Review: Courting Miss Adelaide by Janet Dean
Title: Courting Miss Adelaide
Author: Janet Dean
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What's it about?
Miss Adelaide Crum is a strong, intelligent, independent business woman who just happens to be 30 years old in 1897. Calling home the apartment above her shop, Adelaide was raised by a bitter, less than affectionate woman who taught her to depend on no one other then herself, least of all a man. Now that Adelaide is alone after the loss of her mother, she stays true to the teachings her mother left her, yet she longs to provide love to a little girl of her own. Eager to build her own little family, Ms. Crum requests to be given custody of an orphan off of the next "orphan train" but the men on the committee aren't as enlightened as she is.
Charles Graves is fairly new in town, but that hasn't stopped him from making a good impression. As the new editor of the newspaper, Charles works hard to share the facts and relies on proof. He, too, has felt the loss of his parents but has found pride in helping his brother's widow and their two children keep their feet on solid ground. But, even surrounded by those he loves the most, his past haunts him, the abuse of his less than perfect childhood leave unhealed scars, Scars Charles is sure will never heal.
Through a series of coincidences and design, their two lives will collide in an explosive way! As the two get to know each other, challenging one another every step of the way, they learn that their differences may not be as big as they thought, family comes in many forms, dreams can come true and trust is among the most important features of any functional relationship. It's a wild ride as Adelaide finds her own voice and empowers herself to use it while juggling her own mini, yet temporary family at home around cruel farmers, possible murders, unexpected inheritance and a town of people (mostly men) who are not ready to join the women suffrage bandwagon just yet. But somehow, (could it be her faith in God?) the two find themselves falling head over heals for one another along the way. But will they be able to protect two of the orphans from an abusive home the children find themselves in in the process?
Characters: This is one of those times in which I think my favorite characters are actually the two main characters. I'm a sucker for strong, independent women with heart, and Adelaide proves to be that! While there's no denying that she manages to get into her own way at times, she manages to catch her footing and keep going. She knows what's important to her and fights for it, even if those around her do not agree and even when the going gets tough, she keeps going.
Personally, I'm not a religious person, so I tend to shy away from strong religious works, and I didn't realize how much religion would play a role in this story, but, I must admit, it wasn't as strong as I thought. I felt like the religion aspect was a natural part of who Adelaide was. Of course, she prays and she asks God for help, but it's not usually in your face, either. There are times in which she seems to toe the line (in my opinion) but then holds back, reminding herself that it's not her place.I respected that.
Charles was a slightly different case all together. He wasn't the typical male you'd expect to find in a book of this time. He wasn't overly masculine and he didn't want to squash Adelaide's independence. He believed in Adelaide and believed she could do anything she wanted. He even listened and, generally, agreed with her "women are equal" attitudes in a time in which that was not common belief. I really liked that about him. What I found myself slightly annoyed about was that, while he didn't try to silence her, he also didn't want to be a part of the movement. I do understand that, at some points, he was trying to protect Adelaide, but I wish he would have spoken out more often in defense of Adelaide and other women.
Least favorite Character: This is easy. Ed. he's my least favorite by far. I understand that he's been through a lot, and I feel bad for that, but he radiates misery, anger and, let's just say it, hate. He seems to suck the happiness out of any situation he's involved in and that's just sad and pathetic.
Favorite Part: I think my favorite part was between Charles and Adelaide. It's the scene when Ms. Crum catches Charles walking Fannie (a "friend" of both Charles and Adelaide) out of the Newspaper office and she kisses him. Her emotions go haywire and she tries to deny it to even herself but Charles sees right through her...and jumps on the chance to tease her about it. It was fun, lighthearted and humorous.
Least favorite parts: Any of the parts relating to abuse. Now, these parts were necessary, I know. They absolutely were driving forces to the development of the characters I really liked, so I'm not saying these parts shouldn't be there because they absolutely played a role in the story, but I'm not a fan of abuse in general (crazy, right?) those parts were a little dark so, if my favorite parts were the lighthearted upbeat parts, then my least favorite were the opposite. (in reality, I don't think there was a part I really disliked, though).
Favorite Quote: These word were said to Charles by his Sister-in-Law. While she was talking about Charles's hesitation to have a relationship with Adelaide, I think it applies to so much more in life. "What you want is a guarantee. There's no guarantees with love. No guarantees for anything worth having. Like my boys out there."
I want to give a shout out to my Aunt Rhonda. This book was among boxes she had donated to the store and she recommended it to me. She raved about it, even, and, to be honest, I was a little unsure of it. But when I opened the books I found a sweet story that were repeatable and fun, though true to their time. It was a fun read and, though I don't think I'd read it again and a gain, I truly did enjoy it!
What do I rate this book?
I give this book a
3 out of
But that's just what I thought! Have you read this book? Tell uswhat you thought!