Isaac Shaw is dead. For sixteen years, his family has struggled on in shame, believing he died a criminal—responsible, in 1837, for burning down the local mill and causing the death of several villagers, including the wife of the mill owner. Since that fateful night, the family has survived due to the remarkable charity of Edward Reeve, the bereaved mill owner, who now employs Isaac Shaw’s sons, Will and Manny.
When Manny decides to run away, the decision takes him straight into the path of a traveling Mormon elder, a meeting that threatens the Shaws’ well-being. Charged with the care of a letter challenging the village’s history, Manny must find a way to reveal the true identity of Hope, the young woman he loves. It is a quest destined to change him and his family forever.
I will start out by saying that is an LDS historical fiction book, as you can tell from the blurb above.
For me this book was really slow going. I had a hard time keeping my head in the story. My attention was never fully engaged and I never became fully invested in the characters. Having said that, I don't think the writing is poor, I just think it wasn't my style which made it hard for me, personally, to engage.
I do really like the cover though and the title of the book which really does reflect the overall message of the book as well as the name of the main character.
I liked how so much of the book revolved around a mysterious letter that passed hands many times and contained the truth everyone was so desperately either searching for or hiding. The concept is a good one and I liked the actual plot, I just had a hard time getting through it. There was just something missing for me- that heart pounding, hum through your veins connection, I guess. It's hard to explain, but this book just didn't hit the mark for me.
It is obvious to me that the author really did his homework on this part of history. That is something I can really appreciate. My roots trace back to England (distant and not so distant- my grandparents were so very British) and much of my family history involves conversion to the LDS church there.
You can check out the author and read the prologue and opening chapter HERE and decide for yourself about this book. Opening chapters can give you a very good idea of what a book will be like so I encourage you to see for yourself and not take my word for it. If you love LDS fiction, you may really enjoy this book.
You can purchase Hope at Amazon and Deseret Book.
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