Saturday, August 01, 2009

Rita Gerlach's Surrender the Wind ~ Reviewed

Surrender The Wind
By Rita Gerlach
Abingdon Press
Release Date: August 2009
ISBN: 978-1-4267-0072-9

Review by Michelle Griep

American Revolutionary patriot Seth Braxton is torn between the land he shed his blood for and the prospect of reuniting with his sister Caroline, who was a motherless child taken to England at the onset of the war.

With no intention of staying permanently, Seth arrives in Devonshire to find his sister grieving over the death of her young son. In the midst of such tragedy, Seth meets Juleah, the daughter of an eccentric landed gentleman. Her independent spirit and gentle soul steal Seth’s heart, enraging the man who once sought her hand and schemed to make Ten Width, the ancestral home of Seth’s loyalist grandfather, his own.

Will Seth and Juleah’s love and faith survive a sinister plot of murder, abduction, and betrayal? You’ll have to read it yourself to find out.

As much as I enjoyed getting to know the hero/heroine, what I like most about Rita Gerlach’s writing is her characterization of secondary characters. Sir Henry is the heroine’s father, and though he plays a small but significant part in the story, I looked forward to scenes that included him. His off-the-wall antics and dialogue are due to dementia, which gives one a certain sympathy for the old fellow, but nonetheless are pretty humorous.

Liking Sir Henry is as easy as hating Constable Latterbuck. Bluntly stated, he’s a schmuck. Gerlach’s portrayal of him is as complete as if he were a main character, which pulled me more into the story.

I have to admit there is one point in the story where I skipped to the end just to make sure a character I loved would survive. Without giving it away, the point is that Gerlach includes plenty of action throughout.

Surrender the Wind is a release from the new fiction line at Abingdon Press. I applaud Abingdon’s daring for publishing historicals that aren’t limited to Americana. I am anxious to read a variety of Abingdon’s different eras and settings, and of course…more from author Rita Gerlach!

Bonus Review:

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The language and imagery in this book is enough to have me craving for more from author Rita Gerlach. The one downfall to this book was that I felt that things went so fast and there was not always enough depth as I would like, but with a 400 page book and so many things happening, one can only fit in so many words. Bringing forth the best of an English native land as well as a post-Revolutionary America hosts an exciting setting for this story of romance, betrayal, heart break, and adventure. The interweaving of the characters past, present, and future is beautiful and believable. I loved the main character and it was so good to have a book that followed a man's point of view for once instead of a woman.

I am really excited about the new publishing house of Abingdon Press and this cover is absolutely to die for!

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

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