Tuesday, September 18, 2012

"By the Light of the Silvery Moon" by Tricia Goyer: Book Review

By the Light of the Silvery Moon is a historic novel during 1912.  The story evolves around the Titanic and a trip across seas. 

Amelia was an idyllic young woman whose life revolved around serving others.  She had a love for God that she shared by serving others in need.  Her past had been difficult.  She lived with a kind elderly aunt who had cared for her since her mother had left to work as a ship maid when she was but a young girl.  Although assured by her mother that she would be back, Amelia never saw or heard from her mother again.  These events helped to shape Amelia into the compassionate person that she was.

Amelia was bound for American on board the Titanic.  She was headed across seas to meet a suitor who she had been writing to for many months.  Although she had never met him personally, he had bought her a ticket along with a ticket for her aunt and brother.  At the last minute, her brother was unable to make the trip, and as was her character, she gave the ticket to a young vagabond in need.

Quentin Walpole, unbeknownst to Amelia, was the once affluent son of a wealthy American businessman.  In a story similar to the Biblical parable of the Prodigal’s son, Quentin had left his home, spent his riches and young life in wonton living, and now had nothing but sorrows to remind him of his past.  It was in this setting that Amelia and Quentin meet.  A friendship ensues and she compassionately reminds him of Christ’s love and forgiveness, and the love and forgiveness waiting him at the hands of his father and estranged brother, Damien.

As circumstances would have it, Quentin’s father and brother are indeed aboard the Titanic.  Quentin’s heart begins to soften, until he sees his need of Christ’s forgiveness and that of his father and brother.  His father is elated, plans to throw a lavish party inviting everyone on the boat, but his brother is jealous and angry with the sudden appearance of the brother who had spend half the inheritance and had embarrassed the family.

As one expects from a romance novel, Amelia and Quentin fall in love, but so does Damien!  Amelia is drawn to the once down-and-outer rather than the wealthy other son. 

The story was enjoyable and entertaining, but I had hoped for a little more history and less romance.  The story at times became a little shallow as the romance developed.  I also thought that some of the characters were less than realistic.  Amelia comes across as one of almost perfect character that is able to solve other people’s problems.  She always has the wisdom and right advice to give to others in need.  Damien’s character is left as wealthy, proud, and unforgiving, but less than developed, while Quentin is portrayed as the true Prodigal’s son, once a tramp, now forgiven and right with God and father.

At this point in the story, the Titanic hits the immense iceberg and begins to sink.  The “unsinkable” is sinking.  Many lives are lost; some are saved. It was a simple, charming story of forgiveness and redemption. (Reviewed by S.Fincannon)

Author Bio:  Tricia Goyer is the author of thirty books including Songbird Under a German Moon, The Swiss Courier, and the mommy memoir, Blue Like Play Dough. She won Historical Novel of the Year in 2005 and 2006 from ACFW, and was honored with the Writer of the Year award from Mt. Hermon Writer's Conference in 2003. Tricia's book Life Interrupted was a finalist for the Gold Medallion in 2005. 

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