Book Review: An Uncertain Choice by Jody Hedlund
Recently, I was chosen to be on the Influencer Team for Jody Hedlund’s upcoming YA novel, An Uncertain Choice. If you know me, then you know that I’m a HUGE fan of Jody’s books, so this great news had me completely GEEKING!
You can imagine how much more enthusiastic I was when I got the Advanced Reader Copy from the publisher, Zondervan. (Yeah, I couldn’t stop smiling or gazing at the gorgeous cover as it sat on my coffee table begging me to read it.)
I knew I was going to LOVE the book, so when I was asked to write a review on my website, I eagerly agreed! There isn’t a book by Jody Hedlund that I have read and not enjoyed. I liken her ability to put words on a page to that of a contemporary Jane Austen. She’s got the propensity of finding just the right descriptive word or phrase to fit the situations her characters are facing. Her tendency toward strong female protagonists is one of the biggest draws for me as a reader, and Lady Rosemarie does not disappoint!
Lady Rosemarie, though young, is a determined, yet compassionate protagonist. We first meet her in the prequel, The Vow, which I highly recommend if you’re planning to read An Uncertain Choice. Her noble parents, unable to conceive, are desperate for a child and an heir to their kingdom. In exchange for a tear from the Virgin Mary, they offer their child to God for a life of service beginning on her eighteenth birthday. Resigned to this commitment, Rosemarie releases her hopes for a husband and family of her own. However, one month before her birthday, her father’s dearest friend, the Noblest Knight, appears in the kingdom. With him, he brings three of his cherished, most chivalrous knights and word of an unexpected loophole. If Rosemarie finds true love before her eighteenth birthday, she will be released from the vow.
Three handsome guys who would die to protect her honor.
One month of wooing and romantic courtship.
What seventeen-year-old girl in her right mind wouldn’t love this new development?
Of course, Rosemarie is cautious. She takes some time to decide whether or not she’s comfortable with this situation. After prayer and consideration, she agrees to let Sir Derrick, Sir Collin, and Sir Bennett court her for the four weeks leading up to her birthday. During the courtship, Rosemarie finds herself drawn to one knight in particular. Could he be the one she will share her life with? His honorable pursuits seem to align perfectly with her compassionate endeavors. Unfortunately for her, her favored knight also appears to be the only one not playing by the rules. How could one so perfect for her be capable of such malicious acts?
This fast-paced plot, full of romantic twists and action-packed turns, will pull you in and hold you captive until the very last page.
Jody’s ability to create a realistic chemistry between characters while keeping their relationship pure is very admirable in today’s literary world. Sadly, it’s hard to find good romance books for teenagers that are not overly sexual. The romance in this book is very appropriate for both middle and high school students. It reminds us that romance, chivalry, and compassion for the less-fortunate are all very attractive qualities in a male. While the spiritual themes are there, they’re not overly pronounced. An Uncertain Choice would be appropriate for both public and private school libraries. On a final note, there are some graphic scenes that describe the types of torture used during the medieval period, so if you’re thinking of letting a younger reader pick this one up, you might want to read through it first. Jody has an awesome ability to make you feel like you’re in the moment, which is one of the reasons I found it hard to put this book down once I started it. So if you’re still uncertain about the choice to read it, let me help you decide.
An Uncertain Choice is one of the best YA books I have read in recent years, and I highly recommend it to readers of all ages!
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an unbiased review.