BOOK REVIEW: In the land of Pendaran, lively, affectionate Shelby Parker was born to a simple life--yet her mother, Daria, and those around her cannot help but notice the grace she possesses. Among those taking note of Shelby's winsome ways and tender heart are the king and queen of the House of Markham, who are seeking a new wife for their widowed son, Prince Nikolai.
To uphold a long-cherished tradition of their country, Shelby and Nikolai agree to an arranged marriage. But while Nikolai is a perfect gentle man at public functions, he remains distant and shy at home, leaving Shelby to ponder the inner workings of his hear.t Will the prince ever love her as he did his first wife? Can the faith they share overcome the barriers between them?
MY REVIEW: I like stories about arranged marriages, mail-order brides, and the like. I like to read about the struggles they have and how they overcome them. I find them more interesting because they seem a little more realistic then the whole love-at-first-sight, living-happily-ever-after-with-no-problems stories that abound.
I know she is a fictional character, but I really admire Shelby. She is so self-less and full of caring that I find myself wishing I were more like her (again, I realize that she is fictional and such wishing is nonsensical). She is kind and sweet--my favorite personality to read about--and through the book, you can really tell that she loves all the people in her life and they all love her back.
I also like reading about kings and queens and that era. Of course, this is more modern, but I still enjoyed it. Something about the whole royal family is just fun to read about. In this book, the palace is made up of different quadrants--like different palaces all connected, I think--with the king and queen living in one, the king regent and queen regent in another, and Nikolai and Shelby int he third. I don't know but that there is yet another for balls and parties and such.
This is a fiction book, not one to read if looking for great spiritual truths and inspiration, but an enjoyable light read. I quite enjoyed it.