Fender Barnes profits from an institution he doesn’t believe in: marriage. He’s a talented designer, but a reluctant jewelry store owner, thanks to his pop’s retirement. He’s cynical, he’s jaded, he’s not entirely certain about the concept of love, but he’s happy to sell an eager young guy an engagement ring for his fiancée to be—until moments after the transaction when that eager guy is hit by a car and killed, and Fender’s conscience pays a rare visit.
He retrieves the ring and decides to find the woman his customer intended to marry. That woman turns out to be Ginger Stevens, twenty-something ski instructor, who—despite being full of guilt and self-doubt after the death of her boyfriend—is someone Fender finds he quite enjoys being around. He’s smitten.
Which is all well and good, except that after he meets her, Fender can’t do it. Though it’s right there in his pocket, he can’t tell her about the ring. Instead, he embarks on a long, ridiculous quest to find a way to tell her the truth he knows she deserves. Aided by advice from Pop and the antics of his best friend Sam, Fender tries desperately to juggle his budding romance with the reality he knows could ruin it.
Will he find love or foul it up? Can Ginger move out of the past to embrace what the future has to offer? Meet this unlikely pair in Beck Anderson’s heartfelt and fabulously funny second novel, The Jeweler.
Fender’s story begins with tragedy, although not his own. In an attempt to right a resulting wrong, Fender sets out on a journey to do, according to him, one right thing in his life. This decision leads him to Ginger, a woman who was meandering through her life. But when misfortune strikes, she is left stumbling in the darkness of her functional depression, trying to fumble through her days with as little ripples in her life as possible. However, sometimes, it’s the ripples that make things more pleasurable.
Fender is amusing in his self-doubt. He is unassumingly charming and endearing in his fumbling attempts to do things better—for Ginger. Ginger is realistic in her grief and inspiring in her attempt to move forward—for Fender. As these two maneuver their way through the minefield of life and love, Fender must also grapple with the guilt of the secret he keeps from Ginger. But all isn’t as it seems, as Ginger is hiding a secret of her own; a secret she barely has courage to admit to herself.
In The Jeweler, Anderson delicately weaves two fragile souls together. As her story progresses, you feel frustrated at Fender, while also feeling his frustration. Soon, you also feel as if you are keeping a secret. You sympathize with Ginger, while wanting to shake her awake. While there are many stories out there of loss and love, this one truly takes a unique approach. It’s an emotional rollercoaster that leaves you teary eyes from both grief and laughter.
I give The Jeweler by Beck Anderson 5-stars! The Jeweler is out now, so grab your copy today!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Beck Anderson believes in the power of perfectly imperfect women and in the healing power of love. Her first novel, Fix You, grew out of those beliefs and the time to write afforded by the worst Thanksgiving blizzard she’s ever witnessed in West Yellowstone. Beck balances (clumsily at best) writing novels and screenplays, working full-time as an educator, mothering two pre-teen males, loving one post-40 husband, and making time to walk the foothills of Boise, Idaho, with Stefano DiMera Delfino Anderson, the suavest Chihuahua north of the border.
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