This is an intriguing novel that begins in the bitter cold winter in Minnesota with our heroine attending one of their Belgian mares as she struggles to give birth. She got my heart in the first paragraph.
The story contains interesting references to the German and Swedish cultures throughout, which adds to the delightful tale. The family’s ice cutting business held a fascination for me and gave me a clearer understanding of life in the late 1800’s. Like many other readers, I’d never realized that, back in the day, ice was obtained in that way. (Read the book to find out.)
Ms. Peterson is an expert word painter whose vivid prose readily invites you to enter into the world of her story. The characters are well-developed and one will easily be enchanted by the hero and heroine while fittingly disliking the antagonists.
This was one book I had a hard time putting down. The pacing was just right, and the plot with interesting twists held my attention to the end. This one is definitely on my recommended reading list.
Merrill Krause possesses all the characteristics of a good wife and mother, only she’s all but given up on that dream. Caring for her father and brothers for the last ten years, her life is full. Now that she’s reached the ripe old age of twenty, she feels some are beginning to consider her a spinster. Merrill shies away from the pampered, frilly persona expected of ladies of that day, and she remains a woman of strength, virtue, and compassion.
Rurik Jorgenson is a man of gentle strength, and is not easily intimidated by anyone, least of all Merrill’s brothers. Thinking this journey to help his uncle Carl in his cabinet business is temporary, he soon finds that there are more reasons than one to consider remaining in Minnesota.
Granny Lassiter takes care of everyone, and Merrill holds a special place in her heart. She is the one person to whom Merrill can go to bare her heart and get trusted, Godly, feminine advice. Granny and cousin Corabeth are trying to convince Merrill to “gussy up” a bit and see if they can find a suitable match for her.
Nils Olsson and Rurik’s were best friends growing up back in Kansas. What is it that prompts Nils to take advantage of that friendship and pressure Rurik to become business partners?
Svea Olsson has marriage on her mind. Marriage to Rurik. What secret does she hold that motivates her to take advantage of his integrity and make an outrageous claim that initiating a scandal that will only hurt the one she claims as her own.
Tracie Peterson has just been added to my favorite authors list. Having written more than ninety-five novels, she begins a new series, “Land of Shining Water” with The Icecutter’s Daughter. I can hardly wait to read the rest of the series.
A member of American Christian Fiction Writers, she was awarded their Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011. She has won numerous other awards and currently writes exclusively for Bethany House.
To learn more about Tracie and her books, visit www.traciepeterson.com.