Book Review: A Single Spark by Judith Miller

If you are a fan of historical inspirational fiction or Judith Miller in general, you’ll love this new release from Bethany House! A Single Spark, coming out on June 2nd, captures a pivotal era in American history and I actually learned more about the war efforts from the perspective of women left behind during the Civil War and the danger they faced while lending support to an epic cause.

Wanting to do her part in the war effort, Clara McBride goes to work in the cartridge room at the Washington Arsenal, the city’s main site for production and storing of munitions. She’s given the opportunity to train new employees and forms a friendship with two of them. All seems to be going well, especially when one of the supervisors shows interest in her.

Lieutenant Joseph Brady is an injured army officer who, no longer able to lead troops into battle, has been assigned to a supervisory position at the Washington Arsenal. While Clara has caught his eye, he also makes it his mission to fight for increased measures to prevent explosions in the factory.

But when suspicions rise after multiple shipments of Washington Arsenal cartridges fail to fire and everyone is suspect for sabotage, can the spark of love between Joseph and Clara survive?

Judith Miller sparks interest through her lively and easy-to-read historical offerings. This title in particular, has characters you’ll love, characters you’ll despise, emotion, and mystery! The gentle romance weaving its magic between the pages will endear you. Overall, it’s a 4-star read for anyone who enjoys clean, simple historical fiction with a dash of love and strong elements of faith.

I received a complimentary copy of this title via NetGalley with thanks. Opinions expressed are my own.

Book Review: The Erie Canal Brides Collection

If you’re a fan of historical American Christian romance, you’ll enjoy The Erie Canal Brides Collection. Touted as “7 Romances Develop Along Man-Made Waterways of New York and Ohio”, it’s written by a talented group of various authors. Each book feels complete and wasn’t a one-night read for me – it may require an investment of time. I perused a digital version so I can’t speak to the heft of the actual print edition, but there was a lot to consume in this one!

Of the seven titles, there were obviously a few stories that I preferred more than others. Titles included in the collection include:

  • The Way of a Child by Lauralee Bliss, Little Falls, New York 1817
  • Wedding of the Waters by Rita Gerlach, Goshen Creek, New York. 181
  • Digging for Love by Ramona K. Cecil, Rochester, New York 1822
  • Return to Sweetwater Cove by Christina Miller, Sweetwater Cove, New York, 1825
  • Journey of the Heart by Johnnie Alexander, Circleville, Ohio, early 1852
  • Pressing On by Rose Allen McCauley, Zoar, Ohio, 1856
  • The Bridge Between Us by Sherri Wilson Johnson, Albion, New York, 1859

With so many choices, I was exposed to authors I had never read before and dug into an aspect of history that I’ve never really thought about. Some stories were a little deeper, some a little more emotional, some more preach-y than others, but there is definitely a title for everyone who is a fan of this genre included in the pack.

My personal favourites, though very different styles, were Digging For Love (prejudice against the Irish) and Journey of the Heart (abolition.) No objectionable content in any of the stories, of course, and each included that sweet dash of romance. It wasn’t a 5-star rating from me just because I was indifferent to a few of the included tales. However, it was a nice way to spend a few cozy evenings.

This title was published on March 1, 2019 by Barbour Publishing Inc., known for being
“a leading publisher of Christian books offering exceptional value and biblical encouragement.”

I was provided with a digital copy of this title via NetGalley. All opinions expressed are my own.