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STEPHANIE’S SURPRISE
FRAN SHAFF
ISBN#: Paperback-9781594264504/9781594264498
January 2008
Mundania Press LLC
6470 A. Glenway Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45211-5222
Trade Paperback/E-Book
$13.95/$6.00
227 Pages
Historical Romance
Rating: 3 Cups

Stephanie Porter teaches at Heart Junction’s school. Even though she is a wonderful teacher, her heart longs for more. She had always thought that a high social standing and successful husband would come her way, when the time was right. If that is not to be, than she will just have to make her own way in the world, even if it will be a lonely path.

Dr. Aaron Wesley takes a position on the school board in hope of attracting the Stephanie Porter's attention. Her cool demeanor towards him is somewhat baffling, but he loves a good challenge. Aaron believes Stephanie to be one of the loveliest women he has ever seen, and he is determined to get her to like him. He intends to court her, and if it takes all summer to convince her to notice him…so be it.

Stephanie abhors arrogance, and in her opinion, Aaron Wesley reeks of it. She cannot ignore, however, the flutter of unease that consumes her whenever he is near. Only one other man has made her feel that way, and now he is married to her best friend. She does not want to be attracted to Aaron. The man is a doctor and she has vowed never to become involved with doctors. The longer they spend together, though, the more their mutual attraction grows. In a community as conventional and Christian as Heart Junction the barest hint of impropriety could destroy both of their lives. Aaron takes a radical move to keep them both above reproach, but he may have just cost them a future together. Stephanie fights to become the first female principal of the school, even when in her heart she longs to be a nurse. The entire situation becomes unbearable, as she and Aaron are pushed further and further apart. How can she accept his love when he keeps secrets from her, and how can Aaron expect Stephanie to set aside something that she has worked so hard to achieve?

This story is a lovely but sad look at life in the small town of Heart Junction. The characters are bound by the strict and often times prejudicial structures of society. Stephanie longs to be accepted, making her appear shallow and self-centered at first. Only when she accepts her true feelings, does her character really blossom. Aaron also deals with his own self-discovery, but his character is steadfast in his need to keep Stephanie’s reputation intact. Their love for each other will only grow as long as they are honest with each other, and leave the matrons of society to mind their own business. This love story is tender and sweet, even in the shadow of an arrogant, narrow-minded society.

Lototy
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance
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