Shawna Williams has written a wonderful Christmas story about adoption that is set during the Great Depression, though the hopefulness of being adopted is a daily reality for children living in an orphanage, especially for those who are crippled.
Pastor David Langley's childhood is a poignant reminder set within this story, making for a double-edged sword in the placement of Caleb when an original adoption falls through. Rules are broken in desperation, but are picked up on when those in charge of the orphanage find out the details.
Shawna's story is one of love, warmth, care, and concern of the town spinster, Sadie Miller, for Caleb, which is set against the rigidity, rules, and criminal activities of certain parties in the orphanage. Since single parenting was forbidden, Sadie and Pastor David set out on a plan to work out the complications. For those wanting to adopt, this is a heart-warming story of the depths of persistence an adoptive parent is willing to forge through to overcome the regulations that hinder single parent involvement.
The camaraderie between Pastor David and Caleb bypasses outward appearances for personal reasons. And the hints of romance keep you intrigued about the relationship between the town spinster and the single Pastor, as tongues are wagging in their small town.
This eBook was provided free by the author, Shawna K. Williams, in exchange for my honest review. No monetary compensation was received.
David Langley is pastor of a small-town church in the middle of the Great Depression, and he has a problem. A six-year-old boy is about to arrive on the train, but the family who promised to adopt him have changed their mind at the last minute. As a former orphan himself, David does not want to send the boy back to the orphanage, which leaves him with the problem of what to do with Caleb. To complicate matters, Caleb lost an arm in an accident, which makes it harder to find potential adoptive parents. This is a problem that David, horribly scarred in the fire that took his family, understands only too well.
Sadie Miller, the town spinster, has spent the last few years caring for her ailing father and hoping that Brother Langley will notice her. Now her father is dead and, at thirty-three, she feels she is too old for the husband and family she always dreamt of. When David brings Caleb to her to look after temporarily, she agrees to take him in and soon falls in love with the small damaged child. But there is no chance that the orphanage will approve a single woman as an adoptive parent, no matter how well she might be able to provide for the child, and Sadie and David will have to fight just to get the orphanage to approve her as a temporary foster parent.
I really enjoyed Orphaned Hearts. The writing was strong, the characters were likeable and realistic, the plot was excellent, the romance was sweet and while the novel has an underlying Christian theme, it was not overtly â€˜preachy'. It also is the first novel I have read set during the Great Depression of the 1930's that has managed to not be depressing! The only problem was that it is really a novella rather than a full-length novel (43,000 words compared to 90,000 for a standard novel), and I would have liked it to be longer. Having said that, there was just enough plot for the length of the book, and to make it longer would have been adding words, not story.
Thanks to Shawna Williams and Desert Breeze Publishing for providing a free ebook to review.
This is a sweet story of trust, love and acceptance. Two imperfect people learn to accept who they are and to accept that God had brought them together. Their mutual love for the orphans is woven throughout the book and their love for each other is sweetly brought out at the end of the story. I'm glad there was an epilogue, it finishes the story of David & Sadie in a tender and sweet manner. I will look for more books by Shawna Williams.