A Fast-Moving Glimpse at Post-Civil War Love Trouble
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In the celebratory mood of the recently-ended Civil War, Sarah discovers her betrothed has been keeping a devastating secret.
While the tiny town of Wabash, Indiana, celebrates the end of the fighting, Sara Montgomery attends the parties, but inside she’s fighting a deep sadness. The love of Sara’s life, Rand Campbell, didn’t come back from the front.
So her brother and ailing father persuade her to pledge herself to another man—despite her misgivings. When Sarah finds out that Rand is in fact alive—and that her fiancé Ben Croftner knew it—she indignantly breaks off their engagement.
It’s October, 1865, and in the wake of the war, Wabash, Indiana is having nightly dances. Sarah Montgomery doesn’t feel like celebrating, though, when the war has “taken so much from her”. Her fiance, Rand Campbell was killed, and though it’s been over a year, she’s still grieving. Her father’s heart is failing, and he wants to see her married. Despite her misgivings, to appease her father, she accepts Ben Croftner’s proposal. Despite his new-found wealth, Ben’s not half the man Rand was. As it turns out, he took advantage of Rand’s mistakenly reported death to steal Sarah away.
For the first time in over a decade, Colleen Coble’s early works are being reprinted. What had originally been presented as four volumes is now a six-part series of novellas. This is the first time I’ve read a novella that was a serialized portion of a novel rather than just a short teaser or prequel. At 90 pages, it’s a quick and easy read. Sarah is likeable, as is Rand, and it’s nice to see each of them defined in the larger context of their immediate family environment. The villainous Ben is more than sly, he is dangerous. But just as we are getting acquainted with everyone, the curtain falls on a huge cliffhanger.
It’s difficult to rate a work that’s incomplete. Initial impressions indicate that the drama is a bit soap opera-ish (Secrets, misunderstandings, and unspoken feelings drive the tension.) Readers won’t find any closure, but their interest will be piqued for the subsequent books.
— Dawn Teresa
3.5 of 5 Hearts. A Fast-Moving Glimpse at Post-Civil War Love Trouble.
Though incomplete, A Heart’s Disguise is poised to be a good set-up for a serialized look at Colleen Coble’s early works. Longtime Coble fans may have read these stories, but this new printing and format will likely gain a new audience.
*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”