Saturday, March 31, 2018

The Innkeeper's Daughter: Historical Novel by Michelle Griep

Good Morrow, Fellow Readers!  It is the last day of March.  This month just went by so swiftly.  The Weavers Daughter by Sarah Ladd will be published on April 10 along with An Amish Heirloom by Amy Clipston, Beth Wiseman, Kathleen Fuller and Kelly Irvin.  

The Innkeeper’s Daughter by Michelle Griep is set in Dover, England in 1808.  Johanna Langley helps her mother care for the Blue Hedge Inn in Dover, England as well as her mischievous younger brother.  The rent payment as well as the loan payment for repairing the hearth are coming due.  If Johanna cannot come up with the money in time, they will be bound for the workhouse.  She is hoping the upcoming Oak Apple Day will bring in some much needed guests.  Officer Alex Moore is given a special assignment by Magistrate Ford.  Alex is to pose as a gambling rogue to unmask a traitor in Dover.  Someone has been leaking military intelligence to the French.  While staying in Dover, Magistrate Ford has arranged for Alex to lodge at the Blue Hedge Inn.  When Alex meets Johanna, he feels an immediate attraction.  But Alex is not free to pursue the comely Johanna while he is on assignment.  Alex’s mission becomes complicated and he must enlist Johanna’s assistance if they are to bring a collaborator to justice.  Come along for the adventure in The Innkeeper’s Daughter.

The Innkeeper’s Daughter has an intriguing premise.  The blurb for the book captured my attention and had me wanting to find out what happened to the Johanna and Alex.   Michelle Griep did capture the time period with the descriptions of the buildings, clothing, people’s attitudes and behavior, the jobs available, and options for those without funds (there was a lack of historical accuracy).  The Innkeeper’s Daughter had a good start, but then the plot dragged for me. There were some interesting sections, but not enough to hold my attention.  I was happy to see the action pick up near the end of the book.   Johanna is a hard character to like.  She seemed to take the joy out of any room she entered.  Johanna had a very depressing attitude.  She did not like to take advice, let someone else be in charge (like Alex) and Johanna felt like a failure (which readers are reminded of often).  I am surprised the inn was still open with the way it was run.  The little brother is allowed to run around wild (instead of helping at the inn) and then brings in customers that end up costing them money (the mother never took charge).  Overall, Johanna was a frustrating character.  She never seemed to let go and trust God to provide (like Alex).  There was a man with a puppet that was silly and was not needed in the story (I have a feeling he would have gotten beat up regularly).   I felt the ending was a letdown and some of the subplots were confusing.  I give The Innkeeper’s Daughter 3 out of 5 stars.  While I did not feel Michelle Griep hit this one out of the park, I have enjoyed her other novels, and I will continue to read her works in the future.  Kindle users can get a free extended preview of The Innkeeper's Daughter.

Thank you for visiting.  I will return on Easter with my thoughts on A Mother's Gift by Charlotte Hubbard.  I hope you have a tranquil day.  Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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