Tidewater Bride by Laura Frantz (review)

Tasked with helping make matches for the tobacco brides arriving in the Virginia Colony, merchant’s daughter Selah Hopewell finds that she herself has a burgeoning attraction to one of the most eligible of local bachelors. But the history she shares with widower Xander Renick, along with his roles as both a tobacco planter and a member of local government, and her desire to marry only for love may prove even more of an impediment.

With both local politics and relations with the Powhatan chief fraught with dangers, the ongoing animosity between Xander and another man whose interest Selah attracts, as well as the tensions between those who choose to purchase slaves and those like Xander who refuse, this is a multi-layered story that forms a well researched portrait of life in 1634 James Town.

From their first encounter until the final page, Selah and Xander capture the reader’s imagination. Tidewater Bride is a richly imagined and deftly told tale, that grows ever more interesting as each character is introduced and each event unfolds. 

Each new book by Laura Frantz is one I look forward to, but none so much as Tidewater Bride and it still managed to exceed my expectations. For those who appreciate thoroughly researched history seamlessly woven into a Historical Inspirational Romance, this is a novel to savor. Very highly recommended.

This review refers to a finished paperback copy I voluntarily received from the publisher. A positive review was not required and these are only my own, honest opinions.

Tidewater Bride by Laura Frantz | Revell, January 2021 | paperback, 416 pages

About the Book

They’re both too busy for love . . . but love is not too busy for them

Selah Hopewell seems to be the only woman in Virginia Colony who has no wish to wed. True, there are too many men and far too few women in James Towne. But Selah already has her hands full assisting her father in the family’s shop. And now she is in charge of an incoming ship of tobacco brides who must be looked after as they sort through their many suitors.

Xander Renick is perhaps the most eligible tobacco lord in the settlement. His lands are vast, his crops are prized, and his position as a mediator between the colonists and the powerful Powhatan nation surrounding them makes him indispensable. But Xander is already wedded to his business and still grieves the loss of his wife.

Can two fiercely independent people find happiness and fulfillment on their own? Or will they discover that what they’ve been missing in life has been right in front of them all along?