Among the Fair Magnolias by Tamera Alexander, Shelley Gray, Dorothy Love, & Elizabeth Messer (Blog Tour Review & Giveaway)


Welcome to my tour stop for Among the Fair Magnolias by four Christian romance authors: Tamera Alexander, Shelley Gray, Dorothy Love, and Elizabeth Messer. I've read books by Tamera and Dorothy previously. It was fun to jump back into similar settings to their books. Check out the book and author info, my review, and the giveaway below...

Among the Fair Magnolias: Four Southern Love StoriesAmong the Fair Magnolias
Four Southern Love Stories
by Tamera Alexander, Shelley Gray, Dorothy Love, & Elizabeth Messer
Christian Historical Romance
Paperback & ebook, 368 Pages
July 14th 2015 by Thomas Nelson


Summary

In the most turbulent decade of our nation’s history, four Southern women—destinies forged by birth, hearts steeled by war—face near impossible choices on their journeys in life . . . and in love.

To Mend a Dream by Tamera Alexander
Savannah Darby would do almost anything to revisit her family home. So when new owner, Aidan Bedford, a Boston attorney and former Union soldier, seeks to redecorate the house for his fiancée, Savannah jumps at the opportunity. But the clock is ticking. Can she find the box her father supposedly hid there during the war before her assignment is completed? And before she sees yet another battle lost on the home front. This time, one of the heart.

An Outlaw’s Heart by Shelley Gray
When Russell Stark returns to Fort Worth, he’s determined to begin a new life. But when he arrives at his mother’s homestead, he discovers she’s very ill, and the woman he loved is still as beautiful and sweet as he remembered. With time running out, Russell must come to terms with both his future and his past.

A Heart So True by Dorothy Love
Abigail knows all too well what is expected of her: to marry her distant cousin Charles and take her place in society. But her heart belongs to another. A terrible incident forces Abby to choose between love and duty.

Love Beyond Limits by Elizabeth Musser
Emily has a secret: She’s in love with one of the freedmen on her family’s plantation. Meanwhile, another man declares his love for her. Emily realizes some things are not as they seem and secrets must be kept in order to keep those she loves safe.

My Review

This is the first inspirational compilation I've read that's historical. I knew I would love Tamera Alexander's story because I have loved all of her books. The other three authors I wasn't sure about, but I didn't need to worry. The characterization, plot, and writing were all really good for the most part, especially considering that these are all fairly short novellas, all under 100 pages in length. Here's what I thought about each...

A Heart So True by Dorothy Love, 88 pages
I've read one other book by this author that was slow in parts to me, but this novella was a great pace. I immediately liked the heroine, Abigail. I wasn't sure how the romance would play out - if the guy she didn't want to like she would end up liking or if the guy she did like would be the one. It was interesting seeing how the romance played out. I loved the setting and there was plenty of tension and some sweet romance. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

To Mend a Dream by Tamera Alexander, 91 pages
I loved this story. It definitely was my favorite. I loved the way it started off and the short, but important, roles of the Savannah's siblings. I loved the conflicting emotions of both main characters and how, as a reader, I got to feel their emotions and read what they were thinking. There were some interesting questions brought up. I also loved the chemistry between Savannah and Aidan. The ending was a little rushed, but so sweet.

Love Beyond Limits by Elizabeth Musser, 82 pages
This story was so heartbreaking! I didn't know how to feel about Thomas and also about Emily's reactions. The whole ordeal was just depressing. It always makes me so mad to read about the Ku Klux Klan and the violence against African Americans and whites that supported them after the war. I appreciated that the author was honest in the telling. I also liked that there was a nice twist to this one and how that one things changed everything. A great story!

An Outlaw’s Heart by Shelley Gray, 82 pages
This story fell a little short for me. I didn't feel the depth in the characters as the other stories and I felt like the dialogue and situation was a little forced. I also didn't know the other characters who appeared to have cameos from prior books because I haven't read those. Otherwise, it was a sweet story with some fun twists.


Overall the compilation was enjoyable. One story was disappointing to me, but the other three were really great. If you enjoy these authors' other books, or enjoy reading historical Christian romance then I'd recommend this compilation. There were some yummy recipes and some good discussion questions in the back that would be perfect to use for a book club as well.

Content: Clean

Source: I would like to thank Thomas Nelson through Litfuse and NetGalley for my complimentary copy, which did not affect my review in any way.

About the Authors

Alexander, Gray, Love, Musser

Tamera Alexander is the best-selling author of numerous books including A Lasting Impression and The Inheritance. Tamera is a two-time Christy Award winner, two-time RITA winner, and a recipient of the prestigious Library Journal Award. A native of west Tennessee. Website - GoodreadsTwitter - Facebook

Dorothy Love makes her home in the Texas hill country with her husband and their golden retriever. An award-winning author of numerous young adult novels, Dorothy made her adult debut with the Hickory Ridge novels. Website - GoodreadsTwitter - Facebook

Shelley Gray is the author of The Heart of a Hero series. Her Amish novel (written as Shelley Shepard Gray), The Protector, recently made the New York Times best seller list. Website - GoodreadsTwitter - Facebook

Elizabeth Musser, a native of Atlanta, Georgia now living in France, is a novelist who writes what she calls 'entertainment with a soul.' For over 25 years, Elizabeth and her husband, Paul, have been involved in mission work with International Teams. Website - GoodreadsTwitter - Facebook

Tour-Wide Giveaway

Four best-selling novelists bring tales of four Southern women who face near impossible choices on their journeys in life and in love during the most turbulent decade of our nation’s history in Among the Fair MagnoliasDon't miss this collection of stories from Tamera Alexander, Shelley Gray, Dorothy Love, and Elizabeth Musser.

Join the authors in celebrating the release of Among the Fair Magnolias by entering to win their Southern Hearts Kindle Fire Giveaway and RSVPing to their August 13th author chat party!

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One grand prize winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire HD 6
  • One copy of Among the Fair Magnolias
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on 8/13. The winner will be announced at the Among the Fair Magnolias Facebook party. RSVP for a chance to connect with Tamera, Dorothy, Shelley, and Elizabeth, as well as for a chance to win some great prizes!

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RSVP today and spread the word—tell your friends about the giveaway via FACEBOOK, TWITTER, or PINTEREST and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 13th!

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