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The Timeless Love Romance Collection: Love Prevails in Nine Historical Romances Paperback – August 1, 2015
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About the Author
DIANNE CHRISTNER lives in New River, Arizona, where life sizzles in the summer when temperatures soar above 100 degrees as she writes from her air-conditioned home office. She enjoys the desert life, where her home is nestled in the mountains and she can watch quail and the occasional deer, bobcat, or roadrunner. Dianne was raised Mennonite and works hard to bring authenticity to Mennonite fiction. She now worships at a community church. She’s written over a dozen novels, most of which are historical fiction. She gets caught up in research having to set her alarm to remember to switch the laundry or start dinner. But her husband of forty-plus years is a good sport. They have two married children, Mike and Rachel, and five grandchildren, Makaila, Elijah, Vanson, Ethan, and Chloe. She welcomes you to visit her website at http://www.diannechristner.net
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A UK reader I'm used to historical romance meaning regency and there are only so many variations on that theme. That meant I was absolutely fascinated by the stories here which showed elements of American history and society I knew nothing about. From the back drop of the Grand Canyon and the history of Harvey Girls, to the 1932 Olympics, or to a CCC camp, I felt that each story was introducing me to a new aspect of American culture and I learned something new along the way.
As this was an anthology collection some of the stories spoke to me more than others. Sometimes I connected with the characters and other times it was the setting that I loved. I posted brief thoughts on each story as I went along.
It's worth mentioning as well that as I had requested this by a happy accident I was unaware that this was a Christian Romance collection until I got started. Despite my Mum being a vicar I've never read anything from this genre before. I've done supernatural, clean, small town but never Christian. For others who haven't come across it before it simply means that instead of "following their hearts", the characters will pray and ask God if this is what He wants for them. Also, handsome and rich don't always dictate the rules of attraction. Godly and living a simple life often prevails. If you aren't a Christian still go ahead and read this. The stories aren't preachy and the Christian aspect leads to good conflict between characters desires and what is actually best for them. The Christian overtones also lend nicely to the historical settings as these were often every day concerns. There is kissing by the way so don't think you're going to be starved of passion.
As its an anthology its not really meant to be read in one go. I would have enjoyed this more if I had sampled it and mixed it around longer reads. I did enjoy it and am now intrigued by this genre. Will be looking out for others in this series as well.
These novellas range from turn of the twentieth century to post World War II, and there is at least one story that takes on each era of the time covered: post World War I, the Depression, and post WW II. The issues and difficulties of living through these eras are plainly portrayed and the authors have done a great job of pulling their stories together.
One of the stories was quite thought provoking for me--Finding Yesterday by Jennifer Rogers Spinola, because she included in her setting the Civilian Conservation Corps and the work projects that program sponsored. I was talking about this with a friend of mine yesterday, and I asked her why our welfare recipients are not involved in something like this. I feel that handing people money month after month without their needing to earn it has demolished the national work ethic. Our society has become one where we can hold our hand out and expect someone else to fill it. We are too entitled. (Oops, I just veered onto my soap box.) I think Jennifer did an excellent job of showing how working for something fills the need to be productive.
I liked every one of these stories and can honestly recommend the collection to any of my friends. Four Strong Stars.
My thanks to Barbour Books for allowing me to read this book and present my honest review.
I enjoyed all of these stories, some more than others. Even for that, each one gives a little something that makes it "timeless", from simple superstitions to finding love in memories, to love and wealth, to adventure amongst strangers to finding an old love...etc. They all represent what love is: beyond physical appearances, beyond wealth, beyond struggles and beyond class.
For my full review of this book, other book reviews and a monthly book giveaway, please check out my site at: http://justcommonly.blogspot.com/2015/08/timeless-love-romance-collection.html
NOTE: I received a complimentary e-copy of this book from the publisher, Barbour Publishing through Net Galley for an honest review.
A Valentine for Prudence by Darlene Mindrup
From Fannie to Feast by Pamela Kaye Tracy
Armed and Dangerous by Dianne Christner
The Richest Knight by Nancy J Farrrier
Shelter from the Storm by Darlene Mindrup
Olympic Hopes by Lynn A Coleman
Beyond the Memories by DiAnn Mills
Finding Yesterday by Jennifer Rogers Spinola
Goodie Goodie by Tamela Hancock Murray.
I enjoyed every one of these stories by DiAnn Mills's Beyond the Memories was my favorite of them all.