This isnt just "another one of those History Romances." I thouroughly enjoyed the suspense and the story all the way through. This book was better than the first and it was excellent. I adored all of the characters and found myself feeling what they felt and telling the Captain he was a coward many times. A new favorite.
The old Greek mythological story of a sculptor, Pygmalion, and his beautiful statue is classical reading, with variations and modernizations in today's literature everywhere you look. An update on the story was made into the movie, My Fair Lady, years ago. Threads of Faith could be another adaptation, written from a Christian point of view. The young object of transformation is Julianna Wayland, a waif from the streets of London of the late nineteenth century. She wasn't exactly the guttersnipe portrayed in the movie, but her Cockney accent placed her at least among the lowly maids of a grand Lord's household.
The instrument of transformation is a young American Captain, Daniel Sundberg, aboard his ship the Allegiance. Originally from a Wisconsin farm, Daniel ran away from home when he was 15 to fight in the War Between the States, although by the time he arrived in New York it was too late. He was found in the streets, bedraggled and hungry, by George Ramsey and taken into his household. Because George and Eliza had no children of their own, they adopted Daniel, educated him, and made him heir of the considerable Ramsey fortune. Daniel worked hard developing leadership skills and eventually became known among crews of sailing ships from New York to London as The Prince of Sea Captains because he always treated his crew well.
Captain Sundberg was an honorable man, the first Julianna had ever met. She first encountered him aboard his ship where she was discovered in a packing crate in the hold. Unfortunately, stowaways were looked upon as criminals even though we discover in the first few exciting chapters that she was there by accident. Her presence was discovered by a surly man known as the Grisly Devil. Refusing his advances earned her a severe beating that put her in the ship's infirmary. The captain didn't know what to do with her; for her protection, the remainder of the voyage was spent recovering in the jail cell adjoining the Captain's office. They became well acquainted, learned each other's secrets. Julianna fell in love with him. He liked her sass and chatter, her thoughtfulness of others and she liked his honesty and sense of responsibility. Captain Sundberg decided to take Miss Wayland to Wisconsin since he was journeying there to visit his dying father. He provided for her passage costs and new clothing and a chance to begin a new life.
There are many aspects of this book I really enjoyed. It takes off at a sprint right from the beginning when Julianna attempts to escape a pursuer in the opening scenes. It continues at a rapid pace from that point on. We learn important things about Julianna's character that we find admirable. For example she had always been determined to live a better life than what her sister had chosen for herself. Even though she grew up in the streets, she learned to read without schooling, found employment and saved money so that she could attempt to rescue her sister and move away from the city. She probably would have been successful in improving her life on her own if she hadn't been forced to find refuge from a scoundrel. As it was, being sponsored by the Captain was an opportunity she would be ungrateful to turn down. Living with Daniel's family was an important step for her personal development. She literally blossomed in her new environment, and it is then that she took the most important steps in her life, trusting God with her heart and finding joy living in faith in Christ from day to day. The author creates such a lovable character that we want her to find her happily ever after in this story.
Not only is Julianna likable, we see a lot to admire in Daniel's life as well. The author has created two main characters we grow close to very quickly in this book, even in spite of some less than admirable struggles on Daniel's part. In a series of twists and turns and complications involving Daniel's Wisconsin family and his adopted family, his eyes were opening to mis-perceptions of his youth and the manipulation he experienced in unexpected places. He was stubborn, even as a young man, and the author uses this stubbornness to delay resolution for Daniel until the very last moment possible, creating expectation and tension for the reader.
The one thing I was a little bit unhappy about was the development of a sudden turnabout in George Ramsey, Daniel's mentor. It seemed out of character for him to change directions and even attitudes after a lifetime of one type of lifestyle, even if it resulted from Daniel's prompts. I felt that that part of the resolution was too abrupt and too unrealistic without more understanding of the motive behind the action, considering the type of person George showed himself to be.
I loved the historical detail the author added to the basic plot. She created a rich tapestry of background that fit so well with the direction of the story line. I appreciate her attention to such detail. The romance was heartwarming and eventually satisfying. This is a combination I love to read. So much that I highly recommend this book for readers who enjoy this combination as well.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary review copy of this book from The Booketeria on behalf of Charisma Media/Realms. 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 Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.
Andrea Boeshaar in her new book, "Threads of Faith" Book Two in the Fabric of Time series published by Realms brings us into the life of Julianna Wayland in 1877.
From the back cover: Can Julianna and Daniel start a new life in a new country?
Julianna Wayland is running for her life! She hides in a crate on London's dock, only to be loaded onto a ship bound for America. During the voyage she meets Captain Daniel Sundberg, and by the time they reach New York's harbor, she is certain she's in love with him. The only problem is, Daniel has plans for himself--plans that don't include her.
As Julianna struggles to find her way in a new world, will trouble from her past derail the life she is looking for?
I enjoy stories that bring about seemingly chance encounters when they are really divine orchestrations of God. In an effort to escape the unwanted advances of her young master she runs and hides in an empty crate on the docks, which, of course, is now thought full, nailed shut and loaded on a ship bound for America. She is discovered, again, of course, but due to time constraints Captain Sundberg cannot stop somewhere and let her off so she has to voyage to America where she knows no one. Now it is a question of what will Julianna do in America and will the romance between her and Daniel actually work? I like the way Ms. Boeshaar writes. She is an accomplished author who knows how to deliver true to life dialog and create characters that you fall in love with. The love story between Julianna and Daniel is a lot of fun and this book is filled with plenty of action to keep you turning the pages. This is an excellent read! I recommend it.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Realms. 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 Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
Colonial 1878 England, Julianna has had enough working as a Maid for an overzealous, cruel master. She flees, and hides in a cargo crate that will hoist her aboard a ship, headed for America. Captain Daniel, comes to her rescue in more ways than one.
Unfortunately, I found myself forcing to complete it. I felt the supporting characters (Julianne's biological father, Daniel's family or even the Countess) weren't given enough time to share their thoughts or feelings throughout. I just wish it could have been a full Novel, instead of included in a series (I haven't read the others), and it might have turned out better. There were times I did receive moments of Faith though.
Threads of Faith by Andrea Boeshaar is a mixture of adventure and romance. Julianna Wayland is a young housemaid in 1877 London who is on the run. When the young master has designs for her, she flees, hiding in a crate on the docks. Before she can cry out, a lid is nailed to her hideaway and she gets loaded into the hold of a ship.
Captain Daniel Sundberg doesn't take kindly to stowaways, intended or accidental. But with a crew of all men, he feels obligated to protect the young miss. He needs to keep on schedule to sail to America, and doesn't have time to stop at a port to drop off Julianna.
Once they reach America he finds the desire to continue to provide for her confusing, but makes plans for her to help his mother with the family farm. As the couple journey they both are challenged to a deeper faith in God.
I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and am excited to find a new historical Christian writer.
This book was provided free for review by the author and Realms.