Tag Archives: 1800s

REVIEW: With You Always by Jody Hedlund

Elise Neumann and her two younger sisters are in dire straits.  They work as seamstresses and take care of two abandoned toddlers.  With the death of their mother and the unwelcoming care of their uncle, they are left to their own.  Thankfully they end up at the Seventh Street Mission. However, this is a short stay as a financial crisis in NYC means even less jobs.  Elise must step up and take the offer of the Children’s Aid Society to place tradeswomen in the Midwest.
Her male counterpart in the book is well-heeled Thornton Quincy.  Thornton must prove himself to his father by establishing a railroad town in Illinois.  From two different ends of society, Elise and Thornton keep meeting.
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Once again, Jody Hedlund has written a riveting story of adversity with God’s love to cling to in the mess.  This is set to be a book series and I’m already awaiting book 2.
Thanks to Bethany House Publishers for providing me an ARC for a review in my own words.
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REVIEW: Grace and the Preacher by Kim Vogel Sawyer

Twenty-four year old Grace Cristler has waited forever for a husband.  She has her hopes pinned in Reverend Rufus Dille.  Their written correspondence in advance of his move to Fairland, Kansas has made them friends.  She’s hopeful for much more on his arrival to Fairland.

Into the picture comes Theophil Garrison who is on the run from his just-released from prison cousins. He knows they are out for retribution and he needs a safe space.  Sometimes God provides that in unusual forms.

We have a hopeful young woman and a man in hiding.  What does God have in store for them?  Thanks to Blogging for Books and Waterbrook Press for providing me an ARC for a review in my own words.

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REVIEW: Whispers in the Reading Room by Shelley Gray

Librarian Lydia Bancroft and her mother are desperate for Lydia to marry well and soon.  Betrothed to rogue Jason Avondale, Lydia has her future falling into place. However, she finds herself intrigued by a man who regularly visits her library.  The library patron, Sebastian Marks, runs an illegal club where gambling happens and debts are common.  His reputation is that of a guy not-to-be-messed-with and Jason Avondale owes him a fair bit of money.  The paths of all three cross early in the story and things change around for Lydia.

The story is set at the close of the World’s Fair in Chicago.  That fair ended right before the turn of the century (from 1800s to 1900s).  I thought Lydia was a woman ahead of her time.  There’s a lot of back and forth about “stations” and “class” for the various characters in the story.

I enjoyed the story.  It had enough twists and turns to keep me reading.  Thanks to Zondervan for providing me an advance copy to review in my own words.

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REVIEW: Daughter of the Regiment by Stephanie Grace Whitson

Maggie and Libby find themselves on opposite side of the Civil War as it erupts in Littleton, MO.  Missouri itself cannot decide whether to ally with the North or the South and the residents seem to wish the war would just steer clear of their area.  Nonetheless, sides are chosen and a battle ensues.

Maggie is a farm girl who goes after the Federal (Union) Irish Brigade when she finds one of her brothers’ names on an injured list.  She finds that she can be a great asset to the regiment with her skill sets.  Libby’s brother signs up their plantation as a hospital to save it from destruction.  She, too, discovers that she has unique skills to aid in helping with the wounded.

Whitson’s notes at the end of the book were one of my favorite parts.  She explains how she stumbled into the story idea by visiting a small tourist spot in Missouri.  With research and some author’s license for fiction, she was able to give us a picture of how the war may have been in Missouri.

Thanks to FaithWords for providing me an advance copy to review in my own words.

Daughter of the Regiment by Stephanie Grace Whitson

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REVIEW: Spy of Richmond by Jocelyn Green

Jocelyn Green combines historical fact with well-woven fiction to bring a period of time to life.  Sophie and Harrison are Unionists trapped in Richmond during the second half of the Civil War. They risk their lives to spy for the Union.  The details given in the book are amazing.  The description of conditions in Libby Prison were interesting and you can read with assurance that author Green has been doing her homework.  I’m sure there are some inconsistencies, but all the books in this Heroines Behind the Lines series have been fact-filled and deep with story.  For a look into the life of Richmond women during the war, pick up this book and you’ll surely enjoy it.  Follow free woman Bella, her imprisoned husband Abraham, along with Sophie and Harrison.

Thanks to Moody Publishers for providing me an advance copy for a review in my own words.

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REVIEW: Love Unexpected (Beacons of Hope, #1) by Jody Hedlund

Love Unexpected by Jody HedlundEmma, shipwrecked from a pirate raid, lands near the Presque Isle lighthouse in Michigan.  In the small town there are reluctant rescuers but one “needs a wife” lighthouse keeper.  In a marriage of convenience, Emma and Patrick wed.  Although Patrick appreciates the solitude of the lightkeeper’s life, he has to think of his 2-year-old son. And Emma enters the picture.  Emma and her brother Ryan had an unconventional upbringing.  Patrick had a savory past as a fighter/boxer, among other spirited adventures.  And, Patrick’s first wife had died in a fall at the lighthouse.  Though common knowledge, the circumstances surrounding the fall are fodder for gossip in the town.  Emma and Patrick both long for normalcy and a place to belong where they can be true to God.

Thanks very much to Jody Hedlund who provided me an advance copy to read.  I really enjoyed this book!

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REVIEW: Out of the Storm by Jody Hedlund

Isabelle Thornton, the almost 20-year-old daughter of a Michigan lighthouse keeper, has led a geographically sheltered life. Seemingly educated and self-reliant, obedient Isabelle finds her world changing when a young man washes ashore and needs the help of Isabelle and her father to recover. The newcomer, Henry, comes from a privileged background. I think there is more to his story than can come out in the novella. He makes a rather quick change of behavior as he falls in love with Isabelle. I like Isabelle’s character, though I’m waiting to see if Henry still acts on rogue tendencies.

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