Missouri Bride by Eugenia Riley

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Amazon Link:    http://amzn.to/29cHy0K

I loved reading this story.  It has been awhile since I read a historical romance that was set near the 1800’s which held my attention so well.  Most of the books of this time period I have read lately I haven’t even reviewed because I just don’t know what to write because there isn’t enough “meat” to the story.  I didn’t find that with Eugenia Riley’s, Missouri Bride

Missouri Bride follows the Civil War by about 10 years so we are ensconced in a story that brings the heartache, emotional and mental traumas of the destruction that war brings.  Matt Kendall and Amy Harris both suffered tragedy during the war and each survived but not without lasting impressions that cause problems in forming relationships.  Matt, at 17, watched his uncle and father killed and then joined the Confederate Army seeing death and desolation, but in an added twist he joins with Quantrill’s Raiders where he is exposed to much more cruelty and brutality.  His life is spared through the influence of Abel Harris, Amy’s father.

Amy last seen her father while he was on leave from the war and what she witnessed between her father and her mother has left her with the wrong impression of marriage and the relationship between a husband and wife.  Her father leaves and never comes back but Amy is left wishing he did.  Amy’s mother is cruel and mentally unstable leaving Amy and her younger sister, Hannah, living in abuse and fear.  Their only hope lies in two men….their father and his return and Lacy Garrett, Amy’s fiancé.

Matt Kendall, believes his life is set for a particular course but takes a side trip back to St. Louis to see his friend Abel Harris.  He is surprised by the news he hasn’t been around in years and feels compelled to help Amy and Hannah.  Matt and Amy decide to marry but both are unsure how to trust and open themselves to each other to make their marriage work. Through several trials they begin to forge a bond, when Lacy Garrett comes to town.  This love triangle is filled with anger, revenge, love, loyalty and sacrifice. When the dust settles, the question is who is Amy going to choose?

This is definitely a story filled with layers of dynamics to keep the readers interest.  There is war and the changes that result in both people and places; there is young love; lawlessness; domestic abuse; child abuse; mental instability and finally there is the happy ending for the characters.

I highly recommend this historical romance and believe it will capture your interest.


“Going Home” by James Shipman

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Amazon Link:    http://amzn.to/1WKWIQ0


James Shipman is a brilliant writer who draws the reader in so that they can connect with the characters and feel the story as if they were living it and not just reading it.  The emotions felt by the characters seem so real that your heart will ache for them and feel as if you know them yourself.  If you are a history buff, you will enjoy feeling the experiences of Joseph coming to life in your very hands.

“Going Home” is the story of Joseph Forsyth, the great-great grandfather of the author. I don’t know how much of the content is fiction created by author to fill voids and how much is based upon family stories, but I do know the character of Joseph is one I would be proud to claim as my ancestor if  I were James Shipman.  Joseph overcame surmountable obstacles within his lifetime with courage and stoicism.  He was loyal to family and friends no matter the situation and forever placed them before himself.  His self-sacrifice and hardworking ethics were an intricate part of whom he was and which set him apart from others.

James Shipman not only explored the life of his great-great grandfather but developed characters throughout the story that supported Joseph but also had their own stories the reader became a part of.  Within “Going Home” you read of arrogance, vengeance, pride, greed, selfishness, and unrequited love in these convoluted lives.  My favorite of these would be the Union nurse and doctor, Rebecca Walker and Thomas Johnston. I would gladly read a novel of these characters moving beyond Joseph’s life.

“Going Home” is an amazing story that shouldn’t be passed by.