The Road to Paradise, written by Karen Barnett, is book one in the Vintage National Park series. The story takes place in 1927 at Mount Rainier National Park in Washington state. Margie Lane is the daughter of a senator and is trying to get away from her former fiance, Philip. She has a deep interest in Mount Rainier and is able to secure a position as a naturalist there. She thinks she has gone somewhere Philip will not think to look for her. Margie is put in a ranger’s cabin. The first night she is unable to get a fire going to heat the cabin and she also becomes away that she is sharing the cabin with a rat.
Chief Ranger Ford Brayden is not thrilled with having Margie at the park. He hopes that she will tire of being at the park and go home. But as he works with her, he sees her true interest in the park and asks for her help to catch up on his reports.
Shortly after Margie arrives at the park, a group comes to the park and Margie is asked to help with the activities. She dresses in a rangers uniform and gives a talk. She was not prepared for Philip to be there, nor was she expecting newspaper reporters.
Philip is determined to get Margie back. He has found out some private things about her father and is using that to get her father to go along with his plan. He plans to take over the park and with Margie’s help, turn it into a tourist attraction. If her father does not go along with Philips plan, his career and family will be destroyed.
I thoroughly enjoyed this story. I enjoyed reading about the early years and the park systems at that time. The story is so well written is it easy to imagine Margie finding the rat while being cold in her room. It is easy to feel the tension she has as she crosses the water on the log and then the enjoyment she has when she finds plants she wants to preserve to use as educational tools for others. I enjoyed the suspense written in the story with waiting to see what was going to happen with Philip’s plans. I also enjoyed the humor that is written into the story. I especially enjoyed Margie’s thought that if men were like typewriters, she never master the art of controlling one. But the things that sticks out the most to me is Margie’s feeling about Philip and Ford. Philip is a Christian but he is cold and manipulative. Ford is not a believer but he is very kind and caring.
This is the first book written by Karen Barnett that I have read. She uses her experience as a naturalist, park ranger and outdoor educator to bring this story to life. I look forward to reading the rest of this series. I feel anyone who enjoys reading about our countries early development will really enjoy this story. It has just the right amount of suspense and romance to keep the reader interested.
I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books and I have written an honest review.
Series: Vintage National Park (Book 1)
Publisher: Waterbrook Press
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