Reviewer Amy Lignor: Amy is the author of a historical fiction novel entitled The Heart of a Legend, and Mind Made, a work of science fiction. Presently, she is writing an adventure series set in the New York Public Library, as well as a teen fiction series, The Angel Chronicles. She is an avid traveler and has been fortunate to have journeyed across the USA, where she has met the most amazing people, who truly bring life and soul to her books. She lives in the Land of Enchantment (for now) with her gorgeous daughter, Shelby, her wonderful Mom, Mary, and the greatest friend and critic in the entire world - her dog, Reuben
Author: Jill Marie Landis
How long must a person wear their sins on their sleeve? Good question. And the author of this extremely good romance read gives us the answer.
In this, Book I of the Irish Angels series, readers are introduced to Lovie. Lovie is a young immigrant who came across the frightening ocean with her mother, father, and three sisters, to end up living in the Irish Channel – a New Orleans neighborhood for poor Irish laborers. Lovie’s family moves in with her aunt and uncle and, quite quickly, her parents pass away from disease. The uncle, a mean man who knows he hasn’t any money to support such a large family, decides to split up the girls. The two youngest will go one way, and Lovie and Megan, the oldest sisters, are on their way to an orphanage.
What Lovie and Megan don’t know is that upon arriving at the orphanage’s door, Megan will be whisked away over the shoulder of a large man, and Lovie will be sent to live in a house of ill-repute where she will do her best to conform and earn enough money to grant her a better life.
Very early in the story, readers find themselves in Glory – a small town that sits in the vacant country of Central Texas. Glory is a nice town with good people who love Laura Foster. Laura Foster is a lady of the highest caliber. A widow, she has opened a boardinghouse in Glory and decorated it to the maximum (her own ‘gilded cage,’ as it were). This rich widow has also hired Pinkerton Detective Agency, trying with all her might to track down her missing sisters. What Laura wants more than anything is to live a quiet existence – far from her checkered past of being Lovie, a woman much-abused in the Big Easy.
However, quiet is not exactly what Laura receives. Soon, Reverend Brand McCormick – a widower with two children comes calling – and Laura must do all she can to dissuade her suitor. She knows she isn’t a good enough lady for the wonderful, kind, handsome pastor, and wants to keep him and his children as far away as possible. But when a tragic secret from Brand’s own past is exposed, the reverend needs Laura’s help to get through. Not only does Brand’s past erupt in the small town, but Laura, too, runs into a couple of old “friends” who decide to ruin the brand new innocent life that she’s made for herself.
There are many good points to this story, including the fact that the past always catches up with you no matter how hard you try to outrun it. Forgiveness is also a major storyline – how one goes about living their lives when the “holier-than-thou’s” want to break you. A good, solid story from start to finish with memorable characters, readers will want to stand up, take sides, and shout for fairness in a non-judgmental world. I look forward to Book II.