Sunday, April 20, 2014

Litfuse Blog Tour: A Sensible Arrangement

A Sensible Arrangement (Lone Star Brides, #1)Author: Tracie Peterson
Publication Date: April 1, 2014
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers
Series: Lone Star Brides # 1

Marty Dandridge Olson is a widow looking for a way out of Texas. Widower Jake Wythe has secured a job as a bank manager in Denver, only to discover that the bank board wants him to be a married man. With Texas in his roots, he advertises for a Lone Star bride, and Marty answers the call. They both agree they are done with romance and love and will make this nothing more than a marriage of convenience.

Marty works to carve out a new life in high-society Denver as Jake works to guide the bank through a collapsing economy. But when money goes missing at the bank and accounting discrepancies point to Jake, he must find a way to prove his innocence. Yet all he wants to do is go back to Texas and own his own ranch. Marty, on the other hand, owns a ranch–one she’s never told her husband about. She hates Texas because it represents the losses in her life. But as the couple grows closer and love begins to bloom, Marty realizes she needs to tell Jake the truth. Can she come to terms with the past and her anger toward God in order to make room for love?

Marty Dandridge Olson looked over the letters once again. There were three, and each contained a variety of information meant to assist her in making a decision. A life-changing decision.

“I’m going to do it,” Marty announced to the empty room. “I’m going to marry a man I’ve never met and do not love. I’m going to marry him and leave this place forever.”

“I hope so,” Jake replied. “I believe Marty, uh, Mrs. Olson, will be a pleasant and genteel addition to my home. I’ve been too long without a wife, as your good husband pointed out.”

This historical fiction novel is set in Texas in 1892 and is the first in a new series by a well-loved and very popular author, Tracie Peterson. I am very anxious to see what this series has in store as I was very impressed with this first book. We are given a feisty heroine, just the way I like them, named Marty. She is leaving her past behind to marry a stranger from an advertisement she saw in a local newspaper. Marty has reasons for wanting to marry again, but unfortunately love doesn’t fit in the mix. She and Jake Wythe, the hero of the novel, plan to keep the marriage as more of a business venture. However, we all know that a lot of things don’t always go according to plan!

I am not usually a fan of mail order bride stories, but for some reason this one felt different. I liked Jake and Marty’s relationship, even from the start. I thought they were well-developed characters and were just right to tell this story. They are both facing struggles beyond their control, but they learn to find solace in one another and in God. I would have like to see a little more romance between these two characters. I caught on early to what Peterson was trying to do. It was evident that she was more concerned about the message behind this book than the budding romance. The message was strong, however, and completely relevant and pertinent to anyone’s life.

This book is a very inspirational read and is the sure start to an amazing new historical fiction series. It feels like those are getting harder and harder to come by!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Bethany and for the purposes of a blog tour with Litfuse in exchange for my honest review***

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