Sunday, February 10, 2019

MY HEART BELONGS IN THE BLUE RIDGE by Pepper Basham, Reviewed by Winnie Thomas

Pepper Basham takes the reader on an eye-opening cultural trip to the backwoods of Appalachia in 1918 in her novel My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge: Laurel’s Dream. 
Capturing the speech of the locals and the adventures awaiting the outsiders who dare to venture there, the author painted such a vivid picture that I was transported and felt like I was plopped right down with Teacher into the setting. The colorful characters came alive on the page and traipsed right into my heart. Laurel McAdams, who wants to become a teacher, and Jonathan Taylor, who has taken a teaching job in the Blue Ridge Mountains but wants to become a doctor, are the main characters in this captivating tale. Jonathan has no idea about the adventures that are awaiting him—mountain lions, polecats, and wary parents, along with a beautiful, courageous heroine.

Brimming with wit and charm and full of Basham’s sense of humor and beautiful prose, this book is one for the keeper shelf. Themes of trust, faith, the importance of family, and the power of love are woven seamlessly throughout the book and add to the journey into this intriguing world. I’m hoping there will be additional stories about some of the other characters in the future.

*I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Barbour Publishing/NetGalley. All opinions are my own. 


BackCover Blurb:
Journey into the Blue Ridge Mountains of 1918 where Laurel McAdams endures the challenges of a hard life while dreaming things can eventually improve. But trouble arrives in the form of an outsider. Having failed his British father again, Jonathan Taylor joins is uncle’s missionary endeavors as a teacher in a two-room schoolhouse. Laurel feels compelled to protect the tenderhearted teacher from the harsh realities of Appalachian life, even while his stories of life outside the mountains pull at Laurel’s imagination. Faced with angry parents over teaching methods, Laurel’s father’s drunken rages, and bad news from England, will Jonathan leave and never return, or will he stay and let love bloom?

Available in digital ebook and paperback:
Buy My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge at Amazon
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