Book Review: In Name Only by Ellen Gable

In Name Only is my third book of Ellen’s that I’ve had the pleasure of reading and reviewing. You can read my review of Stealing Jenny here and Emily’s Hope here.

From the back cover:

“1876, Philadelphia. Caroline Martin’s life has finally taken a turn for the better. After years of hard work, she has met a virtuous and wealthy man whose love seems to promise the kind of life realized only within the comforting novels she keeps on her night table. Tragedy, however, will teach Caroline of the complexity with which God Himself authors the lives of those who turn toward Him.”

My comments:

I liked Emily’s Hope, I thoroughly enjoyed Stealing Jenny and I absolutely LOVED In Name Only. 🙂 It is definitely my favorite out of Ellen’s three books. (a BIG thanks to Ellen for offering me a Kindle copy of this book in exchange for the review. 🙂 )

In Name Only is a historical romance, set in 1876 Philadelphia, but it isn’t an ordinary historical romance. Many romances, including historical, are often smutty and makes me want to go to confession after reading them! That’s why I usually stick with Amish love-inspired novels, such as The Wonder of Your Love. Ellen’s book, however, is anything but smutty. It is a touching and engaging romance that captivates the reader from the very beginning.

Ellen does a wonderful job touching on human sexuality and the Catholic teaching on sexuality. It is direct but weaved into the story seamlessly. She also beautifully handles topics such as tragedy, miscarriage and confession.

The characters are realistic, human and interesting and I fell in love with all of them. I became lost in the book, completely drawn into the story as I ‘watched’ the different character relationships evolve; so much so, I stayed up WAY past my bedtime because I didn’t want to put the book down!

If there was one “negative” thing to say it would be that the storyline was a little predictable; BUT, almost all books are like that for me. I have this thing of always thinking of possible scenarios and can almost always predict what will happen next in a novel. Still, even being able to expect what will happen didn’t detract from the plot lines whatsoever. They were interesting, several times made me tear up, and the perfect complement to the characters’ lives in the story.

Finally, I hated for the book to end. I wish Ellen would bring Carolyn and David back in a sequel to this book! Please, Ellen?!

I give this book 4 (four) stars for sure. 🙂

Fearless Friday: Prayer for Those Trying to Conceive

Today I am dedicating this Fearless Friday for all those married couples who are seeking to have a baby. I confess this is rather personal and has been weighing on my heart for a long time.

My husband and I have been trying for another baby ever since our son, Andrew, was eight months old. We were hoping to give him a sibling that was close in age; but; alas, that wasn’t meant to be. Andrew is five, almost 5 1/2 years old and still no baby brother or sister.

Don’t get me wrong, I am so grateful for Andrew. He is a shining star in our lives and we love him dearly. I know that I am blessed to have him in my life and I can’t imaging living without him. Still, I can’t help but pray/wish that I could get pregnant again.

God’s wisdom is so far above us, and His will is best for us. In my head I understand all the practical reasons why the Lord may have kept us from getting another little blessing: unemployment/money issues, health issues, we were moving out of state, hubby was away for long periods and now I’m getting older. But, when Andrew pats my belly and asks: “Why doesn’t God give you another baby like other mommies?”, my heart aches.

God is ever faithful, and whether or not I ever have another child, I will bless His Holy Name. I know there are many women and families facing infertility, miscarriage, etc. and so I am praying for all of them. And if you are someone reading this blog who is in this situation, know that you are not alone and prayers are being sent up to heaven for you.

Prayer to Saint Gerard for Motherhood

O good St Gerard, powerful intercessor before God and wonder worker of our day, confidently I call upon you and seek your aid. On Earth you always fulfilled God’s designs, help me now to do the holy will of God. Implore the Master of Life, from whom all paternity proceeds, to render me fruitful in offspring, that I may raise up children to God in this life, and in the world to come, heirs to the Kingdom of His Glory. Amen.

(Prayer courtesy of praying4ababy.com)

St. Gerard, pray for us!