Tuesday, 20 November 2018

The Best of Intentions

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She swore to protecrt her nephew at any cost.  But what if that price is a chance at love?

In the aftermath of WWI, Grace Abernathy is determined to reunite her family, crossing an ocean to convince her widowed sister to return home to England.  Yet, in Toronto she dsicovers more tragedy - her nephew Christian in the custody of his paternal relatives, the formidable Easton family, who rejected Grace's sister because of her low social status.

Unconvinced the Eastons can be fitting caretakers, Grace uses an assumed name to secure the position of Christian's nanny and moves into the Easton estate.  There she can observe the family up close, while ensuring Christian's well-being.  In the course of her new role, she is shocked to find herself falling in love with Andrew Easton, the boy's guardian.  Unfortunately, Andrew is promised to a spoiled socialite who is sure to make a terrible stepmother for Christian.  Will Grace be able to protect her nephew...and her heart?
Four months and one day ago, I became an auntie.  While I do not have children of my own, I do have a strong love towards my little niece and an innate desire to see that she is safe and protected.  Fortunately, I do not need to ever worry over her security and well-being over how she is being raised as my sister and brother-in-law are fantastic parents.  But all the same, I couldn't imagine what it would be like if my niece wasn't being raised in a loving, supportive, caring, and safe environment.  I do know that I, like Grace Abernathy in The Best of Intentions, would do absolutely everything in my power to ensure my little niece is cared for in the best way.
So, I can completely sympathize with the heroine in Susan Anne Mason's latest novel, which is a kickoff to the new series, "Canadian Crossings" (can I also pause and say that, as a Canadian, I'm really loving how this series is set in Canada?!).  But of course, whenever there's a decision or course of action taken that relies on a bit of deception, the successive events are bound to get a bit sticky and a bit messy...
Similarly to Ms. Mason's previous novel, A Most Noble Heir (SO good!), The Best of Intentions has its fair share of family drama, including more than one story of forbidden love.  Tensions are high, relationships are strained, and things get all tangled up into a big, messy knot that brings one to wonder how will everything get all straightened out??  Whew!  It's a roller coaster ride of emotions, and so entirely worth every second of it. 
I highly recommend this novel and will be eagerly anticipating the follow-up, The Highest of Hopes coming in March 2019!
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.

River to Redemption


Back Cover

One young woman must stand up for freedom - and perhaps find her own in the process.

Orphaned in the cholera epidemic of 1833, Adria Starr was cared for by a slave named Louis, a man who passed up the opportunity to escape his bondage and instead tended to the sick and buried the dead.  A man who, twelve years later, is being sold by his owners despite his heroic actions.

Now nineteen, Adria has never forgotten what Louis did for her.  She's determined to find a way to buy Louis's freedom.  But in 1840s Kentucky, she'll need all of the courage and strength she possesses - and more.


What a compelling story!  Swept back to mid-1800s in the heart of Kentucky, Ann H. Gabhart brings to life a true story about a slave who cared for the sick and dying of the town of Springfield as cholera ravaged the area.  Louis single-handedly dug every grave to ensure that those who had passed on had a proper burial - something he certainly never was asked to do - nor was required to do.  But it was an action that I'm sure brought comfort to grieving family members and friends.  As the majority of those who hadn't fallen ill fled the town, Louis' actions are even more heroic as he risked fallen ill himself.
As with Ms. Gabhart's previous works, River to Redemption is full of rich, historical detail, deep, multi-faceted characters, and a moving storyline.  Her writing flows naturally and is lovely to read.  I have yet to be disappointed by one of Ms. Gabhart's works, and frankly, I don't think I ever will be.  Her "The Heart of Hollyhill" series is one of my absolute favourites (which I was also sad to see come to a close!).

As a sidenote, I really hope that there will be a sequel to River to Redemption.  The story of the epidemic and Adria's campaign for Louis's freedom may have concluded, but I feel as if Adria's story is just beginning.  So...pretty please can there be a sequel??  =)

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.