Category Archives: Inspirational Fiction

Treasured Grace by Tracie Peterson

Series: Heart of the Frontier

Publication Date: February 28, 2017

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Bethany House Publishers

Tracie Peterson narrates an engrossing and heart-wrenching story in the first book of her new Heart of the Frontier series, Treasured Grace. The novel centers around three young women headed west on the Oregon Trail in 1847 whose lives are forever changed by the Whitman Mission massacre. At the mission Grace Martindale meets Alexander Armistead, a hunter and guide, with strong ties to the area. Grace and her two younger sisters, Hope and Mercy, have not been at the mission long when the massacre occurs.

Alex and Grace find that they will need faith to get them through some very difficult situations after the slaughter of so many innocent people. The massacre was a very real historical event around which the story of Alex and Grace evolves. The historical details were a bit sparse in this novel, but the basic plot hooked me and kept me intrigued. This sad, introspective story will leave readers with much to think about. Not a light read, but a very deep touching tale!

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

 

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under American Frontier, Book Reviews, christian fiction, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction

Long Way Gone by Charles Martin

martin-charles-long-way-gonePublication Date: 2016

Thomas Nelson, division of HarperCollins Christian Publishing, Inc.

Copy from The Fiction Guild  and Thomas Nelson

 

Excerpt:  One of the mysteries of music is that two can achieve together what one never could do alone. The effect is exponential. It’s also the only activity on Planet Earth that can transport those who hear it from place A to place B in about two beats. It can shift a mood from laughter to tears to I-can-conquer-the-world to what-if and hope. It’s the original time machine.”

Cooper O’Connor is the epic prodigal son in this amazing novel that loosely retells the parable. Taking many things that did not belong to him, he heads out to Nashville to make it big in the music business. Along the way, life interferes.  

The story unfolds as Cooper meets Daley Cross, a rising young star while he is working at the Ryman Auditorium one night. The two have an immediate connection, both musically and emotionally. However, Cooper runs into an obstacle that is tougher than he ever imagined and willing to do about anything to get what he wants.  

Fast forward twenty years, fate steps in and brings Daley Cross back into Cooper’s life. Much has changed for both of them in the past twenty years and not much turned out the way they imagined.  This story is filled with emotion, pain, and faith unlike any book I have read in a long while.

 I very much enjoyed the haunting emotional story and language. I did not want to put this book down and I certainly did not want it to end. The novel has a great deal of faith, some romance, and mindfulness about gratitude. This is definitely not a light read, but a story that will stay with you long after you turn the last page!

This ARC copy was received from Thomas Nelson and HarperCollins Christian Fiction and The Fiction Guild in exchange for an honest review. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, christian fiction, Contemporary, Inspirational Fiction

A Note Yet Unsung by Tamera Alexander

alexander-tamera-a-note-yet-unsung

A Note Yet Unsung by Tamera Alexander

Publication Date: February 2017

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Bethany House Publishers

 

 

“But you must trust that the Lord has your best at the center of his Heart, and whatever His plans are for your life, for this talent He’s given you, He will bring them to fruition in time.”

                                                            -Adelicia Acklen Cheatham

Once again I feel as though I stepped back in time to the genteel world of Nashville, Tennessee at a time following the Civil War when people were beginning to rebuild their lives. Tamera Alexander writes in such a way that as soon as you read those opening lines you are transported into her character’s world. I hear soft southern drawls and hear the gentle swish of petticoats and skirts stepping into the drawing room.

Rebekah Carrington, a beautiful young woman in her twenties, returns home to Nashville after years of studying music in Vienna, Austria only to find that her home is not a safe haven or even a comfortable place to live. Challenged by a time period when women were not allowed to play an instrument in the orchestra, Rebekah initially chafes at the constrictions placed on her by society as she struggles to find a job and a place to live. Maestro Nathaniel Tate Whitcomb, the handsome young conductor of the Nashville Philharmonic, steps into Rebekah’s life. Although the conductor might be forward thinking himself, his benefactors would never stand for a woman in their orchestra.

Once again Adelicia Cheatham, one of the richest women in America at the time, comes to the aid of a struggling young woman and employs Rebekah as a tutor to her daughter and an assistant to Tate Whitcomb to aid in his music transcription and composition. Tate and Rebekah battle against time, health, and struggling musicians to turn out a symphony worthy of the grand opening of the Nashville Opera House in a few months time.

Rich in historic detail regarding music and the time period, the city of Nashville, and architecture, readers of historical fiction and will truly enjoy this novel. Morals and integrity shine throughout the story which also leaves the reader with a comforting sense of inspiration and faith.

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

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, christian fiction, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction, Romance

The Mark of the King by Jocelyn Green

green-jocelyn-the-mark-of-the-king

Publication Date:  January 3, 2017

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ARC Copy from Netgalley.com and Bethany House Publishers

 

                   “Everything begins and ends with grace.”

The Mark of the King is a beautifully written story of a young Parisian midwife sentenced unfairly for a crime she did not commit. As part of her punishment she is sent to the colony of New Orleans on a convict ship after being forced to marry a male prisoner. The story follows Julianne’s unusual story as she and her husband Simon are delivered to the colony of New Orleans to help populate the struggling settlement.

The tale is filled with Julianne’s struggles in the new world; the loss of her husband, her marriage to a French Captain, and the search for her missing brother. Her struggles and her strength and courage to succeed in this rough country shine throughout this story.

I really enjoyed the historical detail about this time period in America’s history. I had never heard of this very interesting aspect of the settling of Louisiana by the French. The inclusion of real historical characters always adds depth to historical fiction. The story also included an amazing number of lessons learned by our characters and cherished by this reader. These lessons include forgiveness, doing the right thing, and living a life filled with grace. Experience Julianne’s tragedies and triumphs! I loved this book and I hope you will too! Outstanding read for fans of historical fiction or inspirational historical fiction!

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

5/5

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, christian fiction, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction

To Follow Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarino

demarino-rebecca-to-follow-her-heartSeries: The Southold Chronicles, Book 3

Publication Date: July 2016

Publisher: Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group

Purchased Copy

 

Rebecca DeMarino once again takes us to the village of Southold on Long Island in the year 1664. This third and final novel in the series brings back all the characters we came to know so well in the first two novels, Barnabus and Mary Horton and their family; Heather Flower and her husband, Dirk Van Buren; Jeremy Horton and Patience Terry as well as many others. The storyline follows Patience and her long standing love for Jeremy Horton, the ship captain who cannot seem to keep himself on land or at home long enough to get married although he professes a deep love for her.

The politics of the time are calling for a takeover of New Amsterdam on the other end of the island and the generally peaceable village is disrupted when the men head off to a potential battle. This village’s strong women bond together to do what is necessary to carry on while the men are gone.

Ms. DeMarino once again does a terrific job of detailing the history of the time with the political drama and making the entire story very appealing. The book offers drama, death on the high seas, estates up in flames, and thwarted romance!  I would definitely recommend this novel for readers of historical fiction and inspirational historical fiction. This third novel in the series is definitely necessary to tie up all the loose ends and it brings a beautiful close to the Horton’s family story.

 I purchased this book. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Colonial Fiction, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction

The Devoted by Suzanne Woods Fisher

fisher-suzanne-woods

Series: The Bishop’s Family Series

Publication Date: Oct 2016

Publisher: Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group

 

“Watch and wait for God’s timing. You’ll know it when it comes.” 

-Dok

Ruthie Stoltzfus, a lively 17 year old Amish girl, is restless and can’t decide what she really wants to do with her life. Being Amish is a crucial part of her life, but the need for more than the Amish life is driving her in a different direction. To add to her confusion, Patrick Kelly, a quiet, intelligent young man from Canada, arrives for an extended stay at the Inn at Eagle Hill interested in becoming Amish.

Our story revolves around Ruthie, Patrick, and Luke Schrock, a 17 year old Amish boy who has been Ruthie’s on again and off again close friend since grade school. Of course, we also have the people of Stoney Ridge and their everyday lives making things interesting, mysterious deaths at the Inn, unexpected illness, and the odd romance here and there.

The book is an interesting read with undertones of faith, second chances, and finding ourselves where we are instead of always searching elsewhere. Ruthie’s restlessness and Patrick’s quest each lead them to come to the realization that the alternative to their current situation is not always the better one. The story is a pleasant read with a clear path to additional stories in the series. I especially enjoyed the bits of wisdom sprinkled throughout the story.

I received this copy from NetGalley.com and Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group in exchange for a fair review. The opinions and statements above are my own.

Leave a comment

Filed under Amish, Book Reviews, Clean, Contemporary, Inspirational Fiction

The Innkeeper of Ivy Hill by Julie Klassen

klassen-julie-the-innkeeper-of-ivy-hill

Series: Tales from Ivy Hill, Book 1

 Publication Date: Coming December 6, 2016

Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group

ARC Copy from Netgalley.com and Bethany House

 

 

 

The spring of 1820 started out rather mundanely for Jane Fairmont Bell as she continued to hide out in her small lodging next to the Bell, a coaching inn, in Wiltshire, England. Jane’s life had taken some unexpected turns in the past year upon the suspicious and slightly mysterious death of her young husband who had ran the inn along with his mother, the rather imposing Thora Bell. This quiet, routine existence was about to abruptly end.

With the arrival of Thora back at the inn and the mysterious disappearance of funds, Jane must step up and figure out whether or not she is capable of being an innkeeper and businesswoman. The storyline evolves around Jane’s awakening to the reality of maintaining the inn and her employees and her evolving relationship with her mother-in-law, which had previously been rather touchy.  With the assistance of a couple of interesting male acquaintances, Jane begins to find her way forward in a world that was not always kind to women.

Once again, Julie Klassen mixes a variety of interesting characters with unique personalities into the tale. This book is the first in a series, Tales from Ivy Hill. I am looking forward to see which of the characters is highlighted in the next book. They are a slightly eccentric group and some have a hidden side that has not been fully developed in this story.

I enjoyed the book very much. An intriguing Regency read that leaves plenty of questions to be answered and characters to be developed with time!

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

4/5

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction, Regency