twice a bride by mona hodgson

I know, I know.  This is not the type of book I usually read and review.  You’ll have to bear with me.  A friend told me about “blogging for books” so I signed up to try it.  I thought I would have more options of things to choose from but I didn’t, so I found myself reading this book out of obligation, not a place I want to be.  But I said I would read and review it, so here it is, and the disclaimer to go with it…

“I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.”

This book is the forth in a series of historical romances that revolve around the Sinclair family set in Colorado in the late 1800’s.  In this book, all four Sinclair sisters are happily married.  The protagonist is the sister-in-law of one of the Sinclair sisters.  She is widowed and her husband’s death has wreaked havoc on her life.  She was so depressed that she was in an asylum for a couple of years.  The book opens with the death of her father and everyone wondering how Willow is going to handle it.  Will she go over the deep end and end up in the asylum again?  No, of course not.  This is a historical romance so we know at some point we should have a happy ending.

The good: I was pleased with the plotting of the novel.  There were a lot of characters, plots and sub plots so it wasn’t as one-dimensional as some romances can be.  The author did a great job of setting up the plot lines and getting me interested in the characters.  Coming into the 4th in a series, I was still able to follow along with enough of the back story to know what was going on in this novel.

The not so good: The best plot lines resolved too quickly.  After this great set up, *poof* the story was over.  The author didn’t make the characters jump through many hoops before resolving the plot conflicts.  So my anticipation of what I expected to be an interesting story was over and left me unsatisfied. (I’m in it for the story, not the romance).

Theology: Typical Christian fiction

There were no surprises in the author’s theology.  Jesus came to save us.  When your life is messed up, that’s a great time to turn to Him and believe.  I know this sounds flippant because believing in Jesus – the Gospel – is the most important thing a person can do in their life, hands down.  But in a Christian novel with Christian readers, the conversion of the hero half-way through the story was predicable and cliche.

Willow’s conflict was with the sovereignty of God: “She wanted to believe everything happened for a reason–that God had a divine plan.”  I think this is pretty typical for many of us.  Life isn’t going the way we expected, in fact it might be going very poorly.  Do you trust that God is in control and that He has a plan for you?

One character struggled with a bad religious experience that turned him off to the church for good, causing him to think God didn’t care for him. “Maybe Trenton did need someone, but it wasn’t God.  “If G-God cared about me like you’ve said, things wou-would’ve been different.” (Trenton stammers).

The highlight of this book for me was in the author’s dedication section. She wrote:

“My prayer is that in whatever state you find yourself as you read, my stories will lead you to the Rock that is higher than you and I.  Higher than any heartbreak of success.  Higher than any circumstance.”

Amen, sister!

Rating:  G

Family friendly.  A safe read for anyone but it will appeal most to romantics.

Social issues:

Because the book is historical, it mainly deals with the role of women inside and outside the home at the turn of the century (1900’s, not 2000’s). 🙂

Twice A Bride is a better-than-I-expected historical romance.  I liked the plot lines but hated that the story ended so quickly and neatly.  If you mainly read romance novels, I think you would enjoy this one.

Want to know more?  Here are some links


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