Shiloh Jacobs is an American working as a reporter in Japan. She has a handsome Latin fiancé and she loves living in Tokyo. Her life takes a dramatic turn when her fiancé suddenly takes on a female roommate and she misses her deadline for a story at her job. She rectifies the situation at work dishonestly, and her actions affect her life later in the story.
Shiloh’s mother also dies and she finds it hard to deal with all of these events happening in her life. Due to her estranged mother’s death, she must leave Japan and travel to the South (in rural Virginia) to attend the funeral. It’s hard for her to attend the funeral and meet some of her mother’s friends – Shiloh has not spoken to her mother in years and she had bad, vivid memories of her dysfunctional childhood with her mom.
Shiloh loses her job in Japan, so she must remain in the South, living in the home she’s inherited from her mother. She meets an interesting cast of country-accented people while living in Virginia. She is befriended by Adam, a professional landscaper who’s taking care of his amputee brother who was injured in Afghanistan. She also meets Tim and Becky, a country couple who have been dealing with infertility issues. There’s also Faye, one of her mother’s closest friends, who gives Shiloh a lot of details about the recent years of her mother’s life.
Shiloh has a hard time understanding the strong Christianity of her new friends. Unsaved, she’s still trying to figure out the meaning of being a Christian. She also doesn’t understand why Christians suffer, but still praise Jesus.
This book was a good, heartwarming read that portrays Shiloh’s physical journey as she relocates to rural Virginia from urban Tokyo, Japan. It also shows her emotional and spiritual journey as she discovers friendships with her new Christian friends, and she also learns more about the mother’s salvation. I highly recommend this book – it’s a wonderful, emotional story that will bring you both laughter and tears.