REVIEW: Marrying Stone by Pamela Morsi
MARRYING STONE by Pamela Morsi made me laugh and cry due to the heartfelt emotion at the end. A captivating historical rendering of the Ozark people and their traditions, this short novel will win you over with characters who snag your heart.
Why was it in Dorine’s TBR? I’ve had this book since April of 2013. It landed in my Nook TBR along with SIMPLE JESS and THE LOVESICK CURE. After researching this a bit further, I realized that Willaful had a hand in this buying spree, by helping me decide in a discussion on Jill’s review of THE LOVESICK CURE at Goodreads. Since this is a short three-book series, it seemed doable within my limited reading time. Apparently, I’m a little slow because I’m finally getting to them four years later!
This book suits the series catch-up theme of Wendy’s TBR Challenge, but I’m starting a new series instead of catching up on a familiar one. I generally stay away from series books just because I can’t read them as fast as most authors write them. I prefer to mix up my reading with various authors, mostly new-to-me, due to limited time and the need for an eclectic experience.
In the NOOK digital version, this book is listed as 212 pages, which appealed to me for this challenge. I can’t seem to read anything longer during the summer and barely finished this one in time. The paperback versions are listed as 326 to 427 pages, so I’m not sure what’s right. It felt like a short novel to me, so I highly doubt if it was ever 427 pages unless it was large print or words were added significantly.
The premise of a scholar going to a primitive section of the Ozarks to collect songs for their historical value appealed to me. I’m sure I’ve seen a movie about this, and the first part of the book seemed vaguely familiar. I never figured out the book or movie that may have triggered my memory, so maybe someone else can help me remember.
In the beginning, the story moved slower and maybe it’s because I kept thinking I’ve heard this story before. Even so, about one third into it the characters captured my attention. Meggie is a simple gal with a huge heart, who has fairytale dreams of a prince coming to marry her. Roe is a scholar who thinks highly of his knowledge and standing at Cambridge, but discovers quite quickly that book knowledge isn’t always as wise as tradition or experience.
I got frustrated with Meggie’s resistance to Roe’s charms, but by the end of the book, I understood her completely. Every character is individually rendered in such a way that I grew to love them all, but Simple Jess stole the show. I can’t wait to read the rest of his story in SIMPLE JESS.
It’s rare that I buy a whole series before reading any of them in it, but I’m so glad I have all three of MARRYING STONE so there’s no reason to put off completing the series. Some of the simple antidotes spoken by the characters about life and love are so touching. I can’t wait to discover what else will be revealed through their no-nonsense approach to life. I also enjoyed the historical detail that added some laughter. It was a simpler time with many challenges but there wasn’t a lack of joy.
This book took a while to grab my emotion, but when it did I was all in. I believed every word, even the lies, and my heart wailed for the injustice of it all. The end was perfect, including the laugh-out-loud moments that made me love this book even more. MARRYING STONE is definitely a keeper and a treasure from the romance books written in the 1990s. Thanks to my Goodreads friends for the recommendation!
Review by Dorine, courtesy of The Zest Quest. Digital copy purchased.
Marrying Stone by Pamela Morsi
Series: Marrying Stone, Book 1
Category: Historical Romance
Publisher: originally published August 1st 1994 by Jove
Rated 4 out of 5
July 20, 2017 at 12:12 pm
Oooh, this one counts as an oldie but goodie. I love those. Sometimes you want to fall into a lovely historical romance. Great review!
July 20, 2017 at 12:20 pm
Definitely an oldie but goodie, Lynn. Thanks so much!
July 20, 2017 at 2:02 pm
This sounds like such a great book. (And a British professor from Oxbridge? You know that’s the way to reel me in.) I have read one book by Morsi before, and while I have forgotten the title, I remember liking it so much that I remembered her name. And I like difficult characters that the authors take up and have them grow into maturity.
July 21, 2017 at 12:59 am
I hope you enjoy it as much as I did, Keira. 🙂
July 23, 2017 at 11:18 pm
I love me some Pamela Morsi – although I don’t think I have this one buried in the TBR. Which is odd since I read Simple Jess (many moons ago!) and LOVED it! (She’s starting to re-release a lot of her older historicals in digital – I need to fill in what I’m missing).
I also highly recommend Courting Miss Hattie (friends-to-lovers!) and Wild Oats (virgin hero!). Set in the same world but not directly tied into this particular loosely connected series.
July 24, 2017 at 11:13 am
oh good! Many more to look forward to – I’ve been eying Wild Oats, so I’m glad it’s one you recommend. Courting Miss Hattie sounds good, too. 🙂
July 24, 2017 at 12:45 am
You might be remembering the movie “Songcatcher.” http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0210299/plotsummary?ref_=tt_ov_pl
I’m so glad you enjoyed the book and still have more to read. 🙂 I just read Morsi’s The Love Charm, which has some similarities, though the setting is quite different.
July 24, 2017 at 11:25 am
Songcatcher is a possibility. Thanks for the memory, Willaful. I’m thrilled that she has such a good backlist.
July 24, 2017 at 9:57 am
I love Pamela Morsi’s books and I loved this book. I have not read Simple Jess yet, but I have read The Lovesick Cure…and adored it. You have to read Red’s Hot Honky-Tonk Bar. This was my first book I ever read by her and I was hooked.
July 24, 2017 at 11:25 am
The title alone sounds fun, Kathleen. Thanks for the recommend. 🙂