Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Karen Robards: Nobody's Angel

Nobody's Angel: A++
Susannah Redmon & Ian Connelly

...The titillating story, set in 1769 in the Carolinas, of a minister's daughter who falls in love with the indentured servant whom she's purchased. Susannah Redmon, a 26-year-old spinster who's spent the last dozen years acting as a mother to her three younger sisters and helping her widowed father run the family farm, decides to buy an indentured servant at a public auction. Her choice falls on Ian Connelly--filthy, starving, and suffering from repeated beatings; before he can work, Susannah must nurse him back to health. As she does, she discovers, of course, that he's devilishly handsome. Soon the formerly prim minister's daughter--in an engaging Lady Chatterley-like situation--is romping about with her bound man in a most unseemly fashion

Um, let me tell you how much I love this book.

Since I first read it, around eight years ago, I’ve re-read it at least twenty times, at least twice a
year. When I’m feeling gloomy, I pop open this book. When I’m feeling sad, I pop open this book. When I’m feeling moody, I pop open this book. When I’m feeling happy, I pop open this book.

Plot-wise, I realize that it is very shallow. The ending is rather rushed. In fact, the entire book is two-hundred sixty pages. If a new reader were to read this book for the first time, I’d think that she would be wholly unsatisfied at the lack of description in many of the scenes.

However, I’ve reread this book so many times that the scenery, the characters and their attitudes have come to life for me. More than anything, I love love this book because I relate to the heroine so intensely. When Susannah reacts to a situation in a certain manner, I wholly relate and can completely imagine myself doing what she did.

Susannah buys an indentured servant, a bound man, to help out at her family’s farm. Her father is a pastor, and she is the eldest of three younger sisters. Because her mother passed away when she was fourteen, she grew up overnight, and assumed the position as the head of the household, as her father was preoccupied with his congregation.

Now, she is a spinster at age twenty-six, and is the town’s angel. She cares for others and takes on their worries. To her dismay, she falls in love with her too-handsome indentured servant. She is unaware of Ian’s past life and chooses him anyway.

I love that Ian is able to look past Susannah’s looks and spinsterish attitude and loves her for her very huge and soft heart, and I love that Susannah is such a strong character. She’s in your face and is able to take command when she needs to – she’s the glue that holds everything together, and she does it in a fabulous manner.

I have a feeling that I will be a minority in obsession over this book, but I love how the characters are so real to me. A keeper on my bookshelf, forever.

1 comment:

Kristie (J) said...

I think this is the first Karen Robards book I ever read and I really enjoyed it too. It's been years since I read it but I still remember parts of it. I really should read it again. Have you read Tiger's Eye? I think that is my favourite historical she wrote and of course One Summer is my favourite contemporary. I LOVE that one!