Title: Stealing Jake
Author: Pam Hillman
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers
Date: June 2011
Genre: Historical Romance
Reviewed by: Lena Nelson Dooley
Stealing Jake, Pam Hillman’s debut novel, reveals an evil situation prevalent in the 1800s. By 1874, child labor laws had been passed, but the practice of working children in sweatshops hadn’t been eradicated. Her book reveals the dangers in coal mining at that time as well, and her scenes set in the mines gave me claustrophobia.
The main characters, a deputy sheriff and a reformed, former child pickpocket from the streets of Chicago, meet in a small town not far from there. Of course, their histories make them distrust each other from the beginning.
I love the way Hillman reveals the evil, and at the same time, provides the answer to the problem. However, the road leading from the problem to the resolution is often a bumpy one. Readers will cheer for the underdogs, despise the villain, and want the hero and heroine to realize who they are in the Lord, so their relationship can move on.
Hillman also skillfully creates a vivid setting to frame the story.
Stealing Jake is a Tyndale Electronic First Initiative. With this book on my Kindle, I grabbed it up and read every chance I got, because the story captured my interest and my heart.
Lena Nelson Dooley won the Will Rogers Medallion Award for Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico. She has more than 675,000 books in print, including Maggie’s Journey, McKenna’s Daughter series, book 1.