May 19, 2014 10 Comments

‘THE HOUSE THAT LOVE BUILT,’ BY BETH WISEMAN. Review of the 2014 contemporary novel. All review text is © Rissi JC

Never reading anything by Beth Wiseman meant that upon opening this novel, there were no expectations. Regardless of a slow beginning, this novel shapes up to be a splendid story full of idiosyncrasies and romanticism that many novelists cannot capture. Looking up Beth’s previous work reveals this story is uncharacteristic to her usual writing, meaning this is a rare departure for her.


STORY: Brooke Holloway is raising her two children after losing her husband to a tragic accident while busily operating her hardware store. Into their small Texas town comes Owen. A man smarting from a painful divorce and in an effort to spite his wife, he purchases her dream house, working to restore it to its former glory. When these two cross paths, in the most unusual circumstances, their hearts awaken, and they discover the healing power of forgiveness.

The House that Love Built, by Beth Wiseman | Book Review


If done well, I’m a sucker for stories that “blend” families. This book isn’t as seeped in that premise as some, but its here. What sets apart this work of fiction is its storytelling proficiency and by extension, its fabulous characteristics . I love the silly antics, and the poignant plots that craft the narrative. All these things are important to any good novel, and this sweet piece of quirky fiction has them all.  

Where some readers may not like Owen’s mindset of his wife, the healing process is actually beautiful. He arrives bitter and looking to inflict pain only to find a kind of saving grace from his own sense of self-justice through his friendship with Brooke. Navigating any kind of relationship between these two protagonists is “awkward” in places, but its in these moments this story is allowed to be at its best. These are what brings the story full circle and gives it a meaningful bent. Honestly, I could have done without one or two of the minor subplots, but that isn’t enough of a negative factor.

The House that Love Built has a sullen teenager and a woman who isn’t right in the head (this one makes me giggle); a bushel of hidden treasure, and is indeed a story built from love.  

About the Book:

(Disclosure: this post does contain affiliate links; if you buy anything through these links, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you. Thank you to anyone who makes a purchase through these links. Read the disclosure page for details.)

Author: Beth Wiseman
Source: Publisher Provided
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2013
Find the Review Elsewhere: AmazonGoodreads | Novel Crossing | WordPress
Shop the Book: Bookshop.org
Rating: 4 ½ out of 5

Sincere thanks to the publisher for providing a complimentary copy of this book for INSPYs consideration.

About Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

Rissi JC

amateur photog. #bookblogger. downton abbey. inspys. internet-photo-shy. writer. the aspiration is to someday write professionally. a girl can dream, right?

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  • Melissa Tagg May 19, 2014 at 1:53 PM

    You know what? I don't think I've ever read a Beth Wiseman book…have I? I'm going to have to Google her books to see if I'm wrong, but I'm thinking I haven't. Your review makes me want to read this one though. Oh, and that cover for her next one–love it!

    • Rissi May 20, 2014 at 3:42 AM

      This novel was SO sweet, Melissa. Loved the silly antics, and one of the first meetings between Owen and Brooke was hilarious. I've never read her books until this just for the fact that the genre she usually writes is not a favorite, however it was lovely to discover this book. Hope you enjoy if/when you read this one. And, yes! That next cover is gorgeous – plus, the blurb has me curious. :)

  • Mrs. Pedersen May 19, 2014 at 4:06 PM

    I read this a while back, and really enjoyed it! :)

    • Rissi May 20, 2014 at 3:43 AM

      Yay! I sure did too, Heather. It was just… lovely. :)

  • Missie May 20, 2014 at 12:49 AM

    I so agree that I love books that blend the family, especially when I have such a blended family in my own life!
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

    • Rissi May 20, 2014 at 3:47 AM

      It's always nice to come across a novel that the reader can relate to. It's cool to know that because of your family, you enjoy "blended" family stories, Missie. I just really loved how Beth wrote this story, so I'm now curious to see what she releases next. :)

  • Tressa S May 21, 2014 at 9:51 PM

    I hadn't seen this one before now and my curiosity is definitely peaked. Not that I need more books to read. Lol! It'll go on my tbr anyway. ;)

    • Rissi May 22, 2014 at 3:37 AM

      It's a lovely piece of charm, Tressa! LOL, yep, that's a feeling I relate to all to well. That TBR? It's about to beat me. ;)



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