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on April 14, 2012
I was blown away by this beautiful, awe-inspiring tale of one dress that spans--and impacts--the lives of four special women. The Wedding Dress revolves around Charlotte Malone and her discovery of the dress within an old, beaten trunk...and the path down memory lane that it took her on.

While Charlotte was the main character this story revolved around, there were a lot of other central characters as well. And while one might think that this would get confusing, Rachel Hauck did an outstanding job in making each person unique and stand out to the reader. I just loved the funny quirks some of them had! Especially the "Man in Purple" character. Put me in mind of all those sayings about 'angels in our midst'. I can't say who my favorite character was, or who I bonded with the most--the entire cast was so memorable!

I've never read anything by Hauck before, so wasn't sure what to expect from the author when beginning The Wedding Dress. But she won me over almost instantly! The way she transports her readers between historical and contemporary times was really neat, unique, and well done.

The writing style was sharp and vivid, grabbing my attention from the first page. There were several passionate kisses between characters, but Hauck keeps the details down, making The Wedding Dress a book to be recommended for both older and younger readers--anyone who is a true romantic at heart will be heaving sighs and wiping tears by the end. I highly recommend!

I reviewed this book for Thomas Nelson via Litfuse. It was not required that I give a positive review, but solely to express my own thoughts and opinions of this book, which I have done.
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on April 9, 2012
A year ago, I crossed something off my bucket list.

I attended a writing workshop in Tulsa, Okla., led by Rachel Hauck.

It was a cool day, because I met a couple of neat writers, got some ideas (I'm really a non-fiction writer who dreams of writing a novel) and met Hauck.

Basically, I got to sit at her feet (OK, it was at a table in a church's meeting room), and listen to her talk writing and how she got lots of her ideas.

She also talked about writing a book a book about a wedding dress that fits four women - kind of a "traveling pants" meets romance and bridal wear.

Kind of a cool concept. (Although, I'm still waiting for the vampire Amish tale the workshop participants kept joking about.)

Well, fast forward - a year later, I had the opportunity to review The Wedding Dress - the book Hauck talked about in the workshop.

A book about four women - who all fit inside the dress WITHOUT alteration.

Spanning multiple generations, Hauck crafts a tale that unites a group of women - three still living - showing their common interests, ties and faith. She also weaves in a hint of mystery and intrigue (and a really interesting character wearing purple!).

It's a fun book. In the beginning the dialogue jumps back and forth between Charlotte and the original owner. We see similarities to their struggles for love and acceptance. As it continues, we meet the other two owners and see how they are all linked together by the dress and more.

Like other books I've read written by Hauck, the novel's characters are enjoyable and the plot captures your attention.

On the scale of one to five, I give this book a four.Fun and humorous, The Wedding Dress would make a great "tuck in your bag" on a vacation or "rainy day" read.
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on March 15, 2012
It seems like I'm practically gushing about each of the books I reviewed lately and this is no exception. Rachel Hauck's newest book tells the story of a wedding dress that is almost magical, finding its own way to brides that need it. The Wedding Dress 'takes the stories of each of the four women who have worn this magical dress and weaves them together in to an intriguing novel. As the stories of the dress and its wearers evolved I found myself more engaged in the story with each turn of the page. Hauck blends historical fiction, modern fiction and a bit of suspense into a story told so beautifully I didn't want the book to end. It's one of those stories that you wish was really true, a story so compelling that you long to be a part of it.

This is the first book I've read by Rachel Hauck and if her others are anything like this one, I think I'll be adding more of her books to my library.

Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided for this review. All thoughts are my own and I was not required to post a positive review.
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on January 24, 2013
"The Wedding Dress" by Rachel Hauck is a little bit of every kind of book I love! It's a contemporary novel. It's a historical novel. It's a fairytale with a mystical wedding dress and, perhaps, a fairy godfather. It's an allegory. It's full of romance and mystery and heartache and joy. I'm pretty sure it's the very best book I've had the privilege to read yet this year!

When Charlotte and her ex-fiancé find a wedding dress in a trunk that she purchased at an auction kinda-sorta reluctantly, they wonder what it means. The dress was supposedly made in 1912, but looks brand new and never worn. Charlotte sets out to solve the mystery, following the clues found on a pair of dog tags and a pie shop business card. As she works her way back in time, author Rachel Hauck takes readers straight to the beginning . . .

In 1912, Emily Canton is engaged to Phillip Saltonstall. But Daniel Ludlow longs to win her hand. As far as Emily is concerned, she's given her word to Phillip. It's too late for changes to be made. But is Phillip as honorable to his word as Emily is to hers?

Between these stories, there are two more--of Hillary and MaryGrace. All are connected beautifully into one amazing story--about a wedding dress and the brides it seems to choose.

I thank Thomas Nelson Publishers for sending a complimentary copy of this book for my review. I truly enjoyed the story and am sure others will, too.
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on February 21, 2016
The preachy, predictable plot proceeds from a beginning scene that remains unexplained. The characters are shallow and inconstant, with not much to like about them. For a story developed around a mysterious wedding dress, the author did not bother to find out much at all about textiles and fine dressmaking methods. Silk is a fiber, satin is a weaving style. A textile can be satin made from silk, satin made from some other fiber, or silk in a weave other than satin - there is no either/or involved. The difference between hand sewn stitches and machine stitches is blatantly obvious and would not require experience or special knowledge to identify. For a silk dress to be worn by three different women over 100 years and still be spotless is simply not possible, especially one stored in a wooden box in a basement for 40 of those years. I guess this was more of the constant divine intervention into very small matters. There are so many anachronisms and out of place speech patterns it's ridiculous. I'd give it only one star, but I try not to waste "hate" on anything this insubstantial.
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on April 11, 2016
I was really excited about reading this book. An old trunk with a lock welded shut purchased at auction begins the story and then splits between a budding suffragette and a contemporary woman who owns a wedding dress boutique. Great promise. Then it becomes Christian. Nowhere in any of the promotions did I read religion was an element. The religion overshadows the story line and for me, pollutes it. I am not anti-Christian or religion, just would have liked to know up front that this is where the book was headed. I didn't finish it. Great story possibilities.
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on April 5, 2016
Unbelievable story seeped in christianity which must be for young adults. Corny. I only finished it out of curiosity, It didn't pull together well and left much to the religious imagination. How else could a 100 year old dress not have aged and fit four different brides!
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on April 6, 2016
I'm astounded by the number of positive reviews this book has received. I usually wait until the end of the month to order my free Kindle book so I can see the reviews and use those to make my selection. Before writing this review, I reread the description to make sure I remembered it correctly, and I did. Not stated in the description is the fact that this book is best intended for a Christian book club, if that, although the naive interpretation of God and the mysterious magical powers of the dress and its purple-clothed guardian raise lots of theological questions. I often wonder who read and enjoyed the used book I buy or the items I purchase secondhand, so I was a bit intrigued and expected an interesting tale of the history of a vintage dress and the search for its previous owners. What I got was a bunch of shallow, one-dimensional characters, a very rudimentary interpretation of faith, a predictable storyline and a lot of magical hogwash. Thrown in is just a lot of nonsense, such as an unexpected anonymous gift of $100,000, to try to tie together loose ends in an already unbelievable tale. The book lacks any real depth but did have the potential to be an interesting story without magic and blind faith thrown into it. As it is, it is not worth the read, either from a religious or a literary viewpoint.
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on March 5, 2016
Christian romance that portrays God as a magician who magically can make a wedding dress fit the right bride. Really? The girl who has the dress made is referenced several generations later as courageous, when really she couldn't make up her mind until her father pushed her into a decision. Stupid storyline with childish interpretation of God. Skip this one.
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on June 22, 2012
It took me a very long time to read this book (between entertaining my 4-year-old and getting my own work done), but I'm glad I kept at it.

For the most part, I really liked the book. I enjoyed the modern day story. The historical part of the book (which I didn't realize was going to be a storyline before I started reading it) took me a little longer to get into, but it's just because I prefer modern stories over historical ones. It all ended up being really good though.

The story of the life of the wedding dress was great. What I didn't like was that it seemed to have powers. That didn't work for me. And I'm not sure what to think of the guy in purple who seemed to span a hundred years and not change. I'm thinking he was supposed to represent God. If that's the case, I'm a little uncomfortable with that as well. I don't think God should be portrayed as a weirdo with bad fashion sense.

Other than those two things, I thought the book was a good read. The character of Charlotte was great (although her name and the historical character's name got accidentally switched a couple of times in the book). I would give the book 3.5 stars. The things that keep it from being a 5 for me are the two things mentioned in the above paragraph and the ending was a little hokey, and unrealistic. But I have a feeling, the author wasn't going for realistic in this book. It lies a little more on the fantastic side of things.

Thank you to the publisher for providing this ebook for review.
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