The Artisan’s Wife by Judith Miller (review by Kristi)

the artisan's wife

About the book:  Ainslee McKay’s world is shaken when she discovers her twin sister has not only eloped with a man she barely knows but now Ainslee must fulfill their obligation at a tile works in Weston, West Virginia. Ainslee must learn the ropes and, if she can keep the tile works profitable, her brother will help her sell the business.
When Levi Judson arrives and shows Ainslee his designs for new tiles, she’s impressed by his skill and passion for the business. But he’s hiding his true reason for coming to Weston. And Ainslee knows he’d be crushed to learn his plans for a long career at McKay Tile Works are in vain since she intends to sell. Can the growing feelings between them survive if the truth comes to light–or is a future together as untenable as the future of the tile works itself?

Paperback, 333 pages         Published August 2, 2016,  by Bethany House Publishers

My review: This book was sooooo good! I was immediately hooked on the story and couldn’t put the book down. The characters, storyline, and details were all wonderfully written. I found this book to be an amazingly quick read for me.

I could understand Ainslee’s reluctance to move to Weston and live out the dream that was mostly that of her twin sister. Faced with having to move to a town where she knew nobody and had to do a job that she was supposed to do with her sister had to be quite daunting but I thought she handled it well. Ainslee was a strong female character and I do love a good story with a strong female lead. Even though she was strong she didn’t come across as overbearing or aggressive. She faced challenges head-on and was determined. I really liked Ainslee McKay.

Levi Judson was another character I liked immediately. He complimented Ainslee’s character perfectly and he himself was a strong person yet gentle. I enjoyed the fact he didn’t try to take over things but was a partner and helper to Ainslee when she needed one. I really enjoyed how the author wrote their friendship into the story. Everything happened naturally and seemed so real. It is impossible not to like these characters.

There are characters from the previous books in the series in this book as well as new ones, mainly the residents of Weston. I liked Mrs. Brighton and knew she would be a character I liked as soon as I read the description of her twinkling eyes. Nettie was also another character I liked instantly. The friendship she formed with Ainslee happened naturally and seemed genuine to the story.

The details in the book were great. It was interesting to learn about the making of the tiles and also reading about the asylum and the reactions of the town residents and Ainslee’s family. I was surprised at some of the reasons the people lived there.

The Artisan’s Wife sounds like it would be the title for a romance book but I found the book to be more about a woman finding herself in a situation she would rather not be in and making the most of it and not giving up. There is a romantic storyline but it isn’t written in to be the main focus but instead is a nice addition to the story.

I really like the author’s writing style. The book flows effortlessly from one chapter to the next and there was never a point in the story where I got bored. This seems to be the last book in the series and everything was wrapped up nicely so as not to leave the reader hanging.

I highly recommend this story to fans of historical fiction and those who like books with strong female characters. This book is a positive story in so many ways that it makes for a quick, easy, and fun read.

I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest opinion which I have given.

About the author:  Judith McCoy Miller is an award-winning author whose avid research and love for history are reflected in her bestselling novels. Judy and her husband make their home in Topeka, Kansas.

Connect with Judith Miller:   Website   •   Facebook    •   Twitter

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