A Passionate Hope by Jill Eileen Smith

Title: A Passionate Hope: Hannah’s Story

Author: Jill Eileen Smith

Series: Daughters of the Promised Land, #4

Genre: Biblical Fiction

Era: Biblical (Hannah, mother of Samuel)

Publisher: Revell Books

Source: from Netgalley (in exchange for honest review)

Overall Rating: 4.5/5 stars

A Passionate Hope by Jill Eileen Smith

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Hannah and her husband, Elkanah, share a deep and abiding love, for each other, for their God, and for his tabernacle at Shiloh. Greatly disturbed by the corruption of the priests, they long for restoration and pray for a deliverer. But nothing changes as the years pass. Years that also reveal Hannah to be barren.

Pressured by his family to take another wife, Elkanah marries Peninnah, who quickly begins to bear children. Disgraced and taunted by her husband’s new wife, Hannah turns again to prayers that seem doomed to go unanswered. Do her devotion and kindness in the face of Peninnah’s cruelty count for nothing? Why does God remain silent and indifferent to her pleas?

Travel back to the dusty streets of Shiloh with an expert guide as Jill Eileen Smith brings to life a beloved story of hope, patience, and deliverance that shows that even the most broken of relationships can be restored.

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The Sea Before Us by Sarah Sundin

Title: The Sea Before Us

Author: Sarah Sundin

Series: Sunrise at Normandy, #1

Genre: Christian Historical Romance (WW2)

Era: 1944 (WW2)

Setting: London, England (prologue set in Texas) with a bit in Edinburgh, Scotland (!!!)

Publisher: Revell

Source: from Netgalley (in exchange for an honest review)

Time Taken to Read: under two days

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars (+!)

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Heiress by Susan May Warren

Title: Heiress

Author: Susan May Warren

Series: Daughters of Fortune, #1

Genre: Historical Romance with Christian themes

Era: 1890s through 1918 (Gilded Age/Edwardian/WW1)

Setting: New York, Montana

Publisher: Summerside Press

Source: bought myself a copy

Time Taken to Read: about two days

Overall Rating: 3.5/5 stars (at least a star removed for content)

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Are Novels Important?

Are Novels Important_

I’ve heard people say that reading fictional stories is a waste of time, and I wanted to point out why this is not true.

However, it was simply too big a subject for me! Books have taught me certain lessons … but they’ve taught other people completely different things. And I hate to narrow this broad subject down to just my opinions and experiences!

So, through Google Forms, I asked a variety of readers from social media the following questions: What does reading mean to you? How have novels helped you in your life? Why are they worth something to you?

Here are their responses.

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A Heart Most Worthy by Siri Mitchell

Title: A Heart Most Worthy

Author: Siri Mitchell

Series: Against All Expectations, #4 (is meant to be a standalone)

Genre: Historical Romance with Christian undertones

Era: 1918 (WW1)

Setting: Boston, United States

Publisher: Bethany House

Source: bought myself a copy at the local library

Time Taken to Read: about three days

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars

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White Wolf and the Ash Princess by Tammy Lash (Blog Tour)

Blog Tour Banner Final

Title: White Wolf and the Ash Princess

Author: Tammy Lash

Series: White Wolf, #1

Genre: Fantasy Adventure/Christian/Historical (I know …)

Setting:

Publisher: Tammy Lash

Source: from author (in exchange for honest review)

Overall Rating: 3.5/5 stars

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The Mayflower Bride by Kimberly Woodhouse

Title: The Mayflower Bride

Author: Kimberly Woodhouse

Series: Daughters of the Mayflower, #1

Genre: Historical/Christian Romance

Era: 1620s (Pilgrims)

Setting: England and then New England, 1620

Publisher: Barbour Books

Source: from NetGalley (in exchange for honest review)

Time Taken to Read: seven days (during NaNoWriMo, too!)

Overall Rating: 4.5/5 stars

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Disowned by Sarah Addison-Fox (Blog Tour)

AllegianceBlogTour

Title: Disowned

Author: Sarah Addison-Fox

Series: Allegiance, #1

Genre: Christian Fantasy Adventure (though I’d say more dystopia but in a fantasy world and with slightly less drama)

Setting: Etraea and Kyraenea, both countries in a made-up world. Non-magical.

Publisher: Sarah Addison-Fox

Source: from author (in exchange for honest review)

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

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Swazi Sunrise by Donna Chapman Gilbert

Title: Swazi Sunrise

Author: Donna Chapman Gilbert

Genre: Christian Nonfiction/Biography (missionaries)

Era: early 1900s (1907 through the early 1920s)

Setting: New York, then Africa

Publisher: Donna Chapman Gilbert

Source: from author (in exchange for honest review)

Overall Rating: 4/5 stars

Swazi Sunrise by Donna Chapman Gilbert

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19-year-old Lula is bookish and shy. She longs for a husband and children of her own, but gives up that dream to become a missionary. Lula never imagined the life of hair-raising adventure that awaits her. Nor does she expect to meet the most thrilling adventure of all in the form of a handsome young preacher.

Harmon leaves his home in Ohio with only goal in mind—converting Africans to Christ. No one is going to stand in his way. Not even a little brown-eyed slip of a girl with a sweet smile.

Young Emely lives in fear of the snake spirits and the witchdoctor who summons them. Then she encounters a pale man who tells her she can be free from fear. Will she find the courage to defy the witchdoctor and grab hold of that freedom?

Kosa loses his standing as a Swazi prince due to the conniving of his hateful younger brother. To regain his honor and his father’s respect, he trains hard to become a renowned fighter. But he discovers that fame and fortune do nothing to bring peace to his tortured soul.

Swazi Sunrise is a safari ride into early 20th century Africa. Its vivid depiction of life in Swaziland and the trials and triumphs of pioneer missionaries makes for a highly satisfying read.

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Cries of Grace by Angela Beach Silverthorne

Title: Cries of Grace

Author: Angela Beach Silverthorne

Series: Cries, Book 2

Genre: Christian Contemporary

Setting: United States

Publisher: Angela Beach Silverthorne

Source: from the author (in exchange for honest review)

Overall Rating: 2/5 stars

Cries of Grace by Angela Beach Silverthorne

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The Haven has enjoyed five years of peace after a brutal demonic assault. The land has flourished. People have moved on, reaping a treasure house of blessings and getting comfortable and complacent.

Bren has been away for five years. Now she heads home with a Master’s degree in nursing, hoping to follow her grandmother’s passion as a midwife. Going home holds deep-rooted issues. She must face the death of her grandmother, her father’s involvement in demonic activity, and bitter disappointments.

Going home also means seeing Joseph. Through brief visits, phone calls, and letters, Bren has fallen in love with Joseph. She is indebted to him for helping restore The Haven to its former glory, but she wants more. She wants her love reciprocated to the fullest.
Going home might mean more hurt, more brokenness, but it also might mean love and passion, sharing a future with the man of her dreams.

Cries of Grace weaves a beautiful tale of romance, redemption, faith, and trust, but in the background things are shifting—mistrust, deceit, and corruption begin to slip in and insidiously corrode hope.

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