07 February 2013

Teresa Mathews Reviews Lily by Diane T. Ashley and Aaron McCarver


Lily by Diane Ashley
and Aaron McCarver 
Reviewed by Teresa Mathews 
4.5 Stars

In this story Diane Ashley and Aaron McCarver have transported us back in time to Natchez, Mississippi, where we are introduced to life on the Mississippi River via steamboat. 

Lily Anderson from the day she was born has had the love of the Mississippi in her blood, having been raised on it until the accidental death of her mother when Lily was a young girl. Since that time Lily and her younger sisters have lived with her mother's parents after their father dropped them off never to return. He obviously didn't want the responsibly of raising three daughters alone.


Lily's grandfather has just passed away and now her Aunt Dahlia's husband is taking over the family's responsibilities and wants to force Lily into marrying a much older man. Lily does not want to marry this man or any other man for that matter, since her father's abandonment Lily has never trusted men. After a talk with her Grandmother Lily is able to get her inheritance without having to  go through her uncle. Little does her grandmother know that Lily will soon be back on the same river that took her daughter's life, as co-owner of a beautiful steamboat, the Hattie Belle.

Blake Matthews' father was a minister but in spite of that fact Blake finds himself on the Mississippi running gambling tables. Blake is well known for his honesty so if a man leaves his tables having lost all his money it wasn't because Blake cheated him. When the son of a well known business man comes to Blake's boat to have a little fun and leaves having signed an IOU giving Blake possession of the Hattie Belle, it wasn't Blake's fault lady luck had smiled on him. When he shows up at their mansion to claim the title Blake has no clue he will not be the only person with a claim to the Hattie Belle.

When Lily shows up to claim the Hattie Belle she is shocked to find Blake there already remodeling the boat to make it one of the best gambling boats to ever sail the Mississippi. Lily and Blake really butt heads when he finds out she will not allow any gambling on her boat, and since she has controlling interest it's decided the Hattie Belle will be carrying various cargo instead of gamblers. There is someone that will stop at nothing to get their hands on the Hattie Belle. Will Lily and Blake survive the attack that comes their way?

I found this story to be quite an enjoyable read, I loved all the characters, and how Diane and Aaron brought them all to life. The story line was easy to follow and I found myself quite drawn into it. I also enjoyed how Blake was shown the way to Christ, and how Lily came to terms with the unforgiveness she held for her father. There were a few unexpected surprises and a lot of moments of wondering how it was going to end. All in all I greatly enjoyed it and would love to read more by these authors in the future.

I would like to say thank you to Barbour Publishing and NetGalley for giving me an arc in exchange for my honest opinion.

Lily may be purchased at CBD, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

Giveaway: One of Diane's and Aaron's books will be given away this week. Extra counts given to OWG Followers. Simply put OWG at the end of your comment.


QUESTION: Blake's father was a minister and Blake instead of following in the way he was taught, rebelled. Did you have a strict upbringing and if so did you have a hard time adhering to it?

46 comments:

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed your review, TERESA, and really loved this book! Although CAMELLIA can be read as a stand alone, I highly recommend readying LILY first! It's such a great book!

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  2. DIANA I agree 100% it is a wonderful book and Camellia was just as good if not better! Both are MUST READS!!!

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  3. Great review I want to read the book! Yes we was bought up with a very tight fist. We knew what we could and could not do. Also knew what would happen if we disobeyed. Not in a abusive manner but we knew we was gonna get a willow switch if we was out of line. I think back then as a child I hated it but as I became a adult I kinda of thanked them for being tuff on me. Cause I new it kept me out of a lot of trouble. I would love to win this book.OWG
    Blessings
    joeym11@frontier.com

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    1. Hi, DIANA! Nowadays if you spank your child you can get into plenty of hot water. Makes you wonder what the future generation is going to be like without discipline. The Bible says, "Spare the rod -- spoil the child" and one certainly sees alot more spoiled children these days. sigh...

      That being said-Good luck in the drawing!! You will love LILY!

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  4. Great review Teresa! Now I want to read this book!

    Yes, I had a strict upbringing. My Dad watched over me like a hawk. I couldn't go to any functions at school, only church related functions. As I look back over my earlier years I understand why Dad was so tough on me when growing up. Mom left Dad for another man when I was around 6 years old. Dad raised us by himself for 6 years until he met my step-Mom. I don't really think Dad to this day has forgiven my Mom. (My Mom passed away last year.) I think he was afraid I'd turn out like her. Mom did go back to my Dad several years ago and she apologized to him as well as to us kids. God can work miracles in the lives of people. Mom is a perfect example.

    Blessings!
    Judy
    judyjohn2004(at)yahoo(dot)com
    OWG follower!

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    1. TERESA had an app't but should be back shortly. Thank you, JUDY, for sharing that with us. That had to be so traumatic for a six yr old...I can't imagine my gsons going through something like that. Yes, He is a miracle working God and the godly person that you are certainly reflects that, as I know you have been through alot in your life. I'm so sorry for the loss of your mom, and so glad she made things right.

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    2. Diana thank you for watching out for me while I took Mom to the dentist. You are the best BFF EVER!!! Love you!

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  5. I think my upbringing was moderate in that my father was fairly strict but not so much that I rebelled against the idea of church. Actually tho, he was pretty strict about dating and etc. When it was a school function he would accompany me until my later teen years. I knew he loved me tho and I really didn't mind too much. [too much :D]
    Please enter my name in the giveaway. Great review Teresa. Blessings! Darlene
    spangldlady[at]gmail[dot]com

    OWG

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    1. DARLENE, what a good child you were! I would have died if my father had accompanied me to school functions! But I would have loved it if he would have come to our huge play that the school put on every year with the sixth grade class. Seemed like everyone else's parents were there but mine. :(

      I was a baton twirler in the king's court. I got to wear dark rouge on my cheeks b/c it was outside at night. I thought the rouge part was definitely too cool. lol And I had to wear a short skirt so I could twirl...surprised my dad let me do that!

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  6. Teresa, thank you for your review of Lily. Aaron and I so much appreciate your kind words. We enjoyed telling Blake's story, especially when he came to God. My co-author is so brilliant and managed to think of a way to use a character from an earlier novel we'd written in that scene. We love writing--especially together--and hope to continue with more novels in the future if it is God's will.

    As to your question, my parents were strict but not so strict that I had problems adhering to their rules. In fact my sister-in-law once told my brother that we had grown up in Mayberry. I have to agree that we had wonderful parents who loved us very much and provided us with the tools we needed to become successful and faith-filled adults. I cannot wait until we are reunited in Heaven.

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    1. Diane it is a pleasure reading your books.


      Mom and Dad were wonderful examples of Godly Christians, we all (2 girls and 2 boys) might have thought they were too strict but we thank God for that now. We are all still walking in the path they paved for us!

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  7. QUESTION: Blake's father was a minister and Blake instead of following in the way he was taught, rebelled. Did you have a strict upbringing and if so did you have a hard time adhering to it?

    I did have a very strict upbringing. I became rebellious and resentful.

    Please enter me in the contest.

    cindialtman(at)gmail(dot)com

    OWG

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    1. Cindi

      Our Mom was called the Prison Warden....kids in the neighborhood would come to the door and ask "can the prisoners come out and play". I didn't rebel too much, and now that I am older I am glad that Mom and Dad were strict on us.

      Thanks for coming by! Got you entered.

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  8. Loved the review and love the cover to this book! makeighleekyleigh at yahoo.com OWG

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    1. Megan thanks! The cover is beautiful and the story was so wonderful!

      Did you want to answer the question?

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  9. I did have a strict upbringing. I had a curfew, even the night before I was getting married and I was 21!
    I usually just did what I was told. It was much easier that way than pay the consequences.
    campbellamyd at gmail dot com

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    1. AMY I know just what you mean...my first date I was 17 and mom made us ride to the grocery store with her. I was in the front seat he was in the back!!! Lol What an exciting night.


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  10. I suppose by some standards I had a strict upbringing but to me it wasn't really. I rebelled more as a small child than I ever did as a teenager etc. As I grew older I became more strict on myself, my parents would have allowed me to do more but I chose not to.
    Jasmine A.
    montanamade(at)gmail(dot)com

    OWG

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  11. JASMINE your parents must have been very proud of you. :)

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  12. Blessedly I did not. Though my siblings may disagree! LOL! I was the baby of the bunch and I had 13 years between me and my eldest 10 between my closest in age. So I kinda learned from their mistakes and didn't repeat them. I knew the boundaries and rarely crossed them.

    Amada (pronounced: a.m.a.th.a) Chavez

    amada_chavez{AT}yahoo{DOT}com

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    1. AMADA your family sounds like mine my oldest brother is 13 years older than me, my sister 11 years and the brother closest to me is about 9.5 years older. MOM would always tell me I didn't have to ever get married and leave her and daddy. Lol So glad that was one time I didn't obey her. :) But other times I knew not to disobey her she was tough.

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  13. I am an OWG follower. Yes, I had a strict upbringing. I am the only girl with 4 brothers. It didn't bother me, though. I never got in trouble and was never grounded. I didn't ever want to overstep the boundaries. I always said I was the oldest young person I knew! Maybe I'll rebel sometime. I'm 50 and waiting...
    susanlulu@yahoo.com

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    1. Susan that's too cute if you haven't rebelled by now I don't think it's going to happen! :)

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  14. I did not have a strict upbringing or at least I don't think it was. Of course I did not do much to get into trouble, now if you ask my sister and brother they may have a different story.

    Thank you for the chance to win

    griperang at embarqmail dot com

    owg follower (griperang)

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    1. ANGELA that's wonderful you were an obedient child, and I promise not to ask your siblings about how good you were. ;)

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  15. I was blessed to be raised with Christian parents, but we didn't have rules that made you want to rebell. We were expected to follow any rules set up for us. What we got in trouble for most with my daddy was if he heard us not minding our mother, or talking back to her. He was stick with us to be respectful of our elders. I didn't get in trouble hardly ever, for I really don't remember wanting to do things that would not be okay with my folks. This book sounds like one I would really like. Good review Teresa. Please enter me. Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com OWG

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    1. MAXIE both of these books in this series were so enjoyable.

      It's so good to hear stories like yours where you have wonderful parents and you are brought up with good manners. Now days it's so sad to see children that have no respect for their elders or anyone else. When I was a kid I knew better than to "sass" my parents.

      Thanks for sharing...you've been entered in the giveaway. :)

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  16. Hello...I am a new OWG follower. I am really interested in this series. I have not read anything by them...but I think I did read a few that Aaron co-wrote with Gilbert Morris.
    I am thankful to say I was raised in a strict and loving
    home. It was never so strict that we couldn't move, or breathe. I was brought up in a pastor's home and taught early on to love the Lord with all my heart. My parents did a wonderful job of teaching me to have a heart like God's with actions to match. They taught me to obey and that God disciplines those He loves. I am so glad I was brought up this way..although I didn't love it while I was getting spanked lol. I do also have to say some people confuse beating and spanking..or spanking in anger. My parents are not perfect but they did as God told them to!
    I would love to be entered and my e-mail is sunydey26@aol.com

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    1. JOHNETTE let me welcome you to our blog...it's so good to meet new followers. Thanks for sharing with us about your sweet parents, I also had a Mom that didn't mind giving us a spanking if we needed it. I didn't like it either but it didn't hurt me one bit, well it did when Mom used a "switch" on my legs but in the long run it did me good. :) We have you entered in the giveaway!

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  17. My parents might have been a bit on the strict side, but I guess I was always a very compliant child.

    I even spent 2 years at Bob Jones University, and as long as you know what you are in for going in even that wasn't to bad!

    OWG
    Patty
    pattymh2000(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. PATTY I have home schooled my boys for the past six years using BJU's curriculum, don't know how they would do at the actual school though since they are even more strict than I am. :) Thanks for sharing with us.

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  18. Great review TERESA!! It seems I will have to add both of these books reviewed by you and Diana to my TBR list!

    We were brought up in a fairly strict home but it was without God, so it was good and bad. Sometimes too many rules for unimportant things and even silly things but we mostly adhered for fear of cruel punishment, and as we got older we just learnt how to be more careful.
    The difference between that and God, is that with God we have full respect and the knowledge that He is omnipresent!! :)

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    1. NOELA I'm so sorry you have a rough childhood. I am so glad you came to know the Lord and have experienced His love in your life. I am thankful for Christian parents even though we all thought Mom was too hard on us sometime. She is eighty six years old now and can still make me walk the line. LOL!!

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    2. TERESA my sweets, I am SO thankful too!! :) Our parents did love us... however I learnt a lot about parenting from James Dobson after I had became a Christian and am so grateful for his teaching.
      Haha, love that your mum can still keep you in line!! And as we all know here... that is very necessary, LOL ;)

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  19. Sounds like a great book, TERESA! Loved reading your review. Hugs from your oversees daughter. ♥

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    1. MARIAN thanks, big hugs back to you!! <3

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  20. my parents weren't in the ministry per say but grew up as a deacon's kid. yes they were strict but had not problem

    ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

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    1. APPLE BLOSSOM thanks for sharing with us, my dad was a deacon too. :)

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  21. We didn't have a really strict up bringing. But were raised to respect our elders and everyone else as well. We also had rules about being not being sassy to our parents. It really was a great life and I loved and respected both my parents . They tried and and did do a great job even when we didn't have much to do anything with. They have both passed and I really miss them and wish they were still here.

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    1. JUANITA so sorry to hear your parents aren't with you anymore. I still have my mom, she is 86, my dad passed away in 1996 and I really miss him. Thank you for sharing with us.

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  22. I don't think my Christian upbringing was overly strict but I do watch and listen to things my parents don't and that started when I was a teenager. OWG shopgirl152nykiki(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. VERONICA, thank you so much for coming by and good luck in the drawing.

      Thank you for sharing and thank God you had a good Christian upbringing!

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  23. I had the most amazing childhood. A home full of love & respect & all that is right and good. Truly blessed.

    OWG

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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    1. MARY, you are indeed truly blessed! I did not have any of that at all, but I found Jesus through it all, so the pain I went thru was so worth it. Although it took me years to see it that way!

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  24. No, I wouldn't say that my upbringing was a strict one.

    OWG

    wfnren(at)aol(dot)com

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