Dec 7, 2010

Beneath the Night Tree by Nicole Baart

Do I have a child? Julia DeSmit knew she would face the question eventually, but she didn’t expect it now. At twenty-four, she is finally content with the way her life has unfolded. A single mother to her son and young brother, she works at the local grocery store while chipping away at a two-year degree. All her free time is spent with her unorthodox family—her boys, her grandmother, and her boyfriend of five years. It’s not perfect, but Julia is happier than ever.

So when she receives the cryptic e-mail from her son’s father, Julia’s world is turned upside down. She hasn’t heard from Parker since he left her in a college parking lot nearly six years ago. But one look at her son—the spitting image of his father—is enough to convince her that, for better or worse, Parker is a part of their story. Faced with this new reality and an unexpected tragedy, Julia begins a tightrope walk between what was and what is, what she hopes for and what will be.


Nicole Baart was born and raised in a small town in Iowa, where she and husband now live with their three young sons. After the adoption of their second son, Nicole discovered a deep passion for global issues and is a founding member of a nonprofit organization that works with a church and orphanage in Liberia.

Nicole is the critically acclaimed author of three novels. After the Leaves Fall was published in 2007 and was followed by a sequel, Summer Snow, which was a Christy Award finalist. That was followed by The Moment Between, Nicole's first stand-alone novel.

Visit her Web site at

ISBN: 978-1-4143-2323-7
Release: February 2011


Beneath the Night Tree is the first book I have read by Nicole Baart, and it won't be the last.  I was immediately drawn into the story of a rather unconventional family.  Living together with Julia on the family farm is her aging grandmother, Julia's 5 year old son, and Julia's younger brother who was abandoned by their mother several years earlier.

Julia thought she had her future all planned out, and she looked forward to getting married to her boyfriend of many years.  But their world was rocked to the core when the biological father of her son appears on the scene. She reluctantly agrees to let him spend time with the boys.

I laughed and I also cried while reading this wonderful story of God's divine intervention in Julia's life.  When she thought she knew what was best for herself and her family, God gently steered her in the right direction.  Her grandmother's faith and prayers were an inspiration, and this made me miss my own grandmother terribly.

This is a fantastic story, and I really hope there is a sequel.  I would love to find out what happens next in the lives of Julia and her little family.

Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of Beneath the Night Tree from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.


  1. Thanks so much for the lovely review, Janet! I'm afraid Julia's story is over, but there are two books that come before Beneath the Night Tree. Granted, you already know the ending, but it might be fun to see how Julia's younger years unfolded. :) Blessings to you!

  2. Thank you for this post. Both the book and author were new to me and I really like the storyline which is a commonplace theme but handled well must be a very strong one.

  3. O wow. This sounds beautiful. What a lovely review!