Title: To Whisper Her Name
Author: Tamera Alexander
Series: A Belle Meade Plantation Novel, #1
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Age-Range: young adults/adults
Era: late 1860s
Setting: Kentucky, USA
Rating: 3/5 stars. If I were just rating the characters, writing, and the main plot, I’d give it five stars, but there were a few things that took away those two stars.
Content: 2.5/5. A lot of attraction between Olivia and Ridley … which made me kind of uncomfortable. Will you please stop staring at each other??? Not much violence, no swearing. Overall, relatively clean.
To Whisper Her Name by Tamera Alexander
Set at Nashville’s historic Belle Meade Plantation, the most influential thoroughbred stud farm in America’s history, To Whisper Her Name weaves the struggles of real people of the post-war South with the journeys of a man and a woman scarred by betrayal.
Olivia Aberdeen, destitute widow of a man shot as a traitor to the South, is shunned by proper society and gratefully accepts an invitation from “Aunt” Elizabeth Harding, mistress of Belle Meade Plantation. Expecting to be the Harding’s head housekeeper, Olivia is disillusioned when she learns the real reason Elizabeth’s husband, Confederate General William Giles Harding, agreed to her coming. Not finding the safe haven she expects, Olivia is caught off guard by her feelings for Ridley Adam Cooper, a Southern man who seems anything but a Southern gentleman.
Branded a traitor by some, Ridley Cooper, a Southern son who chose to fight for the Union, is a man desperate to end the war still raging inside him. Determined to learn “the gift” that Belle Meade’s head horse trainer and former slave, Bob Green, possesses, Ridley harbors secrets that threaten both their lives.
As Ridley seeks to make peace within himself for “betraying” the South he loved, Olivia is determined to never be betrayed again.
This was an amazing book! I loved the writing style, the plot, the characters, and the setting! I wanted so badly to give it five stars – and more! – but this book was not filled out to its full potential, despite its loveliness.
Amazing! That’s all I have to say. It was intricate, but not too difficult to understand, just exciting enough, and thoroughly engaging. I’d definitely recommend it!
A few things …
For one thing, the end was disappointing. We were built up and built up and built up … and then we got a somewhat anticlimactic end! It wasn’t that the end wasn’t what I wanted for the characters and the plot, it was just that it happened way to fast, as if the writer suddenly got sick of it and decided it was time to type “The End” with no further ado.
There were also several subplots that weren’t properly resolved, that just seemed to be dropped.
But, overall, an amazing plot that drew me in from page one on! 🙂
I loved Olivia. She was a sweet, an somewhat funny, character who had quite a lot of spunk and sass. At first, she annoyed me a little bit (as I believe she was supposed to), but as time went on, I started to really like her. She underwent a nice, well-written transformation that I really enjoyed. I was rooting for her all the way!
Ridley was awesome. 🙂 He was funny, and I loved how amused he was by Olivia. They were really cute together. He was a well-developed, likable character.
“Aunt” Elizabeth Harding:
Very kind … and surprising! I was disappointed by the way the book ended for her, though.
I don’t know why, but I really liked this guy! I kind of thought of him as Gerald O’Hara … who was another character I really liked (in the book Gone with the Wind, not the movie).
Nice character ark! Wish there had of been more about her, but it probably would have subtracted from the plot if there had of been.
I WANT HIS JOB!!! Seriously, though, he was an amazing, well-developed, strong character.
I could go on about the complete awesomeness of the setting for hours! To begin with … IT WAS A HORSE FARM!!! THERE WERE HORSES!!! Second off, it was in the South, during the Reconstruction era! And the writing fit the setting perfectly. I can honestly say that I spent several days at Belle Meade Plantation. 😉
I will DEFINITELY read this novel again, but it could have been better.