“Undaunted Hope,” by Jody Hedlund

I recently had the chance to read Undaunted Hope, by Jody Hedlund. This fiction book was published on January 5, 2016, by Bethany House.

About this book (from the back cover):

Tessa Taylor arrives in 1870s Upper Peninsula, Michigan, planning to serve as a new teacher to the town. Much to her dismay, however, she immediately learns that there was a mistake, that the town had requested a male teacher. Percival Updegraff, superintendent and chief mine clerk, says she can stay through winter since they won’t be able to locate a new teacher before then, and Tessa can’t help but say she is in his debt. Little does she know that Percival will indeed keep track of all that she owes him.

Determined to become indispensable, Tessa throws herself into teaching, and soon the children of the widowed lighthouse keeper have decided she’s the right match for their grieving father. Their uncle and assistant light keeper, Alex Bjorklund, has his own feelings for Tessa. As the two brothers begin competing for her hand, Tessa increasingly feels that someone is tracking her every move, and she may not be able to escape the trap that has been laid for her.

Final Verdict:

The best thing about this book was the setting. Hedlund really researched her location, and it shows in all the details she provides. Unfortunately, the story itself is just okay. To me, the very thin plot seemed to just be there to orchestrate opportunities for the two main characters to be alone together, and while the main character protests (too much) that she is not interested in getting married and that she is very worried about keeping up her reputation, she “accidentally” finds herself alone with a handsome assistant lightkeeper a great deal more than would probably have been acceptable during that time period. This is book three in the “Beacons of Hope” series, but I felt it stood alone perfectly, and I didn’t find that I had missed out on anything having not read the previous books in the series. I have really enjoyed some of Hedlund’s previous books, such as Unending Devotion and An Uncertain Choice and would recommend those over this one.

If you’d like to check out Undaunted Hope it is currently on sale for $9.50 for the Kindle version. (Regularly $14.99.) If you prefer a paperback copy, it’s currently on sale for $10.00. Remember, Amazon’s prices can change at any time.

The featured product for this review was provided to me at no cost by Bethany House. All opinions expressed are my own. This site is an Amazon affiliate, and purchases made through Amazon links (including linked book covers) may result in my receiving a small commission (at no additional cost to you). If you’d like to sign up to receive review copies from Bethany House, visit www.bethanyhouse.com/bookreviewers.

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