With This Pledge by Tamera Alexander

Publication Date: 08 Jan 2019

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Bethany House Publishers

 

“What is a man supposed to do, Lizzie when an army shows up to occupy his land? His home? His possessions? He fights, that’s what he does!”

                                                                                                   –Towny

Tamera Alexander takes us back to the Carnton Plantation, south of Nashville, to relive the night of November 30, 1864 and the Battle of Franklin along with the ensuing aftermath left by the brutal battle that resulted in a loss of approximately 8500 men. The story is an amazing mingling of historical facts, documents and letters, interspersed with threads of fiction filling in the blanks. The primary characters are based on real people, which add to the depth of the novel.

Let me introduce you to Captain Roland Ward Jones of the Mississippi Sharpshooters and Miss Lizzie Clouston, governess at Carnton and friend of John and Carrie McGavock, owners of Carnton. Their introduction occurs during some of the worst fighting of the battle when Roland is brought in among the wounded to Carnton for surgery. He stands to lose a good portion of one hand and his right leg until Lizzie, serving as the untrained surgical assistant, steps in on his behalf and advocates for him. During the long process of healing, Roland and Lizzie fall in love. However, Roland is a plantation owner with slaves and Lizzie is learning how she really feels about slavery.

Is there a future for these two very different souls? Can they come to terms with what the war has done to them physically, spiritually, and mentally? This story carries strong themes of freedom, freedom of choice and freedom to make one’s own decisions, as well as promises one makes and the price we pay when we honor them.

It is a difficult task to take such a tragic event and turn it into a story that evokes positive emotions and instills life lessons. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this detail rich story sprinkled with inspirational reminders. The characters are genuine and real.   If you enjoy inspirational historical fiction or historical fiction, this book is a must read.

This ARC copy was received from Bethany House Publishers and Netgalley.com. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#WithThisPledge #NetGalley

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A Bound Heart by Laura Frantz

Publication Date: January 1, 201

Publisher: Revell

ARC Copy from Netgalley.com and Revell

“She was like her name—openhearted and brimming with life and spirit.  And beloved.”

Hope, faith, grace, second chances, and the enduring power of love tie this beautifully written novel together as one journeys from the lush green shores of the Isle of Kerrera in Scotland to the hot, humid shores of colonial Virginia and on to the lush, dangerous plantation life of Jamaica. Filled with historical detail of the mid-1700’s, A Bound Heart tackles the social injustices of the time as well as weaving a bit of past history from the Jacobite rebellion into the story.

Magnus MacLeish, laird of Kerrera Castle, is an honorable man living a life grounded in faith. Married to a high strung city woman, his life is complex balancing his time in the city of Edinburgh and his responsibilities as Laird on the Isle. Lark MacDougall, beekeeper and mistress of the stillroom, is a lovely young woman of 25, born and raised on Kerrera. Schooled together, Magnus and Lark have been steadfast friends since early days although the friendship has become more formal over the years as they matured.

Read this captivating tale of a peaceful life devastated by lies and injustices. Can Lark and Magnus overcome the changes brought on by circumstances beyond their control? I loved the story, the history, and the characters. A wonderful novel for readers of historical fiction, inspirational fiction, and romance! Captivating from the very beginning, don’t miss A Bound Heart!

This ARC copy was received from Revell and Netgalley.com. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#ABoundHeart #NetGalley #amreading

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Who I Am With You by Robin Lee Hatcher

Publication Date: 11 Dec 2018

Publisher: Thomas Nelson Publishers

ARC copy from Netgalley.com and Thomas Nelson

“This Bible belonged to her father, Andrew Henning. He said it was Mom’s until the day God told her to give it to someone else in the family, and then that person was to have it until the day God said to pass it along.”

                                                                                  —Jessica Mason’s Mother

The Bible, a gift from her grandmother, is meant to be a comfort to Jessica Mason, a sad, pregnant young widow suffering from the loss of her young daughter and husband, five months earlier. The depth of her sadness is much greater than she lets on to the outside world due to the secrets she has managed to keep locked up tight inside.  Ridley Chesterfield, a handsome young man from Boise, finds himself hiding out in Hope Springs, Idaho after his life turns into a public debacle after his short career working in the world of politics. They find themselves sharing neighborly greetings and a meal now and then as they each work toward finding their way and putting themselves back together emotionally and spiritually.

The book intertwines Jessica and Ridley’s story with that of Andrew Henning, Jessica’s great grandfather and his wife, Helen Grayson.  The dual storyline connects Andrew and Helen’s story from the 1930’s with that of Ridley and Jessica’s from the present through the passing down of the family Bible. The themes of loss, second chances, trust, and love are woven through this touching emotional story.

I thoroughly enjoyed the book with its dual storyline weaving the past and present together. Readers who like contemporary Christian fiction and a bit of romance will enjoy this book!

This ARC copy was received from Thomas Nelson Publishers and Netgalley.com. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#WhoIAmWithYou #NetGalley

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Searching for You by Jody Hedlund

Series: Orphan Train, Book 3

Publication Date: December 2018

Publisher: Bethany House

“We’re human. We break things. It’s what we do with the brokenness that counts.”

                                                                       -Euphemia Duff

In the year 1959, Sophie Neumann, a beautiful, young woman almost 18 years old, finds herself in more trouble than she ever dreamed of in her struggle to live life on her own terms in New York City. Sophie, the youngest of the three Neumann sisters whom we met in the previous two novels in the series, continues living in a difficult situation in large part due to her strong will and hard head. Sophie lies, steals, and finagles her way through life in order to hang on to Olivia and Nicholas, the young orphan children she raised since birth.

Sophie’s lifestyle soon catches up with her causing her to head west with the children on the orphan train, just like her older sisters did in years past. In spite of Sophie’s best efforts, the children are separated from her once they reach Illinois. Sophie, taken in by Euphemia Duff and her family, finds that Reinhold Weiss, a family friend from the past, owns the farm next door.

Read this intriguing story of how city girl, Sophie, finds her way on the frontier farm and how she manages to save her young charges. Don’t miss the captivating end to this series as the Neumann sisters reunite on the Illinois frontier, each with their own unique story to share and a faith made stronger through their trials and triumphs.

This ARC copy was received from Bethany House Publishers and Netgalley.com. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

 

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The Patriot Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse

Woodhouse, Kimberley The Patriot BrideSeries: Daughters of the Mayflower, Book 4

Publication Date: 1 October 2018

Publisher: Barbour Books

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Barbour Books

            “War was upon them. The best they could do was pray and prepare.”

The Daughters of the Mayflower series continues with a new book written by Kimberley Woodhouse. This story continues with another member of the lineage of the Lytton family whom we met in book one of the series.

Philadelphia was undergoing a great deal of patriot activity in the year 1774. Faith Lytton Jackson, 32 years old and widowed, finds herself stretching her courage and bravery to new depths as she works with the local patriot ladies group to quietly aid in undercover activities. Her activities include meeting with her fellow undercover agent, Matthew Weber, a young man putting his life on the line for the cause. In the midst of undercover activities hardly seems the place for romance, but love does not always need an invitation to come calling.

The story is sprinkled with references to well known historical figures and events such as George Washington and Ben Franklin and the Continental Congress.  Keep in mind that it is a historical fiction novel with liberties taken with the characters. The plot twists and weaves its way through the tumultuous times of 1774 and into 1775, ending with an epilogue on July 4, 1776.

I loved the story. The American Revolution is one of my favorite time periods and this book lets one’s imagination run with the story. A truly enjoyable read that kept my attention from start to finish. Great read for lovers of historical fiction!

This ARC copy was received from Barbour Books and Netgalley.com. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#ThePatriotBride #NetGalley

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Someone to Trust by Mary Balogh

Series: A Westcott Novel, #5

Publication Date: 27 Nov 2018

Publisher: Berkley

ARC from Netgalley.com and Berkley

“No one escapes, even those who may appear to others to live charmed lives. But we all have the choice of whether to be defined by the negatives in our lives or to make of our present and future and our very selves what we want them to be.”    
               -Elizabeth

Mary Balogh continues the captivating Wescott family saga in this fifth novel set at Christmas time in the English countryside. After a Christmas holiday that begins with an unexpected wedding, the entire Westcott family, plus a few additions, are assembled at Brambledean Court to celebrate. Alexander Westcott, Earl of Riverdale, and his new wife, Wren, are doing their best to promote solid, loving familial relations among their mixed clan during this holiday.

The story centers around Colin Handrich, Baron Hodges, a pleasant, good looking young man of twenty-six with a title and a nice fortune, and Elizabeth Westcott Overfield,  the widowed Lady Overfield, a slender, fair haired beauty in her mid-thirties. As these two young people move through their holiday slightly at a distance from the others due to their own particular circumstances, they find themselves frequently in each other’s company. A blithe promise is set between the two to dance the first waltz of every ball of the coming Season.

Thus begins a Season filled with adventure and turmoil for Colin and Elizabeth. Read the story of this older woman and younger man to see if they can find a way through the very difficult maze of society and familial chaos that ensues. Rich with romantic detail and filled with the love of family, this book is a delightful read to get you in the Christmas spirit.

This ARC copy was received from Netgalley.com and Berkley. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

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The Liberty Bride by MaryLu Tyndall

Series: Daughters of the Mayflower, Book 6

Publication Date: 15 November 2018

Publisher: Barbour Books

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Barbour Books

 

Pirates, spies, and romance—Oh my!  The War of 1812 finds handsome, charming First Lieutenant Owen Masters working on his own agenda in spite of his seemingly honorable and loyal behavior to his British Royal Naval commanding officer. Feisty and courageous Emeline Baratt, a beautiful young woman in her mid-twenties, is trying to get home to Baltimore when her father’s ship is taken hostage. Their lives cross and clash in a big way as each of them try to do the right thing for the cause of liberty. Throw in a thoroughly unlikeable villain and the story gets even more intriguing.

I thoroughly enjoy the historical time period during which this story is based. MaryLu Tyndall did an excellent job incorporating historical detail regarding the burning of Washington and the planned battle for Ft McHenry and Baltimore.  What a great setting and backdrop for Owen and Emeline to discover more about each other! An excellent read for lovers of historical fiction and inspirational historical fiction!

This ARC copy was received from Barbour Books and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

#TheLibertyBride #NetGalley

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