I loved Sarah's debut novel! The Heiress of Winterwood was such an unexpected good read because I felt it wasn't your typical Regency romance novel! There was much depth that brought the story to life in an unforgettable way since it wasn't just about two people falling in love!
From the very beginning I was hooked to the story and it only kept getting better! The intricacies of what was happening in the family had me thoroughly engaged as well as the interactions with the residents of two brothers at Eastmore Hall! Amelia's passion was so strongly felt through the pages as well as Graham's!
The characters and story were awesome, but the Gospel message was truly powerful! More times then once I have been in that same similar state with God as Amelia in struggling to trust Him with certain things in my life! I am grateful that Sarah made such a heroine who was not only believable in this aspect, but also easily relatable! Everything surrounding this novel had trust in God at the center of it as well as the truth that He will never leave us or forsake us!
I am eagerly looking forward to more novels by this author because she writes a not so typical romance mixed in with drama, action, and surprisingly mystery! I highly recommend this novel to any Regency era lovers!
Graham Sterling has spent what seems like a lifetime at sea. He is in Her Majesty's Navy and has been forced to put to port his battle-damaged ship for repairs. While on leave he returns home to find his older brother pretty much a drunkard and the family estate in major debt. His wife has died 10 months previous and he meets his 9-month-old baby daughter, Lucy, for the first time. She has been in the care of his wife's best friend, Amelia Barrett. Initially, all Graham wants to do is find someone to care for his daughter, get his ship repaired and return to the sea. Everything begins to change when he meets his daughter and Amelia.
Both main characters struggle with believing God has their best interests in mind when difficult circumstances in life come to the fore. They don't doubt the existence of God, but whether He cares for their day-to-day struggles as they both believe God has let them down in the past. There isn't a lot of action in this story and the plot moves along slowly. I would have liked more background information on these main characters to see what made them tick. I think this would have added depth to the characters and that would have helped me connect with them.
Amelia Barrett made a promise upon her friend's deathbed to take care of her baby, Lucy, as her very own. As heiress to the Winterwood estate upon marriage, Amelia finds herself betrothed to Edward Littleton, a man whose character is different than originally portrayed and who refuses to allow Lucy to stay. Upon Captain Graham Sterling's return from sea, Amelia must explain his wife's passing, introduce him to his daughter and make quick plans to ensure her bond with Lucy remains. Through many twists and turns, friends and foes, lies and loves, Amelia and Graham must learn to work together for a chance at their happily-ever-after.
A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
This book was outstanding, even more so as it was Sarah Ladd's debut novel. The characters, faith, time frame (Darbury, England: 1814), writing style, word choice and story line all kept me fully engaged until the end. I thoroughly enjoyed this story from start to finish_I was only disappointed when I read the last page! Fortunately, I have the sequel, The Headmistress of Rosemere, on my shelf to read next. Bravo!!
I absolutely love a book that only gets better as I continue to read it. I was certain I would give this a four-star rating and that I knew exactly how this would end. The more I read, the more I liked it. And in the last few pages, the author threw a wrench into the narrative that completely threw me for a loop. It was then that I called out and said that the author had earned her five-star rating!
This is a typical Christian historical romance in many ways. It's like a Christian Regency romance in many ways. However, there is no profanity nor bedrooms scenes. The Christian message comes through in a way that does not come across as preachy. Captain Sterling and Amelia do make for an intriguing character, and Edward is that villain who becomes more vile as the story goes on. If you like romance with a little bit of intrigue, this book is for you.
I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not financially compensated, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.
The Heiress of Winterwood, written by Sarah E. Ladd, is Book One in the Whispers On The Moors series. An excerpt from the back cover: Amelia Barrett, heiress to an estate nestled in the English moors, defies family expectations and promises to raise her dying friend's baby. She'll risk everything to keep her word - even to the point of proposing to the child's father - a sea captain she's never met.
The storyline was interesting; the time is 1814 in England and young Amelia promises to raise baby Lucy after the baby's mother dies. The father, Captain Graham Sterling, has been out to sea and returns when Lucy is nine months old. Amelia is so attached to Lucy by this time that she proposes to Graham when they first meet so she can keep mothering Lucy. The book was fairly fast paced and had some twists that kept the storyline moving. However I thought the ending had a predictable outcome. I still enjoyed reading this book very much and would recommend it to others.