Thursday, July 16, 2020

An Appalachian Summer By Ann H. Gabhart

An Appalachian Summer
by Ann H. Gabhart
Publisher: Revell
ISBN: 9780800729288

Does a book cover ever just grab you, and you don't care what the story is about, you're going to read it simply because you believe if the cover is so beautiful, what's in side might be too? When I saw that Revell was offering this book for review, it only took a 1/2 second for me to request it!

Summary:

Discover what happens when one intrepid young woman steps away from the past into a beautiful, wide-open future

In 1933 Louisville, Kentucky, even the ongoing economic depression cannot keep Piper Danson's parents from insisting on a debut party. After all, their fortune came through the market crash intact, and they've picked out the perfect suitor for their daughter. Braxton Crandall can give her the kind of life she's used to. The only problem? This is not the man--or the life--she really wants.

When Piper gets the opportunity to volunteer as a horseback Frontier Nursing courier in the Appalachian Mountains for the summer, she jumps at the chance to be something other than a dutiful daughter or a kept wife in a loveless marriage. The work is taxing, the scenery is jaw-droppingly gorgeous, and the people she meets along the way open a whole new world to her. The longer she stays, the more an advantageous marriage slips from her grasp. But something much more precious--true love--is drawing ever closer.

My Review:

You get a sense of An Appalachian Summer pretty much from the opening line. Here is a young lady, pretending. She's not where she wants to be. She's not doing what she wants to do. Piper is a character who's easy to like and hope for! The world is changing, Piper, figure out what this world holds for you!

As for Braxton Crandall, he's a nice enough fella. I mean, when we look at the times and the Great Depression, he's a man of the times. He sees a marriage with Piper a fortuitous arrangement for both of them. Piper's father would agree. While he would agree, he also loves his daughter and wants her to be happy.

And this is where Truda, Piper's aunt, has a huge impact. Goodness I enjoyed her character. She's a rare woman for the time who has lived her life on her own terms, not mandated by a man. Thanks to her wisdom, Piper's family isn't destitute when the Depression hits.

Unfortunately, Piper's best friend Jamie and his family don't fare so well. Understandably, Jamie pulled back after his family lost everything and they moved away. His timing with seeing Piper once again isn't the greatest... a couple of times during the story.

 Most of all I loved the idea of this book about the Frontier Nursing Service. That Mary Breckenridge saw outside of herself and her money to do SO much good with nurses and curriers drew me into the story. I enjoyed getting to know the way of life for the people in the hills and seeing how they take of each other, as well as strangers...unless of course they look like government folk! hahahahaha

This introduction to Ann H. Gabhart's writing made me feel at home and full of hope. I appreciate how she weaves faith into the tales the hill people carry. While they might believe in old wives tales, they're balanced out by Truth thanks to the nurses who come to deliver the babies and tend to needs that might arise.

About the Author:

Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several Shaker novels--The RefugeThe OutsiderThe BelieverThe SeekerThe Blessed, and The Gifted--as well as other historical novels, including Angel SisterThese Healing Hills, and River to Redemption. She and her husband live on a farm a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky. Ann enjoys discovering the everyday wonders of nature while hiking in her farm's fields and woods with her grandchildren and her dog, Frankie. Learn more at www.annhgabhart.com.

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