|Aristocrat finds himself in love with a widowed farmer..|
Bethany House, April 2013
Review copy provided by the publisher, thank you!
Burton Book Review Rating:
Read my review of Jody's previous novel, Unending Devotion
Recently widowed Annalisa Werner has the feeling her husband was murdered but can't prove it. Alone with her young daughter in 1881 Michigan, she has six months left to finish raising the money needed to pay back the land contract her husband purchased, and the land is difficult to toil by herself. She needs a husband. With unmarried men scarce, her father sends a letter to his brother in the Old Country, asking him to find Annalisa a groom.
This was another enjoyable story from Jody Hedlund that is perfect for Christian historical romance fans. It tells the story of Annalisa and her toils with her land, and on the flip side we are treated to Carl von Reichart, a German nobleman on the run who finds himself in rural Michigan. Annalisa's extended German family take him in so that he can help Annalisa run the farm, but they really have no idea who he is. He is known as Carl Richards to them, and they all begin to appreciate him even though it is apparent he didn't grow up farming!
Annalisa was a wonderful character who was easy to root for after she had gone through so much. She was not a timid person, but she was forced to let the men make her choices because that's just the way things were with her German family. It was a way of life, and a bit of stark reality - until Carl Richards slowly begins to display traits that make Annalisa wonder if it would be possible to actually have a loving marriage full of mutual attraction. And could Carl be that man?
Carl has other places to be.. and there is another groom on the way for Annalisa! What odds does this pair have, especially being so many worlds apart? With a pleasantly evocative (and sometimes suspenseful) story line we watch their love story unfold through the author's swiftly paced story telling. The history of the German immigrants was an intriguing theme along with the harsh differences between the noble and the working classes set in Michigan during the 1880's. I loved how so much historical information, faith values and drama came together so easily in this story as Jody Hedlund is definitely proving to be a formidable name in her market. This was one of those reads that I had to force myself to put down in order to go to sleep at midnight!