"Glittering Promises" is a Christian romance set in 1913 in Italy. At least, 1913 was the date mentioned in the historical notes, where the author admitted that some of places she had on their Grand Tour would not have been available at that time.
Anyway, my big mistake was starting this series with the third book. This is a series were you really need to start with book 1. It's like I picked up a long book, flipped 2/3rds of the way into the book, and started reading. It was hard to pick up who everyone was, their relationships, and what had happened previously to cause the current problems. I felt like I would have better understood the characters' actions if I'd read the previous books.
If you just want to go on a Grand Tour, then you'll probably enjoy the series. There was some suspense from physical danger and a rocky romance. This book focused on Will and Cora's relationship problems, but I assume previous books showed them falling in love. However, Will didn't trust that Cora really loved him and took anything as confirmation of his doubts. I wondered if Cora was setting herself up for a lifetime of Will acting badly from jealousy as men will likely continue to be attracted to her due to her wealth and beauty.
The Christian element was Cora deciding that God is her ultimate Father and the One in whom she finds her identity. There was no sex or bad language.
What a wonderful finish to The Grand Tour Series! The Kensingtons and Morgans are in Vienna as the book begins, having just sighted one of the men who tried to kidnap the girls. They move on to Italy with more guards and stay in smaller villages, going into the cities for day trips. Besides having to be wary of kidnappers, they are besieged by reporters. Pierre de Richelieu meets them again in Rome, still trying to persuade Cora to marry him, though Cora makes it quite clear that Will is the man for her. She struggles with faintness and feeling ill and has several risky incidents. We finally have an end to the kidnappings and find out who is behind that and why. Cora also has a deeper sense of who she is, as a Diehl, a Kensington, and most importantly, a child of God. She thought ". . .about how grand it was of God, to sort out the glittering promises of my life and make it clear what was truth and what was a lie. What I could cling to, count on, and what I could not." (p. 396). Cora was not the only one to change greatly during these few months of the tour. As Mr. Morgan says on their last night in Rome, just before they were to sail for home, "We sent you off on the Olympic as children. But as we embark tomorrow, I know that I am in the company of a fine group of adults." (p.421). This series has romance, intrigue, action, faith, and a feeling of being along on the tour, seeing Europe. I highly recommend all three books. This is a series that must be read in order and in its entirety.
What a moving conclusion to the Grand Tour Series. It would be wise to read Grand Illusions first and then Grave Consequences next before reading Glittering Promises. In this final book in the series that were some amazing twists and turns and some surprises at the end. Many lessons were learned along the way and through it all they could see the way the Lord had a plan through all the summer. I loved this book and the whole series and would love to know what happened to all of them as they came back to America.
For Cora Kensington, the Grand Tour was to be the trip of a lifetime. She discovered the family she never knew she had, and may have even found the love she longs for in Will. And yet her life has just become infinitely more challenging _
Hounded by journalists chasing the beguiling story of the newest American heiress, Cora fights to remain true to her past, reconcile her present, and still embrace her future. But as Will struggles with her newfound wealth, she begins to wonder if their love is strong enough to withstand all that threatens to pull them apart.
Complicating matters is the stubborn pursuit of Pierre de Richelieu and the increased demands on her time and attention. Cora must stand up for what she believesÃ¢â¬âregardless of how that might challenge current family and cultural normsÃ¢â¬âin order to remain true to who she really is.
And as she glimpses the end of the tour, Cora knows it's time to decide Who and what defines her _ and who and what does not.
The romance between Pierre de Richelieu and Cora has caused me many an anxious night, while anticipating the ending of The Grand Tour series. I wanted Cora to end up with Will, but Pierre is so romantic and persistent I simply couldn't ignore his place in line for Cora's heart. I still haven't reconciled Pierre's willingness to overlook the fondness she had for Will, but Pierre loved her enough to give her a chance to discover who she as a new heiress. If you have followed the series you may be surprised who she ends up giving her heart to, but I was completely amazed by whom she chose. As I stated previously, I preferred Will for her. The romance of an heiress marrying a lowly tour guide would have been the truest proof that she really loved him. Obviously he would have looked like a gold digger, but that's not really in Will's personality to take her for her money. On the other hand, Pierre was better matched for her in terms of wealth, but I was conflicted with the thinking that he may have wanted to join houses for her money as well! This was quite the roller coaster ride, and the writing was above par with the character conflicts, the historic detail, and the beautiful backdrop of Italy.
This book was provided by the publisher through Litfuse Nest in exchange for an honest review.
The third book in the Grand Tour series by Lisa T. Bergren, Glittering Promises, begins rather slowly with pages of relating the feelings of the group of travelers. Once it picks up, the book really moves as Cora runs into problem after problem. She attempts to make good decisions and grow as the story line twists and turns. Bergren continues to create beautiful pictures of life in Europe during the early part of century. The group itself begins to encounter more fiction as Cora's father gives her full shares of the copper mine. That money waves to the reporters like a red flag to a bull, adding even more stress to Cora's adventure. This is a fun read with an unexpected conclusion. I recommend it to those who enjoy a historical romance that has well-developed basics.