Southern

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The Promise of Breeze Hill by Pam Hillman



MY REVIEW:

I thoroughly enjoyed the author’s previous books, “Stealing Jake” and “Claiming Mariah” so I felt certain that her latest novel “The Promise of Breeze Hill” would be equally enjoyable. Pam Hillman came through with flying colors. This book is definitely a winner in my opinion.

Although not a western like the other two books (and I love westerns), “The Promise of Breeze Hill” has  a southern setting in Mississippi near Natchez Trace. As a lifetime rural Tennessee girl, I am also quite fond of Southern novels so the book had a lot in its favor before I even opened its pages.

“The Promise of Breeze Hill” is one of the best novels in its genre that I have ever been blessed to read. Connor is a hero who is easy to love and Isabella is an admirable heroine. Their love story is not an instant one but one that grows gradually through mutual respect. I liked how Connor was portrayed with integrity and bravery while he was looked down upon by others and how one character in particular was actually not the grand person he pretended to be.

I really loved this book and look forward to the rest of the series. I am ready for it NOW!

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by The Tyndale Blog Network. A favorable review was not required. All views expressed are my own.



ABOUT THE BOOK:

Natchez, MS; 1791

Anxious for his brothers to join him on the rugged frontier along the Mississippi River, Connor O’Shea has no choice but to indenture himself as a carpenter in exchange for their passage from Ireland. But when he’s sold to Isabella Bartholomew of Breeze Hill Plantation, Connor fears he’ll repeat past mistakes and vows not to be tempted by the lovely lady.

The responsibilities of running Breeze Hill have fallen on Isabella’s shoulders after her brother was found dead in the swamps along the Natchez Trace and a suspicious fire devastated their crops, almost destroyed their home, and left her father seriously injured. Even with Connor’s help, Isabella fears she’ll lose her family’s plantation. Despite her growing feelings for the handsome Irish carpenter, she seriously considers accepting her wealthy and influential neighbor’s proposal of marriage.

Soon, though, Connor realizes someone is out to eliminate the Bartholomew family. Can he set aside his own feelings to keep Isabella safe?

Read an excerpt HERE.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

CBA Bestselling author PAM HILLMAN was born and raised on a dairy farm in Mississippi and spent her teenage years perched on the seat of a tractor raking hay. In those days, her daddy couldn’t afford two cab tractors with air conditioning and a radio, so Pam drove an Allis Chalmers 110. Even when her daddy asked her if she wanted to bale hay, she told him she didn’t mind raking. Raking hay doesn’t take much thought so Pam spent her time working on her tan and making up stories in her head. Now, that’s the kind of life every girl should dream of.

www.pamhillman.com

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The Sweet Smell of Magnolias and Memories by Celeste Fletcher McHale



MY REVIEW:

“The Sweet Smell of Magnolias and Memories” is the first book I have read by Celeste Fletcher McHale. If it is a true sample of her other books, it will definitely not be the last one.

A contemporary love story, the novel is populated with well-defined and likeable characters, the kind of people for whom you want all the best. Situations throughout the story are true-to-life and easy to identify with. I particularly like the way Jacey and Colin’s relationship developed and how Jacey was emotionally healed as she found faith in Christ.

“The Sweet Smell of Magnolias and Memories” is the story of two people who met and fell in love quickly during a tremendously traumatic emergency then lost touch for over a year. Meeting unexpectedly once again, both Jacey and Colin must get to know each other under “normal” conditions and Jacey is convinced she was mistaken in her feelings for Colin. This story is filled with drama, humor, romance, and numerous twists that kept me happily reading. I look forward to reading more by this author.

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book that was provided by Amazon Vine. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.



ABOUT THE BOOK:

“There’s no time,” Colin said. “You have to go. Find me, call me . . .”

Jacey and Colin shared the three most intense days of their lives together, waiting for help as Mississippi floodwaters surrounded them. Jacey knew Colin was the love of her life—until her rescue boat went under water, along with Colin’s last name and pieces of Jacey’s memory.

The last thing she remembered was being submerged in water. Again.

As Jacey walks down the aisle as the maid of honor in her friend’s wedding a year later, the last person she expects to see is Colin. The biggest surprise, though, is that the man of her dreams is not wearing jeans and flip-flops as he did when he held her through those long nights of the flood. He’s the preacher.

As Jacey’s memories come flooding back, it’s almost more than she can take. The fate of the young family trapped with them haunts her. The unwavering honesty—and support—of her best friend Georgia forces her to take a fresh look at herself. She’s spent her life afraid of love. But this flood is opening Jacey’s heart in the most unexpected ways.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Celeste Fletcher McHale lives on her family farm in Central Louisiana where she enjoys raising a variety of animals. Her hobbies include writing, football, baseball, and spending much time with her grandchildren.

Website: fletchermchale.wordpress.com

Facebook: FletcherMcHale

Twitter: @FletcherMcHale

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Sunset in Old Savannah by Mary Ellis



MY REVIEW:

I have thoroughly enjoyed all of the previous books in the Mary Ellis Secrets of the South series so I was thrilled to have the chance to review “Sunset in Old Savannah”. As a lifetime southern gal, I love reading books about my part of the world, especially mysteries and suspense so this book was especially welcome.

Readers who got to know Michael and Elizabeth in the previous novel “Magnolia Moonlight” should be familiar with the tension between the two of them and might well wonder how an assignment working together in Savannah will turn out. What begins as routine surveillance turns into a murder mystery that Michael and Elizabeth just can’t ignore. What fun to follow them on their investigation as one secret after another is revealed. And could their animosity possibly change into affection?

The plot of  “Magnolia Moonlight” moves along at a steady clip with plenty of twists and surprises that kept me guessing nearly until the end. Strong characters and excellent dialogue kept things moving right along.  A secondary mystery involving a newly introduced character added depth to the story and left me anticipating the next book in the series (I hope!).

I love this series so much that I would be happy if it continues for several more volumes. I don’t think I could possibly grow bored with it. I hope you’re listening Mary Ellis!

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book that was provided by Harvest House. A favorable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.



ABOUT THE BOOK:

In Savannah, Everyone Has Something to Hide

When socialite Evelyn Doyle hires investigative partners and best friends Michael Preston and Elizabeth Kirby to do some routine surveillance on her wayward husband, the detective duo find themselves embroiled in a mystery that leaves them in this beautiful, historic city longer than they had expected.

Evelyn’s husband turns up dead, leaving her as the police chief’s prime target. The investigation reveals a hodgepodge of potential murderers, including a scheming business partner, a resentful mistress, and a ne’er-do-well brother. It’s up to Mike and Beth to follow the trail of secrets that reaches further than the branches of the moss-draped oaks of Savannah.

As praise of the agency gets around town, business is growing for Price Investigations. When Mike and Beth hire Kaitlyn Webb, Savannah’s newest transplant, their workload eases, but will the ghosts of her past threaten everyone’s safety before a killer can be put behind bars? And can Mike and Beth find love as their friendship and faith are put to the test?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Mary Ellis is the bestselling author of many books, including A Widow’s Hope, An Amish Family Reunion, and Living in Harmony. She and her husband live in central Ohio, where they try to live a simpler style of life.

www.maryellis.net

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The Magnolia Duchess by Beth White

Magnolia Duchess



MY REVIEW:

As a lifetime southerner, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading about some of our history in Beth White’s Gulf Coast Chronicles. For some reason, that history was severely neglected during my school years. “The Magnolia Duchess” takes the reader to the southern coast during the War of 1812, particularly during the Battle of New Orleans. I couldn’t help but recall that beloved song by Johnny Horton from my childhood –

“We fired our guns and the British kept a-comin’
There wasn’t nigh as many as there was a while ago
We fired once more and they begin to runnin’
On down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico”

Sorry, couldn’t help myself. What self-respecting southern child (or grownup for that matter) wouldn’t love a rousing song with lyrics like that? After reading Beth White’s account of the battle, the song made so much more sense.

Back to the book. I have loved reading about the Lanier family and their life on the Gulf Coast. As the female protagonist, Fiona was a strong young woman driven by compassion whose first response was to care for others whether friend or foe. I liked how conflicted she was about keeping Charlie’s identity secret from her family and how she tried to do the right thing despite how it affected herself.  I liked Charlie a lot too. I had to admire his determination to fulfill his commitments but at the same time I was frustrated by his decisions.

Once again, Beth White captured my imagination and interest to the point I had difficulty taking care of everyday chores. I hate to see this series end but am in hopes the author will see fit to provide her readers with more southern fiction.

A copy of this book was provided for review by
Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.



ABOUT THE BOOK:

As the War of 1812 rages across the newly formed United States, another war rages in Fiona Lanier’s heart–one that threatens to tear her family apart.

Fiona can scarcely take in the news of her brother’s capture and imprisonment by the British Navy. It is almost as unbelievable as the half-drowned British sailor who is washed ashore on the beach of Navy Cove.

Charlie Kincaid claims to have no memory of his life before being discovered by Fiona, but in a world that seems saturated with treachery, she cannot be sure he is telling the truth.
As Charlie’s memory returns in agonizing jags and crashes, he and Fiona discover that falling in love may be as inevitable as the tide. But when political allegiances collide, they’ll each have to decide where their true loyalty lies.

Read an excerpt from The Magnolia Duchess HERE.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Beth WhiteBeth White‘s day job is teaching music at an inner-city high school in historic Mobile, Alabama. A native Mississippian, she writes historical romance with a Southern drawl and is the author of The Pelican Bride and The Creole Princess. Her novels have won the American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award, the RT Book Club Reviewers’ Choice Award, and the Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award. Learn more at www.bethwhite.net.

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