On his way to interview for a position at a church in the Piney Woods of Texas, Crockett Archer can't believe it when he's forced off the train by an outlaw and presented to the man's daughter as the preacher she requested for her birthday. He's determined to escape--which would be much easier if he could stop thinking about Joanna Robbins and her unexpected request.
For months, Joanna had prayed for a minister. A man to breathe life back into the abandoned church at the heart of her community. A man to assist her in fulfilling a promise to her dying mother. But just when it seems her prayers have been answered, it turns out the parson is there against his will and has dreams of his own calling him elsewhere. Is there any way she can convince Crockett he ended up right where he was supposed to be?
Stealing the Preacher is a continuation of Karen Witemeyer's last book Short Straw Bride. Crockett the second oldest, has finally struck out and is becoming a preacher. In Short Straw Bride, Crockett has moved from the farm and gotten a mentor who has secured him an interview with a parish. In the first book, we only get a peek at who Crockett is. We see a little winking and teasing and talking out of turn, but that is about it.
In Stealing the Preacher we see a hardworking cowboy turned into a minister, and the incredulity that comes when people realize he is a minister. This really puts the oddness of his position into perspective for us. We don't think anything of a minister answering his calling, no matter what his background. Cowboys in Texas did not become ministers, and Crockett's transformation from cowboy to minister is exceptionally portrayed.
Karen Witemeyer dangles the blooming romance in front of our faces until we have no choice but to positively groan in desperation. I loved the way she tied in the most horrid woman in all the realms into the happy plot line.
This book in particular, my girl-friend and I both felt Silas' character maturity deeply. (Silas is Joanna's ex-outlaw father- who stole Crockett). We were absolutely touched at how Karen weaved in the reality of the struggle that people face. We could relate to it personally. As someone who reads books in such a short time, it is really hard to emotionally connect with anyone, but Silas just spoke to me. I could see so many qualities in him that I could see in my own father (the over protectiveness) I almost wept. Which really is hard for me. This book definitely sent me into tears. However, I was also sent into peals of laughter. This book is really an amazing find, and I absolutely cannot wait for the next one (hopefully soon!)
Have an absolutely amazing day, and enjoy your book!
P.S. Bethany House & Karen made a book trailer. I generally think them irrelevant, but this one was just so cute, so you can see it here: