Friday, July 30, 2010

My Review of A Hopeful Heart

Here's a description of the book from Bethany House:

"Can she turn her second-best chance into a golden opportunity?

Dowryless and desperate, Tressa Neill applies to the inaugural class of Wyatt Herdsman School in Barnett, Kansas. The school's one-of-a-kind program teaches young women from the East the skills needed to become a rancher--or the wife of one. But will Tressa have what it takes to survive Hattie Wyatt's hands-on instruction in skills such as milking a cow, branding a calf, and cooking up a mess of grub for hungry ranch hands?

Abel Samms wants nothing to do with the passel of potential brides his neighbor brought to town. He was smitten with an eastern girl once--and he got his heart broken. But there's something about quiet Tressa and her bumbling ways that makes him take notice. When trouble strikes, will Abel risk his life--and his heart--to help this eastern girl?"

My Rating: Summer

My Review:

This book is wonderful all the way around! The story caused me to think deeply about spiritual truths, and I was encouraged by the hope that Tressa, Abel, and other characters found in the Lord. The secondary characters were real (even the cat, Izzy-B)--either very misguided, very intriguing, or very sweet. And Aunt Hattie's story, including the help and inspiration she offers to Tressa and the other girls throughout the book, is great!

The romance in this book was beautiful. I was drawn into the suspenseful moments, and I confess to looking ahead sometimes because I was just so excited about what would be coming up next! I loved seeing the growth that happened for Tressa and Abel, and there were some moments in the book that really made my stomach flutter due to Abel's protection of Tressa.

The ending is more than satisfying, and the message that is set up by the title and the verse at the beginning of the book is powerful and lasting. I love it when there are many elements to a story, but also one guiding message that is emphasized throughout the book--and A Hopeful Heart really touched me in that regard. I'll say it again: this book is wonderful all the way around!


Kav said...

Great review, Amber. I have never read any of Kim Vogel Sawyer's book. I know, I'm waaaayyy behind the times but I'm reading as fast as I can!!! I'll definitely pick this one up because it sounds like the kind of book I your rave review has me chomping at the bit to get a hold of it!

Julia M. Reffner said...

Great review. I haven't read her either, but it sounds great!

Casey said...

I LOVED this book. One of Kim's absolute finest! I hope she comes out with another one to talk about some minor characters journeys, she did such a good job with crafting them, I want to know more! I am glad you liked it too, have you read My Heart Remembers? That one and this one are my FAVS by Kim. I have heard MHR at least 3 times.

bluerose_shelnut said...

I agree, great review! You've definitely made me want to read this one! :) I haven't read any of Kim's books, either. There's so many authors that I want to read.

Amber S. said...

Hello everyone! :D

KAV: Thank you! As far as I can recall, this is the first book I've read by Sawyer, too, so I hope I can read more. ;) Hope you enjoy it when you read it!

JULIA: Thanks! It was a great book, especially since it was not only a sweet story, but also a bit suspenseful, too. :) Definitely satisfying on multiple levels!

CASEY: You know, I think it was your review of this book that helped lead me to pick it up a while back when I was at Borders. :) I've held onto it until now, and it was wonderful to read it while on vacation! I haven't read My Heart Remembers, but it sounds great! And according to Sawyer's website, it looks like there is a sequel to that one coming out soon! :D Thanks for inspiring me to read her work!

BLUEROSE: Thank you! Hope you get a chance to read it--it's very good! And I know what you many great authors, so little time. ;)