Saturday, June 11, 2011

Her Mother's Hope

Her Mother's Hope

by Francine Rivers

Marta Schneider's father is determined that she won't be smarter than her brother, so he takes her out of school when she's 12 years old and sends her out to work to help support the family. Marta finds the work a relief to get away from her abusive father, and learns valuable skills in the process. She eventually opens her own boarding house in France, and meets her husband, Niclas Waltert. The two move to Canada and experience the struggles of farming. Soon they have 4 children, one of whom is Hildemara Rose, who becomes the main character in the middle of the book. Hildemara feels she can never do enough to please her mother, while Marta only wants her to be able to stand on her own two feet. Will Marta's and Hildemara's relationship eventually change? Will Hildemara be able to spread her wings and prove her strength?

I really enjoyed this book. Starting in turn of the century Switzerland and ending in post-World War II California, I had a hard time putting it down. I have to admit I struggled with Marta's character. I was sympathetic towards her in the beginning as she was escaping her father's abuse and forging her own way, but I had a difficult time sympathizing when she fought with her husband for dominance of the household, and treated Hildemara so cruelly. By the end of the book I understood her a bit more, but I am looking forward to reading the second and concluding book, Her Daughter's Dream, to find out if the two can repair their relationship.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys good historical fiction with a bit of romance.

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