HEART'S DESIRE is a story of things lost and things found, in particular those we often don't notice or appreciate at first glance, along with others we sometimes take for granted, such as love, friendship, and courage.

Card shark and former wild child Hallie Palmer is in college now, and Bernard, her former legal guardian and go-to guy for crepes suzettes, has suddenly appeared during final exams. He's hysterical that his relationship has gone down in flames and wants to enlist Hallie in a scheme to win Gil back. So Hallie returns to Cosgrove County, Ohio, the setting of Pedersen's award-winning novel BEGINNER'S LUCK, and resumes her job as live-in yard person for the summer, and also for some damage control. The eccentric Stockton clan is back in full force, including Bernard's socially and sexually progressive mother Olivia, her hot-tempered Italian lover Ottavio who is desperate for a wedding, and Rocky, the chimpanzee who is one Singapore Sling away from needing an AA meeting for primates. Around town, folks assume that since Hallie didn't end up doing time after her previous escapades, she now has time for all of their problems, and thus begins a series of uproarious adventures. Only the truth is that Hallie has plenty of troubles of her own, from paying a big tuition bill to deciding if her new boyfriend is THE ONE. Hallie tackles the issue of money by reacquainting herself with the local bookie, Cappy, while the second question is further complicated by the reappearance of her old boyfriend Craig. As Hallie navigates life's unexpected paths of games lost and love found, she soon discovers that money and love can occasionally cause a lot more problems than they solve. Yet with friends, family, and a place to call home, your heart's desire is oftentimes right around the corner...if you're willing to take a chance on life.

"Funny, tender, and poignant, Heartís Desire should appeal to a wide range of readers."

"Prepare to fall in love again because Laura Pedersen is giving you your 'Heart's Desire' by bringing back Hallie Palmer and her entire endearing crew. In a story as wise as it is witty, Pedersen captures the joy of love found, the ache of love lost, and how friends can get you through it all - win or lose."
-Sarah Bird,
author of
The Yokata Officer's Club

"Smart, funny, and chocked with fascinating tidbits and surprises, Heartís Desire delivers on the promise of its title. Laura Pedersenís lively imagination has created a cast of zany characters and an unforgettable heroine in Hallie Palmer whose honesty, sweet nature, and witticisms make this novel an enchanting read. I canít wait for the sequel!"
-Bev Marshall,
author of
Right as Rain
Walking Through Shadows

"Laura Pedersenís newest work is as fresh and inviting as iced tea in August. If only I had friends as sweet and quirky and unpredictable as the characters in Heartís Desire!"
-Ad Hudler,
author of
Southern Living

Pedersen has written a bright, tinkling charm bracelet of a book, ornamented with the odd grace of her quirky, mismatched characters and her own brand of wry, tender humor.
-Yona Zeldis McDonough,
author of
In Dahlia's Wake