The Wedding Dress. Finished audio 11-12-14, rating 4/5, Romance, pub. 2012
Unabridged audio read by Eleni Pappageorge.
Four brides. One Dress.
A tale of faith, redemption, and timeless love.
Charlotte owns a chic Birmingham bridal boutique. Dressing brides for their big day is her gift . . . and her passion. But with her own wedding day approaching, why can’t she find the perfect dress…or feel certain she should marry Tim?
Then Charlotte discovers a vintage dress in a battered trunk at an estate sale. It looks brand-new-shimmering with pearls and satin, hand-stitched and timeless in its design. But where did it come from? Who wore it? Who welded the lock shut and tucked the dog tags in that little sachet? Who left it in the basement for a ten-year-old girl? And what about the mysterious man in the purple vest who insists the dress had been “redeemed.”
Charlotte’s search for the gown’s history-and its new bride-begins as a distraction from her sputtering love life. But it takes on a life of its own as she comes to know the women who have worn the dress. Emily from 1912. Mary Grace from 1939. Hillary from 1968. Each with her own story of promise, pain, and destiny. And each with something unique to share. For woven within the threads of the beautiful hundred-year-old gown is the truth about Charlotte’s heritage, the power of courage and faith, and the timeless beauty of finding true love.
In 2008 I read my first inspirational romance and it just happened to be by Rachel Hauck. I liked it and even interviewed her in 2009 (here). I knew I wanted to read more by her but until til haven’t managed to do it. I picked this one up at a book sale a few years ago because I thought the cover was so pretty and the book pretty much lived up to the beauty of the cover.
Charlotte has a gift. She can help a bride choose just the perfect wedding gown for their weddings and she has made a very successful business doing it. With her own wedding day fast approaching, not only has she not even searched for her own wedding dress, but the wedding invitations still sit in a box on her floor collecting dust. Charlotte finds herself in possession of an old trunk that contains the most gorgeous wedding dress she’s ever seen just as her own wedding plans go up in smoke.
The story follows Charlotte as she finds out more about the mysterious dress and the women who wore it before her. The focus alternated between Charlotte, the two living women who had worn the dress and Emily from 1912. I wish we’d had more of a discovery of each of the women on their wedding days, but I still liked the two main storylines. I especially liked how Charlotte, a woman with no family, finds people who make her feel loved. Sometimes it’s the people we find along our journey that make it worthwhile.
This was a perfect book for this time of year or whenever you want a nice southern romance with a splash of history. Emily’s story in 1912 touched on a lot of hot button issues like Jim Crow laws and women’s suffrage.
Author Rachel Hauck is an Ohio State grad so I know that like me, she’ll be cheering on our Buckeyes on Saturday night 🙂 Go Bucks!