Welcome to February! Let’s kick off the month with Twice Sold Tales, a used bookshop in Minnesota that’s struggling. Harper inherited it, and is definitely overwhelmed. Trying to do the “Should do” list and losing her joy along the way.
And Noah just discovered a son he wasn’t told about, and now he’s a single dad…
But it’s fiction, so the big things get worked out before the end of the story.
Please note that this post contains affiliate links for your convenience. If you make a purchase through one of the links, I may make a small commission. I only recommend books and resources that I’ve enjoyed personally, or believe that you would like. You can read my full disclosure here. You will also find information on Scripture translations there.
About the Book
Book: Twice Sold Tales
Author: Chautona Havig
Genre: Christian / Romantic Women’s Fiction
Release date: November 2, 2022
If only owning a bookstore didn’t mean dealing with people.
No one was more surprised than Harper Brevig when Great Aunt Lorene (not “Lori,” thank-you-very-much) died and left her least favorite niece her bookstore–including a prime piece of real estate in downtown Red Wing, Minnesota.
Making a go of the place shouldn’t be too hard. With her library science degree, she should be set. Then again, the website describing library degrees had said it would teach her excellent communication skills. It had not. Could she get a partial refund?
Still, owning the building should mean crazy-low overhead to offset her less than optimal “book-side” manner. Ahem. So when yet another huge bill arrives, and she starts getting twitchy about the low bank balance, Harper does the only thing she can think of.
Enter Milton Coleridge. He’d been excited about the possibilities of the store last year, but Harper had sent him packing before he could talk to her about them. Now he has a chance to make a difference. But she’s right. She’s bleeding money, and it doesn’t make sense!
Milton’s job is to figure out what’s going on, plug the financial leak, and maybe… do a little matchmaking. That dad with the adorable little boy would be good for her… and she’d be good for him. Probably.
Twice Sold Tales: the first full-length novel in the Bookstrings series releasing with The Mosaic Collection
Click here to get your copy!
I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Milton better in this story. You can really feel his longing for more than his current life of wandering the country, just him and Atticus. Helping turn struggling businesses around is easy for him, but this new venture of helping BOOK store owners thrive, and maybe even find their match in the process is where his passion comes alive.
Bennie is the star of the story (Sorry Harper, but he’s even better than your awesome bookish t-shirt slogans). There were times I wanted to fight someone on his behalf, moments I wanted to hug him. And I had to restrain myself from adding Bennie and Noah to my life group prayer list!!! BTW, Your costume is the best ever!
For a guy who just discovered he had a 6 year old son, and suddenly fighting to understand single parenthood, with a child who wasn’t well cared for before, Noah’s doing pretty good. He’s understandably a mess, as his whole world got turned upside down, but he’s determined to fight through the learning curve and the vastly different interests, to the beauty of family.
I’m sure the other reviews will tell you how wonderful and distracted and compassionate and confused and smart Harper is, so I’ll end here.
I tell you, these guys are like friends now. and you’re not going to want to miss a word!
I received a copy of the book from the author, and Celebrate Lit, and chose to review it here. All thoughts are my own.
About the Author
USA Today Bestselling author Chautona Havig lives in an oxymoron, escapes into imaginary worlds that look startlingly similar to ours and writes the stories that emerge. An irrepressible optimist, Chautona sees everything through a kaleidoscope of It’s a Wonderful Life sprinkled with fairy tales. Find her at chautona.com and say howdy—if you can remember how to spell her name.
More from Chautona
“What kind of research does a contemporary book need? I mean, she’s a bookstore owner in a town you’ve been to several times. What’s there to research?”
I can’t be the only author to get questions like this. And I certainly can’t be the only one who has to fight the urge to laugh. Folks, authors research everything. In Twice Sold Tales, I think I looked up almost as much as I did in my Meddlin’ Madeline Mysteries!
Because here’s the deal. What I didn’t know about Red Wing, Minnesota wouldn’t have hurt the story most of the time. Who cares that Bev’s Café has amazing creamy cucumbers? It doesn’t technically matter. Well, except to my character who hates veggies but will eat those. They make her feel virtuous. And you get to know about it.
But… what you discover about a place or a time or an occupation or whatever can totally change the course of your story. Case in point? I went to a website about River City Days because my niece suggested it might be a good thing for Noah to do with his son. That led me to the Farmer’s Markets and to other things. How I got to the first Ghost Walk in Red Wing taking place this year? I don’t even know. What I do know is that the moment I read about it, I knew Harper had to go. And if she did, and if Milton were the instigator, Noah had to go. #BecauseMatchmaker.
And this is where it got really cool. To make the walk as authentic as I could, I read everything I could find about it. And I discovered something super cool. Like… blow you out of the water cool.
Red Wing, Minnesota sits near the shore of Lake Pepin. Little House on the Prairie lovers will remember this as the lake that Laura Ingalls crossed in the wagon as they left the Big Woods of Wisconsin (you know, right across the river/lake from Red Wing???) Well… Lake Pepin has a monster—the Nessie of the Mississippi. Yes, you read that right… a monster! I went looking and guess what? The “monster” has a name. Pepie! Needless to say, Pepie became a an important part of my story. Because how could he not?
Don’t forget to try Kindle Unlimited for Free.