Thursday, September 05, 2013

A Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund - a book review

As with many Christian romance novels, this one follows a predictable pattern. The heroine, Annalisa, is left widowed and penniless with a child to support and another on the way. In comes the handsome hero, Carl, ready to save the day. The difference with this book is how the author tells the story. She makes you feel like you’re a part of the story with her realistic descriptions of the surroundings and customs of the day.

From the publisher’s website:

Michigan, 1880
Annalisa Werner's hope for a fairy tale love is over. Her husband failed her in every way and now his death has left her with few options to save the family farm. She needs a plentiful harvest. That, and a husband to help bring it in. Someone strong, dependable. That’ll be enough. A marriage for love...that's something she's given up on.
So her father sends a letter to his brother in the Old Country, asking him to find Annalisa a groom.

Then a man appears: Carl Richards, from their home country of Germany and a former schoolteacher--or so he says. He's looking for work and will serve on the farm until her husband arrives.

With time running out, she accepts his help, but there's more to this man than he's admitting. He's also gentle, kind, charming--unlike any man she's ever known. But even as Carl is shining light into the darkness of her heart, she knows her true groom may arrive any day.”
This story has it’s twists and turns and secrets. The characters are plentiful but not hard to keep track of and you get to grow along with them. Annalisa’s daughter is completely charming and you can’t help but love her. However, she seems very advanced for a two year old. Not very believable but still cute! The other thing I found a little disconcerting was the amount of physical intimacy between Annalisa and Carl. It made me a little uncomfortable with them not being married. It was still clean but went a little farther than I was expecting.

The characters rely deeply on their faith but the author isn’t ‘preachy’ about it. This is a story about history, customs, social issues like abuse and gambling, and Biblical principle of marriage.

The author includes, at the end of the book, a historical look at the events that she uses in the story.

I enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more from this author.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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