First Line Fridays: The Road to Magnolia Glen

Welcome to First Line Friday’s hosted by Hoarding Books.

Today I’m happy to be featuring The Road to Magnolia Glen by Pam Hillman. With vivid details and engaging characters, I was transported into this exciting story of betrayal and learning to trust God when things seem their darkest. CLICK HERE to read my review.

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Natchez Under-the-hill on the Mississippi River
February 1792

          “Stay close.”
     Eyes on the bustling wharf, Kiera held tight to Meghan’s hand, ensuring her adventuresome sister didn’t disappear into the crowd.

 

 

Now it’s your turn!

Grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line. To see what First Lines others are sharing this week head over to Hoarding Books.

First Line Fridays hosted by Hoarding Books

 

 

The Road to Magnolia Glen (Natchez Trace #2) by Pam Hillman

Synopsis:

1792, Natchez Trace, MS
Bitter since his eldest brother abandoned their family in Ireland, Quinn O’Shea travels to Natchez, Mississippi, ready to shuck the weight of his duty and set off on an adventure of his own. It’s time Connor, as head of the family, took responsibility for their younger siblings. While aboard ship, a run-in with three Irish sisters lands Quinn in the role of reluctant savior. Though it may delay his plans, he cannot abandon the Young sisters, especially the tenacious yet kind Kiera.

Upon arriving in the colonies, Kiera Young prepares to meet her intended and begin her new life. But she soon discovers the marriage her brother-in-law arranged was never meant to be, and a far more sinister deal was negotiated for her and her sisters.

Quinn offers to escort his charges safely to Breeze Hill Plantation and his brother’s care, fully intending to seek his freedom elsewhere. But the longer he remains, the greater his feelings toward Kiera grow and the more he comes to realize true freedom might be found in sacrifice.

My Thoughts:

I was thrilled to travel back to the Natchez Trace in this second novel from Pam Hillman. With vivid details and engaging characters, I was transported into this exciting story of betrayal and learning to trust God when things seem their darkest.

After the death of her step-father, Kiera Young and her two younger sisters are sent to Natchez, Mississippi. Kiera was told that her brother-in-law arranged a marriage for her, but it was something else entirely that was arranged. Kiera’s faith in God is tested as she learns to wait on God’s perfect timing.

Quinn O’Shea carries a heavy burden of bitterness toward his older brother for leaving the family in Ireland and for having to take on the responsibility of his younger brothers. Quinn wants nothing more than to see his younger brothers safely to their older brother, before setting off on his own grand adventure. However, he didn’t foresee his hearts entanglement with a feisty blond Irish lass, nor the guilt at leaving his brother’s behind. Will Quinn be able to let go of the bitterness and hurt of the past to have a future filled with love and laughter?

This spellbinding story is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat wondering what will happen next. I was kept up late into the night, turning pages eager to find out what would transpire in the lives of these charming characters. I give this story 4.5 stars and would encourage you to pick up a copy to enjoy!

(I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Netgalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own.)

Favorite Quote:

About the Author:

PamHillman  CBA Bestselling author PAM HILLMAN was born and raised on a dairy farm in Mississippi and spent her teenage years perched on the seat of a tractor raking hay. In those days, her daddy couldn’t afford two cab tractors with air conditioning and a radio, so Pam drove an Allis Chalmers 110. Even when her daddy asked her if she wanted to bale hay, she told him she didn’t mind raking. Raking hay doesn’t take much thought so Pam spent her time working on her tan and making up stories in her head. Now, that’s the kind of life every girl should dream of.

Web page // Twitter // Goodreads // Facebook //

Pick-up your copy today!

  The Road to Magnolia Glen (Natchez Trace #2)

  The Promise of Breeze Hill (Natchez Trace #1)

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Author Interview & Giveaway with Pam Hillman

I’m super thrilled to have Pam Hillman visiting with us today! Please join me in giving her a warm welcome.

PamHillmanCBA Bestselling author PAM HILLMAN was born and raised on a dairy farm in Mississippi and spent her teenage years perched on the seat of a tractor raking hay. In those days, her daddy couldn’t afford two cab tractors with air conditioning and a radio, so Pam drove an Allis Chalmers 110. Even when her daddy asked her if she wanted to bale hay, she told him she didn’t mind raking. Raking hay doesn’t take much thought so Pam spent her time working on her tan and making up stories in her head. Now, that’s the kind of life every girl should dream of.

Web page // Twitter // Goodreads // Facebook //

ThePromiseOfBreezeHillNatchez, MS; 1791
Anxious for his brothers to join him on the rugged frontier along the Mississippi River, Connor O’Shea has no choice but to indenture himself as a carpenter in exchange for their passage from Ireland. But when he’s sold to Isabella Bartholomew of Breeze Hill Plantation, Connor fears he’ll repeat past mistakes and vows not to be tempted by the lovely lady.

The responsibilities of running Breeze Hill have fallen on Isabella’s shoulders after her brother was found dead in the swamps along the Natchez Trace and a suspicious fire devastated their crops, almost destroyed their home, and left her father seriously injured. Even with Connor’s help, Isabella fears she’ll lose her family’s plantation. Despite her growing feelings for the handsome Irish carpenter, she seriously considers accepting her wealthy and influential neighbor’s proposal of marriage.

Soon, though, Connor realizes someone is out to eliminate the Bartholomew family. Can he set aside his own feelings to keep Isabella safe?

 

 

The Promise of Breeze Hill (A Natchez Trace Novel)

Welcome, Pam! It is so very nice to have you here today! I loved reading your latest book The Promise of Breeze Hill & learning some history about the Natchez Trace. Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to stop by. Let’s start out with a few getting to know you questions and then we’ll chat about the book.

Q:  What is your favorite season, and why?

road-1072823_640Pam:  As I get older, I’m becoming more and more enamored with fall. Years ago, I wasn’t that fond of fall. The cawing of crows, the business of my seasonal day job at the time seemed to overshadow the beauty and the coolness after a hot and humid Mississippi summer. But now, I look forward to the cool days and even cooler evenings and the beautiful red and gold leaves.

Trisha:  Fall is a beautiful time of year, no doubt, and such a nice break from the intense heat of summer.

 

Q:  What is the best part of your day?

Pam:  Waking up. Seeing the entire day stretching before me and knowing that I can accomplish anything that I set my hand to on that day.

Trisha:  Yes, there is something special about the morning. Watching the sun come up and knowing the day is full of possibilities.

 

Q:  What are some of your favorite CF reads from 10 years ago, or further?

books-315677_640Pam:  Francine Rivers’ Redeeming Love will always be a favorite. It’s the retelling of Gomer and Hosea in a California gold rush setting. Ms. Rivers took a hard situation and made us care deeply about Sarah/Angel.

 

Q:  If we took a peek at your “recently played” music, who would we find?

Pam:  Well, I’m not as much a fan of music as my husband is. When I’m home alone, I mostly work in silence. But most recently, you’d find me listening to The Boler Family, which just so happens to be my husband’s sister and her family. We had a singing at our church, and I recorded it live for Facebook. Amateur recording of course. But when I do listen, it’s mostly Southern Gospel. Karen Peck and New River. And I’m partial to local talent. Jason Davidson, and The Renfroes are awesome and can be found on Youtube.

Trisha:  I too enjoy Southern Gospel. I’ll have to check out Karen Peck & New River.

 

Q:  Did the plotline or the characters come first?

blur-1869579_640Pam:  Would the fact that I knew I was going to write about an indentured servant in The Promise of Breeze Hill be plot or character? I guess it’s a little of both, huh? Then a bit of the character comes to me during research. As the character takes shape, then more of the plot is revealed. So, it’s very much a back and forth scenario. But, generally, one small part of the plot is first. Or maybe one small part of the character is first. Goodness, that’s convoluted, and I’ll have to think about that some more. 🙂

Trisha:  I understand, sometimes both come at the same time.

 

Q:  Which character took you by surprise?

Pam:  My characters always surprise me, but for Promise, I’d say the biggest surprise was Mr. Bartholomew, Isabella’s father. He has a whole fascinating backstory that comes out during the course of the story.

Trisha:  I did enjoy Mr. Bartholomew’s history. He is a fascinating character for sure.

 

Q:  What was the latest you stayed up working on this story?

desk-1148994_640Pam:  Hmmm, three or four o’clock in the morning, maybe. Then get up three hours later and start again. All of that is a hazy fog…

Trisha:  Wow! I think I would have fallen asleep at my computer before I made it to 4 o’clock.

 

Q:  What is something that didn’t make it into the final copy?

Pam:  Nothing of import. But I suppose if it had been important, it would have been in the final copy, huh? 🙂 Seriously, there were some minor half-baked scene ideas that ended up on the cutting-room floor before I turned in the manuscript. There wasn’t anything deleted after that, but more some threads that were pulled out and made stronger during the editing stages.

Trisha:  Thank you Pam for coming by for a visit today! It was fun chatting with you and learning more about Breeze Hill.

Pam:  Thank you so much for having me on your blog, Trisha. What a blessing to get a chance to connect with your and your readers.

 

*** GIVEAWAY ***

Pam Hillman is giving away 1 (one) copy of her book “The Promise of Breeze Hill” The winner may choose a paper copy or e-copy (paper copy USA only). Please review the policies here. The giveaway will be open for one week. At the close of the giveaway period the winner will be contacted via email and announced on this page. Return daily during the giveaway period to tweet for bonus entries.

 To Enter the Giveaway: 

1.)  Leave a blog post comment answering the following question:
“Are you a morning person or a night owl? ”

2.) CLICK HERE to enter the Rafflecopter entry form.

***** GIVEAWAY ENDED *****
Winner:  Tami L.

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Magnolia Storms by: Janet W. Ferguson

Synopsis:

Maggie Marovich couldn’t save her father or her home from Hurricane Katrina, but she’s dedicated her life to meteorology so she can warn others when the monster storms approach. Except…she works three hours inland and rarely risks returning to her childhood hometown of Ocean Springs, Mississippi. Both her single-parent sister and the ship pilot Maggie once loved refused to leave the Coast, despite Maggie’s requests. Now a hurricane’s headed toward Mississippi, and Maggie’s sister is seriously injured, leaving Maggie little choice but to head south—into the storm.

The water and tides flow through Josh Bergeron’s veins, and he can’t imagine giving up piloting—even for the love of his life, the infuriating Magnolia Marovich. He tried to move on without her, marrying and having a child. But after his wife abandons him and his little boy, his career choice is threatened by the weight of his parental responsibilities. Moving next door to Maggie’s sister and sharing their child care seems like the perfect set-up. Until Maggie blows back into town.

Being forced to lean on Josh for help washes up the wreckage in Maggie’s faith. Where was God during the destruction of Katrina? Why do some prayers seem to go unanswered? Between the hurricane looming in the Gulf and another gale raging in her heart, can Maggie overcome her past and find the trust to truly live?

My Review:

I enjoyed the rich threads of faith seamlessly woven throughout this story, and the reminder that even when bad things happen (and they will happen dear ones) that God never leaves us, and He will bring us through the storm.

For Magnolia “Maggie” Marovich, hurricane Katrina was a life-altering event. Like so many who lived through the storm, it changed her life and that of her family. As I was reading the story, I kept wishing that Maggie would have come to the realization that God never left her. She teetered on the edge of that truth for what seemed to me a long time, wrestling with the truth she already knew.

The story was written with such vivid imaginary, that it didn’t take much to imagine myself there in the story with the characters. I enjoyed the tender, heart-warming moments between Josh’s sweet 3-year old son and Maggie, and yes, of course the reawakening of love between Josh & Maggie as well.

This is the first book I’ve read by Janet, and I look forward to reading more. I give this story 4-stars and would happily recommend it to anyone who enjoys reading honest, heartfelt Christian fiction.

(I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including netgalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own.)

Favorite Quote:

“Sooner or later, you must decide, ‘Though He slay me, still I will trust Him.’ Know that He is with you when you pass through the rough waters of life.”

About the Author:

JanetW.FergusonJanet W. Ferguson grew up in Mississippi and received a degree in Banking and Finance from the University of Mississippi. She has served her church as a children’s minister and a youth volunteer. An avid reader, she worked as a librarian at a large public high school. Janet and her husband have two grown children, one really smart dog, and a few cats that allow them to share the space.

Web Page // Goodreads // Facebook // Twitter // Amazon //

 

 

Magnolia Storms (A Coastal Hearts Novel) (release date: 9/15/17)

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The Promise of Breeze Hill (A Natchez Trace Novel) by: Pam Hillman

Synopsis:

Natchez, MS; 1791
Anxious for his brothers to join him on the rugged frontier along the Mississippi River, Connor O’Shea has no choice but to indenture himself as a carpenter in exchange for their passage from Ireland. But when he’s sold to Isabella Bartholomew of Breeze Hill Plantation, Connor fears he’ll repeat past mistakes and vows not to be tempted by the lovely lady.

The responsibilities of running Breeze Hill have fallen on Isabella’s shoulders after her brother was found dead in the swamps along the Natchez Trace and a suspicious fire devastated their crops, almost destroyed their home, and left her father seriously injured. Even with Connor’s help, Isabella fears she’ll lose her family’s plantation. Despite her growing feelings for the handsome Irish carpenter, she seriously considers accepting her wealthy and influential neighbor’s proposal of marriage.

Soon, though, Connor realizes someone is out to eliminate the Bartholomew family. Can he set aside his own feelings to keep Isabella safe?

My Review:

I felt as if I was right there on the porch of that beautiful antebellum home, sipping on tea and then strolling along the grape arbor. Pam writes such a beautiful captivating story. A story with realistic, flawed characters that touch your heart and linger in your mind long after you’ve read the final pages.

Isabella has suffered great loss in her family, and she is shouldering the weight of not only the future of the plantation but that of her family as well. Her focus is on that of bringing in this next crop of cotton, and in rebuilding the wing of their plantation home that was burned out.

Connor hides his past hurt and distrust of others behind a strong work ethic and a desire to reunite with his brothers. It isn’t often that you find a male heroine who has self-doubt, but I found that it really made him more realistic and gave the reader a deeper glimpse into who he is. Connor is now on my list of favorite unconventional hero’s. I must add that I really enjoyed the teasing side of him, that showed his fun personality.

The historical setting of this book along the Natchez Trace isn’t a place I’ve read about before, and I really enjoyed learning about this piece of American history.  Some day I’d like to travel the National Park highway along the Natchez Trace and see the sights.

Bottom line, this is a fantastic book. The characters are dynamic and realistic, the story is well researched and written. The plot moves along and kept me turning the pages long into the night. I highly recommend this delightful story!

(I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including NetGalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own.)

Favorite Quote:

“She trembled at the realization that God had been merciful to her even as she wallowed in her grief. Even as she had lashed out at Him, blaming Him for everything that had ever happened in her life, when she should have run toward him, just as Job did.”

About the Author:

PamHillmanCBA Bestselling author PAM HILLMAN was born and raised on a dairy farm in Mississippi and spent her teenage years perched on the seat of a tractor raking hay. In those days, her daddy couldn’t afford two cab tractors with air conditioning and a radio, so Pam drove an Allis Chalmers 110. Even when her daddy asked her if she wanted to bale hay, she told him she didn’t mind raking. Raking hay doesn’t take much thought so Pam spent her time working on her tan and making up stories in her head. Now, that’s the kind of life every girl should dream of.

Web page // Twitter // Goodreads // Facebook //

The Promise of Breeze Hill (A Natchez Trace Novel)

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