||Wings ePress, Inc.
At fifty-two, Kate Reynolds believed she had her life in order—a career, her own home, treasured friends, and financial stability. When she is asked to take an early retirement, the bottom falls out of her perfect world and Kate plummets through the hole.
Kate leaves her home in Pittsburgh and moves to a small town in Connecticut to pursue a long-dormant dream, where she soon finds herself faced with questions about her life and her choices. As she faces her own truths, she finds the freedom to accept the second chance life has offered her.
Wings ePress, Inc.
Linda Rettstatt, Author
And The Truth Will Set You Free is the story of a woman who summons the courage to face an unexpected change in her life, seizing the opportunity for a second chance at happiness. It is also about the value of enduring friendships.
This book is dedicated to every woman
who has ever stood at one place, gazed off to another and said, “Some day, I will go there.”
Your journey begins with one step, as did mine.
Kate stared at the fire as she spoke. “I did discover some truths while I was away and I want to say them out loud so I don’t dismiss them. I think that, once you speak a truth, you own it and it owns you.” Her eyes met his briefly, then fixed back on the fire. “I went to Pittsburgh because I was homesick. And I came back here because I was homesick. Truth number one: home is where your heart is. Pennsylvania, the town where I grew up, the mountains, my friends—I’ll carry all of this in my heart always. But something beckoned me long ago and I didn’t follow, mostly out of fear. And, for the life of me, I can’t remember what I was so afraid of. Maybe of failure. Perhaps of getting lost and not being able to find my way back? I don’t know. But my heart is in writing and in this place now. I just know that the war between my head and my heart is over. I’ve called a truce. I want to be at peace.”
Kate shifted her gaze to Sam, saw that his eyes were locked on her, then looked back at the fire. “Truth number two: I’ve lived out of my head, out of an idea of who I should be and what my life should be, but it’s not been genuine. I was so good at it that I even had myself convinced I was happy.”
“I think you can be hard on yourself,” Sam said softly.
She looked at him. “Do you know I was proud of the fact that I hadn’t even taken a sick day from work in almost three years? What was I trying to prove? And to whom? I actually thought this was an admirable thing, to go to work no matter how I felt. That brought me to truth number three: my life was all about performance. I got all A’s in school because that made my grandfather proud. I went to college because that made me unique in my family. I married Brian because it was what my mother expected. After our divorce, I immersed myself in my job because I had to prove I could be strong and self-sustaining.”
Kate stood and paced back and forth in front of the fireplace. “I don’t know where I got that script for my life, but I am so grateful fate intervened. Otherwise I’d still be sitting behind a desk, gazing at a calendar picture and wondering for just a moment each morning what my life could be like, if only...”
She sat down again, noticing that Sam was watching her intently and had said nothing. “I’m sorry. I sound like I’m raving. Maybe I need to find a therapist to dump this on.”
He smiled. “Kate, do you realize how much you apologize for yourself? It’s okay. It means a lot that you think of me as... as a friend and you want to share this with me. So?”
Kate leaned back and looked at him. “From the time I was old enough to read, I knew I wanted to write. And I could see the stories running in my head like full-length feature films. I thought I came here to East Holbridge to write. But I know I could write anywhere. So, truth number four: I came here to find something, or rather, someone—me. So much has happened that has set my world on a tilt and out of my control. I remember reading somewhere that it’s not the destination, but the journey that’s most important. See, I thought it was about being here, about becoming a writer. I learned that it’s really about the journey to get here—to a woman who is a writer.”
She took a deep breath and looked at her hands, “God, that sounds so self-centered.” She stole a quick glance at Sam. “I know, I don’t have to apologize or explain. And that brings me to truth number five: I will never be content until I can be content with myself. I’ve been chasing this illusive idea of contentment without even knowing what it was. I think I had the notion that, when all was right in my world, I would be content. So I put my energies into keeping things right. I think the faucet blowing off the shower that night was a metaphor for my life and I failed to see it at the time. The illusion is that I have any control. And so, there you are—the truths about Kate.” She took another deep breath and sat quietly, gazing again into the fire.
Sam waited a moment before he spoke. “Kate, I’m not sure what to say, except that I know life has a way of bringing us face to face with ourselves. And still we have a choice. We can face ourselves and take life up on its offer to lead us to where we need to be or we can play turtle and pull into our shells until the coast seems to be clear. Then we wait for the next time. We just keep doing it until we get it right. I think that’s why we associate wisdom with age. It’s an amazing journey, isn’t it?”
In his response, Kate realized the depth of what she’d shared and suddenly felt naked, exposed. She folded her arms across her chest and drew her legs up under her. “I think there’s a truth number six that I don’t know yet. And that scares the hell out of me.”
Maggie whined by the door and Sam walked over to let her out. When he returned, he sat on the sofa next to Kate. His arm rested behind her, the heat of his hand burning into her shoulder. He spoke softly, looking directly into her eyes. “Truth number six: You haven’t allowed yourself to need anyone for so long, and it scares you when you find yourself needing other people?”
Copyright 2005, Linda K. Rettstatt
Fallen Angels Reviews
RATED: FIVE ANGELS
and listed as RECOMMENDED READ
And The Truth Will Set You Free
Kate Reynolds never thought too much on middle life, even after her gynecologist told her she was officially in the menopausal mode. While others were searching for their identities, when they reached a point in their life, she considers hers intact. She was feeling pretty much in control until two weeks ago when everything in her life tumbled. After twelve years, she loses her job in management because of cutbacks. She wonders what she will do at fifty-two. Her good friend, Terri, believes this is a wake-up call for Kate. She suggest Kate move to Connecticut and live the life she always wanted, as a writer. Perhaps Terri is right. A new location would be a new start. So leaving Pittsburgh, she sets her sights on East Holbridge, Connecticut. Sam Turner was an architect until he lost his wife and daughter and went into a deep depression. Now he is a handyman around town and a great carpenter. Kate enjoys their conversations when he comes over to help out or deliver her firewood. He makes her feel special, something she hasn’t felt in a long time. While a part of discovering a new love is a bit scary, another part makes her heart exuberant when she is near Sam. She is deeply touched by the way he cares for Doc, an elderly man who rented her the cottage. While building a new life, Kate hopes it will turn into something most beneficial.
And The Truth Will Set You Free is an incredible voyage, not only for the character of Kate, but for this reader, too. Kate is the embodiment of practically every woman who has a dream, or someone who has been forced to begin anew in life. Ms. Rettstatt allows her character to soar, and turn her life around, with a remarkable alteration. I was deeply touched by Kate’s journey. There were moments I almost felt as if I was the one in Kate’s shoes, taking each incredible step. The story is so visual I couldn’t help but be lost in the moment. It opens doors and gives one thought in many directions in one’s life. With engaging characters, and a new romantic venture, Kate’s zest for a new life is a remarkable story that every one should read and live in their heart. Kate and Sam are great together. Grab a chair and take an adventure of a lifetime in this recommended read.
Reviewed by: Linda L.
One line in And The Truth Will Set You Free, defines the theme: life presents us with opportunities for change. Kate Reynold’s life, as she knew it, comes to a grinding halt with the loss of her job. Bewildered at being forced into a change at her mid-stage in life, she feels groundless and decides to move to a small town in Connecticut. Here she finds new friends and the courage to accept the challenge of a long-ago dream.
Ms. Rettstatt’s descriptive writing carries the reader through Kate’s despair to her discovery that new beginnings can present their own rewards. The appearance of a kind-hearted man, with issues of his own, lends even greater substance to a story that will warm your heart. I take pleasure in recommending this novel and others by this author that I’m sure will follow.
Romance novelist with www.wingsepress.com and www.champagnebooks.com
This is the most moving story it has been my pleasure to read in a very long time. It made me rethink my own life. A courageous woman loses her job and finds her life must take a new direction.
Kate is an organized type of woman, one who plots and plans every move and when fate steps in, she finally allows herself to follow her life long dream of being a writer. The characters are engaging without being cliché, as each new person enters her life you find you want to meet them too. There is real life in this book, and one that should not be taken lightly. Kate learns little by little to trust her own instincts with the help of her golden dog Maggie. When she is confused about the path her life has taken, she steps back and learns to trust not only herself but those around her.
The book made me laugh and made me cry. I read to the end all too fast, because I would love to read more of this uplifting tale. I shall look for Linda Rettstatt on the shelves of bookstores everywhere. On an uplifting scale of one to ten, this is a twelve.
—A. Dee Carey
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