Twenty-three years old. Over-the-hill? Past hope? Destined to be a spinster? Live life through the books she reads? It seems pretty young to give up, but Cate Miller has done just that. Lots of teasing, ineptness in the kitchen, and a broken heart have combined to make Cate feel she will never marry. She keeps busy in her father's shop and cares for her younger sister whom she's raised from birth. She's a bit, well, prickly.
Will the handsome young stranger who her father hires be able to convince her of his true interest? What exactly is Pete's true interest? He came to town saying he wanted to find a job and a bride. Pretty straight forward if you ask me. Not to Cate though.
Things get sticky when Cate's father declares an edict that Cate must marry first. Of course little sister puts more than a little pressure on Cate. This book just gets more and more tangled as new characters are introduced. Cate's temper is pushed to its limit as she tries to make sense of it all and just live her life as she wants to live it- as an old maid...or does she?
I enjoyed this book very much. It did, however, step on my toes a few times. As a child, I too, was teased a lot. I too felt ugly and unwanted. This set up a cycle of thoughts in my mind that were negative. That's what's going on with Cate. I recognized some of the thought processes. I'm more aware now when those thoughts begin in my mind. I really appreciate how Leslie Gould brought this aspect of relationships into the story. So much of our lives are lived within our own minds.
The story has a surprising but pleasing outcome. I always like happy endings, don't you? This one's worth your time. I give it about 4 stars. It's a good for a cold autumn or winter evening.
"When This Couple Gets to Courting, Sparks Will Fly!
In Paradise, Pennsylvania, Cate Miller is known more for her sharp tongue and fiery temper than her striking appearance. Her sweet and flirty sister, Betsy, on the other hand, seems to have attracted most of the bachelors in Lancaster County!
But the sisters' wealthy father has made one hard-and-fast rule: older Cate must marry first, before younger Betsy can even start courting. Unfortunately, untamable Cate has driven away every suitor-until Pete Treger comes to town, that is.
Prodded by the men of the area, Pete turns his attention to winning Cate's hand. But is his interest true or is there a scheme at play?
Book 1 in The Courtships of Lancaster County series.