Sunday, January 11, 2009

Book Review: A Dry Creek Courtship

A Dry Creek Courtship by Janet Tronstad Love Inspired #459 Sep 08

This excellent book is the first book on my 2009 Top 10 list. I read it a week ago and I still get a warm, fuzzy feeling thinking about it. The author’s compassion shines through the pages. I’ve always liked her humor, and here she uses it to full advantage as Edith and Charley start to spread their arms in this, their freedom years.

Actually, my hubby decided he didn’t want to read it before he even started and just skimmed through it, reading, ‘here and there’. And why didn’t he like it? Because he said it’s about ‘old people’. I looked at him and said they were just a couple years older than us and we still have love and have passion for each other – at least if last night was any mind that...what I wanted to say was - what does age have to do with love?

It’s all in the storytelling and this author writes with just as much feeling, tension and conflict as any other LI book on the market. The year before last, I read an LI book with the H/h in their late 40’s and I was bored out of my mind. Thank goodness I wasn’t doing reviews then!

In this book, the author weaved a sweet love story and pulled me along by my heartstrings. I ached when the normally assertive Edith realizes that she loves her best friend, Charley but how can she tell him? You just don’t look across the table at a man who’s been your platonic friend for over 30 yrs and in between sips of tea announce you’d like to up the level of affection in your relationship because if you do and he doesn’t feel the same, sure as rain he won’t be coming to sip tea in your kitchen any longer. Men get kind of weird when they get emotionally uncomfortable, you know?

But lately Charley hasn’t been coming around for meals anyway. And Edith has the feeling he was trying to get up the nerve to tell her something important. It’s traditional for Charley to pick a bucket of chokecherries and bring it to her to turn into jelly but when he doesn’t show up and the season’s almost over, she begins to think that maybe his mind is occupied with some other woman and he’s already fading from her life.

And what about Charley? He’s a widower and when Edith’s husband died, it was a natural progression to become her handyman and do the jobs around the house that a husband would do. That’s what friends do.

Charley has a secret, however. He doesn’t just want to take care of her house, he wants to live with her inside it.

But, Edith is a very determined woman who knows her own mind. She doesn’t take guff from anyone. If he confesses that he wants to up their relationship level, she just might break off their friendship. It wouldn’t be hard to find some other willing man to help her.

And actually, Edith went and got her hair cut. First time since he’s known her, she doesn’t wear it in a bun any longer. It kind of frames her face now in a soft feminine way. Why would she get a new hairstyle unless...she was sprucing up for a man?

Charley doesn’t mind change. After all, he’s been trying to convince Edith to trade in her old car which was a gift from her husband for a newer model. But when he sees her driving down the street in a convertible with the top down, Charley starts to get nervous. And it doesn’t help that the guys down at the hardware store are talking about her. When one of the guys goes to Charley for advice on courting Edith, Charley has to decide if he thinks Edith would be happier with him or someone else. It sure would help if she gave him some indication...

Heat Level: Affectionate

My Rating: Excellent - 5 stars (one to re-read; Top 10 list)

2009 Harlequin 100,000 Book Challenge: 2 books read

Harlequin Imprint: 2, Others: 0

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