All Things Beautiful
Uncharted Beginnings book 3
Keely Brooke Keith
Historical fiction with fantasy elements
Edenbrooke Press, Nashville, TN
Buy on Amazon
Buy on Barnes and Noble
About the Book
It’s 1868 in the settlement of Good Springs, and Hannah Vestal is passionate about writing fiction and keeping her stories to herself. By lantern light she slips into her story world and dreams the adventures she’ll never experience. When her father asks to read her work, she decides to have it printed secretly for his 50th birthday. Hannah tries to arrange the printing with the settlement’s pressman, but the witty and dapper Henry Roberts won’t make it easy for her to prove her writing is worthy of his ink.
If Henry Roberts did nothing else for the rest of his life but print and bind books, he would die a satisfied man. In order to secure settlement support for his printing press, the elder council says Henry must print an error-free copy of the New Testament before the settlement’s 8th anniversary celebration. He is determined to meet their challenge, but when the enigmatic Hannah proves to be a beguiling distraction, Henry longs for something more than a life at the letterpress.
In this third stand-along novel in the Uncharted series, Keith’s marooned but making the best of it culture at long last has time to invest in events not directly tied to survival—reading for knowledge and pleasure, finishing a library building, developing new material to read, perhaps a way to share news and information. The year is 1868, seven years after Landing. Five and a half years earlier, Hannah Vestal promised her dying mother to put the family first. The oldest in a family which includes two brothers and three sisters, Hannah’s time is controlled by running a busy household. The villagers have sorted themselves into their mutual trades, so each family isn’t responsible for self-sustenance. Hannah makes candles which she can trade for things like paper on which to write her story. Since losing her mother’s encouragement, Hannah shares her story with her friend, the village teacher, Olivia. Olivia helps her find the strength to complete her story and have it printed.
Meanwhile, the printer, Henry Roberts, has exchanged his birthright farming with his younger brother Simon who is more suited to caring for the animals and crops. Their father, who ran the printing press, invested Henry with the press, but Henry had been hurt years earlier while helping build the family barn. Now, with pain in both damaged hand and pride, and two unsuccessful passing love interests behind, he decides bachelorhood is his fate. His almost obsessive-compulsive need for order and realism doesn’t translate to the finest of courtly personalities, and when Hannah, courage screwed on, approaches him for a book publishing deal, his business-like response causes both of them to review their lifestyle choices. With the aid of loving family and friends, Hannah and Henry meet their challenges and come out stronger on the other side. Keith ends this story with a lovely tie-in to the contemporary Uncharted series.
Told through alternating perspectives, All Things Beautiful is a revelation of what matters in life. The story is an exploration of the depth of heart and soul and the willingness to see and grown beyond our capabilities. Well-done. Recommended for those who enjoy historical drama with a faint twist of unusual circumstances. This is a stand-alone story with good set-up of the situation, so readers can jump in anywhere and enjoy any story of The Uncharted stories.
About the Author
Keely Brooke Keith writes inspirational frontier-style fiction with a twist, including The Land Uncharted (Shelf Unbound Notable Romance 2015) and Aboard Providence (2017 INSPY Awards Longlist). Keely also creates resources for writers such as The Writer’s Book Launch Guide and The Writer’s Character Journal. Born in St. Joseph, Missouri, Keely grew up in a family that frequently relocated. By graduation, she lived in 8 states and attended 14 schools. When she isn’t writing, Keely enjoys playing bass guitar, preparing homeschool lessons, and collecting antique textbooks. Keely, her husband, and their daughter live on a hilltop south of Nashville, Tennessee.