1. The Promise of Dawn #1
    The Promise of Dawn #1
    Lauraine Snelling
    Bethany House / 2017 / Trade Paperback
    $9.49 Retail: $15.99 Save 41% ($6.50)
    4.5 Stars Out Of 5 29 Reviews
    Availability: In Stock
    Stock No: WW218965
4.6 Stars Out Of 5
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  1. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    The Promise of Dawn
    August 23, 2018
    flourish
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I appreciate the strong Christian theme through out all of Lauraine Snelling's books. Her characters are fictional, however her books make them alive and real to the reader from the beginning page to the ending. I finished this book in one day. It was a wonderful read.
  2. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    From Norway to Minnesota!
    June 15, 2018
    lesacap1262
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I loved this book! I'm a huge fan of Lauraine Snelling and have read many of her books and lots of her previous series. My favorite genre is historical fiction and Christian fiction, so probably why I am a big fan. This book starts out meeting the Strand/Carlson family, a letter from a cousin inviting Gunalug Strand Carlson's son Rune and his family to Minnesota. Einar and Gerd strand are an older couple in need of help to run their farm and clearing land from the big pines in northern Minnesota. Life is difficult in Norway, jobs, food and land are scarce. So the offer from Einar and Gerd is to pay for the family's passage in exchange for their help on the farm. Gerd is ill and Einar can not keep up with the work and take care of her. So Rune and Signe Carlson and their three sons are on their way to Minnesota. We also learn the Signe is pregnant. The story takes them from Norway, through their journey across the ocean and over land, to their destination! We learn about their dismay when they arrive and are welcomed with hard work and unfriendly relatives. Was this a mistake, will the chores ever end? Will their Uncle Einar and Aunt Gerd ever be kind and loving? Will they ever pay off their debt and own a home and farm of their own? Their fortitude and faith are tested many times over, does God even hear their prayers?

    What I loved about this book was the faith aspect, small signs that God does hear their prayers. I enjoyed getting to know the characters and how they are forced to change to survive, and how they evolve over time. I also love the historical aspect of rural life in the early 1900's, how life was hard and there was work to be done, but it was also a simpler life where you relied on God and neighbors and your faith.

    I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House through their blogger program, this review is my own.
  3. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    Snelling
    February 19, 2018
    Blessing
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Lauraine has done it again. She tells the stories of immigrants in such a way you feel you are right there experiencing the hopes, fears and hard work and hard times but faith brings them and you through. Leaves me waiting for the next in the series!
  4. PRYOR
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    INCREDIBLE CHRIST-LIKENESS IN THE FACE OF HARDSHIP!
    November 8, 2017
    Moonpie
    PRYOR
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This book was amazing! It is 1909 and immigrants from all over the world were coming to America seeking a better life. Many family members went ahead and made the way for others to come. This was the case for Rune, Signe Carlson and their 3 sons. Their dream was to come to the U.S. from Norway to own land and have their own farm. Their opportunity came when Einar Strand, Runes uncle sends a letter to his parents. He has settled in Minnesota. The land he is homesteading is covered in huge pine trees. He needs help logging them and sending them to mills. His wife Gerd is ill and he requests for Rune and his family to move there and help. There is the promise of a home already built and large enough for all of them to live in, a school for children, and the understanding that after their tickets were paid back they would receive their own land. The

    Carlsons had never met the Strands, but they were family right? Norwegian Families were close and caring, right?

    The summer voyage is very difficult and uncomfortable and to make matters more challenging, Signe is pregnant with her fourth child. After previous miscarriages she is concerned about losing the baby. The worse is yet to come though. Arriving at Uncle Einars is when the nightmare begins. There is not a proper room other than the cold attic for the family to sleep in. The house is filthy and Aunt Gerd is bed fast and declining because of lack of care. Einar is hateful, uncaring and demanding. He has not concern for the young familys needs or even health. Aunt Gerd is constantly hollering for something and speaks little otherwise. She is also ungrateful for any kindnesses and very uncooperative. The promises go up in smoke and the Carlsons find themselves as nothing more than slaves with no end in sight.

    The author captures the minute details of day to day life in this era and the emotions and struggles of Rune and Signe. I even got tired reading about all the work they did, especially Signe and with expecting a child! I hurt for her missing and needing her loving family. She was so alone.

    In addition to being a delightful read, the most powerful part of this book is their Christ like attitudes Carlsons (even their children) in the face of constant cruelty and abuse. What a testimony!!! They kept their words kind, and continued to do their very best work. The patience the family displayed was incredible! Yes they became aggravated and upset but chose to give a soft answer or turn the other cheek. Their children followed their example in word and action with maturity far beyond their years. A strong faith in God and living His Word were their foundation. I admired them so much! I cannot wait for the sequel!

    I received this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have stated are my own.

  5. 3 Stars Out Of 5
    Perseverance, Family, and Trust
    November 7, 2017
    mjk108
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 3
    "Our someday has already begun. I see promises of dawn every day when the sun touches the tops of the big trees, the smoke rises from the chimney, Kirstin fuses for her morning meal, and the cow bellows that we should hurry."

    -Rune Carlson

    This first novel in the new series Under Northern Skies is set in Benson's Corner, Minnesota in 1909. Signe and Rune Carlson have signed a contract to work for Rune's Uncle Einar and Aunt Gerd in exchange for their fare to America. Thus begins a new life for Rune, Signe, and their three sons. The reality of what they find when they arrive at Uncle Einar's farm is vastly different than they imagined when planning the trip to America.

    Life with Einar, a harsh, work driven man, and Gerd, his ailing, bitter wife, is difficult and unpleasant and the work is never ending for all five of the Carlsons. Some of the characters are so unlikable, while others are filled with hope and perseverance. The book contains an interesting mix of personalities that in some cases never really get explained. The cause of Uncle Einar's bitterness never comes to light in the book.

    The themes of perseverance, personal freedom, family, and trust all play prominent roles in the story. I enjoyed the book, but I had a distinct dislike for Uncle Einar all the way through the book. In some ways, the story was a little sad, but in many other ways, the core of the story was uplifting. Sprinkled with historical detail about life in the early 1900's in rural Minnesota, the story will definitely appeal to readers of historic fiction.

    This ARC copy was received from Bethany House and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review. The above thoughts and opinions are wholly my own.
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