An Unlikely Blessing

I originally reviewed “An Unlikely Blessing” on February 14, 2011. You can read my complete original review HERE.  I have included an excerpt of that review below.

“An Unlikely Blessing” has the same down home, character driven plot that kept folks reading Jan Karon’s Mitford series and Philip Gulley’s Harmony novels. I have read several books from both of those series and for my own personal preferences, “An Unlikely Blessing” takes first place. It is a heartwarming story with such real characters that I wanted to move right into Hilltop myself. Lots of humor, a bit of action, and just good storytelling makes “An Unlikely Blessing a keeper”. Read the book description below for everything you need to know without my throwing a spoiler into the works.

What can I say? I loved “An Unlikely Blessing” and can’t wait for the next installment so I can find out what is going on with Pastor Alex and his flock.

Surprising Grace

Well, it has been a bit over a year but I finally got to catch up with Pastor Alex and those dear folks of Hilltop. The same blend of good storytelling, humor, and wisdom was again evident in this second installment of Baer’s Hilltop series. Alex has begun to settle well into small town/rural life and realizes that he has never been happier. It has become evident both to him and the community that he is right where God wants him to be. New characters, a little romance, more humor, a bit of mystery, drama, and action plus some sad moments work together well to make “Surprising Grace” another endearing novel. I sincerely hope that future installments are planned. There are still too many unfinished stories in Hilltop that I want to read about.

This book was provided for review by LitFuse Publicity.


The charming and often hilarious Forever Hilltop series follows the experiences of former city dweller Alex Armstrong as he settles into his new role as pastor of a Scandinavian community in rural North Dakota. Alex is sometimes baffled by his parishioners and their colorful ways, but he comes to appreciate their simple wisdom. One thing’s for sure — life in Hilltop Township is never dull! This new two-in-one format features An Unlikely Blessing along with its sequel, Surprising Grace.

An Unlikely Blessing

Meet Alex Armstrong, former city dweller who has just accepted his first parish assignment to a small community in the wilds of North Dakota. In Hilltop Township, Alex becomes familiar with the colorful residents and their odd traditions, from rommegrot to lutefisk. And then there’s the excitement the single pastor creates among the unmarried women in the community! Alex soon discovers that his new church home has as much to teach him as he has to teach them, providing all with An Unlikely Blessing.

Surprising Grace

Alex Armstrong is settling into his new role as pastor of Hilltop Church, and he’s even starting to understand the strange ways of the people who populate this barren stretch of North Dakota prairie. But he also finds that his flock needs help and counsel like he never imagined. In this cozy and entertaining read, Alex must choose between the woman he once planned to marry—and the home he’s come to love.

Romantic Times says of Forever Hilltop, “These two stories in one volume feature amazing characters – some are witting and some are quirky, but all of them are loveable and memorable. The small town comes to life and will remain with readers for a long time. Baer knows what her fans look for in a feel-good book and does not disappoint in either story.”

Read what other bloggers are saying about Forever Hilltop HERE.


Judy Baer was born and grew up on a farm on the prairies of North Dakota, experiencing many of the same things as her Hilltop characters. An only child, she spent most of her days with imaginary people-either those she read about or those she made up in her head.Baer graduated from Concordia College with majors in English and education and a minor in religion. While at the time, she was simply studying what interested her, Baer later realized that she was educating herself for her future career as a Christian writer. She certainly put her education to use as she is the author of more than 75 books.

A certified professional life coach now certified in three coaching disciplines, Baer coaches primarily professional and aspiring writers. She is also a faculty adviser in the Department of Human Development at St. Mary’s University in Minneapolis, MN. Baer has two daughters and three step children. She and her husband live in Minnesota.She invites you to visit her at her web site for more information on her and her books.


Celebrate with Judy by entering to win a Kindle for you and a friend!One grand prize winner will receive:

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  • Forever Hilltop by Judy K Baer for you and a one for a friend

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