Monthly Archives: March 2014

Announcing A Beauty So Rare by Tamera Alexander!

Tamera Alexander’s novels never disappoint, and her exciting new novel, A Beauty So Rare, is no exception.  This book is to be released in late April, but you can find an excerpt and video from Bethany House Publishers below.  Do not miss the second stand alone novel in her Belmont Mansion series!

Excerpt

Pink is not what Eleanor Braddock ordered, but maybe it would soften the tempered steel of a woman who came through a war–and still had one to fight.

Plain, practical Eleanor Braddock knows she will never marry, but with a dying soldier’s last whisper, she believes her life can still have meaning and determines to find his widow. Impoverished and struggling to care for her ailing father, Eleanor arrives at Belmont Mansion, home of her aunt, Adelicia Acklen, the richest woman in America–and possibly the most demanding, as well. Adelicia insists on finding her niece a husband, but a simple act of kindness leads Eleanor down a far different path–building a home for destitute widows and fatherless children from the Civil War. While Eleanor knows her own heart, she also knows her aunt will never approve of this endeavor.

Archduke Marcus Gottfried has come to Nashville from Austria in search of a life he determines, instead of one determined for him. Hiding his royal heritage, Marcus longs to combine his passion for nature with his expertise in architecture, but his plans to incorporate natural beauty into the design of the widows’ and children’s home run contrary to Eleanor’s wishes. As work on the home draws them closer together, Marcus and Eleanor find common ground–and a love neither of them expects. But Marcus is not the man Adelicia has chosen for Eleanor, and even if he were, someone who knows his secrets is about to reveal them all.

 

Bethany House YouTube Promotional Video

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Where Courage Calls by Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan

In Where Courage Calls, Beth Thatcher leaves behind a comfortable life to move to a remote mining town in order to become a school teacher.  Coal Valley is rustic and Beth finds herself initially missing the conveniences of home, especially when a mishap leaves her without her carefully packed trunks.  However, as Beth settles into the small town, she is soon moved by the plights of her students.  Her gentle heart motivates her to provide for her students in new ways, to strive to eradicate prejudices between the miners and the town, and to integrate herself into their simple lifestyle.  The first half of the book moves slowly and other readers may also struggle to continue the story.  Unrealistically, Beth has almost no flaws, despite this adventure being completely outside of her comfort zone.  The second half of the novel does introduce a bit of mystery and suspense, but the little romance is forced and the story concludes with the reader desiring more.  It is a simple read with a predictable plot and the lack of depth causes the reader to feel disconnected and unsatisfied.  However, the main characters are sweet natured, and Christian messages are woven throughout to provide additional truths for the reader’s enjoyment.  This candid review is not meant to discourage readers who wish to enjoy a simple tale, or who may be admirers of Ms. Oke’s work, but the much too tidy storyline and shallow plot left this particular reader craving some realistic depth.

I received a copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

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