Back Cover: Romance has never been actress Chloe Daschle’s forte—in life or on screen. But everyone knows who to call for a convincing death scene . . . and it might be killing her career.
When Chloe is given a peek at the script for an epic love story, she decides to take her destiny into her own hands and request an audition for the lead female role, Esther Kingsley. The compelling tale, inspired by family lore and a one-page letter from the colonial ancestor of scriptwriter Jesse Gates, just might break her out of this career-crippling rut. Jesse would rather write about romance than live through it after his past relationship ended in disaster. But once on-set together, the chemistry between Jesse and his leading lady is hard to deny.
Centuries earlier, in the heart of the Revolutionary War, Hamilton Lightfoot and Esther Longfellow wrote their saga off the silver screen. Esther’s Loyalist father opposes any relationship with Hamilton, but Esther must face her beloved father’s disapproval and the dangers of war in order to convince Hamilton of their future together. Hamilton has loved Esther for years, and on the eve of battle pens the love letter she’s always wanted—something straight from the heart.
Set in stunning upcountry South Carolina, The Love Letter is a beautifully crafted story of the courage it takes to face down fear and chase after love, even in the darkest of times. And just maybe, all these generations later, love can come home in a way not even Hollywood could imagine.
ABOUT AUTHOR: Rachel Hauck is a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling author.
She is a Christy Award Winner and a double RITA finalist. Her book The Wedding Dress was named Inspirational Novel of the Year by Romantic Times Book Club. She is also the recipient of RT's Career Achievement Award.
A graduate of Ohio State University with a degree in Journalism, and a former sorority girl, Rachel and her husband live in central Florida. She is a huge Buckeyes football fan.
Visit her at www.rachelhauck.com or www.facebook.com/rachelhauck
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS FOR THIS NOVEL
1. Was this book what you expected? If not, what surprised you?
2. What was unique about the setting of the book? How did it enhance or take away from the story?
3. Was there a character in the story you could root for? Rejoice in their victories and/or feel their struggle?
4. Do the characters seem real and believable? Can you relate to their predicaments? To what extent do they remind you of your self or someone you know?
5. Favorite Scenes? Do Tell!
6. Here's a question from the back of the book, "The book asks the question, "What happens to unrequited love?" Even though I asked the question as the author, I'm not sure love is its own entity, drifting through time, looking for a place to rest. Yes I was fascinated by the idea of two people falling in love yet finding themselves separated by war, life, social status, or circumstance beyond their control. What do you think of "unrequited love"?
7. Jesse tried for a long time to make it in Hollywood. When he finally did, he gives it all up on principle. What would you have done? What would you give to stand by a friend?
I'm sorry I'm late in starting this discussion. I have worked extra hours at my Day Job and I haven't been up to feeling myself. I don't know about you but the weather here has been crazy with heavy fog, heavy rain and flooding. I know that the people who live up north have been hit with a tremendous amount of snow.
Praying you all have been safe through the storms. Can you start off your discussion with what your winter weather has looked like. THANKS for your patience with me being late to start this.
I LOVED this book. It was fun and this author brilliantly timed the time/slip part of the story seamlessly. I liked the fact that it took place in modern times Hollywood. Since Rachel Hauck's novel has been made into a movie I know that she got to see the behind the scenes of how things work. Since I have been on a few movie sets it was interesting to get a front row seat into this production.
MY REVIEW BELOW:
I wanted to share my review with you that answeres a few of the questions ABOVE!! Grin!
Outstanding! Rachel Hauck’s best novel so far. This time-slip story has it all from hero’s past and present, getting a behind the scene tour of a movie set and a peek at the creative process of making a film. Then there’s the battles that took place in South Carolina that will rip at your heart. There are characters you can cheer for, cry with and feel not only their agony but their triumphs as well!
It was an engaging read in both time lines right from the start with actress Chole Daschle is trying to break out of being the “Queen of death scenes”. Would Hollywood ever see her as something more? She wants to break their type casting; so when Chole reads a script, she seeks to audition for she is anxious that no female characters die. The movie is Bound by Love. It's written by a new scriptwriter. She wanted the part of Esther Kingsley, a woman facing tough times during the Revolutionary War. She’s torn between being loyal to her father and/or following her heart and be with the man she loves, Hamilton Lightfoot. They learn that, “Bravery is fighting in the midst of your fear, not in absence of it.”
All the leading characters Chloe, Jesse, Esther and Hamilton face some hard truths about their life’s choices, faith, and forgiveness not only for the people they’ve hurt and/or hurt them but for themselves as well. It was refreshing to see that none of these characters were running off to get involved physically and then wonder about all the ramifications of their relationship later. Chloe had done that. Everything she rushed into died like the many roles she played.
I liked both leading lady’s loyalty and their search for true love. Chole and Esther ask themselves the question, what is real love.? What does it look like? Would their soul mate ever be found? Did it really exist?
I liked what Chole says this about marriage, “Marriage is the one place where no one can go but you and your spouse. One man. One woman. In a union that has baffled humanity since the beginning of time. It’s a treasure, something to be guarded with every part of your being…joined by God.”
I liked that they were flawed characters testing the waters of faith, church and their struggle with trusting God and His best plan for their lives. So far as they could see things weren’t adding up to be too great. It was down right horrific in some of the things they experienced. Many discovered that forgiving others was easier then forgiving themselves
I relished hanging out with these characters past and present. I enjoyed all the twists, turns, and surprises I experienced with them on their journey. Don’t rush through this, you’ll want to savor every word. This makes for a great book club pick. The author includes ten discussion questions to help make your book club experience lively! I highly recommend this novel for a great read and for your next book club pick. This is a keeper to be enjoyed over and over again!
Good morning Nora,
The weather has been crazy here as well, temps in the 20s, snow, ice, and then the next day 50-60s, rain. Snow has not been lasting more than a day or two this winter, but the mud sure is lasting. Our little dog goes for a walk starting out white and returning brown. Loved your review and thought I would share mine I wrote for Rachel’s book tour last year.
I enjoy reading duel time line stories, multiple POVs, and Rachel Hauck’s writing, but I toiled with the choppiness of The Love Letter from time to time. A letter written by Hamilton Lightfoot to Ester Longfellow in 1802, but never mailed, brings the two generations together. Jesse Gates, Hamilton’s 6 times great grandson, writes a screenplay for a movie based on the letter which stars Chloe Daschle as Ester. There is much to tell about Chloe and Ester, however, my lips are sealed, as not to give away the ending. You will have to read this stirring story for yourself and trust me you will not be disheartened.
What drew me to this story was the historical side as little is written about the southern states involvement in the War of Independence. Here Rachel did not disappoint with her research and attention to detail. Picking the Cowpens battle a turning point in the American reconquest of South Carolina from the British was genius. I felt the animosity and conflict between Hamilton Lightfoot, Ester Longfellow’s father, Sir Michael Longfellow, and Lieutenant Twimball at each and every meeting, and Ester’s dilemma loving both Hamilton and her father who were on opposite sides of more than just the war.
Rachel Hauck’s stories are always filled with messages of wisdom. One such message in The Love Letter is: “Marriage is the only place where two lovers can exist in a world all their own”. This is such a divine sentiment and one every couple should always remember.
I received a complimentary ARC ebook of The Lost Letter from Thomas Nelson/HarperCollins Christian Publishing via NetGalley as part of the Celebrate Lit book tour. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
Our quotes are very similar and both in the book at different times.
THANKS Adriann, for sharing your review. I liked that you said, "Rachel Hauck’s stories are always filled with messages of wisdom.
One such message in The Love Letter is: “Marriage is the only place where two lovers can exist in a world all their own”. This is such a divine sentiment and one every couple should always remember."
I agree with you. I enjoyed Chloe's journey to find true love and her purpose in live.
I loved this book.
The biggest problem for me was the stranger that kept popping up for Hamilton. This stranger was an angel and I did not think it was very believable. However, the characters' reactions to disappointment was very real and is how many of us handle disappointments.
Can't say that I was very surprised by any of it but still really liked it. I loved the format of going back in history with Hamilton and Esther's story then bringing in Chloe and Jesse's story
LOL!! I kept wondering "Who is this guy?" Funny you should mention that. This book was just plain FUN, FUN, FUN! Yes even if parts were predictable. I like characters I can root for! Chloe was one of those I stood up for an cheered for! I even got a little teary eyed in the end. I know! Grin!
I loved having the story set in the South and with a main character who is a Loyalist. History really does not tell us much from the Loyalist side nor from the Southern side.
One of my favorite characters in the book was Chloe. I just related so well to her. For a Hollywood child, she has a lot of depth.
Chloe was my favorite too!! She did have depth. I think that's why I liked her so much. she wasn't caught up in all the Hollywood drama. She struggled to be her own person and make her own way, not on the coat tales of her father.
Not relying on her parents reputations was one of the reasons why I liked her. She was more believable also because she did not get the Debbie Dough role - so human.
That was huge!
One of my favorite devices that Rachel used is when Chloe and Jesse were telling their stories. Each added a line or two and it kept going back and forth between the two sharing their Loxley/Haden stories.
I did enjoy that too Sharen! It was fun! I had forgotten about that. ! Grin!