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In the Shadow of Salem by Donna Gawell

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1692 – Massachusetts

She began life as the bastard child of a prosperous landowner and his indentured servant. Now her stepmother despises the girl and views her as cursed by God.

For Mehitabel Braybrooke, life in Puritan New England becomes unbearable when her orphan cousin arrives to live with her family. Jealousy and lies result in Mehitabel being “sent out” as a servant to a neighbor’s home. There, foolishness and bad judgment lead her to commit the unspeakable: Mehitabel commits crimes that warrant a death sentence: not once, but twice — the first time for arson, the second for witchcraft.

Rich in historical detail, In the Shadow of Salem is a fascinating portrayal of a real historical Puritan woman. The history records have not been kind to Mehitabel, but what was the real story behind her scurrilous reputation? Would she ever be redeemed from her lifelong curse? Or was Mehitabel as wicked as the Essex Court Records suggest?

The Fashion Designer by Nancy Moser

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1912 – New York

Annie Wood, the housemaid-turned-pattern designer in The Pattern Artist, jumps at the chance to design her own clothing line when a wealthy New York couple offers to finance her endeavor. Joining the project is Annie’s new husband, Sean Culver, her best friend at Butterick, Maude Nascato, and a mother figure, Edna Holmquist.
 
Annie and her colleagues give up their careers, risking everything to follow a shared passion: clothes that are both fashionable and functional for modern, busy women in 1912.
 
Personal and financial setbacks test old relationships and new romances while threatening to keep the business from ever selling a single dress. No one said it would be easy. But the promise of the American Dream holds a deep hope for those who work hard, trust God, and never give up.

The Love Letter by Rachel Hauck

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1780s/Present Day – South Carolina/California

Romance has never been actress Chloe Daschle’s forte—in life or on screen. But everyone knows who to call for a convincing death scene . . . and it might be killing her career.

When Chloe is given a peek at the script for an epic love story, she decides to take her destiny into her own hands and request an audition for the lead female role, Esther Kingsley. The compelling tale, inspired by family lore and a one-page letter from the colonial ancestor of scriptwriter Jesse Gates, just might break her out of this career-crippling rut. Jesse would rather write about romance than live through it after his past relationship ended in disaster. But once on-set together, the chemistry between Jesse and his leading lady is hard to deny.

Centuries earlier, in the heart of the Revolutionary War, Hamilton Lightfoot and Esther Longfellow wrote their saga off the silver screen. Esther’s Loyalist father opposes any relationship with Hamilton, but Esther must face her beloved father’s disapproval and the dangers of war in order to convince Hamilton of their future together. Hamilton has loved Esther for years, and on the eve of battle pens the love letter she’s always wanted—something straight from the heart.  

Among the Poppies by J’nell Ciesielski

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1915 – France

The ideal lady wears lace, speaks quietly, and never—under any circumstances—fixes an automobile. But Gwyn Ruthers has never cared two snaps about being the ideal lady. With the war to end all wars exploding across the English Channel, she leaves behind her restrictive life as a chauffer’s daughter to serve in an all-female ambulance unit in France. She’s not about to let her social status or gender prevent her from serving her country. Not even a handsome captain can distract her from her mission. Most of the time.

Captain William Crawford wouldn’t wish the ravages of war on any man, much less the captivating woman who insists on driving into battle instead of staying safely at home. He can’t deny that the troops need more medical help, but not when it puts innocent women in danger. How can he lead his men against the Jerries while worrying about Gwyn’s safety?

Bound together by circumstances, Gwyn and William can’t stop the love growing between them. Can their relationship survive, or will it become another casualty of war?

 

Author Interview & Giveaway – The Captured Bride – Michelle Griep

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I’m excited to have Michelle on the blog. I recently read Brentwood’s Ward and I’m now a fan. Here’s her newest!

thecapturedbride

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The Captured Bride

A War-Torn Countryside Is No Place for a Lady

Mercy Lytton is a lady like none other. Raised amongst the Mohawks, she straddles two cultures, yet each are united in one cause. . .to defeat the French. Born with a rare gift of unusually keen eyesight, she is chosen as a scout to accompany a team of men on a dangerous mission. Yet it is not her life that is threatened. It is her heart. 

Condemned as a traitor, Elias Dubois faces the gallows. At the last minute, he is offered his freedom if he consents to accompany a stolen shipment of French gold to a nearby fort—but he is the one they stole it from in the first place. It turns out that the real thief is the beguiling woman, Mercy Lytton, for she steals his every waking thought.  

Can love survive divided loyalties in a backcountry wilderness?

Michelle’s Website

Headshot Michelle GRIEP

 

Join the adventure as the Daughters of the Mayflower series continues with The Captured Bride by Michelle Griep.

Book I: The Mayflower Bride by Kimberley Woodhouse – set 1620 Atlantic Ocean (February 2018)
Book II: The Pirate Bride by Kathleen Y’Barbo – set 1725 New Orleans (April 2018)

Here’s a fun site you might want to mention. It’s just for the Daughters of the Mayflower series and offers extras and freebies. http://www.daughtersofthemayflower.com/

mayflowerbridepiratebride 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Questions about Michelle’s Story

What inspired your story?

The idea for this story came from a legend that sprang up during the years of the French and Indian War and was first printed in an 1875 Ohio newspaper. Apparently there was a shipment of French gold being moved from Fort Duquesne to Fort Detroit. En route, the French soldiers were afraid of an impending attack, either by Indians or British soldiers—it’s unclear. They decided to bury the gold and then hide until the threat passed. When they went back to retrieve their cargo, it was gone. Where did it go? To this day, no one knows.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

For research, my husband and I took a trip last summer to upstate New York. Wow. I had no idea how beautiful that part of the country is! The highlight of this trip was visiting a 3 day re-enactment camp set at Fort Niagara. They condensed an entire 18 day siege of the fort down to 36 hours.

What research did you have to look up to make your character’s professional decisions authentic?

My heroine is a scout for the British army. While I didn’t uncover any actual women scouts set during this period, I did find many women who were messengers. In actuality, a scout is a messenger, bringing back news of what they’ve seen, so I based my information on those brave women who passed news along the front.

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Questions about Michelle’s Reading

amoonbownight

What Christian Historical Novel did you reread last, and why did you reread it?

Author Laura Frantz is a huge inspiration to me. Her writing is always stellar, but in particular, I re-read A Moonbow Night to get into the mood of this era. She captures Colonial dialogue like none other.

ladyjanedisappears

If your job was to sell one author’s historical fiction (besides your own) which author’s wares would you want to peddle? And which is your favorite by that author?

A new-to-me author I recently discovered is Joanna Davidson Politano. Her debut novel, Lady Jayne Disappears, is absolutely exquisite. It’s set in Victorian England, and as the name implies, is a bit of a mystery. I love both those elements. But what I really love is her beautiful prose. Her combination of words paints mind pictures like none other.

Michelle is giving away either a signed paperback or ebook (USA only) and I’m giving away winner’s choice of ebook of any of the books mentioned above. Enter the Rafflecopter below!

**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.**

a Rafflecopter giveaway

A Rebel Heart by Beth White

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1870 – Mississippi

Five years after the final shot was fired in the War Between the States, Selah Daughtry can barely manage to keep herself, her two younger sisters, and their spinster cousin fed and clothed. With their family’s Mississippi plantation swamped by debt and the Big House falling down around them, the only option seems to be giving up their ancestral land.

Pinkerton agent and former Union cavalryman Levi Riggins is investigating a series of robberies and sabotage linked to the impoverished Daughtry plantation. Posing as a hotel management agent for the railroad, he tells Selah he’ll help her save her home, but only if it is converted into a hotel. With Selah otherwise engaged with renovations, Levi moves onto the property to “supervise” while he actually attends to his real assignment right under her nose.

Selah isn’t sure she entirely trusts the handsome Yankee, but she’d do almost anything to save her home. What she never expected to encounter was his assault on her heart.

A Defense of Honor by Kristi Ann Hunter

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1816 – England

When Katherine “Kit” FitzGilbert turned her back on London society more than a decade ago, she determined never to set foot in a ballroom again. But when business takes her to London and she’s forced to run for her life, she stumbles upon not only a glamorous ballroom but also Graham, Lord Wharton. What should have been a chance encounter becomes much more as Graham embarks on a search for his friend’s missing sister and is convinced Kit knows more about the girl than she’s telling.

After meeting Graham, Kit finds herself wishing things could have been different for the first time in her life, but what she wants can’t matter. Long ago, she dedicated herself to helping women escape the same scorn that drove her from London and raising the innocent children caught in the crossfire. And as much as she desperately wishes to tell Graham everything, revealing the truth isn’t worth putting him and everyone she loves in danger.

Orphan Train Sweetheart by Mollie Campbell

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1860 – Nebraska

Spring Hill is the orphan train’s last stop—a final chance for Simon McKay to find homes for his young charges. When his fellow placing agent quits, Simon enlists help from the frontier town’s pretty schoolteacher. Cecilia Holbrook is as intriguing as she is independent, yet Simon’s devotion to his mission will soon call him back to New York.

Long overshadowed by her flirtatious sister, Cecilia is done with waiting for a man to choose her. She’s already fighting the school board to keep her position. Now she’s struggling not to lose her heart to Simon. Could their shared concern for the children show them how to follow a new dream, together?

Where the Fire Falls by Karen Barnett

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1929 – California

Watercolorist Olivia Rutherford has shed her humble beginnings to fashion her image as an avant-garde artist to appeal to the region’s wealthy art-collectors. When she lands a lucrative contract painting illustrations of Yosemite National Park for a travel magazine, including its nightly one-of-a-kind Firefall event, she hopes the money will lift Olivia and her sisters out of poverty.

    After false accusations cost him everything, former minister Clark Johnson has found purpose as a backcountry guide in this natural cathedral of granite and trees. Now he’s faced with the opportunity to become a National Parks Ranger, but is it his true calling?

    As Clark opens Olivia’s eyes to the wonders of Yosemite, she discovers the people are as vital to the park’s story as its vistas–a revelation that may bring her charade to an end.

More Than Meets the Eye by Karen Witemeyer

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1894 – Texas

Many consider Evangeline Hamilton cursed. Orphaned at a young age and possessing a pair of mismatched eyes–one bright blue, the other dark brown–Eva has fought to find her way in a world that constantly rejects her. Yet the support of even one person can help overcome the world’s judgments, and Eva has two–Seth and Zach, two former orphans she now counts as brothers.

Seeking justice against the man who stole his birthright and destroyed his family, Logan Fowler arrives in 1880s Pecan Gap, Texas, to confront Zach Hamilton, the hardened criminal responsible for his father’s death. Only instead of finding a solitary ruthless gambler, he discovers a man not much older than himself with an unusual family. When Zach’s sister, Evangeline, insists on dousing Logan with sunshine every time their paths cross, Logan finds his quest completely derailed. Who is truly responsible for his lost legacy, and will restoring the past satisfy if it means forfeiting a future with Evangeline?

A Daring Venture by Elizabeth Camden

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1908 – New York

As a biochemist in early 1900s New York, Doctor Rosalind Werner has dedicated her life to the crusade against waterborne diseases. She is at the forefront of a groundbreaking technology that will change the way water is delivered to every household in the city–but only if she can get people to believe in her work.

Newly appointed Commissioner of Water for New York, Nicholas Drake is highly skeptical of Rosalind and her team’s techniques. When a brewing court case throws him into direct confrontation with her, he is surprised by his reaction to the lovely scientist.

While Rosalind and Nick wage a private war against their own attraction, they stand firmly on opposite sides of a battle that will impact far more than just their own lives. As the controversy grows more public and inflammatory and Rosalind becomes the target of an unknown enemy, the odds stacked against these two rivals swiftly grow more insurmountable with every passing day.

The Solace of Water by Elizabeth Byler Younts

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1956 – Pennsylvania

In a time of grief and heartache, an unlikely friendship provides strength and solace.

After leaving her son’s grave behind in Montgomery, Alabama, Delilah Evans has little faith that moving to her husband’s hometown in Pennsylvania will bring a fresh start. Enveloped by grief and doubt, the last thing Delilah imagines is becoming friends with her reclusive Amish neighbor, Emma Mullet—yet the secrets that keep Emma isolated from her own community bond her to Delilah in delicate and unexpected ways.

Delilah’s eldest daughter, Sparrow, bears the brunt of her mother’s pain, never allowed for a moment to forget she is responsible for her brother’s death. When tensions at home become unbearable for her, she seeks peace at Emma’s house and becomes the daughter Emma has always wanted. Sparrow, however, is hiding secrets of her own—secrets that could devastate them all.

With the white, black, and Amish communities of Sinking Creek at their most divided, there seems to be little hope for reconciliation. But long-buried hurts have their way of surfacing, and Delilah and Emma find themselves facing their own self-deceptions. Together they must learn how to face the future through the healing power of forgiveness.

Eminently relevant to the beauty and struggle in America today, The Solace of Water offers a glimpse into the turbulent 1950s and reminds us that friendship rises above religion, race, and custom—and has the power to transform a broken heart.

The Road to Magnolia Glen by Pam Hillman

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1792 – Mississippi

Bitter since his eldest brother abandoned their family in Ireland, Quinn O’Shea travels to Natchez, Mississippi, ready to shuck the weight of his duty and set off on an adventure of his own. It’s time Connor, as head of the family, took responsibility for their younger siblings. While aboard ship, a run-in with three Irish sisters lands Quinn in the role of reluctant savior. Though it may delay his plans, he cannot abandon the Young sisters, especially the tenacious yet kind Kiera.

Upon arriving in the colonies, Kiera Young prepares to meet her intended and begin her new life. But she soon discovers the marriage her brother-in-law arranged was never meant to be, and a far more sinister deal was negotiated for her and her sisters.

Quinn offers to escort his charges safely to Breeze Hill Plantation and his brother’s care, fully intending to seek his freedom elsewhere. But the longer he remains, the greater his feelings toward Kiera grow and the more he comes to realize true freedom might be found in sacrifice.

Ruffling Society by Kay Moser

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1898 – Texas

Things are looking up in Riverford, Texas in June 1898. Czech immigrant, Sarah Novak, is finally graduating from teacher s college. Surely she will now put aside all that foolishness about being a professional woman and marry Lee Logan. After all, what young woman could ask for more? Lee is a handsome, young banker who will take his new bride off to bustling Fort Worth, Texas, and give her a life of luxury.

And when Sarah finally marries Lee, Victoria Hodges, that red-haired, trouble-making, bohemian artist from Europe, will be forced to admit that Sarah cannot change tradition-bound Riverford.

But moments after Sarah receives her diploma tragedy strikes Riverford, forcing Sarah and Victoria to work together in order to save the town. Can love blossom amidst conflicting cultures and backgrounds.

 

Handpicked Family by Shannon Farrington

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1865 – Virginia

After the Civil War, newspaper editor Peter Carpenter insists he’ll never marry or raise children in such a troubling world. His commitment to bachelorhood only intensifies as he and his lovely assistant, Trudy Martin, search the ravaged Shenandoah Valley for his missing widowed sister-in-law and her baby.

Ever the optimist, Trudy refuses to embrace Peter’s bleak outlook. Unfortunately, that doesn’t diminish her deep feelings for him—feelings she knows he’ll never reciprocate. But when Peter and Trudy become responsible for two war orphans, will Peter still keep his heart closed to his newfound family…or can he find hope in fatherhood?

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