"Shenandoah Hearts" by Carrie Fancett Pagels novella in The Backcountry Brides Collection (Barbour, May 2018)
Andrea Stephens' review of "Shenandoah Hearts"
First, I have to say I had the distinct pleasure of being a beta reader for this novella. I loved the story when I read it the first time. It was fun to see the subtle changes and final edits when I read this published version, making me love it even more. Carrie Fancett Pagels does not disappoint with this fictional telling of the beginnings of the French-Indian war.
The main story is about Magdalene and Jacob. They worked together in a shop in Philadelphia, each
having unspoken feelings for the other. Magda moved with her family to the Shenandoah Valley where three of her brothers have built a cabin for the entire family. Jacob is enticed by his brothers to join the same wagon train and move himself, ending up close to where Magda and her family have settled. I loved the back and forth flirting between Magda and Jacob. The family banter and teasing by both of their families. Magda's ailing mother even says to her “You and that Jacob are just alike in keeping your feelings too...too close...”
Magdalene was all to aware of their different stations in Philadelphia but “out here in the valley, by these blue mountains, those differences in status seemed to disappear.” No spoilers but just when I thought they would get together, the war begins and everyone from the surrounding settlements move within the walls of the fort. Despite the tension and all the hard work war brings, the romance develops and feelings grow. There are also some surprises for other family members as well.
I loved this story and was very satisfied with the epilogue. Honestly, a tear escaped my eye and fell onto the last page.
I highly recommend it to all.
Bio and links for The Backcountry Brides Collection:
You can read a clip of the collection by clicking here!
1754 - Great Wagon Road, into the Shenandoah Valley (Virginia)
As the French-Indian War commences, Magda Sehler wonders if Jacob Owens lost his mind to have abandoned his Philadelphia business and moved to the Shenandoah Valley. Or has he lost his heart?
Check out the Christmas Anthology associated with Carrie's story on the Colonial Quills group blog (Click Here).
Purchase at Christian Book Distributors
GIVEAWAY: We're giving away a copy of The Backcountry Brides Collection this week -- leave a comment on today's review and on Carrie's post on having branches trimmed for two entries.