A Hero for Miss Hatherleigh By Carolyn Miller

Carolyn Hatherleigh is in the upper echelon of Victorian London society. Her father is a viscount. At the ripe old age of 18 it is time for her to find a suitable husband. Forget about love and character being desirable in a spouse. Title and money are the name of the game. Due to a societal indiscretion of a young man Carolyn was seen with, her mother sends her off to her grandmother’s estate by the sea in Devon. Christmas has just passed and she is expected to stay until spring! To say Carolyn is upset is an understatement. All she can think about is how BORING it will be with her distant stuffy grandmother.
Carolyn is a brat! She is selfish, thoughtless, prideful, and is a very unkind in her dealings with others. By accident while out for a walk she meets a young man named Gideon. He is a Paleontologist whose interest in fossils is to show them not as part of evolution but God’s creation. He is kind and gentle. His sister Emma is just a sweetheart! Her health is bad and her body is frail but her spirit is joyful. Caroline begins visiting her and a friendship develops between the two girls and Emma’s brother.
Both Carolyn and Gideon find themselves attracted to each other but both try to dismiss the idea as they are not on the same level of society. They become dear friends. Something Carolyn realizes she has never had. She is swept up into their lives and secrets. Mysteries and danger follow. I won’t say anymore but it gets very exciting!
I found it sad that Carolyn’s extreme wealth and lofty heritage robbed her of the realities of life. She was not a Christian but worshiped the god of aristocracy which revolved around numerous customs and ridiculous etiquette. Most would think abundant riches would foster freedom as an individual however Carolyn’s life was nothing more than a prison.
Her relationship with Gideon and Emma not only helped her see Christ by their words and actions, but gave her a comparison with which to view herself This brought conviction in her heart of how she truly was and it was not a pretty sight. I thought it was wonderful that in spite of her snobbish upbringing, she didn’t make excuses but wanted to change. Gideon and Emma were beautiful examples of how Christians living out their faith will be a testimony for the Lord and change lives. True faith and salvation in Christ were they mainstay of this book! A truly wonderful book on many levels!
I received this book from Kregel Publications in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.


When Life Doesn’t Match Your Dreams By Jill Eileen Smith

Whether we admit it or not, we have all have an unconscious “script” written in our heads about how our lives will progress. This is more than dreams of setting goals; it is also a dream because we cannot know all the details of our future. When life takes a different course, we are shocked, hurt, and disheartened even if it is due to our own bad choices.
Ms. Smith looks at 12 different women of the Old Testament whose lives did not follow their expectations and plans. She helps us see that these ladies weren’t just Bible characters but real flesh and blood women just like us. They had the same emotions and feelings as any woman. Each faced disappointments, difficulties and made mistakes just as we do. God wrote about them that we might learn from their examples good or bad.
I was delighted that the author not only wrote about well-known women from the Scriptures but several you wouldn’t have thought of studying in this way; Adah (Noah’s wife), Melah (Lot’s wife) and Aneksi (Potiphar’s wife). All very interesting! If God included them in His Word, they are important too!
The author does an amazing job of bringing each of these women to life. I was able to put myself in their place and time, seeing events from their perspective. The next part of the chapter is entitled “In Our World”. Here I was able to realize how what happened to a woman who lived 1000’s of years ago can be applied to my life today. I really liked this part. It helped me see that though time and customs may be different today, who we are as human beings never changes. “Imagine with me” returns to that particular woman seeing through her eyes the impact of her experience on the rest of her life.
I found Ms. Smiths in sights on the lessons that can be learned very interesting. She went past the obvious and brought out things I would not have thought of. The questions at the end of the chapters really aided me in looking deeper at myself, thus gaining even more from the study. I thoroughly enjoyed this book!
I received this book from Revell Publishing in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have stated are my own.