Monday, August 8, 2011

Stealing Jake by Pam Hillman

4 out of 5 stars

Livy O’Brien knows all too well the plight of street children. Though once a child who wandered the streets, she now assists in running the local town orphanage. Yet running the orphanage is not enough for her. She longs to reach out to the children who still wander the streets, but she knows their fear and how hard it is for them to trust anyone. It’s a fear she once shared—and still shares when it comes to lawman, Jake Russell--which is why she’s determined to keep her attraction to him from growing. If he learned of her past, he’d reject her.
      Deputy Jake Russell, is struggling to pay off a loan. He knows he doesn’t have time to pursue the beautiful Miss O’Brien, but he can’t deny the attraction he feels toward her. Despite his attempts, she seems uncomfortable around him. As local crimes around town increase--crimes supposedly committed by urchins that wander the streets--he works to try to catch the culprits. Yet his and Livy’s views of the criminal street-children differ. Will these views be their undoing, or will they pull them into something neither of them expected?
I have to say right out that this book did not disappoint! This story captured me from the first page and didn’t let go until the end. Filled with romance, mystery, and depth, this story is sure to capture you.

Pam Hillman proves herself an expert at historical research. The thorough and accurate presentation of history in this novel is impressive. In fact, calling it impressive is doing her an injustice. The research is actually phenomenal. 

Her ability to create not just intriguing lead characters, but an entire town filled with various characters and personalities, shows mastery that one rarely finds with debut novelists.  

The thing that stands out most in Stealing Jake is the message Mrs. Hillman shares with her readers. Her heroine’s passion for the street children seeps though the pages of the book and makes its way straight to the heart. While America may not have many orphaned children wandering the street anymore, families and individuals who lack adequate food or shelter do still wander the streets, struggling to make it through the next hour—and this book made me stop and consider what I can do to help them. While the message definitely exposes the heart to truths we may never have considered, it’s never once presented in an over-preachy or condemning manner.

I highly recommend this book. It will definitely satisfy those who love historical romance! I can’t to read Pam Hillman’s next novel.

Recently Shelf Life hosted Pam Hillman for her blog tour. If you'd like to learn more about her, check out her post. Also she's hosting a Kindle giveaway!

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