Title: Honor (Quaker Brides #1)
Author: Lyn Cote
Story Length: 368
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
This book is set in 1819, beginning in Maryland with Honor’s background and then following her to Pittsburgh where readers meet Samuel Cathwell, who is a young man who lost his hearing when he was eight years old due to a fever. His mother found out about sign language and taught him so he could communicate with his family. However, his hearing impairment has allowed him to close himself off from others and he has no friends and seems to like it that way. He works as a glassmaker in a factory in Pittsburgh, lives with his mother and young nephew. He has stopped going to Quaker meetings since his hearing loss, although his mother has remained active in her faith. Now a distant relative will be coming to live with them and his mother is in ill health. She tries to tell her son that she is dying, but he refuses to acknowledge this as fact. He has bought property in Ohio where he plans to move his family and start his own glassmaking business. His mother’s health and this newly arriving relative might cause him to delay his plans.
Honor Penworthy is a Quaker and has expected to inherit the family plantation for several years. Her plan is to free all the slaves and then sell the plantation and move to Pittsburgh. Upon her grandfather’s death though she discovers her plans have been changed for her. She still travels to Pittsburgh to her distant cousin’s home, but arrives in far different circumstances than what she had originally planned. Upon arriving and meeting her cousin for the first time, she immediately notices how ill her cousin is and the distance Samuel puts between himself and her. Her cousin soon dies, but before that happens she suggests Samuel and Honor marry as a means to provide him with someone to care for his young nephew while he starts his business and to provide a protector and provider for Honor. Honor has already begun to learn to sign so she can communicate with Samuel. As they reach Ohio, Honor soon discovers that while Ohio is a free state, the slaves really don’t enjoy much freedom. Honor has the heart of an abolitionist. Samuel doesn’t agree with slavery, but sees no way to abolish it.
This is a heart-warming story of two people who are strangers forced into a marriage of convenience. They must learn to communicate with one another, live together and trust each other through adverse circumstances. Honor commits to her marriage vows and doesn’t ever look back, a very admirable trait. Samuel, while keeping himself closed off initially, still protects and provides for Honor generously. He has kept himself at a distance to avoid rejection, which I’m sure we have all done a time or two in our lives. Keep in mind this is a Quaker book, so there are a few places where the Inner Light is talked about, which isn’t scriptural. I look forward to the next book in the series, being released in the summer of 2015. This is a solid start to a new series.
My rating is 4 stars.