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Monday, April 27 2009

The Bracelet b y Jennie Hansen

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The Bracelet by Jennie Hansen
Reviewed by Michele Ashman Bell

Every once in a while a book comes along that has such engaging characters and such a richly woven plot that you truly hate to see it come to an end.  The Bracelet is one of those books.  And the good news is that it is the beginning of a six-book series.

            click to buy
Click To BuySet in the year 1843, near London, England, The Bracelet tells the story of a young woman named Georgiana, an orphan, who is a servant to the wealthy Burton family.  She works diligently as hairdresser and seamstress to Lady Burton, but deep inside fancies herself one day becoming a society lady herself.  She dreams of beautiful gowns and jewels, parties and balls, mingling with England's most powerful and most wealthy citizens.  And her dream is about to become a reality because Georgiana is involved with Sydney, the Burtons' son.  Sydney has confessed his love for Georgiana and his desire to marry her.  As a token of his love and promise of their plans to elope, after his mother throws an elaborate ball, he gives her a bracelet filled with colorful gems. 

With a soaring heart, Georgiana leaves her betrothed to help the ladies of the house prepare for the ball.  Once her duties are fulfilled she finds a hiding spot where she can watch the party and dream of a time when she will be able to mingle amongst the wealthy, instead of watching from a distance.  It is here in her hiding place that she witnesses Sydney's betrayal of her love and learns that her dreams of spending the rest of her life with him will never happen.   She also learns that he has plotted to get rid of her so that she won't get in the way of his plans.  Filled with confusion, heartache and anger, Georgiana springs into action, knowing that the only way to save herself is to run as fast and as far away from Sydney as she possibly can.  In her haste to leave, she makes a desperate and difficult decision, and takes several priceless family jewels with her. 

Georgiana strikes out on her own in the direction of London where she plans to get lost in the crowds of the city, but lives in constant fear that somewhere in the shadows Sydney lurks, ready and waiting, to exact his revenge upon her. There is no doubt in her mind that she will see Sydney Burton again.

Right from the beginning of the book, readers quickly feel compassion and empathy for Georgiana and the challenges she faces.  Yes, she's made mistakes and bad choices, but she tries to make the best of her situation and has a heart of gold.  These traits make her an admirable character - one that deserves much more out of life than she is getting.  She dreams of a better life, where there is love, security, happiness and fulfillment.  But each bend in the rough road she travels seems to make it harder and harder for her to find the peace and joy she longs for.        

The reader will agonize with Georgiana as she struggles to continually escape the clutches of the evil Sydney Burton, but will also feel joy and triumph as she finally meets Olivia's step-brother, Robert, a seaman and captain, who is charming, caring and protective of his step-sister and Georgiana. 

Perhaps her greatest struggle though, is when she is introduced to the gospel by two missionaries from the United States who share the message of repentance and the restoration with her.  She gains a testimony of the truth of the gospel but she knows that to be baptized she will need to repent for taking the jewels.  To repent means to return the jewels, an act that will certainly lead to her death.

The Bracelet, is a thrilling, exquisite tale that will leave you breathless at times and leave you wanting more when it ends.  Jennie Hansen has done an outstanding job of creating an historical masterpiece with stunning descriptions and careful attention to detail.  You'll feel as though you've walked back in time and are caught up in an adventurous, romantic tale full of exciting twists and turns.   This is a tale that will leave you anxiously waiting for book two.  I have no doubt that you will thoroughly enjoy The Bracelet.

The Bracelet by Jennie Hansen was published by Covenant Communications, Inc.

© 2005 Meridian Magazine.  All Rights Reserved.

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