Friday, May 23, 2014

Review: The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn

The Pursuit of Tamsen LittlejohnThe Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn by Lori Benton

Tamsen wants to escape. Her step-father is forcing a betrothal and after his harsh treatment, she wants no man her father arranges to wed. She locates a frontiersman, Jesse Bird, to help her flee, but will running overmountain be safer?

Author Lori Benton weaves a fascinating historical tale about finding safety, love, and family. The historical background highlights a little known (or forgotten) piece of American history on the State of Franklin. During that time, many disputes were fought between Carolina and Franklin. It's also a time of civilization, wilderness, settlers, and Native Americans. All in all, the historical elements are imbedded into the tale, but are not the true highlight of this historical tale. Benton's history was well developed and enjoyable. Her end notes were interesting and helpful. I was very happy to read her resources that she used when she researched her novel.

Back to the main storyline, the verb throughout the entire tale is pursuit. Tamsen is pursuing freedom, her step-father and rejected suitor are pursuing Tamsen and her overmountian man, Jesse. In the meantime, Jesse is pursing safety for Tamsen as well as her heart. There are other characters in the settlements and wilderness who are pursuing various people, feelings, and places, but I don't want to give away everything! Faith is sprinkled throughout this piece. It was not forced, but spoken well between believers. They shared their memorized passages and the importance to laying it all in God's hands.

Tamsen's tale is a standalone novel just as Benton's first novel, Burning Sky. If you enjoyed reading Burning Sky, you will enjoy The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn. If you enjoy Colonial history or little known/forgotten history, you'll enjoy this unique novel. Thank you, WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for sharing this title with me. I hope Ms. Benton continues to write more novels!

Time Period: 1787
Location: Watauga settlement, North Caroline, USA

I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Review: Enduring Faith Series

Enduring Faith series by Susan Feldhake
#1 - In Love's Own Time
#2 - Seasons of the Heart
#3 - For Ever and Ever
#4 - Hope for the Morrow
#5 - From This Day Forward
#6 - Joy in the Morning
#7 - Serenity in the Storm
#8 - The Darkness and the Dawn

I finally found the Enduring Faith series! I originally read this series many years ago. It was one of the first series I finished when I discovered Christian fiction. Companion authors at that time included Janette Oke and June Masters Bacher.

My sister and I love to read and exchange books. Of course, Feldhake's books were one of the series we swapped. The only thing we remembered about this series was the character Alton Wheeler and our agreement about the series "ya'know, the series where everyone dies." With a character's name, it was easy to find the series at the library. Our statement is closer to a six-word memoir that wraps up our thoughts about the books.

I don't want to throw you off from reading Feldhake's books. Yes, people die in the book, but it's a series based in the 1800's. As a nurse recently stated at an inservice, "it's hard to die today." In history, it was difficult to survive because of illness, accidents, travel, etc. and Feldhake clearly covered it well.

I grew to love the families and neighbors in the Enduring Faith series. They grew together, grew apart, grew up, and grew in faith. As with every up, there were a great many low valleys, but Feldhake's message was to share that the Lord will see you through all trials and triumphs in life. As Fanny shared in book two, "After all, many a time the Good Book says: 'And it came to pass,' never that it came to stay!"

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