Friday, September 27, 2013

Review of "Love's Awakening"

Rating: 4.5 Stars
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Review: Laura Frantz continues "The Ballantyne Legacy" in "Love's Awakening," focusing on Ellie, the youngest daughter of Eden and Silas. The title and the cover design evoke the gentle beauty of dawn and the quiet and gradual beginning of a new day. "Love's Awakening" is subtly beautiful, a subdued romance. The direct interaction between Ellie and Jack is somewhat limited. Their story has a "Romeo and Juliet" quality, and despite the differences between the Ballantynes and the Turlocks, there is a sense of rightness to the growing love between Ellie and Jack.  

Frantz goes beyond the romance and adds the drama of forbidden love, prejudice, and social change. "Love's Awakening" is not as gripping as its predecessor, "Love's Reckoning."  It is more predictable in comparison; but in true Frantz style, it is beautifully written and finely crafted.  The history of the abolitionist movement blends seamlessly into the Ballantyne saga.  History can sometimes feel forced, but this is not the case in Frantz's novels.  The Ballantynes' involvement in the abolitionist cause is not surprising, and I could expect nothing less from Eden and Silas, given their history.   Courage and strength are part of the Ballantyne legacy, and so is hardship.  Tragedy finds its way into "Love's Awakening" adding a bittersweet quality to triumph.  While there is a degree of closure with a happy ending, the stage is immediately set for the sequel. But we must wait until 2014 for the new questions to be answered; for now mystery surrounds the ongoing saga. 

“Available August 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above 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.

Summary from Revell: The path to true love lies somewhere between two feuding families

In the spring of 1822, Ellie Ballantyne leaves finishing school and returns to the family home in Pittsburgh only to find that her parents are away on a long journey and her siblings don't seem to want her to stay. Determined to stand her ground and find her place in the world, Ellie fills her time by opening a day school for young ladies.

But when one of her students turns out to be an incorrigible young member of the Turlock family, Ellie knows she must walk a fine line. Slaveholders and whiskey magnates, the Turlocks are envious of the powerful Ballantynes and suspicious of their abolitionist leanings. As Ellie becomes increasingly entangled with the rival clan--particularly the handsome Jack Turlock--she finds herself falling in love with an impossible future. Will she betray her family and side with the enemy?

Masterful storyteller Laura Frantz continues to unfold the stirring saga of the Ballantyne family in this majestic tale of love and loyalty. This is the Ballantyne Legacy.

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful review! Thanks so much for taking time for my stories and crafting such a lovely, compelling review. I'm honored.
    In Him,
    Laura Frantz



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