Monday, May 6, 2013

The Heiress of Winterwood By Sarah Ladd Book Review

The Heiress of Winterwood (Whispers on the Moors, # 1)// T h e   H e i r e s s   
o f   W i n t e r w o o d //
W h i s p e r s   o n   t h e   M o o r s   B o o k   # 1
B y   S a r a h   E .   L a d d
R e v i e w   B y   B e t h a n y
Title: The Heiress of Winterwood
Author: Sarah E. Ladd
Source: Review Book
Number Of Pages: 320
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2013
My Rating: 4 Out Of 5 Stars 
Book Synopsis {Taken From GoodReads}:

"Pride goes before the fall . . . but what comes after?

Darbury, England, 1814

Amelia Barrett, heiress to an ancestral estate nestled in the English moors, defies family expectations and promises to raise her dying friend’s infant baby. She'll risk everything to keep her word—even to the point of proposing to the child’s father, Graham, a sea captain she’s never met.

Tragedy strikes when the child vanishes with little more than a sketchy ransom note hinting to her whereabouts. Fear for the child’s safety drives Amelia and Graham to test the boundaries of their love for this infant.

Amelia’s detailed plans would normally see her through any trial, but now, desperate and shaken, she examines her soul and must face her one weakness: pride.

Graham’s strength and self-control have served him well and earned him much respect, but chasing perfection has kept him a prisoner of his own discipline.

Both must learn to accept God’s sovereignty and relinquish control so they can grasp the future He has for planned for them."
// B e t h a n y ' s   R e v i e w //
When I first heard about this new novel that is the first in a series, I was super excited about it since I just adore regency historical fiction. I just love that time period and have always been quite enamored by historical novels set during this time-to which The Heiress of Winterwood was no exception!
This is Sarah's debut novel, but let me tell you that I wouldn't not even tell as I was reading this enchanting story and was shocked at how wonderful descriptive and exciting this novel was even though it was Sarah's first. It left me very eager to get my hands on book 2 when it releases!
This story is set in the 1800's in Darbury, England, where we first meet Amelia, our main character. In the epilogue we see Amelia with her friend who has just given birth to a baby girl, and after Amelia's friend takes her last breath, Amelia takes care of the baby girl and treats her as though she were her own flesh and blood. The baby's father was away at sea while his wife died, and by the time he hears news that he is a widower, his daughter is months old.
Amelia lost her father when she was young and lives with her Uncle and his wife and daughter, with whom Amelia considers a close confidant. Amelia's father left her their estate, Winterwood when he died but she will only inherit it once she turns of age and only if she is married. So she is in a pickle as time dissolves with her birthday approaching, and she is still unmarried. And so she meets with her friends husband, the baby's father and the story takes off.
This story was so exciting! I loved how it had a bit of romance, as well as mystery and was very descriptive, making it easy to imaging the breath-taking images of Darbury England. I loved how this book was centered around the baby left in Amelia's care. I found this very interesting and loved it, as children are not valued as much as I think they should nowadays {which you will already know if you have read any of my other reviews}, and this story brought a lovely story-line involving the baby without overdoing it, but still adding a lovely motherly touch. Plus it really brought out Amelia's mothering and tender side and her character. I loved how she did everything within her reach to take care for the baby, even if it meant not marrying someone who did not want to continue to care for the baby after their marriage. I found this to be a very admirable trait in her character, and it made me respect her and relate to her choices.
One of the highlights for me of the book is the Epilogue - which was a fabulous start to this novel. I just loved how Sarah entwined Psalm 23 into her friends dying and going to Heaven, and found it very unique. It made me see this Psalm in a different light, and I loved it. I loved how Christ was a part of this story and really enjoyed seeing the character's faith grow throughout the story.
I mentioned earlier how I liked the mystery involved in this book. I think it came at just the right time and helped to keep things from growing dull, and took some very interesting turns that I didn't see coming! It also made me re-evaluate the characters as they were all "suspects" and found that my earliest impressions of the characters were true to their character in the end.
Overall this was a sweet novel that I thoroughly enjoyed and would consider a must-read for all regency fans. I think Sarah did an excellent job with her debut novel, and I simply cannot wait until book #2 is released!
N o t e :: I would like to sincerely thank Sarah E. Ladd, and Thomas Nelson publishers for providing me with a free Kindle version of The Heiress of Winterwood to read and review. I was not required to give a good review, if I didn't like the book and to give my honest thoughts, which is what I've done. All thoughts are my own and completely unbiased.


  1. Sounds like a good read - thanks for the great review, Bethany! Perhaps one day I'll pick it up for reading. :)

  2. This sounds like a really good book. I'll have to look and see if my library has it. :)

  3. I fell in love with this book! And like you, I can't wait for book #2 to come out. :)


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