Thursday, 12 May 2016

Book Review: Carry Me Home by Dorothy Adamek

Finella Mayfield hates two things: liars and thieves. And she's determined to marry a man who's neither. Chasing her dead father's dreams, the twenty-year-old English bride arrives in Australia in 1875 for an arranged marriage. Anticipating her future as village preacher's wife, she records her thoughts in her Everlasting journal. But instead of her fiancé, Finella is met by Shadrach Jones, a poor farmer sent to collect her from the busy Melbourne pier.
This is not what her father planned. And it's only the beginning of the unraveling of Finella Mayfield ~ the bride with no groom. All Shadrach longs for is rows of mustard and chicory. He's busy growing a farm near the Phillip Island fishing village of Cowes, and caring for Molly, his simple sister. Far from the brutal life they remember with their ex-convict father, Shadrach's building something new. But he's also made a promise to a dying friend. To collect and marry the English girl destined to never be a preacher's wife.  Can Shadrach convince Finella she has a future with a farmer?  their future?

My Review 
This is definitely one for sweet romance lovers. The story, written alternatively from Finella’s and Shadrach’s points of view, follows the ups and downs and frustrations of their sometimes tender and cheeky and other times fragile and fraught relationship. Both characters are likeable and engaging and both have deep issues which take the story through many twists and turns. Shadrach’s young sister, Molly, is completely endearing, probably my favourite in the story. There are very emotive issues around her character and a reader should expect to shed tears at a number of points.

The setting on Phillip Island is well described. I could sometimes feel the sand or mud between my toes as I read. And there’s an interesting historical and cultural side story about mutton bird egg gathering, which provides some lightness and a good distraction from the interpersonal conflict and agonising over the outcome of the relationship.

Dorothy addresses the Christian and spiritual values and needs of the characters in a well- balanced, meaningful and sensitive way, which gives a good message without being preachy. The issues of developing trust, adjusting to change, loss and grief, and forgiveness are all woven thoughtfully and realistically into the story, which is still essentially about falling in love.

An excellent first book in a series and I’ll look forward to reading the sequel.  

Carol Preston 

Carol writes historical novels based on her family ancestry in Australia from the First Fleet. They include the Turning the Tide series; Mary’s Guardian, Charlotte’s Angel, Tangled Secrets and Truly Free. Her earlier novels Suzannah’s Gold and Rebecca’s Dream were re-released by EBP. Her new novel, Next of Kin, was released last year by Rhiza Press and her latest novel, Beyond the Fight was released this April. You can see more about Carol and her novels on her website, her Amazon author page or FB author page .


  1. I'm glad you enjoyed this, Carol. I thought it was excellent and I'm also anxiously awaiting the sequel.

  2. Thanks for the lovely review, Carol. A happy addition to my birthday week. (Yes... I string it along for a whole week, if possible.)

    So glad you enjoyed Carry Me Home. Always fun to discover a new reader.

  3. I'm patiently waiting for the next instalment too!


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