Friday, March 19, 2010
Review: Paper Roses
Author: Amanda Cabot
Genre: Fiction, Christian Fiction, Historical Fiction
Pub Date: January 2009, Revell (Baker Publishing Group)
Paperback, 375 pages
Book Source: Purchased from Amazon.com
The future stretches out in front of Sarah Dobbs like the pure blue Texas sky. Leaving the past behind in Philadelphia, mail-order bride Sarah arrives in San Antonio ready to greet her groom, Austin Canfield, a man she has never met but whose letters have won her heart from afar. But there is one problem--he has died. And Sarah cannot go back East.
As Sarah tries to reconcile herself to a future that is drastically changed, Austin's brother, Clay, struggles with his own muddled plans. Though he dislikes working on the family ranch and longs for a different life, Clay is driven to avenge his brother's death. But something between them is growing and neither Clay nor Sarah is ready to admit it.
I actually read this book a couple of weeks ago and in a departure from my usual habit, I have neglected writing up the review for quite some time. To tell you the truth, I'm not really sure why. It's not that I didn't like the book, though it certainly wasn't necessarily a favorite, either. There were many aspects I enjoyed, in fact--including the romance between Sarah and Clay, the historical setting in the Texas frontier, and the mix of mystery and historical, Christian fiction.
As is typically the case, there were aspects to the Christian fiction that did not resonate with me, but on the positive side Cabot did not dwell on these as some authors of Christian fiction do. I did not find this book to be as preachy as some Christian fiction can be, which is another plus as far as I'm concerned. It was enjoyable to read the romance between Sarah and Clay unfold, though at times I wished there was a bit more excitement to their courtship. There was at least an added element of suspense and excitement with the mystery of Austin's murder, as well as a thief who strikes all over town. Cabot effectively works the mystery into the rest of the story and manages to tie all of the pieces together. My main complaint about that was that the story did have some slow points and the book might have benefited from having 75-100 pages cut out to improve the pacing a big.
Overall Paper Roses was a pleasant read. Probably not a must-read, but if you're looking for something relatively light with a positive message, you might pick this one up.
Other reviews of Paper Roses:
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