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Monday, September 17, 2012

Unending Devotion

For Lily Young, her search will never tire. She will continue to search every single town and saloon with no danger too great for her to bare along with Oren, an elderly photographer she travels with as his assistant take pictures of shanty workers for money. Even though she's been searching for her runaway younger sister Daisy whom she believes now works in a saloon for money, she vows she will continue to search for her, no matter how long it takes. Even if she can't save her sister, Lily finds God's calling in her life to help any of the young girls that are looking to escape the life of prostitution and working for saloon owners who will do anything it takes to ensure that their girls stay put. Most of the time it involves taking their shoes and outer clothing now that winter has set in, but Lily is on a mission and no matter how long it takes she will never give up her unending devotion to find her sister.

As Oren and Lily arrive in the town of Harrison, Michigan just as winter is setting in, she finds herself the center of attention when she enters the Northern Hotel being one of just four hotels in Harrison with temperance leanings. Only when she enters, she finds the dining room filled to capacity with more shanty men staring at her as if they had never seen a woman before. But Lily knew she was a rarity in any lumber town, only in that she wasn't up on the table dancing in her skimpies. When she asks Mrs. Heller if there are any rooms available, more than one of the men are too willing to offer her a free place to stay with them.

It isn't until a struggle ensures between Jimmy, a drunken shanty man and another one wanting to lay claim to Lily that Connell McCormick rises to put an end to this public tug of war using Lily as a rope between the two. But Lily can stand on her own two feet and since the men apparently have taken their shoes off to allow their boots to dry, she takes the liberty in measuring out her own form of discipline on their stocking feet with her own boots. She is immediately thrown into the arms of Connell and they land in a heap on the floor tangled in a line of drying socks by the fire. It seems that this is just the beginning of the many such entanglements between Lily and Connell while she remains in town. Will Lily find more than just a search for her sister in the town whose nickname is Hell's Waiting Room? Or will Lily find herself trapped in more ways than one in the town of Harrison?

I received Unending Devotion by Jody Hedlund compliments of Bethany House Publishers and Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review. Since this is one of my preferred genre's, I couldn't wait to read this book and was immediately captivated by the characters that Jody created. I could completely understand the impatience of Lily Young who senses the more time that has gone by the greater the urgency becomes to find and save her sister before it's too late. She always wants to do the right thing, even if it means going it alone despite all the dangers. Eventually however, all those impulse responses gets Lily in more trouble than she bargained for and almost cost her, her life! I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars because it kept me interested without the lulls you find in some novels. Jody did an exceptional job at keeping the reader engaged with non stop action as the search for her sister continues through the novel and the romantic tension develops between her and Connell. For those that love a bit of spicy western romance, then this is the one for you!

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