At Every Turn, by Anne Mateer

Caught up in a whirlwind of religious enthusiasm, Alyce Benson impetuously pledges three thousand dollars to mission work in Africa. Now she just has to find a way to get the money.

Alyce harbors a secret passion for speed and automobiles, and she’s spent many an afternoon driving around the rustic track in the field behind her home. When she discovers that her father’s company has sponsored a racing car that will compete in several upcoming events–races in which the driver will be paid and could win as much as five thousand dollars in prize money–she conspires with her father’s mechanic, Webster, to train and compete.

But when her friends cast aspersions on Webster’s past, she realizes she may have trusted the wrong person with her secret. Will Alyce come up with the money in time, or will she have to choose between her hasty promise and the man who holds a piece of her heart?

Alyce Benson leads a seemingly charmed life. She’s the only child of a wealthy man, and has no need to either work or find a husband to support her. Her father freely gives her money whenever she asks, so she thinks he’ll give her the three thousand dollars she pledged to mission work. But Mr. Benson doesn’t approve of Christianity or of his money being used for Christian causes, and so he denies her request. Alyce must find the money in just seven weeks, but gives away as much as she obtains through her fundraising efforts to causes closer to home. Racing her father’s car sounds like a winning plan, but women aren’t allowed to participate in these competitive events.

Alyce is a woman who grew on me. At first, she comes across as a rich, spoiled young woman. It is only as the story continues that we see the depth of her character. She truly wants to do good things and it’s obvious her motivation isn’t selfishness. But her desires do get her in trouble, especially when she lies to her father. The web of deceit she spins includes her mechanic, Webster, and her father’s bookkeeper, Lawrence Trotter. One of these men uses her secret to his advantage, although I won’t tell you which one. Ultimately, however, Alyce learns some important lessons in trusting God’s timing and working according to His plan.

This is Anne Mateer’s second novel. In my opinion, it doesn’t quite live up to the standard she set with Wings of a Dream but that is always a danger when a debut creative work does so well. At Every Turn is still a worthwhile read, however, and – as well as providing an insight into the early years of motor racing in America – gives the reader a good romance to enjoy.

Publisher:  Bethany House

Publication Date: 01 September 2012

Page Count: 320

Author’s Website   Publisher’s Product Page

Amazon   Barnes and Noble

Thank you to Bethany House for my free copy of At Every Turn, which I received in exchange for an honest review.


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