Monday, March 9, 2015

Barely Dead in the Ground

Love Unexpected
Jody Hedlund
Beacons of Hope 1

All Emma Chambers ever wanted was a home, but when her steamboat sinks just outside Presque Isle, she’s left destitute and with no place to stay.

An unlikely solution arises when the lighthouse keeper arrives in town. He’s just lost his wife and is having a difficult time caring for his child. So a traveling preacher gets the idea that the keeper and Emma might be the answer to each other’s dilemma. After a hasty marriage, she finds herself heading to the lighthouse with this handsome but quiet stranger. Nothing in her aimless life, though, has prepared her for parenting a rambunctious toddler, as well as managing a household.

Emma soon suspects Patrick may be hiding something from her, and then she hears a disturbing rumor about the circumstances surrounding his late wife’s death. It seems as if her wish for a home and family of her own could end up leading her once more into turbulent waters.

Discussion Point the First: When you read the blurb, and it says Patrick just lost his wife, you think maybe two weeks to two months ago. Right? How about not? Emma stumbles upon her FUNERAL. When they mean just, they aren’t stretching. It kind of took me back, I mean his new-to-be wife was talking to his two-year-old while they were putting dirt over the coffin. Just wow.

I really enjoyed the characters and their dynamics. Emma seemed pretty chill throughout the majority of the book. She spent a good portion of her young years in Ireland during the starving period. She witnessed a lot of crimes and the fact that it became normal is apparent. She gets stressed when it comes down to toddlers behavior though. She has one younger brother, but she never had any practice taking care of little ones. Her problems with obedience are both amusing and annoying. Amusing because she has such problems, and annoying because she can’t control him. Just discipline him. He is a child. On the bright side it isn't one of those annoying stories where she gets no support from Patrick when it comes to toddler. He supports her, and I loved it.

The history surrounding the lighthouse and living on Lake Michigan was really engrossing. It made me curious about how a lighthouse is actually run, and gave me enough information that I didn’t feel the need to look it up, or put it down for a break. It brought to mind the new version of Yours, Mine, and Ours, when the wife woos her husband with their lighthouse. It also punctured my Boxcar children dreams. Oh well. Aside from the popping of dreams it was absolutely wonderful, and I’ve already reread it twice. I cannot wait for the next book in the series to come out (I think sometime later this year).

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.  Enjoy reading!

Don’t forget to click on the cover to read an excerpt.

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