Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko
About the book:
Tessa Taylor arrives in 1870s Upper Peninsula, Michigan, planning to serve as a new teacher to the town. Much to her dismay, however, she immediately learns that there was a mistake, that the town had requested a male teacher. Percival Updegraff, superintendent and chief mine clerk, says she can stay through winter since they won’t be able to locate a new teacher before then, and Tessa can’t help but say she is in his debt. Little does she know that Percival will indeed keep track of all that she owes him.
Determined to become indispensable, Tessa throws herself into teaching, and soon the children of the widowed lighthouse keeper have decided she’s the right match for their grieving father. Their uncle and assistant light keeper, Alex Bjorklund, has his own feelings for Tessa. As the two brothers begin competing for her hand, Tessa increasingly feels that someone is tracking her every move, and she may not be able to escape the trap that has been laid for her.
In this continuing story with the theme of lighthouses, we follow Tessa. I was intrigued by the story line, the rich history that Ms. Hedlund wove throughout the story made this a delightful book. The romance, well, for me, it seemed overdone or maybe a bit over the top when it came to describing eyes, body characteristics, and other mannerisms. I loved Tessa, and some of the other secondary characters. I have to say, I fell in love with Samuel and really wanted to follow his story a bit more. Ms. Hedlund did bring so many of these characters to life for me, and I did really enjoy the book. I wished the romance would have been better, but over all, it was really a good book.
The history of the mines, lighthouses, and other area features was a huge perk of reading this book and something that I think many historical fiction lovers will enjoy. I remember visiting a mining museum and seeing pictures of the long ladders that were in the mine that the miners, young or old could slip and fall off of while working. It sent shivers down my spine.
This book was provided for review by Bethany House and NetGalley. The opinions contained herein are my own.