Reviewed by April Gardner
The Winter Pearl by Molly Noble Bull
"The frigid Rocky Mountain winter setting is a direct contrast to this cozy romance."
In 1888, Colorado was a dangerous place for a girl on the run. But Honor McCall had to escape from her drunken uncle. She never imagined that she’d be rescued by a handsome young minister or find a place to call home in his church.
The Rev. Jethro Peters’ kindness was more than she could ever repay. So how could she stay on—as accepting charity while hiding the truth about the danger that stalked her and hiding her love for a man who might never return her feelings?
She had to leave, but she just couldn’t seem to go—and then Christmas brought a special miracle…
--back cover of “The Winter Pearl”
Rain is pouring down, the grave of her dear aunt is being filled before her, and her drunken uncle is leering at her from nearby just waiting for the moment he can get his groping hands on her. Poor Honor! That’s exactly the kind of pity Molly Noble Bull evokes in her writing, and it had me hooked from the start.
What choice does Honor have but to run? Her choices are few, but God intervenes in the form of Jeth.
Jeth, the minister, and God’s emissary of grace—I liked him immediately. He’s a gentleman of the kind you don’t see very often these days—kind and sincere, and he takes his faith very seriously. In fact, there are several characters in this book that genuinely live their faith. Not for legalistic purposes, but in order to reach others for Christ. It was an inspiration to me.
On the other hand, Lucas the drunken uncle, was a surprise character. He’s the bad guy--the one you don’t want to read any more about, because he disgusts you so much. I certainly never thought he would be one of the main characters. I half expected him to fall and break his neck, or get himself killed in a brawl right off the bat. But Bull had other plans for this scoundrel.
Without giving away the plot, all I can say is that I didn’t feel the same for him at the end as I did at the beginning. The author did a superb job with Lucas. I was almost reluctant to like him. After all, he’s a no-good and doesn’t deserve compassion or forgiveness. (So glad God is more merciful than I!) Reluctant or not, I did end up liking Lucas and never really noticed when it happened. Well done, Molly!
The frigid Rocky Mountain winter setting is a direct contrast to this cozy romance. But it’s more than that. It’s a spiritual challenge to forgive and to reach out to the lost--even the most undeserving.
I recommend “The Winter Pearl.”
April W Gardner writes adult and middle grade historical fiction. Her first novel, Wounded Spirits, releases with Vintage Romance Publishing in November of this year. She is a member of ACFW and reviews for Title Trakk, At Home With Christian Fiction, and FIRST Wild Card Blog Tours. A military spouse, April has performed the art of homemaking all over the world. Currently, she lives in Georgia with her darling Hubby. A homeschool mom, she fills her mornings talking fractions and phonics with her two sweet kiddos. In her free time, April enjoys reading, gardening, and DIY. In no particular order, she dreams of owning a horse, visiting all the national parks, and speaking Italian. Visit April's Website or her blog, A Writer's Journey. You can also get to know April on Facebook and Twitter.