THESE HEALING HILLS, by Ann H. Gabhart *REVIEW* Lonestar Book Blogger Tour
THESE HEALING HILLS
Date of Publication: September 5, 2017
Number of Pages: 368
Bestselling Author Transports Readers to the Appalachian Mountains for Adventure and Healing
Packed with history, These Healing Hills by bestselling author Ann H. Gabhart introduces readers to the fascinating and difficult life of frontier nursing.
When the soldier Francine Howard planned to marry after WWII writes to tell her he is in love with a woman in England, Francine is devastated and in need of a change. She seeks a fresh start in the Appalachian Mountains, training to be a nurse midwife for the Frontier Nursing Services.
It is in these mountains that Francine crosses paths with Ben Locke, a soldier still very much suffering from the horrors of war. With his future shrouded in as much mist as his beloved mountains, he’s at a loss when it comes to envisioning what’s next for his life.
“Reading These Healing Hills is like wrapping up in a beloved quilt and stepping back in time. Ann H. Gabhart captures a fascinating slice of Appalachian history in this tale of a mountain midwife and a soldier, bringing it to life as only a native Kentuckian can. Poignant and romantic, witty and wise, with enduring spiritual truths, this is my favorite novel of hers to date.”
—Laura Frantz, author of A Moonbow Night
“What a wonderful story! Filled with true-to-life characters (including some four-footed ones) and fascinating historical details, These Healing Hills is a beautifully written, heartwarming story of life in the Appalachian Mountains at the end of the Second World War. Ann Gabhart combines vivid descriptions, meticulous research, and a deep understanding of the human heart to create a story that will linger in readers’ memories long after the last page is turned. This is a book to savor, not just once, but over and over. A true keeper.”
—Amanda Cabot, bestselling author of A Stolen Heart
“Ann H. Gabhart delivers a rich tale set in Kentucky’s Appalachian Mountains at the close of World War II. Francine buries the painful loss of the man she loves beneath the difficult work of a frontier nurse-midwife. The mountain people touch a place deep in her heart, and she gladly sacrifices the life she always wanted in order to serve them. But can she ever be truly happy among the hills and hollows where modern medicine often gives way to ancient folk cures? These Healing Hills is a fascinating and beautifully crafted story that I highly recommend.”
—Virginia Smith, bestselling author of The Amish Widower
“You are sure to enjoy this endearing story of love lost and found in the enchanting hills of Kentucky.”—Jan Watson, author of the Troublesome Creek series
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Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several Shaker novels—The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted—as well as Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, Love Comes Home, Words Spoken True, and The Heart of Hollyhill series. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky.
"No one comes here by accident." --Frontier Nurse Saying
I loved this book. And, much like the mantra of the frontier nurses, I know I didn't come to it by accident, either. In fact, I rather think that anyone who is compelled to read this book will come away feeling the same. After all, when looking for inspirational fiction, the title itself accurately portrays what a reader will encounter with this story: new starts after a time of reflection, and lives that encounter healing after hardship, with a soft dose of biblical wisdom naturally mixed into the character's thoughts and conversation, much like life as many still know it.
Nurse Francine Howard is the kind of woman that I could be friends with in real life. Not the type to mope about after a breakup, she chooses a new path that takes her away from the hurt and into hard work that helps her focus on others, while finding her own strength. Meanwhile, soldier Ben Locke has to re-encounter his home with fresh--though war weary-- eyes. Do either of them belong in the Appalachians? Is that really even the question?
Regardless of the reason the book was timely in my life, this book is timely in a number of broad ways. First, a great number of readers have digested "Hillbilly Elegy," by J.D. Vance, so we know the rest of the story a bit more intimately than we would have even a couple of years ago. Also, many of us, regardless of our political beliefs and news channel(s) of choice, are in need of a bit of healing over the divisiveness afflicting our country and world these days, not to mention the natural disasters. Books like "These Healing Hills" help us step back and re-evaluate, and know that there is hope after all. Especially well written and edited books like this one.
(BONUS: SWEET DOG STORY!! See him on the cover below?! Also, check out the short book trailer inserted below my picture. And don't forget to enter the giveaway!)
You have a new fan, Ann H. Gabhart, and Revell (a division of Baker Publishing Group). Thank you for the review copy in exchange for an honest opinion.
GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!
Copy of These Healing Hills + The Kentucky Snack Basket (11 items including a Derby Pie Tart, Bourbon Pecan Brittle, Bourbon Chocolates, Spiced Pretzels, Modjeskas, Coffee, Snack Mix, Candy Bar, Caramel Corn, and a Horseshoe from Churchill Downs!)
Copy of These Healing Hills + $25 Barnes & Noble Gift Card
Copy of These Healing Hills + $10 Starbucks Gift Card
September 5 - 14, 2017
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