Siri Mitchell has taken the recipe for a romance novel and mixed it up in a way that makes a hard-to-put-down read. I started this book last night and finished it just a few minutes ago. One of the things I most appreciated about the book is that Siri has included quite a bit of her research in her author's notes and put the book into a context that even the most plebian cadet could understand.
So her recipe included
one swindler's daughter
six senior cadets (four belonging to the Immortals)
one uncle--a professor at the academy at West Point
a few historical figures
She has mixed them together in a totally methodical way to bring about a fully baked novel that is not too sweet, not too sour, but completely satisfying to the taste.
Lucinda got word that her father had passed away and left the boarding school to go to Buttermilk Falls, New York, where her mother's sister lived. She hoped that she could put her past behind her and live a respectable life. She hadn't counted on her uncle's match-making, or the fact that her father's shenanigans would follow her to Buttermilk Falls.
Seth Westcott's sister had been swindled by Lucinda's father and he was trying to get into the Cavalry so that he could find Lucinda's father and get his money back. Four of his friends were Immortals--the lowest in the class, and quite adept at planning and strategizing ways to get around the rules of the Academy. They pitched in all their ideas to help Seth become one of them.
Before I go too much farther with the summary, I have to say this book is one of the most fascinating I've read in a long while. Siri has worked into her book some popular notions of God from the days before the Civil War--one being that He is a judgmental, angry God, and the other being that He is a loving God who longs to be gracious to us. She has given us a look into the military life at West Point, especially the traditions and requirements of the cadet's life.
This is most definitely a five star book, two thumbs up, and a scheme to keep all your money.
My thanks to Bethany House for allowing me to read and review this book.