While Love Stirs by Lorna Seilstad
Visit Lorna's author website HERE
Publishing Date: April 29, 2014
After graduating from Fannie Farmer's School of Cookery in 1910, Charlotte Gregory is ready to stir things up. She is thrilled to have the opportunity to travel, lecture, and give cooking demonstrations on the very latest kitchen revolution--the gas stove--and certainly doesn't mind that the gas company has hired the handsome Lewis Mathis to perform at her lectures. Lewis encourages her work, especially her crusade to introduce fresh, appetizing, nutritious food to those convalescing in hospitals. But young hospital superintendent Dr. Joel Brooks is not convinced any changes should be made--especially by this outspoken young woman.I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. Buy it on your Kindle for $9.99 today! (5/22/19)
When Charlotte and Joel are coerced into planning a fund-raising gala for the hospital, will this combustible pair explode?
Fan favorite Lorna Seilstad is back with a breezy, lighthearted love triangle that will keep readers guessing. Attention to historic detail adorns the timeless story of a young woman looking for true love and making her way in a rapidly changing world.
When I saw a new Christian romance novel that was going to center around cooking, I figured it was written just for me. Revell has a history of publishing books I fall in love with and so I felt it was a safe bet to snatch this one up.
Right off the bat, I struggled getting into the story. Charlotte, our MC, and main man Joel meet right off the bat and instantly start fighting. I am a person who dislikes tension and conflict, so I was turned off by Charlotte's pride and Joel's antagonism. I didn't think I could relate to Charlotte, and I already didn't like her much, and so I struggled with whether I should continue reading the book. I pushed on because I already enjoyed Seilstad's writing style and loved the cooking aspects.
Luckily, as the novel continues Charlotte becomes more inclined to think before speaking and make apologies. I truly enjoyed seeing her mature and develop into someone who was more willing to think then react. However, it seemed Joel remained the same throughout the story. He was always flying off the handle and had hurtful words flying out of his mouth. It just seemed so...controlling to me. I almost started rooting for Lewis, the slick crooner and vague other love interest. I was sad to see that Joel's character never truly develops beyond this.
The plot itself was a mish mash of big, crazy events, the least of which is Charlotte and Joel planning a charity event together. I won't share any of the events, because it is so much more fun to discover them on your own, but each one on its own could have filled a whole novel. Put all together, they were almost overwhelming. Seilstad did a good job making it all work but never dwelling on any one event for too long, but then I felt kind of sad that we were missing out on details and depth of each one. Then, of course, the cooking aspect that I was so excited for, got lost in the crowded mix.
Seilstad made it all work though. I read the whole thing, enjoyed it, and even snagged book one while it was on sale a while back. While I did find some of it overwhelming, I think the characters felt realistic enough to carry me through to the end. All the pieces managed to fit together to tell one whirlwind of a story! I'd recommend it to fans of Christian romance that love Minnesota (Yay MN references!!), like a good dose of history, and appreciate some light cooking aspects. I am rating it with 3 stars out of 5.
Read any good Christian romance stories lately? Let me know in the comments; I am always looking for some good summer reads!