My Thoughts ~
Five years after the final shot was fired in the War Between the States, Selah Daughtry can barely manage to keep herself, her two younger sisters, and their spinster cousin fed and clothed. With their family's Mississippi plantation swamped by debt and the Big House falling down around them, the only option seems to be giving up their ancestral land.
Pinkerton agent and former Union cavalryman Levi Riggins is investigating a series of robberies and sabotage linked to the impoverished Daughtry plantation. Posing as a hotel management agent for the railroad, he tells Selah he'll help her save her home, but only if it is converted into a hotel. With Selah otherwise engaged with renovations, Levi moves onto the property to "supervise" while he actually attends to his real assignment right under her nose.
Selah isn't sure she entirely trusts the handsome Yankee, but she'd do almost anything to save her home. What she never expected to encounter was his assault on her heart.
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My Thoughts ~
Got a love for historical fiction, a desire to see modern issues tackled, a yearning for romance, and a fancy for a plethora of wisecracks that will have you snorting in an improper way? Want to see all those things combined into one fantastic story?
A Rebel Heart by Beth White fills this order like icy lemonade on a hot July day.
A Rebel Heart is full of mystery, daring escapes, and lots of suspects. I enjoyed how the mystery was laid out for the reader, finding that this style worked well for this novel. Major details were made known early in the story, but the author kept just enough tantalizing evidence back, leaving me eagerly turning the pages until I knew it all.
In the midst of this mystery, there's one of those romances that truly defines the "It's Complicated" status. Actually, that status defines all the relationships in this tale, romantic or otherwise. Levi and Selah navigate their complicated history while working on repairing the damaged relationships of friends and family around them as they also work together to transform the beautiful plantation into a luxury hotel. While the racism from some characters made me cringe, I applaud the author for not only writing a novel that was delicately handled, but (sadly) true to the era. The author takes a extensive look at all the characters, revealing deeper complexities than skin color or home state, but delving into forgiveness and what it really means to follow after God in your life.
Four Stars ~ A complex, humorous, and romantic start to what is sure to be an entertaining series! A Rebel Heart is the first book in Beth White's Daughtry House Series! I look forward to the next installment!
Disclaimer ~ In accordance with FTC regulations, I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher. I was not compensated, nor was a positive review required. All opinions expressed are my own.
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See you next time, and God bless you guys!!!
~V. Joy Palmer
V. Joy Palmer is the author of Love, Lace, and Minor Alterations and a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. She is also an avid blogger and co-founder of Snack Time Devotions. In her spare time, Joy is an unprofessional chocolate connoisseur/binger, and she loves acting crazy and drinking coffee with the teens she mentors. When Joy isn’t urging the elves that live in her computer to write, she’s hanging out with her husband, their adorable baby girl, and their socially awkward pets.