Magnolia Storms {A Book Review}

**I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own. 




Maggie Marovich couldn’t save her father or her home from Hurricane Katrina, but she’s dedicated her life to meteorology so she can warn others when the monster storms approach. Except…she works three hours inland and rarely risks returning to her childhood hometown of Ocean Springs, Mississippi. Both her single-parent sister and the ship pilot Maggie once loved refused to leave the Coast, despite Maggie’s requests. Now a hurricane’s headed toward Mississippi, and Maggie’s sister is seriously injured, leaving Maggie little choice but to head south—into the storm.The water and tides flow through Josh Bergeron’s veins, and he can’t imagine giving up piloting—even for the love of his life, the infuriating Magnolia Marovich. He tried to move on without her, marrying and having a child. But after his wife abandons him and his little boy, his career choice is threatened by the weight of his parental responsibilities. Moving next door to Maggie’s sister and sharing their child care seems like the perfect set-up. Until Maggie blows back into town.Being forced to lean on Josh for help washes up the wreckage in Maggie’s faith. Where was God during the destruction of Katrina? Why do some prayers seem to go unanswered? Between the hurricane looming in the Gulf and another gale raging in her heart, can Maggie overcome her past and find the trust to truly live?


Janet W. Ferguson grew up in Mississippi and received a degree in Banking and Finance from the University of Mississippi. She has served as a children's minister and a youth volunteer. An avid reader, she worked as a librarian at a large public high school. Janet and her husband have two grown children, one really smart dog, and a cat that allows them to share the space.


Not long ago, I had the chance to read book #3 in the Coastal Heart series (The Art of Rivers).  I really enjoyed that story and that introduction to the author's beautiful style, so I was excited to go back and read the first in the series and see where it all started. I have to say, I enjoyed this one even more.

Right away, I was drawn to the character of Maggie. As someone who struggles with anxiety and living in fear, I saw so much of myself in this character. Even her fear of storm is one that I could relate to all too well, as storms in general are one of my greatest phobias. To be honest, even talk of storms can sometimes get my nerves going so had I not received this as a 'blind read', it might not have been one that I would have picked up for myself for that reason... but it was one I so very much needed to read. Magnolia Storms offered a beautiful story about not living in fear of the storms- literal and figurative- but in trusting that God is there with us through them. That is a reminder that I need often, as the storms constantly come our way. Just like in this story, some of those storms are literal storms- such as hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. More often though, they are the storms of life--- when life just doesn't seem to go quite as planned. Though this is a work of fiction, it truly is a great reminder filled with scriptural references that I feel so many of us could benefit from reading. I know I did.

While I felt like the faith aspect of this book really was the major focus of this story, it's also a great romance too. I love a good second chance romance, and this one certainly was that. The chemistry between Josh and Maggie was absolutely fantastic, and oh-so-believable. I think knowing their history, it lent a sense of realness to the story that I enjoyed. The addition of Josh's son made their love story even more sweet, and truly had me rooting for things to work out between the two in the end.

I love how beautifully Janet W. Ferguson is able to take very real issues that so many of us deal with in our lives, and create a heartwarming, inspirational love story from that. It is what I loved in The Art of Rivers, and it is something that I saw again in Magnolia Storms. Overall, this was a great read and one that I very much enjoyed. I look forward to finishing up the series and reading more from this author in the future!


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