Saturday, July 2, 2011

Beyond All Measure by Dorothy Love

Ada Wentworth is twenty six when she steps off the train in Hickory Ridge, Tennessee. All she has to her name is her trunk. She was glad the auctioneer hadn't taken it too. She didn't even have a proper mourning dress and mourning she was. The man she was expecting to marry had called off the engagement. She suspected her father had seen to it. Now, even her father was dead. He had been in debt so great the house in Boston and all the possessions had been sold.
The only hope Ada had now was a position in Hickory Ridge. She had responded to an advertisement for a companion to an older woman.
But the situation is not good. The woman, Miss Lillian, is a cantankerous old woman. Hickory Ridge is not Boston. It is just after the Civil War and many in the town are not welcoming to someone from the north. Ada cannot help but befriend some of the black children from the nearby “colored” settlement and her life is threatened.
Ada was hired by Wyatt Caldwell, nephew of Miss Lillian. Originally from Texas, he owns the local wood mill. His dream is to go back to Texas and raise Longhorns. Ada is attracted to Wyatt but she has been hurt so deeply she will not let him have her heart.
Ada is a strong woman. She has millinery skills and plans to supplement her income by making hats. She plans for a shop in the future.
When Miss Lillian dies, some in the town turn against Ada with a vengeance. While Wyatt can save Ada from physical danger, he cannot convince her to open her heart and marry him. With his aunt gone, there is no reason for him to stay so he sells the mill and makes arrangements to move to Texas.
Will Ada trust God or will she miss out on her opportunity for love?

Love has written a good romance. The Christian aspect is well done. Lillian and Wyatt are strong Christians and Ada reluctantly goes to church with them. She believes, but she just does not want to trust God.
And of course, Wyatt is every woman's dreams. He is sensitive, strong, and desperately in love with Ada.
For me, the book got off to a slow start but read through was rewarding. The outcome is not sure until nearly the last page.

There are discussion questions at the back so this would make a good choice for reading groups.

Thomas Nelson, 320 pages.

I received an egalley of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.

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