For most of her life, Caroline Sweeney put the needs of others before herself. When her friends went off to college and exotic European cities, she stayed home in Beaufort to look after her Dad and brother, and whoever else needed her help.
At twenty-eight, she’s invited to embark on her own adventure when a friend offers Caroline an amazing job opportunity in Barcelona.
Meanwhile, her home town is calling her to stay. Unexpectedly, Caroline inherits the run-down, money-pit Frogmore Café.
Caroline must choose between a Beaufort treasure, the Frogmore Café, and the unusual Barcelona adventure. If that’s not enough, Caroline finds herself torn between two loves–a very hunky deputy Sheriff and a returning hometown boy, a country music star.
In the midst of her trials, Caroline shares a lot of laughter with her friends and discovers the sweet fragrance of Jesus as He pursues her heart.
Romantic Times Book Club wrote:
“Hauck adorable novel contains the multi-layered character readers have come to expect from her books. The enjoyable story and unpredictable ending entertains and offers much to think about.”
Rach–from where did this story idea come?
The final product is a long way from the original story idea. Several years ago I had a thought, “What if a girl ended up hosting a TV cooking show, but she couldn’t cook?”
I had the title Sweet Caroline and knew I wanted to write a book set in the beautiful South Carolina lowcountry, so I tried to put my cooking show story in Beaufort.
But it didn’t work on a few levels, and I added the element of Caroline working at the Frogmore Café. In the end, I had to cut the cooking show story line to focus on Caroline’s life in Beaufort.
I also wanted to write about a woman who willingly set aside her life for others. Yes, she struggles with esteem and fears, but she is also confident enough to venture out if the right opportunity came along. But she’s content to stay home, meet the needs of others.
At the story opening, Caroline doesn’t know God or that He has a plan for her. Yet she’s spent a lot of time talking to “whoever’s up there, if anyone.”
One evening Jesus introduces Himself to her. While most of us meet Jesus through hearing and watching others, Jesus is able to touch our hearts in many non-traditional ways. I opted to show that with Caroline. It was fun.
Reminds me a bit of George Bailey in “It’s a Wonderful Life.” How everyone else goes off to make their fortunes, but George stays behind to tend the old savings and loan. Of course, George can’t cook. 🙂
When does the book release?
February 12, from Thomas Nelson.
We’ll be looking for it! Thanks for dropping by!