Thursday, September 22, 2016

The Magnolia Duchess by Beth White - a book review



This book is part of the Gulf Coast Chronicles series and includes many of the characters from the previous books.  It is set during the War of 1812.  Most of the time, when I think of the War of 1812, I think of the northeastern part of the country.  I never gave much thought to what would have been happening in the rest of the country, particularly, in the Gulf Coast.  This book brings that particular time and place alive. The battle scenes are well researched and presented vividly.  The author includes real life characters and events and also invents characters based on real life personalities.


This is from the publisher’s website:

“As the War of 1812 rages across the newly formed United States, another war rages in Fiona Lanier's heart--one that threatens to tear her family apart.

Fiona can scarcely take in the news of her brother's capture and imprisonment by the British Navy. It is almost as unbelievable as the half-drowned British sailor who is washed ashore on the beach of Navy Cove.

Charlie Kincaid claims to have no memory of his life before being discovered by Fiona, but in a world that seems saturated with treachery, she cannot be sure he is telling the truth.
As Charlie's memory returns in agonizing jags and crashes, he and Fiona discover that falling in love may be as inevitable as the tide. But when political allegiances collide, they'll each have to decide where their true loyalty lies.”

The way the author presents the story keeps the reader on their toes.  There are confusing time leaps that happen without any notice or warning but once you realize it, you get used to the writer's style.

This is a story of sacrifice, spies, mystery, loyalty, patriotism love and faith in God.  This isn’t a preachy kind of book but it is evident that the character’s faith is important to the story,


You can read an excerpt HERE.

I really liked this book and give it four stars. I would have given it five were it not for the awkward time jumps.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and Baker
Publishing Group
through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


Faith by Lyn Cote - a book review



This book is the third book of the Quaker Brides series.  I have read the first and liked it.  I’m looking forward to reading the second but not having read it didn’t take away from this one.  It is easily a stand alone book.  The author does a good job of bringing the reader up to date.  It is set in the midst of the Civil War.  It is a very easy book to read.  It’s about love, patriotism, family, slavery and tolerance all in a faith based story.

Here’s what the publisher’s website says:

“The Civil War battlefield is the last place Quakeress Faith Cathwell thought she’d find herself. But with a gift for nursing, Faith seizes this opportunity to join the fight for abolition—and to search for Shiloh, a freeborn childhood friend who was kidnapped and sold south by unscrupulous slave catchers.
Knowing it’s much too dangerous for her to search enemy territory alone, Faith enlists the help of Colonel Devlin Knight, who is indebted to her for saving his cousin’s life. A career soldier, Dev is committed to the preservation of the Union but conflicted about freeing his own slave and confidant, who plans to enlist as soon as Dev gives him manumission papers.
Blazing a trail east with the rest of Grant’s army, Dev and Faith fight their personal battles—and a growing attraction to each other. When beliefs clash and passions flare, they quickly find that the only thing more dangerous than the war surrounding them is the battle within their hearts.”
I really liked this book.  I give it 4 stars mainly because I would have liked a little more depth in the characters.  I wanted to feel more from them.  It is apparent that the author really researched the historical aspects of the story and the nursing profession at that time. It was very interesting to learn about the practices at that time.



Learn more about Lyn Cote here:  http://www.lyncote.com/

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tyndale House Publishers through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Flirtation Walk by Siri Mitchell - a book review



 Flirtation Walk is a historical story based on real life events and places.  It’s set in the pre-civil war days at West Point.  The author obviously has researched the topic thoroughly. 
The publisher describes the story this way:


At West Point, Only True Love Should Lead You to Flirtation Walk
Lucinda Pennyworth, the daughter of a con man, is trying her best to leave her father's sordid past behind her. When he dies unexpectedly, she takes the opportunity to move to West Point to live with her aunt, ready to take on a new life and determined to marry a respectable man, a West Point cadet, to impress her relatives.                                                                              

Seth Westcott, a cadet at the academy, is proud to be at the top of his senior class. But when his mother dies and his sister loses their inheritance to a swindler, Seth wants nothing more than to head west to track down the con man. But the army will only send the cadets at the bottom of the class to the frontier . . . which leaves Seth with some tough choices.
When a woman trying her best to be good meets a man determined to be anything but, can there be hope for love, or will two lonely hearts be condemned to casual flirtation?”


While there are some comical moments in the story, for the most part it is a drama. The romantic aspect of the story almost takes a back seat to the other story lines.  Many of the characters are based on bits and pieces of real people, so they are very believable. The author also gives a great historical account of the times, places, politics and customs.  Her research into the practices and customs particular to West Point is evident and very informative.  She also includes a small section at the back of the book with notes from her research and the reader will benefit by reading it. This story isn’t a difficult read but it’s not a story you can quickly read through and I found myself not wanting to put it down.  It isn’t a particularly ‘religious’ book, even though it is often included in the Christian fiction genre.  I would classify it as more of a “clean” historical novel. I’ve always enjoyed Siri Mitchell’s books and this one is another hit with me!


Learn more about Siri Mitchell HERE  
http://bakerpublishinggroup.com/authors/siri-mitchell/1077
 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House and Baker
Publishing Group through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”






Tuesday, August 23, 2016

A Sweet Misfortune by Maggie Brendan - a book review




I love a story where the main character is a spunky, feisty woman and Maggie Brendan has hit the mark with this one.  Rachel has lost her family but yearns to earn enough money to buy back her family’s ranch.  Her brother had made a deal with his best friend and time is running out.  Employment for young women in the 1860’s was almost non-existent so Rachel did what she felt was the only thing she could do.  She took a job in the local saloon. Reluctantly, her brother’s best friend, rancher John McIntyre, grants his friends request to rescue her and take her to his home.

This is from the publisher’s website:

“Rachel Matthews isn't one to rely on others to take care of her. Homeless and alone, she still wants to make her own way and her own money to buy back the family ranch--even if she's forced into the life of a dance hall girl. Horrified by her circumstances, Rachel's brother, who is away mining for gold, sends a friend to rescue her.
Cattle baron John McIntyre is focused on acquiring as much land as possible in Montana and has little time to deal with a dance hall gal. Rachel isn't sure she can take one more day in John's home--especially once she discovers that he's the one who holds ransom the key to her family's future.



Sparks fly between this spunky, independent heroine and the ruggedly handsome hero as they navigate the snarled terrain of pride, greed, faith, and love in Maggie Brendan's delightful series set in the Old West.”


I really enjoyed this book. It was a fun, faith based story.  The characters are well developed and believable.  The author takes you back in time with her  descriptions of the landscape and living conditions. It always makes a story more enjoyable if you can imagine yourself in the surroundings and this author does a great job of taking you there.  It’s a perfect balance of romance, history, and faith.















I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and Baker
Publishing Group through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Sunday, August 07, 2016

Kissed by a Cowboy by Debra Clopton - a book review



This book was a slight departure from my usual reading material.  I usually gravitate toward faith based historical romance, so this faith based contemporary romance was a refreshing change.  I have read other books by this author and liked them so I wasn’t surprised that I liked this one as well.  Her characters are believable her dialog is easy to follow.  You don’t have to try to figure out what the characters are trying to say. 
This is from the back cover:
Having lived through her parents’ divorces, Cassidy Starr knows when the stakes are not in her favor. Divorced herself and humiliated, her faith on rocky ground Cassidy is done with love. Finished. So over it. …Instead, she’s returned to Wishing Springs Texas and the rundown farm she’s inherited from her great aunt Roxie. She’ll reopen the organic strawberry farm and a Bed & Breakfast– follow in her aunt’s footsteps and remain forever-independent, happy and single…
Rancher Jarrod Monahan’s hands are full running the ranch, helping to look after his ailing grandfather and track rustlers on the loose. He’s pushed all longings for a family of his own right off of his list of priorities. Besides he was in love once and ran scared and lost his shot. But suddenly the regret of his life has moved in next door with a wounded, closed up heart determined to become a spinster…and that’s not happening on his watch.  
Suddenly sparks are flying as Jarod has one thing taking priority and that’s breaking down the walls around Cassidy’s stubborn heart. He’s going to prove that being kissed by this cowboy comes with a lifetime commitment and the matrimonial bliss she’s given up on.
And the good folks of Wishing Springs have decided that falling in love has never been so fun to watch.”
This was a really fun book to read.  While it is definitely faith based, it doesn’t hit you over the head with it, so even readers who don’t necessarily gravitate towards faith based literature will enjoy it.

It’s the 3rd in the A Four Hearts Ranch Romance series.  There are discussion questions at the end and an excerpt of another of her books. I’m definitely going to read the other three books in the series.


I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson and HarperCollins Christian Publishing through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Friday, June 03, 2016

A Worthy Heart by Susan Anne Mason - a book review



This is the second book in the author’s series, Courage To Dream.  The author does a very good job of filling us in on what we need to know to make this a good stand-alone book.

I’ve never read a book by this author before and look forward to reading more from her.

This is a story about a family of Irish immigrants.  Maggie and Gabe Montgomery have left their home and family in Ireland to visit their older brother, who had emigrated a few years before.  Gabe is hoping to learn new fire fighting skills to take back with him, while Maggie has left to escape a persistent former fiancĂ©e.  

Their brrother, Rylan and his wife Colleen, run an orphanage and Maggie, being a teacher back in Ireland, agrees to help out. One day, as she is outside helping with the children, she sees a strange man “lurking” around.  It turns out to be Colleen’s brother, Adam, recently released from prison.  Adam and Colleen’s family is one of the wealthier families in New York, and their father doesn’t want much to do with him.  There are a lot of characters to keep track of in this book and several side stories.  All in all, I enjoyed this book.

This is from the back cover:

“Will Maggie Listen to the Warnings of Those She Trusts Most or the Leadings of Her Heart?
The answer to Maggie Montgomery's dream of seeing America has arrived at just the right time. Not only will she be reunited with her beloved brother Rylan, but she'll finally be able to escape Neill Fitzgerald and his increasingly unwanted attentions. She's intent on never returning to Ireland, hoping to build her future in the land of opportunity and perhaps find the love of her life.
While visiting Irish Meadows, she meets an intriguing man she thinks is a stable hand. Only when her brother demands she stay away from Adam O'Leary does she learn he's Rylan's brother-in-law, recently released from prison. Nonetheless, Maggie can't seem to make her stubborn heart conform to her brother's request.
Adam O'Leary has never felt worthy of his place in the family. Now a free man, Adam's only desire is to earn back his family's trust. Falling in love with the newly arrived Maggie, however, was never in his plans. Despite everyone's efforts to keep them apart, the two develop a bond it seems nothing can break--but they soon discover the past isn't easy to overcome.”


This book has faith, love, conflict and suspense and, since many of my ancestors were Irish immigrants, the historical aspect was especially appealing to me.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House and Baker
Publishing Group through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

You can read an excerpt HERE.

Go HERE to learn more about the author.

Love Everlasting by Tracie Peterson - a book review



Abrianna Cunningham, a young girl raised in a school for young girls to prepare them for marriage, has suddenly found out that she is an heiress.  She also has two men sparring for her affections.  Her neighbor and childhood friend, Wade, is a down to earth, hardworking man of integrity. Priam Welby is a smooth talking, money hungry businessman who uses his business contacts to encourage Abrianna to court him by promising to help her start a facility for the homeless.

Abrianna is a spunky character who  “…has always been given to speaking first and rushing in to take charge of a matter.”  She is a delightful character and brings a sauciness to the story.

This is from the back cover:

“Growing up in a Seattle bridal finishing school never prepared Abrianna Cunningham to become one of the brides, but now Wade Ackerman, who has always been the reliable boy next door, is indicating he wants to be more than friends. And even the people closest to Abrianna believe Wade is the man she should marry. So why is she having such a hard time choosing between Wade Ackerman and Priam Welby?
Watching Welby's relentless pursuit of Abrianna is making Wade's blood boil. Welby can offer her wealth and security, but what about character and integrity? Surely Abrianna can see past Welby's smooth tongue and fine clothes. Can't she?
Caught between the devil and the boy next door, either choice she makes will change Abrianna's life forever.”


I really liked this book.  It was interesting and historically accurate.  The dialog moved along at a pace that kept my interest.  This is the third book in the Brides of Seattle series but is a very stand-alone book.  While it would be helpful to read the first two in the series, it isn’t necessary.

You can read an excerpt HERE

Learn about the author, Tracie Peterson, HERE.  














I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House and Baker
Publishing Group through their book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed above are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
  

 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...