Wednesday, December 14, 2011

What I Read Wednesday: From This Day Forward by Margaret Daley

From the Cover:
Rachel doesn't believe her situation could get any worse—until she meets her new neighbor.

Shortly after the War of 1812, newly widowed immigrant Rachel Gordon arrives in Charleston, South Carolina.  Though frightened and alone, she is determined to establish a home for herself and her child in a new country.

Weary from fighting a war against England, Nathan Stuart is content with his self-imposed isolation.  But then desperate circumstances force him to care for his lovely, helpless—and very English—new neighbor.  Can the battle-scarred American physician who comes to Rachel’s rescue also heal her wounded heart?

Andrea’s Take:
All the books I’ve reviewed for influencing purposes to date have been written by authors entirely new to me. This book is not. I’ve read several books by Margaret Daley. All of them were category romances from Love Inspired, and all were contemporary stories. She has also written many romantic suspense novels for Love Inspired Suspense. I’ve heard that it can be a struggle for an author to switch between genres and/or time periods. If it was for Margaret Daley, she conquered it thoroughly. In From This Day Forward. Margaret Daley proves to possess a versatile talent for storytelling in any time and setting.

From This Day Forward is a story of understanding and submitting to God's call on your life.  Rachel understands her calling to be a particular thing at the beginning of the story, with good reason. The circumstances she is in would probably lead anyone to believe what she does.  She trusts God and acts according to his calling as she understands it. When it seems that God has something a bit different in mind, Rachel wears herself to a frazzle for a while before she fully catches on.  

Nathan is well aware of God's calling on his life and is running from it - also understandably so. The healing nature God gave him is battered and bruised by the horrors of war, and he needs time to heal.  He also runs from conflict within his family. Circumstances force him to face both of these issues all at once

When they both stop insisting--to God and one another--that they know best, they find God's true plans for them are better than either of them ever could have imagined. 

My favorite supporting character is George Baker. After an exciting introduction to Rachel and her household, the backwoods neighbor takes in stride everything they throw at him. He proves to be an invaluable source of support and a dear friend.

Many things make this book a truly good read. Both main characters are sympathetic. I really did ache and rejoice with them. It is set in a time period with which I am woefully unfamiliar, and I benefited from the fruits of Ms. Daley's research efforts. The story line followed a natural yet unpredictable path.  These are all very good things to my way of thinking.

In fact, I recommend this book so strongly I'm going to give it away to one lucky reader. 

Please return tomorrow for an interview with the author Margaret Daley. The comment section will be open for entries.

Though I received this book free from Summerside Press for influencing purposes, the opinions expressed herein are my own and they are genuine.

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