Monday, October 17, 2011
Belonging - Robin Lee Hatcher
Robin Lee Hatcher does it again with another fabulous novel in Belonging, book number one in her new "Where the Heart Lives" series. When I was offered the chance to review this novel I jumped on it, as Robin Lee Hatcher is one of my favorite historical Christian fiction writers. Her characters are charming and honest, drawing you into their stories as her gracefully written narrative transports you to another time and place. In Belonging we are taken to 19th century Idaho on a journey filled with emotional and spiritual revelations that speak to God's promise to work all things together for his good purposes.
The story revolves around Felicia Kristofferson, a teacher looking for a fresh start in the dusty desert town of Frenchman's Bluff. Orphaned as a child and separated from her brother and sister, Felicia has not had the influence of love and family in her life. Still, her faith is sure, and she believes God has sent her to Idaho so that she may provide the children with a strong education. Felicia just has to win over the widowed general store owner, Colin Murphy, who is certain she has come only to find a husband, not to be the teacher his daughter Charity so desperately needs. As their relationship grows over a mutual concern for Charity, the merchant owner finds that he is the one who is falling for the teacher.
This is such a sweet book, I loved reading every word of it. Belonging is a wholesome love story that speaks biblical truths and paints a bright hope and future for its characters. The subtle layering of story lines keeps the plot moving along and provides some wonderfully surprising elements. Robin Lee Hatcher creates the world of Frenchman's Bluff with charm and ingenuity. From the school house to the townspeople, everything is written with an emotional validity that goes straight to the heart. I especially enjoyed Felicia's back story of being separated from her siblings on the orphan train and look forward to exploring that connection in future novels from this series. Hopefully book #2 will be arriving soon!
Disclosure of Material: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Zondervan. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.