Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Sixty Acres and a Bride by Regina Jennings

I had heard a lot of buzz about this book, so I was excited to read it for review. Let’s begin with the summary:

With nothing to their names, young widow Rosa Garner and her mother-in-law return to Texas and the family ranch. Only now the county is demanding back taxes and the women have only three months to pay.

Though facing eviction, Rosa can't keep herself from falling in love with the countryside and the wonderful extended family who want only her best. Learning the American customs is not easy, however, and this beautiful young widow can't help but catch wandering eyes. Where some offer help with dangerous strings attached, only one man seems honorable. But when Weston Garner, still grieving his own lost love, is unprepared to give his heart, to what lengths will Rosa go to save her future?

And now, my review:

This story is obviously loosely based on the story of Naomi, Ruth, and Boaz in the Bible. As I began reading, I expected a romantic storyline to keep me engaged. When that didn’t immediately happen, and I found multiple editorial errors, I lost interest and stopped reading for a while. The back cover copy indicates the story isn’t categorized as a romance, but I was hoping for one given the potential in Ruth’s story in the Bible. 

Then, a few weeks later, I felt a nudge to give it another try. I still found a lot of errors, but knowing readers (not editors) are the target audience, I wanted to share how I found the story.  The story is very well crafted. The author included some wise, well-worded prose that helped explain the buzz I’d been hearing/seeing about this book. 

I am glad I finished this novel. There was a lot of originality in the story. The author had a good handle on what it must have like for Ruth to enter a new culture and feel compelled to prove herself. Very believable and I sympathized with her. I liked the character of Weston as well, and a romance most assuredly developed between the two. I think because the book didn’t follow everything the formula dictates, the novel was designated as historical fiction, rather than historical romance. But if lovers of romance will stick with it, they’ll find much romance to enjoy.

Readers who don’t mind head-hopping and/or out of place (time setting) jargon will enjoy this book. The story itself is strong.

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