Book Review: In the Land of Gold

review-cover-in the land of goldTitle: In the Land of Gold

Author: Angela Christina Archer

Genre: Historical->1897, Romance

Rating: 4 Stars

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Description/Synopsis:

Cora Colton can’t believe she even doubts saying yes to Christopher Payton’s proposal. From a good family, wealthy, and charming, Christopher is perfect for her. However, seeing his band of gold and diamonds, she hesitates. Something is missing, something is wrong, but she just doesn’t know what that something is.

After her father’s sudden death, Cora travels to Tacoma and learns that she is now the owner of his gold claim in Dawson City, Canada. Throwing caution to the wind, she leaves her engagement ring on the table, and departs for Canada and the adventure of a lifetime.

Arriving in the canvas tent town of Skagway on the Klondike trail, Coral catches the attention of Flynn O’Neill, an Irishman who has lived on the trail, guiding stampeeders for a few years. A bond thrusts them together, but their pasts could be what tears them apart—if they can survive the hardships and death on the trail to the land of gold.

WARNING – SPOILERS MAY ENSUE BEYOND THIS POINT – REVIEW BELOW

In the Land of Gold by Angela Christina Archer is a quaint, clean romance about the love between a gold miner’s daughter and the Irish trail guide who leads her through Canada and up into the Klondike. The story was short, fast-paced, and easy to read.

Technically speaking, the book was fairly well written. At times the narrative could be a little wordy and overdone—there were sentence fragments, missing/misused words, and a few issues with the tense, but most of these incidences were small and easily skimmed over. The majority of the book flowed well and I never felt the need to re-read an awkward sentence of double-guess a meaning. The errors I found didn’t prevent me from enjoying the book, and the copy I received was an ARC, so I’m willing to set my complaints about the quality of the editing aside—I’ve certainly seen far worse.

The characters themselves were both endearing, hilariously funny, and engaging. I loved Cora Colton as the female lead in this story, and Flynn O’Neill made my heart want to melt into slush. Snowball. That’s all I have to say—readers, you’ll understand, I’ll leave it at that. The romance between Cora and Flynn was easy and charming in the best possible way. My only complaint is that I didn’t have another 200 pages to spend with them.

Now let’s talk about why I gave this four stars instead of five. The book was incredibly fast-paced… which isn’t a bad thing, but towards the end of the story the pace seemed to gear up to an unreasonable sprint. For a few chapters, it was drama-drama-drama—one huge event after another, and it felt a little forced and melodramatic. Large periods of time passed between the major dramatic events, but those time periods were skimmed over in such a way that their impact was barely felt. It felt like BAM!Two months passed. BAM!A week passed. BAM! The year is over… and I hardly had time to breathe before the next crisis popped up. I wish the pace had slowed down a little in those areas. The side effect of this was that the romance between Cora and Flynn also sped along at an unreasonable pace. They went from tentative friends to declaring love in a chapter, and as much as I loved the couple, that was too quick for me. I think a lot of the tension in their relationship and their journey was lost in the way it was handled.

Overall, I enjoyed the book. I had some doubts at the very beginning due to the editing, but by the end of the second chapter I was sucked in completely. I found the story engaging and entertaining right up until the very end (when everything suddenly sped up). The end was a bit abrupt to me, but that didn’t lessen my overall enjoyment of the book. If you’re looking for a clean, endearing romance filled with adventure and historical escapades, you’re probably going to like this book. It made a quick afternoon read for me, and I’m glad to have read it.

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