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1890s – Washington
Kin Davis itches to leave Wyldhaven and experience life in the big city of Seattle. He only has one concern. Without Parson Clay’s taming influence, will he degenerate into an abusive drunk like his pa was? The question haunts him.
But there’s no escaping his departure. Word has gone out and his tickets are purchased. He only has to make it through the shindig Zoe organized for the townsfolk to offer their farewells. If anybody else was putting it on, he might skip town early, but he wouldn’t hurt Zoe for all the world. His escape would come soon enough.
Yet, as he goes throughout the day, the kindness of each Wyldhaven family touches him deeply. These are good people. Too bad there isn’t a woman in town who holds his interest.
Then a chance encounter with the pretty niece of Wyldhaven’s new bankers, rocks him to his core. And suddenly his trip to Seattle has lost most of its shine.
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1902 – California
Ella Fleming is on the run from her past and the secrets that could tear her family apart. As a member of the Brookstone Wild West Extravaganza, a wild west show comprised of all-female performers, her uncanny talent for trick riding impresses the viewers. Only while performing can she forget the truth about who she really is–the daughter of a murderer.
Phillip DeShazer blames himself for his father’s death and has done his best to bury his guilt in work and drink. Realizing he needs something more, he seeks answers and finds support and kindness from the beautiful Ella Fleming. However, the more she comes to his rescue, the more his guilt grows. He’s fallen in love with her and feels confident that she returns his feelings, but until he can overcome the past and let God guide his future, Phillip knows he’s not worthy of Ella’s love.
Uncertain of what will come their way, Ella and Phillip must learn to trust God even when the road they travel takes them in different directions. Only then can love be a part of their journey.
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1860s – Virginia and Michigan
Cassie Kendrick is on the run. Her abusive father arranged her marriage to a despicable man, but she’s discovered an escape. Disguised as a man, Cassie enlists in the Union army, taking the name Thomas Turner. On the battlefields of the Civil War, keeping her identity a secret is only the beginning of her problems, especially after she meets Gabriel Avery, a handsome young photographer.
Anxious to make his mark on the world and to erase the darkness and guilt lurking from his past, Gabriel works with renowned photographer Matthew Brady to capture images from the front lines of the war. As Gabriel forges friendships with many of the men he encounters, he wonders what the courageous, unpredictable Thomas Turner is hiding.
Battling betrayal, their own personal demons, and a country torn apart by war, can Cassie and Gabriel learn to forgive themselves and trust their futures to the God who births hope and healing in the darkest places?
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1890 – Virginia
After the tragic death of her husband, Aven Norgaard is beckoned to give up her life in Norway to become a housekeeper in the rugged hills of nineteenth-century Appalachia. Upon arrival, she finds herself in the home of her late husband’s cousins—three brothers who make a living by brewing hard cider on their three-hundred-acre farm. Yet even as a stranger in a foreign land, Aven has hope to build a new life in this tight-knit family.
But her unassuming beauty disrupts the bond between the brothers. The youngest two both desire her hand, and Aven is caught in the middle, unsure where—and whether—to offer her affection. While Haakon is bold and passionate, it is Thor who casts the greatest spell upon her. Though Deaf, mute, and dependent on hard drink to cope with his silent pain, Thor possesses a sobering strength.
As autumn ushers in the apple harvest, the rift between Thor and Haakon deepens and Aven faces a choice that risks hearts. Will two brothers’ longing for her quiet spirit tear apart a family? Can she find a tender belonging in this remote, rugged, and unfamiliar world?
A Bride at Last
1885 – Missouri/Kansas
Abandoned by his mail-order bride, Silas Jonesey has fought an uphill battle to recover from a pattern of poor choices. Now his prayers for reconciliation have finally come true and his estranged wife has contacted him with her whereabouts.
Kate Dawson was supposed to be a mail-order bride, but upon realizing she’d been deceived about her intended groom, she’s now settled into life as a schoolteacher. When the mother of a student passes away, Kate assumes she’ll take on care of nine-year-old Anthony–until two men suddenly show up in town, claiming to be the boy’s father.
Silas can see Anthony loves Kate, so he enlists her help in reaching out to the boy and attempting to prove his paternity to the court. When a common interest in Anthony leads to an interest in each other and Silas and Kate begin to think they can overcome their rocky start, neither is prepared for the secrets and past hurts that have yet to come to light. Can Silas, Kate, and Anthony’s wounded souls bind them together or will all that stands between them leave them lonely forever?
An Unlikely Love
1874 – New York
With her focus firmly on spreading her message of temperance, Marissa Bradley is taken by surprise when she meets Grant Winston. Still in mourning for her brother, whose tragic death due to strong drink drives her to speak out on the subject, Marissa cannot think of romance. Yet Grant’s charm draws her in.
Intrigued by the pensive young woman, Grant determines he must learn more about her. But he never expected to find her protesting his family’s vineyard! When he learns her reasons, he’s sympathetic, but Grant can’t walk away from the business that supports his family and provides his mother a home. How can he choose between his and Marissa’s growing love and his family’s very livelihood?
A Cowboy for Christmas
1900 – Wyoming
After an accident leaves her injured, Daisy Richards stays secluded at her family’s Wyoming ranch to avoid the town’s gawking stares. Yet handsome cowboy newcomer Ricky White insists she can do anything she dreams—ride a horse, decorate a Christmas tree…even steal a man’s heart. Once a reckless cad, Ricky is to blame for what happened to Daisy. Now reformed, he wants to make amends by setting things right for his boss’s beautiful daughter in time for the holidays. But Daisy doesn’t know Ricky’s responsible for her predicament. When the truth is revealed, will he lose the greatest gift he’s ever received—her trust?
Dreaming on Daisies
1881 – Oregon
When her father’s debts, brought on by heavy drinking, threaten Leah Carlson’s family ranch, she fights to save it. When handsome banker Steven Harding must decline her loan request, he determines to do what he can to help. Just as he arrives to serve as a much-needed ranch hand, Leah’s family secrets—and the pain of her past—come to a head. They could destroy everything she’s fought for. And they could keep her from ever opening her heart again. This is western historical romance that offers hope and healing to the deepest wounds in a woman’s past.
1926 – Washington
Since booze and prohibition have made criminals out of every man in her world, Laurie Burke resolves to find at least one honorable man to fill her life. Convinced that handsome newcomer Daniel Shepherd is connected with her brother’s rum-running gang, Laurie quickly scratches his name off her list. Daniel has mixed feelings about returning to the dirty mill town of his youth, but grudgingly agrees to manage his grandfather’s drug store until a replacement can be found. The moment he meets Laurie on the windswept bluff overlooking the beach, he knows that if he can earn her love, he might have a reason to stay. But when Laurie pushes him away–for none other than Federal Agent Samuel Brown–Daniel wonders if Laurie really is the upstanding woman he thought her to be. The Strait of Juan de Fuca, just off the beaches of Port Angeles, Washington, was treacherous water for reckless rum-runners—and the agents who tried to catch them. So when she realizes her brother is in danger, romance is the last thing on Laurie’s mind. Yet the people she believes she can trust, may not be so honorable after all.
1868 – Maryland
Home from the Civil War a hopeless cripple and the master of a ruined plantation, James Sheffield must learn to live again. But a dark secret eats away at his conscience, giving him little hope for a bright future. Alcohol is his only escape. When an intriguing woman enters his life, James somehow resolves to make a new start. But, considering James’s history of misfortune, Joy McGuire, a pastor’s daughter, can never be his. She is promised to another—the handsome, young assistant pastor, a man who is far better than James and quick to judge his ugly habits. Will James ever conquer the tyranny of his past? And will Joy listen to the truth of her heart instead of the rumors that threaten to sever their relationship?
Lovelier than Daylight (The Saddler’s Legacy Series)
1875 – Ohio
Susanna is a lady of principles who values family above all. Johann seems to represent all she despises . . . but appearances can be deceiving.
In 1875, Susanna Hanby is headed off to college in Westerville, Ohio, when she discovers her sister Rachel and Rachel’s children have disappeared. Susanna suspects that Rachel’s alcoholic husband knows more than he’s saying and she vows to uncover the truth.
Johann Giere is heir to a successful German-American brewery in Columbus, but longs for a career in journalism in New York City. When Johann signs on as the supplier for a new saloon in Westerville, his and Susanna’s paths cross and sparks fly. A fiery temperance crusader, Susanna despises Johann’s profession, but she cannot deny the attraction.
When Susanna learns that Rachel’s children have been indentured to orphanages in the city, she despairs that her family will be fractured forever. But Johann makes Susanna an offer she can’t refuse—pitting her passion and her principles against one another.
If she can find a way for her head and her heart to be in harmony, a future lovelier than daylight awaits her.
Lovelier than Daylight is a story of love and faith based on the Westerville Whiskey War of 1875, a dramatic real historical event featured in the 2011 documentary Prohibition by Ken Burns.