Greening of a Heart


When the Bishop insists that Martin Winchester take a sabbatical from his parish to restore his depleted energy and regain his spiritual focus, his wife Hannah is left on her own for the first time in years. Her new found freedom gives her an opportunity to reflect on her life. Retreating into the newly-renovated vicarage garden in the Cotswold’s village of Burford, Hannah not only wants to escape the demands of her role as the vicar’s wife, but to reinvent herself. Lives begin to change after Henry Bernard arrives in Burford to solve a family mystery. Not only Henry, but a young artist, an electrician and his entrepreneur wife, the new owners of the Bay Tree Inn, and a dying spinster, all embark with Hannah on an unforgettable summer as their lives intertwine in unforeseen ways. If you like the novels of Rosamunde Pilcher (The Shell Seekers, September) you will enjoy Greening of a Heart.

Buy Greening of a Heart through Amazon, NOOK, or the Apple iTunes Store.

Don’t have an e-reader? You can read the book on your computer. Click on highlighted text to download a free Kindle application for your PC or Mac.

10 Responses to Greening of a Heart

  1. Some of the first e-mails have come to me commenting on Greening of a Heart. I wanted to post several of them that made me jump up and down in place while yelling, “They liked it.”

    “Just loved it! I loved your Hannah character, spunky,wise, affectionate, totally appealing. Loved Christine and her quiet grace as I have had many loved older women in my life and treasure them. Enjoyed all the descriptions and the setting, the botanical references. I have always felt some gardens are a place to find the holy voice, perfect for peace and reflections. More so than many churches…” Nina C.

    • Karen Brown says:

      I’ve just finished reading your book in anticipation of our March Book Club meeting. I enjoyed it so much and can’t wait for our discussion. Such great character development, descriptive prose, plot movement and anticipation……all wonderful! It’s thrilling that “one of our own” is so accomplished. There will be much more to be said at the meeting….
      Karen B.

  2. This e-mail is what any author would love to hear and I smiled all day after reading it.
    “I think Greening of a Heart is a beautiful story and one I would recommend to others. .All the people in the story stand out on their own, with their own issues, challenges, and
    personalities. The interplay between them is authentic, believable, and heartwarming…Frances Harper was one of my favorite characters….” Genie W.

  3. I read Greening of a Heart while on vacation in Maine, I left the book I was reading to take just a quick peak at this new one with the intention of coming back to it at a later time. The short of it was that I just could not bring myself to leave any of the characters which are so well developed by Stephany Houghtlin. I loved every one of them and especially loved the way the garden seemed to bring out the best in each one and to bring each life into focus. I read it almost without putting it down and truly missed the characters when I finished. I had the feeling that I would like this story to go on and on, I’d like to check in on them after a time, check in on the garden as well. A wonderful read, very lovely and quiet at a time when things are not so lovely and the noise of the world often overwhelms. Betsy N

  4. Sara and Jack Kirby says:

    Stevie, Jack and I do not have Kindle or Nook, but we will try to access “Greening”. If it can be gotten in book form it will take its place on our shelf that holds books written by old, new and current friends. We visited Lexington last year for the first time in years and played tourist through the campus, Keenland, farms, and, of course the Kappa House. Some places seemed very familiar, others disorienting. We hope your book rekindles fond memories of walking in the Cotswolds, which we did in 2002.
    Two of our children and their families live in the Chicago area, one in Glen Ellyn the other in Grayslake, so we are traveling between the two often each year. Our very best to you and Bob, and congratulations on your writing success.

    Sara and Jack Kirby

  5. Londen says:

    Beautiful writing, thank you for the link to find your book! So happy you found my blog since it led me to you.


  6. Donna says:

    Reading your book took me back to Burford where we spent some of the most perfect days of our vacations. I thoroughly enjoyed every second of the story. Donna

  7. pbmgarden says:

    Stepheny, I enjoyed spending time with your characters in this absorbing story. Especially admired how Hannah reinvented and reinvested in herself. Susie

  8. You sold me. I just bought the book. I hope I have time to read it soon. It sounds like just the sort of book I like to read.

    • Welcome to the world of Hannah Winchester, to the Vicarage garden, to the lovely village, Burford, in the Cotswolds. PLEASE get back to me when you have found time to read Greening of a Heart. I’m delighted to meet you at the garden gate and include you in the telling of this story.

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