The Red Siren, by M.L. Tyndall

The Red SirenFinished 2-15-09, rating 3/5, inspirational fiction, pub. 2008

Charles Towne Belles. Book 1

Dajon’s exuberance sank to the floor.  “Your daughters?”  his voice squeaked.

“Why yes.  There is no better man than you to be their guardian in my absence.  With the Spanish and Indian attacks of late, not to mention the savage nature of some of the settlers, they need a naval officer to protect them.”

No promotion?  Dajon’s breath halted in his throat.  He wiped the sweat from his brow.  A guardian?  Of women?  Every encounter he’d ever had with females had ended in disaster.

Chapter 2

It is 1718 and the Westcott sisters – Faith, Hope, and Grace- are in the Carolinas with their father, Rear Admiral of the British Royal Army.  Having already married off their oldest sister to an abusive brute, Faith is afraid of the same fate befalling her, so she has secretly been a pirate captain for over five years.  She hopes to amass a fortune so great that neither she nor her sisters will be forced into marriage.

When the Admiral must go back to Europe he leaves Captain Dajon White in charge of his daughters.  Dajon’s duty in the Navy is to protect the Carolina shore from pirates and this causes much concern for Faith, who finds herself drawn to Dajon.  Dajon has been duped by the lady pirate before and he suspects Faith, but his growing feelings for her cloud his judgement.

I did enjoy this historical inspirational romance.  It had adventure and danger and a wonderful message of God’s forgiveness and redemption.  Faith had lost her belief in God when her mother died, and it wasn’t until the God-fearing Dajon entered her life that she began to reconnect with God.  Dajon was a good man and it was nice to see chivalry and honor in a hero.

While I liked it, I did not love it.  I found all three sisters a little selfish and too modern for the times.  And I found it difficult to envision Faith as the captain of a pirate ship.  The way in which men were betrayed in this book made me question how this pretty girl commanded a ship full of obedient men.

If you like historical romances or inspirational fiction I think you’ll enjoy it.

I received this from LibraryThing to review.

Sweet Caroline, by Rachel Hauck

Sweet CarolineFinished 9-4-08, rating 4/5, inspirational fiction, pub. 2008

This is the first inspirational fiction book that I’ve read.  I’m not sure what my expectations were, but I’d have to say I was pleasantly surprised.  I guess I thought that inspirational fiction would offer a sanitized view of the world, but instead of that being a bad thing I found it to be a sweet look at the world, even if that sweetness was unbelievable at times.

Caroline is in her late 20’s, single, and floating through life by helping other people with their lives instead of making one of her own.  The owner of the cafe where she works has died and left the cafe to her.  The place is a money pit and Caroline struggles with whether to stay and save the cafe or to take a plum job in Spain.  Her life is further complicated by her dating a reformed ladies man while her first true loves comes back to town.  And it is during this time that she attends church and feels the presence of God in her life.

This is a nice story that feels like the South Carolina low country it is set in.  The writing was good and kept me reading into the night.  There were many storylines woven together with real skill.  The finding God storyline was one that I found moving without being preachy.  That being said, some things were a little too good.  I’ve never had a car dealer make a deal with me and then throw in an extra $1000 because he thinks I’m a good person and I know there are many virgins in their late 20’s, but they and their dates have issues with it that never really came up in this book.  So there were a few things that didn’t ring quite true for me.

I would recommend this book.  I think you’ll really like Caroline and her story.  Essentially, it’s one woman’s quest to make her way in the world on her own terms.  I will gladly read more inspirational fiction, especially when I need to be reassured that the world is not always the cynical place it’s made out to be.