Book Review: A Bride In The Bargain by Deeanne Gist

July 19, 2009 at 4:55 pm | Posted in Books | Leave a comment
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I had the pleasure of interviewing Deeanne Gist on our radio show “Kingdom Highlights” regarding her new book, “A Bride in the Bargain”.  Ms. Gist is a very gifted author and she has perfectly captured the logging industry in 1865 which, of course, is the time period the story takes place in.

Joe Denton is a man with a mission.  He has 640 acres of timberland of which he is about to lose half because his wife died and he cannot prove it  therefore, legally he is unmarried and in violation of the terms of the contract for the land.  Desperate he signs on for a wife that Asa Mercer is going to bring from back East. Anna Ivey thinks she signed on to be a cook at Joe’s lumber camp and doesn’t want to get married.   Now the race is on as to whether 1) Joe will actually fall in love with Anna and 2) get Anna to fall in love with him before the deadline when he will lose his land.

This is a fun read and Ms. Gist has a marvelous ability to create characters that you enjoy and, if they were real, wouldn’t mind having over to your house for a meal and fun time afterward.  Joe and Anna are terrific and real but so are the secondary characters which really makes the story come alive.  On top of everything Ms. Gist has a wonderful sense of humor and there are just some scenes that will having you laughing out loud.

There are major themes that run through this book foremost of which is how we let events run our lives.  Certain events left Anna believing that she caused the death of her parents and brother which is not the case.  She won’t get married because she believes she will be the cause of the death of her husband and children.  It takes a lot of work to get her to see the truth.  Another theme is where is our treasure?  Does Joe love his land more than he loves Anna?  Of course, I am not going to answer this question that will spoil the fun but this book explores the question that Jesus asked, “Where is your treasure?”

It is a very good read and I recommend it highly.  I hope that Ms. Gist will one day write a sequel that brings back all the characters a few years into their future.  It would be fun to see how they have grown and changed.  In the meantime we just have to enjoy this book and be ready for her next book.

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