surprising bond drawing him toward the independent and beautiful woman. Displaced by a war and a painful history, he finds Hot Springs and the intriguing Jessica Ross a tempting place to start over. Determined to scale the heights of her bitterness and show her the power of love, August faces more than just Jessica's resistance but a more devious design to harm the civilian sailors housed in Hot Springs.
Will August's tender pursuit bring Jessica the healing and hope she needs, or will bitterness force her into the hands of a "true" enemy waiting to destroy much more than her heart?
Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes romance peppered with grace and humor. She currently resides in the lovely mountains of Asheville, NC where she is the mom of 5 great kids, speech-pathologist to about fifty more, lover of chocolate, jazz, and Jesus. Her debut historical novel, The Thorn Bearer, released in May 2015 and has garnered awards such as Reader's Favorites Award, finalist in the Grace Awards, shortlisted for the Inspy Awards, and a finalist in ACFW’s Carol Awards. Her second historical novel, The Thorn Keeper, released in Feb 2016 and her first contemporary romance, A Twist of Faith, released in April 2016 with a 4 star review from Romantic Times. You can get to know Pepper on her website, Facebook, Instagram, or over at her group blog, The Writer's Alley.
Check out the interview HERE.
1. Holiday - Christmas
2. Cookie – Preacher Cookies (aka chocolate/oatmeal no bakes)
3. Date option – Nice dinner and then the local bookstore…maybe ending with a stroll through the park or drive through the mountains
4. Tea – sweet, warm or cool
5. Vacation location – UK….EVERY time!
6. Animal – wolf, followed quickly by labs
7. Scripture – (One of my favorites) Ephesians 3:14-19
8. Chocolate – ALL, but I guess my favorite is dark
9. Restaurant – I really like Carrabas, but I’m open for a new favorite
10. Book genre – romance…all kinds
He’d learned hard lessons on patience—lessons, no doubt, she’d push to the edge if his first few days with her proved typical. But he’d found his home in Hot Springs. He’d never known what it meant to belong somewhere until he’d run to the assistance of Dr. Carter when a woman collapsed at the train depot a few months after his arrival to the camp. From that moment, the gentleness and forbearance, the trust, offered by Dr. and Mrs. Carter began the long and sweet healing August’s heart needed.
A place of belonging.
And Jessica’s entrance, along with the three-inch block of resentment on her shoulder, threatened to wedge distance between August and his beloved Carters. If nothing else, he had to win her indifference, but he wanted much more.
“You have had a busy entrance, no?”
She slid him a glance from her periphery and continued moving forward without a response.
“It must be difficult returning after so long. Much has changed for you but stayed the same for your small town.”
Her sudden exhalation of air broke the quiet and she shot him a heated look. “My small town hasn’t stayed the same from where I’m standing, Mr. Reinhold. The flood. The camp.” She focused ahead. “Not the same at all.”
“The spirit of your town is the same. Kind people, like your grandparents, and the beauty of the —”
“You need to understand something.” She stopped on the trail, her palms planted on her hips as she turned the full brunt of her fiery gaze on him. “We are not going to be friends.”
He combatted her statement with a shrug. “I am an optimist.”
She groaned and resumed her frantic pace up the hillside, slowed only by the limp in her stride. Silence moved between them like a wall. August glanced up at the afternoon sky, awash with a mixture of clouds and sun. He had to return to camp by dusk or he would endanger the freedom his good name allowed.
“Just because you think you know my grandparents doesn't mean you know me.” Jessica’s words erupted in a harsh whisper, fueling her steps to an even faster rhythm.
He kept the pace. “No. But knowing the kindness and the welcome from your grandparents has made me wish to know you as well. They assure me you can be kind.”
She turned the power of those emerald eyes on him, her mouth dropped wide. “Of course I can be kind. I’m a nurse, for heaven sakes.”
“I would not see the two as related.” August shoved his hands in his pockets, holding his grin in check. At least he had her talking. “Nurses have always brought needles and stings to me.”
Her brow tilted skyward. “Perhaps you deserved the needles and stings.”
The grip on his smile loosed completely. “No doubt, Nurse Ross. No doubt.”
Her gaze hesitated in his before she jerked her attention back to the path ahead and tightened her jaw into a line of defense. The fiery glint in those large eyes fascinated him. He knew the gentleness and longing braided through her letters, the dry humor and compassion infused onto the pages. But those eyes added a dimension of depth he’d failed to anticipate. Fascinating. Challenging.
Pepper Basham has written a captivatingly emotional and enthralling novel in her third book in the Penned in Time Series, The Thorn Healer. Basham has an exquisite way of capturing her readers’ attention from page one and keeping them enraptured until the very end. This beautifully written WWI story will enthrall readers and draw them in with raw emotions that will touch and fill the heart. Basham has a powerful way of expressing her characters and their stories, causing readers to become attached to both, as well as teaching and expressing truths, terrors, passions, and other emotions that will stir the soul. I would recommend this fantastic novel to readers that enjoy Basham’s other Penned in Time Series novels, as well as historical romance.
Series: Penned in Time
Genre: historical, romance, WWI, Christian
Publisher: Vinspire Publishing
Publication date: November 6, 2016
Number of pages: 327
Content Rating: PG
Book Rating: 5 stars
A review copy of this book was provided by the author via SLB Tours and the author's review team. A review was not required and all views and opinions expressed are my own.
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