Saturday, February 28, 2009
Rebecca's Reward by Lauraine Snelling
publisher: Bethany House
Rebecca's Reward by Lauraine Snelling is a light ( almost juvenile at times ) historical about a young woman who has experienced countless sorrows---through which she picks herself up never abandoning her dream of opening an ice cream shop in Bismarck.
I have not actively read Snelling since I was in high school and she has stayed in her niche ----women of nordic origin: pioneering, struggling, finding love and deepening faith.
Snelling would do well to abandon the choppy, distracting dialect which plagues so many Christian novelists. She more than introduces the origins of her characters and this weak link detracts from her dialogue....
That being said, Snelling does have a good handle on dialogue: considering she uses full pages of it at a time ( most prominently in a scene between Rebecca and her female friends.... the eponymous "Daughters of Blessing" ).
I also really liked Gerald: Rebecca's romantic lead in a relationship is at first shrouded in friendship while Rebecca learns to believe in its ability to foster sterner connection.
One thing that particularly irks me about Christian historicals is the propensity to add extraneous birth or death scenes.... Rebecca's Reward is not an exception: a scratchy, whirlwind delivery scene is scrunched in by p. 60. I am also not fond of italicized prayers provided over-zealously. This novel boasts a few too many.
This is not Snelling's best. She is a competent writer, she just never quite hit the mark here.