Author: Allison Pittman
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction
Source: This was book was provided for review by WaterBrook Multnomah.
Tragedy hits the Allenhouse family when a mother of four vanished. Eight-year-old Vada virtually grew up overnight and raised her three younger sisters while her father lost himself in his medical practice in the basement of their home. Now, Vada is a grown woman, still making her home with her father and sisters. Her days are spent serving as an errand girl for Cleveland's fledgling amateur orchestra; her evenings with Garrison Walker, her devoted, if passionless, beau. Dizzying change occurs the day the Brooklyn Bridegrooms come to town to play the Cleveland Spiders and a line drive wallops the head of a spectator. The fan is whisked to the Allenhouse parlor, and questions swirl about the anonymous, unconscious man.
Suddenly, the sbudued house is filled with visitors, from a flirtatious, would-be sports writer to the Bridegrooms' handsome star hitter to the guilt-ridden ballplayer who should have caught the stray shot. The medical case brings Dr. Allenhouse a frustration and helplessness he hasn't felt since his wife's disappearance. Vada's sisters are giddy at the bevy of suitors. And Vada's life is awakened amid the super-charged atmosphere of romantic opportunity.
My Thoughts: I loved this book from the very first chapter. I grew up with a little brother, who I was always dressing up as a girl when he was little. I think it would've been grand fun to have three sisters, so I was able to live vicariously through the girls in this book. I was drawn to Vada immediately, probably because we're both first-born and with that comes expectations and responsibilities. Vada took over being a mom to her sisters when their mother left them and their father for another man. She never really was allowed to enjoy her teens and now she wonders if Garrison, her beau, really loves her. She wants passion and desire in her life and for a fleeting moment she may have found it in one of the baseball players from The Bridegrooms team. Each girl has her struggles and need for love. It's interesting to see just how different their personalities are, but how similar in their quest for real love. I've decided that I'm not going to categorize these books as "Christian" fiction. Instead, I feel that they are "gentle" reads. Don't write this one off as being a Bible thumping style of read...it is far from it. Instead, I think the author brought to life some terrific women who struggled with their wants, needs, and desires in the late 19th century. A time period when women were starting to be outspoken in their need to be heard and the right to vote. A time period when religion still played a huge role in the life of families. If you're looking for a great gentle read...then look no further. Pittman is an author I will certainly read again!!!