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Love and Other Mistakes

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There’s a fine line between love and hate . . . And for the last seven years, Natalie Groves has hated Jeremy Walters. Natalie Groves was meant for great things. But soon after her fiancé left, Natalie’s father was diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly her grand plans evaporated . . . and God felt very far away.Fast-forward seven years, and an internship presents Natalie a chan There’s a fine line between love and hate . . . And for the last seven years, Natalie Groves has hated Jeremy Walters. Natalie Groves was meant for great things. But soon after her fiancé left, Natalie’s father was diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly her grand plans evaporated . . . and God felt very far away.Fast-forward seven years, and an internship presents Natalie a chance at her destiny—but she needs a job to work around it. And the only offer available is worse than a life sentence. Her ex Jeremy, now back in town, is desperate for help with his infant son and troubled teenage niece, Lili. And Natalie may be just the one to help Jeremy . . . provided they don’t kill each other in the process.When Jeremy and Natalie join forces, sparks fly. But will either of them get burned along the way?


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There’s a fine line between love and hate . . . And for the last seven years, Natalie Groves has hated Jeremy Walters. Natalie Groves was meant for great things. But soon after her fiancé left, Natalie’s father was diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly her grand plans evaporated . . . and God felt very far away.Fast-forward seven years, and an internship presents Natalie a chan There’s a fine line between love and hate . . . And for the last seven years, Natalie Groves has hated Jeremy Walters. Natalie Groves was meant for great things. But soon after her fiancé left, Natalie’s father was diagnosed with cancer. Suddenly her grand plans evaporated . . . and God felt very far away.Fast-forward seven years, and an internship presents Natalie a chance at her destiny—but she needs a job to work around it. And the only offer available is worse than a life sentence. Her ex Jeremy, now back in town, is desperate for help with his infant son and troubled teenage niece, Lili. And Natalie may be just the one to help Jeremy . . . provided they don’t kill each other in the process.When Jeremy and Natalie join forces, sparks fly. But will either of them get burned along the way?

30 review for Love and Other Mistakes

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sherwood Smith

    I'm tagging this as fiction, and spiritual (more about that later). It's billed as a romance, and there is romance in it, but that is overshadowed by so many issues it read more like a problem novel. To discuss it, I have to go into spoiler territory, so if you don't want to be spoiled, don't read on. It's a debut novel, and as such it's impressive. The author certainly packed the story with issues, keeping the pacing boiling along. Central is Natalie, who was dumped by her fiancé weeks before her I'm tagging this as fiction, and spiritual (more about that later). It's billed as a romance, and there is romance in it, but that is overshadowed by so many issues it read more like a problem novel. To discuss it, I have to go into spoiler territory, so if you don't want to be spoiled, don't read on. It's a debut novel, and as such it's impressive. The author certainly packed the story with issues, keeping the pacing boiling along. Central is Natalie, who was dumped by her fiancé weeks before her marriage, which caused her entire life to crash and burn. She is back in her home town after a series of bad jobs that didn't work out--and right when she begins a promising internship for a new ministry, she runs into her ex, Jeremy. Who is also back in town--with a baby. He's a single dad. Natalie ends up being hired by Jeremy to watch his baby, as he, too, is beginning a new job, at the local newspaper. Along the way we meet Natalie's wonderful parents--her dad, her idol, is retiring from his lifelong ministry as he is dying of cancer. Jeremy's brother and sister-in-law, Mike and Steph, are co-pastors at the church that Jeremy left, but apparently he's returned to. We also meet what I think the best character in the book, Mike and Steph's daughter Lili. Lili discovers that her dad is cheating on her mom, and when Mike finds out, he pleads with his daughter not to tell anyone. That's right, the pastor makes his teenage daughter complicit in his cheating. Jessica Kate writes about these flawed characters with sympathy, showing how fragile human beings are--this is no postmodern novel smirking superiorly at the "corrupt fundies" that has become so very common in fiction these days. The problem is, this issue just about overwhelms the rest of the book, as Lili tries to deal, makes friends with an awesome teen whose family is full of their own problems, and finally can't deal and runs away. Meanwhile Nat is dead set against trusting Jeremy, though they are instantly attracted to each other all over again. But then things take another horrible turn when Jeremy's baby turns out to have a severe case of diabetes. That's right, another heart-breaking issue! For the most part, Jessica Kate deals fairly with the characters--including Jeremy's ex, who comes knocking at the door to see her baby after dumping him on Jeremy right after she gave birth. Probably the best sequence was Lili's running away. Her quest for understanding resonates with a sense of verisimilitude, and her faltering faith and how she deals is easily the best treatment of that subject in the book. For the most part, the others seem not to remember they are Christians, except intermittently; when Mike finally tackles his issues, the hard stuff is kept entirely off-stage, which nearly shipwrecks the book. How did his congregation react to his confession? We don't know. How did he justify breaking the Ten Commandments when he's supposed to be a leader of his flock? We don't know, except that he finally got his wife to agree to therapy--which she wouldn't do before because of how it would look. After all this heavy stuff, conflict resolution is pretty much whisked past us, which is anti-eucatastrophe. Meanwhile, Nat's dad is not going to make it. Definitely not light-hearted romance. Natalie and Jeremy get their happy ending, but their resolution is very much overshadowed by the entire Mike issue, and the diabetes and cancer don't help. And yet the author is so good at painting three-dimensional characters with strong appeal. I liked everybody in the book, warts and all, though I don't think this is exactly a fun and light-hearted romance. Given that, I still look forward to seeing where this author goes. Lots of talent there. Copy provided by NetGalley--I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own."

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jultri

    DNF 38%. Christian fiction version of Love Actually. Multiple couples, interconnected lives. Pastor dirtbag cheated on his wife and blamed her reluctance to attend marital counselling. Some things did not add up. NetGalley ARC.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Hallie Szott

    3.5 Jessica Kate’s debut, Love and Other Mistakes, has the look of the type of rom-com I love to read—light, fun, ad very swoon-worthy. However, the story that unfolds between Natalie and Jeremy has a lot more going on than great kisses and witty banter. Seven years ago, Jeremy “Jem” Walters left Natalie Groves only weeks before their wedding. Now, he’s returned to town—with a baby in tow—and needs her help. As they deal with the hurts of the past, complications of the present also intrude—plenty 3.5 Jessica Kate’s debut, Love and Other Mistakes, has the look of the type of rom-com I love to read—light, fun, ad very swoon-worthy. However, the story that unfolds between Natalie and Jeremy has a lot more going on than great kisses and witty banter. Seven years ago, Jeremy “Jem” Walters left Natalie Groves only weeks before their wedding. Now, he’s returned to town—with a baby in tow—and needs her help. As they deal with the hurts of the past, complications of the present also intrude—plenty of Walters family drama and the arrival of his ex, plus Natalie’s dad’s sickness and her new internship and romantic interest from the boss. The hate-to-love is perfect, and I loved the dynamic as Jem and Natalie figured out their feelings for each other. Yet, with the additional storyline of Lili, Jem’s niece, and her disintegrating family, I felt that, at times, the story tried to handle too much. I would have much preferred to simply focus more of the romance and all that’s needed for a second chance. Still, Love and Other Mistakes is an enjoyable read. I am looking forward to reading more from Jessica Kate, especially since A Girl’s Guide to the Outback involves a couple characters I’ve already met. This review is also posted on Hallie Reads. I received a complimentary copy of this book and the opportunity to provide an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review, and all the opinions I have expressed are my own.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    2.5 stars Some parts of this book I really liked, and others fell a bit short for me. What I liked: The soul searching and journey of her faith that Natalie goes through over the course of the novel is believable and touching. I felt for her--feeling stuck in her life, feeling like she needed to prove things to herself, and her up and down feelings for Jem were all meaningful to me as a reader. What I didn't care for: I really thought there were just too many things going on in this book. Natalie a 2.5 stars Some parts of this book I really liked, and others fell a bit short for me. What I liked: The soul searching and journey of her faith that Natalie goes through over the course of the novel is believable and touching. I felt for her--feeling stuck in her life, feeling like she needed to prove things to herself, and her up and down feelings for Jem were all meaningful to me as a reader. What I didn't care for: I really thought there were just too many things going on in this book. Natalie and Jem, Lili's issues/relationship, Mike and Steph's issues, Jem's issues with his dad, Ollie's issues, Jem and Chloe...it was all just too much to cram into one book. And because there were so many plot threads, most of them fell short of being as effective as they could have been, especially Mike and Steph's. I felt like that could have been an entire book unto itself, and I didn't like the way it was resolved and dealt with at all. It is such a deep issue and wasn't handled as thoroughly as it should have been considering the immense hurt and betrayal of the situation in more than one case. Overall, this is a touching book on some fronts with flawed characters who do some learning about themselves and their relationships with God. I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book, all opinions are my own.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Brooke — brooklynnnnereads

    2.5 stars Talk about an example of how you should not judge a book by the cover. This cover is deceptively cute when the contents in actuality were much darker and emotional than I anticipated. That isn't a bad thing but know going into this novel, things are going to get deep and things are going to get sad. One of the biggest things that I feel should be mentioned is that I was under the impression this was mainly a story of romance. Yes, there is romance in the story but that actually is not t 2.5 stars Talk about an example of how you should not judge a book by the cover. This cover is deceptively cute when the contents in actuality were much darker and emotional than I anticipated. That isn't a bad thing but know going into this novel, things are going to get deep and things are going to get sad. One of the biggest things that I feel should be mentioned is that I was under the impression this was mainly a story of romance. Yes, there is romance in the story but that actually is not the main thing to take away from this novel. It has a lot of other issues mainly focused on family but also on adultery, death, illness, grief, and accidental pregnancies (yes....plural). Like I said, a very serious and intense novel. Also, there is a lot of religious and Christianity involvement and inclusion in the story. Again, if that is what you want in a story, then maybe this will be one for you to pick up. However, I feel with the way this novel is being promoted, a lot of people will unknowingly pick this up and then feel blindsided with the abundance of religious messages included. With all of that being said, it was still a good and thought provoking story. I think there was a little too much going on though. What I mean by that is there was issue after issue happening, all incredibly impactful. I feel that the novel may have done better through focusing on one or two issues instead of all that were involved. ***Thank you to the publisher for supplying me with a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review***

  6. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Love and Other Mistakes Jessica Kate Wow, all I can say is, this story blew me away! Keep the tissues close by as you are reading LOVE AND OTHER MISTAKES by Jessica Kate. She will have your emotions all over the place. Once I started reading, it was very hard to stop! The twists and turns made it impossible to put down, as I had to know what was going to happen to Jem and Natalie after so much heartache! Will Natalie ever be able to explain to Jem how hurt she feels? What an awesome story. All of Love and Other Mistakes Jessica Kate Wow, all I can say is, this story blew me away! Keep the tissues close by as you are reading LOVE AND OTHER MISTAKES by Jessica Kate. She will have your emotions all over the place. Once I started reading, it was very hard to stop! The twists and turns made it impossible to put down, as I had to know what was going to happen to Jem and Natalie after so much heartache! Will Natalie ever be able to explain to Jem how hurt she feels? What an awesome story. All of Jessica's characters feel genuine and relatable and put your emotions on one heck of a roller coaster ride. As you are reading, you will find yourself cheering for all of them, praying they can work out their problems and be happy once again. LOVE AND OTHER MISTAKES is all about family, dealing with the past and trying to find your happily ever after. It had me flipping through the pages like a woman on a mission. Jem left Natalie at the alter years ago and when she finds out he is back in town, well, let's just say she isn't very happy. He is now a single father and comes up with this ridiculous idea that Natalie could work for him as his son, Ollie's nanny! What?? Jem tries so hard to be the man Natalie deserves, but he just can't seem to get it quite right. Men!! It was so much fun watching these two dance around each other and their feelings. You will find yourself shaking your head at Jem screaming "open your eyes man! How can you not see what is going on?" At least that's what happened to me! LOVE AND OTHER MISTAKES is a heart tugging but funny story that will hold you hostage until the very last page. Once you start reading, it will be very hard to put down! You also won't be able to stop yourself from laughing at Jem and his manly thoughts! LOVE AND OTHER MISTAKES is without a doubt one of my top funniest books I've read in 2019 so far. I was instantly emotionally invested in all of the characters. My heart broke for Natalie and how she was trying so hard to please everyone except herself. Then there is Jem's niece, Lili, who will break your heart even more. She is dealing with so much and luckily for her she has Nick to guide her through it all. Jessica Kate sure can hook the reader with her writing! I can not wait to read more by this wonderful and heart tugging author. I received a complimentary copy of this book from JustRead Publicity Tours through Netgalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Steph's Romance Book Talk

    3 Stars / 0 Steam Fans Where do I am even begin with this review. I mistakenly requested this book thinking I was getting a romantic comedy but that is not what I got at all! This book is labeled as a Christian fiction romance and although there is a romance contained I do not think I would list it that way at all. This review is based off the fact that I am not a huge fan of Christian romances or "clean" romances unless they are done in a specific way. This book did not hit those points for me 3 Stars / 0 Steam Fans Where do I am even begin with this review. I mistakenly requested this book thinking I was getting a romantic comedy but that is not what I got at all! This book is labeled as a Christian fiction romance and although there is a romance contained I do not think I would list it that way at all. This review is based off the fact that I am not a huge fan of Christian romances or "clean" romances unless they are done in a specific way. This book did not hit those points for me. The only reason I am giving the book three stars is because the author's note brought some understanding to the direction of the story. With that said the main reason I did not connect with the book was because of the overwhelming religious themes, the setting revolving around the church, and that there was not one main relationship to focus on within the storyline. You have three main characters - Natalie, Jeremy, and Lily - that are all connected as well as a bunch of other characters. Natalie and Jeremy have a history from seven years ago that is overly discussed, Jeremy has family issues that are just down right annoying and handled in a frustrating way, and you also have Lily who is connected to Jeremy and Natalie. There are aspects of cheating, alcoholism, runaways, no communication within families, divorce, secrets, and just a bunch of other issues that didn't really get resolved by the end of the story. I think the ideas within the book were good just poorly executed and not my cup of tea. This specific video review will be included in the August 2019 wrap-up. For other video book reviews check out my YouTube Channel: Steph's Romance Book Talk.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Toni Shiloh

    Love and Other Mistakes, is a lot deeper than it's title portrays. There are some issues that are rarely talked about and I enjoyed seeing that in a book. However, there was so much going on in this book (subplots and other characters) that it became a little distracting. I didn't have a chance to fall in love with the characters, because they kept changing on me. I did like the spiritual thread Natalie went through. It had a fresh take on it and I liked her backstory and what made her her. I al Love and Other Mistakes, is a lot deeper than it's title portrays. There are some issues that are rarely talked about and I enjoyed seeing that in a book. However, there was so much going on in this book (subplots and other characters) that it became a little distracting. I didn't have a chance to fall in love with the characters, because they kept changing on me. I did like the spiritual thread Natalie went through. It had a fresh take on it and I liked her backstory and what made her her. I also adored the baby in the book because babies! *I received a complimentary copy from the publisher via NetGalley. My review was not required nor influnced.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Antonella

    Love and Other Mistakes is my first book by this author and my first christian fiction. I really didn't pay attention while requesting this, that it's christian fiction. I didn't even know that it was a thing. I guess you live and learn. But I didn't mind. It read as some of the chick lit I have read. This is a story about two brothers and their families, kids, love interest and complicated relationship with their father. In a small town where one brother is a pastor and another comes back after Love and Other Mistakes is my first book by this author and my first christian fiction. I really didn't pay attention while requesting this, that it's christian fiction. I didn't even know that it was a thing. I guess you live and learn. But I didn't mind. It read as some of the chick lit I have read. This is a story about two brothers and their families, kids, love interest and complicated relationship with their father. In a small town where one brother is a pastor and another comes back after long time being away, we get to go on a journey discovering family secrets and how they affect their families and lives. I found blurb really misleading as this book really isn't about Natalie and her ex boyfriend Jem being back. She is more of a side character or maybe the plethora of characters don't give anyone space to be the protagonist of this story. They all are intertwined. But I did find Lilly, the pastor daughter, the most interesting one in this book. I think her emotional journey is what kept my interest throughout the book, as I really wanted to see how everything will turn out. I also find her the most honest and true to situation written character. Imagine my disappointment when at the end abrupt and poor epilogue doesn't solve any or major problem couple of characters dealt with. I don't need rosy and happy ending but this confusion and unfinished plot line is really something I cannot accept. So some characters do get the ending they deserve as I don't want to give anything away. But other then that I found the overall book lacking some major parts of the story. Somewhere between two and three stars. 2,5 * Thanks to publisher and NetGalley for copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. All opinion are my own.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Bethany Turner

    *3 1/2 Stars* Well...I have to admit, I'm not exactly sure how to review this book. For one thing, I don't know whether to start with the good news or...the less-good news. But I think I'm going to start with the less-good news, because the less-good news is all about perception, marketing, and expectations, while the good news is all about a talented debut author and her nuanced storytelling. And that's what I REALLY want to talk about. But first, the less-good. In Jessica Kate's Love and Other Mi *3 1/2 Stars* Well...I have to admit, I'm not exactly sure how to review this book. For one thing, I don't know whether to start with the good news or...the less-good news. But I think I'm going to start with the less-good news, because the less-good news is all about perception, marketing, and expectations, while the good news is all about a talented debut author and her nuanced storytelling. And that's what I REALLY want to talk about. But first, the less-good. In Jessica Kate's Love and Other Mistakes, we meet Natalie Groves--a heroine who captured my heart and my interest from the very beginning. We also meet her ex-fiance, Jeremy Walters--better known as Jem. Jem left Natalie years prior in heartbreaking fashion, and Natalie has been attempting to pick up the pieces of her life ever since. Jem, meanwhile, has moved on in dramatic fashion--at least that's how it appears at first. The reality, of course, is that Jem's years without Natalie have been comprised of wandering and searching, misfires and struggles. And...fatherhood. Baby Oliver is now part of the package, though Oliver's mother is missing in action. Everything I am about to say is just one reader's opinion, and I have no doubt whatsoever that countless readers could present compelling counterpoint to each of my grievances. But, in my opinion, the synopsis I have just given is a fascinating foundation for a modern-day, relevant Christian romantic comedy. There is plenty of story to tell. Plenty of potential mishaps to ensue. Plenty of wide. open space for romance and comedy--the foundational cornerstones of rom-com--as well as life lessons and enlightening perspective. Oh, sure...you'd want to add a subplot. Maybe two. Engaging supporting characters are a must. My first grievance is that held within these beautifully-written pages are more subplots than I really care to invest in. By pulling me out of Jem and Natalie's central plot in favor of the story of Jem's teenaged niece Lili and her very real, very heartbreaking, VERY well-written drama, as well as that of her parents, Mike and Steph, who are responsible for Lili's heartbreak and angst (More on them in a moment...), not to mention Jem's broken relationship with his father, resentment towards alcohol and the devastating havoc it can wreak, Natalie's attempts to come to terms with her beloved father's impending death, Natalie's search for not only a job but a calling, the chronic illness of a baby... Long story short, I sometimes felt as if I had emotional whiplash. Now, to the author's immense credit, all of these plots and subplots were interconnected in a fashion that was natural and intricately engaging. Jessica Kate is not just telling us a story. She's giving us an inside look at a modern, complicated family's life. And I don't have a problem with that in the least. What I do struggle with, however, is attempting to wrap all of this plot and subplot, intricacy and angst, into a romantic comedy package. Sure, there is romance. And yes, some of Ms. Kate's banter, observations, and situations are truly hilarious. But the disillusionment of romance and the very opposite of comedy actually run more prevalent than either of the two words that make up the romantic comedy sub-genre. Again, my grievance here is not really with the book or the author--only with the expectations laid out with the marketing of the book. My heart simply wasn't prepared for all of the pain and sadness it was about to be subjected to. But let's pretend for a moment that I hadn't been distracted by the design of the cover--in a style so prevalent in romantic comedy novels these days--and I hadn't been prepared to sit down with a humorous story, focused on the central couple and their up-and-down path to love. In that scenario, what would this review consist of? Well, my major grievance would have been with just how bothered I was by Lili's parents, Mike and Steph. Humans are flawed. I get that. And honestly, I was thrilled that Ms. Kate chose to tackle some very difficult, very hush-hush problems which do, in fact, occur within the church and in the lives of those chosen to lead the church. But the extremity of Mike and Steph's handling of their problems--from lies and deception to selfishness and coercion...all the way to what amounted to child neglect and abandonment--was a whole lot to deal with. I kept hoping for some serious redemption there. Not just a moment in which they stopped thinking about themselves for two seconds (which we did eventually get), but a moment in which there was repentance and evidence of consequences, even beyond the pain they inflicted on their daughter. Other than that my alternate reality review, if I had understood what I was getting into, would have consisted of the following: Jessica Kate is truly talented, and without a doubt she is one to watch. Her writing voice is unique, her ideas are new, her approach is fresh, and she is simply a gifted storyteller. She weaves together fascinating intricacies. Her dialogue feels real. She knows how to make chemistry and affection--romantic and otherwise--between characters leap off the page. And do you know what else? I really enjoyed reading this book! I was engaged from the very beginning, and I couldn't wait to see what happened next. There wasn't a single moment of reading this book that I consider a waste of time or waste of emotion. Without a doubt, I will be anxiously awaiting the next book by Ms. Kate. She has a bright future, and I believe this book only begins to scrape the surface of the reading delights she is going to deliver to readers through the years. And all of that good stuff? Well, the fact is that's not just what I would have said in my alternate reality review. It's what I'm happy to say in spite of the misdirected marketing and expectations. And to any readers unsure of whether or not to pick up this book, in light of a "negative" review...do yourself a favor and read it. Now. Go into it prepared for a sometimes-painful, often-funny, deep and moving visit with a flawed group of family and friends who, at the center of it all, believe that love is worth the pain. I received a complimentary copy of this book, courtesy of Thomas Nelson via NetGalley. All opinions expressed are my own.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Brittany

    Love and Other Mistakes was a really good book. I don’t know that I would classify it as romantic comedy, although there were definitely funny moments and plenty of humor thrown in. However, this story deals with many very serious issues. There are a lot of characters and a lot of scenarios going on in this book. I did not have any trouble keeping everything sorted and I don’t know how the author really could have set this up in any different way. Sometimes there are just lots of things going wro Love and Other Mistakes was a really good book. I don’t know that I would classify it as romantic comedy, although there were definitely funny moments and plenty of humor thrown in. However, this story deals with many very serious issues. There are a lot of characters and a lot of scenarios going on in this book. I did not have any trouble keeping everything sorted and I don’t know how the author really could have set this up in any different way. Sometimes there are just lots of things going wrong in people’s lives, and those things overlap and can lead to the type of overwhelming situations found in this novel. I thought the author dealt with hurt and betrayal very clearly in this story. The way things wrapped up for both storylines felt realistic to me. Many things worked out, but not all. There was still hurt. Yet, I really enjoyed the happily-ever-after part of this book. The main characters, Natalie and Jeremy, had much to overcome and their relationship was fraught with problems to work through. It was fun to see how that resolved. I’m looking forward to the next book! I received a complimentary copy of this book. All opinions are my own. You can read this review on my blog: https://brittreadsfiction.wordpress.c...

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lisa (Bookworm Lisa)

    I really enjoyed this story of love, forgiveness, loss, and compassion. The characters are complicated and the author does a great job of describing them, how they are feeling, and moving them forward in a positive way. The main characters are Natalie and Jeremy. They have history. Their story is full of pain and good times. They have a lot to overcome in order for forgiveness to happen. While they are experiencing their own drama, there is a ton of it happening to the people they love. I found I really enjoyed this story of love, forgiveness, loss, and compassion. The characters are complicated and the author does a great job of describing them, how they are feeling, and moving them forward in a positive way. The main characters are Natalie and Jeremy. They have history. Their story is full of pain and good times. They have a lot to overcome in order for forgiveness to happen. While they are experiencing their own drama, there is a ton of it happening to the people they love. I found this story to be believable because life is full of ups and downs. I appreciated how they came back to their faith and trusted God to help see them through. This is the first book that I have read from this author. I will look for more books from her in the future. This book contains infidelity, kissing, and Christian themes. Source: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Sundin

    Love and Other Mistakes is a sparkling story full of humor and banter. Yet this debut novel is so much more than just cute. Jessica Kate explores the pain caused by family secrets, betrayal, and broken dreams, and shows the difficulty of wrestling with them – and the joys of doing that wrestling. Natalie and Jem are characters with depth – and they have amazing chemistry! I thoroughly enjoyed this story, and I recommend it wholeheartedly!

  14. 5 out of 5

    TheEuphoricZat

    Believe sometimes takes courage. This book talks about some serious topics that are usually grazed over in fiction Loss Death Heartbreak Single parenting Reunion ... 6 years ago, natalie and Jem broke off their engagement but he is back in town again with a baby. And he needs a nanny. Natalie decides to become his nanny and soon the love they have for each other rekindled. While lily has to deal with the break up in her family, when she caught her God loving Father cheating on her mother with her Teacher Believe sometimes takes courage. This book talks about some serious topics that are usually grazed over in fiction Loss Death Heartbreak Single parenting Reunion ... 6 years ago, natalie and Jem broke off their engagement but he is back in town again with a baby. And he needs a nanny. Natalie decides to become his nanny and soon the love they have for each other rekindled. While lily has to deal with the break up in her family, when she caught her God loving Father cheating on her mother with her Teacher. This book is a journey that I believe everyone must go on.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Susan Snodgrass

    Natalie Groves was dumped by her fiancé 7 years earlier and her father diagnosed with cancer. God just doesn't care about her. So she thinks. Now Jeremy is back in town with a baby son and Natalie is helping her parents with their finances after the medical bills pile up. She just lost her job and she agrees to nanny Jeremy's baby. What? Lots of issues in this debut novel, and they are handled well by the author. Redemption really works as both Nat and Jem discover and God wasn't so far away aft Natalie Groves was dumped by her fiancé 7 years earlier and her father diagnosed with cancer. God just doesn't care about her. So she thinks. Now Jeremy is back in town with a baby son and Natalie is helping her parents with their finances after the medical bills pile up. She just lost her job and she agrees to nanny Jeremy's baby. What? Lots of issues in this debut novel, and they are handled well by the author. Redemption really works as both Nat and Jem discover and God wasn't so far away after all. *I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers via Net Galley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tressa (Wishful Endings)

    LOVE AND OTHER MISTAKES is one of those inspirational romances that will make readers laugh, cry, swoon, and wish the best of happy endings for these characters. They face so much brokenness, and need each other and their faith to make it through. Definitely recommended to Christian romance or even general romance fans! From the first page I knew this story was going to be a whole lot of fun, but also an emotional read. It definitely kept it up to the very end! Natalie is a little frazzled. She's LOVE AND OTHER MISTAKES is one of those inspirational romances that will make readers laugh, cry, swoon, and wish the best of happy endings for these characters. They face so much brokenness, and need each other and their faith to make it through. Definitely recommended to Christian romance or even general romance fans! From the first page I knew this story was going to be a whole lot of fun, but also an emotional read. It definitely kept it up to the very end! Natalie is a little frazzled. She's been dealing with a lot on top of the heartbreak she still hasn't let go of. Jeremy is so utterly charming. He's a complete flirt, but only with Natalie. He is also dealing with the aftermath of his own upbringing and choices. They both haven't recovered from their broken engagement seven years ago and more challenges just get piled on top, however, they both still love each other. They just have to find their way back, and figure out if they can forgive and trust each other again. I loved these characters! Natalie and Jem were both complex and easy to relate to. Then there were the other characters, particularly Lili who was also going through a lot in this story. The plot moved at a good pace and everything just got more complicated as it went. There were moments I had to choke back tears, others when I couldn't help laughing, and then there was the fabulous chemistry between Natalie and Jem. Definitely some swoon-worthy moments. I also really liked how this author wove the inspirational elements through this story. They felt natural, real, and not in the least bit preachy. My only complaint would be that there is a lot of this story devoted to a secondary plot with Jem's brother and his wife. I would have like a little more closure there, or maybe just more development due to how much time was given to it (or maybe less time given to their perspectives and just sticking with Lili's perspective instead). I also had major issues with how they felt appearances were better than helping their daughter and figuring things out, particularly being pastors. It puts into question how pastors may try to hide things because they could lose their jobs and incomes if they don't practice what they preach, which also rubbed me wrong. It made me wonder how no one, particularly Jem and his dad, could see what was going on - they never really confronted Mike and Steph about things. I also had a slight issue with a pastor dating his possible employee. Just a red flag there. In the end, was it what I wished for? I really enjoyed reading this with few complaints! I stayed up late to finish because I couldn't put it down. This is a story that tugs on the heart and doesn't let go. I'm looking forward to more from this author! Content: Some innuendo, an affair behind closed doors, and some drinking. Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher through Celebrate Lit, which did not require a positive review nor affect my review in any way.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jypsy

    Love and Other Mistakes is not a romantic comedy. Granted, the story has a bit of romance and a bit of comedy, but the overall picture of the story is actually a downer. I found it depressing and too heavy for what it was trying to convey. Life is not a fairytale with happy endings. Life is not fair. These messages are loud and clear from the narrative. Natalie has many personal problems to deal with. Jem has many personal problems to deal with. The supporting characters have big personal proble Love and Other Mistakes is not a romantic comedy. Granted, the story has a bit of romance and a bit of comedy, but the overall picture of the story is actually a downer. I found it depressing and too heavy for what it was trying to convey. Life is not a fairytale with happy endings. Life is not fair. These messages are loud and clear from the narrative. Natalie has many personal problems to deal with. Jem has many personal problems to deal with. The supporting characters have big personal problems. Like, serious stuff-cancer, infidelity, death, sick children, abandonment, etc. I found it just too much crammed into one book. It's like the author wanted to write this big tragedy but gloss over it with slight romance and humor so it's seen as a romcom when it's not even close to that. I wanted to like this book, but I didn't. This was a big miss for me. Thanks to NetGalley for an arc in exchange for an honest review.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Rebekah Gyger

    The cover of this book screams comedic romance, which is a factor in this story though not how I would overall describe it having now read the book. Natalie and Jem are a pair of goofballs who like to pick on each other despite their complicated past and present circumstances. Yet a good portion of the story is devoted to the perspective of Lili, Jem's niece. Lili also has her moments of mischief, but her story line is far less cheery. All of the characters in this book are dealing with a lot of The cover of this book screams comedic romance, which is a factor in this story though not how I would overall describe it having now read the book. Natalie and Jem are a pair of goofballs who like to pick on each other despite their complicated past and present circumstances. Yet a good portion of the story is devoted to the perspective of Lili, Jem's niece. Lili also has her moments of mischief, but her story line is far less cheery. All of the characters in this book are dealing with a lot of baggage and family issues. Even baby Oli has a problem which compounds with those of everyone else, making this story more about family and doing your best no matter what everyone else is doing around you, than it is about Natalie and Jem's relationship. Stating that, so long as this is the story you were expecting, I do think that this is a really good read. Natalie and Jem are an adorable couple, taking care of an adorable baby, and Lili is an amazingly relatable teenager. And the heavy, emotional scenes are balanced well with lighthearted moments that show the brighter side of life. There were a few moments which seemed unrealistic, but those played more into the comedic side of the story, making them easier to roll with. I have provided an honest review after having received a copy of the book through JustRead Tours.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Cara Putman

    This book is a romance with depth. Unlike a typical romance, there are more character perspectives than simply the hero and heroine, and those added a depth to it. This also leads to a host of supporting characters, and not all issues are cleanly resolved. But this novel is a romance rooted in real issues and real growth. I enjoyed every page.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Rachel McMillan

    HAPPY THOUGHTS! more soon!!!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jaime Jo Wright

    I wholeheartedly applaud this novel. It’s funny, romantic, layered and most of all REAL. It’s not a sappy Hallmark movie sandwiched with cute witticisms. It’s legit life paired with snark and a laughable irony that life really isn’t tied up neatly in the end with a bow. The characters were well defined. The story was layered and FINALLY a romance that wasn’t one dimensional. I loved all the other story lines and loved that it also examples flawed humanity in all its desperate need for understand I wholeheartedly applaud this novel. It’s funny, romantic, layered and most of all REAL. It’s not a sappy Hallmark movie sandwiched with cute witticisms. It’s legit life paired with snark and a laughable irony that life really isn’t tied up neatly in the end with a bow. The characters were well defined. The story was layered and FINALLY a romance that wasn’t one dimensional. I loved all the other story lines and loved that it also examples flawed humanity in all its desperate need for understanding. I loved that the characters all made grievous errors. A flawed hero, a defeated heroine, a cheater pastor, a prideful wife, a broken daughter, a lowlife good boy, a gritty cop with pride higher than Mt Everest (and he will fall!), and even a sad teacher who really just messes up all along the way. Thank you, Jessica Kate for writing romantic comedy with realism and a story that is so layered and poignant it’s worth the time to read even if you don’t love romance!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Denise Hershberger

    This book wasn't as inspirational as I thought it would be. I felt like half the characters were Christian trying to live their lives for God and the other half said they were Christian (and even a pastor) but we're not even remotely acting Christ-like not did they seem to show much remorse or reconciliation. I liked Jem - most of the time. He early had made mistakes, but seemed to be trying to make the best of hard situations. I felt like Natalie had no clue what she was doing with her life even This book wasn't as inspirational as I thought it would be. I felt like half the characters were Christian trying to live their lives for God and the other half said they were Christian (and even a pastor) but we're not even remotely acting Christ-like not did they seem to show much remorse or reconciliation. I liked Jem - most of the time. He early had made mistakes, but seemed to be trying to make the best of hard situations. I felt like Natalie had no clue what she was doing with her life even though she thought she did. I was very annoyed with her. Now that I reflect on the book, I just hope that some people reading it realize how much their choices affect the lives of those around them. I received an advanced copy of this book and this is my honest review.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rachel Scott

    Ever since I read the premise for this book, I was eager to get my hands on it! This debut romance features witty banter and relatable characters while showcasing the messy things of life with strokes of humor. First of all, I’m a fan of the love/hate trope because the story begins with a mountain of complications between the two main characters and it’s always interesting to see how things gets untangled. Another element that made the story engaging was the heroine. I found myself rooting for h Ever since I read the premise for this book, I was eager to get my hands on it! This debut romance features witty banter and relatable characters while showcasing the messy things of life with strokes of humor. First of all, I’m a fan of the love/hate trope because the story begins with a mountain of complications between the two main characters and it’s always interesting to see how things gets untangled. Another element that made the story engaging was the heroine. I found myself rooting for her success from the very first page! All in all, this was a solid debut from Jessica Kate, and I’m looking forward to her future stories! I received a copy from the author, all opinions are my own.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Georgia

    I was dubious about reading a Christian romance, but this was really well done and tackled some pretty weighty church issues and life challenges in a wonderfully non-cheesy way. The story dealt with issues of infidelity (that part of the story was a particular gut punch), illness, forgiveness, self-worth, and regular ole insecurities...so relatable. Plus the characters were flawed and not everyone’s story ended in a neat bow. A few criticisms: The author often glossed over large swaths of time ( I was dubious about reading a Christian romance, but this was really well done and tackled some pretty weighty church issues and life challenges in a wonderfully non-cheesy way. The story dealt with issues of infidelity (that part of the story was a particular gut punch), illness, forgiveness, self-worth, and regular ole insecurities...so relatable. Plus the characters were flawed and not everyone’s story ended in a neat bow. A few criticisms: The author often glossed over large swaths of time (weeks) and told rather than showed what was happening. The teenage character fell into a several pitfalls that seems maybe a tech too stereotypical. Also, unless I missed something, all of the characters were white...in a pretty big college town (Charlottesville) where I know for a fact there are Christians who are not white. I will definitely read more from Jessica Kate though I hope she makes her characters more diverse in the future. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Nola

    Natalie was broken-hearted when her fiance Jem broke off their engagement 7 years ago. She has had a series of other disappointments and heartaches since then, including having to quit university after her adored father was stricken with cancer and working a run of dead-end jobs, including the most recent from which she's been made redundant. Now single-dad Jem is back in town with his baby son and needs a nanny. There is no way that Natalie would consider working for someone she still hates, bu Natalie was broken-hearted when her fiance Jem broke off their engagement 7 years ago. She has had a series of other disappointments and heartaches since then, including having to quit university after her adored father was stricken with cancer and working a run of dead-end jobs, including the most recent from which she's been made redundant. Now single-dad Jem is back in town with his baby son and needs a nanny. There is no way that Natalie would consider working for someone she still hates, but it's her only option at the moment. Can they forgive each other and give their relationship a second chance or is this yet another mistake to add to the list? But wait ... there's more. Although Natalie and Jem are the main characters, Jem's 16-year-old niece Lily is also a POV character. Her family is disintegrating around her and she comes to live with Jem until things settle down. There are a lot of other issues that I won't go into due to spoilers. Suffice to say, this is not your standard rom-com. This is Jessica Kate's debut novel and I think she's done a good job with some complicated material. I was expecting a fairly light romance, but there are a lot of heavier issues. The writing style is good and there are a lot of fresh, creative metaphors and similes, often with a bit of sass and quirk. I've never read a novel that described monthly pain as Edward Scissorhands doing the salsa in someone's uterus! However, there were a lot of pop culture references (e.g. singers, actors, brand names) that were lost if you didn't know who/what they were. Some of those will also probably date fairly quickly, but I did like the originality. Through the characters and story development, we see that life is messy. These were not cardboard cutout characters, but real people with flaws. Different aspects of Christian faith are also dealt with, as the characters have to work through various issues such as forgiveness and identity. Although it was great that the story had a deeper level, I felt there were a few too many issues. Natalie and Jem had a lot going on just with their own relationship, Jem's baby, and issues they had with their own parents and why Natalie was pushing herself to win a ministry internship. However, there was another whole story to do with Jem's niece and the problems in her family. The fact that Lily was 16, also pushed that more into YA territory and probably could have been a separate book in itself. However, I liked the interesting take on Jem and Natalie's situation and I was motivated to keep reading to see how it all panned out. If you like a light fluffy romance, this book probably won't be for you. But if you like to see real people grappling with difficult decisions and life choices, this book has a lot to recommend it. Thank you to NetGalley for providing a free pre-release copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Iola

    Natalie Groves is about to give the presentation she hopes will save her job when she gets a phone call. There’s a medical emergency. Her first thought is for her father, who’s got cancer. But when she gets to the scene she finds Jem, her childhood sweetheart and ex-fiance. With a baby. Now unemployed, Natalie unwillingly accepts a job as Olly’s part-time nanny on the condition she can also take an unpaid internship with a new Christian ministry, Wildfire. It’s the opportunity she’s been waiting f Natalie Groves is about to give the presentation she hopes will save her job when she gets a phone call. There’s a medical emergency. Her first thought is for her father, who’s got cancer. But when she gets to the scene she finds Jem, her childhood sweetheart and ex-fiance. With a baby. Now unemployed, Natalie unwillingly accepts a job as Olly’s part-time nanny on the condition she can also take an unpaid internship with a new Christian ministry, Wildfire. It’s the opportunity she’s been waiting for. And the handsome youth pastor in charge has nothing to do with that … Jem has his own issues. He left town after an argument with his father, and he’s still not ready to mend those bridges. And he’s got his niece, sixteen-year-old Lily, who helps Natalie with Olly, and who moves in following an argument with her own father. Love and Other Mistakes is a bit of a genre mash-up. There’s Natalie and Jem’s second-chance romance. There’s the faith element—Natalie’s internship is with a Christian ministry, and Lily’s parents are both in full-time paid ministry. Then there is Lily’s story, which is more Young Adult. The overall tone is humorous, with a definite chick-lit vibe. I found the first quarter packed in a lot of information, and the writing sometimes got in the way of the story. But then I totally got into the story, and finished it in two sittings. Overall, Love and Other Mistakes is a funny yet poignant lesson in broken relationships that’s occasionally frustrating (Steph, I’m talking about you). It’s also a lesson in mending relationships, and in the power of honesty, love, and God to heal what’s broken. Thanks to Thomas Nelson and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Jones

    I had a hard time getting into this book, because it seems like there are so many things going on that it’s a little distracting. However, I kept reading, and I was glad that I did. This book gives light to many different struggles in a very relatable way. Definitely worth a read! *thanks to Netgalley and the published for a complimentary ARC for an honest review*

  28. 5 out of 5

    Fiction Aficionado

    ~4.5 stars~ What a fantastic debut! By the time I got to the end of the first chapter, I was already in love with this author’s voice. It’s the kind of deep point of view that really immerses you in the story, and it reads as naturally and enjoyably as a conversation with your best friend. Best of all, it was obvious from the first chapter that this story would do justice to the complex emotions involved in the love/hate relationship between Natalie and Jeremy. Even so, I was surprised by the dep ~4.5 stars~ What a fantastic debut! By the time I got to the end of the first chapter, I was already in love with this author’s voice. It’s the kind of deep point of view that really immerses you in the story, and it reads as naturally and enjoyably as a conversation with your best friend. Best of all, it was obvious from the first chapter that this story would do justice to the complex emotions involved in the love/hate relationship between Natalie and Jeremy. Even so, I was surprised by the depth and breadth of this story, particularly where Jeremy’s niece Lili was concerned. She finds herself in a really difficult position that only becomes more difficult as the story progresses, and the way her character was written was absolutely spot on—her personality, her emotional tumult, and the way she responded and interacted throughout the story. Fabulous characterisation! And that goes for Jeremy and Natalie, too. This is as much a story of their personal growth as it is their gradual reconciliation—more points in favour of this author! Character growth is so satisfying! And even when Natalie was doing her darnedest to hold on to her anger, she and Jeremy had a chemistry I couldn’t help but enjoy. And I don’t mean romantic chemistry so much as the chemistry between two people who bounce off each other in conversation and in life. Which made those romantic moments that much more enjoyable when they came. So, what else do you need to know about this story? First of all, it’s a novel about imperfect people. And imperfect Christians. And in the case of one secondary character in particular, an imperfect Christian who’s making a right royal mess of other people’s lives (and his/her own) as a result of some selfish choices. This story doesn’t moralise over those choices; it simply allows the consequences speak for themselves. And they spoke loud and clear as far as this secondary character was concerned. Even so, some readers may feel that the story didn’t deal with said secondary character as thoroughly as it could have. Personally, I think that’s simply because that wasn’t the point of this story. This story was about the effect those choices had on the main characters in this story. Secondly, this is a family drama as much as it’s a contemporary romance. At times the subject matter is a little heavy, and just like in real life, things aren’t picture-perfect by the end of the story, but there was a lightness to the author’s writing style that counterbalanced this without undermining its impact, and through it all was the message that God is faithful, even when those around us (or perhaps we, ourselves) let us down. Bottom line? I’m super keen to get my hands on the next book from this author! I received a copy of this novel from the publisher. This has not influenced the content of my review, which is my honest and unbiased opinion.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    Natalie Groves has never recovered from the breakup with her fiance when she was 19. It's been seven years, and she has yet to get her life back on track. When Jem returns to town -- a single dad, no less, with infant son in tow -- and asks her to be his nanny, she can't believe his audacity. Things begin perking up when she has the chance to intern at her dream job. Knowing she needs income and flexible hours if she's going to swing this opportunity, she begrudgingly agrees to nanny Oliver. Any Natalie Groves has never recovered from the breakup with her fiance when she was 19. It's been seven years, and she has yet to get her life back on track. When Jem returns to town -- a single dad, no less, with infant son in tow -- and asks her to be his nanny, she can't believe his audacity. Things begin perking up when she has the chance to intern at her dream job. Knowing she needs income and flexible hours if she's going to swing this opportunity, she begrudgingly agrees to nanny Oliver. Anything to find purpose in her life again. When the story isn't bouncing between Natalie and Jem's point of view, Jem's niece Lili takes center stage. She's sixteen and dealing with the affects of her pastor father's secret affair. Sure she's done something to cause her dad to stop loving their family, Lili grapples with big emotions and sometimes experiments with substances in order to cope with the pressure eating her up inside. While I thought Jessica Kate's writing style was strong, I feel that this book missed the mark. It's not funny enough to be considered a comedy. Marital unfaithfulness, pregnancy outside of marriage, teenage drinking, childhood diabetes, cancer, the impending death of a parent, and family dysfunction across multiple generations do not a lot of laughs make. There is mention of cursing and one direct curse word hurled from one angry character to another. That's a lot of serious content. My other objection to the story was that Natalie was completely unbelievable as someone wanting to go into ministry. Though she shows great care to Lili, there was literally nothing else that made me think she would be a good youth worker. Lili has more church involvement mentioned than Natalie does. And while she's supposedly under great financial strain because of helping her parents with their medical bills, she was only working one low-paying job before that company went under, which should have left her plenty of time for volunteering, if youth ministry was indeed her passion. Motives are questionable all the way around. I still don't know why Jem moved back to town. The infidelity was a plot point that the author seemed unsure how to handle directly so it pops up whenever she needed it to move emotions along, and simmers quietly, never fully resolved, otherwise. I've enjoyed Jessica Kate on her podcasts, and hope her future releases focus on her writing strengths and quirky characters. I received my copy of the book from JustRead Tours. All opinions in this review are my own. This review originated at http://reviewsbyerin.dreamwidth.org

  30. 5 out of 5

    Phyllis

    Great debut novel I have been reading about Love and Other Mistakes on social media for a couple of months now and was looking forward to reading it. I had a mental image of it being lighthearted, humorous, Chick Lit set in Australia - after all, the author is from there. . . My first surprise was that the story doesn't take place in Australia. It is set in Virginia! However, Natalie's parents are from Australia, as is the dynamic youth leader, Sam, she is hoping to intern for. This wasn't a disap Great debut novel I have been reading about Love and Other Mistakes on social media for a couple of months now and was looking forward to reading it. I had a mental image of it being lighthearted, humorous, Chick Lit set in Australia - after all, the author is from there. . . My first surprise was that the story doesn't take place in Australia. It is set in Virginia! However, Natalie's parents are from Australia, as is the dynamic youth leader, Sam, she is hoping to intern for. This wasn't a disappointment, merely a surprise. The tension between Natalie and Jem over his actions seven years earlier was intense. Natalie was still so hurt, especially when he showed up with a baby! She had so many trials and it seemed like she wouldn't ever get a break. While I empathized with her, she was a little over-the-top unkind to him. Her need to learn to forgive him was very evident. Jem was a gem. Really! He had an overpowering love for his son, Ollie, and was so cute when he played with him. Yet he was also clueless. My favorite character was Lili's friend, Nick. This teenage boy thrived despite difficult circumstances and his love for his family was amazing. He demonstrated selfless love and was quite loyal. The overall tone of the story was quite a bit more serious than I expected. Although humorous things were happening in parts and some clever lines made me smile, the problems the characters were dealing with were quite serious. Natalie's dad was in remission from cancer. Jeremy's niece, Lili, discovered a secret that ripped her world apart and drove her to do things she would have previously considered unthinkable. Jem and his dad had major issues with each other. And these are just a few of the situations. Readers who enjoy reading about characters dealing with real-life type situations and learning to overcome will want to give this debut novel a go. Read my full review at Among the Reads I was given a copy of this book. I was not required to give a favorable review nor was any money received for this review. All comments and opinions are my own.

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