Friday, May 3, 2013

Review: Courage to Hope

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars! :) 

I'm not a huge fan of historical fiction. I don't read very much of it, so I wasn't sure if I'd like this book or not. But I loved it; it was historically accurate, inspirational, and absolutely charming. 

Author's Website

Cara's got quite a reputation in her little town. People don't think highly of her, due to her late husband's bad manners and ill-temper. She's misunderstood and mistreated, although that doesn't stop her from doing what she needs to do for her and her children. She stubbornly and worriedly accepts her friend, Doc's, advice about hiring a farmhand so she can turn a harvest this year and keep her farm. But with her reputation and her fear that she'd hire a man just like her late husband, she has a hard time finding someone who will accept her need for help. 

Adam is one of those honorable and kind men that, in this day and age, are very hard to find (discounting the fact that this is historical fiction and people were different then). It's hard for Cara to trust him, and it's hard for Adam to see her do so much without any support except for her eldest child, Remmie, who is only five. And he's more worried about what Belinda thinks than what his family or friends have to say about his deciding to take on the job. He's determined to do more with his life than work the farm and obey his father. 

They are both very skittish around each other, and over the months, they become friends. With Adam's help, the harvest is plentiful and just what they needed. It gives Cara hope that the future will be bright for her and the children.

This book was well researched and well thought out. The historical aspects, the way they talked and the way they lived, were spot on and wonderful to read about. The way the author told the story and brought out the history of that time period painted a pretty picture in my head and kept me interested. It is also inspirational, showing infinite courage in a time where women were undervalued and under-appreciated. There was a religious aspect to the book, but I did not feel overwhelmed with devotions and or felt like I was being preached to by the author's writing. It seemed she just wanted to create a story with a courageous young woman whom girls today can look up to. No matter what life threw at Cara, she came out stronger and never gave up. I loved the characters dearly, and I cannot wait to read more about them in the second book, Courage to Trust

I love detailed books; I love authors who can weave a great plot around colorful scenery. But sometimes the details drew away from the story and overshadowed the characters' interactions and conversations. But other than that, the book was wonderful. 

 I truly, and undeniably, love this series. 

(Side-note: the author is my mother, and I'm very good at proof-reading, so I wanted to help her edit the book). This is an honest review, and don't think I'm being biased. When it comes to book reviews, I go for full-out honesty.