The Covered Deep
by Brandy Vallance
Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Worthy Publishing (October 14, 2014)
SOME DREAMS ARE WORTH SEARCHING FOR
Bianca Marshal is looking for a man who can quote both Jesus and Shakespeare. Not surprisingly, that man is hard to find in the small Appalachian town where she lives. Her mother insists that Bianca lower her standards. One the eve of her twenty-fifth birthday, even Bianca wonders if her mother is right.
Still set on experiencing love, or at least a little adventure, Bianca wins an essay contest that propels her into a whirlwind search for the perfect hero. Via the opulence of London and the mysteries of Palestine, Bianca's true love will be revealed—but not without a price that might be too heavy to pay.
The Covered Deep is a very well written piece of fiction. A winner of Operation First Novel, author Brandy Vallance put a daunting amount of research into this one. Not only did she have to study late 1880’s Appalachia, she had to study London, ships, and the Middle East.
Her characters are well-read and studied and the knowledge they have is a fun way Ms. Vallance shares some of her historical tid bits.
Often, a book’s first chapter is the polished and best written section of the entire book, but I found that the further I traveled with Bianca Marshal, the more I enjoyed the smoothness of the prose.
As I said, this novel is historically rich including customs, apparel, social interactions and events. Several museums factor in and there is a wealth of great historical material covered. Spiritually, the novel is rich without being too preachy.
Even better than the history is the plotline and characters. This novel is full of some cat and mouse intrigue. One of the characters is a bit of a game player and the intensity of the simple story that could have been is ramped up with tension. My favorite character is the male lead and there were moments where I grew a little frustrated with Bianca as she struggled with him.
I’d love to see a sequel and I hope there is one in the works. There are situations I’d love to follow up on and think there is plenty of material to build on and come up with even a third book. I don’t want to drop any spoilers so I feel like I’m being vague. So here’s my bottom line. This is definitely a great read, a terrific Christmas present for a historical fiction fan, and I recommend it to those who love historicals.
Reviewed by: Kelly Klepfer