Tag Archives: North Carolina

The Book Charmer by Karen Hawkins

Series: Dove Pond, #1Preview (opens in a new tab)

Publication Date: 30 Jul 2019

Publisher: Gallery Books

ARC copy from Netgalley.com and Gallery Books

****

“Life is made up on moments, good and bad. But while you don’t get to pick all the moments, you do get to pick which ones you cling to.”

–Mama G.

 The Book Charmer must be embraced with light-heartedness and a suspension of reality. The story weaves its magic through the pages of everyday life in Dove Pond, N.C. Sarah Dove, the town librarian, has a gift for hearing books when they talk to her. While many of us feel like our books talk to us through themes and messages, Sarah’s books talk to her.

When Grace Wheeler rolls into town with her niece, Daisy, and her beloved Mama G, Sarah feels certain life is about to change for the entire town. Grace, a strong but emotionally wounded young woman, takes on the task of raising her grieving niece and caring for her much-loved foster mother who is fading away with the onset of Alzheimer’s. As if Grace doesn’t have enough on her plate, Travis Parker, a wild looking, motorcycle riding veteran lives right next door and unsettles her life in a multitude of other ways and Sarah gives her books that she doesn’t really want.

As Sarah and Grace navigate the path to friendship, they each learn some valuable lessons. Grace learns that being independent and successful deals with much more than careers and finances. She learns the true value of family, friends, and community in this heartwarming tale. The quirky secondary characters in the book further enrich the novel making it a fun and enticing read for the summer.

I thoroughly enjoyed this delightful story. Readers of Sarah Allen Addison will absolutely love this book! I personally can’t wait for book two of the series to be published.

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

#TheBookCharmer  #NetGalley  #GalleryBooks

Advertisements

1 Comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Contemporary, Romance

It’s Release Day: The King’s Mercy by Lori Benton

Publication Date: June 2019

Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers

ARC copy from Author and Waterbrook

“In every ending,” Alex said, “there’s also a beginning. That’s a thing I’ve learned.”

–Alex MacKinnon

 

Impeccably written and well developed, The King’s Mercy is complex and filled with descriptive detail. I loved the book’s depth and voice and the way the story stays in my head.  This sixth novel from author Lori Benton brings together an unlikely pair; Alex MacKinnon, a bitter young man exiled from his native Scotland and sold into indenture and Joanna Carey, a hard working young woman  dedicated to doing the right things in life while living amidst slavery at her stepfather’s plantation in North Carolina.

The book begins in 1747, a complex and changing time during our nation’s history.  The story offers a vivid portrayal of early life in the Piedmont of North Carolina. The setting brings the reader right into the working world of the plantation alongside the characters and eventually travels to the Native American world of the Cherokee as well.  The primary characters are sincere, strong, and memorable, and in addition, the secondary characters have depth and add much to the story.

The book does not hesitate to tackle some deep issues like child abuse, slavery, the loss of personal freedoms, and the struggle of faith during difficult times.  Explore the themes of grace and mercy woven through this book as Alex and Joanna show resiliency and ingenuity to overcome their difficulties and move on to a different way of life.

I highly recommend this book to readers of historical fiction and inspirational fiction.  The book is truly an amazing read.

I received this book from Waterbrook and the author. The above thoughts and opinions I have expressed are wholly my own.

#TheKingsMercy  #NetGalley

Leave a comment

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

The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn by Lori Benton

The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn

 

Publication Date: April 2014

Publisher: Waterbrook Press

Purchased copy from Amazon.com

 

 

“Have faith that God has you right where you need to be, though all around seems bewildering. Have faith that He sent you help when you needed it, that He will guide you on from this moment too. One step at a time. . .”

-Luther Teague to Tamsen

I would like to say that Lori Benton is an amazing, relatively new author who can grab the reader’s interest in a truly captivating way. The characters and dialogue pulled me right into the story in such a manner that I felt as though I were struggling through the mountains alongside Tamsen and Jesse Bird.

I really enjoyed this inspirational historical fiction novel. I am fascinated by the historical details Ms. Benton incorporates in her story. The book is set in the mountains of the Lost State of Franklin or North Carolina, depending upon whose side you chose in the dispute. In addition to the details regarding the lost state of Franklin, Ms. Benton also includes many particulars about the Cherokee, Shawnee, and Chickamauga Indians of the area.

Tamsen Littlejohn is a lovely young woman raised to be a genteel lady. She makes some startling discoveries about herself as she matures and develops throughout the story. She wants to be more than a pretty face to grace someone’s table. However, Tamsen should have heeded the advice to “be careful what you wish for,” because she gets more than ample opportunity to stretch her skills and abilities along the journey to finding herself.

Jesse Bird, a young man who appears to be at least half Indian and a bit on the wild side, sets out to rescue Tamsen from a difficult situation with her stepfather and an unwanted suitor. Jesse is enamored with Tamsen from the first time he sees her, feeling that she might be the “one.” As the plot progresses, the reader finds out that there is much more to Jesse and his story than what one initially sees.

Tamsen and Jesse’s quest through the mountains of Franklin to safety is full of adventure, suspense, romance, and inspiration. Both Jesse and Tamsen do a great deal of self-discovery and inner soul searching as they progress through the mountains searching for safety at Jesse’s cabin in the mountains. Read and enjoy Tamsen and Jesse’s story! Terrific book for all historical fiction fans!!

 

1 Comment

Filed under American Frontier, Book Reviews, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction, Romance

Ten Miles Past Normal

Ten Miles Past Normal
Frances O’Roark Dowell
Atheneum Books for Young Readers
2011
Library Copy

Janie, a quirky vintage-clad ninth grader struggles to fit in at high school. She hides out in the library at lunch, talks only to her best friend, Sarah, and escapes home to the farm after school each day. After two months of trying to find a place to fit in at the high school, Janie meets Verbena, a new lunch friend in the library, and she meets up with Monster Monroe, a tall, red-headed sixteen- year-old guy who definitely marches to the beat of his own drum. Monster talks Janie and her best friend, Sarah, into joining jam band. Sarah decides jam band is not for her, but Janie begins to find a place to feel accepted. A slight crack begins to form in their steadfast friendship as a result of their growing pains.
“And all of a sudden, I felt larger. Not taller, not heavier, not physically bigger. Larger on the inside. Like suddenly—how do I say this?—I felt like life had possibilities I hadn’t been aware of five seconds before.”

With the assistance of Emma, Sarah’s older sister, Janie and Sarah begin work on a project that broadens the girls’ knowledge of civil rights and works in an excellent lesson on intergenerational relationships. All three girls learn some valuable lessons about the Freedom School, a literacy school where African Americans were taught to read and write in order to vote.
I really enjoyed the fresh, bouncy voice with which Dowell imbues her characters. The freshness is offset by the quirkiness, particularly in Janie and Monster. The story is a fun, light-hearted coming of age story that turns out well for everyone.

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, Realistic Fiction, Young Adult