About the book:
In 1808, when Emma meets and marries Eric Montclaire (the famed “most handsome man west of the Appalachians”), this young daughter of prominent St. Louis citizens believes a fairy tale has just begun. Instead, her husband’s angelic looks quickly prove only to mask a monstrous soul all too capable of possessive emotions and physical abuse. Praying for mercy, she is devastated when Eric insists on her joining his yearlong group expedition to the Pacific Ocean, following the trail Lewis and Clark blazed just a few years earlier. By the time cartographer Luke Bowen realizes Emma’s plight, it’s too late to easily untangle what has become an epic web of lies, theft, murder, courtroom drama, and a deep longing for love. Only God can show them the way out.
I truly was captivated from the very beginning of this story with the start of new love and a beautiful wedding, but looks certainly were deceiving. What followed was a horrific tale of hidden abuse and pain experienced by Emma. Eric, her groom, was the epitome of all things hateful, and I absolutely despised his treatment of Emma. He made sure that no one knew, except her, what he was really like underneath his "beautiful" exterior.
While, by no means, I thought this was a bad book, I felt it had the potential to be just a little better than it was. For example, the ending felt rushed, and I would've liked the epilogue to have stretched out maybe 2 or 3 years rather than 7 years later. I also would've liked the book to have had more historical elements included in it, particularly about the Lewis and Clark Expedition. And unless I missed it, I think there was an important character left out of the trial at the end.
This was my first opportunity to read anything by Jamie Carie, and in spite of my mixed feelings of this book, I'm anxious to read more of her novels. Her portrayal of each character's emotions was superb, and that left me rooting for the good guys to succeed and the bad guys to fail. It also had a bit of an edgy quality about it, and that made me like it all the more. Angel's Den gets a solid 4 stars from me.