"Spring For Susannah"

This review is for the novel "Spring For Susannah" by Catherine Richmond.

Susannah is a young woman who is left alone in the world when both of her parents pass on. She is left with virtually no money to her name and a heavy ton of emotional baggage.

She is like a shy little bird that has never been able to break free of her shell. She has never had any suitors call on her and she was taught to never voice her opinions and was not given any affection as a child. Her mother and father chose to sleep in separate bedrooms and she was, of course, an only child. None of this exactly led to a chatty, trusting and loving person by adulthood.

Susannah had been writing to her pastor's brother, who lives out in the Dakota Territory, before her parents died. He was lonely and needed a bride, so the natural course of action for him was to write to his brother and see if he knew of a marriageable women, who would be suitable for him as his new bride. Even though she only wrote to him because she figured he was writing to several women and would never actually choose her, Susannah turns out to be just what Jesse needs. And unbeknownst to her, he is exactly what she happens to need.

When she is left alone with no family in the world to call her own and only just enough money to buy her train tickets, with a tiny bit left over, she makes the very long journey to join Jesse in Dakota.

Before she departs the city for the Dakota Territory, Jesse's brother marries them using a stand-in for Jesse, as there are no pastors where she is heading.

Becoming a mail order bride is not exactly what Susannah would have chosen, had she been able to do something different, but it is the lot that has befallen her.

She is, however, blessed with a husband who is very understanding of her needs. He allows her to take her time in coming out of her shell, even though it is frustrating for him. He is quite the talker and doesn't understand why she won't talk to him the way he talks to her. He doesn't understand the fact of having grown up in such a strict household and not being shown love or affection. He has grown up in a large family and is happy and exuberant most of the time.

Living in a dirt house and trying to fight grasshoppers and harsh winters is not an easy task but Susannah manages better than one might expect.

As Susannah begins to allow herself to have opinions, to feel love for another person and let herself confide in Jesse about the painful attack she endured before leaving the city, she comes into her own and begins to blossom and become the women that Jesse loves and knows she can be.

I think she even ends up surprising herself a little bit toward the end.

Her husband is more than a little glad when he realizes that his new wife knows about doctoring animals since her father was a veterinarian. He taught her the things he knew even though her mother didn't approve of it. It turns out to be a wonderful thing considering the fact that she and her new husband only have one neighbor and no doctors or vets anywhere close to them. Jesse realizes just how skilled his new wife is when his ox goes into labor with twins and is having a difficult birth. If not for the blessing of his new wife, the ox and both babies would most likely not have made it.

Working with animals like that was much frowned upon where she came from and not something that would have earned her praise back in the city, but Jesse could just about bust the buttons off his shirt he is so proud of her. He encourages her to be herself and come into her own. No one has ever done that for her before and I think it is one of the things that eventually softens Susannah toward him.

I can't say to much more without giving away major story plots. I did enjoy the book and it certainly has its twist and turns but a few things bothered me about it. There were a couple of story points that didn't have the ends tied up at the ending of the book so I can only assume that there is a sequel? Either that or it was a poor planning for the ending in my opinion.

I think you will enjoy watching Susannah blossom into a strong and capable woman and the book is entertaining and interesting.

Has anyone else read this? What are your thoughts?

Happy Monday!

*Note* I received this book for free through the Booksneeze book review bloggers program in exchange for writing a review about it. I am not required to write a positive review. Any opinions expressed are my own and they are sincere.

Bring A Surfboard For Making Waves

This review is for the novel "Making Waves by Lorna Seilstad.

So this book has the distinction of being the very first book that I read on my kindle app for my IPhone. I was skeptical about reading a book on my IPhone but found it comes in really handy if I want to read in bed and the light would bother hubs, but let's get back to the review! :o)

Right off the bat, the cover of the book caught my attention. I adore the beach and loved the bright colors that were displayed in the cover choice.

Marguerite Westing is our title character and she is definitely fun to read about. A lot of books that I have read in my life have been predictable. Pretty much you almost know what's going to happen before it does and who is going to end up together in the end.

While this novel did have its somewhat predictable side, cause who are we kidding, that's just the way it is with romance novels, it was a truly interesting read.

Parts of it kept me on the edge of my seat and definitely kept me flicking to the next page ;)

It is a historical novel set in 1895 and most of their time is spent at Lake Manawa "camping out". Which means, feather beds and hired help for them.

Marguerite pushes the bounds of convention at every chance she gets. She bicycles wearing her special cycling outfits, she longs to learn to sail around the lake, which is considered highly improper for a lady, and she is a member of the suffrage movement.
Add into this mix an indulgent father, an ominous suitor, who has a most annoying mustache, and a harsh mother who pushes said unwanted suitor on Marguerite and you have the makings of a great story.

It's all there in this book, adventure, sorrow and disappointment, intrigue and very interesting characters.

You thrill with Marguerite as she experiences sailing on the lake for the first time, you cringe when she tells a lie, you're sad when she is bitterly disappointed by her favorite person in the world, and triumphant when it all turns out in the end.

This book will remind you that everyone has sorrows and not everything is always as it seems in the end.

Hope your Monday is going swimmingly :O)

Thought for the day~ Real and True Friends will be there no matter what. Kind of like mail delivery...neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow ;)

~Too Rich For A Bride~

This review is for the novel "To Rich For A Bride" by Mona Hodgson.

This appears to be the second book in a series, the first book is called "Two Brides Too Many".
I honestly felt a little lost and behind because I did not read that book before this one. I can see where this book can be a standalone book but I would have connected better with the sisters and this novel if I had read the first one beforehand.

This novel follows Ida Sinclair, who is more than a little ambitious in her career plans. Especially given the fact that the time she lives in is clearly dominated by men. Women are not exactly welcomed into the career world but that is not something that will deter Ida. She has grown up with ambition and wanting to make money, as well as a name for herself and no one, especially a narrow minded man at that, will stand in her way. Pave way for feminism, Ida wants to be the spokeswoman!

After finishing her business schooling two weeks early, due'll see, Ida heads off to join her two sisters Kat and Nell in a mining town in Colorado.

Things are a bit more rustic than where she comes from but she easily adapts, especially with her new job under a woman who has already proven herself to be a success in the business world. Not an easy feat in that day and age.

Business, money and success are Ida's primary concerns, never mind the fact that two men seem to take an instant interest in her the same day she arrives in this rough and tumble town.
She has no time for men and the distraction of it all when there is a world to conquer.

Ida, however, has a few things to learn about what's right, when to be still and listen and how exactly she is supposed to guard her heart, when unknowingly to her, God happens to be at work in her future and life.

I like that the author included bits about Ida's sisters, such as one sister writing articles for Harper's Bazaar, but I also wish she had included a bit of back story on each one of them for us readers who did not read their tale in the first book. They are both married and from the hints given it seems their story is an interesting one as to how they came to be married to the men that share their lives.

I did enjoy this book somewhat, however I felt the story was a little rushed when it comes to Ida and one of the men as well as her career. To me it just seemed like it all fit into a tidy package far to quickly. Odd feeling I know but that was my main feeling toward the end of the book...rushed.
While I applaud the author in the writing of this book and the story was interesting, it just wasn't my favorite read.

Have any of you read this book? What are your thoughts?

Here's wishing you a lovely day!

P.S. If you wouldn't mind, please take a moment and rank my review. I love to write them and enjoy getting your reaction as well. Thanks so much!

*Note* I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group in exchange for posting a review about it. I am not required to post a positive review. Any opinions expressed are my own and they are sincere.


Beyond All Measure

This review is for "Beyond All Measure" by Dorothy Love.

This is the first book that I have read by Dorothy Love and I actually greatly enjoyed reading it.

Ada Wentworth is a young lady that comes from a well-to-do family in Boston. Tragic circumstances have taken her from the top of society in Boston down to the hills of Hickory Ridge Tennessee to be an older ladies companion. She has secured the position through an advertisement in the paper and has no idea what awaits her down in Tennessee. All she knows is that she is penniless, heartbroken and alone.

She is in for quite a shock when instead of the current ladies companion picking her up at the train station, a handsome, strapping young man arrives to cart her off to her destination.

Desperation is what drove her choices but hope and faith will be what sustains her.

I wasn't sure what to expect as I don't read historical fiction that much but this book was a delight. It kept me up far to late one night because I couldn't seem to put it down.

Be sure to check out Beyond All Measure. I look forward to reading other things by Dorothy Love and encourage you to do the same.

What are you reading lately?

*Note* I received this book for free through the Booksneeze book review bloggers program in exchange for writing a review about it. I am not required to write a positive review. Any opinions expressed are my own and they are sincere.