A Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund
Let me start by saying I can tell how time and research Jody Hedlund put into this story. I started the book knowing next to nothing about German immigrants in Michigan during this time period and the author did a wonderful job of informing without taking away from the beautiful story. This was my first read by this author and now I cannot wait to dive into her previous three novels.
A Noble Groom is the story of Annalisa Werner, a young widow with a lot on her plate and Carl von Reichert, an entitled nobleman with secrets to keep. When her husband is found murdered, Annalisa is left with a infant daughter to raise, crops to be planted and a short amount of time to pay off the large loan on her farmland. Carl is sent by her uncle to help keep the farm afloat while hiding from false murder charges.
To say Carl is unused to manual labor would be an understatement! He starts the novel with a great deal of pride in his status and feels as though farm work and these people are beneath him but, he grows so much during his time with Annalisa.
Annalisa has always been meek and obedient, everything she thinks a woman ought to be. She may tell her daughter plenty of fairytales but she’s given up on real love. Carl’s views on women and his treatment of her and her daughters are completely different from anything she’s ever known. She grows a great deal as a character as well and eventually finds the strength to stand up for herself and open herself up to love.
This is an absolute must read and just may find itself on my best reads of 2013 list!