A Love Transformed by Tracie Peterson

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alovetransformedA Love Transformed

1916 – Montana

When Clara Vesper’s husband, Adolph, dies suddenly, Clara is stunned–but not grief-stricken. Her marriage to Adolph had been arranged, their primary interaction revolving around the sapphire jewelry Clara designed and Adolph produced and sold. Widowed and penniless, with two small children, Clara decides to return to her aunt and uncle’s ranch in Montana, the only place she has ever been happy.

Curtis Billingham, injured in a sapphire mine collapse, is recuperating at the ranch of his friends, Paul and Madeline Sersland. But when the Serslands’ niece returns from New York City, Curtis curses both his broken body and his broken past. Clara, the love of his life, has come back to him, but he is no longer worthy of her love.

Clara’s brother-in-law Otto Vesper, Adolph’s business partner, fears that the loss of Clara’s design skills will doom the company’s prospects. Following her to Montana, Otto is prepared to do whatever it takes to get Clara to return with him to New York.

As Clara fights for love and freedom, a dangerous secret in her late husband’s life comes to light, threatening everyone she loves.

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Daughter of the Nile by Jill Eileen Smith

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BC – Israel

Explore with me the exotic world of ancient Egypt and ponder the dilemma Siti faces when she leaves her homeland, her family, and the worship of her many gods, to live in Jerusalem where only Yahweh is worshiped. Can Siti leave her favorite goddess Bastet behind? Will she ever make sense of this land, it’s strange worship of one God, and a husband who is as wise and ever-changing as the wind? What must it have been like for a foreigner to marry the famous Israelite King? Come…imagine with me…

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Mary, Chosen of God by Diana Wallis Taylor

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BC – Israel

Mary is ordinary girl from Nazareth. She helps her mother with household chores, she daydreams about a handsome carpenter’s son named Joseph, and at night she lies on the roof and contemplates at the stars. But one evening, a heavenly visitor comes with unexpected news, and her life is changed forever.

Experience the life of the Messiah from the perspective of his mother, who must place her trust and obedience in Adonai, the Most High, as he fulfills centuries of anticipation in the middle of her daily life. Walk with Mary as she witnesses Yeshua grow, mature, minister, and even crucified, and then raised again, to the kindling of her new faith.

A Rancher of Convenience by Regina Scott

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arancherofconvenienceA Rancher of Convenience

1895 – Texas

Sweet mail-order bride Nancy Bennett can’t believe it when her husband is exposed as a cattle rustler—and killed. And when the banker holding the ranch’s mortgage questions whether she can run the ranch on her own, the pregnant widow has nowhere to turn. Until steady foreman Hank Snowden proposes marriage… 

Racked with grief about his role in Lucas Bennett’s death, Hank resolves to do right by the man’s wife and child. So it’s natural for him to step in as Nancy’s newly minted husband. But the marriage of convenience may become more than a mere obligation…if only Hank and his bride can brave the first steps toward elusive true love.

Texas Cinderella by Winnie Griggs

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1898 – Texas

After a life of drudgery on her family’s farm, Cassie Lynn Vickers relishes her freedom working in town as a paid companion for feisty Mrs. Flanagan. When her father suddenly demands she come home, she has no choice. Unless she can find a husband. If only she could convince handsome town newcomer Riley Walker to marry her… 

Riley is on the run. He’s desperate to keep his niece and nephew safe from his crooked half brother. But a delay in Turnabout, Texas, shows him everything he didn’t know he was missing: home, family—and Cassie Lynn. Can he find a way to become her Prince Charming…and build a real family with the children and Cassie Lynn?

A Mother in the Making by Gabrielle Meyer

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A Mother in the Makingamotherinthemaking

1918 – Minnesota

Practical, steady, levelheaded: all qualities single father Dr. John Orton expects in both a governess and a wife. But his children’s temporary governess Miss Marjorie Maren seems set on finding him an impractical woman to love…despite his plans of marrying solely for convenience. Nothing could be more exasperating to the handsome widower—except his increasing interest in Marjorie. 

Vivacious and fun-loving: that’s the kind of bride the reserved doctor needs. Before Marjorie leaves to pursue her acting dreams, she intends to match him with a suitable wife candidate. Yet growing affection for her four charges and their dashing father has awakened a new hope—that she might be his perfect bride. But can she convince her employer to take a chance on love and claim real happiness before it slips away?

The Nanny’s Little Matchmakers by Danica Favorite

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nannyslittlematchmakersThe Nanny’s Little Matchmakers

1882 – Colorado

Polly MacDonald intends to tame Mitch Taylor’s five mischievous children, even though every other nanny has fled. She needs this job—and Mitch’s brood sorely needs affection. Perhaps their widowed papa does, too. But when the children begin scheming to make her their new mother, Polly must resist. She’s seen too many bad marriages to want one of her own. 

Mitch has come to Leadville, Colorado, to escape a scandal, not find a wife. After the disaster of his first marriage, he’s sure he isn’t husband material. Though Polly’s tender care is working wonders with his children, Mitch knows he should keep his feelings to himself. But can two wary hearts deny the dearest wish of five eager matchmakers?

She Walks in Power by MaryLu Tyndall

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shewalksinpowerShe Walks in Power

Medieval England

Many seek the power of the spear that stabbed Christ. Only one woman has vowed to protect it with her life

Alexia D’Clere didn’t ask to be Protector of the Spear, but after her dying mother gave her the spear tip and made her promise to keep it safe, she had no choice. Orphaned at age 9, she took over managing her parents’ castle with the help of a trusted steward. Yet, when a plot to murder her was revealed, a friar whisked her away to live hidden in the forest. There, she learned to shoot expertly with bow and arrow and hone her skills to see into the spirit realm.

Now, at 18, she continues to keep the spear protected, provide meat for the starving village, while secretly caring for her ill sister who still lives in the castle. With Alexia’s powers of spiritual discernment and her skill as an archer, she is no match for those who come for the spear. That is until she meets Ronar LePeine, one of the King’s Elite Guard.

Ronar desires nothing more than to do his duty for God and King and pay penance for his past sins. Yet a forest sprite with red, flaming hair blocks his every move, all the while enchanting him like no other. Something evil lurks at Castle Luxley, and both Ronar and Alexia are soon thrust into the middle of a spiritual battle which will not only test their very beliefs, but put them both in mortal danger.

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My Sister’s Prayer by Mindy Starns Clark and Leslie Gould

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1705 – Virginia and Present Day

Virginia, 1705

Celeste Talbot is usually such a sensible young woman—until she falls for an English soldier reassigned to the Colonies. Leaving her Huguenot family behind, she sets sail for America, only to realize that her younger sister Berta has been kidnapped and forced on board the very same ship. Whom can Celeste trust? The dashing soldier? Or the vigilant carpenter who remains by their side in the perilous New World?

Virginia, present day

Madeline “Maddee” Talbot has her hands full when she agrees to take in her younger sister Nicole following a serious car accident. The young women grew apart when Nicole fell into drug addiction, and Maddee prays this will be the start of a better life for her sister. But as they investigate a trauma from their childhood, Maddee must keep a diligent eye on Nicole—and the shadowy figure watching them from afar.

From the Christy Award-winning team of Mindy Starns Clark and Leslie Gould, My Sister’s Prayer tells an epic tale of two women compelled to protect their sisters, confront their fears, and navigate the muddy waters of betrayal to find true love.

Mountain Christmas Brides by Various Authors

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From a Wyoming ranch in 1880, to a logging camp in Washington Territory in the late 1800s, to Denver, Colorado, in 1913, meet nine couples who find that Christmas is the perfect time for climbing to the heights of romance. Watch as their faith and courage propel them through challenges that come with mountain winters to cozy fireside celebrations that lead to lasting proclamations of love. Penned by an exclusive selection of Christian fiction authors—including Susan Page Davis, Vickie McDonough, and Carrie Turansky—this collection of nine romances is one to treasure.

A Lesson in Love and Murder by Rachel McMillan

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1912 – Canada, Illinois

The legacy of literary icon Sherlock Holmes is alive and well in 1912 Canada, where best friends Merinda Herringford and Jem Watts continue to develop their skills as consulting detectives.

The city of Toronto has been thrown into upheaval by the arrival of radical anarchist Emma Goldman. Amid this political chaos, Benny Citrone of the Royal North-West Mounted Police arrives at Merinda and Jem’s flat, requesting assistance in locating his runaway cousin—a man with a deadly talent.

While Merinda eagerly accepts the case, she finds herself constantly butting heads—and hearts—with Benny. Meanwhile, Jem has her hands full with a husband who is determined to keep her out of harm’s way.

As Merinda and Jem close in on the danger they’ve tracked from Toronto to Chicago, they uncover a sinister plot to assassinate presidential candidate Theodore Roosevelt. Will they be able to save the day and resolve the troubles threatening their future happiness before it’s too late?

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Beneath the Blackberry Moon by April Gardner

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beneaththeblackberrymoonBeneath the Blackberry Moon Set

1813 – Mississippi/Alabama/Florida

Adela McGirth has never feared her neighbors, the Creek Indians, but a suspicious encounter with a steely eyed warrior shakes her confidence. Her dread soon becomes reality, but no fort is strong enough to hold off a party of warriors who fear nothing but the loss of their ancient ways.

Big Warrior Totka Hadjo, a Red Stick bound by honor to preserve his heritage, enters his toughest battles yet—the fight for love, the invasion of fear, and the inescapable ashes of each. The war was simpler before his enemy became a beautiful face with a gentle warrior’s spirit he cannot resist.

War, captivity, hunger that will not be denied. And a blackberry moon with enough pull to endure the test of time.

Rosa, Sola by Carmela Martino

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1960s – Illinois

Rosa Bernardi, an only child living with her Italian immigrant parents in 1960s Chicago, often feels alone, or SOLA, as her parents would say. But after she holds her best friend AnnaMaria’s baby brother for the first time, Rosa is sure that if she prays hard enough, God will send her a brother of her own. When Rosa’s prayers for a sibling are answered, she is overjoyed—until tragedy strikes. Rosa is left feeling more SOLA than ever, and wondering if her broken family will ever be whole again.

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Collision of The Heart by Laurie Alice Eakes

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1856 – Michigan

Mia Roper isn’t a typical nineteenth-century woman. Refusing to pass up the hard-won opportunity to prove herself as a journalist, she left Hillsdale, Michigan, hoping in vain that Ayden Goswell would follow her to Boston.

When the train bringing her back for her first major story crashes in a snowstorm outside town, Mia is stranded. Not even the survival of a fellow passenger, a toddler, can ease her heart’s sudden ache at seeing Ayden, now a history professor at the local college, courting someone else.

Ayden’s never gotten over the fact that the most fascinating woman he ever met chose her career over marriage…and he let her go. But marrying the department director’s daughter could at least guarantee him a permanent job. It’s a satisfactory arrangement, yet his kind, pretty bride-to-be has one simple flaw: she’s not Mia.

As soon as the trains are running, Mia will be leaving again, unless she and Ayden can reconcile ambition and love—and take a leap of faith together.

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Lucifer’s Harvest by Mel Starr

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1370 – England/France

King Charles of France has announced that he is confiscating Aquitaine, and Prince Edward has sent for knights and men at arms from England to assist him in opposing the French king. Lord Gilbert Talbot is required to provide five knights, twelve squires, and twenty archers and men at arms, and wishes his surgeon “ Hugh de Singleton“ to travel with the party, while Hugh’s wife Kate will oversee the castle. Among the party will be Sir Simon Trillowe, Hugh’s old nemesis and Kate’s former suitor, who had once set fire to Hugh’s house. After a brawl on the streets of Oxford Sir Simon had nearly lost an ear; Hugh had sewn it back on but it had healed crooked, and Simon blamed Hugh for the disfigurement. Finding himself in the same party, Hugh resolves not to turn his back on the knight“ but it is Sir Simon who should not have turned his back.

The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof

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1890 – Virginia

Raised amid the fame and mystique of the Big Top, Charlie Lionheart holds the audience in the palm of his hand. But while his act captivates thousands, it’s away from the spotlight where his true heart lies. Here he humbly cares for his pride of lions as if they were his brothers, a skill of bravery and strength that has prepared him for his most challenging feat yet—freeing an orphaned infant from the dark bondage of a sideshow. A trade so costly, it requires his life in exchange for hers, leaving him tarnished by the price of that choice.

As the circus tents are raised on the outskirts of Roanoke, nurse Ella Beckley arrives to tend to this Gypsy girl. All under the watchful eye of a guardian who not only bears a striking resemblance to the child, but who protects the baby with a love that wraps around Ella’s own tragic past, awakening a hope that goodness may yet reign. When their forbidden friendship deepens, Charlie dares to ask for her heart, bringing her behind the curtain of his secret world to reveal the sacrifice that gave hope to one little girl—boldly showing Ella that while her tattered faith is deeply scarred, the only marks that need be permanent are his own.

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Two Ways Home by Sondra Kraak

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1892 – Washington

Mary Smith was never one to back down from a challenge. Her father’s health may be failing, but their dairy farm was her mother’s dream, and Mary will do whatever it takes to keep her father from selling it—even if it means sneaking off to the next town to earn money by playing the piano in a questionable establishment. No one seems to understand why home is so important to her, least of all her childhood nemesis who’s just wandered back into town.

When injured Texas Ranger Luke Thomas is forced to return to Pine Creek, Washington, he’s hailed as a hero and thrust into the town’s first race for sheriff. But no one knows the secret he carried to Texas, nor the secret he’s brought home. Setting his perfect aim on returning south, he refuses to get tied down by the town’s admiration, his brother’s disapproval, or the spirited, hardworking dairy girl who’s less annoying than he remembers.

But strange things are happening at the Smith dairy and in Pine Creek, and Luke’s instincts tell him Mary is in far more trouble than she realizes. One thing is certain: “home” is about to get more complicated for them both.

Author Interview and Giveaway – Sarah Loudin Thomas – A Tapestry of Secrets

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I’m delighted to have a dual timeline novel on the website this month!

THOMAS_TapestryofSecrets_fr&sp.indd , , , , , , , , ,

A Tapestry of Secrets

For decades, Perla Phillips has hidden the truth of a decision that still fills her with guilt. But now, seeing her granddaughter, Ella, struggle in a similar way, she’s prepared to finally open the past to her family, no matter the consequences. But when the opportunity is snatched from her in a most unexpected manner, will she have waited too long?

Spanning generations, this moving family drama weaves together the interlocking stories of two women as they navigate relationships, family, faith, and the choices that will shape their lives. Heartwarming and nostalgic, the story explores the courage to share the wounds of the past and celebrates the legacy a family passes from one generation to the next. 

 

Sarah’s Book

chair 5

Others in this Series:

The first is FREE!

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Questions about Sarah’s Story

What inspired your story?

Although I technically write historical fiction, I feel like I cheat a little bit! I don’t do much of the in-depth research so many other historical writers dig into. My primary source for research is just talking to people. And mostly family members at that. When I have a technical question, I often call my dad and ask him—e.g. what did the stove Grandma cooked on when you were ten look like? All through the Appalachian Blessings series the characters, the scenes, and the daily activities are drawn from listening to my family’s stories since I was old enough to sit up. Dad was the main storyteller, but I also listened to my grandmother, Aunt Bess, and the other “old folks” who gathered to talk at every opportunity. Those wonderful, wonderful people of West Virginia are my inspiration and in a way, I write to try and keep them alive a little bit longer.

What character in your book turned out to be your favorite?

I can’t seem to keep from introducing characters who are supposed to be bad guys who turn out to be closet heroes. They’re my favorites. I started it with Frank Post in Miracle in a Dry Season—the town drunk with a shady past who turned out to have all kinds of valuable life experiences to share. In A Tapestry of Secrets it’s Keith, the out-of-town developer who wants to turn the historic church property into a hunting preserve. I meant for him to be a cold-blooded outsider set on destroying Laurel Mountain Church, but turns out he’s had some hard times of his own to overcome. He’s just a divorced man trying to find meaning and maintain a relationship with his daughter. My favorites are always the hard cases who eventually see the light.  

Which scene (give us the chapter) is your favorite, the one you never tired of working with?

My favorite parts of the story to write were the flashbacks to 1948 and the summer when Perla became pregnant out of wedlock. Readers who have followed along since Miracle in a Dry Season have known about the pregnancy, but I’d never even hinted at how a “good girl” like Perla came to have a child before she had a husband. When the father of the child is introduced, he goes by a nickname. For me, the pivotal point wasn’t so much the night the pair spent together as it was the moment when he revealed his real name in Chapter 20. He and Perla know they don’t have a future together at that point and the way he gives her the gift of his name is really poignant for me. It’s probably silly, but I still can’t read that bit without tears coming to my eyes.

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Questions about Sarah’s Reading

Which book got you hooked on reading Christian Historicals?

Francine Rivers’ Mark of the Lion series hooked me on Christian fiction period! That woman can write! Once I was hooked, I began to discover other historical writers I love like Nancy Moser and Julie Klassen. I adore Nancy’s books about real women like Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Martha Washington, while Julie is as close as I’m likely to get to a “new” Jane Austen novel. I’m also really looking forward to Luther & Katharina by Jody Hedlund. I have deep admiration for writers who bring real historical characters to life through meticulous research and fabulous prose!

Which was the last Christian Historical Novel you read, and what was your favorite thing about it?

I recently finished A Haven on Orchard Lane by Lawana Blackwell. I’ve loved her books since The Widow of Larkspur Inn and I’m so glad she’s writing again after a few years away from publishing. There were lines and scenes that literally made me sigh with contentment. While conflict and challenges find their way into the story, overall it’s primarily a tale of good triumphing over evil. Just as it should. Peace. Order. A satisfactory ending. Just what I long for after too much of the real world!

Sarah is giving away a copy of her book (Paperback – US only) and I’m giving away winner’s choice of ebook of any of the books mentioned above. Enter the Rafflecopter below!

DON’T FORGET TO GET HER FREE PREQUEL NOVELLA FOR THIS SERIES!

**If you don’t want to enter Rafflecopter, tell me in a comment below: “I’m not entering the rafflecopter, but please throw me in the hat” so I can manually put you in there for a chance.**

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Guide Me Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer

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guidemehomeGuide Me Home

1907 – Kentucky

Working in the massive cave might allow 
Rebekah the chance to bring joy back to her family.
But will it claim more than it gives? 
 
After tragedy leaves its mark on Rebekah Hardin’s family, she plans to help her parents and six siblings honor her beloved brother’s memory and alleviate their poverty by working as a guide in the dangerous cave system. Kentucky’s renowned Mammoth Cave presents profitable opportunities in for hardworking, capable men. But Rebekah is determined and if it means presenting herself as a himself, then she’s up to the job.  
    
Under the wing of experienced guide Tolly Sanford, “Reb” begins to learn the complexities of the cave and the two are joined by an aspiring young cartographer, Devlin Bale. 
     
The university student has traveled to the hill country to map tunnels—not to fall for a girl in disguise. Can the God who designed miles of underground astonishment shape Devlin’s ambitious plans and free Reb from the weight from the past?    

A Family for the Rancher by Louise M Gouge

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afamilyfortherancherA Family for the Rancher

1895 – Texas

Rancher Edmund McKay likes his life simple and quiet—everything feisty neighbor Lula May Barlow is not! But with a cattle rustler on the loose, he’s duty-bound to protect the widowed mother, even without her approval. Yet he never expected to enjoy her company. And he certainly never thought her crowded, bustling house would be the first place he’d ever feel at home… 

After a harsh childhood, Lula May knows how to stand on her own two feet. She doesn’t need Edmund’s help—but she’s starting to want it, all the same. So are her children, who clearly have matchmaking in mind. And when a threat from the past resurfaces, she realizes all that’s at stake…including her chance for a lifetime of love.

A Hasty Betrothal by Jessica Nelson

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hastybetrothalA Hasty Betrothal

Regency England

Though Lady Elizabeth Wayland would rather spend her days with her beloved books than an uncaring spouse, scandal forces her to find a match posthaste. To escape the scoundrel who almost ruined her, Elizabeth accepts an unconventional proposal from a childhood friend. But when she finds herself falling for her husband-to-be, will she be able to convince him to return her love? 

Widowed cotton mill owner Miles Hawthorne vowed to never marry again—until Elizabeth’s reputation is on the line. Their betrothal begins as a simple favor. As he spends more time with his fiancée, though, Miles finds that there’s more to her than he ever saw before. And Elizabeth just might be the only woman who can slip into his heart.

Make-Believe Beau by Keli Gwyn

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makebelievebeauMake-Believe Beau

1874 – California

As a draftswoman in a man’s world, Jessica Sinclair causes a stir as her new male colleagues vie for her attention. And the company manager has an ultimatum: fake a courtship with her boss, Flynt Kavanaugh…or lose her job. But pretending to be smitten with the handsome engineer unleashes a real, complicated attraction—and could reveal the past she hoped to keep hidden. 

Jessica is certainly the best person for the job. But as their make-believe romance escalates, Flynt knows that’s not the only reason he wants her on his team. However, with his past shrouded by a shameful secret, Flynt has always focused his ambitions on building a career, not a family. Now he has designs on Jessica’s heart, but can they trust each other with the truth?

Wolf Creek Wife by Penny Richards

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wolfcreekwifeWolf Creek Wife

1887 – Arkansas

After a storm strands her overnight in Will Slade’s cabin, Blythe Granville’s reputation is in shambles. The townspeople doubt that she was innocently nursing him back to health after saving his life. Now Blythe must accept Will’s proposal: a marriage in name only to save her good name. But the former socialite is determined not to fall for her new husband…even if she’s drawn to the gruff stranger who’s vowed to stand by her, in sickness and in health. 

Will never wanted to remarry after his ex-wife betrayed him. But now he finds himself hitched to a city girl who has no idea how to keep a house…but is somehow chiseling her way into his heart. As Blythe melts Will’s crusty facade, though, they’re discovering that this most unexpected union might just lead to true love.

The California Gold Rush Romance Collection by Various Authors

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The California Gold Rush Romance Collectioncaliforniagoldrushcollection

Rush to California after the 1848 gold discovery alongside thousands of hopeful men and women. Meet news reporters, English gentry, miners, morticians, marriage brokers, bankers, fugitives, preachers, imposters, trail guides, map makers, cooks, missionaries, town builders, soiled doves, and more people who take advantage of the opportunities to make their fortunes in places where the population swelled overnight. But can faith and romance transform lives where gold is king?

With All My Heart Romance Collection by Various Authors

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BHP_With All My Heart 5.inddWith All My Heart Romance Collection

Previously released ebook only novellas now in paperback

Readers will take a journey across America and through time in this collection of five novellas from some of Christian fiction’s top writers. Originally released as ebooks, the novellas–moving, faith-filled and deeply romantic–now find print for the first time. The collection includes:

Karen Witemeyer’s “Love on the Mend,” set in post-Civil War Texas, tells the story of two competing doctors. Jody Hedlund’s “Out of the Storm” finds a desperate woman shipwrecked near a Michigan lighthouse. Melissa Jagears’ “Love by the Letter” is an unexpected mail-order-bride prairie story. Sarah Loudin Thomas’ “Appalachian Serenade” finds love in a small-town West Virginia store. Finally, Jen Turano’s “Gentleman of Her Dreams” tackles the New York social season.

The Artisan’s Wife by Judith Miller

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theartisanswifeThe Artisan’s Wife

1876 – West Virginia

Ainslee McKay’s world is shaken when she discovers her twin sister has not only eloped with a man she barely knows but now Ainslee must fulfill their obligation at a tile works in Weston, West Virginia. Ainslee must learn the ropes and, if she can keep the tile works profitable, her brother will help her sell the business.

When Levi Judson arrives and shows Ainslee his designs for new tiles, she’s impressed by his skill and passion for the business. But he’s hiding his true reason for coming to Weston. And Ainslee knows he’d be crushed to learn his plans for a long career at McKay Tile Works are in vain since she intends to sell. Can the growing feelings between them survive if the truth comes to light–or is a future together as untenable as the future of the tile works itself?

 

A Tapestry of Secrets by Sarah Loudin Thomas

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1948 & 2008 – West Virginia

For decades, Perla Phillips has hidden the truth of a decision that still fills her with guilt. But now, seeing her granddaughter, Ella, struggle in a similar way, she’s prepared to finally open the past to her family, no matter the consequences. But when the opportunity is snatched from her in a most unexpected manner, will she have waited too long?

Spanning generations, this moving family drama weaves together the interlocking stories of two women as they navigate relationships, family, faith, and the choices that will shape their lives. Heartwarming and nostalgic, the story explores the courage to share the wounds of the past and celebrates the legacy a family passes from one generation to the next. 

A Heart Most Certain by Melissa Jagears

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HeartMostCertain coverA Heart Most Certain

1905 – Kansas

Lydia King knows what it’s like to be in need, so when she joins the Teaville Moral Society, she genuinely hopes to help the town’s poor. But with her father’s debts increasing by the day and her mother growing sicker by the week, she wonders how long it will be until she ends up in the poor house herself. Her best chance at a financially secure future is to impress the politician courting her, and it certainly doesn’t hurt that the moral society’s president is her suitor’s mother. Her first task as a moral society member–to obtain a donation from Nicholas Lowe, the wealthiest man in town–should be easy . . . except he flat-out refuses.

Despite appearances, Nicholas wants to help others but prefers to do it his own way, keeping his charity private. When Lydia proves persistent, they agree to a bargain, though Nicholas has a few surprises up his sleeve. Neither foresee the harrowing complications that will arise from working together. When town secrets are brought to light, this unlikely pair must decide where their beliefs–and hearts–truly align.

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Where Hope Prevails by Janette and Laurel Oke

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Where Hope Prevails wherehopeprevails

Canada

When Beth Thatcher returns to Coal Valley, she has much to be excited about. She anticipates Jarrick’s proposal of marriage and perhaps a spring wedding. The mine is expanding, and there are more schoolchildren than ever.

But the town’s rapid growth brings many challenges. A second teacher is assigned, and Beth finds herself going head-to-head with a very different philosophy of education–one that dismisses religion and rejects God. Fearful for the children who sit under the influence of Robert Harris Hughes, Beth struggles to know how to respond.

At the same time, Beth wonders if Jarrick is considering a position at her father’s company simply for her sake. Should she admit her feelings on the matter? Or keep silent and allow Jarrick to make up his own mind?

Fifth Column by Mike Hollow

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fifthcolumnFifth Column

1940s – England

Detective Inspector Jago investigates, uncovering deception and betrayal

At first glance, the young woman found in the early hours of the morning where bombs have landed is just another casualty of the previous night’s air raid. But when the post-mortem shows signs of strangulation, Detective Inspector Jago is called on to investigate.

The dead woman is smartly dressed but carries no identification. However, a local engineering company reports a staff member has failed to appear at work that morning and the body is quickly identified as that of Miss Mary Watkins.

DI Jago’s initial interviews yield little fruit; no one can think of a reason why Mary would be murdered. But as the investigation continues DI Jago begins to uncover a trail of deception and betrayal.

A Changed Agent by Tracey Lyons

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A Changed Agentachangedagent

1890 – New York

When schoolteacher Elsie Mitchell meets rugged William Benton on a train platform in Albany, it appears they have nothing in common. He isn’t the sort of fellow a proper young woman of the 1890s would ever speak to, much less become involved with. But when she arrives at her small town in the Adirondack Mountains, Elsie is offered a job as caregiver for this mysterious out-of-towner’s niece and nephew, who’ve been tragically orphaned. Heartbroken for them, she accepts.

Unknown to her, William is an undercover Pinkerton agent posing as a lumber-company foreman. He’s never wanted family—his work is too dangerous. Yet as Elsie transforms his house into a home and he spends time with the children, he feels drawn to family life—and to Elsie.

As a good Christian, Elsie is troubled by William’s secrets…though she does find him intriguing. And when a sinister figure from her past arrives, Elsie and William will have to trust in faith and newfound love to protect their unlikely family from danger.

To Follow Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarino

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tofollowherheartTo Follow Her Heart

1664 – (New York)

It is 1664 and Patience Terry is devastated to learn that Captain Jeremy Horton’s ship has been shipwrecked off the coast of Barbados, with no survivors. She had hoped that Jeremy would someday give up the sea and settle down with her in Southold, Long Island.

Unaware his memorial service is being planned, Jeremy is rescued and aboard a British Naval Gunship with secret orders to attack New Amsterdam and claim it for the British Crown. When he makes his surprise return to Southold–and to an overjoyed Patience–it’s not the happily-ever-after his beloved had hoped for.

Wren by Julane Hiebert

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wrenWren

1878 – Kansas

Wren Wenghold is not one to waste time or seek advice. Fearful that her uncle will insist on finding her a mail-order husband, and even more afraid she will end up with the likes of the crude cowboy, Sam Mason, she decides to take matters into her own hands. Her advertisement for a husband receives only one reply, but–determined to arrive in Kansas with a man–she accepts it and hopes for the best. When the consequences of her impulsive behavior begin to overtake her, will she be able to undo the damage?

Castles in the Clouds by Myra Johnson

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castlesinthecloudsCastles in the Clouds

1932 – Arkansas

The first book in the Flowers of Eden series introduced readers to Bryony Linwood, an orphan trying desperately to provide for her sisters in the shadow of the Great Depression. In Castles in the Clouds, we meet one of those sisters—Larkspur Linwood, a young woman who has a passion for teaching but yearns for something more than life as a small-town Arkansas schoolmarm.

Young and impressionable, Lark mistakes a college professor’s interest for romantic love. When he offers her the chance to join his efforts to start a school in Kenya, she pictures herself bringing the light of knowledge to hundreds of African children eager to learn. But the menial tasks she’s assigned at the school aren’t so different from life on the farm where she grew up. Miserable and deflated, with her fragile heart broken, she gives up and returns home.

Enter Professor Anson Schafer, whom she met briefly in Kenya. Partially blinded from an eye infection he contracted there, Professor Schafer cannot return to Africa. He has come to Lark’s school to recruit teachers like her for a more modest venture—the founding of schools and relief efforts here in the U.S. for those struggling through the Depression.

Still stinging from her experience in Kenya, Lark is reluctant to risk leaving her familiar surroundings, but she knows how great the need has become, and—although this isn’t the exciting life she’d envisioned—she finally agrees. As they work side by side, Lark begins to realize that the deepest satisfaction comes not so much from what you do, or where you do it, but from the attitude of your heart.