Book Review: The Rock by Cara Grandle

Posted June 2, 2021 by meezcarrie in Cara Grandle, Christian, historical, romance / 13 Comments

Sisters of the Porcelain Doll #1

GENRE: Inspirational Historical Romance
PUBLISHER: Ashberry Lane
RELEASE DATE: May 15, 2021
PAGES: 276

After a whiskey still explosion destroys her home and nearly her life, Rebecca Packwood and her father must leave Missouri and her dear friends behind. After crossing The Oregon Trail, she sets out to discover her family’s secret history and to forge a home and community out of the raw farm land of Eagle Creek, Oregon Country, never suspecting a ruthless enemy is seeking to thwart her plans.

Hard-working banker’s son, Clark Sutherland, thought the toughest test he would face was getting out from underneath his father’s thumb. The last thing he expected was to be penniless, homeless, and smitten with a shy, dark-eyed stranger. With nothing to offer her, will he find a way to support himself and still pursue his dreams before they’re pulled apart?

When a man in shadows sets his eyes on their coveted prize, danger descends. Rebecca and Clark must act to protect the desires of their hearts before harm befalls them all. Will they learn to trust their future to the God who heals and sets the lonely in families?


The Rock by Cara Grandle is a sweet debut novel that embodies all that is lovely about historical romance. Rebecca is instantly a character readers will sympathize with and welcome into their hearts as a friend. The difficult circumstances of her life, directly related to a father who still lives in a deep grief that he medicates with self-made whiskey, stand in direct contrast to her soft heart and resilient spirit. I enjoyed making her acquaintance on the pages of this novel, and I held my breath along her journey to unravel some long-held family secrets. Not to mention holding my breath during some suspenseful parts of her story…. and the romantical ones. Basically, I needed an alternate oxygen source to read this one 😉

Clark is a fun hero, the lone brother in a sea of sisters, and I had a grin on my face most of the time he was on the page. He has this endearing boyish charm while also growing quickly into a man who must make his own way in life and provide for himself and a future family. I loved these layers to his personality and watching his transformation from self-assured youth to a wiser, more thoughtful man. The way he falls for Rebecca is swoonworthy and sweet, and so is his protective nature.

Bottom Line: The Rock is an entertaining and inspiring debut novel from author Cara Grandle. The ‘sisters of the porcelain doll’ connection (to the plot & the title) is unique, and I’m eager to see how it plays out in future books. Each main player in this sweet tale is layered and draws readers into his or her story & character growth. But beyond the swoony romance & beyond the engaging plot, the best part of this novel is that it points to the One who sets the lonely in families, who knows us each by name, who knows the number of hairs on our head & the number of days in our life. If you’re a fan of Janette Oke, Tracie Peterson, and Rachel Fordham, you’ll want to check out The Rock too!

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 4 stars / loved it!

KissingBook Level: 3 / may forget to breathe on occasion

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Cara Grandle is an author, acquisitions editor, and publicist for WhiteFire Publishing. She is agented by Bob Hostetler with the Steve Laube Agency. She has several years of experience in the writing industry, enough to know it’s hard. It takes courage. She would say, “Don’t be afraid to do the hard things. There are people who need your words.”

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What about you? What makes you want to read The Rock by Cara Grandle?

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13 responses to “Book Review: The Rock by Cara Grandle

  1. Perrianne Askew

    I remember Cara Grandle doing a video for Kate Breslin a while back. Of course I want to read her story because I can still remember her voice in the video. She has a strong, clear voice and I’m sure that shows up in her work.

  2. Faith Creech

    I enjoy Rachel’s books and this one sounds good since I enjoy books about the west and the Oregon Trail. Thanks for the review.

  3. Kay Garrett

    Thank you for your review on “THE ROCK” and bringing a great sounding book to my attention. LOVE the cover!

  4. Alison Boss

    Thanks for your great review, Carrie! Sounds like a sweet story with some interesting twists. 🙂

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