Christian Book Previews Home
Christian Book Previews
Book Jacket

Trade Paperback
432 pages
Aug 2011
Tyndale House Publishers

The First Gardener

by Denise Hildreth Jones

Review  |   Author Bio  |  Read an Excerpt


The First Gardener by Denise Hildreth Jones is a heartwarming tale focused on the first family of the Tennessee governor and his staff. Jones is a master of description, effortlessly placing the reader in the center of the story through her words. With the perfect balance of tender and intense moments, she tells this heart-wrenching tale in a way that will not allow the reader to put down the book. Even when the perspective switches back and forth between different characters, Jones keeps it genuine and honest.

The story centers on Gray and Mackenzie London, the Governor of Tennessee and his wife, who struggle with infertility. After ten years of sorrow and disappointment, they finally have their precious daughter Maddie. Jones shows the difficulties they face in everyday life, from marriage to politics. Even though they are a first family, they go through the same struggles as everyone else. With faith in God, time, patience, and love, they find hope and healing amidst their trials.

From the riveting descriptions that will make the readers taste, see, smell, and feel the action, to the intense or tender moments that will have everyone empathizing with the characters, this original and vivid story by Denise Hildreth Jones will keep readers captivated every page of the way. This book is a perfect story for any woman, young or old, looking for a good book with a positive outlook on life. – Taylor Lake,

Book Jacket:

Jeremiah Williams has been tending the gardens of the Tennessee governor’s mansion for over twenty-five years. And like most first families who have come and gone, this one has stolen his heart.

Mackenzie and her husband, Governor Gray London, have struggled for ten years to have a child and are now enjoying a sweet season of life—anticipating the coming reelection and sending their precious daughter, Maddie, off to kindergarten—when a tragedy tears their world apart. As the entire state mourns, Mackenzie falls into a grief that threatens to swallow her whole.

Though his heart is also broken, Jeremiah realizes that his gift of gardening is about far more than pulling weeds and planting flowers. It’s about tending hearts as well. As he uses the tools that have been placed in his hands, he gently begins to cultivate the hard soil of Mackenzie’s heart, hoping to help her realize what it took him years to discover. A Southern tale of loss, love, and living, The First Gardner reminds us that all of life is a gift, but our heart is the most valuable gift of all.