Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Stephanie Humphreys

Stress levels are running high at the moment with deadlines and other obligations, and what I needed was a sweet bedtime read that wouldn't tax my overwrought mind but still deliver a satisfying escape. Finding Rose fit the bill nicely. From the back cover:

On his deathbed, Rose Sterling’s father asks her to consider Miles Crandall as a suitor. Then Rose is sent to live with an uncle in Spring Creek, Montana, far from her carefree life with her family in Utah. Miles is returning to his hometown of Spring Creek to set up a medical practice, so Rose is certain her being sent there is a setup. Yet Miles doesn’t seem interested in her, and after Rose falls ill in Montana, he seems content to act as her physician and friend. When Rose captures the attention of Miles’s younger, flamboyant brother as well as the town sheriff, Miles retreats even further from any attempt at courtship.

How can Rose honor her father’s last wish if Miles doesn’t even try to court her? Will she have the courage to put her heart on the line and fight for the one she really loves?

The premise is familiar and the read is sweet and lazy, providing some interesting glimpses of life on the frontier during a period of history when the Mormons were establishing settlements in Canada. I particularly enjoyed these historical aspects of the story, however the exact time frame isn't clearly revealed for quite a while, which leads the reader scratching their heads for a time.
Stephanie Humphreys has created a cast of characters with plenty of room to grow, and we see that growth most clearly in Rose, Abbie, and Miles.

Rose debuts as a headstrong daughter who opts for rebellion when the family's future plans require a move from familiar surroundings. Her self-serving choices are irritating at times, making her a somewhat overpowering and frequently undeserving counterpart to the faithful Miles, who comes across as an understandably reluctant romantic prospect.

When Rose is forced to leave the comforts of her home in Salt Lake City to bear the wilds of Mile's Montana’s frontier town, she is thrust into her uncle's household with an equally stubborn woman—her uncommunicative aunt, Abbie. As the new, pretty girl in a town where women are the minority, Rose has a host of attentive men eyeing her, including Miles' overconfident brother Zach. The ensuing love triangle and human drama are the primary elements of the story.

The plotting and conflicts provide good impetus for character growth and drama, and as mentioned above, it is the personal development of this cast of awkward characters that keeps the reader engaged.

After reading the author's bio it seems Ms. Humphreys draws upon personal knowledge for settings and to flesh out Rose's domestically-gifted character, which probably accounts for the pleasing detail in Finding Rose. And while the storyline is a familiar one, Stephanie Humphreys tosses in some interesting plot twists that cause this love triangle to pleasantly satisfy an afternoon.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds interesting. And it has a beautiful cover.