Thursday, March 24, 2011
Shannon Taylor Vannatter's White Doves ~ Reviewed
By Shannon Taylor Vannatter
April 1, 2011
Romance wasn’t what Laken had in mind.
Laken Kroft left home eight years ago and never looked back. Who knew when she applied for the promotion to postmaster that she'd end up in Romance, Arkansas, and much too close to her parents, the town drunk and the local gossip maven?
Hayden Winters has his hands full raising his paraplegic nephew, Brady, and wrestling with his guilt over having caused the child's injury. When the boy's father, Laken's brother, turns up and starts talking custody, Laken's influence is Hayden's only hope. But whose side is she really on?
Will their mutual bond with their seven-year-old nephew draw them closer or rip them asunder? Will Laken accept Hayden “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” or be forced to turn her back on him and “Return to Sender”?
Shannon Taylor Vannatter’s contemporary romance, White Doves, is a beautiful story of love, hope and forgiveness. Laken must learn to forgive her mother and Hayden must learn to forgive himself. The story is set in a small, Arkansas community of horse-rides, picnics and community church functions. Everyone knows everyone it seems, which wouldn’t be a problem if it wasn’t for the painful memories swirled within the familiarity. What irritates Laken most is the hypocrisy displayed by her own parents. Her mother might attend church every Sunday, but that’s only so she has plenty of drama to feed to her gossip hungry friends, and her father is nothing more than a drunk. When Laken gets a temporary job near her childhood home, she determines to avoid her mother at all cost. Not an easy task when you work in the local post office, and as misfortune would have it, she comes face to face with her mother almost immediately.
And yet Romance isn’t all bad. Handsome Hayden Winters, a fellow post-office employee is intriguing…minus his “born-again-believer” status. Laken is frustrated by his religion, yet captivated by his GQ good looks and southern charm. Maybe she can deal with a dash of religion, so long as Haydon doesn’t try to shove it down her throat.
This novel was extremely well written. There were very few dialogue tags to pull you from the story, very little, if any, telling, and no obvious back-story lags. All pertinent information was seamlessly woven into the conversation and action and emotions were authentically displayed. She also did a great job of showing the angst Laken felt as God began to pull on her heart. Hayden’s personal transformation throughout the story was just as dynamic as that of the heroines and Shannon did a great job of adding depth to a shorter work. I look forward to reading more of Shannon’s work in the future.
Reviewed by: Jennifer Slattery