Like many others who live in the area, I am a transplant to Nashville, TN. I have lived here sixteen years this summer but never attended elementary or secondary school here so, while I am familiar with many of the historic sites around the area, I don’t actually know a lot of the history. I feel like I learned a little more about my new home (and Belmont Mansion) when I read Tamera Alexander’s second stand alone novel in her Belmont Mansion series, A Beauty So Rare.
Eleanor Braddock’s world is changing. Her father’s illness has caused her to make some hard decisions, including how best to care for him, and relying on her aunt, Adelicia Acklen Cheatham, to support her. Eleanor has not disillusioned about her future, she knows she is not beautiful, and at thirty, will not find a husband. But Eleanor has a dream that she would like her aunt to help her with. That dream morphs into something much bigger than Eleanor, or her aunt for that matter, could ever imagine. Marcus Geoffrey is a man who wants to escape his past, and his heritage, a man who wants to make his own way. Marcus is a very handsome man who is used to women falling over themselves to be near him, but has never had a friendship with a woman. He is intrigued by Adelicia’s niece who is not taken in by his looks upon their first meeting.
Eleanor Braddock is most definitely someone the reader cheers for. You ache for her as she is dealing with her father, and love her for serving those less fortunate, you want her to find true happiness. Her dislike of pink and her forthrightness make her that much more loveable.
Alexander does a terrific job of weaving fiction with history in A Beauty So Rare (absolutely love the title of this book, by the way) and I was quickly engrossed in the story. Once I met Eleanor and Marcus I didn’t want to put the book down until I found out how their stories ended. And now that I’ve finished the book, I keep thinking about them, and want to go back and re-read parts of their story. That is always a sign of a good book for me. Stay tuned this month for more exclusive content from the author of A Beauty So Rare
****Bethany House Publishers provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review. I was not compensated in any way for either a negative or a positive review.