The Wedding Dress
written by Rachel Hauck
published by Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
Why did I pick this book: I saw this book on NetGalley. It looked rather interesting, so I requested a review copy. My request was granted. (I was provided with a digital copy of the book for review purposes.)
Did I enjoy this book: I really did enjoy this book. It was uplifting, exciting, and enjoyable. I read this book every free chance I had and I loved the route it took.
This book starts with Charlotte Malone as the narrator in the present day. Charlotte is an orphan. Her mother died when she was 12 years old in a car accident and she never knew her father, nor does she know any relatives. She has no one except her fiance, Tim. She doesn’t even rely on Tim that much either. She has always been on her own and she is strong, independent.
Tim and Charlotte got engaged after a whirlwind romance…two months after they met in fact. The cards are stacked against them. Tim starts to get cold feet. Charlotte hasn’t even begun to plan the wedding or even look for a dress. An old girlfriend comes back, an overprotective sister-in-law interferes. But the need for both of them to have each other is clearly there throughout.
The narration shifts to Emily in 1912. Emily is engaged to Phillip but is still in love with Daniel – though she won’t admit it. I really like Emily’s character. She seemed to want to make change happen…by being a part of women’s suffrage, hiring an African American to design and sew her wedding dress. She tries to do the right thing…and eventually does in the end.
The story jumps mainly between these two women who are living about a century apart from one another. There are a few other narrator changes, but the story mainly centers on Charlotte and Emily. I wish the author would have told a bit more of Hillary and Mary Grace stories. I understand that theirs were not quite as important as Charlotte or Emily’s but if they were important enough to wear the dress, they were important enough to warrant more story time.
All-in-all, this was a good, clean Christian story that tugs at your heart and leaves you with a smile at the end. I really enjoyed the author’s note at the end (I usually don’t read these). Ms. Hauck explains how this story came about and the metaphor she used…that the dress is like the gospel of Jesus in that he fits each of us no matter what.
Would I recommend it: I would…I may recommend it to my book group.
Will I read it again: I may, especially if I need an uplifting story. And I will if my book group decides to read it.
About the book – MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS: Made in 1912, a wedding dress seems to pick its brides, stay in perfect condition, and fit each of its four wearers perfectly – no alterations needed.
Charlotte Malone owns a bridal boutique. She’s been dressing brides for their big day for years now but when it comes to her own wedding, Charlotte hasn’t even begun to look for a dress. At an auction, Charlotte purchases a worn-out old trunk that had been welded shut. The trunk was said to be a bride’s trunk but the contents are unknown.
Charlotte sets off on an adventure to find out the origin of the trunk, the wedding gown found inside of it, and the brides who have worn the dress before her. Along the way, she finds out more about herself and what love truly is.