Monday, July 2, 2012

Hearts Restored – Prue Phillipson

Publisher:  Knox Publishing
Pages: 428 pages
Source:  Review copy from publisher
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance

From Goodreads:
What can a young man of fifteen do when he is told by his mother that the three cousins he is about to meet all want to marry him?

Daniel Wilson Horden has arrived in London with his parents from their home in Northumberland on the very day of King Charles II’s triumphant return to his capital. Receiving his own personal wave from the king, Daniel longs only to serve him, but first he must keep at bay the threat of marriage.

His two French cousins are adamant in their pursuit of him, but Daniel is intrigued by his English cousin, Eunice, whose Puritan father snatches her away from the reunion celebrations. Unaware that his gallant attempt to save her has endeared him to her, Daniel only just escapes the marriage trap which his younger French cousin lays for him and is sent off to study at Cambridge University.

Once she returns to her father’s home, Eunice is condemned to a life of austerity. Heart-sick, she is assured by her grandmother that Daniel will come for her when he graduates from university.

But, unaware of his cousin’s feelings for him, Daniel goes off to join the navy only to find that fighting in the king’s service is not as glorious as he had imagined.

While the navy suffers at sea, London passes through plague and fire.

Will Eunice survive the hardship? And will Daniel return to fulfil the promise in his eyes on that fateful day in London?

My Thoughts:
Every so often a book comes along that just stays with you.  This was one of those books.  I was up and down all through this book.  I felt for both Daniel and Eunice.  I detested the French sisters.  They wanted Daniel for his title.  They thought that they would be able to change him.  He hated everything they stood for.    I found it funny that he seemed to take great pleasure in letting them know he had a title but no money to go with it.  His family was not all about the money like the aunt and grandmother were.  I did enjoy seeing the transformation, however small, of the grandmother near the end of the book.  I understood Eunice’s father to a certain extent.  I think he was too harsh on Eunice when it came to men.  He wanted to protect her from heartache. However, all of the moral values he taught her prepared her for later on.  It made her stronger. All of Daniel’s relatives that kept trying to arrange a marriage for him irritated me to no end.  I wanted to slap them all.  I loved Daniel’s parents.  It was obvious that their love was genuine.  They wanted what was best for their son and they didn’t feel an arranged marriage was best for him.  I could identify with Daniel’s mother as he joined the Navy.  I read this book knowing that in just a few days my son will be deployed. The fear and heartache stay with you. There were so many obstacles thrown in Daniel and Eunice’s way.  I loved Eunice’s integrity.  I dare say if she had not had the upbringing her father gave her then she would not have been able to endure the hardships she had to go through.  The thread of faith that flowed through the story was refreshing.  I didn’t feel like I was being preached at.  This has been a wonderful book to read and review and will make a great gift for several of my friends.  I look forward to reading more books by this author.

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