Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.
~ John 15:13
Swedish immigrant Inga Linberg might not be as beautiful as her flirtatious sisters, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t share their romantic ideas. When Dirk Bridger, a handsome but beleaguered Iowa farmer, approaches her minister father for help in caring for his orphaned nieces and ailing mother, Inga immediately volunteers. She goes to live at the Bridger farm as a housekeeper and finds that all is in disarray. Gradually, with patience and understanding, she begins to smooth the family’s rough edges. As Inga falls in love with Dirk’s little nieces, she is helplessly drawn to their bitter uncle, too. If only there was a way to live forever with this charming but lost family. But could she risk her secret dream of being loved by Dirk in return, when she knows that his dream is to leave them all behind?
Awards & Recognitions
RITA® Winner – Best Inspirational
(see the video of the awards presentation)
In its secular form, PATTERNS OF LOVE was awarded the 1999 RITA Award for best inspirational romance. This heart-warming prairie romance has been reworked for the Christian market and promises to establish Hatcher as a noteworthy Christian romance author. The second book in Hatcher’s “Coming to America” series, this title is set in late-1800s Iowa and features Swedish immigrant Inga Linberg. As a pastor’s eldest daughter, Inga always has been the most sensible of five sisters. Her orderly existence is rocked when Dirk Bridger hires her as housekeeper and caregiver for his two young nieces and his ailing mother. Although a wife is the last thing Dirk wants, desperate circumstances lead him to offer Inga a marriage of convenience. Inga loves the handsome farmer but wonders if she can endure a marriage on his terms. Even as Dirk is increasingly beguiled by his bride’s sweet spirit, Inga’s insecurities cause her to barricade her heart. Throughout the book, Inga’s selfless love is contrasted effectively with her flighty sister’s selfish attitudes. Both girls experience emotional upheaval as they learn important lessons about life, love, and self-acceptance. — CBA Marketplace
Patterns of Love introduces us to people so credible, portrays a love story so sweet, you’ll believe it could really have happened. You’ll wish it had happened to you. A simple story, simply told, Patterns of Love makes you yearn for a simpler time, at the side of one of the most wonderful heroes you’ve ever met. Reminiscent in many ways of Willa Cather’s My Antonia, the folks in 1897 Uppsala, Iowa will sneak right into your heart, and you won’t want to let them go. Patterns of Love is basically the story of how two very hurt, very lonely people find each other amidst all the layers, and how hearts can be healed through the power of genuine love. [It] is not the kind of romance I usually read, so it is a testament to Ms. Hatcher’s skill that I picked up this book and did not put it down until I had finished it. And, when I finally did, that I regretted I could not look out my kitchen window and wave to Inga and Dirk, Martha and Suzanne, the Linbergs, the Dolks, Dr. Swenson, Karl and Thea, or the rest of the wonderful population of Uppsala, Iowa. Go meet these folks for yourself. And if you end up with a little smile on your lips, a gentle tugging in your heart, or a few sentimental tears in your eyes, ja, don’t say I didn’t warn you. ~ All About Romance, Desert Isle Keeper Review