Surely you have seen the T-shirts that say "If all else fails, ask Grandma." Julia Bakker has only person who in her life who truly loves her with a Christ-like love, unconditionally. Her Grandma Bakker has been there for her through all her losses in her life. Her mother left her father and her at a very young age. She doesn't even refer to her mother as "Mom" but Janice. Her father dies when she is just 16 and she stays with her grandma. Her best friend Thomas breaks her heart when he announces that his future is now with Francesca. He promises to always be her friend even though she was hoping that someday she could be much to him.
Julia is a hard worker and a scholarship recipient. She has her chance to escape for the conservative and "everyone knows everyone else's business" town. She elects to go to Brighton University as an engineering major. She has to try and deal with her exact opposite of a roomate Becca who would rather sleep than work hard. Julia finds a friend in one of her first engineering classes. Only thing is Parker is a "teacher's assistant" who always has advice, be it good or bad for her. She tries hard but is engineering the field she really should be trying to get into or did she just pick that major so she could get the scholarship.
Julia and Parker become friends and start spending alot of time together. He gives her help in her classes and she tries to make him out to be the good quality friend that she has in Thomas. The unexpected happens and Julia's life comes crashing down. Who is there to pick up the pieces but Grandma. Grandma finds her strength in the Lord and encourages Julia but is not pushy. She leaves the Holy Spirit to do the work of changing Julia's outlook. Its time for Julia to start her life over again. Will her life be just one disappointment after another, or is there light at the end of the tunnel? Grandma has the answer but is Grandma up to date with the times?
"After the Leaves Fall" is an awesome book for readers who enjoy a young heroine who is a survivor despite the circumstances she finds herself involved. This is an excellent book by Nicole Baart, a first time novel writer. I sincerely hope Nicole writes more books as this one really kept your interest from cover to cover. It touches your heart and leaves your heart feeling that refreshed.