Reviewed by Amanda Schafer
Margaret O’Brien is a strong person, both physically and emotionally. She is the only remaining child of Paddy O’Brien, owner of a very large Texas cattle ranch. She also struggles with her “unlovability” in that she feels no one will love her the way she has wanted to be loved her whole life. She’s large for a woman, very independent, and has never had boyfriends let alone a proposal for marriage. When her father hires Daniel Cutler as foreman, Margaret immediately gets her dander up because she feels her own position is threatened by this newcomer. When her cousin Lewis shows up and she discovers that her father has changed his will to leave the ranch to Lewis, Margaret becomes even more upset. One evening, Paddy is attacked in their own yard and the search begins to find out who would be sabotaging the ranch and trying to take it from them all.
Daniel Cutler instantly finds himself falling for Margaret but keeps pulling back so that he can complete the job he came to do. Daniel is a part of an outfit that has been robbing banks and is setting up to rob the local bank when a large money shipment is due. Sadly, Margaret overhears several of Daniel’s conversations and is upset with him for his actions but also upset with herself for falling in love with him. But mostly, Margaret is confused because she is constantly hearing Daniel talk of God’s love and God’s grace and she can’t fathom how someone like him, a robber, can speak so freely of God’s love and acceptance.
When Margaret goes out in the night in search of Daniel, she ends up being captured by Daniel’s gang. They decide that she will be of great help in their rapidly approaching job in town and refuse to let her go. Daniel, torn between his duty to his job and his love for Margaret, can’t decide on the best course of action. He needs to do his job but also desperately wants to keep Margaret safe. Margaret finally realizes her love for Daniel and openly admits it and openly admits that she accepts God’s unconditional love for her as well. With this unconditional love comes a need to trust, in both God and in Daniel. Trust that they will love and protect her and that with both of them, she is safe in his arms.
I’ve read several books by Colleen Coble and this is my least favorite. The book itself was good and was an easy read, but it was so predictable. I had it figured out very early on in the book. It was a little disappointing that there weren’t more twists to the story. But even aside from that it seemed that Daniel and Margaret were constantly taking time to “embrace” or rest in each others’ arms, even during times of great importance and stress. I realize the reasoning for this in writing the story was to stress the “in his arms” idea, but it seemed to be a bit over-the-top to me. Safe in His Arms isn’t a *bad* book, by any means, but I’ve read better from Coble.
Amanda lives in Missouri with her engineering husband, two sons, and one daughter. In between homeschooling and keeping up with church activities she loves to read Christian Fiction, Women’s Fiction, and any Chick-Lit. She never goes anywhere without a book to read!
Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Thomas Nelson. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.