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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on December 16, 2012
I enjoyed the way Janet and Jillian intertwined the two stories and two ladies who meet on a train going to Montana to meet their mail order husbands who turn out to be men who haven't been honest with them in their letters. As I have read stories like this in the past, I have put myself in the shoes of women like them and thought I could never do this! The unknown would be too much "mystery" for me! Thankfully, these two women find two men who truly love them for who they are and want to make a life and a family with them. That wasn't easy in those days for a mail order bride. Both Christina and Annabelle had nowhere else to turn for a family of their own but were loving and kind women. Thanks, Janet and Jillian for a holiday book that makes you wants to curl up on a cold day and be transported back in time - for just a little while at least!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon December 6, 2012
I liked aspects of both books, of both of the female protagonists and both of the male ones, but I found parts of the book irritating. Christina, a mail order bride, is sort of downtrodden in the beginning of her story, and her intended may or may not be all she'd hoped for. Additionally, the marshal, who seems to pop up frequently to help her, does seem to be all she might have hoped for. The story then meanders through with one hard luck episode after the other until Christina finds her happy ending, as all do in Love Inspired books (and which the reader counts on). The problem is that Christina seems to be almost naive to the point of stupidity at times. It made it hard not want to shake some sense into her. I also had a hard time with the flow of the story and how quickly it was wrapped up at the end. It seemed abrupt. The story was not as satisfying as I would have liked.
The second story which features Christina's friend Annabelle had similar problems. The one difference is that the main character of Gabe was much more appealing. The story actually seemed to be more about him than Annabelle at the beginning, and that was not all bad because he was a truly nice guy. Gabe actually ended up as my favorite character out of the whole book. Annabelle started off as just kind of being there without much personality, but Gabe, and the love he felt for his brother's kids, garnered a lot of empathy from this reader. The kids, too. Annabelle....well, I just finished the book, and I can't really tell you a whole lot about her. I guess it just was not a compelling enough story to remember the details. Not a waste, but rather ho-hum.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 5, 2014
This book encompasses two sweet stories about mail order brides. They are both well written, with well drawn, relatable characters. The stories that unfold are sweet, inspiring, uplifting, and incorporate a Christian aspect that is nicely interwoven throughout the story, without being overwhelming. I loved both stories and would recommend them both to anyone who enjoys Christian romance novels, especially if you also like books with a mail-order bride theme. FYI, as you might expect, both stories are squeaky clean. Happy reading!


I loved this first story. Of the two, this one was my favorite. Christina Eberlee has had an extremely difficult life. Of late she's taken to sleeping in stalls, stables, in back doorways, or wherever she can find shelter. She hardly has enough money for food, much less lodgings. In desperation, Christina answers a mail-order bride ad, and travels west to get married.

While en route she meets another mail-order bride, Annabelle--the heroine of the second story. During one of the train stops, Christina is robbed and injured. Enter our hero, Elijah Gable, a sexy U.S. Marshall, who comes to Christina's assistance. There is an immediate attraction on the part of Elijah for Christina, and she can't help but hope that her intended is a man such as Elijah.

Coincidentally, Elijah and Christina are headed to the same town. Upon their arrival, when Christina's betrothed fails to meet her at the train station, Elijah once again comes to Christina's aid. Elijah accompanies Christina to a motel, and while on their way, he is called upon to help a small boy who was involved in an accident. As they work together to try to help this homeless child, a romance blossoms between the two. As you might expect, there is some difficulty with Christina's fiancé that the two must overcome before they an achieve their HEA.

This was a very emotive read for me. Christina is a very sympathetic character. I really felt true sorrow for her plight, the one thing Christina wanted more than anything else was a loving family. Her continued faith in God's plan for her life, even when it seemed impossible that she would have a happy life, was quite touching.

SNOWFLAKES for DRY CREEK by Janet Tronstad

Although I didn't like this story as much as I did the first, I still enjoyed it very much. Annabelle is a sweet character. She survived a fire which not only killed her father, but also caused her severe injuries, and left her destitute. In desperation, she answers a mail-order bride ad and travels west to get married.

Gabe Stone is the elder brother of Annabelle's intended, Adam. When Adam takes off, leaving a note saying he had changed his mind about getting married, he leaves his brother with the unpleasant task of informing Annabelle of his decision. Gabe and his niece and nephew meet Annabelle at the train station. Although Gabe had intended to immediately inform her of the situation, when he meets Annabelle he discovers that he is unwilling to give her news that will hurt her. Furthermore, Eliza and Daniel (Adam's children) badly want Annabelle to spend Christmas with them. Very quickly, Gabe realizes that he wants Annabelle to be happy, and decides to track Adam down and bring him back to marry Annabelle.

It doesn't take long for Annabelle to discover the truth--at least partially. She is uncertain of what to do, but doesn't really have a lot of options. Consequently, she agrees to stay with the Stone's over the Christmas holidays. Over the next few days, as they prepare for the holiday, Gabe's feelings for Annabelle develop. A relationship between seems impossible; however, as Annabelle is still technically Adam's fiancée. To add some tension to the plot, is a woman who wishes to have Eliza (a sweet little 3 year old tike) put up for adoption on the grounds that Adam is an unfit parent.

Although this wasn't quite as emotive as the first story--at least for me it wasn't--it is still very touching. I especially liked Gabe who suffered a lot of angst when he realized he had feelings for Annabelle, but was till honorably pursuing the course of getting his brother back, so that Adam could fulfill his obligation to Annabelle. I was particularly touched by the Christian aspect of this story, Gabe and Annabelle are both regular people, who hold strong to their faith, albeit with difficulty at times.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2013
I must say that I love both Jillian Hart and Janet Tronstad, so I have an affinity for their books. A HUGE thank you to both the authors since they sent me the book! I love it when they come together to write stories because I know we will get characters you can relate to and how you see the hand of God guiding them along their path, Christina and Annabelle's story are introduced to you at the very beginning. Two women coming from different backgrounds are united when they find out they are both mail ordered brides for Christmas. What both ladies don't know is that the very men they are promised to marry have issues of their own. In Christina's story immediate sparks fly with the handsome marshall she runs into on the train. Little does she know she won't be able to get away from him even when she gets off the train. The story of how they both come to trust each other through helping a poor orphan boy helps you get a glimpse into both her and the marshal's past. Only when she sees the true side of her intended come out, is she able to see that the marshal is the one she was meant to be with all along.
Annabelle's story is one of strength and sadness. She is ready to be a mother to two motherless children, but comes to find out that the man she was supposed to marry has run off and left the children with their handsome Uncle Gabe. Since she has no other place to go, she decides to stay and watch the children till he comes back to town so that she can face him. In the process she reveals a secret that she has kept from everyone except he intended....or so she thinks. When she realizes he never received the letter about her secret she doesn't know wether to trust the Gabe with that and her heart, or just leave all together. In the end, even though things were rough, she saw how God brought her into Gabe's life and the children's life for a reason.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 11, 2012
Mail-Order Holiday Brides by Jillian Hart & Janet Tronstad
Home for Christmas by Jillian Hart
Christina Eberlee is alone in the world and barley getting by. Being accepted by Tom Rutger as a mail-order bride is an answer to her prayers. Or is it? Not when every man, including Tom, is measured by the kindness of the handsome marshal she met on her way to Angel Falls, Montana. Christina's adventure includes meeting Annabelle, another mail-order bride who is headed for Dry Creek, Montana and Marshal Elijah Gable, a man who comes to her rescue more than once. Not to forget getting injured when a young ruffian steals her reticule.

Elijah had never thought he'd have a second chance at love, and maybe he don't. How can he tell his heart that this gal is already spoken for?

This was a heartwarming story that reminded me how these young woman who ventured off to marry men they never met....never knew what type of man was waiting at the end of their travels.

Be sure and check out Jillian's other historical books that take place in the quaint town of Angel Falls, Montana.

Snowflakes for Dry Creek by Janet Tronstad
Annabelle Hester finally had some hope in her life. She lost her mom at a young age and her dad had a bit of a temper and he was a big man. After he passed away and she was left with very little she decided to become a mail-order bride. Adam Stone had proposed and accepted her even with her weaknesses. Or so she thought. Instead of Adam she was met by his brother, Gabe. A big man, even bigger than her father. In her mind that equaled cruelty and caused her fear.

Gabe quickly fell in love with his niece and nephew. His brother on the other hand was acting like a horses behind. The day his brother's soon-to-be bride came to town....Adam left town. Gabe quickly finds himself having to explain to the woman that his brother didn't want her and fight off a local busybody who believes the children would be better off in any home but his.

Another great addition to Janet's Dry Creek Series. She brings in some old friends from some of her other Dry Creek historical books. A really enjoyable story that also gives a glimpse into how it must have felt to step off a train into a new place to marry someone you never met, and pray that they turn out to be kind and eventually someone who will love you.

This is the second time that Janet and Jillian have come together to bring us a Christmas story from their historical towns. If you haven't read it you may want to read their first book; Mail-Order Christmas Brides. I have read every book these two ladies have written and enjoyed them all.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 19, 2012
Home for Christmas

This is a wonderful Christmas story by Jillian Hart! Christina Eberlee and Annabelle Hester are mail-order brides who meet on the train taking them to their prospective husbands. Home for Christmas is Christina's story by Jillian Hart. She meets Elijah Gable, the marshal who tries to catch the boy that knocks Christina down as he's steeling her reticule on the train. The marshal can't catch the boy, but he knows Christina's arm is broken, no matter how much she denies it! Christina is just praying that her future husband who paid her way to him will be a good match. But will he be as good a catch as the marshal? And what about the boy that stole her reticule? This is one story that will grab you from the beginning and you won't be able to stop until you're finished. Don't miss this great Christmas story by Jillian Hart!

Snowflakes for Dry Creek

This is the second story in this wonderful Mail-Order Christmas Brides sequel. Annabelle Hester is on her way to Dry Creek to meet her future husband, Adam Stone. But, he sends his brother Gabe to pick her up at the station. Where has Adam run off to? How can Annabelle's story end happily if her promised husband doesn't want her? She has been told lies by Adam; can she trust his brother Gabe? This is a wonderful Christmas story by Janet Tronstad. Put your faith in God and everything will work out.

Both of these stories come with discussion questions at the end and are heartwarming Christmas stories.
Mail-Order Holiday Brides: Home for Christmas\Snowflakes for Dry Creek (Love Inspired Historical)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2012
Home for Christmas is the first story in the Mail-Order Holiday Brides. Told in a charming way, we learn to know Christina as she rides the train to Montana. Curl up by the fireplace with your choice of hot drink and meet Annabelle who is a fellow mail-Order bride also on her way to the Montana Territory from the Dakota Territories. A delightful, cozy short novel, to get you in the holiday spirit, complete with whirling snow and wood fires. Jillian Hart pens an endearing novel in an amazing way. I feel I know both Christina and the other residents in Angel Falls, but the handsome marshal is the one I am drawn to as he helps his neighbors, and even those who are not.

Snowflakes for Dry Creek is just as pleasing a town as Angel Falls, perhaps more so, because as readers of Janet Tronstad's Dry Creek series, we have learnt to love this town and her people. Here again, the story is told in a way that we fall more in love with Annabel and the brother of the man who asked her to come be his bride. These are easy novels to read, after a busy day of corraling sugar hyped children, cleaning up those scraps of gift wrap we missed earlier and putting away the last of the turkey dinner.

I enjoyed both, and will love gifting this book to a dear friend. Thanks to Janet Tronstad for sending me this book so I could read and review it. I thoroughly enjoyed it, though all she asked for was an honest review, not requiring a positive critique. The opinions stated are my own.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 11, 2012
I liked both stories very, very much. They both affirm how God can change circumstances WITHOUT our manipulation!

So often we judge people on their looks, body language, accent...but only God knows what is on the inside and sometimes lets us see some of that when it is important for us to do so. Before making a marriage vow, it is important! In Jill's tale, Christina's intended has a stone heart more interested in a slave than a mate. He has little compassion and even tried to pass himself as a Christian with no heart knowledge of Christ.

In Janet's story, Adam Stone is trying to fill his lonely life with drink and gambling, with no real purpose to be healed or help his children be healed from the loss of his wife. His brother, Gabe desires to know Christ better and learn about a new way of life. He appreciates the little things about people that are special, and shows it by display of giving and affection. Annabelle finds out that the kind of man she wants cares very little about scars on the outside, but what a woman is like on the inside.

Janet did a superb job on this latest book! She continues to grow with her intuitive descriptions of home, hearth, and family. Jill gave real life to the the feelings of her main characters in the first novella.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 10, 2012
Both of these mail-order bride stories are delightful, and certainly worth reading. I loved the way the two authors intertwined certain elements of the plot to help these novellas blend together perfectly.

Home for Christmas by Jillian Hart:
Christina Eberlee and Elijah Gable are wonderful characters, and, as usual, Jillian Hart truly lets you into their hearts and minds. The child in the story will grab your heartstrings, and the plot does a great job of demonstrating how pride, impulsiveness, and certain prejudices from the past can sometimes temporarily lead us away from the best that God has for us.

Snowflakes for Dry Creek by Janet Tronstad:
Gabe Stone and Anabelle Hester change and grow during the course of this story, and other characters who need to let the Lord work in their lives and change them don't choose to do so. That's one thing I liked about it; it seemed realistic because not everything in life will always turn out perfectly, especially for those who resist God's guidance. The two children also add a great deal to this holiday story. It shows that you can have a delightful Christmas without having the best of everything.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2012
Mail order bride stories set at Christmastime? Yay! And this book is even better because it includes two tales of holiday love. I was completely drawn into both Christina's and Annabelle's stories. And this time around, the men (Tom and Adam) are not honest in their correspondence with the women. So, even though things don't work out the way Christina and Annabelle expected, God worked it out His way - and what He had planned was even better than what they hoped for.
Jillian Hart and Janet Tronstad have written sweet and heart-warming Christmas stories that just make me want to curl up in with a blanket, drink hot chocolate, and read them all over again. I could just see the stories playing out in my mind.

Special thanks to author Janet Tronstad for sending me a free review copy. I was not obligated to write a positive review. This review is my honest opinion.
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