The time is just after the end of the Civil War in Wabash, Indiana. Sarah had waited for Rand, the only man she had ever loved. But then Rand's family had received the letter that Rand was dead. Sarah had been devastated. She continued to spurn the affections of Ben, a wealthy man who had been after her for years.
Five months had passed since Rand's death notice had been received. Even though Sarah wanted to believe it was a mistake, it looked like it was true. She would never see Rand again, on this earth at least. Sarah's father was ill and had been told he did not have long to live. Her brother pressed for Sarah to accept Ben's proposal. Sarah's mother had died when Sarah was young and she had raised her younger brother. Now, with her father soon dying and her older brother wanting to be rid of her, she finally gave in to Ben. He promised to provide a good home for her younger brother, something she needed from a husband. Even though she knew she did not love him, what else could she do?
But Rand is very far from dead. He is on his way home, wondering why none of the letters he had written while in the hospital had been answered. He had even sent one home with Ben. Surely Sarah was still waiting for him!
This is the first episode in a serialized novel. Coble wrote the novel years ago and it is now being issued in a collection of novellas. New episodes will be released each month.
This episode, about 90 pages long, does a great job of setting up the story line. We know there is great affection between Sarah and Rand but when he returns to find her preparing for a marriage, he is shocked and hurt. He has a hard time understanding why Sarah could so quickly turn to another man.
But we totally understand Sarah's dilemma. She has a younger brother to care for and her older brother is not a very likable man. Ben is very nice to her, and though she does not love him, he would at least provide a home for her and her brother. We can imagine her confusion when Rand shows up, very alive. When Rand tells her of Ben's treacherous ways, she can hardly believe it. Before this episode ends, it looks like there is just too much hurt between Rand and Sarah for them to ever see their way to be together.
We are left hanging, waiting for the next episode in the series. Besides the hurt and confusion between Rand and Sarah, Ben is very angry. His threat of revenge brings an element of danger to the situation. I'm waiting for the next installment.
I am taking part in a blog tour of this novella and you can read other reviews here.
Colleen Coble has sold over 2 million novels worldwide. She and her husband live in Indiana. Find out more at http://colleencoble.com/.
Thomas Nelson, 128 pages. You can buy a copy here.
I received a complimentary egalley of this book through Litfuse for the purpose of an independent and honest review.