Dastardly Villains and Handsome Heroes
The Steeplechase by Carrie Fancett Pagels is a good old fashioned Christian historical romantic adventure. There is something for everyone – a handsome hero, a brave and beautiful heroine, sibling rivalry, sibling bonding, a dastardly villain, talk of spies and duelling. I really enjoyed it and could not put it down.
The story is set in America in 1810. Any meetings or friendship with the British is viewed with suspicion. Martha’s stepmother is British so the whole family is viewed with caution. She is visiting her family in England. Martha is relieved to be free from her constant demands. There is something about her like the stepmother in Cinderella, even though the reader does not meet her, it is implied.
There is a beautiful bond between Martha and her stepbrother six year old Johnny. Abandoned at school, it seems like only Martha cares that he is unhappy. Her desire is to have Johnny home again. Carrie Fancett Pagels in her writing has delightfully captured Johnny’s character and personality.