About the Book
Just as Amanda is torn from choosing between family and love and which side of the conflict she believes in, I was torn whether or not I liked this book. The pacing of this book felt off to me. I think that was due to too much going on in a book that didn’t have enough pages to give each element that time it needed to develop. Its strength is the historical context and detail, but its weakness is the believability of the relationships that are supposed to provide the tension and conflict of the story.
Amanda and Kent’s “romance” was based on a handful of encounters and limited conversations that was abruptly cut off at the start of the war. The two have no interaction or communication during the war until Kent appears at her home injured and sets up post. Their relationship for 2/3 of the book is benign at best and then steamrolls to a predictable conclusion that supplies satisfaction to the reader because there is no emotional investment in the outcome.
As I mentioned before, the definite strength of this book is the portrayal of the ideological tensions, the political rifts, and the historical facts of the Civil War. Washington, Amanda’s slave, facilitates a lot of contemplation for her character on the realities of slavery versus her previous naive perceptions. In this regard, Amanda’s character matures and develops.
**review copy provided by Thomas Nelson via Booksneeze**