Tag Archives: historical fiction

Book Review: Yankee in Atlanta

23 Jun

When soldier Caitlin McKae woke up in Atlanta after being wounded in battle, the Georgian doctor who treated her believed Caitlin’s only secret was that she had been fighting for the Confederacy disguised as a man. In order 
to avoid arrest or worse, Caitlin hides her true identity and makes a new life for herself in Atlanta.

Trained as a teacher, she accepts a job as a governess to the daughter of Noah Becker, a German immigrant lawyer, who enlists with the Rebel army. Then in the spring of 1864, Sherman’s troops edge closer to Atlanta. Though starvation rules, and Sherman rages, she will not run again. In a land shattered by strife and suffering, a Union veteran and a Rebel soldier test the limits of loyalty and discover the courage to survive. Will honor dictate that Caitlin and Noah follow the rules, or love demand that they break them?

 

Jocelyn Green is a former journalist who puts her investigative skills to work in writing both nonfiction and historical fiction to inspire faith and courage.

Her books have finaled in the Christy Awards and Inspirational Readers Choice Awards, and have won gold from the Military Writers Society of America and the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association.

Complex and nuanced characters, rich historical detail and twisting plots make her novels immersive experiences. Her fiction has been praised by Historical Novel Society, Romantic Times, Library Journal, historians specializing in her novels’ time periods, as well as popular and acclaimed authors Laura Frantz, Lori Benton, Jody Hedlund, Sarah Sundin, Joanne Bischof, Julie Lessman, and more.

Jocelyn loves Broadway musicals, the color red, Toblerone chocolate bars, Mexican food, and well-done documentaries. She lives in Iowa with her husband, two children, and two cats she should have named Catticus Finch and Purrman Meowville.

Visit her at jocelyngreen.com, and receive a free gift when joining her e-newsletter mailing list at jocelyngreen.com/subscribe.

 

My Impressions:

By The Book chose Yankee in Atlanta by Jocelyn Green as our June selection. A well-researched historical, this novel surprised all the Southern gals in my group. Many of us are Georgia natives, yet we didn’t know some of the history surrounding Sherman’s march to capture Atlanta. Since I am originally from Florida, I really was at a disadvantage before reading this book. FYI, you really can’t base your Civil War knowledge on Gone with The Wind! LOL! Thanks to Green we now are much better educated, especially about the home fronts in both North and South. Great writing, characters, and plot made this one a highly recommended read.

After disguising herself as a man, 23-year old Caitlyn McKae finds herself on the wrong side of the battle lines when she awakens in a Confederate hospital in Atlanta. A northerner, Caitlyn must learn to survive as she awaits either a chance to escape to the North or the arrival of northern troops. She finds refuge in the home of immigrant lawyer, Noah Becker. But war pulls all in the home into its inexorable grip.

There are a lot of things to like about Yankee in Atlanta. The characters are well-developed and easy to relate to. Their struggles, both physical and spiritual, touched my heart. There are two parallel storylines in the book that connect the characters, some who live in Atlanta and others that live in New York City. Historical details of the time period, including the living conditions of both cities during the Civil War give the novel authenticity. I also found myself doing my own bit of research. I love when a book makes me dig deeper into its subject matter. The revival that broke out among the troops from the North and South is explored too. It was heartening to see how God used the worst of times to reach men (and women) for Him. God’s will versus our own is just one spiritual theme. One character, Vivian, expressed that concept so well as she advised “Hope! Always hope, but in God alone. Wait, yes, but on the Lord. Expect Him to do great things and trust His timing rather than demanding that He follows yours.” Those are words I should certainly incorporate daily.

Yankee in Atlanta provided a great deal of discussion — the effects of war on soldiers and civilians, the role of women during the period, the lessons that can be learned even today. If you are looking for a book for your discussion group, this one is a great pick. Part of the 4-volume Heroines Behind The Lines series, it shares some characters with the other books, but is easily read as a standalone.

Highly Recommended.

Great for Book Clubs.

Audience: older teen to adults.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(I purchased this book from Amazon. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

Top 10 Tuesday: Series I Need to Finish!

20 Jun

The folks at The Broke And The Bookish want to know what book series bloggers want to start. Well, before I can start a new series, I need to complete some first. Oh, who am I kidding? Having uncompleted series won’t keep me from starting new ones, but they will weigh heavily on my mind. LOL! To find out what book series other bloggers long to begin, click HERE.

 

Because I have many books on my shelves that regularly whisper (or shout) Read Me!, I thought I would share those series I began in earnest, but have been a slacker in completing. I share these partly to find out from you which one I should be reading and partly to shame myself into reading those long neglected books. So here they are.

Top Book Series I Need to Finish

 

The Darkwater Saga by Patrick Carr

 

Drew Farthering Mystery series by Juliana Deering

 

The Martyr’s Song series by Ted Dekker

 

 

Sophie Trace Trilogy by Kathy Herman

 

 

Secrets of The Shetlands series by Michael Phillips

 

Which series would you finish first?

 

 

 

Top 10 Tuesday — Authors Dad Will Love

13 Jun

Father’s Day is only a few days away. Have you picked out a tie or socks for your favorite dad yet? Don’t do it! Get them something they will really love! The authors I am featuring today have already been dad-approved. My husband and many of the husbands of the gals in my book club have read the books below — and loved them! You won’t have a problem with things that don’t fit or having to return that nose-hair trimmer that doesn’t work. (EWW!) Seriously, these guys know how to write a book that will keep dad turning the pages and thanking you for the great gift you gave him this year. Not convinced, then head over to The Broke And The Bookish for other bloggers’ recommendations based on dads.

 

 

Top Authors For Dad!

 

J. Mark Bertrand

J. Mark Bertrand is the author of the crime novels Back on Murder, Pattern of Wounds, and Nothing to Hide, featuring Houston homicide detective Roland March. The Weekly Standard dubbed him “a major crime-fiction talent.” He has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Houston and lives with his wife Laurie in South Dakota.

Find out more online at http://www.jmarkbertrand.com.

 

 

Mark Mynheir

Mark Mynheir is a former Marine who’s worked in law enforcement over twenty-eight-years. In his career, Mark has served as a patrol officer, an undercover narcotics agent, a S.W.A.T. Team member, and a homicide detective.

Mark has parlayed his police experiences into a successful speaking and writing career. He has written articles for Focus on the Family’s Breakaway magazine, Lookout magazine, and Christian Fictiononline and is also the author of five novels: Rolling Thunder, From the Belly of the Dragon, The Void, The Corruptible, and the Christy nominated The Night Watchman. Mark has also co-written two books with Max Lucado — Pocket Prayers for Dads and Pocket Prayers for Military Life.

He and his family currently live in central Florida. You can visit Mark’s website at http://www.copwriter.com or on his Facebook page.

 

Randy Singer

Randy Singer is a critically acclaimed author and veteran trial attorney. He has penned nine legal thrillers, including his award-winning debut novel Directed Verdict. In addition to his law practice and writing, Randy serves as a teaching pastor for Trinity Church in Virginia Beach, Virginia. He calls it his “Jekyll and Hyde thing — part lawyer, part pastor. He also teaches classes in advocacy and ethics at Regent Law School and serves on the school’s Board of Visitors. He and his wife, Rhonda, live in Virginia Beach. They have two grown children. Visit his Web site at http://www.randysinger.net.

 

Robert Whitlow

Robert Whitlow grew up in north Georgia. He graduated magna cum laude from Furman University with a BA in history in 1976 and received his JD with honors from the University of Georgia School of Law in 1979. A practicing attorney, he is a partner in a Charlotte, NC law firm. He and his wife Kathy have four children and three grandchildren.

Robert began writing in 1996. His novels are set in the South and include both legal suspense and interesting characterization. It is his desire to write stories that reveal some of the ways God interacts with people in realistic scenerios.

You can find Robert Whitlow at his website, robertwhitlow.com.

Book Spotlight + Giveaway! — The Secret Slipper

12 Jun

Click here to purchase your copy.

 

About the Book

The Secret Slipper final

Book title: The Secret Slipper

Author: Amanda Tero

Release date: May 25, 2017

Genre: YA Historical Fiction

Being a cripple is only the beginning of Lia’s troubles. It seems as if Bioti’s goal in life is to make Lia as miserable as possible. If Lia’s purpose is to be a slave, then why did God make her a cripple? How can He make something beautiful out of her deformity?

Raoul never questioned the death of his daughter until someone reports her whereabouts. If Ellia is still alive, how has she survived these ten years with her deformity? When Raoul doesn’t know who to trust, can he trust God to keep Ellia safe when evidence reveals Bioti’s dangerous character?

As time brings more hindrances, will Raoul find Ellia, or will she forever be lost to the father she doesn’t even know is searching for her?

About the Author

Amanda bio picAmanda Tero is a homeschool graduate who desires to provide God-honoring, family-friendly reading material. She has enjoyed writing since before ten years old, but it has only been since 2013 that she began seriously pursuing writing again – starting with some short stories that she wrote for her sisters as a gift. Her mom encouraged her to try selling the stories she published, and since then, she has begun actively writing short stories, novellas, and novels.

If something she has written draws an individual into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ, it is worth it!

 

Guest post from Amanda Tero

Do you ever have plans that come up from almost nowhere? That is kind of how “The Secret Slipper” started. I had written a fun novella, “Befriending the Beast.” It was a stand-alone. Just for fun. My relief project during a longer project. Well, no sooner had “Befriending the Beast” released when a friend asked me, “Hey, have you considered a father/daughter Cinderella story?” That night I stayed up until after midnight, mulling over ideas and coming up with the title. Lord Kiralyn, who appeared in “Befriending the Beast” as Belle’s uncle now had a story—involving a daughter that I didn’t know existed, but whose existence created a whirlwind of adventure, heartache, and excitement. And now that I have two books in the series, my brain is already pulling at ideas for a book three. But that’s another story for another day.

 

Blog Stops

June 6: Desperate Homeschoolers

June 6: Remembrancy

June 6: Pursuing Stacie

June 7: It’s Storytime with Van Daniker

June 8: Fiction Aficionado

June 9: These Splendid Sentences

June 9: Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations

June 10: Blogging With Carol

June 10: Reading Is My SuperPower (Spotlight)

June 11: The Power of Words

June 11: Karen Sue Hadley

June 12: Moments Dipped in Ink

June 12: A Path of Joy

June 13: Bukwurmzzz

June 13: cherylbbookblog (Spotlight)

June 14: D’S QUILTS & BOOKS

June 15: Zerina Blossom’s Books

June 16: Live.Love.Read.

June 17: A Baker’s Perspective

June 18: History, Mystery & Faith

June 19: Henry Happens

June 19: Bookworm Mama (Spotlight)

To celebrate her tour, Amanda is giving away a grand prize of paperback copies of Amanda’s three novellas: Journey to Love, Befriending the Beast, and The Secret Slipper. Click below to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries! https://promosimple.com/ps/b994

Happy Book Birthday! — The Road to Paradise by Karen Barnett

6 Jun

 

Happy, Happy Book Birthday to The Road to Paradise by Karen Barnett! This first novel in the Vintage National Parks series looks to be a great read! Check it out!

 

An ideal sanctuary and a dream come true–that’s what Margaret Lane feels as she takes in God’s gorgeous handiwork in Mount Rainer National Park. It’s 1927 and the National Park Service is in its youth when Margie, an avid naturalist, lands a coveted position alongside the park rangers living and working in the unrivaled splendor of Mount Rainier’s long shadow.
 
But Chief Ranger Ford Brayden is still haunted by his father’s death on the mountain, and the ranger takes his work managing the park and its crowd of visitors seriously. The job of watching over an idealistic senator’s daughter with few practical survival skills seems a waste of resources.
 
When Margie’s former fiancé sets his mind on developing the Paradise Inn and its surroundings into a tourist playground, the plans might put more than the park’s pristine beauty in danger. What will Margie and Ford sacrifice to preserve the splendor and simplicity of the wilderness they both love?
 
Karen Barnett’s vintage national parks novels bring to vivid life President Theodore Roosevelt’s vision for protected lands, when he wrote in Outdoor Pastimes of an American Hunter: “There can be nothing in the world more beautiful than the Yosemite, the groves of the giant sequoias and redwoods, the Canyon of the Colorado, the Canyon of the Yellowstone, the Three Tetons; and our people should see to it that they are preserved for their children and their children’s children forever, with their majestic beauty all unmarred.”

Karen Barnett is the award-winning author of The Golden Gate Chronicles (Out of the Ruins, Beyond the Ashes, and Through the Shadows) and Mistaken. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, two kids, and three mischievous dachshunds. When she’s not writing, Karen enjoys photography, hiking, public speaking, decorating crazy birthday cakes, and dragging her family through dusty history museums. Oregon Christian Writers (OCW) honored her with the Writer of Promise Award in 2013 and a Cascade Award for her debut novel, Mistaken, in 2014. In 2016, she was named Writer of the Year by the prestigious Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference. Karen is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and Oregon Christian Writers (OCW) and has been published in Guideposts and other national magazines.

June Book Club Selections

1 Jun

Summer is in full swing here in the Sunny South! Sometimes it is hard to stay cool, but we do our best. (We are most thankful for the invention of air conditioning!) For cool reading, we hang out by the pool in order to take a dip between chapters or we find relief indoors.

My book clubs are reading a couple of great books this month — Long Way Gone by Charles Martin and Yankee in Atlanta by Jocelyn Green. Have you read them yet.? We’d love to know what you thought.

 

“No matter where you go, no matter whether you succeed or fail, stand or fall, no gone is too far gone. You can always come home.”

At the age of eighteen, musician and songwriter Cooper O’Connor took everything his father held dear and drove 1,200 miles from home to Nashville, his life riding on a six-string guitar and the bold wager that he had talent. But his wager soon proved foolish.

Five years after losing everything, he falls in love with Daley Cross, an angelic voice in need of a song. But just as he realizes his love for Daley, Cooper faces a tragedy that threatens his life as well as his career. With nowhere else to go, he returns home to the remote Colorado mountains, searching for answers about his father and his faith.

When Daley shows up on his street corner twenty years later, he wonders if it’s too late to tell her the truth about his past—and if he is ready to face it himself.

 

When soldier Caitlin McKae woke up in Atlanta after being wounded in battle, the Georgian doctor who treated her believed Caitlin’s only secret was that she had been fighting for the Confederacy disguised as a man. In order 
to avoid arrest or worse, Caitlin hides her true identity and makes a new life for herself in Atlanta.

Trained as a teacher, she accepts a job as a governess to the daughter of Noah Becker, a German immigrant lawyer, who enlists with the Rebel army. Then in the spring of 1864, Sherman’s troops edge closer to Atlanta. Though starvation rules, and Sherman rages, she will not run again. In a land shattered by strife and suffering, a Union veteran and a Rebel soldier test the limits of loyalty and discover the courage to survive. Will honor dictate that Caitlin and Noah follow the rules, or love demand that they break them?

 

What are you reading this month?

Book Review: The Wood’s Edge

26 May

At the wood’s edge cultures collide. Can two families survive the impact?
 
The 1757 New York frontier is home to the Oneida tribe and to British colonists, yet their feet rarely walk the same paths.
 
On the day Fort William Henry falls, Major Reginald Aubrey is beside himself with grief. His son, born that day, has died in the arms of his sleeping wife. When Reginald comes across an Oneida mother with newborn twins, one white, one brown, he makes a choice that will haunt the lives of all involved. He steals the white baby and leaves his own child behind. Reginald’s wife and foundling daughter, Anna, never suspect the truth about the boy they call William, but Reginald is wracked by regret that only intensifies with time, as his secret spreads its devastating ripples.
 
When the long buried truth comes to light, can an unlikely friendship forged at the wood’s edge provide a way forward? For a father tormented by fear of judgment, another by lust for vengeance. For a mother still grieving her lost child. For a brother who feels his twin’s absence, another unaware of his twin’s existence. And for Anna, who loves them both — Two Hawks, the mysterious Oneida boy she meets in secret, and William, her brother. As paths long divided collide, how will God direct the feet of those who follow Him?

Lori Benton was born and raised east of the Appalachian Mountains, surrounded by early American and family history going back to the 1600s. Her novels transport readers to the 18th century, where she brings to life the Colonial and early Federal periods of American history, creating a melting pot of characters drawn from both sides of a turbulent and shifting frontier, brought together in the bonds of God’s transforming grace.

Lori’s debut novel, Burning Sky, earned the 2014 Christy Award for First Novel, Historical, and Book of the Year.

My Impressions:

The Wood’s Edge by Lori Benton sat on my shelf waaay too long! Ever since reading her excellent debut novel, Burning Sky, I knew I had to read more of her books. But alas, the TBR pile reaches to the rafters. So to make sure I would move this worthy book up to the top of the pile, I convinced my book club to make it one of our 2017 selections. And am I ever glad! The Wood’s Edge is another well-crafted and researched historical novel that I would recommend to anyone. The only drawback, if you can call it that, is that there is a sequel, A Flight of Arrows. Now to influence my book club to add it . . . .

The setting of The Wood’s Edge is the New York frontier in the 20 years leading up to the Revolutionary War. A lot happens in that time — the culmination of the French And Indian War, the expansion of the white settlers into previously held Indian lands, and the growing dissent of the colonials with His Majesty’s governance. World changing events. But for two families, one white and one Indian, their worlds are changed by the switching of two babies during the siege of Fort William Henry. As one family grieves and vows vengeance, another is haunted by guilt that cannot be confessed. As the colonies march towards war, the two families are on a collision course that can shatter more than one life.

I love when a novel teaches me. I learned so many things about colonial life, the make-up of early Native American society, and the efforts of missionaries to bring the gospel to the the Six Nations of The Iroquois Confederacy. The Wood’s Edge is so well-written, that I felt I had stepped back in time as I immersed myself in the story. Characters, true to the time period, are complex, real, relatable, and relevant for the modern reader. None are perfect, but have flaws and sins common to us all. The female characters are especially strong and are vital to the story. The theme of undeserved grace runs throughout the narrative and is beautifully portrayed in more than one character. I believe this book will create great conversation at my book club.

I highly recommend The Wood’s Edge to anyone looking for a thoughtful and thought-provoking novel. For fans of early American history, this book is a must read!

Highly Recommended.

Great for book clubs.

Audience: adults.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(I won this book in a giveaway. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)