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"Even though I’m on maternity leave, I read this book late at night, in the morning," Jenna said. "I loved it."
Jenna's pick for September is "The Dearly Beloved," by Cara Wall.
"It’s a book about faith, friendship, relationships and what connects us," Jenna said of her selection.
The novel follows two couples brought together to lead a historic church in New York City during the 1960s and traces the course of their lives before and after they intersect.
The four main characters are all from different parts of the U.S. and different family backgrounds — as they're forced to grapple with challenging circumstances during a tumultuous era in our country's history, their past continues to shape the decisions they make, and their faith continues to shift.
"Each couple has struggles — some of which are secret, some of which become well known. These struggles force them to come together, become stronger and find faith in each other as well as in a higher power," Jenna explained.
While the book begins in another era, the relationships it presents feel just as relevant today.
"The relationship dynamics seem universal," Jenna said. "The way they lean on each other and love each other — and how the dynamics shift through some heartbreaking moments — reminds me of other couples that I know."
Not only is it the kind of story you'll want to discuss with your book club, but it's the kind of book you may want to share with your partner, too.
"I think it would be really interesting to read with your spouse and with friends," Jenna explained. "I told (my husband) Henry right after I finished it that I thought he should read it."
Above all, "The Dearly Beloved" is a gracefully written novel that will have you savoring each sentence.
"I couldn’t help but underline these beautiful passages about life and faith and love," said Jenna.
We hope you'll join us in reading this month and can't wait to hear what you think!
To celebrate the beginning of the month, we'll be giving away copies of “The Dearly Beloved” to #ReadWithJenna Instagram followers starting today, and you can expect even more surprises throughout the month. In order to be entered, follow the Read With Jenna Instagram account and comment on the post above explaining why you or your book club deserve a copy of the book.
To stay involved all month long, be sure to follow us on Instagram (don't forget to tag your photos with the hashtag, #ReadWithJenna), join our Read With Jenna Facebook group and follow along on Goodreads to continue the conversation about "The Dearly Beloved."
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Void where prohibited. Legal residents of the 50 US or DC who are 18 or older. Begins September 4, 2019 at 8:30 A.M. ET and ends September 5, 2019 at 8:30 A.M. ET. Limit 1 entry per person. For Official Rules, odds, and prize details, visit https://www.today.com/popculture/readwithjenna-contest-official-rules-t161825. Sponsors: TODAY Show and NBCUniversal Media, LLC.
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