"Do I have a child?" Julia DeSmit knew she would face the question eventually, but she didn't expect it now. At twenty-four, she is finally content with the way her life has unfolded. A single mother to her son and young brother, she works at the local grocery store while chipping away at a two-year degree. All her free time is spent with her unorthodox family-her boys, her grandmother, and her boyfriend of five years. It's not perfect, but Julia is happier than ever. So when she receives the cryptic e-mail from her son's father, Julia's world is turned upside down.
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Customer Reviews for Beneath the Night Tree - eBook
Beneath the Night Tree was highly emotional, funny and poignant story of a single mother. If you know a teen who has had a child out of wedlock then you will sympathize with Julia DeSmit as she travels the road as a single parent. You will be gripped to your seat as her life is upset by the reappearance of her child's dead beat dad.
Each of the characters in Beneath the Night Tree endeared themselves to me, all except one. I loved the mother-love Julia had for her two "boys". The strength of Julia's character is amazing with all the events she had to overcome. I loved the relationship she shared with her grandmother. She was a devoted granddaughter.
Julia was fortunate enough to finally find love with a man who not only accepted and loved her, but loved her two "boys" as his very own. I think it takes a special individual to welcome a child that is not their own into their hearts and to love that child as if he was his flesh and blood. Not everyone can do it and I admire those who can and do. Since I have a tender spot for teen moms, I was in tears during many parts of this book as Julia went through her soul searching adventure.
Two of my younger sisters were teen mothers, but only one of them stayed with the father of her children. The other is blessed to have found a man who is a true father to my nephew, who is going on 17 this year. His "dad" has been a father to him since he was at least 2 years old.
I highly recommend Beneath the Night Tree. It is an endearing story of one woman's ability to overcome the past and move on with the future. I have already begun to read it over again and that is not something I do very often!
Please note: I did receive a copy of this book in exchange for a review, however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
don’t know why I waited so long to read this book. It was such a good story! Beneath The Night Tree is actually the third book in this series. I have not had the pleasure of reading the first two books. This book is a stand alone book though and gave quite a bit of back story to make it easy to follow.
Julia is a single mom raising her 5 year old son, her 10 year old half brother and living with her grandma. Julia has been seriously dating Michael for sometime now and hoping Michael proposes marriage soon! She loves Michael and wants to start a life with him.
Then one day she receives an email from her son’s father, Parker. Completely out of the blue. Julia’s world is changed in ways she does not expect. Her faith is tested. Is marriage to Michael really want she wants? Has Parker changed?
This is a very touching story. Julia must make some hard choices and really look at her life, her faith and what matters the most!
disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
This third book in a manifest of writings by Nicole Baart deals again with the idea of being able to start over in life. The beginning of the novel I found quite dry reading, and had to really force myself to keep track of the main characters and piece the theme together as I progressed. Grandma Nellie, as one would surmise, is someone we would all do well to have in our lives: full of sage, patience, dry humor, yet also quirky in her mannerisms. After persistent toward the middle of the book, the main character, Julia DeSmit does seem to have the usual dilemma of choosing between her carefree and organized love of life or accept the past/present realities of life’s offerings and come down to a verity of day to day present pain and truth. The reader watches the characters grow and face a milieu of faith building aspects that lead to and enter into a surprise yet comfortable conclusion for the ending. The reader is also engaged and delighted with the meaning and subtleties of the title of the book.
This was a book I reviewed for Tyndale House Publishers.
In Beneath The Night Tree, Nicole Baart has produced a beautifully written book. I became immersed in the words, something not often found in today’s novels. I envy the talent that can produce prose that sings like verse. Did I say I liked the book? Maybe you can guess I did.
Baart tells the story of twenty-five year old, single mother, Julie DeSmit. Julie is young but has the burdens of a much older woman. She is raising her 5 year old son, Daniel and her 10 year old brother Simon who was abandoned by their mother. Add to this, she is caring for her grandmother, working full-time, and attending the local college. Sometimes she is overwhelmed, but knows that God and her long time boyfriend, Michael are standing with her. Enter Daniel’s father, Parker, who Julie has not seen since telling him of her pregnancy. A complicated life becomes messy.
Beneath The Night Tree is very real. Told from a first person perspective, Julie runs the emotional gamut — joy, fear, resentment, denial. And like a lot of us, she blocks out God’s words and plans for her life — plans that are often inconvenient or unwelcome. But God is ever faithful, pursuing Julie, even as she continues to run. There is something wonderful about a book that portrays God’s love and care without a sermon. It’s like a life lived in such close step with God, that you can’t help but recognize His presence.
Beneath The Night Tree is the third book that traces the life of Julie DeSmit. I have not read the first two and wasn’t lost at all, but I feel I have missed out on knowing the characters — their loves, fears, victories, and pain. So before you pick this one up, get the other two.
(I received this book from Tyndale House Publishers).
Beneath the Night Tree is the conclusion to After the Leaves Fall and Summer Snow. Julia DeSmit whose story started back in After the Leaves Fall as a college student when she found herself pregnant with her TA from college. Summer Snow carries her story onward with the birth of her child. Now in Beneath the Tree she finds herself a few years later and with a long term boyfriend. Then the expected arrives....her son's father whose first question is "Do I Have a Child?"
While I enjoyed the overall story line of the book, I did feel that it lacked the depth that it deserved. The plot is nothing new and used a lot and this book did not bring any new thought into the basic story line. The biggest reason I picked it up was to finish Julia's story and to hope that they author had grown deeper in her writing, but was sad to find out that it read just like the other ones.
Julia's story continues in the third book. "Beneath the Night Tree," in Nicole Baart's Threads of Change series. The life that Julia has made for herself is rocked upside down when she receives an e-mail from her son's father asking, "Do I have a son?" Julia lives with her grandmother, son and younger brother and is content with her life. Julia is also working on a college degree and is soon to be engaged to her boyfriend of five years, her boyfriend who is the man of her dreams. He is the man of her dreams, but is Julia really willing to make him a permanent part of her life and world and how does he change the family unit that is close-knit and means so much to her? The sudden contact from her son's father shakes her world as it will impact completely where her life will go from here and how it will forever be changed. This book is well-written and is easy to follow. The conversations are realistic and the descriptions are very vivid that the reader is transported to Julia's world. The reader will experience Julia's emotions as she deals with various obstacles and joys in her life.
*Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.
With a fresh voice in Christian fiction, Nicole Baart captivates the hearts of people worldwide with her poignant and personable style, unfolding a glorious triumph of transformation in "Beneath the Night Tree" as she vividly portrays an imaginative story of discovery in a passionate journey of becoming. Julia DeSmit discovers the true meaning of her life when she confronts the unforgiving past to reconcile it with her "come-to-terms-with-it" present and assimilate it into a bright and hopeful future. A series of unresolved relationships are skillfully addressed and the deft interplay of thought coupled with action and dialogue is truly memorable as Julia wonders if God really has a part to play in her young life. This is a beautiful story of redemption, worth its weight in gold. Julia's shining faith and ultimate dependence on God is clearly outlined as the foundation for a brilliant narrative in which God's grace reigns in abundance and Julia finds her true self and God's blessings in the midst of a sea of uncertainty.
Heartwarming....inspirational....what a page turner!~
Julia is a young single mother juggling a job, school, a long distance relationship with the man she hopes to marry, and raising her son and younger brother with her grandmother's aid. When her son's birth father contacts her after five years, she agrees to allow him to meet their child. With that decision, Julia's world is turned upside down and nothing will ever be the same. Will all Julia's carefully laid plans be realized? Can she ever forgive Parker for his desertion at her time of need? Is there a chance that Julia and Simon can get over their mother's abandonment? What is a real family anyway? These are just a few questions that are answered in Beneath the Night Tree. I hesitate to elaborate any further because it is a story that just must be read.
Like many other reviewers, I was surprised to learn that Beneath the Night Tree is part of a series because it stands alone so well. With themes pertaining to God, forgiveness, prayer and family it is a must read for Christian fiction lovers.
Beneath the Night Tree is a fantastic read that will entertain as well as strengthen your faith as her characters remind you of theirs. But, for those that aren't interested in this aspect, it is still a fascinating read that adds layers to its characters without being "preachy."
Nicole Baart's writing is a joy. Even though the story constantly beckoned me to turn the pages quickly, I found myself rereading paragraphs in order to savor her lyrical prose. I will certainly look for her previous books, After the Leaves Fall, Summer Snow and A Moment Between, and I look forward to her next offering.
Tyndale House Publishers provided a free copy of this book for my review.
Baart’s gifted command of language ascends from the page once again as she weaves the continuation of Julia DeSmit’s story. Julia, a single mother who fulfills a motherly role for her younger brother as well, prepares to share her life with one man when an unexpected email throws her vision for her future off course. Julia finds herself on the brink of marriage, but unexpectedly her son’s father slips back into the picture complicating all she’s known about love, forgiveness and trust. The medley of characters, Julia’s grandmother, the two boys and the men competing for Julia’s attention, add to the fast-paced plot of Beneath the Night Tree.
Even though I didn’t read the prior two books in the series, I found Beneath the Night Tree entirely enjoyable. It works well as a stand-alone novel. I found it difficult to put down.
Whenever I read of Baart’s books I’m immediately reeled in by her compelling, lyrical writing. With lines like the following what’s not to love?
“I could feel the words like water on my tongue, liquid and heavy with all the emotion that sprang from the well of my doubt.”
“He still wore loss like a chain around his neck.”
“A string of unexpected thoughts wound themselves around my heart, binding my chest until it ached to breathe.”
Baart is an adept author, skilled at beautifully balancing plot with prose.
* Tyndale provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for this honest review
Single parent Julia DeSmit is defined by the roles she fills: mother, granddaughter, sister, student, worker…. Mothering her five-year-old son and her eleven-year-old brother is the great joy of her life, but also a huge burden. Although she shares the task with her aging grandmother, Julia still feels the weight of her responsibilities. Her long time boyfriend, Michael, seems to hold the promise for a better life – security, love, shared responsibilities – but while he is in school miles away those promises remain elusive. The biggest problem that Julia faces, though, is how to maintain the closeness and love she feels with her small, unusual family once Michael becomes a permanent part of her life. Will his love hold the key to the normal life she hopes awaits her? Then without warning Julia is contacted by the last person she ever expected to hear from again – the father of her five-year-old son. With his single question - “Do I have a child?” - Julia’s well-ordered life is gone. What takes its place is the answer to the prayer that she didn't hope to pray - a prayer answered beneath the night tree.
Nicole Baart’s writing is a joy. Even though the story constantly beckoned me to turn the pages quickly, I found myself rereading paragraphs in order to savor her lyrical prose. I will certainly look for her previous books, After the Leaves Fall, Summer Snow and A Moment Between, and I look forward to her next offering.
Tyndale House Publishers provided a free copy of this book for my review.
A very interesting book easy to read as a stand alone or as part of the series. The author appears to look right into the mind of a single mother living with her grandmother ~ all the conflicting responsibilities and yet the joys as well. I liked the way the author portrayed the conflict within Julia as she starts to allow her ex-boyfriend into his son's life but at the same time developing a relationship with her fiance. Loved the wedding dress shopping trip but was sad by the result. I was very impressed with Julia's interaction and understanding of how hurt her 10 year old brother was by the fact that his mother was not returning. It would be very difficult to be the sister and the mother at the same time. The author has a gift for description and I found myself seeing the farm and the house as Julia saw it. The night tree was delightful and a great idea. I was impressed with the author's take on the single life of a young Christian woman in today's world who is supported and buoyed up by the older faith of a strong grandmother.
Review : Beneath the Night Tree - Threads of Change Series Book #3 -Nicole Baart - January 2011
Family life for Julia DeSmitt is all over the place, she is only 24yrs old yet reading the book "Beneath the Night Tree" she sounded so much older as when Julia was 18 years old she fell pregnant with her son Daniel, then several years later Julia's mother Janice turned up along with Julia's half-brother in tow , only too disappear into the yonder once again, this time leaving Julia to raise her half-brother also. Life however seems to be looking up for Julia as her son Daniel starts kindergarten , Simon- now 10years old is doing well in school and seems to be headed towards pursuing a science career and Michael has just proposed to Julia and they are engaged and due to have a June Wedding. Unfortunately though , life for Julia is about to get harder as Daniel's father Parker has returned to get to know his son and we all know what happens when an old flame appears. Can Julia decide which is better for her and the boys or will she end up choosing the wrong guy and making the worst mistake of her life ? When tragedy hits , Julia's eyes are soon awaken as she starts to discover that maybe happiness is different than being loved and it doesn't necessarily mean the same thing. A novel that follows in tradition to Rowan Coleman's The Accidental Family and Danielle Steel's Family Ties. This novel is a great read for all those who loved movies like No Reservations , Raising Helen and Life as we Knew It.
Being a friend to several Christian single moms, this one was close to my heart. It helped me see more of what they have to deal with especially in terms of relationships and keeping it all together.
This was a great read and I found myself wanting to continue reading it, even after I chose a stopping point. I got wrapped up in Julia's love for her son, brother and grandmother. I loved how her grandmother was such a major influence in Julia's life.
I realized after I started reading that it was part of a series, but you could read this by itself as well. I hope you get a chance to pick it up and read it.
Tyndale House Publishers has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.
What a refreshing story found in Beneath the Night Tree by Niclole Baart. It is not only a 'boy meets girl' story, but poses the question about what makes a family.
Julia, in her early 20's, is a single mom to her son and a substitute mom for her younger brother. They all live with her grandmother who is the wise, spiritual leader of the family. As Julia learns and lives the difficulties of single parenting, she dreams of marrying her boyfriend, Michael, a med school student.
One click of her email opens up the world of the unknown. Her son's father, Parker, has contacted her, and after learning of his child, desires to meet him and be a part of his life - if Julia allows. As she wrestles with this, she agrees to the meeting.
How is she to relate to Parker? How will his intrusion into her life affect her future with Michael? And why, after 5 years of dating, doesn't Michael try to bond with her boys, yet Parker becomes the male role model their young lives?
And in the end, what does constitute a family?
I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading her other books After the Leaves Fall and Summer Snow. My rating: 5 out of 5 stars
I received this complimentary copy from review Tyndale House Publishers to review as part of their blogging for books program.
I really liked "Beneath the Night Tree" by Nicole Baart. It took me a couple chapters to get into the story line... but then I was hooked!
Julia DeSmit has an unconventional family. Pregnant her freshman year of college, she returns home to her paternal grandmother. Her brother, younger by 14 years, is also living there. Five years later, they run into some problems that threaten to tear their small family apart. But, Julia learns that she needs to trust in God, that He holds her life in the palm of His hand, and that He cares for her.
Julia's insights can be beneficial to many of us. We often let life get in the way of our relationship with Him. Many times, we call on His name when we need something, but then let Him fall by the wayside when things are going ok for us. Julia learns that she can't always rely on those around her to hold her up. Life happens. It does get in the way. And sometimes those that we are leaning on end up needing to lean on us. But God is always there. And in our weakness, He is strong.
Everything seems to be coming together in Julia's life. She enjoys her job, likes her college courses, is in love with a wonderful man, and is learning how to be a good mom to her son and her younger brother. When she receives an email from her son's father, her entire world is tilted upside-down. One thing after the other continues to upset the perfect life Julia has always dreamed of and thought she finally had in her reach.
Beneath the Night Tree by Nicole Baart was surprisingly refreshing as far as Christian fiction goes. Much more than just a simple romance, readers will feel the depth of emotion of Julia and her "dysfunctional" but well-loved family. Themes of trust and hope were prevalent throughout. I especially loved the relationship between Julia and her grandmother. I enjoyed the style of writing as well, and Nicole Baart has earned a spot on my list of new favorite authors.
This is the third book in a series about Julia. However, it also stands alone. I highly recommend this novel and will be reading others by Nicole Baart in the (hopefully near) future.
I received a free copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for my fair and honest review.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Julia immediately worked her way into my heart, as did her son (Daniel), her brother (Simon), and her grandmother. Life has held plenty of heartache for the entire family, and just when Julia's "happily ever after" seems to be nearing, her life is upended once more when Daniel's father reappears and seeks a relationship with his son. Julia is determined that Parker's presence will not impact her personally as she juggles the needs of her patchwork family. What will she discover about herself and about life <i>Beneath the Night Tree?</i>
This was a great book. The characters are well developed and like able. I connected immediately with the main character, Julia. Beneath the night Tree was a very enjoyable read. It is the third book in a series. I would definitely recommend reading After the Leaves Fall and Summer Snow first if you haven't already.