A Big Heart
After The Rain by Rita Gerlach is a Christian historical romance. Set in Washington and then moving to the countryside in 1908, it reminded me of Downton Abbey American style, as upstairs and downstairs mingle.
Louisa lives with her father and a very over-bearing grandmother who desires to be obeyed by everyone at all times. Her grandmother issues orders but never affection. She is a cold hearted bully. Louisa’s friend is her maid Millie. They have a wonderful relationship that stretches beyond the class divide.
Rita Gerlach portrays the differing classes within the novel and reveals a very snobbish attitude of the day. Louisa is rescued from a fall by Jackson, a farmer whom her grandmother looks down on. At first Louisa shares her grandmother’s prejudices but as soon as she gets to know Jackson, Louisa realises “The size of his bank account did not matter. What counted was the size of his heart.” This reminds the reader that God does not look at our outward appearances so much as our inner ones.