On his way to interview for a position at a church in the Piney Woods of Texas, Crockett Archer can scarcely believe it when he’s forced off the train by a retired outlaw and presented to the man’s daughter as the minister she requested for her birthday. Worried this unfortunate detour will ruin his chances of finally serving a congregation of his own, Crockett is determined to escape. But when he finally gets away, he’s haunted by the memory of the young woman he left behind–a woman whose dreams now hinge on him.
For months, Joanna Robbins prayed for a preacher. A man to breathe life back into the abandoned church at the heart of her community. A man to assist her in fulfilling a promise to her dying mother. A man to help her discover answers to the questions that have been on her heart for so long. But just when it seems God has answered her prayers, it turns out the parson is there against his will and has dreams of his own calling him elsewhere. Is there any way she can convince Crockett to stay in her little backwoods community? And does the attraction between them have any chance of blossoming when Joanna’s outlaw father is dead set against his daughter courting a preacher?
Honesty time!!! You know that moment when you get a book that you have been waiting a while to read and your all giddy with excitement?? Yes?? Well that is how I was when I got my hands on Stealing the Preacher by Karen Witemeyer. Yes, I know I have issues. I have read, wait I am being honest, no devoured all of Karen Witemeyer’s books. I love her humor, settings and most of all her characters.
We meet back up with Crockett Archer on his way too his new preaching position. If you have read Witemeyer’s previous book Short Straw Bride then you will know Crockett. (But you do not have to read it to understand this one). But as it turns out God has other plans as he is abducted, given as a birthday present, then ends up preaching at a church he never intended to preach at.
Joanna is floored with her father’s birthday present and proceeds to let Crockett go. Reluctantly of course. In a turn of events Joanna and Crockett end up working together to restore a church near Joanna’s home. Crockett and Joanna are presented of course with many challenges in their attempt to revive the church. Everything from weather, to injuries, to people who disagree with what they are doing.
The story should have worked. It had all the right elements but somehow it just fell flat in the end. Don’t get me wrong the book was good, just not great. It just seemed off of Karen Witemeyer’s usual standards. There were, at times, when I felt that Joanna and Crockett just didn’t have the chemistry they needed to carry the story any farther.
Like I said it was a good book, just not great. I would still recommend this book for my friends if they needed some light reading. By no means will this book stop me from reading Karen Witemeyer’s books in the future.
I received this book from Bethany House Publishing in exchange for my honest review. No other goods were exchanged.