Book Reviews of A Bride in the Bargain

A Bride in the Bargain
A Bride in the Bargain
Author: Deeanne Gist
ISBN-13: 9780764204074
ISBN-10: 0764204076
Publication Date: 6/1/2009
Pages: 368
Rating:
  • Currently 4.3/5 Stars.
 185

4.3 stars, based on 185 ratings
Publisher: Bethany House
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

29 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
What a sweet little book this is. No really. Throughout the book I kept thinking to myself, oh, how sweet. Surprisingly enough this didnt make me roll my eyes and toss the book over my shoulder. You see, to me sweet usually means blah, or boring, or possibly a diabetic coma, but not this time. What saves it from being too good to be true is the authors attention to historical detail. She doesnt pretty it up a whole lot which makes the secondary cast of characters much more human, therefore much more interesting.

I loved the use of Mercers Girls to drive the story forward, but its only the catalyst for the meaty part of the book. This is a true love story; love of self, friends, land, career, children and spouse. The only thing that bothered me about this book is that the hero and heroine are a bit unbelievable. Both are a little too good to be true and carry enough guilt to fell a horse. Annas feelings of responsibility for her deceased family rang especially untrue and I wish the author had resolved the issue much sooner than she did.

I cant say this is the best book Ive ever read or that I want to tell all my friends to run right out and buy it, but its a solid read. I found it to be an enjoyable and comfortable book. And since my interests tend toward action, excitement and steamy love scenes, thats saying something.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 41 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
I absolutely adore this book and I think I've found a new favorite author! Lately with the books I've been reading I've had trouble getting into them... They didn't keep my interest or the words just didn't flow. This book however was the complete opposite. I found myself reading one hundred pages at a time without taking a single break and I was really drawn into the story and It's characters. I have to admit Anna made me a little annoyed at times, but that's part of what kept me reading. I wanted to know if she came to her senses.
This book is a picture of a true historical romance novel. I would even go as far as to say it's reminiscent of Gone With the Wind.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 22 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
In post war Seattle, women are few. The men have engaged a professor to return east and find widows to secure as brides. In the east, women are alone due to the ravages of the Civil War. Anna Ivey is alone and penniless. She convinces Professor Mercer to let her accompany him to Seattle to pursue a job cooking. But when she arrives she finds herself handed over to a lumberjack who needs to marry to save his land.
The merry mix and courtship of these two very different people make a pleasurable read. This is one of those stories you don't want to end. . .and when it does you wonder will the next book I read be as good as this book?
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 9 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I READ THESE AS FAST AS I COULD GET THEM. THE PICTURE ON COVER IS MRS. GIST DAUGHTER!!THE STORY IS FAST PAST, FIST SQUEEZING, MIXED UP IDENTITY, EDGE OF SEAT UNBELIEVABLE CIRCUMSTANCES ENDURED BY FEMALES, OF WHO/WHICH THIS LITTLE LADY WILL NOT WILLINGLY OR GRACEFULLY ACCEPT---A GOOD READ. READ THEM IN ORDER.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
A great low-key read! Interesting setting, characters, and plot. Not a lot of extreme emotions, either up or down, but that was kind of refreshing. This was my first time reading Deeanne Gist and I plan to read more!
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on
Helpful Score: 1
I am actually surprised that this book is being criticized for discussing physical attraction... so i am writing a review myself. :)

I discovered this author by accident with a free Kindle edition of MAID TO MATCH. Before becoming a Christian, i spent nearly 2 decades reading mainstream, secular romance novels (with scences that would make most of these reviewers blush). Then i met Jesus, and those books made ME blush.

So, after 2 years of struggling to find an author i could read (and enjoy rather than yawn) and still face Christ each day, i have found a few treasures. Deeanne Gist, Denise Hunter, Francine Rivers, being among them.

Yes, the books speak of physical attraction. But it is quaint compared to our culture, and frankly, God never intended us to be prudes! He gave us physical attraction to be used in the right context, and there is no violation of that context within these books. (in my opinion) :)

Feel free to pick up a Deeanne Gist book and give her style a try without feeling 'oppressed' by your faith. As a child of sexual abuse and the wife of infidelity, i applaud anyone who can remind me that intimacy between a husband and wife is something of God. And Deeanne Gist's books give me exactly that hope/promise to hang onto, a lovely reminder of God's plan for His children.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 22 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Another excellent book from Deeanne Gist. Joe must find a bride or lose the land he's worked so hard to cultivate for logging. Anna signs up to go to Seattle to become the cook for his men. According to the author, this accurately reflected the subterfuge of the man who put this scheme together in real life. There is no doubt Joe and Anna are meant for each other, but each of them must deal with issues from their past before they are able to come together. One of the unique things about this book is that, while the characters have faith in God, the author makes it clear that they deal with strong physical desires for the other character. However they deal with it according to God's plan and maintain their purity. It is such a refreshing balance between Romance novels where the marriage date is irrelevant to consummating the relationship and Christian historical fiction where you don't think either character will know what to do on their wedding night. Joe and Anna know and that anticipation is very fun to read. As much as I'd love to post this book to share it with others, it is staying on my permanent book shelf. You'll have to buy your own copy. ;-)
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 3 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Very cute book, a fun and easy read.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 70 more book reviews
This is one of those refreshing and sweet romance novels. There is interesting information about the logging operations before machines, when log trucks were still pulled by mules. The main character is an eighteen year old woman who has no family left. She decides to join a ship full of mail order brides headed to Seattle. This is a perfect book for young girls and teens. The conflict between the hero and heroine is about doing what is right for all the right reasons. There is kissing and feelings of attraction but no explicit sex. I give it 4 stars.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 205 more book reviews
This is really a cute book. Anna is a recently orphaned 19 year old having lost her brother and father to the Civil War and her mother to having a broken heart. She finds a brochure advertising a need for nannies, cooks and wives in Seattle. She signes a contract to go west and become a cook at a logging camp owned by Joe Denton. Joe has signed a contract and payed $300.00 for a wife, without which he will loose 320 acres of his timberland since his wife has died and he needs a wife to be entitled to the entire 640 acres he has laid claim to and built a home as a lumberjack. Anna has sworn to never marry and when she arrives in Seattle, meets Joe and ends up at the church for a wedding, she puts her foot down, produces her contract and refuses to marry Joe. This is when the fun starts. Joe is determined to convince Anna to marry him but he only has 12 weeks left to do so. The book is full of humor as well as historical information.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 6 more book reviews
I love this book. I think I may have found another favorite author. :) I love it when that happens!!!!
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 157 more book reviews
On the east coast, then around the horn to the west coast this book spans the United States shortly after the Civil War. Being a southern girl through and through it was interesting for me to really feel for a character who could not be more devoted to her Union ties. Starting with nothing but loss and a past that is haunted by guilt not earned our heroine learns to get up and go on with life. The matter is she has to open her life to where God leads and not to where she is determined to be. Our hero is set and knows what he wants, but does not necessarily like what he has to do to get it. Until he accepts his fate and realizes that quite possibly God has a better plan that he. A bargain is made and if all goes well there might be a bride, but which one and will it be in time for everything else to be saved?



The preface of the book is set on a historically accurate fact that a man did take it upon himself to go to the east coast to find wives (orphans - not in the children sense you think of, but girls old enough to marry with no family or other options and widows - women who were left alone with either children or not after the Civil War stole them of their husbands) for the men on the west coast. If you've read much historical fiction, you know many men went west for the land, the mining, and this case the lumberjacking as well. The man who was the "entrepreneur" was not an honest man, but he was not evil in the sense of some characters as well. He was just a man who did not always tell the whole truth.



Other than just knowing that the women who were invited to participate in the exodus were from categories such as widows and orphans, there is no real emphasis on the fact or details of the past lives. So there is no dwelling sadness there as one might assume.



In a way, I would very much relate a partial idea of the story to A Bride Most Begrudging. The location is completely different. The characters are completely different. The plot is completely different. But in a similar fashion there is a woman who the last thing on her mind was getting married, who finds out that it might not be up to her with her plans of what she once thought.



How does that sound?
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 18 more book reviews
I am a huge Deeanne Gist fan. This book is tied for first place with Maid to Match. I loved the story and read it in one day. I know that this is a book that I will read over and over again. The only complaint I have is that the male characters in her books are a tad unrealistic. It may just be me, but in the years I have spent living in on this earth, I have yet to come across a man who is as incredibly handsome and muscular as her heros seem to be. But that's just me.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 14 more book reviews
If you're looking for a wonderful romantic story with no curse words or descriptive sex scenes, you will thoroughly enjoy reading this book! However, if you're looking for a romance book in which either the hero or heroine develops a deeper relationship with God by turning to Him for strength or perseverance in order to overcome a hardship, this is not that book. While the storyline does include an engaging plot, it does not include the characters' development to spiritual maturity often seen in good "Christian" romances.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 7 more book reviews
This book is purely "Christian" candy. I put Christian in quotes because as Christian fiction, it was a bit surprising to me how much physical attraction made it's way into the pages. (However, I have to admit I couldn't put it down and it made me giggle alot.) I liked the plot, the characters, and especially the setting. Joseph Denton's love of the land was exciting, as well as Anna's growing understand of him in his environment. I am not sure I should have liked this book as much as I did, but we all have our treats from time to time- this one was mine.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 69 more book reviews
A Bride in the Bargain is a hoot! It is a sweet story with fun characters, but over all (to me) it was a book that made be laugh and smile the whole time I read it. Joe Denton has his land... he has worked to prove it and has a thriving lumber business. What he doesn't have is a wife and if he doesn't get one soon, or prove he had one at the time he started this endeavor, then he will loose it all. Asa Mercer is promising brides... orphans and widows of the Civil War who have no one. Desperate, Joe purchases one of Mercer's brides and then waits for her to arrive.

Anna Ivey needs to escape... the pain of all she lost to the war and the clutches of an unscrupulous boss who wants more than a cook. She signs on with Mercer to move west and cook for a lumber business in Seattle. What he fails to tell her and many of the other women is there is more to the bargain!

When Joe Denton escorts Anna to the preacher she is appalled! She came to be a hired cook not a wife and she wants nothing to do with marriage! With only a few months left before he loses all he has, can Joe convince Anna that marriage would serve them both well?

There are so many twists and turns and hilarious happenings in this book.. not only with Joe and Anna, but with some of the other characters like Mrs. Wrenne and her lack of teeth or the Judge and his nameless children called One, Two, Three and Four!

Delightful book! Put it on your "to read" list. You will not be disappointed!
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 2 more book reviews
A great story!
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 14 more book reviews
This is one of my favorite books by Deanne Gist. The story is romantic, sweet, completely captivating, and holds a good religious lesson. Though some people may find this book a little steamy for their sensibilities, I think the physical description of the attraction between the main characters is realistic and does not cross the boundaries of propriety. In fact, this novel is extremely reserved when compared to what graces the shelves of the young adult section and even some other Christian romances.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 14 more book reviews
The story overall was well written and kept my interest. However, Miss Ivey's character was meant to come across as forthright, capable, and sensible was overdone in her reasoning and to me came across as silly, selfish and annoying. My irritation with her character kept me from truly enjoying the book.
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An interesting story about brides being "bought" and sent to the West coast. And it is partly based on true incidents.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 15 more book reviews
rich historical detail, good story
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 41 more book reviews
I absolutely adore this book and I think I've found a new favorite author! Lately with the books I've been reading I've had trouble getting into them... They didn't keep my interest or the words just didn't flow. This book however was the complete opposite. I found myself reading one hundred pages at a time without taking a single break and I was really drawn into the story and It's characters. I have to admit Anna made me a little annoyed at times, but that's part of what kept me reading. I wanted to know if she came to her senses.
This book is a picture of a true historical romance novel. I would even go as far as to say it's reminiscent of Gone With the Wind.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 29 more book reviews
Joe Denton is a lumber jack. Anna is an orphan searching for an income. When Anna finds the perfect chance to get away from the war, memories and her employer, she takes the risk.
Joe isn't comvinced he needs a wife until a man sues him because he has too much land for a bachelor. Bachelors have 320 acres. Married men have 640. Joe doesn't care what kind of wife he gets as long as he can keep ALL of his land.
When Joe buys a wife, he finds that this bride was brought to Seattle out of deception. Anna thought that she was to be a cook. Can Joe and Anna figure out how to fix the problem at hand? A wife can also be a cook. A cook doesn't have to be a wife though.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 4 more book reviews
1860 in the Northern United States is the setting of this story. Anna Ivey lives on the East coast and lands on a ship taking women to the West coast with the promise of a husband. Anna doesn't want a husband, but encounters the adventure with the mindset of becoming a cook to release herself from a situation of discomfort in her present East coast situation! When she reaches her destination, she is pleasantly surprised by the lumberjack who "needs" a wife to save his land and business. He is honest, generous with his money, thoughtful, romantic, and yet Miss Ivey holds her ground to staying as a cook, even though her heart strings are tugged in the direction of loving this man! She is in constant battles with her past and how people she loves end up dying. How can she become involved with a man and have him die?

I couldn't put it down and the story lifts your heart to this goodness of people.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 9 more book reviews
Very enjoyable read! What I appreciate about Gist is her attention to detail, and her pick of not very obvious or often-written-about time periods. Before reading this book, I didn't know much about the lumberjacks in the Northern states. Also, when it comes to romance, her characters (not just this book, but other titles of hers I've read) deal with real issues, not just the cliche of they-love-me-they-love-me-not. The hero and heroine in this book deal with the reality of love and acceptance of self, and what sacrifice for a loved one entails.

My only complaint? While all the characters were enjoyable (I appreciate how she writes the children's dialogue), the Joe and Anna seemed too perfect, moreso physically--then again, it could be her way of writing this observation from how they viewed each other.

Despite that, I enjoyed this book very much. Whenever I finished a chapter, two words of Anna's came to mind: "Good heavens." :)
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 74 more book reviews
One of my favorites. A historically accurate and engrossing read. I love almost anything by Deeanne Gist, especially those in colonial America.
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An oldie, but so good and fun to listen to. Highly recommended!
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on
I loved it and couldn't put it down.
reviewed A Bride in the Bargain on + 39 more book reviews
I am really concerned about unmarried women reading this author's books. This is the second one I have read and it, also, gives me pause. I believe there are descriptions in the book that are not appropriate for godly women to read nor are they necessary. We don't need to have detailed accounts from the man's side of wanting to nuzzle her neck, watching the dress cling to her hips and the like. (The other book I read had the man regarding and exclaiming over her long slim legs) There are ways to describe his attraction to her without getting too physical. As a "christian" story and a Christian author , in my opinion, there should be less of the outward and more of Christ and the inward. It is sad to see so many such books as this one on the market. I will not be passing this book onto my dd.