by the excerpt, blurb and all. May you reap the benefits of your hard work. Larry

  14. What can I say that hasn't been said? I am still deciding whether to wait for the whole series or nab this one. Blessings, Marianne. You are an encouragement to us all.

  15. Hi, Larry! I'm so glad you checked it out!Thank you for that! This story pulled me, that's for sure - and I really felt like I was on the right path when the words just flowed out of me. I had blocks from time to time, of course, but once a scene would 'gel' - it took off. I only hope readers will be as engaged!! Blessings!

  16. LoRee, you're such an awesome author yourself!!! Thank you for your support! Here's the thing about this series - it's a 'number' series - each book is totally stand alone, despite reoccurring characters. I've told my editor already that I don't rule out going back to Woodland even after book 4 comes out (in fact,a character has emerged in book 4, which is Hearts Key, that has me GREATLY intrigued...) Go for it! LOL!! I appreciate you so much! God bless

  17. Looking forward to reading Hearts Crossing and Heart's Surrender. Both are on my TBR list. I can answer your question on your website. Can they trust God's hand strongly enough to surrender their hearts to one another…forever? Yes.
    I love reading Christian romance.


  18. You're books are amazing, Marianne! God bless you for sharing such wonderful stories.

  19. Oohhh it sure sounds good!!
    Please enter me!

  20. RBoth - I'm with you! I'm a reader, and writer, but first and foremost, I'm such a huge fan of Christian inspirational romance.

  21. Mary, thank you so much!! I appreciate your encouragement!

  22. Leah, I'm so glad you're intrigued! Good luck with the drawing!!

  23. Hi Shawna, your book sounds intriguing and beautiful. I was a huge reader of Christian romances when I was a teen. The sweetness of the stories have a universal appeal.

    I wish you the very best in success.

    Cherish D'Angelo
    aka Cheryl Kaye Tardif

  24. Hearts Surrender sounds touching, I like that it focuses on the "deeper" person. I'd love to be entered in the drawing.

  25. Cheryl, so glad you paid a visit! Your comment hit upon the very reason I've shifted from secular to Christian romance. It's so much more fulfilling!

  26. Hi, Merry! Thanks for the compliment. Indeed, this story takes a long look at diving beneath the surface of our relationships - surface appearances are sometimes so deceiving, aren't they?

  27. Books sounds great! I'd love to be entered in the drawing!