A Bride for Keeps by Melissa Jagears

Leah Courtney
Melissa Jagears was a new to me author. A Bride for Keeps is her first book. Set in the Old West state of Kansas, the story is one of mail order brides, of pioneer living, and of learning to love and trust bother God and other people.

I loved the heroine of the story- Julia. She is strong and determined and fleeing a difficult past. It took me a while to like Everett- our story's hero. He is purposefully not very likable in the beginning. He is also having some difficulty trusting; although he needs to return to seeking God's will to help him deal with his distrustful feelings. There is a sweet romance here. And the plan of salvation fits into the story very clearly and seamlessly- not at all preachy.

This book ended up being one of those really great books to read. I was totally absorbed. I didn't want to leave it when I had to. I wanted to return to it as soon as I could. The characters were compelling and drew me in. I missed them when I wasn't there. (Only another book lover would understand.)

I came across a term a few years ago-PABD-Post Amazing Book Disorder. I've had it today, the day after finishing A Bride for Keeps. It's that lost feeling- a sense of completion that finishing a great story gives, but also a sense of loss knowing I'm through with the story. Melissa Jagears is an author I will definitely be looking for in the future.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book for review purposes. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
A Bride for Keeps
Bethany House Publishers (October 1, 2013)
Melissa Jagears


A Word From The Author:

I am a stay at home mother on a tiny little farm with a fixer-upper house. As much as I love writing and reading about homesteaders, I am so glad I’m a homesteader during an era with modern grocery stores to take up for my slack. I am an ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher by trade, and I still work occasionally in that field along with being my church’s financial secretary and writing novels.

My husband and I have been married since 2001 and have a daughter and two little boys. My husband shares my fascination with traditional living except for being more hands on. He loves blacksmithing, knife smithing, traditional archery, hunting, etc. Generally whatever a mountain man does, he does it or has or wants to attempt it. He comes in handy for research! And of course, the rest of the family gets involved. I have my own blackpowder rifle, named Calvin, that my husband made for me. And I’m pretty sure my daughter is probably one of very few her age who can instruct adults how to shoot a longbow properly. The boy digs random holes in my yard to make “cement” with dirt and water making our yard a tripping hazard. The baby does what babies do.


A Tender Tale of Love on the Prairie Perfect for CBA Readers!

Although Everett Cline can hardly keep up with the demands of his homestead, he won't humiliate himself by looking for a helpmate ever again--not after being jilted by three mail-order brides. When a well-meaning neighbor goes behind his back to bring yet another mail-order bride to town, he has good reason to doubt it will work, especially after getting a glimpse at the woman in question. She's the prettiest woman he's ever seen, and it's just not possible she's there to marry a simple homesteader like him.

Julia Lockwood has never been anything more than a pretty pawn for her father or a business acquisition for her former fiance. Having finally worked up the courage to leave her life in Massachusetts, she's determined to find a place where people will value her for more than her looks. Having run out of all other options, Julia resorts to a mail-order marriage in far-away Kansas.

Everett is skeptical a cultured woman like Julia could be happy in a life on the plains, while Julia, deeply wounded by a past relationship, is skittish at the idea of marriage at all. When, despite their hesitations, they agree to a marriage in name only, neither one is prepared for the feelings that soon arise to complicate their arrangement. Can two people accustomed to keeping their distance let the barricades around their hearts down long enough to fall in love?

If you would like to read the first chapter of A Bride for Keeps, go HERE.

Leah Courtney / Author & Editor

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