How far will a girl go to win back a guy she can’t stand? This funny, sweet, and romantic story proves that opposites do attract—and that God has a sense of humor.
A Girl's Guide to the Outback By Jessica Kate
Christian Contemporary Romance
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 368 Pages
January 28th 2020 by Thomas Nelson
Samuel Payton is a passionate youth pastor in Virginia, but below the surface, he’s still recovering from the blow of a failed business and insecurities he can’t shake. His coworker, start-up expert Kimberly Foster, is brilliant, fearless, and capable, but years of personal rejection have left her defensive and longing for a family. Two people have never been more at odds—or more attracted to one another. And every day at work, the sparks sure do fly.
When Kimberly’s ambitious plans for Sam’s ministry butt up against his risk-averse nature, Sam decides that obligations to family trump his work for the church. He quits the ministry and heads home to Australia to help his sister, Jules, save her struggling farm. As Kimberly’s grand plans flounder, she is forced to face the truth: that no one can replace Sam. Together they strike up a deal: If Kimberly comes to work on Jules’s dairy farm and lends her business brains to their endeavor, then maybe—just maybe—Sam will reconsider his future with the church.
As Kimberly tries her hand at Australian farm life, she learns more about herself than she could’ve ever expected. Meanwhile Sam is forced to re-evaluate this spunky woman he thought he already knew. As foes slowly morph into friends, they wonder if they might be something even more. But when disaster strikes the farm, will Sam find it within himself to take a risk that could lead to love? And will Kimberly trust God with her future?
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We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops you'll find snippets, as well as the link to each full post, below:
Heidi Reads... - Excerpt
Sam grinned at her and winked.
She stopped. No way. This was weird.
“Oh, come on.” He leaned out the door, grasped her forearm, and pulled her in. With the door shut, the three of them sat shoulder to shoulder . . . thigh to thigh. Kimberly rolled down her window and tried not to think about how, even on a day so hot she felt like a roast duck, the sensation of Sam’s warmth against her side was exquisite.
Jules fired up the engine, and Sam shifted the vehicle into first. “Okay, Jules, take us on a tour. Pretend we’ve never seen the farm before. Take us to all your favorite spots and tell Kim about them.”
My Devotional Thoughts - Spotlight
Uplifting Reads - Review
"I like watching Sam and Kimberly going back and forth, continuing to spar but then learning to appreciate each other, becoming friends, and developing a slow burn of a relationship. Secondary in this story is the relationship between Jules and her ex-boyfriend Mick. All four of them have so much to work through, and together it seems more possible.
And I especially loved having the Australian setting for this one for something a little different in my reading."
Hearts & Scribbles - Excerpt
“Mick, can I ask you something?”
He swiveled to look up at her. “My response to that question has never stopped you before.”
“What’s your girlfriend’s name?”
He dropped his gaze and grimaced.
She clenched her teeth. She’d been an idiot. There was no girlfriend. And that joyful unicorn currently shooting rainbows around her brain could shut up, because any soft thoughts toward Mick were unwelcome here.
Rockin' Book Reviews - Review
"The characters are very endearing and the dedication to family and God, inspiring. There is so much of real life challenges portrayed, the whole story felt real. . . . This is a great book for older Young Adults to read, as it is for Adults."
Wishful Endings - Excerpt
Ahead of her, Sam walked toward the yard gate, oblivious to the jealousy that oozed through her veins. Between Butch, Jules, and Mrs. Payton—due home in a couple weeks for Christmas—Sam had a real family. A real family with a real home.
A home now under more threat than they realized.
In addition to getting her Wildfire work done, Kimberly had spent late-night hours since she’d arrived scouring the six months’ worth of financial documents Jules had given her, looking for a way to free up the cash they needed.
Red Headed Book Lady - Review
"I love the story and even got a few laughs out of it as well. . . . I finished this book all in one day. It was so good that I couldn't put it down. Plus, it made my cold afternoon go by faster. I love a good story like that.
I highly recommend."
Becky on Books - Review
"A Girl’s Guide to the Outback is a cute, sweet, and funny read. . . . Ms Kate does do a good job of showing how paralyzing their fears are, though, and allows them to work through them, giving us a very sweet HEA in the end."
ACME Teen Books - Kids, YA, & NA Too! - Review
"What great spunky and sassy characters! They were magnetic and completely drew me into th story. I loved that there was not only the primary romantic couple but a secondary one as well! . . . The accents were cheery and adorable, reading about the cattle and sheep 'stations' (ranches to all you Americans) goings-on and just living day to day life in the sunny Outback 'Down Under'.
All in all, a fun and romantically recommendable book!"
Christy's Cozy Corners - Review
"A Girl’s Guide to the Outback is a hilarious, inspirational rom com, and you’re going to love it! . . . I’m not going to spoil this completely adorable book for you because I know you will love it, and I want you to discover all of the swoon-worthy, heart-wrenching, heartwarming, and inspiring moments yourselves. Not only are the main characters well-developed, but the supporting characters also are. . . . A Girl’s Guide to the Outback is a Christian romance book, and I found moments of deep wisdom within its pages."
Cover Lover Book Review - Review
"One thing I love about Rom-coms is they are fun and light. That's one of the things that sometimes bothers me too. But The Girl's Guide to the Outback doesn't only include lightness and humor, it also contains a meaningful vein of faith, trust, dealing with fear, and following God's path for our life. . . . This slow-burn romance is a mixture of sparring fun and uplifting change and put me through many emotions. I was most pleased with the thread of inspiration it instills."
Jorie Loves A Story - Review
". . . it had moments which made me smile . . . . I found a compelling story about seeking out the personal truths in all our journeys and owning those truths even if it means making radical changes in our lives."
Splashes of Joy - Review
"I really enjoyed this interesting story from author Jessica Kate. . . . The cast of mixed characters give a lot of flavor to the story. There are many times you will find yourself laughing, and there are some sad moments a[s] well. The Christian lifestyle was weaved throughout the story in a somewhat subtle way. And it had a sweet ending. . . . If you are looking for a humorous, sweet yet crazy read, this is one you will love."
Peaceful Pastime - Review
"A Girl's Guide to the Outback penned by Jessica Kate is such a delightful read. Parts are filled with humor but there are serious undertones which the author blended perfectly. . . . I became involved and invested in this novel because the story is fascinating, moves at a great pace and I loved the setting. I like that this novel is suitable for all ages which is why I highly recommend it."
Paper, Ink, & Lizard - Review
"Jessica Kate imbues the story with wit and humor all the way, adding an element of pure fun. But that doesn’t mean things don’t get heavy, as emotions spike and relationships go sideways. And even though things don’t work out the way they were expected to, the end of the story is satisfying enough to make any reader melt in her seat.
"A Girl's Guide to the Outback is a humorous story filled with life, laughter, and a whole lot of cows, perfect for those who love clean romance with a little bit of comedy."
Getting Your Read On - Review
"What a cute book! I loved the setting and I loved getting to know the characters in this book. They had depth and personality. This author is great at creating scenes that I can easily visualize in my mind and I love how it all played out so vividly."
Remembrancy - Review
"I enjoyed Jessica Kate’s debut novel, but she’s outdone herself in The Girl’s Guide to the Outback. Kate’s sophomore release felt much more rom-com to me than her first book, yet there was still some wonderful depth to the story amidst the humor. . . . I adored that there are two romances in this book (Jules and Mitch are the second couple) and the peek into a lesser-known side of living in Australia."
Reading Excursions - Review
". . . while this starts off as a hate/love, romantic comedy, there is so much heart and depth to it. . . . This is an absolutely adorable, heart-warming, and light-hearted read with serious messages throughout. The writer’s style was easy to follow and she moved the story along more and more. So much so that I found it hard to put this book down. It was just **THAT** good! Even when the writer threw in a realistic, heart-stopping, and shocking tragedy – I had to keep reading.
Locks, Hooks and Books - Review
"I m giving A Girl’s Guide to the Outback a very well deserved five plus stars. I have already highly recommended it to my friends. Readers who enjoy a sweet romance will not want to pass on this one. I loved it!"
ABOUT the AUTHOR:
Australian author Jessica Kate writes inspirational romances with wit, sass, and grit. Jessica is a screenwriting groupie, cohost of the StoryNerds vlog and podcasts, and her favorite place to be—apart from Mum and Dad’s back deck—is a theme park. She has traveled North America and Australia, and samples her favorite pasta wherever she goes—but the best (so far) is still the place around the corner from her corporate day job as a training developer. She loves watching sitcoms with her housemates and being a leader in a new church plant.
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One winner will receive a print copy of Love and Other Mistakes by Jessica Kate
Ends February 12, 2020
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