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|Print List Price:||£9.00|
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Teapots & Tiaras: A sweet and clean Christian romance in London and Cambridge (Love In Store Book 5) Kindle Edition
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
(Though reviews are inherently subjective, I prefer to provide some organization to my opinions through the use of a personal rubric. The following notes may contain spoilers.)
Plot and Setting: 4 -- Plot has unique elements and no major holes, but a few shaky bits. The first third or so is rather repetitious, with them enumerating over and over the same reasons why the other is not a suitable match. Then finally we start seeing some changes in beliefs and attitudes that allow for new ideas in their interactions, and things improve. I do like Matthew's very Darcy-ish flubbed proposal, and was pleased that the epilogue was not their own rushed wedding. Setting is clear and believable. Timeline may be a bit hard to follow. I don't recall any mention of specific dates or times, leaving it unclear when things happen. It's in warm weather, and Matthew's in England for about a month before they are engaged, and anything else is really vague.
Characters: 4 -- Main characters are relatable, realistic, interesting, and dynamic. Matthew's issues stem from his very misguided, authoritarian grandfather. Anita's issues stem from being abandoned as an infant. They both need to adjust their views of God and love as a result. Some minor characters have depth, while others may be slightly stereotyped or simplified. Some minor characters seemed vaguely familiar (I have also read book 3 in the series), but I didn't get as a good picture of them as I expect I would had I read the whole series. Definite strong points in the relationships between characters. Daisy in particular inspires strong emotional connections from both Anita and Matthew.
Mechanics and Writing: 4.5 -- Few, if any, typos or word errors. Though it's written in definitely British English, so there were things that jumped out to me as wrong, but were in fact correct, just not the American spellings, etc. Good use of POV (Anita and Matthew). Generally skillful writing.
Redeeming Value: 5 -- Well-developed, central, uplifting themes. Both Anita and Matthew have lingering issues from childhood that affect their views of God, themselves, and love. Anita learns to accept the strength of God's love, and to risk being hurt in order to love. Matthew learns that God is not the perpetually dissatisfied taskmaster that his grandfather claimed. He learns that God is an approachable, loving friend, and takes steps to humble himself and the family Trust in healthy ways. Sex, alcohol, violence, etc, are not glorified/present at all. I also appreciated the inclusion of the full Bible verses with their references as a sort of appendix at the end, with a note about one that Matthew interpreted incorrectly out of context.
Personal Enjoyment: 4.5 -- I loved it. It made me feel in all the best ways, and leaves me content and satisfied. I’d enjoy reading it again.
I'm glad I had the opportunity to read this book -- normally I don't buy books by authors I don't know, but this was in the boxed set Whispers of Love with Valerie Comer (a favorite contemporary author) and I bought the collection for Ms. Comer's new book. Boxed sets are a good way to get to know new-to-you authors and I would look for more by Ms. MacArthur when I need a new book to read.
A great story.
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