Friday, October 11, 2013

Fiction Review: A Talent for Trouble

Felicia Murdock firmly believed her destiny was to become a minister's wife. When the minister on whom she had set her sights marries another lady, Felicia is forced to take a close look at her life and comes to a few uncomfortable conclusions. Determined that something needs to change--and soon--Felicia discovers she is finally ready to spread her wings and embrace life the way she's always wanted.

A Talent for Trouble

Turano, Jen (2013). [Genre: Historical, Inspirational]

Goodreads|Book Depository

Thanks to Bethany House for providing an advanced reader copy of this title. All opinions are my own.

I've been thoroughly enjoying Jen Turano's 'Ladies of Distinction' series thus far. Set in 1800's America, I've been enjoying seeing the characters develop as the series progresses. I love a series where the characters reoccur and secondary characters in previous novels become main characters in their own. This time it's the turn of Felicia Murdock, who up until now has been a background character that stands out mainly because of her peculiar dress sense. In A Talent for Trouble we discover that the dress sense, and indeed most of Felicia's 'character' was an attempt to attract the attentions of a minister she thought she was destined to marry. . . who has just married someone else. 

Unfortunately, I didn't find Felicia as compelling as the heroines in the previous two Ladies of Distinction novels. Although Felicia undoubtedly has a kind and generous spirit, a trait not often well portrayed in novels, for me it was ruined by transferring her affections in a blink of an eye and adapting her character to match. After abandoning the minister, she decides she needs to take some time to reaffirm who she is for herself. . . but VERY quickly transfers her attentions to someone else. Although it was obviously meant to feel like the hero, Grayson, was a match for Felicia's true character, her feelings transferred so quickly it felt very much like she was simply changing her character to match the new man. Extremely disappointing considering both Eliza and Arabella were strong characters who stood up for their sense of self.  

Like the previous two novels, the ending of A Talent for Trouble was paced too fast and became rather over dramatic. I'm not sure if it was more so than the others, or if it just annoyed me more because I wasn't enjoying Felicia's character as much. 

BUT, A Talent for Trouble was still a fun read. Turano has a talent for fully fleshed characters and believable dialogue. It wasn't a bad book, just not as good as the previous two. I'm looking forward to the next installment, which I sincerely hope is about Agatha and Zayne. They've been dragged along for three books now, it's time they got a story of their own. 

3/5 stars

A Talent for Trouble is available now.

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