Courting Miss Amsel
Not My Cup of Tea
This book made such an impression on me, that I couldn't remember I had read it before until about halfway through. While I do think author Kim Vogel Sawyer is a very good writer, I couldn't get into this book. I tried and tried to feel something, anything toward the heroine, but couldn't raise any sort of connection with Edythe Amsel.
I thought all of the characters were fairly well developed. I understood the background behind each one, or at least I think I did. Maybe I didn't and that's why I didn't connect. I did like Miss Amsel's teaching methods, and wished my children had teachers like her. I also thought the look into the Women's Right to Vote issue was very well written.
I loved the two little boys, the nephews of Joel Townsend, and thought their personalities were quite charming. I thought Joel was a tad desperate.
There was a twist in the story about halfway through, that even though I wasn't looking for it at first, was fairly predictable, although the character kind of threw me for a loop. I don't want to give it away, but I will say I didn't see this particular character going in quite this direction.
All-in-all, this is definitely not staying on my "Keeper" shelf, but it doesn't mean that I wouldn't love to give author Kim Vogel Sawyer another try.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Bethany House book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade CommissionÃ¢ÂÂs 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : Ã¢ÂÂGuides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.Ã¢ÂÂ
April 8, 2013
Such a good story!
This was an excellent story: well-developed plot, fast moving, real-life characters. Felt really blessed I got to read it! Thank you, Kim Vogel Sawyer!!
September 20, 2012
I enjoyed this book very much. Reading about history and period romances is a favorite of mine. We take so much for granted in our lives and to read about a one room school house and the creative ways Miss Amsel would teach her children and how even then the school board questioned her teaching methods. I loved how the story takes it's time with the character falling in love and not rushing into a romance like we have a tendency to do now.
September 6, 2012
Pleasant read, relaxing, perfect for a lazy Sunday
I just finished reading Courting Miss Amsel by Kim Vogel Sawyer. It wasn't until I had finished the book that I realized I had reviewed another of Sawyer's books in the past, In Every Heartbeat. One of the things I really liked about that book was how well-researched it felt, and the flawed, believable characters. This was certainly true of Courting Miss Amsel as well.
Courting Miss Amsel occurs in a totally different time and place -- Nebraska in 1882. I'm drawn to fiction in the plains states, and this one did not disappoint. Sawyer writes as though she has experienced a serious blizzard or two (but why does every story set in this part of the country involve a blizzard? Hmmm...). That is another way of saying, she certainly seems to have captured the spirit of this part of the country.
The basic plot line is that Edythe Amsel comes to this little town in Nebraska to teach school. She's escaping her emotionally abusive father, and although she isn't terribly religious, she clearly feels called to teach. And she's good at it.
Two of her eighteen students are being raised by their bachelor uncle, Joel, and it doesn't take long for Joel to be attracted to the new teacher, and for her to be attracted to him. She doesn't want to be courted, and he doesn't want to be yoked to an unbeliever. So there are definitely some issues.
What I really loved about this story was how believable so many of the characters were. The children were simply precious and I had a picture in my head of each of them. Edythe's landlady has to be my favorite character in the book. I want to be her when I grow up...
This was a pleasant read, relaxing, perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon. I truly enjoyed it.
Disclosure: Bethany House provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes. No other compensation was received, and all opinions are my own.
June 27, 2011