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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Review: Prairie Rose (Book One in "A Town Called Hope" series)

By guest reviewer Lianne Lopes

Prairie Rose
by Catherine Palmer

A Town Called Hope, the inspiring series set in post Civil War Kansas, is the creation of best-selling romance writer Catherine Palmer. In the fast-paced Prairie Rose, impulsive nineteen-year-old Rosie Mills takes a job caring for the young son of widowed homesteader Seth Hunter in order to escape the orphanage in which she was raised. Rosie's naive view of love and her understanding of what it means to have a Father in heaven are quickly put to the test. Afraid of being wounded again, Seth struggles to freely open his heart--to his hurting son, to a woman's love, and to a Father who will not abandon him. Together Rosie and Seth must face the harsh uncertainties of prairie life--and the one man who threatens to destroy their happiness.
Rosie Mills is a foundling who has lived at the orphanage in Kansas City all her life. She's always longed for a home of her own, and at age 19, she is too old to stay on as a ward of the orphanage anyway. Sadly, there aren't many good prospects for a girl like her. That is, until she falls out of a tree and lands in the wagon, and arms, of handsome widower, Seth Hunter.

Turns out, he’s in need of someone to cook, keep house and take care of his motherless five year old son. It seems the perfect opportunity for Rosie until she arrives at the Hunter homestead, in the middle of nowhere on the Kansas Prairie. Trials abound for the young woman. There are those hardships normal to prairie life, as well as the constant threat that her employer’s brother-in-law could show up at any time to kidnap her young charge. But most shattering of all is when she realizes she’s lost her heart to Seth Hunter. Will Seth be able to forget the young wife taken from him years before, and in turn give his heart to Rosie?

In Prairie Rose, Catherine Palmer brings to life the joys and hardships of life and love on the prairie in the 1860s. I developed a new and enduring admiration for those pioneers who forged a life out of the soil and helped make America what it is today. Filled with light hearted humor as well as suspense, drama and romance, it is a pleasant read for ladies of all ages. And threaded expertly throughout the story is an even deeper spiritual theme of a soul’s deep worth to God, no matter what others may think.