Adventure Between the Pages: Playing by Heart

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Description: Lula Bowman has finally achieved her dream: a teaching position and a scholarship to continue her college education in mathematics. But when she receives a shocking telephone call from her sister, Jewel, everything she's worked for begins to crumble. After the sudden death of Jewel's husband, Jewel needs Lula's help. With a heavy heart, Lula returns to her Oklahoma hometown to do right by her sister. But the only teaching job available in Dunn is combination music instructor/basketball coach. Neither subject belongs anywhere near the halls of academia, according to Lula! Lula commits to covering the job for the rest of the school year, determined to do well and prove herself to the town. Reluctantly, she turns to the boys' coach, Chet, to learn the game of basketball. Chet is handsome and single, but Lula has no plans to fall for a local boy. She's returning to college as soon as she gets Jewel back on her feet.  However, the more time she spends in Dunn, the more Lula realizes God is working on her heart--and her future is beginning to look a lot different than she'd expected.

My friend and fellow author, Alicia Willis, has been telling me what a talented writer Mateer is. So, when I was given the opportunity to review one of her books, I was eager to try. Sure enough, I found that she is an excellent story teller.

At first, I thought this book was going to be very typical. Girl in man’s world shows everybody that she is even better than the men in her field. However, this book was far from typical. The twists and turns of this sweet story made me feel very happy.

Lula is a very smart girl who loves math. Mateer made her feel very real and pulled me into her inner struggle. Chet also was very well developed, with his own struggles and heart aches. Their romance was a big part of the story and was very honorable. Together, they kept me reading their story with a happy sigh at the end.

The setting was also so nice and different. High school basketball in during the world war? I don’t think I have even heard of another book like that. I really loved that some of the story was even based on the author’s family history.

This was my first book by Mateer, but it will not be my last. Her style is so sweet and God-honoring. It is the kind of book that leaves you feeling good, as well as causes you to examine your own life and faith.

I highly recommend this book for those who love historical fiction, sweet stories, and unique plots.


I received this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review. I was under no obligation to write a positive review. The opinions in this review are entirely my own.

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