52 Books in 52 Weeks: “Summer of Promise”


Welcome to week 24 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks” series!  If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up!

I promise you I have been reading- I am just WAY behind on writing reviews!

This week I read Summer of Promise: A Novel (Westward Winds) by Amanda Cabot.  Some of you may remember I read her book “Paper Roses” earlier this year.

I was fully expecting to enjoy this book and really did.  Set in 1885 it’s during a time when the country was expanding out West rapidly and still reeling from the results of the Civil War.  It’s also set just a bit after Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman- one of my favorite television series so I like the time period.

The main character is Abigail Harding- a teacher in Vermont at a popular school.  Her sister, Charlotte, has married an officer in the military and moved to Wyoming.  As they exchange letters she begins to sense that her sister is no longer happy, though she doesn’t come right out and say it.  Since it is summer break Abigail begins the long journey by train and stagecoach to go visit.

On the last leg of the trip the stagecoach is attacked by bandits and Abigail meets Lieutenant Ethan Bowles- a fellow passenger who jumps up and saves them all from being hurt.  It turns out Ethan is stationed in the same location as her brother-in-law and sister so they develop a friendship.  Abigail is engaged to a fellow teacher back in Vermont but on arriving to see her frail and sickly sister she confirms she was correct to make the journey.

So while you have the blooming romances, conflicts between race, sister in law and brother in law arguments and the difficulties of just living in the West at that time you also have the underlying plot line of the stage coach robberies and who is masterminding them all.  It becomes clear inside information is being shared- the robbers always seem to know which coaches are the easy targets.

All in all it was a nice light read.  And everything gets wrapped up in a nice bow at the end!

  • Share This Post:
  • Share This Post on Facebook
  • Email this Post
  • Share this Post on Twitter
It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


52 Books in 52 Weeks: “The Pastor’s Wife” by Jennifer AILee


Welcome to week 23 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks” series!  If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up!

I promise you I have been reading- I am just WAY behind on writing reviews!

The book I read this week was The Pastor’s Wife by Jennifer AILee.

Maura Sullivan is a theater person who used to be a pastor’s wife in Granger, OH.  As can easily happen her husband got so caught up in the ministry of the church he ignored his wife so she left.  She is called back to a town for the reading of a will.  It turns out she was left the theater in town by an older woman who used to attend the church.

The catch- she and her husband (they never divorced) have to live together for six months before proper ownership will be transferred.  Additionally the theater must host one church event each year.  If they can complete the six months the church in addition will receive $10,000 for projects.

Reluctantly husband and wife agree to move back in together at the church parsonage and thus begin the strange journey.  The characters are delightful and include a wide range of church members.  As a Christian I found myself slipping easily into their world of youth ministry, deacons meetings and opening nights.

The author throws a wrench in the mix right about the time I figured the book was going to wrap up and I thought it made the ending even better.

If you are looking for some light reading and the religious undertones won’t bother you, check out The Pastor’s Wife!

  • Share This Post:
  • Share This Post on Facebook
  • Email this Post
  • Share this Post on Twitter
It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


52 Books in 52 Weeks “Wedded To The War”


Welcome to week 22 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks” series!  If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up!

I promise you I have been reading- I am just WAY behind on writing reviews!

One of the other books I read recently had a character that was a nurse during the Civil War.  She was treated HORRIBLY when she returned home from the war because as a woman she had “no right” to be around men who weren’t properly clothed or could possibly have bad thoughts as a result of seeing her while they were sick.  I thought surely the author had found a small segment of the population who believed that during the late 1800s.  How could anyone think it was disgraceful for someone to help the sick during a war?

But this past week I read Wedded to War (Heroines Behind the Lines) and discovered that this was in fact the norm.  The main character, Charlotte Waverly, is a wealthy New York Socialite who decides to leave the comfort of her family home and volunteer as a nurse for the Union during the Civil War.  The whole process of even being accepted was insane- the women had to be over 30, married and unattractive.  As a 28 year old single female she had to try to keep her head down and not draw attention to herself (she was not very good at this).

Even after completing her training she was treated as a second class citizen by the doctors in the field hospitals.  While men were dying around her the doctors would make her spend days cleaning bed pans or doing other tasks in an attempt to wear her out and try to get her to go home.  The conditions were deplorable making me wonder if we lost more men to illness in these wars than we did to bullets.

A secondary character in the book is Ruby- an Irish immigrant who came to the US to escape the death caused by the potato famine.  She has been reduced to living in Five Points- the largest slum in New York City.  She and Charlotte end up being friends through a strange series of events.

The book is yet another example in my country’s history when women were treated as second hand citizens at a time where their contributions were the difference between life and death for thousands of people.  In my modern view point it is almost impossible to imagine nurses overwhelmingly being male.  With both battlefield and hospital conditions being so horrible I would have thought the comforting expressions, beauty and organizational skills of women would have been welcomed.

Overall I thought the book was a good read.  At the time I am writing this the book is still available to be downloaded for free.  Since this is Amazon it won’t last long but maybe this will give you a chance to grab a good book at a great deal!

  • Share This Post:
  • Share This Post on Facebook
  • Email this Post
  • Share this Post on Twitter
It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


52 Books in 52 Weeks: “In The Presence Of My Enemies”


Welcome to week 21 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks” series!  If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up!

I promise you I have been reading- I am just WAY behind on writing reviews!

I openly wept while I was reading In the Presence of My Enemies.  So much so that my cat came out from her spot where she had been soundly sleeping to make sure I was okay.

In The Presence of My Enemies is the story of Martin and Gracia Burnham, who spent over 15 years of their lives as missionaries with New Tribes Missions.  They worked in the Philippines.  Martin was a pilot and flew supplies (such as medicine, food, schooling materials etc) to tribes who could not be reached by road.  He had the incredible ability to land his little planes on short runways surrounded by trees.  For many people he was a lifeline to letters from families in the states, medicine that saved lives and food.  His wife, Gracia, worked as a radio operator with Martin and other pilots.  She kept everyone organized in the sky.

To celebrate their wedding anniversary (she tells their love story in the book) they left their three children with trusted friends and rented a room for one evening at a resort in the Philippines.  Gracia states in the book that she thought about cancelling several times because the $200 for the evening was extravagant on their budget but she and Martin had spent so little time together between the children and their jobs they decided one night couldn’t hurt.

That night the resort was taken over by Abu Sayyaf, a Muslim extremist group in the Philippines.  For just over one year the couple was held hostage and moved almost daily around the jungles.  They were not the only hostages taken and they watched as ransoms were paid for some, some of the women were taken as wives for the extremists and some were killed.  Gracia’s book is an account of their day to day life- the events that held them together and the things that made her want to fall apart.

Eventually the Philippine army breaks in to rescue them and Martin dies next to Gracia during that rescue (she points this out very early in the book so I promise that is not a spoiler).   After such a long journey where their marriage, friendship and faith endured to read of his death from her perspective was heart breaking.

Gracia finishes the book with her story of being home, how her children are doing and the ministry she now has.  She speaks candidly about trying to learn to forgive her captors and the healing she and her family has gone through.  She talks about being angry with God and the struggle to understand why bad things happen.  And while she doesn’t have all the answers there is a trust you can read in the undertone of the story that speaks volumes about her journey.

 

  • Share This Post:
  • Share This Post on Facebook
  • Email this Post
  • Share this Post on Twitter
It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


52 Books in 52 Weeks: Week #20 “Where Wildflowers Bloom”


Welcome to week 20 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks” series!  If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up!

This week I read Where Wildflowers Bloom (Sisters at Heart) by Ann Shorey. This was one of the free Amazon downloads from a while back- love these free books. It’s not free right now but hopefully it will be again!

The War Between the States stole a father and brother from Faith Lindberg– as well as Royal Baxter, the man she wanted to marry. The only relative she has remaining is her grandfather. With so many bad memories in Noble Springs, Missouri she wants to take her grandfather and head out West to Oregon. She spends her time trying to talk her grandfather into selling their family store so they can leave with nothing holding them back.

When Royal Baxter suddenly returns to town, Faith allows herself to hope that her dreams might come true. As he begins to court her he tells her of HIS desire to go to Oregon. But rumors of his trysts in other nearby towns make Faith doubt his sincerity.

Meanwhile Curt and Rosemary, a brother and sister, are in town and Faith has be-friended them. Rosemary was a nurse during the Civil War and is treated horribly by the towns people because she worked on men. (This INFURIATED me as I read the book.) Her brother Curt received a significant knife injury during the war so has a nasty scar down the side of his neck. Both have sweet spirits and are true friends.

Will Faith choose Royal just so she can leave town or decide to stay where her family has lived for generations and run the local store?

  • Share This Post:
  • Share This Post on Facebook
  • Email this Post
  • Share this Post on Twitter
It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


Week #19: “Paper Roses” by Amanda Cabot


Welcome to week 19 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks” series! If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up!

I am playing catch up so it has been a few weeks since I read “Paper Roses” by Amanda Cabot but I have still thought about it a few times. And that says a lot for a Christian historical fiction novel. Most of them I have found pretty shallow and forgetful.

The main character, Sarah Dobbs, immediately seemed almost real to me. A well bred girl from the East her parents had died leaving her to care for her very young sister. In an act of desperation she became a mail order bride and surprised herself by falling in love with a man through his letters, which she call her “Paper Roses.”

After a long train trip she reaches his hometown only to be met by his brother, Clay, at the station. Her love has been murdered. Going home for her is not an option so she is forced to depend on the family that should have been hers to keep a roof over her and her sister’s head.

The book is the story of her struggle to establish herself as an independent woman in Texas, find the man who murdered her love and find a new family and home.

It’s the first of 3 books in the “Texas Dreams” series so I will be trying to track down inexpensive copies of the other two!

  • Share This Post:
  • Share This Post on Facebook
  • Email this Post
  • Share this Post on Twitter
It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.


52 Books in 52 Weeks #18: “Before The Scarlet Dawn”


I owe you guys two book posts so I am playing catch up today!

Welcome to week 18 of the “52 Books in 52 Weeks” series!  If you haven’t seen all the books take a moment and catch up!

The book I read this week was Before the Scarlet Dawn: Daughters of the Potomac, Book 1 (The Daughters of the Potomac).

The book’s description on Amazon is pretty reliable:

 In 1775, Hayward Morgan, a young gentleman destined to inherit his father’s estate in Derbyshire, England, captures the heart of the local vicar’s daughter, Eliza Bloome. Her dark beauty and spirited ways are not enough to win him, due to her station in life.   

Circumstances throw Eliza in Hayward’s path, and they flee to America to escape the family conflicts. But as war looms, it’s a temporary reprieve. Hayward joins the revolutionary forces and what follows is a struggle for survival, a test of faith, and the quest to find lasting love in an unforgiving wilderness.

Because I am working on 1776 right now I was very interested in this book because the time periods are pretty close together.  It was a great picture of what life would have been like for Abigail Adams.

The book was completely riveting for the first 75% of the content.  Then a HUGE turn takes place in the plot and it felt like the author needed to wrap it up so she just rushed through the wrap up.  I was really disappointed in the ending.

This is only the first of a series though so I will keep my eyes out for the follow up.  I don’t know that I would pay $9.99 for it but its a definite read from the library or if it pops up FREE on Amazon!

  • Share This Post:
  • Share This Post on Facebook
  • Email this Post
  • Share this Post on Twitter
It is important to note that this blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorships, paid insertions, or other forms of compensation. The compensation received will never influence the content, topics or posts made in this blog. All opinions stated in this blog belong to its author and no one else. I will only endorse products, companies, and services that I have found worthy of my time and opinion. A Frugal Chick is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.amazon.com.