Author: Anne Mateer
Review by Grace Olson
Ever since I finished reading Anne Mateer’s second novel, At Every Turn, I have been really looking forward to reading A Home for My Heart. The novel’s bright, fresh, beautiful cover drew my eye first. I already expected great things from Mateer’s writing, and the back cover blurb intrigued me as well. I mean, who doesn’t want to find out how this “glitch” is going to be fixed? It was well worth the wait.
Taken from Bethany House Publisher’s website synopsis of A Home for My Heart:
A sweet story of hope and love set against the poignant backdrop of a 1910 orphanage
Sadie Sillsby works as the assistant to the matron at the Raystown Home for Orphan and Friendless Children, pouring all her energy into caring for the boys and girls who live there and dreaming of the day she’ll marry her beau, Blaine, and have children of her own. But when the matron surprises everyone by announcing her own engagement, Sadie is suddenly next in line for the esteemed job of running the orphanage.
There’s one glitch. The matron cannot be married. She must focus her attention on the financial, legal, and logistical matters of the Home. Sadie’s heart is torn. Should she give up her plans for a life with Blaine in order to continue serving these children who have no one else? Does she, a young woman who was once an orphan herself, have what it takes to succeed in such a challenging career? And when the future of the Home begins to look bleak, can Sadie turn things around before the place is forced to close forever?
A Home for My Heart is Mateer’s third novel, and you can read my review of her debut book, Wings of a Dream, here. Like I said, I was eager to read more from this talented author, creator of sweet romance, composer of meaningful spiritual journeys, and crafter of novels that will draw you in and not let you go until they’ve quite had their say.
When I started reading A Home for My Heart, the beginning was not as I thought it would be. I mean, was she just going to let him go? (Don’t worry, that wasn’t a spoiler. If you read the blurb, you should figure out that some conflict is going to crop up). Then the pace began to pick up, and away I went, swept off my feet into a whole new adventure.
Mateer’s ability to create characters who make you smile or sigh in frustration is wonderful. The children of the Home captured my heart, just as they did Sadie’s. Then as Sadie worked against incredible odds, I rooted for her, experiencing every heartrending victory and defeat as if it was I who was facing the challenges.
Now. On to the “sweet romance” I mentioned above. As you can probably tell, Sadie and Blaine’s relationship is on shaky grounds when she accepts the position of matron at the Home, and the situation remains precarious, the tension high, until the very end. I can’t say much more without giving away certain details, but let’s just say there is more than one man who has an interest in Sadie’s heart.
Sadie battles with her murky past throughout the novel, the conditions that she was born into, and the circumstances under which she arrived at the orphanage. From this materializes her struggle with her own self-worth, and whether she receives that security from God, or from her own actions. This affects her every movement and thought. At times, I wished I could sit her down and set her straight, but sometimes a person has to work through such matters on their own before what they believe takes hold and becomes conviction.
About the Author
Biography from Bethany House Publisher’s website: Anne Mateer is a three-time Genesis Contest finalist who has long had a passion for history and historical fiction. She and her husband live near Dallas, Texas, and are the parents of three young adults. ~ To learn more about her and the other books she has written, visit her web page: http://www.annemateer.com/
All in all, there was hardly anything I did not like about A Home for My Heart. With characters and a story I won’t soon forget, this novel has found a permanent home on my bookshelf. I hope you take the time to read it as well, and perhaps it might even find its way onto yours.
I was given a review copy of A Home for My Heart from Bethany House Publishers for an honest review. I received no monetary compensation for my review.
A Home for My Heart is available for download or paper copy.