Book Review, February, 2022

Welcome to my first book review blog post!


I'll be releasing one book review, Lord willing, every even month of the year on the 3rd Friday of the month. With only 6 spots a year and as avid reader, I have a feeling this will prove problematic as to which of the many, many books I've read that I want to review.

1) The Nature of a Lady - Roseanna M. White (roseannamwhite.com)

What it is:

It's my favourite kind of book, a Christian, historical romance. It's set in 1906 England and the Isles of Scilly. It's deep third person POV and has three POVs instead of the more typical two. The main heroine, Elizabeth, is lovely in nature but not in appearance and is a lonely, nerdy daughter of an earl. The hero, Oliver, is the son of a gentleman who happens to be a vicar as well; he would be the social equivalent of an Elizabeth Bennet, a nobody to nobility. Then there is the conflicted maid Benna, who gets much less time than the other two, but I liked her the best. There is also a rather brief 4th POV in the prologue, but that's just to set up the pirate treasure plot.


What drew me initially to the book:

I've borrowed some of Roseanna M White's books set in the early 1900s from my library. Some were hits and others misses for plot/content. However, through all of them, her writing style and technique was excellent. So I thought to give this one a go. I'm glad I did. It's my favourite book she's written so far.


What I liked about the book:

It's immersive and fun. Roseanna has a great writing style with vivid word pictures and interesting characters. She also builds on a clear, well developed, but not overdone metaphor theme that resonates with the characters' interests (this one was plants).

That I can remember there wasn't any swearing or mention of swearing and no reformed rakes (some things I hadn't liked in a few of her other books). The Nature of a Lady was just a clean, enjoyable romance.

I loved the maid's story best, and after I satisfied my curiosity about her, I went back and got sucked into the two main characters again. So, yes, I did read it cover to cover. I just might have skipped some parts the first time to find out what happens to the maid... Bad habit, I know.

The place came alive with whispers of tales and people I could see in my mind almost as clearly as if they were standing next to me. Not just the main characters but the whole location.

If you find maps at the start of books a little intimidating (ahem, like me), don't worry. Roseanna explains everything well enough you don't need it, but I liked having the map just to get my bearings on the two main islands anyway. I didn't bother with the others.


What I didn't like:

The maid didn't get enough time for me (I think less than a fourth of the story was hers?). I wish she'd had her own book even if it was a short story, but that's mostly because I'm biased, having liked her so much.

The grandmother was prophetic at times. I found that weird.

The heroine believes in evolution; Elizabeth does come to believe in God. However, there is an annoying amount of time and attraction between her and vicar before she does. I don't like Christians being attracted to non-Christians in stories as a general rule because that often doesn't turn out very well for Christians in real-life.


In summary:

I give it 4.5 stars, almost perfect.

It's excellent writing with a bit of suspense, treasure hunting, and plenty of romance and friendship. It's a story about coming home, finding home, friendship outside of normal social classes, making peace with former enemies, and seeking God. I'm looking forward to the next book.


Alternatives:

Okay, I can't do it. I can't just recommend one book! If the book above doesn't tickle your fancy or you've already read it, try these other books I've read recently:


The Right Kind of Fool by Sarah Loudin Thomas - historical general fiction - reminded me of the book Christy, and I do mean the book not the movie. I liked reading things from the deaf boy's perspective. Some of the parents thoughts came across as too much information for me.

Back in the Saddle by Ruth Logan Herne - a contemporary, cowboy romance

Undercurrent of Secrets by Rachel Scott McDaniel - a dual time romance novel. I loved, loved the historical timeline; the contemporary was okay

The Amish Outcast's Holiday Return by Lacy Williams - not your normal Amish book!

The Texan's Truth by Jolene Navarro - a contemporary romance - I thought she handled a tough subject very well and didn't dwell on details I didn't want to know

Alexander and the Terrible Horrible Bad Day by Judith Viorst - yeah, I know not my typical reading, but someone made a quote from it. So, I read the kid's book to understand what they'd meant, and it was so much fun!

Stay in the Castle Series by Jerry Ross - 4 Christian fantasy novellas - the first book I read as a teenager. It had a big influence on my life. I just found the other 3 books in January.

Arctic Christmas Ambush by Sherri Shackelford - contemporary suspense

A Warrior's Heart by Misty M. Beller - historical romance


Did I warn you I read a lot?

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