Read A Broken Kind of Beautiful Online

Authors: Katie Ganshert

Tags: #Christian Books & Bibles, #Literature & Fiction, #Romance, #Contemporary, #United States, #Women's Fiction, #Contemporary Women, #Single Women, #Contemporary Fiction, #Religious & Inspirational Fiction, #Christian, #Literary, #Religious, #Religion & Spirituality, #Christian Fiction

A Broken Kind of Beautiful (44 page)

BOOK: A Broken Kind of Beautiful
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Oh, right. “Because I know who I am now.”

“And who is that?”

She was the word that made her mother cry. The word she looked up in the dictionary all those years ago. To buy back, to gain or regain possession of. “Redeemed.”

Davis’s face brightened.

Ivy bit her lip. The very one he’d kissed moments ago. “You told me once that the next time you kissed a girl, it would be because you love her.”

His eyes crinkled in the corner. And without saying a word, he tipped her chin, kissed the uninjured side of her jaw, her neck, the tip of her nose, the middle of her forehead. Kisses so gentle, so soft, so warm that her insides melted. “I may have faults, but lying isn’t one of them.”

“Well then.” She leaned into his embrace and brought her lips to his ear. “I love you too.”

Ivy picked up a white carton left in one of the pews and plunked it inside the large garbage bag Davis held out for her. He wouldn’t stop smiling. All through the pictures. All through the entire show. The grin never left his face. And, heaven help her, she had turned into a goofy, gushy smiler too.

She swatted his arm. “You’re making my stitches hurt.”

“I can’t help it. You’re amazing.”

Amazing.

She smiled again.

The show couldn’t have gone better. As soon as she stopped paying attention to her face, so did everybody else. She even managed to find a replacement for the model who sprained her ankle. Arabella had tried to talk Ivy into walking, since they couldn’t find anyone to fill Ivy’s spot, but that wasn’t her place today. Today, she wasn’t a model. Today, she was Ivy Clark, a woman capable of pulling off a charity event.

She plunked a plastic fork into the garbage bag, still reeling over the outpouring of donations that came in after Sara’s announcement. When Sara broached the idea of donating the proceeds toward the Twila Welch Fund, Marilyn asked the audience to consider the possibility and vote anonymously at the end of the event. Instead, they received a standing ovation. It seemed Ivy wasn’t the only one who’d been taken captive by the young girl. “Any guesses on how much money we made?”

“No idea.” The garbage bag crinkled in Davis’s hand as he turned toward the back of the sanctuary, where Marilyn stood over a foldout table, organizing the money from the metal lockbox. “Have you finished counting yet?”

Marilyn slid several bills through her hands. “Not yet. But I tell you what. I’ve never seen this church so crowded in my life.”

Pastor Voss popped up from a pew, his own garbage bag slung over his shoulder. “Hey!”

“No offense, Pastor.”

Sara laughed.

Ivy bent over and picked up a torn ticket.
Something New Fashion Show Extravaganza
.

Davis finished his row and joined Ivy in hers. “How about as soon as we finish cleaning, we all head over to the hospital with some ’mater sandwiches and share the news with Annie and Twila?”

With a widening smile, Ivy folded up the ticket and slipped it inside her pocket. The show might be over, but the best part was yet to come.

E
PILOGUE

Ivy never went back to New York. She stayed in Greenbrier and lived with Marilyn and Sara in the house that had once belonged to James. Sara attended college, and Ivy and Marilyn became a dynamic force in the bridal industry. Then Sara married Jordan, and Ivy married Davis, and they moved out of James’s house and into their own homes and started their own families.

The barren woman became a grandmother of six.

Davis made a name for himself doing what his father taught him all those years ago in the mountains of Telluride—capturing God’s creation behind a lens and sharing that beauty with a hurting world. With time, Ivy’s injuries healed, but the scars remained—a maze of thin white lines along her cheek and jaw. Reminding her that, yes, she had been hurt. And, yes, something had been stolen. But she didn’t remain that way.

God did not leave her broken.

Like the name of the boutique Marilyn had opened all those years ago when Ivy ran off to New York City, He gathered her broken pieces and made something new.

R
EADERS
G
UIDE

  1. Do you think
A Broken Kind of Beautiful
is a good title for this book? What do you think it means? If you were to give this novel a different title, what would it be?
  2. Ivy Clark is not your typical Christian novel heroine. Did you like her? Why or why not? What are some of Ivy’s redeeming qualities? Do you know any women like Ivy?
  3. Our pasts play a huge role in shaping who we become and what we believe. How did Ivy’s past shape her beliefs and who she became? In what ways has your own past shaped who you are today and what you believe? Do you think it’s possible to overcome our pasts? Why or why not?
  4. All right, let’s gush! This is a romance novel, after all. What was your favorite romantic moment between Davis and Ivy?
  5. Although this is technically a romance novel, there was a romantic thread that went deeper than the burgeoning love between Ivy Clark and Davis Knight. What was it?
  6. Beauty is an important theme in this novel. How does the world define beauty? In what ways do you struggle to measure up to the world’s definition?
  7. Marilyn Olsen is nothing at all like the archetypical wicked stepmother. Of all the characters in this novel, what made Marilyn best suited to be an example of Christlike love for Ivy? How would the novel have changed if Davis replaced Marilyn in this particular role? Who has exemplified Christ’s love in your life?
  8. Marilyn felt God calling her to love Ivy, the daughter of her cheating husband and his mistress. How would you have reacted if you were
Marilyn? Have you ever had a moment where you felt called to something that didn’t make sense?
  9. Davis struggles with fully accepting God’s forgiveness. Because he can’t let go of the guilt he feels over what happened to Sara, he punishes himself by refusing to do what he loves—photography. Could you relate to Davis’s struggle? Why or why not? If you were Sara, would you want Davis to continue as a photographer?
10. “It doesn’t matter if I forgive you. It doesn’t even matter if you forgive you. What matters, Davis, is that God already has.” Discuss Sara’s comment. Do you agree or disagree? Why?
11. Sara came to see the blessing in her blindness. Has God ever used a tragedy in your life to bring about blessing? Share with the group.

A
CKNOWLEDGMENTS

You would think that writing books would get easier with practice. Alas, it does not.

My second novel was more challenging than my first, and this one was more challenging than the second. But as long as God keeps giving me stories to tell, then tell them I shall. But not without thanking some people first …

My husband, who deserves an award. Being married to a writer is no easy feat, and yet he does it so well. Cooking and cleaning and entertaining our son, all so his neurotic wife can meet her deadlines. Thank you, Ryan, for loving me … even when I’m pulling out my hair or locked away in my office. I don’t deserve you.

My family, with mad props to my dad and my mom and my aunt Peggy for entertaining the B-man for hours on end, all so I can have some working time. You have no idea how much easier you make my life or how much richer you make Brogan’s. I could not do this without you.

My church family and small group and women’s Bible study, my crazy junior high girls, adoption comrades (with a special shout out to Corie G. and Carrie P.), and every single one of my writerly soul mates. Your support keeps me going.

My agent, Rachelle Gardner, for assuring me that, yes, I can do this.

My editors, Shannon Marchese, Lissa Halls Johnson, and Laura Wright, for refusing to let me settle for good enough.

The entire phenomenal team at WaterBrook Multnomah who truly go above and beyond. Each and every one of you cares deeply in the power of story to change lives, and it absolutely shines through in your work. I know I’ve said it before, but I will say it again (and again and again). It is an honor to work with you.

Erica and Jeannie, critique partners extraordinaire.

Every single reader, with an extra special squeeze to my fabulous launch team. If this book has any measure of success, it is because you picked it up and shared it. Thank you for reading. Thank you for sharing. Thank you for encouraging. My prayer forever and always is that the stories I tell would draw hearts closer to the only One who can redeem.

And “to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.”

Also available from Katie Ganshert!

Architect Bethany Quinn is comfortable being the creator, but not acknowledging one. So when tragedy takes her back home, can she keep avoiding the God of her childhood?

Widow and single mom Robin Price has worked hard to get her business and life in order. Will the handsome Ian McKay undo all her plans?

For bonus features on these books, visit
KatieGanshert.com
.
To read excerpts from these books and more go to
WaterBrookMultnomah.com
!
BOOK: A Broken Kind of Beautiful
11.42Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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