Friday, May 16, 2014

Love's Awakening by Laura Frantz

Love's Awakening (The Ballantyne Legacy, #2)


The path to true love lies somewhere between two feuding families
In the spring of 1822, Ellie Ballantyne leaves finishing school and returns to the family home in Pittsburg only to find that her parents are away on a long journey and her siblings don't seem to want her to stay. Determined to stand her ground and find her place in the world, Ellie fills her time by opening a day school for young ladies.
But when one of her students turns out to be an incorrigible young member of the Turlock family, Ellie knows she must walk a fine line. Slaveholders and whiskey magnates, the Turlocks are envious of the powerful Ballantynes and suspicious of their abolitionist leanings. As Ellie becomes increasingly entangled with the rival clan--particularly the handsome Jack Turlock--she finds herself falling in love with an impossible future. Will she betray her family and side with the enemy?

My Opinion:

This book was good but not as great as I thought it would be. I liked many things about it, but on the other hand I was also annoyed by other aspects.

I felt like the "misunderstood" younger daughter and "rude" older sister roles were repeated from the first book in the series. I expected a little more diversity in the personalities of the characters. I also thought it was odd how the Ballantynes and Turlocks were "mortal enemies", but yet it was so easy for the Ballantynes to lay disagreements and differences aside so quickly. Ellie and Jack basically HATE each other for most of the book, but then unannounced they both have a change of heart and are confessing each others love for one another. I was a little lost, wondering if I might have by accident skipped a part in the book where they actually became close, but I didn't.

I did however like how Laura brought Jack's good qualities to light in the book. The Turlocks' were known to be heartless human beings, including Jack, and for a little bit I actually believed it. As I read I realized that those assumptions were completely farce. He had a soft side for his little sister and though he acted like he didn't like helping out runaway slaves, you realize that that is also an act. Jack had such a kind heart, it had just been abused by his parents and so he felt nonredeemable.

Altogether, this book was good, but it's not one that I would jump up and down for.

Rating: 3 Stars

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