Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Book Review: Courting Trouble by Deanne Gist

"Tired of waiting for a match made in Heaven, she'll settle for one made in Texas."


"It's 1894, the year of Essie's thirtieth birthday, and she decides the Lord has more important things to do than provide her a husband. If she wants one, she needs to cat him herself. So she writes down the names of all the eligible bachelors in her small Texas town, makes a lists of their attributes and drawbacks, closes her eyes, twirls her finger, and . . . picks one. But convincing the lucky "husband-to-be" will be a bit more of a problem."
(quotes from the back cover)

It's summertime and the reading is good :)

I just finished Courting Trouble by Deanne Gist, and I was very impressed!

The story covers about 8 months in the life of a 30-year-old single woman, Esther (Essie) Spreckelmeyer, in the small town of Corsicana, Texas in 1894. Essie is the only child of the town's judge, and beloved by almost everyone in her delightful little hometown.

This book is well-written and obviously, thoroughly well-researched; however, through the first few chapters I was afraid that I was not going to like it. This was mostly because I got that "I'm so embarrassed for you" feeling on almost every page reading about Essie's attempts to catch a husband. I should have realized that that was actually a very good sign - I was already emotionally connected to Essie.

Throughout the rest of the book, we follow Essie as she wrestles with God's plan for her life, and at some points, takes matters into her own hands - with some heartbreaking consequences. I'm pretty sure that the people at the laundromat thought I had lost my mind. There I was, folding clothes and reading simultaneously, and weeping as Essie and her family worked through some of the more serious issues together. (I'd make that a much better sentence, but I'd hate to give away the good parts :D)

This was such a beautiful story of God's grace and redemptive power in a person's life. It was also a wonderful, realistic look at how the choices we make effect everyone around us, not just ourselves. The author also did a fantastic job of looking at God's forgiveness and the importance of accepting His forgiveness by forgiving ourselves.

All in all a great, emotional read that I would highly recommend! I both shed some tears and laughed out loud, and I can't wait to get my hands on the sequel: Deep in the Heart of Trouble.

Hope you have a tremendous Tuesday!


  1. Katy Lin! I LOVE Deanne Gist! Her other historical fiction is wonderful, too. You also need to read "Beguiled" even though it's not historical. It's a collaboration with a suspense author and I couldn't put it down. : )

  2. I am so glad to find you and glad you joined The High Calling! I served as a summer youth minister for an American military church in Hanau, Germany back in the early '90s so I feel like we are kindred spirits! I look forward to getting to know you as you have time to read, network and comment on THC site and member blogs. :)


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