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With This Kiss Historical Collection, Five Beautiful Christian Stories By Beloved Historical Romance Authors

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If you love history— and romance— you’re going to love this delightful novella collection! Join in as these multi-published, award-winning and best-selling Christian authors transport you to yesteryear, when times were tough and life was far more simple… in some ways! Sample the authors you’ve loved for years and maybe add new favorites to your list, for one low price. And If you love history— and romance— you’re going to love this delightful novella collection! Join in as these multi-published, award-winning and best-selling Christian authors transport you to yesteryear, when times were tough and life was far more simple… in some ways! Sample the authors you’ve loved for years and maybe add new favorites to your list, for one low price. And in each one of these lovely stories, you’ll see the hope and grace of new beginnings and second chances because who among us doesn’t deserve a second chance? Four delightful romance novels, and this collection has a special Bonus Feature! Written by Mary Connealy "Closer Than Brothers" will transport the reader into Andersonville Prison, where this prequel sets the stage for Mary's "Trouble in Texas" heroes. How they met, how they survived... all leading to how they become heroes, later on. We hope you love this collection as much as we do! “His Beloved Bride” by Ruth Logan Herne: Phillip Dickinson’s inheritance requires him to be married with a child. He’s got neither on his South Dakota claim. Grace Hawthorne lost her mean-spirited husband in the blizzards of ‘88, and her claim shack in a spring fire. With a newborn baby, a marriage of convenience seems right and wrong. When hardship comes their way, can faith, hope and love keep them together? “Meeting in the Middle” by Pam Hillman Having lost his young son, widowed cotton farmer Curt Parker is determined to protect his two little girls from harm. His new neighbor, Alaina Garland, needs help to save the farm she runs alone. Can these two meet in the middle to take care of his children as well as work the fields to save their land? “The Innkeeper's Promise” by Cara Lynn James-- Lydia, an inexperienced yet determined innkeeper, tries her best to convince Dane, her absentee co-owner, to keep their failing hotel operating despite his need for a quick sale. Will their love grow strong enough for the ambitious Dane to change all his plans and stay with Lydia? “Grace Like Rain” by Julie Lessman Because of Blake “The Rake” McClare’s notorious reputation, receptionist Patience Peabody steers clear of the lovable rogue attorney at the law firm in which they both work. Until a rare thunderstorm brings them together in a love soaked with the grace of God and sparked with a little lightning of its own. "Closer Than Brothers: by Mary Connealy: The heroes of the Trouble in Texas series met in Andersonville Prison during the war. What they went through, what it took to survive has created a bond between them. When one of the friends needs help, the others come a’running. They have a bond that is closer than brothers. This novella is the story of how they met in Andersonville. It’s not a comedy, it’s not a romance, but the fires that forged this friendship in the darkest days of the Civil War make the Trouble in Texas series bigger and better. I hope you enjoy the story.


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If you love history— and romance— you’re going to love this delightful novella collection! Join in as these multi-published, award-winning and best-selling Christian authors transport you to yesteryear, when times were tough and life was far more simple… in some ways! Sample the authors you’ve loved for years and maybe add new favorites to your list, for one low price. And If you love history— and romance— you’re going to love this delightful novella collection! Join in as these multi-published, award-winning and best-selling Christian authors transport you to yesteryear, when times were tough and life was far more simple… in some ways! Sample the authors you’ve loved for years and maybe add new favorites to your list, for one low price. And in each one of these lovely stories, you’ll see the hope and grace of new beginnings and second chances because who among us doesn’t deserve a second chance? Four delightful romance novels, and this collection has a special Bonus Feature! Written by Mary Connealy "Closer Than Brothers" will transport the reader into Andersonville Prison, where this prequel sets the stage for Mary's "Trouble in Texas" heroes. How they met, how they survived... all leading to how they become heroes, later on. We hope you love this collection as much as we do! “His Beloved Bride” by Ruth Logan Herne: Phillip Dickinson’s inheritance requires him to be married with a child. He’s got neither on his South Dakota claim. Grace Hawthorne lost her mean-spirited husband in the blizzards of ‘88, and her claim shack in a spring fire. With a newborn baby, a marriage of convenience seems right and wrong. When hardship comes their way, can faith, hope and love keep them together? “Meeting in the Middle” by Pam Hillman Having lost his young son, widowed cotton farmer Curt Parker is determined to protect his two little girls from harm. His new neighbor, Alaina Garland, needs help to save the farm she runs alone. Can these two meet in the middle to take care of his children as well as work the fields to save their land? “The Innkeeper's Promise” by Cara Lynn James-- Lydia, an inexperienced yet determined innkeeper, tries her best to convince Dane, her absentee co-owner, to keep their failing hotel operating despite his need for a quick sale. Will their love grow strong enough for the ambitious Dane to change all his plans and stay with Lydia? “Grace Like Rain” by Julie Lessman Because of Blake “The Rake” McClare’s notorious reputation, receptionist Patience Peabody steers clear of the lovable rogue attorney at the law firm in which they both work. Until a rare thunderstorm brings them together in a love soaked with the grace of God and sparked with a little lightning of its own. "Closer Than Brothers: by Mary Connealy: The heroes of the Trouble in Texas series met in Andersonville Prison during the war. What they went through, what it took to survive has created a bond between them. When one of the friends needs help, the others come a’running. They have a bond that is closer than brothers. This novella is the story of how they met in Andersonville. It’s not a comedy, it’s not a romance, but the fires that forged this friendship in the darkest days of the Civil War make the Trouble in Texas series bigger and better. I hope you enjoy the story.

30 review for With This Kiss Historical Collection, Five Beautiful Christian Stories By Beloved Historical Romance Authors

  1. 5 out of 5

    Brittany

    (This review is for the novella GRACE LIKE RAIN by Julie Lessman) Grace Like Rain is a novella that can be read as a stand alone story for those who haven't read the Heart of San Francisco series. But for those who have read the other full length novels in the series, this novella is really one that you do not want to miss and should be read after the other three books. It was so wonderful to return to the McClare family and watch as Blake's story was finally told. And Blake "the Rake" McClare cer (This review is for the novella GRACE LIKE RAIN by Julie Lessman) Grace Like Rain is a novella that can be read as a stand alone story for those who haven't read the Heart of San Francisco series. But for those who have read the other full length novels in the series, this novella is really one that you do not want to miss and should be read after the other three books. It was so wonderful to return to the McClare family and watch as Blake's story was finally told. And Blake "the Rake" McClare certainly had quite a story! I loved catching up with the characters from previous books and seeing a bit of their happily-ever-after tales being lived out. But, what impressed me the most with this novella is simply how much story the author was able to pack into Grace Like Rain. The characters are deep and their emotions tugged at my heart. Blake is a great character to read about because his path in life from "rake" to "redeemed" is such a drastic change. There was amazing emotional and spiritual growth for Blake through this novella and his story really rounds out the series for me. This author writes incredible passion into her stories, but also illustrates God's undeniably beautiful grace that is extended to us all. I loved this book from start to finish!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    WITH THIS KISS HISTORICAL COLLECTION - 4.00 stars overall His Beloved Bride by Ruth Logan Herne - 4.10 stars - rated mild pg13 - Historical western prairie romance. Heartwarming & sweet, but kinda hokey. Romance and characters were not well-developed or all that believable; maybe due to short length? This didn't "grab" me like her contemporary novella "Longing for a Miracle", which was in 2014's Hope for the Holidays Collection. I loved that particular story so much that I purchased some of her f WITH THIS KISS HISTORICAL COLLECTION - 4.00 stars overall His Beloved Bride by Ruth Logan Herne - 4.10 stars - rated mild pg13 - Historical western prairie romance. Heartwarming & sweet, but kinda hokey. Romance and characters were not well-developed or all that believable; maybe due to short length? This didn't "grab" me like her contemporary novella "Longing for a Miracle", which was in 2014's Hope for the Holidays Collection. I loved that particular story so much that I purchased some of her full length novels. Meeting in the Middle by Pam Hillman - 4.45 stars - rated mild pg13 - Sweet story of love, family, hard work, faith and trust. Adorable little girls with yummy, protective dad. Romance is gentle; kisses are sweet and scrumptious. This story also highlighted the beauty, simplicity and difficulties of life on an 1800's farm; the fulfillment of hard work and realizing your dreams. (Having grown up on a modern day farm, I can attest that it's still tough work, yet so pure, honest and "real".) The Innkeeper's Promise by Cara Lynn James - dnf - Can't make it through first chapter. Writing style is just not for me. Things don't seem to fit. Way too sappy for me. Grace Like Rain by Julie Lessman - 3.00-3.50 stars?? - pg13 - Where to begin? This is my first Julie Lessman story. It very well might be my last. Or not. ??? As I was reading this collection I scribbled a few short notes for each of the stories. The notes for Julie's novella took up EIGHT FULL SIZE sheets of paper!! That only happens when a book is driving me crazy. I think I'm gonna have a love/hate thing with Ms. Lessman. (Kind of reminded me of my one experience with Marcia Lynn McClure.) Julie's writing style flows so much better than other authors, but she's just too ... too ... ?? ... over-the-top? ... syrupy? ... flowery? ... cheesy?? ... drama queenesque?? If the heroine bit her lush, full, rose-colored, trembling lip one more time or peered up with fawn-colored, hazelnut, umber, caramel, coffee-colored, mahogany (BROWN for crying out loud!!!) eyes through her dark, full, slow sweep of sooty lashes one more time!!!! ..... The kindle almost went out the window into the nearest 4ft snowdrift!!! ..... I will try and spare everyone the complete eight pages worth. Here are some (a lot actually) of my scribbled notes & quotes as I read along: (view spoiler)[I can't figure out what gets more nauseating and vivid descriptions, her BROWN eyes, her blushing cheeks or her luscious squirming lips. (Truly. They "squirmed"!!) - - - "Her soft and husky giggle floated in the air, unlike any he'd heard from the lips of a woman before." (Oh geez! She's giggling and it's husky?!? Try to imagine that sound. Kinda creepy actually. No wonder he'd never heard anything like that from a woman before!) - - - "mischief lit her fawn-colored eyes" - - - "She ducked her head in modesty while a soft blush--the exact shade of the deep rose that lined her pale pink lips--bloomed on her cheeks." (Seriously?? The exact shade? Bloomed?) - - - "enough spark in her eyes to light the crystal chandelier" - - - "a delicate mole on the curve of her cheekbone lifting when she smiled." (Can you say melanoma?? All I could think of was the John Candy movie, Uncle Buck.) - - - "the fringe of dark lashes flickered briefly over wide eyes the color of the heated caramel Rosie drizzled over her apple pie." (yum! time to take a dessert break!) - - - At somebody's wedding reception the Hero looks at himself in the mirror behind the bar and "assessed his appearance with a critical air, grateful for broad shoulders that tapered to a slim waist ... his gaze traveled from dark auburn hair he hated ... down to that annoying cleft in his chin." (REALLY?? What manly man rogue is grateful for his own slim waist, has any idea what a cleft is, or cares what color his hair is, much less having a clue that it's auburn and not just brown?!) - - - "those wide and innocent eyes, heavily fringed with soft sable lashes" - - - "deep pools of the darkest, richest honey" (eyes again! surprise!) - - - "her rose-colored lips, lush and full" - - - "those sooty lashes flipped up for the first time, revealing a glint of fire in those intoxicating eyes" - - - "the saucer eyes a soft brown, like his coffee with just a touch of cream" (hmmm...definitely time for a coffee break!) - - - "and the lips--soft, full, and parted in tremulous breaths." - - - "her eyes softened into molten chocolate" (oooh yummy! time for another break from this book!) - - - "a squirm of her lips" (see! told ya they squirmed!) - - - "teeth tugging the edge of her lip" - - - "her teeth grated her lip in that nervous nibble" - - - "D-dinner? With your f-family? B-but why? ... B-but we're only f-friends, and this will give them the wrong impression." (Seriously chick??!! You've been spending clandestine cozy hours with him and leading him on every day for over three months. And two paragraphs ago heat was pooling in your belly and your eyelids were fluttering closed as you longed for his kiss!!! NOW you're just "friends"?!) - - - No!! Just tell me no!!!.... Her shoe catches and she trips out of his car and falls sprawling into his arms to lay flush against his chest. Commence lots of ragged breathing and jolts of fire and eyelids sheathing and quivering, helpless against the draw of lips. .... Oh please!!!! I think if the whole previous story hadn't been such cornball, then one sappy romantic kissing scene would have been acceptable and possibly yummy. But by this point I can only roll my blue, green, hazel, sage, stormy ocean-colored eyeballs!! .... And what happened after this soul-searing kiss? .... "Her teeth tugged at the edge of her smile." Aaaayyyy!!! .... Oh my gosh! Several kisses later "her teeth teased at her lip" again. "B-B-B-But I thought you only wanted to be my friend." .... Oh save me now!!! What a stupid twit!! Where has she been for this whole story??? Evidently "off screen", which is where I wish I'd been! - - - Oh no!! Really?? The twist at the end is just too.... too... too....???...really???....can you say melodrama?? (Actually, if the rest of the book hadn't been so over-the-top, this little twist would be easier to accept and possibly a good addition to the book.) Okay. So I was actually enjoying the last 2-3 chapters until ... "dark lashes fanning closed while he bent to fondle her lips with his own." .... Fondle. Her. Lips. ?!?!?! - - - STOP already with the overload of details! Could we not just be given a breather from the syrup every once in a while? Please? It's like when you go into someone's home and everything is classy, clean, well-decorated except they've added soooo very many little knickknacks/doo-dads everywhere you feel as if you're becoming slightly ADD because you just can't handle the overwhelming plethora of stuff!! - - - I wanted to quit reading, yet I couldn't.....it had become a bit of a game to see just how much sap is possible in one story! I loved Blake, our rogue Hero; and his first experience with the kids at the Asylum (sweet for him and them). He starts to see that there is more to life then his self-centered existence. "God forgive me for the shallow life that I've lived." I like how he matures and takes responsibility. A flawed man redeemed by God. (Although, there's no reference to him giving his heart or his life to Christ. He just starts hanging out with the heroine and playing chess and going to church and "poof!" he's a praying man of faith. ????) Overall he's wonderful, but she's just too annoying. I liked his family. They're fun, witty and loving, just like him. I liked the heroine's grandfather. I pretty much liked everyone but the heroine, her twitchy self got on my last nerve. (Perhaps the only time I liked her was when she was playing piano for the kids at the Asylum.) (hide spoiler)] So .... should I live dangerously and try another Julie Lessman book?? Maybe. But it's gonna be awhile ..... I need to "de-syrup" myself first! Perhaps I'll go read a Georgette Heyer book and breathe a sigh of relief. Closer Than Brothers by Mary Connealy - 4.50 stars - pg13 - I had heard how wretchedly horrible the Fort Sumter Confederate prison camp in Andersonville, Georgia was. But this story made it REAL. It's powerful. Oh my gosh, two pages in and I love Vince. In this "hell-on-earth" prison he stood up for what's right, and was ready, content and fully expecting/hoping to die for doing so. He put all his hope in his Savior and the next life, since this one appeared to be about over. But God had other plans. Men quietly come out of nowhere to stand up with him against evil. Luke, "The Kid", from Texas (love him!). Jonas, called "The Parson", the outlaw turned preacher (his story....wow!....just wow!). I loved this heart wrenching story. I was moved by this story. Can't wait to read other books by Mary Connealy, including the full-length novels about these "brothers"

  3. 5 out of 5

    Julie Graves

    Grace Like Rain by Julie Lessman Blake “The Rake” McClare has avoided the altar for all of his 28 years. Enjoying his playboy existence, Blake has never wanted for female company. Patience Grace Peabody has successfully avoided being taken in by Blake’s charms. As secretary for the law firm that Blake is a part of she knows Blake’s reputation and is determined to not be part of the women that fall at Blake’s feet. When Blake sets his sights on Patience he becomes a changed man. Determined to wal Grace Like Rain by Julie Lessman Blake “The Rake” McClare has avoided the altar for all of his 28 years. Enjoying his playboy existence, Blake has never wanted for female company. Patience Grace Peabody has successfully avoided being taken in by Blake’s charms. As secretary for the law firm that Blake is a part of she knows Blake’s reputation and is determined to not be part of the women that fall at Blake’s feet. When Blake sets his sights on Patience he becomes a changed man. Determined to walk the straight and narrow in order to win her affections, Blake puts away his wandering ways and sets out to prove that a rake can change his ways and become a man wholly devoted to one woman when the right one comes along. As always Julie Lessman doesn’t disappoint in the steam-factor or in the drama factor. Even though this is a short story, Julie still packs in her signature “Passion with Purpose” and enough drama to cause the reader to have heart palpitations and doubt that we will get our Happily Ever After ending that we so desire. As always there is a spiritual thread that runs through the story. I always love that the characters in Julie’s books ultimately bend their knees to the Maker of heaven and earth. If you haven’t read any of Julie’s books before, I say it is time to start! His Beloved Bride by Ruth Logan Herne Grace is in desperate need of help. With a fever raging in her body she cannot take care of her newborn baby. Grace cries out to God and it seems like her prayers are answered. Phillip has spent his time buying land and developing his property. Now it is time for his Grandmother’s estate to be settled and in order for him to receive his inheritance he must be married and have a child. When Phillip hears about recently widowed Grace he heads out to her homestead with a proposition for her. When he arrives he finds her passed out from the fever and her newborn baby crying in hunger. Moved to care for these two pitiful souls he takes them to his home and gets the local midwife to check on the two. Grace agrees to Phillips suggestion of a marriage of convenience with the agreement for both of them that they would dissolve their union once the requirements for the inheritance have been met. Grace would be taken care of and Phillip would receive his inheritance. Phillip finds though that he likes having Grace and the baby around. Grace finds that not all men are cruel and that Phillip is a man to be trusted. Prairie life is hard though, and when tragedy strikes Phillip and Grace both wonder if their love can survive. I thought that His Beloved Bride was a sweet romance. I thought Grace and Phillip were perfect for each other and loved the way Phillip came in and rescued Grace and her baby and how he was so gentle with her. This is the first time I have read this author and it will probably not be the last. Meeting In The Middle by Pam Hillman Curt Parker is a widower with two daughters to take care of. His mule has just died and his fields are in need of plowing and planting. His neighbor Alaina Garland has a mule, but is in need of help getting her fields planted. The two strike up a deal to help each other out. Alaina would like to work alongside Curt while he is plowing. Insisting that his girls will always been within sight and they can keep a watch on them while they work. Curt insists that he can do all of the work and Alaina must stay at his home and take care of his daughters during the day. At an impasse Alaina agrees for a time and shows up every morning to take care of Curt’s daughters. She quickly falls in love with the girls and it isn’t long before Curt also captures her heart. Alaina is still insistent that she can help him and keep track of the girls, she is frustrated at Curt’s stubbornness. Is there some middle ground that these two can meet at to get the work finished? I enjoyed this story. Curt’s fears of leaving his girls unattended are very understandable. Once he learns to give that fear to the Lord things go a bit smoother between he and Alaina. Since this collection of short stories is called “With This Kiss” I have to mention that the kisses in this story are pretty smoldering! Once again I haven’t read this author before, but now I’ll have to look her up and try her books. The Innkeeper’s Promise by Cara Lynn James Lydia Barlow and Dane Paxton share ownership of The Mountain View Inn. Dane has been an absentee owner for the past several years. Now he is in need of some money to fund some other ventures he is working on. He wants Lydia to buy out his share. Unfortunately Lydia and her mother have not been very good stewards in keeping the books of the Inn. There is no money for Lydia to buy out Dane and in fact the Inn is at risk of being foreclosed on. A neighbor is very insistent about buying the Inn from Lydia and Dane and has given them a very good offer. Dane wishes to take the offer but Lydia has a promise to keep to her uncle who gave her and Dane the Inn. She definitely doesn’t want to sell to her neighbor and she is determined to try and save the Inn. Having had a crush on Dane for most of her growing up years Lydia is fighting her feelings for Dane and Dane is just now seeing Lydia in a romantic fashion. Will the two of them be able to come up with a plan to save the Inn? I thought the romance in this one was a little quick, but being a short story, things needed to be moved along and also some background had to be left out. We do find that Lydia has always harbored a desire for Dane to move back and help her with the Inn, but I still found that the path to romance was a bit quick. I did enjoy the setting of the story though. Love the idea of families spending lazy summer days at an Inn on a lake. Closer Than Brothers by Mary Connealy This is the story of 5 young men in a Confederate Prison camp during the Civil War. In the midst of sickness and danger they become fast friends who have each others backs. This is also a prequel to the author’s books The Kincaid Brides series and The Trouble in Texas series. I haven’t read any of the books in either one of these series. I have to actually say that when I read this was a story set in the Civil War I almost decided not to read it. While I loved the classic Gone with the Wind I’m just generally not a fan of stories set in this era of history. But it was the last book in this set of short stories and I wanted to be thorough in finishing what I started and being able to review all 5 of the stories. I definitely would love to pick up these series and read them after finishing the prequel. I would especially like to read Vince (The Invincible)’s story. And also see which one contains the rest of Callie’s story as we are kind of left hanging at the end of Closer Than Brothers. My Overall Impression of the Series: After finishing all of the stories in this collection I would have to say that I definitely would like to check out more from these authors. I have read all that Julie Lessman has written so I’m good to go there, but the rest of the authors are pretty new to me and so I will definitely have to look them up and purchase their full length novels. If you like short stories, and an abundance of romance then definitely check out this collection. I wrote the reviews in the order that I read the books. You can see that Julie Lessman was my priority(smiley face).

  4. 4 out of 5

    Dawn

    5 historical novellas, 4 romances and one that was about friendship. His Beloved Bride by Ruth Logan Hearne - Summary: In order for Phillip Dickinson to inherit his portion of his grandmother's estate, he must marry and have a child. He's only got about a month left to do that. Marriage had always been put on the back burner as he worked on building his ranch. Grace Hawthorne has a newborn baby and lost her husband over the winter. Then a fire destroyed her home. A marriage of convenience is what 5 historical novellas, 4 romances and one that was about friendship. His Beloved Bride by Ruth Logan Hearne - Summary: In order for Phillip Dickinson to inherit his portion of his grandmother's estate, he must marry and have a child. He's only got about a month left to do that. Marriage had always been put on the back burner as he worked on building his ranch. Grace Hawthorne has a newborn baby and lost her husband over the winter. Then a fire destroyed her home. A marriage of convenience is what's practical between Phillip and Grace, but can they find their way to love? My Thoughts: This was a cute story. I felt a little heartbroken for Grace when her baby got sick. The romance was a little unbelievable, but still it was cute. Rating 3.5 stars Meeting in the Middle by Pam Hillman - Summary: Curt Parker needs help getting his crops in as well as watching his young children. Alaina Garland is struggling to save her farm. When he offers a solution, he plant both fields and she watch his children, she's reluctant to do so. But as she gets to know his young daughters, Alaina finds herself captivated by both the children and their father. My Thoughts: This one was really sweet. I loved the kids. I also loved how protective Curt was of the girls. Rating 4 stars The Innkeeper's Promise by Cara Lynn James - Summary: Lydia is an inexperienced, but determined, innkeeper. Her mother has kept the bulk of inn's problems to herself. When Dane arrives back in town determined to sell his share of the inn, he's appalled at how deep in debt it is. As the two work together, they learn to join forces. My thoughts: This was my least favorite of all of the novellas. I really found it boring and very unbelievable. The characters weren't developed at all. Rating 2.5 stars Grace Like Rain by Julie Lessman - Summary: Blake McClare is the solitary bachelor in his group of friends. He's watched his two best friends, his uncle, two of his sisters, his cousin, and his mother all marry within a span of two years. Feeling a little unsettled, he wants to change his ways. Patience Peabody is the receptionist at Blake's law firm. She's aware of Blake's reputation and tries to avoid falling for the lovable rogue. When a thunderstorm strands them, they each begin to see a new side of the other. My thoughts: I LOVED this novella. I've been wanting Blake's story for AGES. And I was not disappointed. I loved how he finally grew up and that he was willing to take responsibility for his past actions. Rating 5 stars Closer Than Brothers by Mary Connealy - Summary: Vince, Luke, Dare, Jonas, and Big John spent time in Andersonville Prison together and became part of the Regulators. They share a bond that was closer than brothers and supersedes friendship. This is how the story of how they met and became family. My thoughts: I loved reading how Vince, Luke, Dare, Jonas, and Big John came to be friends. I also loved Callie and Seth's story as well. This novella is a great addition to the Trouble in Texas Series and the Kincaid Brides. Rating 4 stars Overall rating of the book - 4 stars

  5. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie Roof

    From the pen of award-winning author Julie Lessman comes the beautiful novella sequel to The Heart of San Francisco series of the McClare family: "Grace Like Rain". The story that many readers have been waiting for, that of son Blake, "the Rake", McClare - Jr. Associate Counsel in his uncle Logan McClare's law firm - and Blake's assistant, Patience Grace "Gracie" Peabody. Set in 1905 San Francisco, "Grace Like Rain" begins with a literal bang - of thunder - prompting Patience's spill of hot coffe From the pen of award-winning author Julie Lessman comes the beautiful novella sequel to The Heart of San Francisco series of the McClare family: "Grace Like Rain". The story that many readers have been waiting for, that of son Blake, "the Rake", McClare - Jr. Associate Counsel in his uncle Logan McClare's law firm - and Blake's assistant, Patience Grace "Gracie" Peabody. Set in 1905 San Francisco, "Grace Like Rain" begins with a literal bang - of thunder - prompting Patience's spill of hot coffee on Blake, attired in a white shirt. The recurring episodes of spilled coffee between the two are but one touch of humor in this delightful story: you'll laugh at the antics of Miss Behave, the parrot; the articulate manner and bottle-thick glasses of 7 year old Eugene Horatio Templeton, a blind "old soul in a child's body" - will make you smile and steal your heart. All of your favorite McClare family members are back: Uncle Logan and wife Caitlyn (Blake's mother), sisters Alli and Meg with their mates, Nick and Bram, cousin Cassie and mate, Jamie, baby sis Maddy and housekeeper Rosie. While Blake becomes more aware of the beauty and wonderful qualities of his assistant of 2 years, in "Grace Like Rain", Patience has carried a "hidden" torch for him for some time - yet not letting herself think in terms of a romance due to his lack of faith in God. His playboy reputation is another deterrent to a romantic relationship, especially in the eyes of her grandfather/guardian, Arthur Peabody, retired judge and Logan's former Board of Supervisor peer. Julie's trademark writing style with it's beautiful family scenes, endearing flawed characters - redeemed by a loving God, abundant passion, heart-throbbing twists, humor, and romance, are each present in "Grace Like Rain". It will entertain, inspire, prompt laughter and tears - an unexpected story twist will have you on the edge of your seat. The novel's only downside: I didn't want it to end. Another winner for Julie - with a touching connection to it's title in the ending - "Grace Like Rain" receives much more than a 5 star rating from me!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Diana

    Grace Like Rain By Julie Lessman I am so delighted that readers everywhere are able to take one last visit with the close-knit McClare family of Julie Lessman's, Heart of San Francisco series. Grace Like Rain tells the story of Blake "the rake" McClare, the lovable rogue brother in the family. No woman has ever been able to resist Blake's charm...that is until he attempts to use his wiles on the lovely, Patience Peabody, who works in his office. The enigmatic Miss Peabody fascinates Blake and soo Grace Like Rain By Julie Lessman I am so delighted that readers everywhere are able to take one last visit with the close-knit McClare family of Julie Lessman's, Heart of San Francisco series. Grace Like Rain tells the story of Blake "the rake" McClare, the lovable rogue brother in the family. No woman has ever been able to resist Blake's charm...that is until he attempts to use his wiles on the lovely, Patience Peabody, who works in his office. The enigmatic Miss Peabody fascinates Blake and soon the unthinkable happens! He finds himself falling head over heels in love. But there is no way Patience is foolish enough to give her heart to a rake, whose reputation precedes him...or is there? Full of charm, wit, twists and turns, and of course, the sizzling romance that author Julie Lessman is so well known for, this is an absolute must read! How Julie Lessman can pack so much drama into a novella is beyond me! Fans will love the opportunity to bid one last adieu to the characters we have all grown to know and love in this wonderful series!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Wilani Wahl

    A wonderful collection of five different stories. All were wonderful and I found difficult to put them down. I look forward to reading more from these great authors.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Alisha Grant

    Charming set of books, put this down 5 years ago and just finished reading books all leading and holding you in suspense waiting for the promised kiss

  9. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    With this Kiss Historical Collection***** e-book by Ruth Logan Herne, Pam Hillman, Cara Lynn James, Julie Lessman and Mary Connealy This is a collection of four novellas and one prequel by five Christian authors. --His Beloved Bride by Ruth Logan Herne Phillip Dickinson has an inheritance coming, there is only one requirement—he must be married and have a child. Where is he to find a wife way out here on his South Dakota claim? Not far from his claim lives a very ill woman—widowed Grace Hawthorne an With this Kiss Historical Collection***** e-book by Ruth Logan Herne, Pam Hillman, Cara Lynn James, Julie Lessman and Mary Connealy This is a collection of four novellas and one prequel by five Christian authors. --His Beloved Bride by Ruth Logan Herne Phillip Dickinson has an inheritance coming, there is only one requirement—he must be married and have a child. Where is he to find a wife way out here on his South Dakota claim? Not far from his claim lives a very ill woman—widowed Grace Hawthorne and her newborn baby. What will happen to her and her baby? She prays to God to send someone to help—God answers her prayer with Phillip. Is a marriage of convenience the answer for Phillip and Grace? I can only imagine the hardships and struggles Phillip and Grace went through trying to make a living on the prairie in early South Dakota. I loved the way Phillip fell in love with Grace's son and the way he provided and cared for both of them. I was so hoping that they would find love despite their struggles. This is a sweet romance showing faith, hope and love. --Meeting in the Middle” by Pam Hillman Curt Parker has two very young girls who need his constant attention and protection. But how can he work his farm and watch them at the same time? His neighbor Alaina Garland needs help getting her fields planted. Can Curt and Alaina come to an agreement to work together? Both Alaina and Curt are stubborn and want to do things their way. It was interesting to see how they worked it out: working both farms and caring for the two little girls. I loved the little girls and hoped for Alaina and Curt to find love. Cute and sweet romance story. --The Innkeeper's Promise” by Cara Lynn James The Mountain View Inn where Lydia and her mother live and work, is in need of repairs. They barely have the finances to keep the Inn open much less for repairs. Dane is a co-owner of the Inn but is hardly there. He has dreams of his own to bother with the Inn. He returns in hopes for Lydia and her mother to buy out his half of the Inn but is surprised when he learns of their financial difficulties. In fact, the bank is about to foreclose on the Inn. A little background is given on the relationship between the characters that helps in the story. I really liked Lydia and her mother and how they ran the Inn with integrity and love. Dane was a bit selfish at first but after spending time at the Inn his attitude changed. There is a character I did not care for who brought tension and discord. The setting of the story sounds very peaceful and welcoming. I really enjoyed the story and was one of my favorites in the collection. --“Grace Like Rain” by Julie Lessman Blake McClare is 28 and enjoys being a bachelor. He has no desire to settle down to one woman anytime soon. Patience Peabody is a receptionist in Blake's law firm. She has heard all about him and plans on staying far away from him and his charms. This may prove to be a problem since they work so close together. I really enjoyed reading this novella. It is great to see some of the characters from the Heart of San Francisco series included in this story. I love the McClare family. I like the sparks that fly between Patience and Blake. This is a fun romance novella that shows how the paths we take in our lives do have consequences and affect our future as well as those around us. The characters deal with some unexpected twists and turns, laughter, tears, trust, forgiveness, integrity, love and a spiritual thread all woven together for a fantastic romance story. This is my most favorite of all the novellas in the book. --Closer Than Brothers: by Mary Connealy This novella is a bit different than the other romance stories in the collection. It is set in the Confederate Andersonville Prison camp during the war and is the prequel to the Kincade Bride series and the Trouble With Texas series. Five young men held in the prison camp, meet and protect each other from fellow prisoners, forming a bond closer than brothers. We get a glimpse of the hardships, sickness, illnesses, death, what they went through, what it took to survive and their faith and more. Their time in the camp shapes their future in dramatic ways. I don't normally read about prison camps, but I found this novella moving. I so wanted to help these young men and the other prisoners. My heart cried for the horrific conditions they faced and the mark it will forever leave on their lives. Well written. ~~I won an e-book copy of this book on OWG (Overcoming With God) and Noela Nancarrow...this is my honest review~~

  10. 5 out of 5

    Noela

    Outstanding, original and refreshing, and superbly written! This exceptional collection of novellas from some of the finest Inspirational Historical Romance authors, will give you hours of unsurpassed reading pleasure that lifts your spirit and leaves you smiling! HIS BELOVED BRIDE by Ruth Logan Herne: This incredibly touching story is dedicated to the courageous pioneers of America. It tells the story of the recently widowed Grace Hawthorne, with a new baby and no shelter or stock. When Phillip Outstanding, original and refreshing, and superbly written! This exceptional collection of novellas from some of the finest Inspirational Historical Romance authors, will give you hours of unsurpassed reading pleasure that lifts your spirit and leaves you smiling! HIS BELOVED BRIDE by Ruth Logan Herne: This incredibly touching story is dedicated to the courageous pioneers of America. It tells the story of the recently widowed Grace Hawthorne, with a new baby and no shelter or stock. When Phillip Dickerson suddenly discovers he needs a wife and child to receive an inheritance, marrying Grace seems like the perfect solution. Can love grow out of practicality and if so, will it be robust enough to withstand tragedy? This was a truly beautiful, heart-warming tale that had me in tears when I wasn’t sighing or smiling. Ruth Logan Herne is an extremely gifted story-teller! MEETING IN THE MIDDLE by Pam Hillman: An enrapturing story with so much promise and heart that it has you plowing through the pages! Neighbors Alaina Garland and Curt Parker were in a fix. They both needed their cotton crops plowed and hoed in time for harvest but Alaina was hard pressed to do the laborious work by herself and Curt couldn't leave his children alone. He strikes a deal with Alaina to mind his children while he worked both crops. But fulfilling each other’s needs also left them seeing the lack in in their own lives. Could the upcoming harvest bring in more than just cotton? This beautiful romance explores the issues of fear and trust, and delivers the perfect ending! THE INKEEPER’S PROMISE by Cara Lynn James: The picturesque and tranquil scenery surrounding The Mountain View Inn at Shadow Lake, New Hampshire, seizes your imagination as does the captivating story about this beloved inn and its owners. Lydia and her mother desperately want to keep their inn operating, but when the ambitious co-owner Dane turns up and sees the mess it’s in both physically and financially, the only viable solution is to sell. Can the growing affection between Lydia and Dane be enough for him to give up on his own determined ambitions and find a resolution? Cara is a new author to me, but I so enjoyed this beautiful story on faith and seeking God’s will, that I’ll be seeking out more from this author! GRACE LIKE RAIN by Julie Lessman: Invigorating and brilliantly witty, this novella excels in saturating your senses with sigh-inducing, lip-curving, and heart-hammering romance, while merging with a spiritually uplifting message of God’s overflowing grace. San Francisco’s most notorious bachelor Blake McClare takes everyone by surprise, including himself when his prim and proper receptionist Patience Peabody captures his elusive heart. How will he ever be able to persuade her to give this ‘rogue’ a chance? The romantic tension was powerful and achingly beautiful, and Julie’s trademark paralyzing twist takes you by surprise once again! CLOSER THAN BROTHERS by Mary Connealy: This was a real change in pace, and is a riveting and compelling read. ‘Closer than Brothers’ is a prequel to the intriguing and entertaining ‘The Kincaid Brides’ series of books, and I’m sure upon reading this novella you’ll want to grab those too! ‘Closer than Brothers’ predominantly takes place at Andersonville, a confederate prison camp during the Civil War. We see what the characters from Mary Connealy’s later books, endured during this horrific chapter of their lives that had shaped their futures so profoundly. This heart-rending story was remarkably inspiring in watching these men band together in the fight for their lives. And yes, you can still expect kisses in this heart-rending, though inspiring tale!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Wendy

    BACK OF THE BOOK BLURB (taken from Amazon.com) "His Beloved Bride" by Ruth Logan Herne Phillip Dickinson's inheritance requires him to be married with a child. He's got neither on his South Dakota claim. Grace Hawthorne lost her mean-spirited husband in the blizzard of '88, and her claim shack in a spring fire. With a newborn baby, a marriage of convenience seems right and wrong. When hardship comes their way, can faith, hope and love keep them together? "Meeting in the Middle" by Pam Hillman Having BACK OF THE BOOK BLURB (taken from Amazon.com) "His Beloved Bride" by Ruth Logan Herne Phillip Dickinson's inheritance requires him to be married with a child. He's got neither on his South Dakota claim. Grace Hawthorne lost her mean-spirited husband in the blizzard of '88, and her claim shack in a spring fire. With a newborn baby, a marriage of convenience seems right and wrong. When hardship comes their way, can faith, hope and love keep them together? "Meeting in the Middle" by Pam Hillman Having lost his young son, widowed cotton farmer Curt Parker is determined to protect his two little girls from harm. His new neighbor, Alaina Garland, needs help to save the farm she runs alone. Can these two meet in the middle to take care of his children as well as work the fields to save their land? "The Innkeeper's Promise" by Cara Lynn James Lydia, an inexperienced yet determined innkeeper, tries her best to convince Dane, her absentee co-owner, to keep their failing hotel operating despite his need for a quick sale. Will their love grow strong enough for the ambitious Dane to change all his plans and stay with Lydia? "Grace Like Rain" by Julie Lessman Because of Blake "The Rake" McClare's notorious reputation, receptionist Patience Peabody steers clear of the lovable rogue attorney at the law firm in which they both work. Until a rare thunderstorm brings them together in a love soaked with the grace of God and sparked with a little lightning of its own. "Closer Than Brothers" by Mary Connealy The heroes of the Trouble in Texas series met in Andersonville Prison during the war. What they went through, what it took to survive has created a bond between them. When one of the friends needs help, the others come a'running. They have a bond that is closer than brothers. This novella is the story of how they met in Andersonville. It's not a comedy, it's not a romance, but the fires that forged this friendship in the darkest days of the Civil War make the Trouble in Texas series bigger and better. I hope you enjoy the story. MY REVIEW I was anxious to read this book, these stories, as I really enjoy all of these authors and I was not disappointed at all. Each author pulled me into their stories and had me pulling for each couple to make a 'go' of their relationship. All of the main characters show a lot of determination to get through their problems and forge on. Great reading of some short stories that I think historical fiction readers will really enjoy.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Marissa

    “His Beloved Bride” by Ruth Logan Herne: This story easily grabbed me from the beginning. There was one sad part of the novella, but overall it was a very sweet story. Rating: 3.5 stars “Meeting in the Middle” by Pam Hillman: This was my second favorite story. I really loved the characters and felt that the romance was believable. I loved the sweet sense of family that developed for all the characters and the growing romance between the two main characters. Rating: 4.5 stars. “The Innkeeper's Prom “His Beloved Bride” by Ruth Logan Herne: This story easily grabbed me from the beginning. There was one sad part of the novella, but overall it was a very sweet story. Rating: 3.5 stars “Meeting in the Middle” by Pam Hillman: This was my second favorite story. I really loved the characters and felt that the romance was believable. I loved the sweet sense of family that developed for all the characters and the growing romance between the two main characters. Rating: 4.5 stars. “The Innkeeper's Promise” by Cara Lynn James: Although this was a sweet story that I did enjoy, it was my least favorite of the collection. I didn’t find the romance to be as believable as the other novellas, and I felt that the resolution was a little quick and cheesy. Yet, it is still worth reading as it is a pleasant story, and I did find the characters’ steadfast trust in God to be inspiring Rating: 2.5 stars. “Grace Like Rain” by Julie Lessman: While I did enjoy each of the other novellas in the collection, this one is definitely in a class of its own. From the very first page of this story, Lessman effortlessly brings you into the story and puts a smile to your face with her wit. The romance is to die for and so well-written. Rating: 5 stars

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stefanie Harten

    Grace like Rain by Julie Lessman This eagerly awaited novella is a fantastic sequel to the Heart of San Francisco series. It is great stand alone story but also a captivating sequel to one of the most inspiring series I have ever read. I was extremely excited to read Blake "the rake" McClare's story. After many years of living a carefree and faithless lifestyle, Blake finally realizes that he is missing something in his life. Patience Grace Peabody has worked for Blake's uncle for at least two y Grace like Rain by Julie Lessman This eagerly awaited novella is a fantastic sequel to the Heart of San Francisco series. It is great stand alone story but also a captivating sequel to one of the most inspiring series I have ever read. I was extremely excited to read Blake "the rake" McClare's story. After many years of living a carefree and faithless lifestyle, Blake finally realizes that he is missing something in his life. Patience Grace Peabody has worked for Blake's uncle for at least two years. She has fought her attraction to Blake "the rake" because she will never get involved with anyone living his kind of lifestyle. Without giving anything away, this is a truly unique story about a rake and a faith filled young woman and the path their relationship takes. It is so much fun to revisit the characters from the previous books while finally giving a soul searching look into the life of Blake McClare. Just like every other book or novella Julie Lessman has written, this novella is not one you can put down easily. You simply just want to keep reading!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Natalie Monk

    This is a review for Meeting in the Middle. I'm looking forward to reading the rest in this collection--a fantastic group of authors here. A sweet farm romance where past wounds threaten budding attraction between a farmer’s orphan daughter and a neighboring farmer with two orphan daughters of his own. The hero was rugged, amusingly stubborn, but at the same time tender and heartwarming. The heroine is one of my favorites Ms. Hillman has written so far. Country as a corn pone, but vulnerable and This is a review for Meeting in the Middle. I'm looking forward to reading the rest in this collection--a fantastic group of authors here. A sweet farm romance where past wounds threaten budding attraction between a farmer’s orphan daughter and a neighboring farmer with two orphan daughters of his own. The hero was rugged, amusingly stubborn, but at the same time tender and heartwarming. The heroine is one of my favorites Ms. Hillman has written so far. Country as a corn pone, but vulnerable and feminine. The plot was easygoing and developed organically from the setting. As for secondary characters, the two little girls were positively adorable. I smiled so big at them. And the romance leaves you with a sense of homeyness and good cheer.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Catherine Richmond

    Desperate to meet the conditions of a will, Ruth Logan Herne's hero proposes to a woman with a newborn. Pam Hillman's couple work together on a subsistence farm. Cara Lynn James's hero helps save an inn and fall in love with the innkeeper (since I'm working on a story with a hotelier in 1908, I was hoping for more details about innkeeping). Mary Connealy provides backstory for the heros of the Trouble in Texas series and Over the Edge's crazy hero. But best of all - drumroll, please!, Julie Less Desperate to meet the conditions of a will, Ruth Logan Herne's hero proposes to a woman with a newborn. Pam Hillman's couple work together on a subsistence farm. Cara Lynn James's hero helps save an inn and fall in love with the innkeeper (since I'm working on a story with a hotelier in 1908, I was hoping for more details about innkeeping). Mary Connealy provides backstory for the heros of the Trouble in Texas series and Over the Edge's crazy hero. But best of all - drumroll, please!, Julie Lessman finds a match for Blake the Rake - and he's better for it!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Dianne Sidebottom

    I read this book in order. Enjoyed the first story n the next two. I am familiar with the McClare's family was glad to see Blake the rake court Gracie. So like how Meg n Alli had their wedding the same day n that Logan n Caitlyn were now married. As for Mary's prequel story has me going back over books with the characters mentioned n look forward to reading about "Big John" n where lands up. (kisses of Seth n Callie) been a while since I have had a kiss. hmm

  17. 5 out of 5

    Maryann Anderson

    Good collection "Closer than brothers" is as close as I hope to ever come to being in prison. The bleakness of the prison and the hopelessness of the men unfortunate enough to be inmates there was so well written that I could almost feel I was right there with them. Very good collection of stories.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Courtney Clark

    I read "Grace Like Rain" by Julie Lessman It was fun to catch up with the McClares - and see Blake get his happy ending, even if it was a little too short (at least for me, I'm used to Julie's 500+ page stories!). In other words, I wasn't quite ready for it to end.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Beth Erin

    Excellent collection full of quality historical fiction. I highly recommend this collection!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Mackenzie

    5 in 1 --Includes book 3.5 of Lessman's Heart of San Fracisco series --Includes back stories of the heroes in Connealy's Trouble in Texas series *Wonderful collection!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Emily

  22. 4 out of 5

    Beverly Yerkie

  23. 5 out of 5

    Janan Sherer

  24. 5 out of 5

    Erica

  25. 5 out of 5

    Will cotton

  26. 4 out of 5

    Betsy

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kim

  28. 4 out of 5

    Margaret Clement

  29. 5 out of 5

    Cari

  30. 4 out of 5

    Margaret Brown

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