cover image Positively, Penelope

Positively, Penelope

Pepper Basham. Thomas Nelson, $16.99 (416p) ISBN 978-0-8407-1520-3

Basham (Authentically Izzy) spins a heartwarming tale of second chances with a positive-thinking heroine at its center. American Penelope Edgewood is fresh out of college when she begins a three-month marketing internship at Darling House, the oldest theater on the small island of Skymar (think: Scottish isles). She’s been tasked with brainstorming marketing ideas to help revive the struggling business and keep its proprietors, the Gray family, from having to sell. Once in Skymar, Penelope meets straitlaced businessman Matt Gray, whom she nicknames Grumpy Gray, and his younger brother Alec. The family has been emotionally shattered by the deaths of the brothers’ mother and grandmother within the past five years, and Matt’s still recovering after his ex-wife left him a single father two years back. Matt and Penelope initially clash, but by harnessing her faith and upbeat attitude, she helps him navigate his grief and rediscover his love for dancing. An unlikely relationship blossoms between the two as they work together to save the theater. While Penelope’s relentless optimism sometimes reads as unrealistic, readers will be cheered by Basham’s quirky, likable characters and their ability to find humor and hope amid life’s trials. It’s a wholesome and winning happily-ever-after. (Aug.)