Review: A Talent for Trouble by Jen Turano

talentfortroubleA TALENT FOR TROUBLE (Ladies of Distinction, Book#3)
Jen Turano
Bethany House Publishers
Publication Date: October 1, 2013

From the back cover:

Miss Felicia Murdock firmly believed her destiny was to become a minister’s wife. When the minister on whom she had set her sights marries another lady, Felicia is forced to take a close look at her life and comes to a few uncomfortable conclusions. Determined that something needs to change–and soon–Felicia discovers she is finally ready to spread her wings and embrace life the way she’s always wanted.

Grayson Sumner–or Lord Sefton, as he’s officially known–has had more than enough of spreading his wings and only hopes to settle into the life of a normal, respectable New York gentleman. Prompted by some well-meaning friends to lift the spirits of the disappointed-in-love Miss Murdock, he is surprised to encounter a young lady who seems to have become quite adventurous and quite determined to get herself into all sorts of troublesome situations.

Intent on remaining independent, Felicia is reluctant to accept Grayson’s help, especially as she finds herself developing feelings for him. However, just as Grayson decides he’s had quite enough of her antics, his past comes back to haunt him and his presence in her life has endangered Felicia. Will Grayson and Felicia decide they want to spend the rest of their lives keeping one another out of trouble?

This was my second Jen Turano read (the first being A CHANGE OF FORTUNE) and I am quickly beginning to realize that her trademark sparkling wit and energizing dialogue will shine through no matter what she writes.

Felicia is a quirky, independent character who is forever getting herself into trouble (hence the title!). As the story opens, she is mourning the preacher’s marriage to another woman. Felicia had been in love with the preacher for some time and had hoped that she would be the one joining him at the altar, but as she watches him recite his vows to another woman, she realizes that she has spent so much time turning herself into the woman she thought he would want her to be, that she doesn’t even recognize herself anymore.

What follows is a journey to self-discovery, filled with mischief and adventure, and the insufferable Lord Sefton…who somehow becomes a whole lot less insufferable to Felicia as the story progresses. Lord Sefton (Grayson Sumner) is riddled with guilt over both the way he abandoned his sister Eliza and the things he has seen and done while away. He no longer believes in happy-ever-afters, nor does he believe he deserves love. All he wants is to see that his daughter is well taken care of, and do what he can to redeem himself (though he is certain he’ll never get to that point).

While Felicia learns to listen to what God wants her to be, rather than what others expect her to be, Grayson learns that no one is beyond redemption. God’s grace is sufficient for even the most irredeemable, and that lesson gives him the courage to believe in a life with Felicia.

With intrigue and zany anecdotes, Jen Turano excels at romantic comedy, bringing both laughs and a poignant lesson to every story. I look forward to her next book!




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