Saturday, August 17, 2013

A Noble Groom

Title: A Noble Groom
Author: Jody Hedlund
Publisher: Bethany House
Pages: 363
ISBN: 978-0-7642-1047-1

Synopsis:
Michigan, 1880

Annalisa Werner's hope for a fairy tale love is over. Her husband failed her in every way and now his death has left her with few options to save the family farm. She needs a plentiful harvest. That, and a husband to help bring it in. Someone strong, dependable. That'll be enough. A marriage for love...that's something she's given up on.

So her father sends a letter to his brother in the Old Country, asking him to find Annalisa a groom.

 Then a man appears: Carl Richards, from their home country of Germany and a former schoolteacher—or so he says. He's looking for work and will serve on the farm until her husband arrives.

 With time running out, she accepts his help, but there's more to this man than he's admitting. He's also gentle, kind, charming—unlike any man she's ever known. But even as Carl is shining light into the darkness of her heart, she knows her true groom may arrive any day.
Review:

Jody Hedlund is becoming one of my favorite authors. A Noble Groom is such a moving story. The detail to surroundings, the character depth, and realism in the story is just phenomenal. The research that has gone into A Noble Groom just shines through and helps pull you further into the the lives of Carl Richards and Annalisa Werner.

For me, there has always been a desire to go back into the 1800's. Each book I have read has presented it in a way, that it seems like a dream. A Noble Groom brings you into a real world, into the finical, emotional, and physical problems that people faced in the time, but not that just that, but also the cultural differences of the time and the communities of people that built up together to support each other and to keep a bit of their old home with them.

Annalisa Werner has always had a love for fairy tales, the love for them are still there, but not as strong as what they once were, when she realizes, married life isn't like that present in her stories. After three years of marriage, life has been hard. Married to a man that doesn't show any concern but for himself and for his drinking, has left Annalisa fearful for the up and coming year. The last year of the loan is due for the farm and there is no money to be had on hand. Hans, Annalisa husband spends it on liquor and on gambling. Annalisa tries to hide and save what money that can be made, but Hans finds it and gambles it away. On a day in the fall, Annalisa finds her Hans dead in the field, murdered. As much as she hated what he did, she never wished him dead. Now, with the loan looming over head, the care for her little daughter, and the farm, Annalisa's father says that the only way to make it is for her to get married again. Her father writes a letter to his family back and Germany to see if there is family there that wants to come to America to marry and have a farm. And all Annalisa can do is wait and listen to her father.

Annalisa battles so much in A Noble Groom. She is not a woman who doesn't trusts very easily after her time of being married to a man who was selfish and stripped his family of having any type of stability. Even though Annalisa knows that fairy tales aren't true, she does still hope for a better future for her daughter and continues to tell the tales to her. And even though, Annalisa has been a married woman, she still deals with being under the rule of her father, whose main concern is to see her secure, whether married to stranger or someone she knows, it doesn't matter to him.

When Carl Richards shows up to Annalisa's house in March the following year, she doesn't know what to make of him. All she cares about is take care of the loan and that he doesn't steal what little of savings she has. Carl proves that even though he isn't the best at farm work, he is good at showing Annalisa that not all men are about themselves. That there are men out there, that do appreciate the work that women do and care about what women have to say. Carl is also my new favorite guy. He is completely swoon worthy, if I was prone to swooning. 

Carl is not who he says he is though. Yes, he is a teacher on the run from the law in Germany for a crime he didn't commit, but he is also a Baron's son. The Baron who was over Annalisa's family in Saxony, who caused Annalisa's older brother's death in the mines. The bitterness that runs in Annalisa's family runs deep and Carl knows that if they knew his true identity his life would be in danger.

I really enjoyed A Noble Groom. It is real, but also beautifully written. I will say as a word of warning to people who are at little uneasy with domestic violence, there is some in this story, but it isn't blatant. You mainly read the after effects of it, but don't let it stop you from reading this story.

Too Read!
5 out of 5


2 comments:

Kara said...

Oooo. You make it sound lovely, Kate! Sad to admit, but I haven't read any of Jody Hedlund's books yet. No particular reason, I just haven't. I keep hearing such wonderful things about her stories though, so I think I should change that soon. Great review! :)

Kate said...

I hadn't read anything by Jody Hedlund before The Doctor's Lady earlier this month. Her writing is great. All the positive buzz is right. :-) Thanks!