In the Shadow of Denali, by Tracie Peterson and Kimberly Woodhouse, is the first book in The Heart of Alaska series. It is set in 1923 in Curry, Alaska, mile 248 on the Alaska Railroad. The story takes place as the Curry Hotel is preparing for a visit from President Harding to dedicate the new Mount McKinley National Park.
John and Cassidy Ivanoff work at the prestigious Curry Hotel. John is a well-known guide for wilderness and exploration. His daughter, Cassidy, is the cook’s assistant in the kitchen. Allan Brennan arrives at the Curry Hotel to begin his new job as apprentice to the mountain guide, hoping to learn more about his father’s death while climbing the mountain six years earlier. When John, who led Henry Brennan’s climb and still feels guilty about his death, and Allan meet, it is awkward to say the least. Having been told that the guide was responsible for his father’s death, Allan is angry with John. But as he gets to know the man, he finds it more and more difficult to believe that John could do such a thing, a situation more complicated by his feeling for Cassidy.
This was a wonderful story. The descriptions of the scenery were amazing, as well as the character development. I loved the way Allan took the time to get to know John, giving him a chance to explain what happened and eventually forgiving him. I also especially enjoyed Mrs. Johnson, who had a soft heart underneath all that hardened exterior.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian historical fiction.
I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.