Oh. My. Goodness. I have been a Susan May Warren fan from the very first book that I read of hers but this one is beyond them all. Heiress just confirms to me that Susan may be one of the most versatile authors I’ve read. From sweet romance to humor to intense suspense to gripping historical novels, everything this author has written has made me want more. I made myself wait to read Heiress until my earlier review obligations were met and can say it was definitely worth the wait.
A story that begins in New York City during what is known as “The Gilded Age”, Heiress features sisters Esme and Jinx, daughters of a prominent newspaper publisher. In a world filled with glamorous clothing and fabulous balls, it is their duty to marry well and enhance the family’s position in society. Jinx eagerly awaits her chance to participate in the societal rituals involved in finding a husband. Unfortunately she must wait until older sister Esme has married before her father will allow it – and Esme has no desire to marry the man chosen for her. At this juncture, choices are made by both young women that will affect their lives forever.
The story takes the reader from the mansions of New York to a small frontier town in Montana and spans over a decade in time. A dramatic and emotional tale, the plot is filled with unexpected twists. Just when things seem to be the most hopeless, something will happen that brings light. On the other hand, just when you think one of the women will finally find happiness, something else will happen that will set her back. This is one book that will keep the reader in suspense until the very end because there is absolutely NO way to guess how everything will be resolved.
Heiress is a bold story that touches on some ugly facts of life such as rebellion, adultery, domestic abuse, lies, and betrayal. It illustrates how a person without Christ can be held prisoner by success, wealth, and power. It is ultimately a powerful account of the potential high cost one must pay for choices made.
This book was provided for review by LitFuse Publicity.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
They can buy anything they want—fame, power, beauty, even loyalty.
But they can’t buy love.
The beautiful and wealthy heiress daughters of August Price can buy everything their hearts desire. But what if their desire is to be loved, without an enormous price tag attached? When one sister betrays another for the sake of love, will she find happiness? And what happens when the other sets out across the still untamed frontier to find it—will she discover she’s left it behind in the glamorous world of the New York gilded society? What price will each woman pay for being an heiress?
Set in the opulent world of the Gilded Age, two women discover that being an heiress just might cost them everything they love.
Read an excerpt HERE.
Purchase a copy of Heiress HERE.
Find out what the reviewers are saying here!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Susan May Warren is an award-winning, best-selling author of over twenty-five novels, many of which have won the Inspirational Readers Choice Award, the ACFW Book of the Year award, the Rita Award, and have been Christy finalists. After serving as a missionary for eight years in Russia, Susan returned home to a small town on Minnesota’s beautiful Lake Superior shore where she, her four children, and her husband are active in their local church.
Susan’s larger than life characters and layered plots have won her acclaim with readers and reviewers alike. A seasoned women’s events and retreats speaker, she’s a popular writing teacher at conferences around the nation and the author of the beginning writer’s workbook: From the Inside-Out: discover, create and publish the novel in you!. She is also the founder of www.MyBookTherapy.com, a story-crafting service that helps authors discover their voice.
Susan makes her home in northern Minnesota, where she is busy cheering on her two sons in football, and her daughter in local theater productions (and desperately missing her college-age son!)
A full listing of her titles, reviews and awards can be found at Susan’s website.
Heiress, a richly complex historical romance, is the first in Susan’s three book Daughters of Fortune series. In honor of Heiress’ debut, Susan is hosting a FABULOUS Gilded Age Giveaway and giving away an opulent prize pack fit for an heiress!
One grand prize winner will receive:
- A $100 gift certificate to ModCloth.com
- A sleek silver iPod™ Shuffle
- A beautiful strand of Pearls
- Titanic DVD
- Speakeasy Compilation Music CD from Starbucks™
- Heiress by Susan May Warren
Click one of the icons below to enter. But do so soon – this giveaway ends 10/5/11. The winner will be announced Thursday, October 6 on Susan’s Blog.
Healing Hearts contains three previously published novellas by Beth Wiseman. Although the three stories are contained in one volume, each one stands alone and is not directly related to the others. Each of the stories features Amish couples in various stages of life. Themes of acceptance and forgiveness run through the stories that also give the reader an inside look at life among the Amish. Each of these novellas can easily be read in one sitting and are an excellent afternoon escape.
In Healing Hearts, Levina and her husband Naaman have been married thirty years when he leaves and does not return for a year. The story begins with Naaman’s return and the adjustments Levina and her grown children are forced to make – including the choice of whether to forgive his desertion of his family.
A Change of Heart features the youngest couple of the three stories. Leah loves to write stories and has no interest in the everyday chores that most young Amish girls learn in preparation to be a wife and mother. In fact, almost everything she tries, ends up with disastrous results. Her sister sneakily sets her up with her fiance’s brother Aaron against her wishes. Leah fights the attraction but Aaron’s unique ability to accept her as she is is almost irresistible.
A Choice to Forgive is about Lydia who has been widowed after fifteen years of marriage to Elam. When Elam’s brother Daniel, Lydia’s first love, returns after Elam’s death and wants to once again be a part of her life, she is reluctant to subject herself to the possibility of more pain.
This book was provided for review by the Amazon Vine Program.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Three hope-filled stories about second chances, trusting your heart, and the power of forgiveness.
Healing Hearts: Empty-nesters Levina Lapp and her husband Naaman have no children under their roof for the first time in 30 years. When Naaman leaves to visit cousins in Ohio, Levina never expected him to be gone a year. Now that he’s back, will they be able to move beyond this estrangement and rekindle the fire of the love they once shared?
A Change of Heart: Leah is a writer in a community that does not encourage such fruitless endeavors. She lacks the skills necessary to be a good Amish fraa-cooking, cleaning, quilting, and gardening. Aaron is aware of Leah’s short-comings, but his heart is captured by this spirited young woman. Will Leah’s role as an Amish wife and mother force her to set aside her creative life-or will Aaron make an offer she never dreamed was possible?
A Choice to Forgive: Lydia has loved two men in her life. Daniel, who disappeared one Christmas Eve long ago, leaving only a note saying he wanted to live in the Englisch world. And Elam, Daniel’s brother, to whom she had been happily married for 15 years. When Elam dies, Lydia gives up on ever loving again. But she is shocked when Daniel wants to return to the Order and her life. Is there enough forgiveness in her heart to overlook the past and move into a future that could fulfill her dreams?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Beth is the best-selling author of the Daughters of the Promise series — Plain Perfect, Plain Pursuit, Plain Promise, Plain Paradise and Plain Proposal. Her new series–Land of Canaan– debuted in the fall of 2010 with Seek Me With All Your Heart which has been selected as the 2011 Women of Faith Novel of the Year. She is contracted with Thomas Nelson Publishing and is currently working on her first non-Amish novel due for release in the spring of 2012. All of her books have held spots on both the CBA (Christian Book Association) bestseller list and the ECPA (Evangelical Christian Publishers Association) bestseller list.
As she puts it, her writing has been “all over the place.” As a former newspaper reporter, she was honored by her peers with eleven journalism awards, including first place news writing for The Texas Press Association. She has been a humor columnist for The 1960 Sun in Houston and published articles in various publications. Those articles included a wide array of topics – an article on premature birth, an article about performance boating, and an article about her mother–a whitewater canoeing enthusiast who still paddles the rivers at the age of 77. However, writing novels is where her heart is. She left her job as a journalist in 2008 to write novels full-time.
“Writing about the Amish lifestyle within fictional love stories has been a wonderful experience,” Beth says. “The Amish and Mennonite contacts I have established in Pennsylvania and Colorado help me to keep the books authentic. These very private people might dress differently, avoid the use of electricity and modern conveniences, but they are just like everyone else. They love, hurt, have daily challenges and struggles, and strive to be the best they can be. An often misunderstood sect of people, it has been a privilege to learn about their ways.”
Just when you think you’ve read about all the mail-order bride stories that could possibly be written, Maggie Brendan releases another one. Set in the growing city of Cheyenne, Wyoming, Deeply Devoted features Catharine, a young woman who has fallen in love with Peter through their six-month correspondence. The story begins when Catharine arrives from Amsterdam for her wedding unexpectedly accompanied by her two younger sisters. And that is just one of the secrets she has hidden from her new husband-to-be. Like a good sport, Peter manages to overcome his shock and proceeds to marry Catharine anyway, even when his own mother attempts to stop the wedding. During the following weeks, the newlyweds experience many ups and downs, challenges, and surprises – some that even threaten their marriage and their future.
Deeply Devoted is another fine example of why Maggie Brendan has found her place as one of my must-read authors. The story was easy to read and I finished it in less than a day. Characters are well-developed and even the primary characters have flaws. One particularly obnoxious character actually ended up with a few redeeming qualities by the end of the book.The plot is perfectly paced and the novel background has been well researched. Afirm reliance on God is a prevalent theme without being heavy handed.
For anyone who enjoys romantic historical westerns, particularly those that feature mail-order brides, Deeply Devoted would be a perfect choice.
This book was provided for review by
Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
European Mail-Order Bride Finds Love Against All Odds
Acclaimed romance writer Maggie Brendan’s latest offering from the “Blue Willow Bride” series, Deeply Devoted (ISBN: 978-0-8007-3462-6, $14.99, 336 pages, September), introduces readers to Catharine Olsen, a mail-order bride arriving in America from Holland. She carries not only the anticipation of her marriage to Peter Andersen but also the residual pain of a tragic past, her mother’s Blue Willow china, and has her two younger sisters in tow. The fact is, in Wyoming, the single men outnumber the women five to one, so Catharine’s surpassing beauty and willing spirit are priceless gifts for Peter.
In spite of initial culture shock and necessary adjustments, Catharine finds a love with Peter that enraptures both her heart and mind. She is greatly troubled by Peter’s mother’s endeavors to sabotage their precious marriage. Catharine becomes terrified that her haunting past will be discovered, as the story unfolds with tremendous detail and extraordinary characterization.
Brendan’s previous work has received high rankings and praise in the Romantic Times, and she has also received the Atlanta Persistence Award from the American Christian Writers. Author Julie Lessman commented, “Maggie Brendan’s gentle style of prairie romance is reminiscent of Janette Oke, capturing the heart of both the Old West and the reader with romance that will make you sigh.”
Deeply Devoted is sure to captivate readers with its page-turning thrills and the hope of a deeply redemptive story.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Maggie Brendan is a member of the American Christian Writers (ACW), American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and Romance Writers of America (RWA). She was a recipient of the 2004 ACW Persistence Award in Atlanta, GA.
Maggie can be found on her blog, http://SouthernBelleWriter.blogspot.com and is a resident blogger on http://BustlesAndSpurs.com. Her book, No Place For a Lady, the first in the Heart of the West series received a 4.5 star review from Romantic Times. The Jewel of His Heart, book two, received a 4 star review from Romantic Times. A Love of Her Own will release was released June 1st. She has begun writing another historical series called The Blue Willow Brides. Maggie was quoted in, Word Weavers, The Successful Writer’s Critique Groups. She led a writer’s critique group for six years.
A TV film version of No Place for a Lady is currently in development for possible movie production. She recently spoke at a Regional Church Bookstores and Libraries conference in Marietta about The Value of Christian Fiction. She has participated in three of LifeWay Christian Store’s Annual Fiction Event Day. She recently had a book signing at the Southern Baptist Convention in Orlando on June 2010.
Maggie is married with two grown children and four grandchildren. She has a love for the West and all things western. When she is not writing, she enjoys reading, singing, painting, scrapbooking and being with her family. She lives in Marietta, GA.
This week, theChristian Fiction Blog Allianceis introducingCaptive TrailMoody Publishers (September 1, 2011)bySusan Page DavisABOUT THE AUTHOR:
From Susan: I’ve always loved reading, history, and horses. These things come together in several of my historical books. My young adult novel, Sarah’s Long Ride, also spotlights horses and the rugged sport of endurance riding, as does the contemporary romance Trail to Justice. I took a vocational course in horseshoeing after earning a bachelor’s degree in history. I don’t shoe horses anymore, but the experience has come in handy in writing my books.
Another longtime hobby of mine is genealogy, which has led me down many fascinating paths. I’m proud to be a DAR member! Some of Jim’s and my quirkier ancestors have inspired fictional characters.
For many years I worked for the Central Maine Morning Sentinel as a freelancer, covering local government, school board meetings, business news, fires, auto accidents, and other local events, including a murder trial. I’ve also written many profiles and features for the newspaper and its special sections. This experience was a great help in developing fictional characters and writing realistic scenes. I also published nonfiction articles in several magazines and had several short stories appear in Woman’s World, Grit, and Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine.
My husband, Jim, and I moved to his birth state, Oregon, for a while after we were married, but decided to move back to Maine and be near my family. We’re so glad we did. It allowed our six children to grow up feeling close to their cousins and grandparents, and some of Jim’s family have even moved to Maine!
Our children are all home-schooled. The two youngest are still learning at home. Jim recently retired from his vocation as an editor at a daily newspaper, and we’ve moved from Maine to Kentucky.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Captive Trail is second in a six-book series about four generations of the Morgan family living, fighting, and thriving amidst a turbulent Texas history spanning from 1845 to 1896. Although a series, each book can be read on its own.
Taabe Waipu has run away from her Comanche village and is fleeing south in Texas on a horse she stole from a dowry left outside her family’s teepee. The horse has an accident and she is left on foot, injured and exhausted. She staggers onto a road near Fort Chadbourne and collapses.
On one of the first runs through Texas, Butterfield Overland Mail Company driver Ned Bright carries two Ursuline nuns returning to their mission station. They come across a woman who is nearly dead from exposure and dehydration and take her to the mission.
With some detective work, Ned discovers Taabe Waipu identity. He plans to unite her with her family, but the Comanche have other ideas, and the two end up defending the mission station. Through Taabe and Ned we learn the true meaning of healing and restoration amid seemingly powerless situations.
If you would like to read the first chapter of Captive Trail, go HERE.
Learn more about Susan and her books on her Website.
Although Captive Trail is the second installment of The Texas Trail series, I had no problem at all keeping up with the characters. In fact, this novel qualifies so well as a stand-alone, I didn’t even know it wasn’t the first of the series until I had finished reading it.
Primary characters are Taabe Waipu, a young white woman who has been held captive by the Comanches for twelve years before her escape and Ned Bright, the stage driver who rescued her after an accident that left her incapacitated. Taabe Waipu remembers very little of her life before her capture and has even forgotten the English language but she has never given up hope of finding her true family. Her lengthy stay with a small group of Ursuline nuns begins her healing, not only in body but in mind and spirit also. Ned’s friendship with Taabe blossoms into a growing affection and although he knows he could lose her, he never gives up searching for her family.
Captive Trail is a well-written and researched novel with a perfectly paced plot, interesting characters, and just the right amount of drama, humor, and romance. If you enjoy historical westerns, Captive Trail may be something you would enjoy.
MY REVIEW: I’ve often heard the old axiom about getting “more bang for the buck”. A Heart Revealed is definitely a good example of that. First of all, the book itself is at least two hundred pages longer than most of the novels I read. Then, although the primary characters of the story are Emma Malloy and Sean O’Connor, the reader is also treated to the ongoing drama of the members of the O’Connor family who have been featured in the earlier novels of both The Daughters of Boston and the Winds of Change series.
A Heart Revealed is going to be a bit difficult for me to review without any spoilers but I shall give it a try. It should be fairly obvious that since this story features Emma and Sean, a romance between them will develop. It was evident that the two of them shared a platonic affection but the story was well advanced before either realized that their feelings were even stronger. Then there was the fact that Emma was already married. How would she and Sean overcome that obstacle? Well, I can say that my speculations were totally off track and there were several surprises in store before the book ended.
I have read every book in both of Lessman’s series and I think that A Heart Revealed has to be my favorite of them all. Julie’s skill with character and plot development has just improved with each book even though it has been excellent from the beginning. I admit that there were a few times that I became impatient with the length of the book but I believe that was more because I was trying to meet a deadline for this review. If I had been able to read it at my leisure, I would have savored it more. As in the previous books, A Heart Revealed is an honest portrayal of real life with all its best and worst and the human emotions and actions that keep it interesting. Woven throughout the narrative is one of the strongest messages of faith that I have encountered but it seems to be a natural part of the story.
If you haven’t discovered Julie Lessman’s books yet, you are missing a treat. I strongly recommend A Heart Revealed as well as her previous novels.
This book was provided for review by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
She Left Ireland And A Man Who Broke Her Heart… Only To Find An American Who Could Restore It.
Julie Lessman’s new novel A Heart Revealed (ISBN: 978-0-8007-3416-9, $14.99, 512 pages, September), the second offering in the “Winds of Change” series, opens in Boston in 1931, where thirty-one-year-old Emma Malloy has fled from an abusive marriage in Ireland. Although her former husband has left her haunted and deeply scarred. Emma cannot help but develop strong feelings for her friend Charity’s brother, Sean O’Connor. Described by his sister as very stubborn, Sean maintains that he is not the marrying kind. But as he and Emma draw closer and closer, will her strong, tender heart ensnare him and change his mind?
Transporting readers back to a time when the Empire State Building was brand new and the local speakeasy was a common destination, Lessman outlines the fascinating era and its citizens with deft precision. Lessman, who has been hailed as a writer with noteworthy skill by Publishers Weekly has once again delivered an epic tale featuring vibrant characterization, wonderful thrills, sharp dialogue, and surprises both large and small.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Julie Lessman is an award-winning author whose books give readers “Passion With a Purpose,” underscoring her intense passion for both God and romance. Julie is the recipient of 13 Romance Writers of America awards and was chosen as #1 Romance Fiction Author of the Year in the Family Fiction magazine 2011 Readers Choice Awards. She was the winner of the 2009 ACFW Debut Author of the Year and Holt Medallion Awards of Merit for Best First Book and Long Inspirational. She resides in Missouri with her husband, daughter, son and daughter-in-law and is the author of “The Daughters of Boston” series, which includes A Passion Most Pure, A Passion Redeemed, and A Passion Denied. Her “Winds of Change” series has recently released with A Hope Undaunted, which ranked #5 on Booklist’s Top 10 Inspirational Fiction for 2010. You can contact Julie through her website at www.julielessman.com.