About the Book
Book: Waltz in the Wilderness
Series: Chapparal Hearts
Author: Kathleen Denly
Publisher: Wild Heart Books
Genre: Christian Historical Romance
Release Date: February 4, 2020
She’s desperate to find her missing father. His conscience demands he risk all to help.
Eliza Brooks is haunted by her role in her mother’s death, so she’ll do anything to find her missing pa—even if it means sneaking aboard a southbound ship. When those meant to protect her abandon and betray her instead, a family friend’s unexpected assistance is a blessing she can’t refuse.
Daniel Clarke came to California to make his fortune, and a stable job as a San Francisco carpenter has earned him more than most have scraped from the local goldfields. But it’s been four years since he left Massachusetts and his fiancé is impatient for his return. Bound for home at last, Daniel Clarke finds his heart and plans challenged by a tenacious young woman with haunted eyes. Though every word he utters seems to offend her, he is determined to see her safely returned to her father. Even if that means risking his fragile engagement.
When disaster befalls them in the remote wilderness of the Southern California mountains, true feelings are revealed, and both must face heart-rending decisions. But how to decide when every choice before them leads to someone getting hurt?
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Waltz in the Wilderness by Kathleen Denly has my feel-good nod of approval. Not only did it satisfy my reading soul, but it gave me real substance to chew on as I contemplated the characters and their response to untenable circumstances.
I fell in love with strong-headed, one-purpose Eliza Brooks and Daniel Clark, her uncle’s employee who becomes her reluctant escort.
Other characters I couldn’t stand at all, while I wondered how the people around them could stomach them.
The novel is pretty predictable, though fun until certain secondary characters decide to take over the story as if they don’t like where the author was taking them. One character challenges Eliza to compare her motives in her search for her father with Scripture directives. Then we are allowed to see what Eliza will do about her willfulness that she has until now labeled “responsibility.” I got so deeply into the story that my mind was boggled by the weight these characters bore, who stood up and developed a backbone and changed the course of the story. I really wanted to know more about what life is like for them, and perhaps we’ll find out. I appreciated clear explanations of faith, themes of feeling undeserving of God’s love, and the need to truly trust Him to care for ourselves and others. It obviously affected the players’ daily lives. This story does include to some degree the sad effects slavery and prejudice have on people who are different from their abusers.
I loved this book and I highly recommend it. If you like reading Miralee Ferrell or Misty Beller, you will like Kathleen Denly.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author and publisher through Celebrate Lit. This does not influence my opinions, for which I am solely responsible.
5 Stars – Superior – Hits My Reading Sweet Spot
Terrific Historical Debut!
About the Author
Kathleen Denly lives in sunny Southern California with her loving husband, four young children, and two cats. As a member of the adoption and foster community, children in need are a cause dear to her heart and she finds they make frequent appearances in her stories. When she isn’t writing, researching, or caring for children, Kathleen spends her time reading, visiting historical sites, hiking, and crafting.
More from Kathleen
As Valentine’s Day nears, stories of how couples met seem to be everywhere. Many of those stories share a common element: “The second I saw him/her, I just knew I would marry him/her.”
Every time I read or hear these stories, I chuckle. Not because I don’t believe them but because it reminds me of my own meet-cute.
“Not my type.”
These were the first words to enter my mind when I met the man who would later become my husband. In hindsight, they are hilarious because I know that God worked things out for our good. After more than eighteen years of marriage, I can honestly say that I am more in love with my husband than ever.
However, just a few months prior to meeting my husband, I’d suffered a terrible breakup with another man whom I thought had been considering proposing to me. I had no idea the breakup was coming and that left me devastated and confused. The truths we learn in hindsight don’t help much when we’re in the midst of such circumstances. When we think we know the future before us and something happens to upend those plans it can feel as though our world has turned upside down.
This is what happens to Eliza Brooks in the first chapter of my novel, Waltz in the Wilderness. Though not romantic in nature, a major shift occurs in her world that leaves her feeling betrayed and disoriented. She’s still struggling to right her world when Daniel Clarke enters her life in the worst way possible. Misunderstanding leads to a humiliating confrontation that sets these two at odds with one another before they have a chance to truly get to know each other. Fortunately for Eliza and Daniel, God works their foolishness for good just as He did in my own true love story.
This Valentine’s Day, whatever your romantic relationship status, remember that you are not alone. You are loved. And the God of all the universe loves you and has a plan for you—plans to prosper you and bring you hope.
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” ~ Proverbs 3:5-6
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Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 6
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deb’s Book Review, February 7
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Locks, Hooks and Books, February 9
The Christian Fiction Girl, February 9
The Meanderings of a Bookworm, February 9
Betti Mace, February 10
Through the Fire Blogs, February 10
Inklings and notions, February 11
Robin’s Nest, February 11
Remembrancy, February 12
For Him and My Family, February 12
My Devotional Thoughts, February 12
Maureen’s Musings, February 13
For the Love of Literature, February 13
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 14
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To celebrate her tour, Kathleen is giving away the grand prize package of a NEW Kindle Fire HD8, Proverbs 3:5 Paperback Lined Journal, Romans 8:28 Leather Bookmark, Proverbs 3:5 mug, and an Antique Silverplated Spoon made by 1847 Rogers Bros!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.