Shadow of the Hawk by K.S. Jones
Publisher: Astraea Press
Length: Full length (358 pgs)
Age Recommendation: 14+
Rating: 4 stars
Review by: Poinsettia
It is May 1932 and life in the timbered rise and fall of Western Arkansas has just gotten harder for sixteen-year-old Sooze Williams. With debt mounting and both friends and family fleeing, Sooze is determined to ‘do the right thing’. She promises her heart to a well-to-do man believing true love is just another loss along the way.
But when her uncle is murdered and family is accused of the crime, Sooze vows not to be beaten. Is salvation within her grasp by relying solely on truth, or is it in the security of her intended’s money? Sooze must decide before it’s too late.
Is marrying for money the only way to keep Sooze’s family from falling apart?
Sooze and her family don’t have a lot, but they are a pretty close knit group and are doing their best to keep their farm going. However, it isn’t long before tragedy strikes them hard and fast. As I read, it seemed that the Williams family was caught in a downward spiral they just couldn’t to pull out of. My heart ached as Sooze and her family try to cope. I recommend readers keep a box of tissues handy as they read about the hardships Sooze and her family face.
Sooze is a very sweet girl who sincerely tries to do the right thing even if it makes her unhappy. Her selfless attitude and devotion to her family are commendable. Sooze is smart and definitely strong willed, but her decision to accept David’s proposal of marriage was never a good idea. The money she would earn working in the store David’s family owns would certainly go a long way toward helping her family out, and even Sooze’s parents seem to suggest that marrying David is in her best interest. It is no wonder that Sooze felt she had no choice. However, there is absolutely nothing appealing about David. He is selfish, uncaring, and unwilling to help Sooze’s family out in even the smallest of ways. I’m really not sure I even understand why David was so set on marrying Sooze in the first place. He professed to love her, but never showed it, and his treatment of the rest of her family is terrible and quite shocking at times. Sooze’s relationship with David continued to deteriorate throughout the book. She could barely stand to be around him for more than a few minutes, so I have no idea how she thought she’d be able to endure being married to him.
I kept hoping that Sooze would find someone truly worthy of her heart. Then Thomas came into town like a knight in shining armor. Thomas is the complete opposite of David. He’s kind, considerate, and always willing to help out. From the moment Sooze and David meet, there is a connection. Unfortunately, Thomas’ family has fallen on hard times and he can’t provide the kind of money that David and his family have. Can Sooze afford to follow her heart?
I really enjoyed reading Shadow of the Hawk. Sooze is a wonderful character, and the ending of her story is so intense I raced through the pages wondering if her family would finally get the justice they sought. I recommend this book to readers looking for a powerful tale of love and family.