Read Always on My Mind Online

Authors: Susan May Warren

Tags: #FICTION / Christian / Romance, #FICTION / Romance / Contemporary

Always on My Mind

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Praise for the Christiansen Family Series

When I Fall in Love

“[
When I Fall in Love
is] an exquisite romance. Profoundly touching on the topic of facing fears, this book is a true gem.”

ROMANTIC TIMES

“Readers who are already enamored of the sprawling Christiansen clan will feel even more connected, while those new to Warren will be brought right into the fold.”

BOOKLIST

“Warren has a knack for creating captivating and relatable characters that pull the reader deep into the story.”

RADIANT LIT

It Had to Be You


It Had to Be You
is a sigh-worthy, coming-into-her-own romance highlighting the importance of family, the necessity of faith, and how losing yourself for the right reasons can open your heart to something beautiful.”

SERENA CHASE
,
USA TODAY

“This character-driven tale with a beautiful love story . . . gives excellent spiritual insight and a gorgeously written look at what it means to surrender and let go.”

ROMANTIC TIMES

“Susan May Warren delivers another beautiful, hope-filled story of faith that makes the reader fall further in love with this captivating and intriguing family. . . . Powerful storytelling gripped me from beginning to end . . . [and] lovable characters ensure that the reader becomes invested in their lives.”

RADIANT LIT

“This is one author who is only getting better with each book, and I cannot wait to find out which character we are next invited to meet in this Christiansen family.”

FICTION ADDICT

“A gem of a story, threaded with truth and hope, laughter and romance. Susan May Warren brings the Christiansen family to life, as if they might be my family or yours, with her smooth writing and engaging storytelling.”

RACHEL HAUCK
, BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF
THE WEDDING DRESS

Take a Chance on Me

“Warren’s new series launch has it all: romance, suspense, and intrigue. It is sure to please her many fans and win her new readers, especially those who enjoy Terri Blackstock.”

LIBRARY JOURNAL

“Warren . . . has crafted an engaging tale of romance, rivalry, and the power of forgiveness.”

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

“Warren once again creates a compelling community full of vivid individuals whose anguish and dreams are so real and relatable, readers will long for every character to attain the freedom their hearts desire.”

BOOKLIST


Take a Chance on Me
is the first of six books in this new series from prolific author Susan May Warren
 
—and I couldn’t be more excited! I’ve already fallen in love with the Christiansen family . . . and I can’t wait to see how Warren brings true and lasting love into the lives of Darek’s two brothers and three sisters.”

SERENA CHASE
,
USA TODAY

“A compelling story of forgiveness and redemption,
Take a Chance on Me
will have readers taking a chance on each beloved character!”

CBA RETAILERS + RESOURCES

“Warren’s latest is a touching tale of love discovered and the meaning of family.”

ROMANTIC TIMES

Visit Tyndale online at
www.tyndale.com
.

Visit Susan May Warren’s website at
www.susanmaywarren.com
.

TYNDALE
and Tyndale’s quill logo are registered trademarks of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

Always on My Mind

Copyright © 2014 by Susan May Warren. All rights reserved.

Cover photograph copyright © by Tom Merton/Glow Images. All rights reserved.

Designed by Jennifer Phelps

Edited by Sarah Mason

Published in association with the literary agency of The Steve Laube Agency, 5025 N. Central Ave., #635, Phoenix, AZ 85012.

Job 42:5 taken from the New King James Version.
®
Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Luke 19:10 taken from the Holy Bible,
New International Version
,
®
NIV
.
®
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.
®
Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
www.zondervan.com
.

Always on My Mind
is a work of fiction. Where real people, events, establishments, organizations, or locales appear, they are used fictitiously. All other elements of the novel are drawn from the author’s imagination.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

Warren, Susan May, date.

  Always on my mind / Susan May Warren.

    pages cm.
 
— (Christiansen family)

  ISBN 978-1-4143-7844-2 (softcover : acid-free paper) 1. Man-woman relationships
 
—Fiction. 2. Minnesota
 
—Fiction. I. Title.

  PS3623.A865A79 2015

  813´.-6
 
—dc23 2014036475

ISBN 978-1-4964-0352-0 (ePub); ISBN 978-1-4143-8482-5 (Kindle); ISBN 978-1-4964-0353-7 (Apple)

Build: 2014-11-26 08:32:33

For Your glory, Lord

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

W
HEN
I’
M IN THE MIDDLE
of a story, it’s always on my mind and it’s a little dangerous to be around me. You never know when I’ll corner you in the kitchen to work out a scene or call you to ask for help with “just one tiny detail.”

I rely on my circle of supporters more than they realize, I’m sure. But with each story, they show me that they are not going to abandon me. That they’ll stand by me and throw me ideas (or critiques!) when I need them. I’m so grateful.

Their sacrifice doesn’t go unnoticed, so my deepest appreciation goes to:

Rachel Hauck, who worked through every scene with me, faithful on the other end of the phone. I couldn’t write a book without her.

David Warren, who sits down and works through all my character kinks (and the male POV! What a gift!). Thank you for your brilliance.

Sarah Erredge and her cute husband, Neil, who learned that even he can be pulled into brainstorming.

Peter Warren, my wonderful, crazy middle child, who inspired Casper’s wild, adventurous heart.

Noah Warren, who has Casper’s sensitive, loving personality and is my last brainstorming victim left at home. You are a treasure!

Andrew, my Thor. Life with you is always exciting.

Karen Watson, who always knows just how to round out a story and make it stronger. Yes, I mean it
 
—you are brilliant.

Sarah Mason, for her amazing editing skills. You make this feel easier than it is.

Jesus, who shows me every day that I belong to Him and that He loves me.

And to my amazing readers
 
—you bless me with your encouragement. As I write, you are always on my mind. Thank you for reading the Christiansen Family series!

My dearest Casper,

It’s not easy to be the middle child, the one who is neither the oldest
 
—the responsible legacy bearer
 
—nor the youngest, pampered and cherished just because he is the last. The middle must both follow and lead, must know how to soothe wounded pride and embolden others to greatness. The middle child must know how to love.

You, Casper, possess this beautiful gift. You are an amazing middle child, carrying both the dark hair (I’m sorry, Son, but you are most likely destined to lose your glorious locks early) and pensive blue eyes of your father and the heart of your mother
 
—compassionate, sensitive, and seeking to nurture others.

Unfortunately that heart I gave you makes you feel more deeply, wound easily, and
 
—sometimes to your detriment
 
—love without reserve.

I wish you truly understood what a delight you are! From the moment you arrived, hearty and charming, you won our hearts. I remember you standing in your crib, mesmerized by Darek, coddled by Eden and Grace. You cried when they cried, laughed at their teasing, and even when they hurt you, you followed them.

Then the others arrived and you decided to love them with everything you had. Despite the age difference between
you and Amelia, you tried to understand her. Most of all, I know watching Owen rise in fame couldn’t have been easy, but you bore it, cheered him on, believed in him.

If only you could see your own light, the one that shines out past the shadows your brothers cast over you. You try so hard to fit into their lives, to hold up your unspoken promises, believing for some reason that you are second best. And that if you don’t accomplish or find something extraordinary, you will be forgotten.

You are the epic middle of the story, Casper. That delicious, rich, charming, sometimes-challenging, always-compelling middle that holds the family together. You are the life of the party, the spark that draws us close. Your belief that there are some things worth fighting for inspires us, and your courage to seek the precious in life is like the heart of Christ.

This is my prayer for you. That you would see how much the world needs you. How valuable you are to God, to us. And that you would no longer see yourself as second best but as someone worth finding and cherishing.

Do not let the world steal away your tender, compassionate heart. It is precious in God’s sight.

And mine.

Your loving mother

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