Wednesday, June 4, 2014

New Review: Ellen O’Connell’s INTO THE LIGHT – Charming, Authentic and Exciting!

This is the sequel to BEAUTIFUL BAD MAN, and while it can be read as a stand alone, I recommend reading BAD MAN first. I loved that one, too! Together they form a single story of the Sutton family.

Set in Kansas in 1899, this is the story of Deborah Sutton, the prettiest of the three Sutton daughters, but with a scar in her past that keeps her from considering marriage with any man, and Trey Van Cleve, heir to a fortune he doesn’t want. The Suttons and the Van Cleves have been at war for decades (you get a good picture in BAD MAN). When Deborah and Trey first meet, it is in a darkened space and neither knows the other’s identity. But they enjoy each other’s conversation, so they meet again. Deborah, who is shy of men, finds his voice soothing; and Trey finds her interesting and intelligent. So when he decides to take over the local newspaper, of course he wants to hire Deborah as a reporter. And it doesn’t hurt he is drawn to the Sutton family because they possess a warmth his own does not.

I liked seeing Cal and Norah Sutton again. And Deborah’s sister Judith was a kick. The characters, as in O’Connell’s other books were wonderfully drawn. A quote I liked when
Deborah got advice from Norah: “I don’t think people ever get fixed,” Norah said thoughtfully. “Almost all of us are broken in some way, so we patch up the broken places and work around them.”

O’Connell based her novel on solid research which I so appreciate. She gives us a picture of a Kansas town at the turn of the century when automobiles were first being introduced, and the past was giving way to the future with unlimited possibilities.

The story is lighter than O’Connell’s earlier novels, but I enjoyed it all the same. It is a well-written saga that will definitely hold your interest. And there’s enough action with someone trying to murder Trey to keep you wondering what’s coming next.

Another great western from O’Connell!

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