When it came time to compile this post I was surprised at how many books I’d finished this month. And there were some great ones! So let’s go!
A Rose Among Thornes by Terrie Todd
I actually read this one back in April, but it was still in pre-publication. I didn’t want to write about it until it was ready to go, which it is now. This is a fascinating work of historical fiction set in Canada during World War II—and I love that it is based on an actual family’s experience. It’s a story of forgiveness and love that will leave you thinking about it for a long time.
Code Name Helene by Ariel Lawhon
Another historical novel based on a real person—this one an Australian woman who worked on the ground with the French resistance on behalf of the OSS. Seriously, you couldn’t make this character up! An absolutely fascinating and inspiring read.
Tidewater Bride by Laura Frantz
As usual, Laura writes a beautiful story putting the reader right in that community of Jamestown 20ish years after it was settled. Colonists, planters, adventurers, Native Americans, romance, intrigue and danger—this book has it all!
Still the One by Rachel D. Russell
This is the first book in the Deep Haven Collection. If you’ve followed my reads over the years you know I love Susan May Warren’s books, especially the Christianson family who live in Deep Haven. The Deep Haven Collection tells over Deep Haven stories with cameo appurtenances by some of your favorite Susan May Warren Deep Haven characters! But these books are written by other authors with Susan May Warren’s stamp of approval. So I wasn’t sure it would be the same reading experience. But I love those characters. And guess what? It was seamless! Rachael did a great job of creating the Deep Have I know and love. I’ll be checking out the others in this collection, for sure!
The Whimsical Christian by Dorothy L. Sayers
I was so excited to find this collection of 18 of Dorothy Sayers’ Christian apologetics essays. I only knew her as the author of the Lord Peter Whimsy mysteries, but then heard a podcast about her friendship with C.S. Lewis and her extensive Christian writings and wanted to check them out! She’s witty and insightful and, like C.S. Lewis, sometimes way beyond my understanding! But what a great thinker and writer. I would definitely pick up more of her non-fiction books.
Someday Soon by Melissa Tagg
This novella is part of the Love’s Treasure novella collection, but I bought them all to read this one book. Like Susan May Warren’s Deep Haven, Melissa Tagg’s Maple Valley feels like a real place to me. And this novel is set there with those characters I’ve come to love. The only disappointment? It ended too quickly!
Saving Miss Everly by Sally Britton
Book 3 of 5 in the Inglewood series. This was my least favorite so far. It was a good story, I just didn’t connect with this sister the way I did with her twin. Still, looking forward to book 4 and the next romance among this group of childhood friends set in Regency England!
The Heart’s Charge by Karen Witemeyer
I have loved Karen’s books since her very first one, but I have to say every book she writes just gets better! This is book 2 of the Hanger’s Horseman series—and I am salivating for book 3! The series is just that good! And of course I especially loved this one because she was working on it when we went on a writer’s retreat together in this part of Texas back in January 2019.
John Eyre by Mimi Matthews
Well. I apparently skimmed the synopsis of the book and assumed it was about Bertha Mason Rochester’s backstory. I was wrong. It was a retelling of Jane Eyre with gender switches. And it was amazing! So instead of Jane, we have John coming to a crumbling estate to tutor two mysterious boys, wards of Bertha Mason Rochester, a woman with a secret. So incredibly creative! And she definitely captures that gothic romance style of the Brontes. I read it pretty much in two sittings.
The Gospel Comes with a House Key by Rosaria Butterfield
I read this book with my sister and a group of ladies she knows this summer. I came to it with a couple of pre-concieved ideas: 1) it would make me feel like I don’t do it right and 2) it would be shallow. I was wrong on both counts. This book is less about the trappings of what we think of as hospitality (food, tables, chairs, etc) and more about the why of hospitality in terms of theology and my own heart. It asked questions of me I hadn’t considered. It convicted me in things I didn’t expect. I pulled me deeper into relationship with the Lord and helped me understand why and how God calls us to love our neighbor. Extremely impactful.
That’s all for this month! Looking forward to some of the things inching up in my stacks for August!
Happy reading, y’all!