Friday, July 10, 2020

AN APPALACHIAN SUMMER by Ann Gabhart, Reviewed by Paula Shreckhise

An Appalachian Summer is a charming story with endearing characters and rich detail of the beautiful Appalachians.

When I read a novel by Ann Gabhart, it is like coming home. Her books give me a warm cozy feeling. This book is no exception.

Piper Danson comes from Louisville society in 1933. She has just made her debut and her father has marriage expectations for her. But this is the era when women were beginning to decide things for themselves. After Piper hears Mary Breckinridge talk about her nursing service, she determines to volunteer as a courier for the Frontier Nurse/Midwives in the Appalachian Mountains of Eastern Kentucky. Her longtime friend, Jaime Russell, whose family lost almost everything in the stock market crash is no longer suitable as husband material. At least according to her father. Jaime loves to write and aspires to be a journalist but has agreed to take a teaching position in the fall.

Piper is taken by the mountains when she reaches Wendover Nursing Station. “You know what our nurse midwives are fond of saying. No one comes to these mountains by accident.”

The people may be backward and scary at times but they respect and revere God. Piper searches for a deeper relationship with the Lord. She finds wise counsel from a woman from the hills and witnesses miracles of birth and nature.

Ms. Gabhart obviously writes from experience as she describes life on a farm outpost. The scenes with the horses, dogs and chickens come to life under her pen.

The romance between Piper and Jaime is natural, if filled with a bit of anxiety. And romance could bloom again for her Aunt Truda.

This was the perfect book to read on my back porch on a sunny June afternoon.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell on behalf of the author. I was not required to give a favorable review. All opinions are my own.*I give this book 5 stars. It has a solid faith thread. 

BackCover Blurb:
In 1933 Louisville, Kentucky, even the ongoing economic depression cannot keep Piper Danson's parents from insisting on a debut party. After all, their fortune came through the market crash intact, and they've picked out the perfect suitor for their daughter. Braxton Crandall can give her the kind of life she's used to. The only problem? This is not the man--or the life--she really wants.

When Piper gets the opportunity to volunteer as a horseback Frontier Nursing courier in the Appalachian Mountains for the summer, she jumps at the chance to be something other than a dutiful daughter or a kept wife in a loveless marriage. The work is taxing, the scenery jaw-droppingly gorgeous, and the people she meets along the way open up a whole new world to her. The longer she stays, the more an advantageous marriage slips from her grasp. But something much more precious--true love--is drawing ever closer.

Bestselling author Ann H. Gabhart invites you into the storied hills of Eastern Kentucky to discover what happens when one intrepid young woman steps away from the restrictive past into a beautiful, wide-open future.

Revell Publishing June 2020
Available in digital ebook, paperback, hardcover and audiobook:
Buy An Appalachian Summer at Amazon
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