3 Stars Out Of 5
Lighter historical fiction
December 15, 2012
I debated between giving this book a 3* or 3.5* when it came to rating it, but ultimately had to settle on 3*. I found the novel really slow moving and didn't feel like I really got pulled into the story until the end. While I was smiling by the end of the book and pleased for Rosalie and Kenny, I wasn't as invested in their story as I would have liked. The issues keeping them apart were pretty small, and didn't totally convince me. I came to appreciate Kenny's personal issues more so at the end of the book, but I wished I'd known more about Rosalie's upbringing and why she distrusted reporters so much. There were so many hints dropped about her dad but not a lot of details.
While I love reading books set during WWII and think it's a fascinating period to study, I'm a pacifist in many ways, and this book really delved quite heavily into patriotism and WWII propaganda. I don't mind books that tell the truth of the war, but this book focused a lot on how brilliant war work was and all the excitement of helping out with drives for war supplies and carpooling. There was a hint of the difficulties woman had in taking on men's jobs, and of the struggles of ambulance crews, but that was about it. As a historian, I know it was a lot harder than this book put across (in fact, I've done a lot of research into the difficulties women had in the 1950s as a result of changes that occurred during the war), which made this book feel just a little bit too fluffy for my liking. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure a lot of the details are accurate, from dance moves to locations in Seattle to Rosalie's job, but an incredibly upbeat and optimistic novel for one set during wartime. Kind of like watching Millions Like Us, the 1943 film.
I became a fan of Tricia Goyer thanks to her Big Sky Amish series, and have praised her ability to realistically blend her characters' spiritual journeys into her novels. Unfortunately, I didn't feel the same about this book, although possibly that's because it's co-written. I honestly found the book a little preachy in places, with all the mentions of characters praying together, reading the Bible, etc. I sincerely love to connect with characters over genuine spiritual struggles, but these references felt thrown in to make the book seem more Christian, especially the one at the end of the book about how two secondary characters were postponing their wedding until they found out what the Bible said about marriage. It just felt forced in places.
Ultimately, this is a feel-good read. Don't go into it expecting an epic historical novel. If you're a fan of historical romances and need a beach read, this would be a good choice. I was pleased with the ending and enjoyed a lot of the historical details surrounding Seattle in this period, but I also found it easy to put this book down and do something else. Definitely a lighter historical novel. I've found a lot of the Love Finds You books to be along this vein.