Tamera Alexander is by far one of the best story tellers in historical fiction. Her attention to detail, realistic characters, and ability to convey genuine emotion make every novel she pens one that I will read over and over again. To Wager Her Heart is no exception. Like the two books that precede it, To Whisper Her Name and To Win Her Favor, I was captivated from the first chapter. I quickly became invested in the story of Alexandra Jamison and Sylas Rutledge.
Alexandra Jamison is a young woman who has known tragedy and loss. Looking for purpose, Alexandra takes on a teaching position at Fisk University and loses what is left of her family. She meets an undignified Sylas Rutledge who becomes an important friend despite her first impressions. I love the way this story unfolds! I so appreciate the way the relationship between Alexandra and Sylas develops. I also enjoyed the history Tamera Alexander included regarding Fisk University and the Jubilee Singers. There is a moment in the beginning of the novel where Alexandra mistakes a generous colleague for a maid. It was in that part of the story, that I began to appreciate how well Tamera Alexander creates flawed characters that we can fall in love with! I was literally embarrassed for the main character…I felt what she felt. This is the mark of a great novel.
If you love historical fiction, To Wager Her Heart is a must read! I am admittedly a huge Tamera Alexander fan and I am always aware of when she has a new release coming out. I have read every single novel she has written and they are all fantastic. However, I must say, the Belle Meade Plantation Novels have been my favorite. You do not have to read them in sequential order as they easily stand alone. But you should definitely read the entire series! I was given an Advanced Reader’s Copy by the publisher. I was not required to give a positive review. ( I would have purchased this book anyway…it was on my MUST READ list.)