Tag Archives: christian fiction

The Crooked Path by Irma Joubert

Publication Date: November 7, 2017

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Copy from Netgalley.com and Thomas Nelson

 

“Years ago my mom told me life sometimes leads you along a strange crooked path, but in the end it will always take you where you’re supposed to be, she replied.”

                                                -Lettie Romanelli

Irma Joubert’s latest tale once again draws the reader to the complex life of South Africa during WWII. Readers of her previous novel, Child of the River, will find many of the same characters in this book along with many new ones. The story begins in Italy in 1939 and revolves around Marco Romanelli and the Rozenfeld family and their plight to escape the Nazis.

After four years of hiding the Rozenfelds in isolation in a mountainous cave and nearly starving, Marco and the Rozenfelds are captured by the Nazis and shipped to a camp. The depth of their tragedies during these difficult times is heart breaking. After the war finally ends and Marco returns home to his village, a sick and broken young man, his family sends him to South Africa to stay with his brother and recover from the war.

Marco meets Dr. Lettie Louw, who begins to nurse him back to health. Lettie and Marco marry and begin their family, only to have another of life’s difficulties change their course. Read this detailed account of Marco and Lettie’s life as they encounter complexities one can only imagine.

Once again Joubert gives the reader a good look at religious and ethnic prejudices during this very difficult time in history.  The author delivers a deep, detailed book for readers of historical fiction, particularly those with an interest in WWII and South Africa.

This copy was received from Thomas Nelson and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.

 

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To Wager Her Heart by Tamera Alexander

Publication Date: August 2017

Publisher: Zondervan

ARC Copy from The Fiction Guild and Zondervan

 

“No matter where you’re going, God is already there. He’s already on the train. He’s already waiting for us at the first stop in Cincinnati. There is nowhere we can go—by carriage, wagon, ship, or train—where he is not already there, holding us in the palm of his hand.”

                                                                        –Words of wisdom from Ella’s mom

Tamera Alexander once again transports us back in time to Nashville during the year 1871. A wonderful blend of true historical facts mingled with a fiction storyline runs through this outstanding novel highlighting Alexandra Jamison’s heartfelt battle for independence to follow her heart’s calling as an educator.

Alexandra must first break free of a domineering father and the expectations of society in order to fulfill her dream. Getting hired by the Fisk University, a freedmen’s university, is only the start of a life changing course of events for Alexandra. Her choice to teach at the university leaves her without a home, money, or family. However, during the course of events, Alexandra meets Sylas Rutledge, a mine owner from Colorado trying to bid on a railroad near the Belle Meade Plantation. The story follows Alexandra and Sy as they each pursue their dreams and struggle to find out if they can surmount a past that stands between them and build a future in spite of their differences.

The historical detail encompasses railroads, Fisk University and its Jubilee Singers, and touches once again on Belle Meade Plantation, in addition to the struggles for the general recovery of the South following the Civil War. The characters feel like real people that will touch your heart with their stories, struggles, and efforts.  The themes running through the novel are many; forgiveness, acceptance, family, prejudice, and realization of fulfilling dreams in different ways.

A great read! I highly recommend this novel for anyone with an interest in historical inspirational fiction. An engrossing story that will hold your attention!

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

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Cherished Mercy by Tracie Peterson

Series: Heart of the Frontier, Book 3

Publication Date:  Oct 5, 2017

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Bethany House Publishers

“I’ll definitely be praying. Ain’t never known anything that wasn’t made better by prayer.”

                                                                                                                     -Uncle Edward

 

Cherished Mercy, book three in the Heart of the Frontier series, focuses on Mercy Flanagan, the youngest of the three Flanagan sisters whom we met in the previous two books of the series. The sisters survived the Whitman Massacre and settled with their uncle Edward in Oregon City. The year is now 1855 and Hope and Grace Flanagan are married with children and busy lives. Mercy lives with Grace and Alex and keeps busy helping her older sisters.

This story focuses on Mercy’s quest to help the family friends, Isaac and Eletta, missionaries to the Indians along the Oregon frontier. Mercy goes to the mission with an open mind and heart to do her part. Upon arriving, she comes face to face with Adam Browning, Isaac’s brother. Adam carries a grudge against her before she ever arrives because of his own personal history and his unwillingness to see beyond it. Mercy’s arrival brings a far different person than Adam expected.

The story encompasses so many characters that will touch the reader’s heart. This third story blends family, friends, and shared histories together in a very touching way. Sad in many ways, poignant in others, and inspiring all the way through, Cherished Mercy will engage your attention all the way through!

A thoroughly enjoyable and emotional story and a fitting end to a great series! I think this series was one of Tracie Peterson’s finest. If you haven’t read books one and two, take the time to read those stories as well.

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.

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Many Sparrows by Lori Benton

 Publication Date: August 2017

Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers

ARC copy from Author and Waterbrook Multnomah

 

“A busted wagon, a vanished son, a brush shelter in the wilderness, a stranger to midwife—none of that would have figured into those plans.”

 Complex and rich with historic detail, this story engages the reader from the first page. The year is 1774 and Clare Inglesby, a young and very pregnant mother of one finds herself once again on the move. Her husband, Philip, has single handedly decided that it would be to their benefit to depart rural Virginia for the wilds of the settlement of Kentucky.

As the journey progresses, Clare battles through one conflict after another. Jeremiah Ring, a frontiersman and adopted Shawnee, arrives in Clare’s life at a time when she most needs help. Through the disappearance of her husband and son, Jacob, to surviving life in an Indian village, Clare looks to find someone in whom she can place her trust. As Clare continually struggles to force her will, she will eventually remember how to trust and who to trust. 

The book touched this reader deeply. The emotions are raw.  I wanted to cry and to pray for this woman Clare many time during the book. The characters have a depth of spirit and strength that embodies the true spirit of early Americans and many Native Americans. Read the novel to discover how Clare finds the patience to realize that our time is not always God’s time and how she resolves the issue of her missing son.

I received this book free from Waterbrook Multnomah and the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The above thoughts and opinions I have expressed are wholly my own.

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Beloved Hope by Tracie Peterson

Series: Heart of the Frontier

Publication Date: July 4, 2017

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ARC Copy from NetGalley.com and Bethany House Publishers

 

 

Closely following the first book in the Heart of the Frontier series, book two once again follows sisters, Hope, Grace, and Mercy, after they have settled in Oregon in the year 1850. Two and half years after the trauma of the Whitman Massacre, Hope continues to work at reclaiming her life. Her younger sister, Mercy, made her peace and lives a happy, lively life with her sister Grace and her husband, Alex.

This is an engrossing story of Hope’s struggle to get on with her life as the trial for the native Americans involved in the massacre unfolds. In her quest to give herself peace and to come to terms with the trauma she endured, she encounters Lieutenant Lance Kenner. Their lives become entangled in ways that neither could imagine.

The characters are once again engaging and very human in their behavior and emotions. I really enjoyed the continuing saga of the three sisters. The story continues in such a manner that you almost feel like you are continuing a book you laid down for a while and picked back up. I really enjoyed the story, emotional and tumultuous as it may be at times. Anxiously awaiting book three!

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.

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The Writing Desk by Rachel Hauck

Hauck, Rachel The Writing Desk
Publication Date: July 10, 2017
Publisher: Zondervan Publications

 

 

 

“Her old typewriter perched on its well-worn grooves, waiting for her to type again. But her story had been told.”

And what a story Birdie Shehorn had lived and told! The book weaves the stories of Birdie Shehorn and Tenley Roth together in an intriguing read that covers two distinctly different periods in history. Tenley, a young promising author, lives in present day New York engaged to a pretentious young man from a well to do family, the Van Cliffs. Birdie Shehorn, a struggling young want-to-be author, lives in New York in the year 1902 and becomes engaged to Alfonse Van Cliff, a flirtatious charming young man. The similarities begin.

Both young women find their lives changed as a result of their writing and the men to whom they are engaged. They each take their destiny into their own hands after many difficult trials and choices. Their path toward finding themselves and fulfilling their writing careers is a complex one.

What starts out as a simple story quickly unfolds and becomes so much more! I really enjoyed this book and particularly loved the historical portion of the story. Readers of contemporary and historical fiction will enjoy this book. Read the story and find out how these young women turn their lives around and find happiness each in her own way.

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

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High as the Heavens by Kate Breslin

Publication Date: June 2017

Publisher: Bethany House

ARC copy from Bethany House and Netgalley.com

 

 

What could possibly motivate a beautiful young woman to risk her life spying for a secret underground group that specialized in aiding the Allies and obstructing the enemy during WWI? The reasons were many and complex; survival, guilt, and hope. Evelyn (Eve)  Marche played a dangerous game with the enemy, nursing them by day and serving them food and drinks at night, while gathering their information continuously in order to aid La Dame Blanche in 1917 in Brussels.

After the alleged death of Simon Forrester, her RAF pilot husband of less than a month, Eve sets off for Belgium to join her mother and siblings. Events conspire to add to Eve’s already tumultuous life after arriving in Belgium and she risks everything to aid her people and alleviate her own personal guilt.

This novel is an outstanding fiction story inspired by real people and events from this time period in history. Kate Breslin explores espionage during WWI, women and their varying roles during the war, and survivor’s guilt as well as many other complex topics.

A strong message of faith and the difficulties of holding on to one’s faith during a time of trials weaves a chord throughout the story. A wonderful read for people who enjoy inspirational historical fiction or any reader of historical fiction!

 I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers and Netgalley.com. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

 

 

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