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Promise Me This [Kindle Edition]

Cathy Gohlke
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (289 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Michael Dunnagan was never supposed to sail on the Titanic, nor would he have survived if not for the courage of Owen Allen. Determined to carry out his promise to care for Owen’s relatives in America and his younger sister, Annie, in England, Michael works hard to strengthen the family’s New Jersey garden and landscaping business.

Annie Allen doesn’t care what Michael promised Owen. She only knows that her brother is gone—like their mother and father—and the grief is enough to swallow her whole. As Annie struggles to navigate life without Owen, Michael reaches out to her through letters. In time, as Annie begins to lay aside her anger that Michael lived when Owen did not, a tentative friendship takes root and blossoms into something neither expected. Just as Michael saves enough money to bring Annie to America, WWI erupts in Europe. When Annie’s letters mysteriously stop, Michael risks everything to fulfill his promise—and find the woman he’s grown to love—before she’s lost forever.


Editorial Reviews

Review

"This dramatic and heart-wrenching interpretation by two-time Christy Award winner Gohlke (William Henry Is a Fine Name;  I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires) will enthrall fans of character-driven CF and readers who enjoy Francine Rivers."--Library Journal

Taking a break from work to watch the Titanic set sail on its maiden voyage, Michael Dunnagan meets passenger Owen Allen and decides to stow away in hopes of convincing Owen to let him join his uncle’s business in America. But the so-called unsinkable ship strikes an iceberg, and a dying Owen extracts a promise from Michael that he will care for Owen’s relatives in America and his sister Annie, still in England. Annie can’t bear the thought that Michael lived when her brother was lost, but the two develop a friendship through the letters they exchange. When World War I breaks out and Annie’s letters stop, Michael drops everything to find the woman he has come to love.VERDICT: No matter how many times the Titanic’s sinking has been depicted in film and in print, the 1912 maritime tragedy continues to fascinate us. This dramatic and heart-wrenching interpretation by two-time Christy Award winner Gohlke (William Henry Is a Fine Name; I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires) will enthrall fans of character-driven CF and readers who enjoy Francine Rivers. (Library Journal)

One afternoon, young Michael Dunnagan steals away from his job to see the Titanic off. Through a sudden turn of events, he meets Owen Allen, a young man off to America to help his uncle in a gardening business. After a series of deceptions, Michael, who is not supposed to be on the ship, boards the Titanic, hoping to follow Owen to America and join him in this new business venture. Owen has left behind his sister, Annie, promising her that he will call for her once he is settled in America. When the Titanic sinks, Owen dies and asks Michael to take care of his sister. Annie and Michael begin a correspondence that at first is friendly, but soon turns romantic. When WWI intervenes, it appears that the two may have lost each other because of various circumstances on both sides of the Atlantic, but love and grace prevail in the end. Two-time Christy Award winner Gohlke tells a gripping tale of sacrifice, loss, love, and hope against the setting of familiar historical events; the loss of the Titanic marks its centennial in 2012. (Publishers Weekly)

Review

Stunning. Simply one of the best— if not most powerful—books I have ever read. (Julie Lessman, author of A Heart Revealed)|A story of hopes lost and found, of dreams surrendered and reborn, that blossoms with warmth and quiet power in a priceless portrayal of undeserved grace. (Siri Mitchell, author of A Heart Most Worthy)

Product Details

  • File Size: 2068 KB
  • Print Length: 417 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (January 20, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00724LJ0W
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #65,587 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
When a book cover captures my attention, and then the synopsis also piques my interests, I'm sold--I must read the book! Which is why I instantly jumped at the chance to read award-winning author Cathy Gohlke's newest release. In my opinion, Promise Me This is not a book you can just devour in one sitting. It's a book to be read slowly, with characters to be savored and a story to be treasured.

From the very beginning, I was swept away by this poignant story of Annie and Michael. And while I wasn't fond of Annie in the first part of the book, as I watched her change throughout the years after the disaster of the Titanic, I grew to love her self-sacrificing character. Both Annie and Michael go through so much in Promise Me This that at the end of the book, as the last page is fast approaching, all you hope for is that they get their `happily ever after'! And while the ending wasn't what I thought it'd be, I was still content with how we leave the characters.

There were so many twists and turns in Promise Me This--just when I thought things were looking up for these two, something huge would happen that hurls them straight into the path of danger and separation. Towards the end, there were several convenient "coincidences", but also some surprises, too.

When I finally read the last page, I didn't want to leave Annie and Michael! I closed the book, wishing there had been an epilogue of where these two were a few years after the book ended. That's how real these characters were to me, and how much danger and turmoil they had been through in this 400 page book.

When you begin Promise Me This, be prepared to experience a story that will touch your heart in more ways than one!

I reviewed this book for Tyndale House Publishing. It was not required that I give a positive review, but solely to express my own thoughts and opinions of this book, which I have done.
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52 of 62 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars very, very long April 2, 2012
By Amber
Format:Paperback
Topping out at 400 pages, I felt like this book took me a life time to read. Maybe it was the almost exasperating way the two main characters seek and lose each other time and again. Or possibly it was the over the top evil aunt whose hatred for Annie was ridiculously huge. I am not saying this book doesn't have its good parts. I truly enjoyed the Titantic scenes and the author's well done job with the war description. And the very brief ending was so heart-warming it was almost worth the 400 pages to get there. Would I recommend this book to a friend? If that person had alot of time to read and wasn't looking for a fast paced story line, then yes, I'd recommend.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great! January 17, 2012
Format:Paperback
Wow. Cathy packed so much into this book! From the Titanic to zeppelin raids, she kept me surprised with every turn of the page. Near the end of the book, just when I thought everything was going to turn out ok, she threw in another twist. Then another. I really had no idea if the final outcome would end to my satisfaction!

Love, hate, bitterness, guilt, fear, grace, and forgiveness - it's all in there! Promise Me This put me into past-midnight-reading-mode for two nights straight.

Loved it.

*I received a free review copy in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine.*
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Be warned. This is not an average read! August 10, 2012
By G.C
Format:Paperback
Late at night, after turning the last page, I wrote my review with a heavy heart and tears in my eyes.
Merciful father, I think the one word that comes to mind is powerful.
I don't know about anyone else but a happy ending is one of the things I look for in a story. And with this one, I wasn't sure what to expect.
As things got intense - I mean INTENSE- emotionally, there were many times that I had to physically separate myself from the book. I felt like a swimmer, drowning in this pool of overflowing emotions, gasping for air and saying out loud more times than I could count...'' God help me, I can't go on.''
This is no small read.
Masterfully and carefully penned. Profound. Deep. Heartbreaking and heart wrenching .
I've never wept so much in a story (This is no joke, keep that tissue box seriously close if you're going to read this). There were times I felt SO frustrated, because there's a character in the novel whose behaviour is horrifying! I laughed out loud at times and my heart melted when I considered how inspiring many of these characters were.
There is a happy ending. The characters' developments, their maturities and their strengths are beautifully portrayed and the conclusion is just breathtaking.
I have to be honest, I don't think that I will pick this up again. The journey was really tough emotionally and if you're considering this book, maybe my opinion could help?
Get ready to immerse yourself into another time and another place.
Owen Allen, Michael, Annie, Maggie, Daniel, The Spragues... Such wonderful people and I am glad I got to know them.
Promise me this, A story of sacrificial love.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Savored Every Word March 27, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There's something so compelling about Cathy Gohlke's writing. Her stories are beautifully crafted, and her word choices are vivid, complementing the setting and the characterization. Promise Me This is truly one of the most beautiful books I've read in years. It's a twisted tale, leading the reader through several years of European and American history and is filled with romantic notions throughout. I've always been fascinated with the story of the Titanic, so those portions of the story captured my attention right away. What really drew me in, however, was the intense characterization. I found myself rooting for Michael and Annie, my heart pounding alongside theirs as the story moved forward from 1912 through the end of WWI. Though I'm a fast reader, I deliberately took my time with this book, only letting myself read a chapter or two a day. I wanted to savor every word. And savor, I did! By the time I reached the end, I realized I'd truly read a masterpiece!

I recommend a lot of great Christian books, but I can honestly say I would give this one ten stars if I had the option. Cathy deserves every star. So do Michael and Annie, who went through a lot to finally merge their hearts!

Kudos, Cathy! Can't wait to see what other readers think of this one. I, for one, think it's brilliant!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars An awesome story of survival against all odds!
The only thing I disliked about this book was that I had to let several days go by between evenings of reading ... Just didn't have time to read daily. Read more
Published 16 days ago by SusieMcQueen
5.0 out of 5 stars Contrasting personalities
Owen Allen was kind and loving and well known for his ability to make beautiful gardens. He loved his sister and tried to protect her from the evil aunt who had only anger and... Read more
Published 18 days ago by Janet Moody
5.0 out of 5 stars A Story of faith, love and choosing to survive
The story caused me to think about my faith in Jesus.. The characters in the story all had their own ways of showing love for their"brother" The reminder that out of despair... Read more
Published 20 days ago by Kendall Tutein
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
A real page turner.... Loved the way the story flowed. I look forward to reading more of this author.
Published 24 days ago by Jean Armstrong
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great, Authentic Read
I am a student of the Titanic and the early 20th century and thoroughly enjoyed this book, both for the love story and for the backdrop of the War and the authentic stories - like... Read more
Published 27 days ago by D. Doiron
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Book
This was an entertaining and well-written book. I enjoyed it, and I look forward to reading more of Ms. Gohke's books.
Published 1 month ago by K. Shelby
3.0 out of 5 stars Loved the idea of the story but there was a ...
Well written. Loved the idea of the story but there was a lot of build up and drama for an anti-climatic ending. It just kind of ended.
Published 1 month ago by Alexis Zendejas
5.0 out of 5 stars Reaches far beyond the Titanic disaster. Very well-edited!
Perfection in editing! The Titanic disaster consumed a small portion of this novel -- but the story was based in ramifications of that event. Read more
Published 1 month ago by zzz
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story.
Couldn't stop reading it. Great story.
Published 1 month ago by cathy sacco
2.0 out of 5 stars I wouldn't recommend this book
I wouldn't recommend this book. After all the main characters go through to be together, it just ends. I ended up just skimming the last 100 pages. I was very disappointed.
Published 1 month ago by Heather
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More About the Author

Cathy Gohlke is the two-time Christy Award-winning author of the critically acclaimed novels Saving Amelie, Band of Sisters, Promise Me This (listed by Library Journal as one of the best books of 2012), William Henry Is a Fine Name, and I Have Seen Him in the Watchfires (listed by Library Journal as one of the best books of 2008), which also won the American Christian Fiction Writers' Book of the Year Award.
Cathy has worked as a school librarian, drama director, and director of children's and education ministries. When not traipsing the hills and dales of historic sites, she, her husband, and their dog, Reilly, divide their time between Northern Virginia and their home on the banks of the Laurel Run in Elkton, Maryland. Visit her website at www.cathygohlke.com

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