Title: Love Unexpected
Author: Jody Hedlund
Series: Beacons of Hope, #1
Genre: Christian Historical fiction
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Received via NetGalley
All she's ever wanted was a home. But stranded at Presque Isle port after their steamboat sank, Emma Chambers and her brother, Ryan, couldn't be farther away from security. While Ryan at least can find work, Emma can't even find a place to stay. An unlikely solution arises when the lighthouse keeper, who recently lost his wife and is struggling to raise his young son, arrives in town. A traveling preacher believes they might be the answer to each others' problems, and after a hasty marriage, Emma is headed back to the lighthouse with this handsome but quiet stranger.
But nothing in her wandering life has prepared her for suddenly being asked to raise a child and keep a house. Struggling at every turn, Emma also suspects Patrick may be keeping something hidden from her. In town she hears whispers about strange circumstances surrounding his previous wife's death, and it seems as though Emma's answered prayer for a home and family may actually be something much more dangerous.
Back in January, when I was off from school, I had a Jody Hedlund binge-read. I don't know what happened, as I usually don't read this type of book. But I do enjoy Hedlund's books, and so also gave this one a try. And I did enjoy it.
I don't know, arranged/convenience marriages in books have always kind of fascinated me, I think because it's so not what we're used to. A part of me wonders if any of this would actually happen, but at least it's enjoyable to read about.
Emma just wants to marry and settle down, have a family. But her life has been one of wandering, never staying in one place long enough to attract suitors. When she and her brother are stranded, Emma has no place to stay and no way to earn a living. The solution? Marry this guy who is currently burying his wife, the lighthouse keeper with a young son. So, Emma goes with them, but she has no idea how to keep house, cook, or take care of a young child.
I loved Emma, and felt sorry for her at the same time. She was easy to relate to, and was very realistic. At the same time, caring for a 2-year-old is hard work, and she has no idea how to do it. She feels inadequate, and embarrassed that she can't do these simple things, and you feel for her and with her. But thankfully, Patrick is kind and used to taking care of everything anyway (can you imagine how bad of an idea this would be if Patrick wasn't nice?) and doesn't expect too much of her. Not to say that Emma was lazy, because she definitely wasn't.
There was a lot of suspense and mystery with this one as well. Trying to figure out exactly what Patrick is hiding and how everything ties together. I was definitely intrigued for the whole book, needing to know what happened next.
This was a great book. I loved the characters, and the story (and of course the little boy! He was the cutest.) It will definitely keep your interest, and you will fall in love with the story.
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