Bethany, 2004 (2004)
Reviewed by Melissa Parcel
ethia Rayborn's life in 1890s London is proceeding exactly according to her plans and dreams. Near graduation from college, she already has a job at the Royal Court Theater as wardrobe mistress, and is becoming known for her expertise in historical costumes.
ut although Bethia is betrothed to her childhood sweetheart Guy Russell, Douglas Pearce misconstrues her polite gesture of friendship and persists in believing she desires him to court her. Then Douglas's sister, Muriel Pearce Holt, joins the theater as its new leading lady. Distressed at Bethia's treatment of her brother, Muriel tries to make her life miserable. When unfortunate events make Muriel even angrier, Bethia must rely on God to redeem the distressing situation.
his is the third book in Lawana Blackwell's
Tales of London
series. The richly detailed Victorian backdrop draws you in, and the adventure and intrigue keeps you reading. Bethia is a strong woman (especially for the late nineteenth century) and the way she handles the roadblocks she encounters is inspiring. It is obvious that the author did a great deal of research into the era and the theater of the times. I learned much about costuming and about issues of historical accuracy, and enjoyed the behind-the-scenes look at the hustle and bustle of 1800s theater life.
ethia's strength of character and reliance on God, even in the midst of difficult circumstances, touch the spirit. The metaphor of the theater with people acting out God's direction for their lives is beautifully portrayed.
is part of a series, which can stand alone, though readers will want to absorb the first two books to get a more thorough background on the characters. Historical fiction lovers will find this a book to treasure.
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