Dr. Lin Stepp is a native Tennessean, a businesswoman, and an educator. She is on adjunct faculty at Tusculum College where she teaches research and has taught a wide variety of psychology and counseling courses for over 16 years. Her business background includes over 25 years in marketing, sales, production art, and regional publishing. She has editorial and writing experience in regional magazines and in the academic field. Stepp has nine published novels each set in different locations around the Smoky Mountains. Her novels published by Kensington Publishing include Down by the River (June 2014), Makin’ Miracles (January 2015), Saving Laurel Springs (October 2015) and Welcome Back (March 2016) as well as a short novella A Smoky Mountain Gift included in the 2014 Christmas anthology, featuring Fern Michaels, and titled When the Snow Falls. Previous titles include: Second Hand Rose, Delia’s Place, For Six Good Reasons, Tell Me About Orchard Hollow, and The Foster Girls. Stepp and her husband have published a Smokies hiking guide titled The Afternoon Hiker (2014).
Set against the breathtaking backdrop of the Great Smoky Mountains, Lin Stepp's sweet and touching story follows one woman's journey back to the home--and the husband--she left behind…
When Lydia Cunningham left her husband and moved to Atlanta ten years ago, it was with equal parts sadness and certainty. She loved her home in North Carolina, with its lush green hills and crisp, clean air. And in truth, she still loved John, too. But she could no longer live with her mother-in-law's constant criticism and the distance it created in her marriage.
Now, thanks to a job offer at her alma mater, Lydia is moving back, renting the old country house where she and John lived as newlyweds. She hopes to strengthen the frayed ties with her daughter, Mary Beth, and build a relationship with her grandsons. As for John--it's clear from the moment Lydia sees him standing in her doorway that he hopes they might rekindle their bond. The spark between them hasn't dimmed--but neither have Lydia's memories of past hurts. Yet in this magnificent landscape that's always felt like home, she might find a way to forgive and begin again…
In a heartwarming novel set amid the lush splendor of the Great Smoky Mountains, Lin Stepp reunites two kindred spirits in a charming story of first love and surprising second chances...
See ya later--and love you forever, Rhea Dean. Those are the words Rhea's childhood sweetheart, Carter Layman, used to say whenever they parted. Not that she places much stock in words anymore. After all, Carter drove off to college in California, promising to make a fortune to help save their families' vacation resort. Instead he stayed there and married someone else. It fell to Rhea to keep Laurel Springs going and she's done just that, working long hours on the camp grounds, buoyed by the beauty of her Smokies home.
Now a widower with a young son, Carter has achieved huge success as a games developer. But he always planned to return to the spring-fed lake and the soaring mountains, to the covered bridge where he and Rhea made wishes and traded kisses. He's coming home to turn Laurel Springs into the place they planned to build together. And as he reveals the truth about his past, Rhea must decide whether to trust in the man--and the dreams--she's never forgotten.
Set in Tennessee's postcard-perfect Smoky Mountains, Lin Stepp's Makin' Miracles is an inspiring tale that reveals why love and forgiveness are most important just when they seem most impossible. . .
Zola Devon has always been a little different. Half Tahitian, with long black hair and dark eyes, she's especially distinctive in the mountain town of Gatlinburg. She even stocks her gift shop, Nature's Corner, with items that reflect her island heritage and tantalize tourists. But it's her spot-on intuition that truly sets Zola apart. When she gets a hunch about a person, she's almost always right. And when the surly photographer who owns the gallery next door starts meddling in her business, she can only hope that, for once, her instincts are wrong.
The one thing Spencer Jackson loves more than his camera is the majestic scenery of the Smoky Mountains. Reeling from his painful past, he's settled in a cabin in the woods to train his lens on the breathtaking landscape. A woman as uniquely beguiling as Zola could only throw his simple, uncomplicated days into chaos--and force him to lay bare his darkest secrets. But as their lives become unavoidably intertwined, they both may discover the beauty of the truth, and the joy of the unexpected.
Set against the backdrop of Tennessee's breathtaking Smoky Mountains, Lin Stepp's Down By the River is a warm-hearted novel that proves it's never too late--or too early--for a fresh start. . .
While on a visit to the Smokies, Grace Conley makes a stunning decision: she's going to walk away from her busy life in Nashville to move to tiny Townsend and open a bed and breakfast. There's a beautiful old inn for sale along the Little River that will do perfectly. Of course, Grace's family is scandalized. After all, she's a middle-aged widow! And as a career homemaker, she's always been available for babysitting, chauffeuring, and generally being the peacemaker among her grown children. Has Grace lost her mind? She begins to wonder the same thing once she finds herself attracted to the local ladies' man. But the surprises don't stop there. . .
To further complicate her move, Grace's daughter, Margaret, has grudgingly come to live with her. Having just graduated from college, remote Townsend is not where she envisions her future. Yet the handsome young minister next door is convinced he and Margaret are meant for each other. As life choices abound, soon both women will discover that the biggest decisions require confidence, a sense of humor--and a deep, abiding faith.
Life is sometimes hard as a widowed, single mother with three young children, a business to run, bills to meet, and debts to pay. Despite it all, Rosalyn McCreary tries to count her blessings. She cherishes her shop, Second Hand Rose, her family and friends. A practical woman by necessity, she seldom indulges in impulse and fancy—except for that crazy spring day she danced with a total stranger she’d never met. Whatever was she thinking? And to learn later that her mystery stranger, Kendrick Lanier, planned to move to Wear’s Valley. Great. Just one more problem she doesn’t need. Kendrick soon pursues her, despite Rosalyn’s efforts to crowd him out, finding ways into her life, and into the lives of her children, and creating complications Rosalyn simply doesn’t want to deal with. Especially since the more she learns of the man’s life and secrets, the more she realizes how ill-suited they are. With Rosalyn and Kendrick’s troubled pasts, and Rosalyn’s temper, you’ll find it a toss-up to decide if these two stubborn, determined individuals should, or shouldn’t, ever get together.
Delia Eleanor Walker’s life is perfectly planned, the wedding date set, the invitations mailed, and her family gathered at the North Carolina beach house ready to celebrate—when Delia receives Prentice’s unexpected fed-ex announcing he’s married someone else! What on earth will she do? She’s centered every aspect of her future around her upcoming marriage, and Delia knows her family will somehow blame the break-up on her. They always do. They’ll call it one more immature botch-up by the baby of the family.
In her lap, among the mail just received, Delia seizes on an answer—an invitation from Maureen Cross for a last visit to her Aunt Dee’s old cottage behind Gatlinburg. It’s cowardly to run, but Delia does, hoping to find in the mountains time to heal and space to chart a new direction for her life.
Instead of peace and quiet, Delia finds a troubled cousin she’s never met hiding out in her aunt’s house and an old childhood playmate and heartthrob, Tanner Cross, back in town, reminding her of yet another time she made a fool of herself romantically. To top it off, a criminal is on the loose, along with an increasingly complicated array of new problems that Delia never, in a million years, expected to encounter.
A young woman with six foster children, under twelve, hopes for patience, peace, and a bigger house – but love? Not hardly. However, sometimes fate deals an unexpected hand.
When Alice Graham came back to look at the sale property at the base of the Smoky Mountains in Greenbrier, it was absolutely not because of that recurring dream of the cowboy. She’d seen him high on the ridge top in the winter and felt a peculiar drawing and attraction flash between them – but she certainly never expected to see him again. When she did, a month after buying the rural property, that odd attraction surprisingly still sizzled in the air.
However, it seemed unlikely that anything would come of any romantic feelings, because Alice had bought the property and its house as a home for herself and the six Stuart siblings she’d agreed to foster. Six kids were enough to scare any man off right away – especially a confirmed bachelor like Harrison Ramsey with unsolved mysteries and unpleasant rumors floating around in his past. However, fate soon had Harrison mixing in with Alice’s and the children’s lives.
Harrison Ramsey, with his riding stable nearby, proved a natural draw for six kids, and he soon found himself becoming entwined with the Stuart children and with Alice. How events play out to connect Alice, Harrison, and the children, and to create a new family, despite all the accidents, upsets, and ongoing misunderstandings, make for a heart-warming story to read.
It is difficult to recover when hurt by those we love and trust - but in this second novel in the beloved Smoky Mountain Series, a young woman finds healing and new confidence while staying in a rural cabin on the quiet side of the mountains.
New Yorker Jenna Howell has spent many pleasant hours listening to her older neighbor, Sam Oliver, spin stories about his beloved home place on Orchard Hollow Road in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains. This rural world is far removed from Jenna's life in downtown Manhattan, but when several shocking events and marital betrayal come her way, Jenna - a previously sheltered girl - decides to take Sam up on his offer to visit his cabin in the mountains.
At Sam's place in Townsend, Jenna meets new friends, including her good-looking neighbor, artist Boyce Hart. A quick attraction sparks between Jenna and Boyce, proving to be both exciting and confusing at this time in Jenna's life. It’s not the right time for a new relationship for either Jenna or Boyce. However, as spring blooms in the Smokies, Jenna blooms. She gains a new appreciation for unselfish love and simple pleasures, develops confidence in herself and her talents, and begins to discover new understandings about faith. Just as she is finding happiness and beginning to heal, an unexpected tragedy forces her to return to New York City. Here she has to test out her new-found strengths, resolve the problems in her life, and decide on the direction for her future. Choosing the right course proves to be more difficult than expected - as two very different lives vie with opposite allures for Jenna's heart.
The deep secrets – that restrict us and limit our lives – are at the heart of this first, engaging novel in the new Smoky Mountain series.
Vivian Delaney – in The Foster Girls – arrives in the quiet Wear’s Valley, on the backside of the Smoky Mountains, carrying a heavy load of hidden problems – and eager to find a quiet place to escape the recent troubles of her past. However, secrets are hard to keep, and right away Vivian encounters unexpected challenges with her landlord, Scott Jamison. From Vivian’s first meeting with Scott – at the end of a rifle barrel – Scott seems purposed to push past all Vivian’s defenses and to find a way into her heart.
Just as Vivian begins to trust Scott – and is able to share her secrets with him and new friends in the valley – love for a little foster girl, Sarah Taylor, challenges Vivian and Scott’s new relationship. When Sarah is lost in the mountains, the suspense and conflict build – with the lives of several characters caught tantalizingly in the balance.