Thursday, February 26, 2009

Review: The Measure of a Lady


If you have been reading this blog for very long, you will have noticed that I don't like preachy novels. As I was reading this one, I was composing a less than flattering review in my head. The Measure of a Lady is basically a romance novel set in Gold Rush San Francisco. The heroine, along with her brother and her sister, are there because their father, who died on the ship, took them from their home to seek his fortune. She is a Godly, Christian woman who is determined to remain respectable, and to keep her siblings respectable too. The hero is the owner of the saloon/gambling hall who hires her as a cook and housekeeper. Being a good Christian, she has issues with the way he earns a living. Unfortunately, while she works hard to open and run an honest business, her siblings prefer the easy life. Her sister moves in with man without benefit of marriage and her brother becomes a dealer in a gambling hall.

During most of the book the heroine is an insufferable intolerant judgmental proper Christian. I just knew that she'd remain that way and get the guy to change, in the end. Well, he does change, but so does she. She goes from not being willing to serve prostitutes in her restaurant to running a home for those who want to escape prostitution.

I enjoyed the book. The heroine did a lot of growing up. She didn't change her morals and values but learned that being insufferable only means that people aren't going to want to be with you. She learned that even notorious sinners can have good sides.

Obviously the book is Christian fiction. It is not one of those books that I could say with reasonable confidence "It is a good book and while there are faith elements, even non-Christians could enjoy the book". Rather, it is a nice wrapping for an obviously Christian lesson.

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