Thursday, July 3, 2014

Captured by Love by Jody Hedlund Book Review

// Captured by Love //
Michigan Brides // Book #3
By Jody Hedlund
{Review Written by Bethany}
Publisher: Bethany House
Source: Review copy from the publisher
Genre: Christian Fiction
Number of Pages: 384
ISBN: 0764210491
Publication Date: July 1st, 2014
My Rating: Four out of five stars

Author Website // Author Bio
 Books Written by Jody/Purchase a Copy 
// Book Synopsis //
{Taken from GoodReads}
"It is 1814 and the British have taken hold of Mackinac Island and its fort, forcing American residents to swear an oath of loyalty to the British crown in order to retain their land. Pierre Durant is a voyageur--a fur trader who left his family home to find freedom and adventure. He's been gone five years and when he returns, his family's farm is at the mercy of the British invaders.
Torn between the life he's grown used to and guilt over leaving his brother and mother, he's drawn back into the loyalist fight against the British--and into a relationship with Angelique Mackenzie, a beautiful local girl who's been befriended by the daughter of the British commander. As tensions mount and the threat of violence increases, both Angelique and Pierre must decide where their loyalties rest, how far they will go to find freedom, and how much they will risk to find love."
// Book Review //
Ever since I heard that Jody was working on another novel, I knew I wanted to read it! I really enjoyed getting to read this novel and especially loved the last 100 pages. I also loved the main character Angelique's loyal character.
Captured by Love is the third book in the Michigan Brides series. However this series is made up of novels that completely stand alone, and aren't related to each other in any way, other than the place the story is set in. So for those who'd like to read this book but haven't read the other books in the series, it won't hinder the reading experience at all. 
Fans of Jody's lovely writing style full of historical detail will enjoy this novel. However I found that this novel didn't seem to have as many historical bits as previous books by this author did. I felt like all the historical details were in one chunk of the book during one particular scene that involved a lot of historical details, and the rest was just sprinkled details throughout the story. I found that while the book certainly did feature lots of history, it just wasn't to the level I'm used to and loved in Jody's previous books. However I still got a lot of neat historical details in Captured by Love, and enjoyed exploring the time period!
My favorite aspect of this novel was main character Angelique's personality. In the story she is faced with a difficult decision that she must make, as to who she will marry, since she is in very progressed relationships with two men. However, due to circumstances she is not sure which one she should marry. She has to choose between loyalty to the man she pledged herself to long ago, but hasn't seen in a long time, and the man whom she has known and befriended since she was a child. In the course of the story, she must decide if she should still honor her previous pledge to another man who is not present, continuing her loyalty to this man, or if she should follow her heart and marry the man whom she has been friends with since childhood.
This story involves  a very complex love-triangle, making for an interesting story that contains several unexpected twists! I really enjoyed seeing how the main character handled this decision, and really valued her character. She wasn't wishy-washy and didn't just throw away a promise she had made - even if it was promised long ago. Even when her views on someone seemed to have changed or got cloudy, she still maintained her promise and has such a loyal spirit, which really shined through at the end of the story. I just loved her character and though the development was wonderful! Her loyalty was such a refreshing theme in the story, and I really enjoyed that aspect of the novel!
While Captured by Love wasn't my favorite book by this author, I still enjoyed it a lot! But I feel like maybe the reason why it wasn't a favorite was due to several little things I found in the novel that I wasn't completely a fan of. One of those details was the romance and story-line. While both where well-done, I felt like at times the romance was a bit more detailed and descriptive than I'd have preferred, though never inappropriate. Also, the story-line often felt like the main theme was the love story, and I would have liked to see more sub-plots with other characters. While obviously the idea of the romance being the main story is to be expected, I was hoping to get to know some of the other characters better. While there was some other stories involving other characters in the book that were woven into the story, I felt like I would have enjoyed a bit more of that, versus the main attraction being on the main characters without any other themes. However it just depends on whether or not you like a lot of romance in the novels that you read, which will determine if you'd enjoy this book, or not so much.
In all I enjoyed this story. The beginning of the story felt a bit slow to me, however the last 100 pages and the superb ending made up for it! While I wished there were more sub-plots with the other characters, I did enjoy getting to know the main character and loved Angelique's loyalty. The history was very well-researched and involved neat details. I would definitely recommend this book to a friend, and hope you'll try it sometime if you enjoy historical fiction!
D I S C L A I M E R :: I received a free copy of Captured by Love from the publisher through the author, to be a part of the influencer team to promote this novel. I was not paid in any way to promote this book, and all thoughts expressed in the review were my own, completely honest and unbiased.

Special Announcement: Stay tuned for a special Captured by Love blog tour post featuring author Jody Hedlund and a Captured by Love book giveaway right here on The Literary Maidens in July! To check out all the blog tour stops, and view the tour schedule, click HERE.

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