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Winning the Gentleman by Kristi Ann Hunter

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1817 – England

Aaron Whitworth hasn’t had control over most aspects of his life, but he’s always taken pride in being an honorable businessman and better-than-average horseman. When both of those claims are threatened, he makes the desperate decision to hire the horse trainer of a traveling circus as a temporary jockey for his racehorses.

Sophia Fitzroy knows that most horsemen don’t take her seriously because she’s a woman, but she can’t pass up the opportunity to get away from the tumultuous world of travel and performing. As she fights for the right to do the work she was hired for, she learns the fight for Aaron’s guarded heart might be an even more worthwhile challenge.

As secrets come to light and past vulnerabilities are confronted, will Aaron and Sophia sacrifice their former dreams and forge a new one together–against all odds?

A Time to Seek by Tracy Higley

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1300s BC/1922 – Egypt

Sahara Aldridge, a young Egyptologist in 1922, is making a name for herself on the digsite soon to become Egypt’s most sensational discovery—the tomb of the boy-king, Tutankhamun. Despite opposition from a mostly-male profession, Sahara fights to continue the legacy of her Egyptologist parents, who died tragically at sea when she was a teen.

But then a childhood friend finds a lost journal written by Sahara’s mother, hinting at the bizarre possibility of time-travel, and a crazy suspicion forces Sahara to confront a freak incident years earlier…Is it possible her parents were time travelers? And has she inherited this mind-blowing ability?

When the American journalist Jack Moretti begins asking too many questions, Sahara suspects he knows more than he’s telling. Did her parents truly perish in an accident? Or did someone target and murder them because of their time traveling gift?

There’s only one way to unearth the truth. Sahara must travel back in time, to the days of King Tut. But the biggest surprise is yet to come… the truth about her parents, and about her own destiny, discovered in the whispers of conspiracy around the death of Egypt’s most famous Pharaoh. But what secrets are better left buried?

Preacher on the Run by Jayna Baas

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1771 – North Carolina

Robert Boothe has spent the last four years leading the tyrant-hating Regulators in standing against North Carolina’s corrupt British government. Just being an unlicensed dissenter preacher is enough to make Robert a target, but he refuses to back down from his conscience. Aside from a sympathetic court justice, the village of Ayen Ford has no other champion for its poor and defenseless.

Then Charles Drake, emissary of His Excellency William Tryon, comes to town with one ambition: winning the governor’s favor, no matter what it takes. And Robert Boothe just might be his last chance.

All Robert wants is a safe place for his little Baptist church to live and worship God. But the established church wants him to shut up. The governor’s men want him dead. And that safe place is farther and farther away.

You can run, but you can’t hide . . .

The Good German Girl by Erica Marie Hogan

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1944 – France/Germany

June 6, 1944. Omaha Beach.

When battle-hardened Private Bernie Russell witnesses a fellow soldier shoot a young German boy with his hands up, he’s shaken to his very core. Then, as that same boy is dying, he presses a packet of photographs and letters into Bernie’s hand and utters three words in English.

“It must end.”

After having the letters translated, he discovers they were written by the soldier’s twin sister, and the photographs within the packet reveal evidence of Hitler’s plan to wipe out the Jews.

Berlin, Germany.

Margot Raskopf is a young art teacher, forced to conform to the education Hitler has designed. Then, when one of her sources with the underground resistance receives a letter for her from an American soldier, she’s shocked and filled with renewed hope. But Margot has been harboring a secret. In her house, she hides a young Jewish woman she’s known since childhood, risking being discovered by the gestapo with each passing day.

As they begin a dangerous correspondence, both Margot and Bernie embark on treacherous journeys. One taking Bernie across Europe and right into Germany. Another taking Margot through the gates of Auschwitz … and under the scrutiny of Josef Mengele.

An Inconvenient Acquaintance by Sara Turnquist

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1870s – Arizona

Ada Clara Miller is the new schoolteacher in Tombstone. Her desire for independence stems from her brother’s tales of the west. But she never expected to find herself torn between two men—one who promises safety and security, the other’s future is uncertain and offers excitement.

Though Francis “Slim” Dagley is determined that he will not become involved with a woman of privilege, Ada’s fiery personality intrigues him. And draws him. Soon he is vying for her heart with a man he’d rather not trifle with.

Making matters worse, a violent gang skirts the law and makes life difficult for well-meaning ranchers. And their interactions with the Earps create ripples through Tombstone.

Will Slim and Ada find what they seek in each other? Or will they become caught up in a piece of history—the shootout at the O.K. Corral?

The Storm Breaks Forth by Terri Wangard

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1917 – Wisconsin/France

World War I rages in Europe, and now the United States joins in. Peter Bloch heads to France with the Wisconsin National Guard, but his wife Maren is the one under attack. She’s German born, and anti-German hysteria is running high. Simple suggestions for coping with wartime measures lead Maren into an active role in the community, but her service doesn’t help deflect suspicion from her. Zealous patriots target her with a vengeance. Peter caught the eye of a major who seems intent on using him as a spy. He’s been fortunate to avoid injury so far, but these activities are likely to get him killed. Peter and Maren dream of the day they will be reunited, but more and more, that day appears to be a mirage.

Aggressor by Camille Elliot

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1810s – England

One man faces death.

With the help of his team, Mr. Michael Coulson-Jones has overcome the deadly Root elixir that turned him into a monster. But now that they know more about the poisonous potion, he is faced with an inevitable truth—unless he agrees to the risk of taking more, he will eventually die.

One man faces theft.

In the meantime, a beautiful, infamous French spy and her group of thugs have landed on English soil, intent on stealing the mysterious plant that Apothecary Jack uses to control his underworld empire. They play a violent game of hide-and-seek with Michael’s team amidst the rookeries of London.

One man faces rage.

Then one of the team is afflicted by a savage, insane rage after exposure to the strange pollen of Jack’s plants. The team must not only battle the French spies and Apothecary Jack, but also a sickness of the mind tormenting one of their own.

Lily’s Pond by Julane Hiebert

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1939 – Kansas

With no money to pay the mortgage and nothing to prove she actually owns the land, the only way of life Lily Archer has ever known is threatened. Her small town of Anderson, Kansas, has contracted to secure its water supply by building a lake that will swallow the farm she’d promised never to leave.

Foreman of the city lake project, Joe Kendall is new in town and responsible to procure the land and supervise the project, but he didn’t anticipate Lily’s strength…or his weakness.

When Lily’s former beau returns to Anderson, she’s faced with a choice to revisit a promise she couldn’t make in order to keep a promise she can’t break.

Author Interview and Giveaway – A Tapestry of Light – Kimberly Duffy

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In A Tapestry of Light, Kimberly Duffy weaves earthy realism and intrigue to bring us a fresh look at socially conflicted romance. Welcome to the index, Kimberly!

 

 

 

 

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A Tapestry of Light

Ottilie Russell is adrift between two cultures, British and Indian, belonging to both and neither. In order to support her little brother, Thaddeus, and her grandmother, she relies upon her skills in beetle-wing embroidery that have been passed down to her through generations of Indian women.

When a stranger appears with the news that Thaddeus is now Baron Sunderson and must travel to England to take his place as a nobleman, Ottilie is shattered by the secrets that come to light. Despite her growing friendship with Everett Scott, friend to Ottilie’s English grandmother and aunt, she refuses to give up her brother. Then tragedy strikes, and she is forced to make a decision that will take Thaddeus far from death and herself far from home.

But betrayal and loss lurk in England, too, and soon Ottilie must fight to ensure Thaddeus doesn’t forget who he is, as well as find a way to stitch a place for herself in this foreign land.

 Kimberly’s Website

 

 

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Questions about Kimberly’s Story

What inspired this story?

A Tapestry of Light was inspired by a scrap of embroidered trim I saw at an Indian fabric exhibit at my local museum center. It was just gorgeous—pure white with a trailing ribbon of beetle wings that, even 150 years later, were vibrant and lustrous. As green as the day they’d been sewn. I never knew beetle wings had been used in fashion and something about it caught my fancy. People today would find some Victorian fashion sensibilities horrific—stuffed birds on hats, a dead loved one’s hair in a pin, and beetle wings on gowns—but then, no one thought anything about it. Incidentally, the beetles weren’t harvested until after they mated and died, so it was a pretty sustainable fashion trend.

Is there anything in this book that is inspired by/modeled after something in your own life or someone you know in real life?

The faith element of the story, which is a big part of the book and my heroine’s character arc, was based entirely on my own struggle with doubt and questions. Having grown up Christian, I wasn’t prepared for it and it wasn’t something anyone was discussing at the time. I really wanted to write a character whose faith isn’t perfect. Who faces hard things and asks hard questions, but perseveres and is a vessel for God’s faithfulness. Ottilie was also inspired by an Anglo-Indian women I met while in Bangalore decades ago. When I first met her, I didn’t know if she was a British woman wearing Indian clothing or an Indian woman with very British habits. Then I learned she was neither, but from a very distinct community that has roots in both cultures.

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

My favorite character is Thaddeus. He’s just such a little boy—all sweetness and rambunctious joy and uncomplicated emotion. I have four kids, ranging in ages from 5-16 so I think I’m pretty good at writing children. And I LOVE writing children.

Why did you choose the geographical location in which your book is set?

I chose Calcutta (Kolkata today) because it’s one of my favorite Indian cities. In the 19th century, when A Tapestry of Light is set, Calcutta was an interesting blend of European and Indian. The architecture, food, culture, art, society as a whole, kind of met and melded and blended. Yet there was a definite us vs. them mentality that caused all kinds of conflict and simmering tension. It was a bustling city, absolutely beautiful—you can see that today in the crumbling old bungalows and monuments, as well as the well-established gardens and parks—and contained a kind of European flare with French and Italian bakeries and restaurants, high-end dress makers, fancy hotels that catered to the wealthy—both British and Indian, and all the elegance you would expect of a highly cosmopolitan Victorian city.

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Questions about Kimberly’s Reading

Who is your favorite Christian Historical hero?

Marcus from Francine Rivers’ A Voice in the Wind. He’s so flawed. So taken by surprise by not only God’s love for him, but his love for Hadassah. He’s a protector, fierce when expected and gentle when necessary.

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? Laura Frantz. I just love everything she writes. Her books are so immersive, when I’m pulled out from one of her stories, it takes me a minute to place myself in 21st century Ohio again. My favorite books by her, so far, are A Moonbow Night and An Uncommon Woman. But I’m getting ready to read Tidewater Bride soon so that might make it into the list (and really, all of her books are wonderful.)

What was the last Christian Historical Novel that you read that made you think, “Man, I wish I’d written that”?

Havah by Tosca Lee. It’s one of my top ten favorite books of all time. It’s gorgeous and haunting and I have no idea how Tosca wrote Adam and Eve so believably with so little concrete information.

Kimberly is giving away either a print copy, USA only. Enter the Rafflecopter below!

**If you don’t want to enter the 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

The Egyptian Princess by K. D. Holmberg

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2085 BC – Egypt

Two women, one ancient Egyptian harem, and the daring decision that changed the course of history. 

In the opulent court of Egypt’s tenth dynasty, Princess Hagar has always known her destiny. One day, she will marry the Crown Prince Merikare and become the Great Royal Wife, the most powerful woman in Egypt. But dark dreams afflict Hagar the moment she hears of the latest addition to Pharaoh’s harem: the stunning, iridescent Sumerian, Sarai. Princess Hagar feels a powerful presence around the Sumerian woman. Hagar suspects Sarai has brought black magic into the palace—but what can she do to convince Pharaoh?  

The intrigue of Pharaoh’s court pales in comparison to that swirling in the Royal House of Women among the wives, children, and concubines of the king. Sarai’s arrival upsets the already precarious balance.  Loyalties divide, and betrayal, jealousy, and tragedy plague the once peaceful household. When a series of disasters befalls Egypt, Hagar must make a daring decision, and the stakes could not be higher. She could lose everything—her position, her power, her family, and even her life. 

Torn between the silent gods of Egypt and the powerful presence that surrounds Sarai, Hagar’s world falls apart around her. She must acknowledge the terrible price of truth, and decide for herself who she will serve.  

Hope Hope Between the Pages by Pepper Basham

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1915 – North Carolina

Uncover the Story Behind a One-Hundred-Year-Old Love Letter

Clara Blackwell helps her mother manage a struggling one-hundred-year old family bookshop in Asheville, North Carolina, but the discovery of a forgotten letter opens a mystery of a long-lost romance and undiscovered inheritance which could save its future. Forced to step outside of her predictable world, Clara embarks on an adventure with only the name Oliver as a hint of the man’s identity in her great-great-grandmother’s letter. From the nearby grand estate of the Vanderbilts, to a hamlet in Derbyshire, England, Clara seeks to uncover truth about family and love that may lead to her own unexpected romance.

The Indebted Earl by Erica Vetsch

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1814 – England

Can Captain Wyvern keep his new marriage of convenience all business–or will it turn into something more?

Captain Charles Wyvern owes a great debt to the man who saved his life–especially since Major Richardson lost his own life in the process. The best way to honor that hero’s dying wish is for Wyvern to escort the man’s grieving fiancée and mother safely to a new cottage home by the sea. But along the way, he learns of another obligation that has fallen on his shoulders: his uncle has died and the captain is now the Earl of Rothwell.

When he and the ladies arrive at his new manor house in Devon, they discover an estate in need of a leader and a gaggle of girls, all wards of the former earl. War the new earl knows; young ladies and properties he does not. Still wishing to provide for the bereaved Lady Sophia Haverly, Charles proposes a marriage of convenience.

Sophie is surprised to find she isn’t opposed to the idea. It will help her care for her betrothed’s elderly mother, and she’s already fallen in love with the wayward girls on the Rothwell estate. This alliance is a chance to repay the captain who has done so much for her care, as well as divert her attention from her grief. When Wyvern returns to his sea commission, she’ll stay behind to oversee his property and wards.

It sounds so simple. Until the stalwart captain is arrested on suspicion of smuggling, and Sophie realizes how much he’s come to mean to her. Now she’ll have to learn to fight, not only for his freedom but also for his love.

A Patchwork Past by Leslie Gould

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1871 – Illinois

When wild child Sophie Deiner–the daughter of an Amish bishop–is forced to return to Nappanee, Indiana, quilt-shop owner Jane Berger is one of only a few who welcome her back. It’s the last place she wants to be, but Sophie’s recent illness requires that she recover for a while.

As Sophie heals, she befriends a group of migrant workers and is appalled to learn of the wretched living conditions they’re forced to endure. Sophie begins advocating on their behalf, but soon finds herself opposed by an ex-boyfriend who is the farm foreman.

Jane begins relating the story of an Amish couple who rescued survivors of the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, many of whom were Irish immigrants. And Sophie is more convinced than ever that she needs to fight for the powerless. But when digging deeper makes conditions even worse, has she chosen a fight she can’t win?

The Test of Gold by Renee Yancy

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1897 – New York

Heiress Evangeline “Lindy” Lindenmayer has been groomed since childhood to marry into the British aristocracy as her mother’s ultimate ambition is a royal title for the family name. But literature fascinates Lindy far more than ballgowns, and she spends all her free time in the library, the only room in the Fifth Avenue mansion where she can safely indulge her passion for reading and find refuge from the prying eyes of her mother.

Jack Winthrop is studying for the ministry at Union Theological Seminary and has been invited to use the Lindemayer’s library for his studies. His sole experience of upper-class young women has occurred at his uncle’s church, where he has found these young debutantes universally featherbrained. When he meets Lindy, he is pleasantly surprised to discover she has wide-ranging interests and is highly intelligent. Although cautioned by his uncle to stay away from her, he finds Lindy a kindred spirit and over animated discussions of books and life, they fall in love.

But to reach happily ever after, Lindy will need to challenge her mother’s long-laid plans, and weathering the approaching storm will take more backbone than she even knew she had.

Courage in the Mountain Wilderness by Misty Beller

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1831 – Idaho

Keeping her son safe on this epic journey may be harder than she imagined.

Caleb Jackson is on a journey. And not just the mission he and his friends have embarked on to fetch the Nez Perce chief’s runaway daughter. Maybe someday, he could also find God’s plan for his life. He’d once thought being a small town minister was the Lord’s will for him, but he’d proved a failure at living under the scrutiny of his congregation. Yet the chief’s niece and her feisty toddler accompanying them on this expedition make him feel like he might be able to make a difference yet.

Otskai is eager to take on a challenge. She’s lived under the shelter of other’s choices her entire life, especially when she was betrothed to one of the village braves at the tender age of eight. Now with her husband’s death, she’s finally found the freedom she always craved—even with a two-year-old to raise. She’s built her camas root harvest into a thriving trade to provide all she and her son need and more, yet she can’t seem to keep her active child safe. When she agrees to accompany her new friends on a trip to bring back her wayward cousin, she knows she’ll have her hands full managing her boy.

The journey turns out nothing like Otskai expects, and for the first time in her life, she’s thankful to have others around to help. Especially Caleb, whose gentle attentions captivate her son and occupy him for hours at a time. But as the danger escalates and her worst fears come to light, she must find the courage to choose between freedom and a love more liberating than she imagined possible.

The Rose Keeper by Jennifer Lamont Leo

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1915/1944 – Illinois

July 1944. Chicago nurse Clara Janacek has spent her whole life taking care of other people. Grumpy yet loveable, all she wants now is to live out her life in peace, tending her roses and protecting her heart. But beneath the gruff exterior lies a story, and when new neighbors move in and shake up her quiet world, Clara must grapple with long-buried realities.

July 1915. The picnic across Lake Michigan was to be the highlight of the summer for young nurse Clara—a day filled with laughter, dancing, and budding romance aboard a stately excursion steamer. But when unspeakable tragedy strikes, Clara’s life is changed forever.

By turns funny, tender, and bittersweet, The Rose Keeper celebrates the redemptive hope found in friendship, faith, and the search for belonging.

A Tapestry of Light by Kimberly Duffy

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1885 – India/England

Ottilie Russell is adrift between two cultures, British and Indian, belonging to both and neither. In order to support her little brother, Thaddeus, and her grandmother, she relies upon her skills in beetle-wing embroidery that have been passed down to her through generations of Indian women.

When a stranger appears with the news that Thaddeus is now Baron Sunderson and must travel to England to take his place as a nobleman, Ottilie is shattered by the secrets that come to light. Despite her growing friendship with Everett Scott, friend to Ottilie’s English grandmother and aunt, she refuses to give up her brother. Then tragedy strikes, and she is forced to make a decision that will take Thaddeus far from death and herself far from home.

But betrayal and loss lurk in England, too, and soon Ottilie must fight to ensure Thaddeus doesn’t forget who he is, as well as find a way to stitch a place for herself in this foreign land.

Sword of Trust by Debbie Lynne Costello

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1399 – England

Deirdre Mackenzie has spent her life hiding from her father and hating the English. However, when she is caught stealing from an English laird, his unexpected kindness begins to melt away her hatred and strums lonely heartstrings longing for love. Bryce Warwick discovers the “boy” caught with his livestock is actually a young woman. After several attempts to lure the truth from her, he determines she is as deceitful as his late fiancée who nearly cost him his life. But the woman is the least of his worries with the turbulence brought on by threats of another border war and by King Richard’s distrust of the nobles.
With old wounds in need of healing and adversaries who would ruin their chances at true love, both must learn to trust in a way they never knew possible.
The stakes are high, secrets prevail, and treason is just a kiss away.

Biltmore Girl by Dawn Klinge

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1968 – New York

Elka Hansen, a former teen cover girl, is done with modeling. Now she’s a hostess for the Palm Court restaurant in the beautiful Biltmore Hotel. As she sees it, Elka’s other job is to watch out for her younger sister, Colleen, an idealistic but reckless college student at Barnard.

With her sister, Elka attends her first civil-rights protest, and there, she runs into Jacob Lewis, a co-worker from the Biltmore. He’s a student at Columbia University and a friend of Colleen’s. Jacob becomes an unexpected ally when rescuing her sister from trouble becomes more than Elka can handle independently. Out of this turmoil, a romance grows between Jacob and Elka, but can it last?

Redeemed Love by Linda Ford

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1849 – California

Hope White is one of the preacher’s daughters. She’s a loving, giving person who plans to start missionary work in California.

Clay Adams was raised by a strict preacher grandfather who constantly criticized him and treated him harshly. Now all he wants is adventure and freedom. But his first venture into ‘freedom’ landed him in hot water with a bad bunch. He wants to leave behind this particular adventure and tries to flee to California. On the journey, he grows ill and lies dying on the desert floor.

Hope and her father find Clay and care for him. But there are spots on his chest to indicate he has typhoid fever so the wagon master insists they must keep their distance. While her pa drives the wagon, Hope tends the sick man. As he becomes lucid, they talk, and learn things about each other that convince them they are the worst person in the world for the other.

As they cross the mountains, more of Clay’s secrets are revealed. Hope’s trust is shattered, but when the family wagon breaks an axle, she has no choice but to rely on Clay.

Can she trust him to rescue both her and her father? Can she trust her heart and God? Will Clay prove he’s a changed man?

Reluctant Love by Linda Ford

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1849 – California

Sarah Goodine lost her husband on their journey across the Great Plains. After a herd of stampeding buffalo rampage over her wagon, she has nothing left. Nothing other than the three children depending on her. How can she get them to safety in California? This journey was meant to protect her six-year-old son, but now the little family is in dire straits.

Davis Carpenter’s wife and newborn baby died on the trail. He has his hands full dealing with his two remaining children. His dream of joining his cousin on a ranch in California seems unimportant now but he has no choice but to continue on.

There is only one thing that will help Sarah and Davis complete this journey—a marriage of convenience. They have no intention of falling in love. Can their children help them see that a real family requires love?

Journey of Peace by Connie Stevens

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1880s – North Carolina

Pointed fingers of condemnation accuse Margaret Rose Fellrath of aiding and abetting her outlaw brothers despite the lack of convicting evidence. When her brothers escape jail, all options are stolen from her except one: she must leave Raleigh and go where nobody has ever heard of the Fellrath brothers. The tiny mountain town of Hot Springs, North Carolina, seems the perfect spot for a new start. Introducing herself as Rose Miller, she finds employment as a chambermaid at the posh Mountain Park Hotel and Resort. She prays she can keep to herself and remain “invisible,” and somehow satisfy the head housekeeper’s impossible demands.

Cullen Delaney’s groundskeeper job at the Mountain Park Hotel and Resort is safe and predictable, but his second job—working part-time with the town sheriff—instills instincts that his father would have taught him if an outlaw’s bullet hadn’t cut Pa down. When he meets Rose Miller, his suspicious nature is piqued by her reticent behavior. What is she hiding?

Despite efforts to remain aloof and distant from everyone at the Mountain Park, Rose’s memories of her mother and the faith they shared nudge her to step beyond safe shadows. Mama always said doing something kind for someone else would make her forget her own troubles, and Rose can’t keep herself from doing what she knows Mama would tell her to do. But demonstrations of kindness bring unwanted attention, and Rose realizes she has broken her own rule. If her identity is revealed, she’ll have no choice but to run again. How she wishes she could trust someone—Cullen most of all.

Uzura Seki: Black Sand by Murray Pura

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1945 – Japan

The year was 1945. The war against Japan was over. Three men, best friends who had survived the horrors of combat, returned home and began to live another life, a better life. What had happened on the green islands of the South Pacific was forgotten or pushed away so far it could never come back to haunt them.

Except the war wouldn’t go away. It couldn’t be forgotten. It could never be pushed far enough away. The men awoke each morning to fight their battles over and over again. Now we call it PTSD. In the past, it was shell shock or combat fatigue. The three friends could not shake the darkness. It would take the women who loved them to bring the healing that would make the men whole again and bring them into the beautiful light of day.

Broken Limbs, Mended Hearts by Regina Jennings

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1868 – Texas

When a young man from her past returns and upends their small town with his new invention, schoolteacher Bella Eden is reminded of the heartbreak she suffered years ago under the old oak tree. After her job is put on the line, can she trust the man who disrupted her life to help her fight for a brighter future?

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From Roots to Sky by Amanda Dykes

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1945 – Texas

WWII airman Luke Hampstead found comfort in letters from the sister of a lost compatriot. When he visits Texas to thank her, he discovers her constructing a project with surprising ties to his letters. . . and that she herself is even more surprising. While a promising opportunity awaits him elsewhere, will what they’ve shared be enough to give their future flight?

 

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Inn for a Surprise by Karen Witemeyer

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1891 – Texas

Despite her own life being void of romance, spinster Phoebe Woodward adores love stories, especially those connected to the local Kissing Tree. Determined to foster romance in the lives of others, she builds an inn by the tree that caters to couples. When her father sends a property manager to help make the venture a success, however, she finds her whimsical vision thwarted at every turn by stodgy practicality. Finding the right blend of romance and reality is a challenge, but when the two bleed into her personal life, Phoebe’s spinster heart may be in for a surprise.

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Author Interview and Giveaway – My Dear Miss Dupre – Grace Hitchcock

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This month’s author never fails to bring sweet romance, vibrant characters and exciting adventures. With an elite courting contest, hidden motives, and dual identities…My Dear Miss Dupre is sure to follow suit. Welcome to the Index, Grace!

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My Dear Miss Dupre

Willow Dupré never thought she would have to marry, but with her father’s unexpected retirement from running the prosperous Dupré sugar refinery, she is forced into a different future. The shareholders are unwilling to allow a female to take over the company without a man at her side, so her parents devise a plan–find Willow a spokesman king in order for her to become queen of the business empire.

Willow is presented with thirty potential suitors from the families of New York society’s elite group called the Four Hundred. She has six months to court the group and is told to to eliminate men each month to narrow her beaus until she chooses one to marry, ending the competition with a wedding. Willow reluctantly agrees, knowing she must do what is best for the business. She doesn’t expect to find anything other than a proxy . . . until she meets a gentleman who captures her attention, and she must discover for herself if his motives are pure.

Grace’s Website

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Questions about Grace’s Story

Did any of the characters in this book “surprise” you?

Fritz Blythe was a complete astonishment in how he became one of the lead gentlemen! As Fritz is a budding flower dictionary author, I enjoyed researching for his vocation and in that research, his character bloomed and it made me emotional when his story had to take a turn . . . which I cannot reveal without spoilers!

Which scene (give us the chapter) is your favorite, the one you never tired of working with? Give us a reason to look forward to it.

Chapter 15 has one of my favorite scenes that was one of the very last I added after the first round of major edits with my publisher. In this scene, I have the characters visit Bailey’s Beach for the day where Willow has a series of quite calamitous events happen to her that had me laughing while writing and hopefully will have the reader laughing as well.

Did you include a real historical character or incident in your story?

The Vanderbilt ball, in all its lavishness, is one of the most famous balls in history. So, most of the outlandish costumes you see in those chapters, as well as the mention of quadrilles, are factual. In researching for the ball scenes, I was amazed at the grandeur and the amount spent for a single night of entertainment for New York’s elite families, $6 million in today’s money.

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Questions about Grace’s Reading

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

Courting Morrow Little by Laura Frantz. This is the third time I’ve read this beauty from Laura and it is, in a word, MAGICAL. Get ready to neglect everything when you open this romantic, action-packed tale from Laura Frantz! With wonderful characters and a dreamy romance, you will find yourself on the frontier with Morrow thanks to the author’s rich descriptions.

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?

Jen Turano! During a time where I needed to laugh, I discovered her works, but not only do her stories help the world fade away, there is always a spiritual thread that makes the reader pause and reflect.  A Most Peculiar Circumstance will have readers laughing one moment and on the edge of their seats the next with this delightful tale filled with humor, romance, and suspense.

Grace is giving away two paperbacks, US Only. Enter the Rafflecopter below!

**If you don’t want to enter the 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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Painted Memories by A. M. Heath

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1956 – Tennessee

She moved on when the love of her life died in the war, but what will happen when she finds out he’s alive?  

Olivia Jernigan never thought she’d get over Grady. But three years after his death, she’s on the verge of marrying Kenneth Wade when she receives a new painting by her deceased fiance. Olivia flees home to learn what really happened to the man she thought died in the Korean War. The man she thought loved her enough to come home for her.

Grady Barnes woke up three years ago in a hospital room with no knowledge of his identity. The only memory to resurface is the image of a woman he can’t stop painting. When she suddenly shows up at his painting class, she may help him discover where he really belongs or she may disrupt the life he was building for himself.

Olivia and Grady have a history. But now, they wonder if they still have a future … or perhaps, their love is just a painted memory. 

The Curator’s Daughter by Melanie Dobson

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1940 – Germany

A young girl, kidnapped on the eve of World War II, changes the lives of a German archaeologist forced into the Nazi Party and―decades later―a researcher trying to overcome her own trauma.
1940. Hanna Tillich cherishes her work as an archaeologist for the Third Reich, searching for the Holy Grail and other artifacts to bolster evidence of a master Aryan race. But when she is reassigned to work as a museum curator in Nuremberg, then forced to marry an SS officer and adopt a young girl, Hanna begins to see behind the Nazi facade. A prayer labyrinth becomes a storehouse for Hanna’s secrets, but as she comes to love Lilly as her own daughter, she fears that what she’s hiding―and what she begins to uncover―could put them both in mortal danger.

Eighty years later, Ember Ellis is a Holocaust researcher intent on confronting hatred toward the Jewish people and other minorities. She reconnects with a former teacher on Martha’s Vineyard after she learns that Mrs. Kiehl’s mother once worked with the Nazi Ahnenerbe. And yet, Mrs. Kiehl describes her mother as “a friend to the Jewish people.” Wondering how both could be true, Ember helps Mrs. Kiehl regain her fractured childhood memories of World War II while at the same time confronting the heartache of her own secret past―and the person who wants to silence Ember forever.

Wagon Train Weekend by Stephenia McGee

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1857 – Oregon

It was just one night at a Victorian B&B. Until they woke up in 1857.

Collette Donaldson never should have taken her boyfriend to her cousin’s wedding. Or introduced him to her parents. After a disastrous weekend, all she wants is to get back home and sort out the mess that had once been their relationship. A heartbreaking fight, a flat tire, and an inconvenient storm force her and Seth to stay the night at a quaint bed and breakfast. But when Collette finds an antique photograph of herself, circumstances quickly shift from weird to unimaginable.

Seth Stone was ready to propose. Now he isn’t sure if he and Collette even have a relationship. People he’d never want to be his in-laws, an irritable girlfriend, and now he has to spend the night in a creepy old Victorian inn. He should have never wondered how things could possibly get worse. When they wake up stranded on a wagon train in 1857, Seth is determined to get home. But the only way to get out of the past is to face the problems stealing their future.

Destined For You by Tracie Peterson

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1869 – Minnesota

In 1869, Gloriana Womack’s family is much smaller since smallpox killed her mother and two of her siblings. She lives in a modest cottage in Duluth, Minnesota, with her father and young brother, and she has dedicated her life to holding her tiny, fractured family together–especially as her father is frequently gone on long fishing trips. Their livelihood may come from the waters of Lake Superior, but storms on the lake can be dangerous, even to those who know it well.

Luke Carson has come to Duluth to help shepherd the arrival of the railroad to the city’s port, and he’s eager to be reunited with his brother, Scott, who recently moved there with his pregnant wife. Competition for the railroad is fierce, with the neighboring city of Superior, Wisconsin, fighting for the tracks to come through their town instead. But the real danger lies in a resident of Duluth who is determined to have his revenge upon Luke.

When tragedy brings Gloriana and Luke together, they help each other through their grief and soon find their lives inextricably linked. If they survive the trials ahead, could it be possible they’ve been destined for each other all along?

My Dear Miss Dupre by Grace Hitchcock

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1883 – New York

Thirty suitors, six months of courting . . .
would it be enough time for her to fall in love?

Willow Dupré never thought she would have to marry, but with her father’s unexpected retirement from running the prosperous Dupré sugar refinery, she is forced into a different future. The shareholders are unwilling to allow a female to take over the company without a man at her side, so her parents devise a plan—find Willow a spokesman king in order for her to become queen of the business empire.

Willow is presented with thirty potential suitors from the families of New York society’s elite group called the Four Hundred. She has six months to court the group and is told to eliminate men each month to narrow her beaus until she chooses one to marry, ending the competition with a wedding. Willow reluctantly agrees, knowing she must do what is best for the business. She doesn’t expect to find anything other than a proxy . . . until she meets a gentleman who captures her attention, and she must discover for herself if his motives are pure.

Miriam’s Song by Jill Eileen Smith

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1500s BC – Egypt/Middle East

In her eventful lifetime, Miriam was many things to many people: protective older sister, song leader, prophetess, leper. But between the highs and the lows, she was a girl who dreamed of freedom, a woman who longed for love, a leader who made mistakes, and a friend who valued connection.

With her impeccable research and keen eye for detail, bestselling author Jill Eileen Smith offers this epic story to fill in the gaps and imagine how Miriam navigated the challenges of holding onto hope, building a family in the midst of incredible hardship, and serving as a leader of a difficult people, all the while living in her brother’s shadow.

Follow Miriam’s dusty journey from childhood to motherhood, obscurity to notoriety, and yearning to fulfillment as she learns that what God promises he provides—in his own perfect timing.

Rain by Dana McNeely

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870 BC – Israel

He is destined to be high priest—but at what cost to those he loves?

In ancient Samaria, Aban anticipates his rites of passage with excitement and dread. He yearns to join the priesthood of Ba’al Melqart, unlock the power of the rain god, and hear the deity’s voice. He’s been warned the licentious ceremony can take a dangerous turn, but as eldest son of the high priestess, he holds a privileged position. If he can make it through the ceremony, one day he’ll rise to high priest.

On the eve of the rituals, Aban’s mother confesses a dark secret about the bloody sacrifice demanded by Melqart. Aban may have escaped the flames, but if he is to save his brother, Aban must take his destined position of power as soon as possible.

When the mysterious prophet Elijah interrupts the rites, overturns the idol, and curses the land with drought, Aban’s world is shaken. The current high priest and the king appear powerless, but even more confusing is the fact that the rain god does nothing.

Against his better judgment, Aban conceals the strange prophet’s whereabouts, forfeiting the high priesthood. Now an enemy of the relentless Queen Jezebel, Aban has little time to question his fading commitment to Ba’al Melqart as he and his loved ones flee. But the conflict in Samaria is much larger than just a high priestess and her sons. Soon, Aban will have to choose a side in Yahweh’s war against the Ba’als—and it may cost him his life.

The Purple Nightgown by A. D. Lawrence

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1912 – Washington

Marvel at true but forgotten history when patients check into Linda Hazzard’s Washington state spa in 1912 and soon become victim of her twisted greed.
 
Heiress Stella Burke is plagued by insincere suitors and nonstop headaches. Exhausting all other medical aides for her migraines, Stella reads Fasting for the Cure of Disease by Linda Hazzard and determines to go to the spa the author runs. Stella’s chauffer and long-time friend, Henry Clayton, is reluctant to leave her at the spa. Something doesn’t feel right to him, still Stella submits herself into Linda Hazzard’s care. Stella soon learns the spa has a dark side and Linda a mean streak. But when Stella has had enough, all ways to leave are suddenly blocked. Will Stella become a walking skeleton like many of the other patients or succumb to a worse fate?

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