Wednesday, August 20, 2014

A Grand Design by Amber Stockton

This novel is a simple romance. There is no intricate plot nor are there multi-layered characters. There is not much conflict nor suspenseful tension. It is just a sweet and uncomplicated story. It might be a suitable romance novel for young career aged women.

Alyssa returns to Mackinac Island, having won the trip in a contest. She and her family used to go every summer to visit her grandparents. Something happened one summer and when her father died, Alyssa never went back.

Alyssa is attracted to Scott, one of the men who ferried her and her friend Libbey to the island. Scott is attracted to her as well. Some healing of past pain must take place before a romance can blossom, however.

Alyssa is a young woman who has created walls around her because of a hurt she experienced in her teens. Scott is a patient young man who is willing to help Alyssa open herself up to a man again. Each of them have a strong faith, making the healing possible.

Stockton fell in love with Mackinac Island as a little girl after watching the film, Somewhere in Time (starring Jane Seymour and Christopher Reeve). While she has yet to actually visit the island, she gives readers a good sense of its history and the fascination people have with it. Her desire in writing novels is that people would finish a novel and have their faith strengthened, in this case, that all things do work together for good when you trust God and invite Him into all areas of your life.

This novel is one of The Quilts of Love series. Alyssa's grandmother is creating one and we do get to meet some of the interesting people of the island as Alyssa picks up squares for the quilt's composition. Interestingly enough, we know nothing of the type of quilt design nor what was on the individual squares.

This is a light novel of romance, the relationship budding to something serious in less than two weeks. Scott and Alyssa did not have long nor intense discussions and I got the impression they did not know each other well by the end of the novel. Scott's past was hinted at a couple of times but we never find out what that was all about.

I really felt there should have been more to this novel, more character development, a more involved plot, a greater explanation of the quilt and what the grandmother was trying to accomplish through creating it. Those who like simple escape romance might like this one.

I'm taking part in a blog tour of this book and you can read other reviews here.

You can read about the Quilts of Love series here.

Amber Stockton is an award-winning author and national speaker. She lives with her author husband and their two children in Colorado. You can find out more at http://amberstockton.com.

Abingdon Press, 208 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book through the Litfuse Publicity Group for the purpose of an independent and honest review.
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