There are certain things I expect from Christian Fiction. Good writing, an interesting premise and plot, a touching story (not always heartwarming, but definitely touching), and characters at different places in their faith or lack thereof. I had heard praise being heaped on Irene Hannon's novel that preceded this one, so I had high hopes that all of these expectations would be met. They were.
While we are still given the usual for romance - beautiful heroine and hunky hero fighting their attraction, for a while and then unsuccessfully, because of their past/circumstances - what I really enjoyed was seeing them helping others. This is a romance novel, but it is also wrapped around stories of hope lost and restored. For me, the lasting impression will be of people whose lives take unexpected turns, forcing them to reassess their values, their thinking, and the direction that they thought their lives should go.
While a few of the secondary characters (including a local seal with bad timing) feel like they are/will be reoccurring in the Hope Harbor novels, Eleanor and especially Luis are much of what gives this story much of its depth. While the resolution of their story-lines may not be unexpected, having them roll out at a realistic pace is gratifying.
Also gratifying is seeing a portrayal of people of different races and denominations, and at different places in their faith, interact in primarily positive ways. Self reflection and realization, of faith and of prejudices, are handled in a way that feels straightforward and genuine.
Recommended for those who enjoy clean romances that feel a bit authentic and subtly go a little deeper.
This review was originally posted on bookworlder.wordpress.com
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed 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.”