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Reviewed by Brenda Casto for Readers' Favorite
Katie Reed is reeling from the death of her husband, as well as her young son Kenny in a house fire, and is unsure how she will go on. Drew Richards has just lost his beloved wife Rachel during the birth of their second child, and knows the only way his newborn daughter will survive is if he can find someone to become her wet nurse, and the only person in town that can help is Katie. The only way that it can work is if she moves into Drew's home to take care of his newborn daughter Anne and his two year old son Joel. Katie soon becomes ingrained in the children's lives and they decide for the sake of the children that they should marry. Can a marriage for the children's sake ever work?
Sophie Dawson grabbed my emotions from the beginning pages with this story! She weaves together a tale of loss and heartbreak, but blends it well with hope, love and inspiration to make for a satisfyingly rich historical tale that was a real page turner for me. The story revolves around Katie Reed and Drew Richards and his children. The story unfolds so naturally that I felt as though I became a part of the characters' lives, feeling their hurts, shared in their grief but also glimpsed their love and strong faith in God. I felt true heartbreak not only for the main characters, but also for the people who loved Rachel. The solution seemed perfectly plausible and I enjoyed seeing the characters grow and move forward as the story progressed. One of my favorite characters had to be young Joel. His character was so endearing, and just seemed so realistic that the author even describes a temper tantrum that he has on his third birthday that was perfectly written. Ms. Dawson creates a story that certainly tugged at the heart, but balanced it well with instances of humor that gave me a few laughs. There are several citizens in town who are a vital part of the story, and keep the plot moving along. Mrs. Taylor was a stand out citizen. As the busybody in town her character reminded me of Harriet Olsen from "Little House on the Prairie!" There is also a bit of a mystery surrounding stolen items in town and that adds an extra element to the story. While "Giving Love" is the third book in the 'Cottonwood Series' the author provides plenty of background information so that it can be read as a stand alone story, but if you are a fan of historical inspirational fiction you are going to want to read all three books in this wonderful series. Filled with endearing characters whose stories beckon you to step back in time, each story in 'The Cottonwood series' leaves me feeling as if I have had a visit with long time friends and has me waiting anxiously for the next installment! Each story in the series has left me feeling blessed for having read it! I highly recommend this entire series!