Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Book Review: Where Trust Lies by Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan

How can one woman write so many incredible books and still keep each one different and interesting?  I don't know the answer to that, but Janette Oke must.  I've been reading her books for years and have yet to find one that I didn't enjoy reading. 
Where Trust Lies is the second book in the Return to the Canadian West series.  It opens where the first book Where Courage Calls left off as Beth Thatcher is returning home to Toronto after spending a year teaching in the west.  She is sure she has feeling for Jarrick Thornton, the Royal Canadian Mountie she met while in Coal Valley, and he has asked if he can pursue her.  She agrees, but tells him that she is determined to make sure that a life with him is God's will for her.  Upon returning home Beth prepares to spend the summer waiting for a letter from the school board inviting her to return to Coal Valley in the fall.  Her plans are put on hold when her mother and sisters announce that they are setting off a cruise that will last nearly the entire summer.  Beth is hesitant at first, but after speaking with Jarrick, she decides to spend this special time with her family.
Almost as soon as they board the ship, Beth's sister, Julie, finds some new friends.  They try to draw Beth into their little group, but something about them just doesn't seem right, and she hangs back, event though they ridicule her.  As the trip continues, the Thatcher family visits some beautiful sights and makes some wonderful memories, but the tension between Julie and the rest of the family grows.  Beth is determined to protect her sister, but when she fails in her mission, Julie is kidnapped and the whole family is plunged into a nightmare that seems never-ending.
My only disappointment in reading this book is that I will now  have to wait so long for the next one!  This is such a great series.  I love Beth, and I love Jarrick, and I can't wait for them to end up together.  I admire the way that Ms. Oke and Ms. Logan have portrayed some of the struggles of being a young woman stepping out into the world around the turn of the century.  Times were changing and many girls like Julie were anxious to take on new roles and do things that women had never been permitted to do before.  But there were also girls like Beth who still wanted a more traditional life with a home and family.  Jarrick and Beth were very proper in their courtship.  While it may seem odd today, Beth depended on Jarrick to make the first move in their relationship.  I also loved that Jarrick spoke to Beth's father, and was clear about his intentions regarding his daughter.  I hated that Beth and Jarrick were so far apart for most of this book, but Jarrick's romantic plans for them when she returned in the fall almost made it worth it.  And I was so excited when they finally saw each other again in the end.  It was also interesting to see a bit of police work of the day.   
I can't wait until the next book comes out, because I have to doubt that it will be as good as the first two.  I not only recommend this series, but every series written by Janette Oke, as well as those written with her daughter.  I'm not as big a fan of some that she wrote with T. Davis Bunn, but the Song of Acadia series was one of my favorites.  No matter which book or series you choose, you can't go wrong with the Oke family!  I promise that you can't go wrong with this historical fiction!

Happy Reading!

I was given an advance e-galley of this book by the publisher in exchange for this review.  A favorable review was not required, and all opinions are my own.  You can buy your copy of Where Trust Lies on or around February 3, 2015.

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