Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Book review: Steadfast Heart by Tracie Peterson

Steadfast Heart by Tracie PetersonSteadfast Heart by Tracie Peterson

   I requested this book from the publisher, Bethany House to review because I mistook the author for another whose works I had previously enjoyed. Upon discovering my mistake, I was disappointed but gave this novel a chance in order to judge it fairly in my review.

Steadfast Heart is the first in a new series by the author Tracie Peterson.  Let me present his caveat that I don't usually love romances, even Christian historical-fiction novels. However, so you can know my frame of mind I do own and enjoy Liz Tolsma and Sarah Sundin's books. I also thought one I read by Carol Cox had some good points. And Beverly Lewis's books are well-written with some good morals although I consider them rather a waste of time literary-speaking.

Steadfast Heart was one of the most boring books I have ever experienced. Surprisingly the author is quite popular and has penned over 100 similar novels. The fame shocks me, the number of books doesn't. This author has a tendency to make a simple storyline, such as that found in Steadfast Heart stretch over 300 pages! What a waste of time for a Christian girl or woman to spend her time on such literature. The literary quality was poor, the characters hard to relate to and the storyline lacking depth. Not only that, the romance was the most lame I have ever read.
   The heroine is Lenore who is hoping to find a husband according to her parents' urgings to marry soon. To my surprise, the book focused far more on Abrianna, Lenore's lively red-headed friend. The ''prince charming'' in this tale is quite boring. The one lesson he learns in this novel is weak and feels ''thrown in'' to he story. Lenore is supposedly the sweetest and most graceful creature alive yet her character isn't the most admirable or lovable- to the reader. Supposedly the hero in this book was smitten upon first sight of her.
Frankly, I was much more interested in Lenore's humorous friend Abrianna and her future which I know will be the focus of the next book.
Being familiar with the films made off of Jane Austen's classic books such as Pride and Prejudice I believe the author made an attempt to let her characters in Steadfast Heart speak with poise and elegance such as they. But Tracie Peterson didn't quite master the art.
For instance:
''...grief would flood my soul if I thought I'd lost all chance of winning his love.''

and later...
''I love him, Mother. I've loved him from first glance. I suppose that might sound silly to some but it's the truth. I've even prayed about this. Abrianna told me that God would show me His direction for my life, and I believe that direction points to Kolbein.''

The book is full of dialogue which is made up of short sentences spattered with old-fashioned words. Instead of sounding historically-correct they simply sound childish.
It reminds me of a badly-produced period film. You know when you can just tell that the actors have no proper idea of the time period they are attempting to portray?

If you don't understand my thoughts on this novel, read it for yourself and come to your own conclusions!

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion on it. 

  Lenore Fulcher isn't pretentious despite her spoiled upbringing. Her deepest desire at the age of twenty is to find true love. However, her father believes she's wasted enough time searching for a suitable husband, and he wants to marry her off to one of his business partners--thirty-seven-year-old James Rybus. But the idea of marriage to a man so much older is out of the question for Lenore.

Kolbein Booth, a lawyer from Chicago, arrives in Seattle looking for his headstrong sister who he believes may have answered an advertisement for mail-order brides. Sick with worry, he storms the Madison Bridal School, demanding to see his sister, only to learn she isn't there. But Lenore Fulcher is, and something about her captures his attention.

Is this the man Lenore has been searching for? She may not have long to find out...