Complete with romance and intrigue, The Lightkeeper’s Bride by Colleen Coble tells the tale of Katie Russell as she learns to trust God with her past secrets, present choices, and future uncertainties. The theme is well summarized in Jeremiah 29:11, which says: “‘I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” Struggling against her controlling nature, Katie finds it difficult to trust God’s plans to be bigger than her shameful past and daunting future.
Coble has a talent for writing fast-paced fiction that keeps readers turning pages. Suspense builds every chapter as her characters undergo a series of internal and external struggles. Short chapters with surprise twists are characteristic of her style, and she is able effectively to incorporate Scripture into the action packed plot.
Working as a telephone operator in Mercy Falls, California, Katie finds herself in the middle of a scandal involving her friend Eliza, her family, and the new lighthouse keeper, Will Jesperson. With an inquisitive mind and a thirst for adventure, Katie takes it upon herself to solve the mystery. Investigating a piracy attack, Will joins Katie in her search for answers that may involve the unexpected arrival of his negligent younger brother, Philip. As they attempt to discover the truth and care for Eliza’s abandoned child, Will and Katie realize their investigations and their lives may be more connected than they thought.
Over time, they develop an attraction that blossoms into deeper emotions, but the superior status of Katie’s family forbids her from marrying for love. Her father has already promised her hand to Bart Foster, a wealthy man who can provide a stable financial future. However, secrets about Katie’s past threaten to surface and repulse everyone in town.
Throughout the novel, Katie and Philip are the embodiments of complete adherence to duty and complete lack of duty, respectively. Katie has always done her best to please her parents and carefully control her life. On the other hand, Philip has lived selfishly and recklessly. As the story progresses, Will struggles to find a balance between these two extremes in character, urging Katie to follow her heart and Philip to take responsibility for his actions.
Katie is continually torn between what she thinks she wants and where her heart leads. Uncertain whether to compromise her duty or lose her true love, she searches for peace only God can provide. As conflicts intensify, she discovers her plans are insignificant compared to God’s plans, and sometimes true love and obedience demand inconvenience.
Overall, The Lightkeeper’s Bride is an excellent story for readers who enjoy romance and action. The characters are believable and easy for readers to relate to. Katie struggles with several issues women experience, such as learning to be less controlling and more comfortable in her own skin. I love the way Coble’s ideas are portrayed in her characters’ lives, and the way her message shines through every experience—good and bad alike. I would highly recommend this book to women of all ages. – Kara Hackett, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
When Katie answers the call of duty, she awakens the call to her heart.
Katie Russell loves working as a telephone operator in Mercy Falls, California. But since childhood she has been expected to marry well. Her family presses for an engagement to wealthy bachelor Bartholomew Foster and though he doesn't stir her heart, their engagement promises a secure financial future.
Working the phone lines one evening, Katie overhears a chilling exchange between her friend Eliza and a familiar male voice. Katie soon learns that Eliza has disappeared, and the crime may be linked to another investigation by handsome new lighthouse keeper, Will Jasperson. Katie and Will soon form an alliance. An alliance that slowly blossoms into something more.
Despite the danger surrounding her, Katie is powerfully drawn to Will. But she is not at liberty to marry for love. And though society forbids their growing affection, Katie can't help but notice Will's sense of peace. It's a peace that rests on his trust in God--a trust that Katie has never had to depend on, with her future so clearly mapped out before her.
But the more Katie uncovers of the mystery, the more she discovers about herself, her past, and the brilliant future that could be hers if only she has the courage to trust in God and follow where her heart so fearlessly leads.