Chicago, early 1950s. Joan Hunt, recently returned to the country of her childhood from England, embarks on a journey she could not have invented—no job, staying at the Y, but determined to make her way and be independent. When she secures a job at Hertz, she also meets Betty Estes, soon to become one of her best friends. Betty invites Joan to room with her and her two other roomies. Joan agrees after finding there will also be room for her longtime pen pal, Evelyn, who will be joining her soon. So begins the story of Joan and Betty and Evelyn and the sisters from Minnesota, Magda and Inga.
On a day when they all unexpectedly find themselves at home, the young women decide to make a day of it. Off they go to see Singing in the Rain starring Gene Kelly. After the movie, as they’re walking down the street, they see the most gorgeous wedding dress in the window of Carson Pirie Scott. On a whim, led by the irrepressible Betty, they go into the store, all try on the dress, then impulsively decide to buy it together.
As the years passed by, they got married one by one and then passed the dress on to the next bride. Though they were not all close friends, the dress continued to connect them after their early days in Chicago in the little basement apartment were long past.
You’ll love these five women, you’ll agonize with them over their jobs and their romances, and you’ll beam with them as they each wear that very special wedding gown. This is a story you’ll not soon forget. Five stars plus!
To get Five Brides and enjoy learning their stories, click the link: Five Brides
Eva Marie Everson told me at our recent interview that a friend brought her the story with a “You have to hear this!” Eva agreed the story was very special and determined to write it. However, three years passed before she was able to get an interview with the last surviving bride, eighty-three-year-old Joan Hunt Zimmerman. Eva wrote the story, turned it in to her publisher who loved it, but came back to her saying Joan’s story was great. However, they wanted a book with all five stories in it and they hoped to have it within two months. Out went the eighty-five thousand word book (which I was a beta reader for and which was wonderful) and in two months, in went the over one hundred twenty thousand word new manuscript.
I asked Eva what she had learned about herself while working on the book(s). She said she was often reminded that no matter how crooked the path we walk upon, God straightens it and points us down His path. She learned that she could rise to the challenge of creating and writing within a very short time frame when she loved and believed in the subject.
Eva’s first published book, One True Love, published in 2000, was a compilation of stories about the engagements of people she interviewed. Once she interviewed them, she wrote their stories. This book was so successful that it was quickly followed by One True Vow about their weddings. Shadow of Dreams, a novel, followed next—the first in a series of three books—also published in 2000-2001.
Eva Marie Everson is a Carol Award Winner, has finaled for the Christy Awards, has two Maggie Awards, and two AWSA Golden Scroll Awards for Fiction. The Pot Luck Club books she wrote with Linda Evans Shepherd have sold over two hundred thousand copies. Her book adaptation of the movie, Unconditional, was a Christian Booksellers Association best seller.
Eva says she writes because she believes in the importance of fiction in faith. After all, Jesus taught in stories. She uses her fiction to tell of Jesus’ love to people in a gentle fashion.
One thing her readers don’t know about her is that while she was on a telephone interview with Christian Retailing Magazine, she was struck by lightning. Lightning struck her house, came through the phone, and literally blew her across the room. She picked herself up, apologized to the interviewer, and continued. When the interviewer, Sean Fowlds, asked what had happened and she explained, his comment was, “Shocking!”