Monday, March 30, 2020

Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese

About the Book
Lauren Bailey may be a romantic at heart, but after a decade of matchmaking schemes gone wrong, there's only one match she's committed to now--the one that will make her a mother. Lauren is a dedicated first-grade teacher in Idaho, and her love for children has led her to the path of international adoption. To satisfy her adoption agency's requirements, she gladly agreed to remain single for the foreseeable future; however, just as her long wait comes to an end, Lauren is blindsided by a complication she never saw coming: Joshua Avery.
Joshua may be a substitute teacher by day, but Lauren finds his passion for creating educational technology as fascinating as his antics in the classroom. Though she does her best to downplay the undeniable connection between them, his relentless pursuit of her heart puts her commitment to stay unattached to the test and causes her once-firm conviction to waver.
With an impossible decision looming, Lauren might very well find herself choosing between the two deepest desires of her heart . . . even if saying yes to one means letting go of the other.

My Thoughts
This book was everything. Brace yourselves because this will probably be a long rambling gushy review and I make no apologies about that!
I finally read my first Nicole Deese book a little over a year ago and fell in love. I promptly got my hands on all of her other books and basically binge read them loving each and every one. But this one tops them all I think, her best work yet! The author’s heart shined through every page and gifted us such an authentically real story that captured my heart from start to finish! I could feel every emotion, every battle to make the right choice, every hard moment, and every happy one. It was all so real and several times I had to set the book down just to catch my breath because I was feeling everything with the characters.
I understood Lauren and her motivations so well and I was right there with her as she wrestled with the hard decisions, not knowing what was good and what was best. I loved her heart for children, a heart that I share, and the selfless way she gave of herself day in and day out to make a difference in the lives of children. Her courage to take the hard steps God was calling her to was inspiring and I loved how she trusted Him.
And now, Joshua Avery. It’s a miracle I made it this far without mentioning him because let’s be honest he is one of the most amazing heroes I’ve ever met in the fiction world. I may or may not have contemplated figuring out a way to make him a real person so I could have him all to myself-lol! But I will have to content myself with just reading about him in the fictional world. From the moment he showed up on the page doing a dinosaur impression for his students I think I fell in love and then he just kept being amazing over and over again! From the way he was with kids, to the gentle way he befriended Lauren never pushing beyond the boundaries she set but always being there, to his interactions with his family, to his adorable obsession with dinosaurs. It all came together in an endearingly wonderful hero and he is definitely book boyfriend material! His name was even perfect and completely matched his personality!
I loved the easy way Joshua and Lauren connected. From their very first meeting you could see the spark and their friendship that blossomed to more was just perfectly sweet!
I also really liked the spotlight on adoption in this book, especially knowing it came from the author’s own experience. Every part of the journey was authentically written from the hard to the good to the in between!
Basically this book was an impeccable work of art that I won’t soon forget and can confidently recommend to everyone! It’s going to be on my favorites list and you need to get yourself a copy so that it can be on yours too!

Meet the Author
Nicole Deese is a Carol Award winner and a RITA and INSPY Award finalist. When she's not working on her next contemporary romance, she can usually be found reading one by a window overlooking the inspiring beauty of the Pacific Northwest. She lives in small-town Idaho with her happily-ever-after hubby, two rambunctious sons, and princess daughter with the heart of a warrior. Find her online at

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own. 


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