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|Format: DRM Free ePub|
Vendor: Barbour Publishing
Publication Date: 2015
RAMONA K. CECIL is a wife, mother, grandmother, freelance poet, and award-winning inspirational romance writer. Now empty nesters, she and her husband make their home in Indiana. A member of American Christian Fiction Writers and American Christian Fiction Writers Indiana Chapter, her work has won awards in a number of inspirational writing contests. Over eighty of her inspirational verses have been published on a wide array of items for the Christian gift market. She enjoys a speaking ministry, sharing her journey to publication while encouraging aspiring writers. When not writing, her hobbies include reading, gardening, and visiting places of historical interest.
NANCY J. FARRIER is an award-winning author of numerous books, articles, short stories, and devotions living in Southern California. She is married and the mother of five children and one grandson. Nancy feels called to share her faith with other through her writing.
JoAnn lives on the Minnesota prairie which is a setting for many of her stories. Once a full-time CPA, JoAnn now spends most of her time researching and writing. JoAnn has published historical nonfiction books for children and several novels with Barbour Publishing in the Heartsong Presents line as well as the American Adventure and Sisters in Time series for children. Several of her novellas are included in CBA best-selling anthologies by Barbour Publishing. JoAnn’s love of history developed when she worked at an historical restoration in North Carolina for five years. She enjoys researching and weaving her fictional characters’ lives into historical backgrounds and events. JoAnn believes that readers can receive a message of salvation and encouragement from well-crafted fiction. She captivates and addresses the deeper meaning between life and faith.
Her titles have appeared on the CBA and ECPA bestseller lists; won two Christy Awards; and been finalists for the RITA, Daphne Du Maurier, Inspirational Readers Choice, and Carol award contests. Library Journal presented her with a Best Books 2014: Genre Fiction award in the Christian Fiction category for Firewall.
DiAnn is a founding board member of the American Christian Fiction Writers; the 2015 president of the Romance Writers of Americas Faith, Hope & Love chapter; and a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers Association and International Thriller Writers. She speaks to various groups and teaches writing workshops around the country. She and her husband live in sunny Houston, Texas.
DiAnn is very active online and would love to connect with readers on any of the social media platforms listed at www.diannmills.com.
Cassie5 Stars Out Of 5Bride's Agreement: Five Romances Develop Out of ConvenienceJune 8, 2017CassieQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Very sweet stories. Enjoyed.
Melissa LGender: Female5 Stars Out Of 5A Bride's AgreementDecember 17, 2015Melissa LGender: FemaleQuality: 0Value: 0Meets Expectations: 0This book is a collection of five stories set in the 1800s and involving marriage agreements that may have included the bride and may not have. They may or may not include marriage agreements that began with love. The stories are Christian based and will approach a relationship with God in different ways as well as use various Bible verses or different aspects of applying Christian values. I found that with each story I was able to see myself within the pages and understand the conflict the characters were involved in. Most of the stories had the characters trying to find their faith in God and learning how to place their trust in Gods plan for them. There were other themes such as learning forgiveness and sins of arrogance, greed, excessive drinking and gambling in which the main and secondary characters were used to teach the reader.
Thanks to a Lonely Heart by Elaine Bonner
Steven Barnes is a long way from home and carrying a lot of guilt. When he receives word that his wife and passed away and that he must come home or his children will become wards of the state Steven makes a rash decision. He asks waitress Emily Johnson to marry him in name only and become the caretaker of his five children.
Emily is a childless widow and says no to Steven but agrees to think on it. Emily finally agrees but cant figure out why. Steven Barnes is cold and hardly speaks to her. When she arrives at the farm, she is met with anger and suspicion by the children and locals. She doesnt know what else to do but follow Gods word and eventually she wins over three of the children, but cant seem to break through the two older boys and even Steven himself.
With faith in God, patience and time, Emily soon learns that Stevens former wife was verbally and emotionally abusive to the point he couldnt live with her and that she attempted to turn the town and the children against Steven. Steven with Gods direction discovers evidence proving his support and love of his family. When he confronts the children with the evidence along with friends who speak up regarding Rebeccas games, Steven begins to heal himself and his family.
A Brides Sweet Surprise in Sauers Indiana by Ramona Cecil
Regina Seitz thinks she is in love with Eli the millers son but her father refuses to allow the match as he is set on a German son-in-law to take over the farm. She is unaware that her father when faced with no local prospects for his daughter sends money to Germany and seals an agreement for a mail order husband.
Diedrich and his father travel to Indiana but his heart isnt it in. He has dreams of heading to California to find the promised Gold, but he wont go back on his word and hurt his father and settles for the future set for him. He also wasnt expecting how attracted he is to Regina.
Falling for each other sets off a whole new set of problems, especially when a secret to do with Reginas past that connects to Diedrichs own family has his father calling off the wedding.
In this story you read how sometimes we think we understand Gods word and are doing what he wants, only to find that we have become arrogant and have lost our trust in letting God take over. We have made assumptions that have displaced Gods will in our lives.
Sonoran Secret by Nancy J. Farrier
Eduardo Villegas is a Christian man who makes a deal to marry in order to forgive anothers debts to him. When the man proves as devious as expected, Eduardo finds himself married to the wrong daughter.
Chiquita has had such a traumatic past that she no longer speaks and is afraid of so much. She works hard and suffers in silence in order to make her new husband as happy as she can. Slowly she finds he is fair and will never hurt her regardless if he is angry or not.
Chiquita has never been taught about Jesus, his love or his sacrifice. She has been taught she is unworthy. Eduardo shows her through Gods word who Jesus is and of his great love and forgiveness. When Chiquitas life is threatened, she finds herself wishing she knew Jesus and reaches out to him.
In Eduardo and Chiquitas story you will see how even being a Christian such as Eduardo you will struggle with issues such as anger, but with Gods help and through prayer we can overcome anything. Chiquita is shown how truly worthy she is and how special God finds her.
Loves Shining Hope by JoAnn A. Grote
JoAnn Grote is one of my favorite authors and her style of writing just draws me in.
In Loves Shining Hope she introduces us to Jason Sterling, a young man with hopes of marrying his childhood love Miranda and becoming an architect. With the unexpected deaths of his parents, Jason must place his dreams on hold to run the family farm and raise his siblings. He never expected Miranda to turn his marriage proposal down because of his responsibilities.
Pearl Wells has loved Jason Sterling even though he always loved her friend Miranda. When she overhears Miranda callously throwing Jasons love aside she is shocked. Pear decides to help Jason and his family even though the outcome could damage her reputation.
Pearl continues to believe Jason loves Miranda. Jason slowly realizes he loves Pearl but thinks she loves his brother Frank. Miranda becomes jealous and wants Jason back. A twisted love story that only God can turn around through faith and trust.
Kiowa Husband by DiAnn Mills
The saying saving the best for last applies to this story as it was my favorite of the group.
A young girl, Sarah Jane, is traveling with her parents to Oregon with dreams shared as a family. She never thought they would succumb to Typhoid Fever. When the only one in the wagon train willing to help her is Painted Hands, a white man raised by Indians, she is told by the committeemen that she must marry him for them to stay behind together.
Painted Hands has no use for the committeemen, especially the hypocritical clergyman. He turned away from God long ago and favors the Kiowa gods. With personal plans of his own in Oregon and no wish for a wife, Painted Hands tells Sarah Jane he will divorce her once they get to Oregon. He turns a cold shoulder to Sarah Jane in order to shut her out, but Sarah Jane isnt so easily dissuaded.
As the pair faces one obstacle after another, God works on Painted Hands through several miracles. Will Painted Hands give up the Kiowa gods in favor of the Almighty? Will Sarah Jane and Painted Hands find that God meant for them to be together regardless of their plans?
Every one of these stories shows the human nature and how hard it can be to turn our lives over to God in faith and trust. I once read a line in RoseMarie Naramores book, Abound In Love, in which the character discusses God being in control but she was going to ride shotgun. That line stuck with me and I believe it is a good representation of how we should place our lives in Gods hands.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3: 5 NIV
I received this ebook in exchange for my honest review.
VeraGender: Female5 Stars Out Of 5wonderful faith based love stories from the old westOctober 1, 2015VeraGender: FemaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5This book contains five stories of marriages of convenience that bring happiness, love, and joy to each marriage.
Thanks to a Lonely Heart by Elaine Bonner
Steven Barnes needs a wife to care for his 5 children he hasnt seen in years; he left to seek work in Austin and never returned, he sent correspondence and money during these years. His children think he simply deserted them. His wife allowed all to believe he had deserted them and she has died as a martyr to Stevens supposed desertion; the county will take the children shortly. Emily Johnson is a widow and so very lonely she has a deep desire for a family; Steven proposed a marriage of convenience for the children; she would be a housekeeper and nanny but not a true wife; they travel two weeks back to his farm in Tyler. Ms. Bonner set this story up very well and plotted it skillfully. She paced the story just right and shows her skill of creating difficult situations and turning them into joy. She created a family from five resentful children, a lonely Christian woman, a man eaten with guilt, a community that sees Emily as the other woman, Christian friends that help them deal with the difficult situation, and a faith in God to know what is best and that he will heal the situation. The Christian principles and values are not preachy or pushy, but show how God can set things in motion and create a family from the most vicarious situation. This was a sweet love story that shows Gods love, forgiveness, healing, and redemption and that with God all things are possible. Ms. Bonner showed how good God is to us, and how he can heal any broken heart or spirit. I enjoyed this sweet inspirational story very much.
A Brides Sweet Surprise in Sauers, Indiana by Ramona Cecil
Regina Seitzs father is determined to marry her off to a man of German descendent and to insure her husband is German he has sent to his former home in Venne, Hanover for Diedrich Rothhaus. Neither of them wants to marry the other. Regina has her eye on Eli Tanner a non-German and Deidrichs eye is on the gold fields of California. They each have a plan to thwart the marriage plans of the fathers, as Deidrichs father came with him to America; Deidrich and Regina join forces. Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive; they have a problem as they both feel an attraction.
Ms Cecils plot and pacing was right on target as she leads these two towards love and security, God always has a plan regardless of what man thinks he wants and this love story is no different. Ms. Cecil added an extra element to this story; Eli Tanner is a mean, brutish, unprincipled young man; Ms. Cecils character development of him made my skin crawl. Reginas mother and father have kept a huge secret from her; this secret will cause heartache, jealousy, hatred and discontent, but God is in control in this as always.
Ms. Cecil was not pushy or preachy in her lessons of Gods love; the settlers that came to settle this vast land were by and large godly people and Ms. Cecils writing reflects this history.
I enjoyed this story and Ms. Cecil writing style.
Sonoran Secret by Nancy J. Farrier
Diego Garcia owes Eduardo Villegas a debt; in return for absolving the debt, Garcia will give his daughter in marriage to Eduardo. Eduardo expected Teresa to appear from under the veil, but things did not go as planned. He is wed to Fealdad, which mean ugly; she has not talked since babyhood, can not read or write, is frightened to death of men, worked like a slave by her mother and father, and has been physically abused by them her entire life. Eduardo allows the marriage to stand and begins a life with Fealdad whom he renamed Chiquita, which means small. Their road is very rocky to happy ever after.
Ms. Farrier infused this story with such emotion. I felt so sad reading of Chiquita life; I wanted to cry. She gave the handsome Eduardo a serious character flaw; although a Christian he has a bad temper that frightens Chiquita immensely. Ms. Farrier crafted a story of such deep emotions as she leads our characters through forging a solid marriage in spite of the flaws of each. This is a story of redemption, Gods love, insecurities, evil men, attempted murder, strong central characters and romance. She included fleeing from evil gunmen, flash floods, and the mystery of who is trying to kill Chiquita and why. Ms. Farrier presented the plan of Salvation so well in the story that it did not feel pushy or preachy. I enjoyed this story very much as Ms. Farrier brought Eduardo and Chiquita from the deepest despair to the highest of love for each other and for God. Ms. Farrier plotted this story very well from beginning to end, and added a surprise for Chiquita in the last chapters of the story; the pacing of the story was very good. I never lost interest nor did the story lag. This is a good clean solid story.
Loves Shining Hope by JoAnn A. Grote
This is the story of rejection, misunderstandings, responsibility, doing what is right regardless of what you have to give up, faith in Gods will, Christian values, and romance between husband and wife.
Pearl Wells has always loved Jason. Jason loves Miranda, and then she threw him over because he would not turn his back on his family and farm after his mom and dad died in a buggy accident. Jason has a responsibility to his siblings and gives up his architecture plans to farm; Pearl wants to help him with his family, the town gossips are busy spreading rumors, her adoptive parents are worried about the rumors and in middle of all Jason proposes to Pearl. Ms. Grote plotted this story and paced it very well, the different situation going on in this story keep the interest at a high peak as you are rooting for Pearl to attain her dream of love with Jason, booing Miranda and her better than thou ways, wanting to shake Jasons brother Frank, wanting to shake Jason really hard several times during the story especially when he thought Pearl had another love interest, help Maggie in the teenage years, and heal sweet little Graces spirit. I wanted to cry at times, laugh at times, and sigh at times I became so involved with the characters; this is an emotional well-developed story. I loved the fact that Frank read the The Progressive Farmer from front to back as I grew up reading this farm magazine.
Ms. Grote led our main characters through hoops before they admitted to the love they felt, but with Gods grace they will get their happy ever after. The Christian values presented in this story are not pushy or preachy, but add to the story greatly. Ms. Grote did a great job of uniting a family with Christian values and with love; this story will keep your interest from first page to last.
Kiowa Husband by DiAnn Mills
Sara Jane Benson and her family are traveling to Oregon with the wagon train. Tragedy strikes when Typhoid fever strikes her mother and mother. Painted Hands, a white man raised until his teenage years by the Kiowa Indians and going to Oregon to look for his brother, is forced to marry Sara Jane as her family is voted off the train. What follows is a hollowing journey for Sara Jane and Painted Hands; Sara Jane contracts the fever, and Painted Hands begins to care greatly for Sara Jane as he nurses her. They have a very rough road ahead spiritually as well as emotionally. Sara is steadfast in her commitment to Painted Hands and is a very religious person with a deep faith in God however her faith will be sorely tested during this journey. Painted Hands lost his family to fire and his hands were severely burned; he has found his brother survived is in Oregon. Painted Hands comes back to the Lord during the journey, then backslides as they are faced with hardships and desperate times; he is fighting many demons. Ms. Mills clearly showed the grace of God, his forgiveness, and redemption in this story as well as a wonderful story full of forgiveness, strength, and love. Painted Hands will have to reveal to Sara Jane his history and the fact he feels he is cursed. He will have to come to terms with his failings and faults. The pacing of the story was spot on, the development of the characters was done well, and the plotting was great. Ms. Mills shows in this book what a mighty God we have and if we rely on him, he will bring us through the fire. Painted Hands, aka Toby Carlson, has many fires to pass through before he will find peace.
I loved watching Sara Jane and Painted Hands coming to terms with life and love. This is a wonderful faith-based story full of emotion.
These are not short stories but fully developed faith based stories that anyone will enjoy. The combined page total is 720 pages.
I received this book from Barbour Publishing and Netgalley in return for an honest review.
jenilee220OhioAge: 25-34Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5Good Read!September 14, 2015jenilee220OhioAge: 25-34Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4I enjoyed each of the books in this set. I have to say that the final three were my favorite! I had a hard time through some of the first two, just connecting and staying with the story... but I'm so glad I kept reading!