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Friday, July 31, 2015

Book Review - The Road Home by Kathleen Shoop (The Letter Series Book 2) plus $15 Amazon Giveaway - 3 Winners!!

Find your way home...

1891—Living separately for three years, fourteen-year-old twins, Katherine and Tommy Arthur, have done their best to make each boarding house feel like home. But unrest grows as they are driven to questionable actions just to survive. Meanwhile their desperate mother is confronted with breaking yet another promise to her children. Then a miracle descends. Hope rises on a cold, rainy night and changes everything. If Jeanie could just get word to Katherine and Tommy, she knows she can set their lives right again. Agitators, angels, and dangerous “saviors” illuminate the Arthurs’ unmatched determination and smarts.

1905—Though she tries to forget the awful years that hurt so much, the memories still haunt Katherine. Now, tearful mourners at her mother’s funeral force her to revisit a time in her life that both harmed and saved her in the most unexpected ways. Tommy grieves his mother’s passing as well. He too is thrust backward, compelled to rediscover the events in his life that shaped the man he has become. Will he commit to reconstructing his broken life? The Arthurs come to understand that forgiveness is the only way back to hope, the only way to find all that was good in the misfortune that transformed their lives forever.

Book available to buy from the following sites...

"Kathleen Shoop has woven a story that crosses over several years with events that define lives. Katherine and Tommy are two characters that will stand out in my mind for a long time. The way the story blends back and forth between the two time periods is seamless and enjoyable, slowly painting a whole picture for the reader to see. I have not read the first book in this series, but I honestly feel that this one stands alone beautifully. You will take a journey with these characters that will evoke emotions and entertain you. This is my favorite kind of historical fiction; emotional and fun at the same time. I would highly recommend this to anyone who loves a great book." 
Reviewed By Kathryn Bennett for Readers’ Favorite- 5 stars!

"I loved this riveting tale of hope and redemption. The Road Home comes to life with gorgeous imagery and a setting that eased me seamlessly and beautifully back and forth in time. Each character stood out, coaxing me into her story, making me want more. With the turn of every page there’s a revelation, something hidden or something wonderful and unexpected. The Road Home is a must-read for any book lover and a perfect follow-up to The Last Letter." 
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Melissa Foster

Letter Series Book 1 - The Last Letter

A Father’s Deceit
A Husband’s Betrayal
A Loved One’s Death
A Mother’s Choice
A Daughter’s Resentment
A Time to Forgive

For every daughter who thinks she knows her mother’s story…

Katherine wouldn’t have believed it if she hadn’t found the last letter…

Katherine Arthur’s dying mother arrives on her doorstep, forcing her to relive a past she wanted to forget. When Katherine was young, the Arthur family had been affluent city dwellers until shame sent them running for the prairie, into the unknown. Taking her family, including young Katherine, to live off the land was the last thing Jeanie Arthur had wanted, but she would do her best to make a go of it. For Jeanie’s husband Frank it had been a world of opportunity. Dreaming, lazy Frank. But, it was a society of uncertainty — a domain of natural disasters, temptation, hatred, even death.

Ten-year-old Katherine had loved her mother fiercely, put her trust in her completely, but when there was no other choice, and Jeanie resorted to extreme measures on the prairie to save her family, she tore Katherine’s world apart. Now, seventeen years later, Katherine has found the truth — she has discovered the last letter. After years of anger, can Katherine find it in her heart to understand why her mother made the decisions that changed them all? Can she forgive and finally begin to heal before it’s too late?
Book available to buy from.......

Our Book Review
Having read and been fully captivated by the first book in the Letter Series. The Last Letter, I have been eagerly awaiting this second book and couldn't wait to jump in.  If you haven't read the first book don't worry as it can be easily read on its own as the author refers back to previous events, BUT in all honesty you will be missing such a touching story, the heart of what they have gone through whilst also getting to know the captivating Arthur family even more.

This is a story of  love, hope, regret, forgiveness and realizing not everything is as you believe it is. The story follows a mother's love for her children, her despair at not being together and the hardships they have all faced whilst being separated.  Jeanie Arthur is a character that reaches out to me from the pages and literally pulls away at my heart while reading her story, I could follow her journey of obstacles and how she overcomes them all day long.  The time period is 1890's when status and titles were completely different from today's world.  Now finding herself divorced from her addict & two timing husband, the world is massively different in how she is treated, penniless and unable to look after her two eldest children she makes the heart wrenching sacrifice to let them go and serve other families in the hope that they one day they will find a better life.

You will follow Jeannie, her daughter Katherine and son Tommy's determined story as they each tell their own tale after being ripped apart from one another throughout the book as it swaps between them as you read.  Unfortunately for both Katherine and Tommy their life wasn't what their mother hoped and they both had to endure the harshness of the times they found themselves in. Will they finally be reunited?

I've got to admit I was constantly apprehensive whilst reading on, anticipating what could go wrong for them, holding my breath as I read.  This was another realistic and compelling tale from a truly magnificent author, I am sooooo hanging on for more of the Arthur family's story, following on from where it left, hoping that it won't be too long.

Our Rating

About Kathleen Shoop
I have a PhD in Reading Education and have worked in schools for over twenty years. I work with teachers and their students in grades k-8 and am lucky to learn something new from them every time I walk through their doors. This experience was a huge help in writing LOVE AND OTHER SUBJECTS--a quirky, post-college coming of age story with a splash of fun romance.

My first novel, The Last Letter (2011 IPPY Gold Medal--Regional Fiction, Midwest, 2011 Indie Excellence Finalist Award for Historical Fiction and Regional Fiction, 2011 International Book Awards Finalist for Historical Fiction and Best New Fiction), was a fascinating trip through history, punctuated with fictional characters and events. The idea for the story grew from my great-great grandmother's letters (see My Dear Frank for the complete set of letters!) written during the year of her engagement to Frank Arthur. The beautiful letters are the inspiration for the novel, the seed from which The Last Letter's characters and their voices grew.

I've also written women's fiction--LOVE AND OTHER SUBJECTS-- and have written another historical fiction novel, AFTER THE FOG, set in 1948 in Donora, PA. AFTER THE FOG is also an award winning book--A finalist in the Eric Hoffer Book Awards, a silver IPPY and WINNER in the literary category of the National Indie Excellence Awards.

I adore writing historical fiction (The Letter series, After the Fog) but am having a blast writing romance like Home Again and Return to Love (Endless Love series) Thank you so much for the time you take to read.
Follow the author on the following sites...
Website   Facebook   Twitter   Pinterest   Google+   Goodreads   Amazon

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  1. I want to revisit the time when my younger brother was still alive and relive all the memories with him <3

  2. High School - only if I can have a do over though.

  3. I would definitely go back to high school and do it all over again.

  4. Sounds like a great book, I think my MIL would enjoy this

  5. I read and loved this book--I also love the entire series and everything else I have read by this author-her writing is superb! You will need a box of tissues but it will be worth it!

  6. Thank you so much for the fantastic and thoughtful review of The Road Home!!! I appreciate the time and consideration it took to read and share. So excited!!!!

    1. Never any hesitation to read the Letter Series Kathie, its fantastic as are you, only problem is I'm now desperate for more!!

  7. We haven't read the last letter but it's on my to-rest list! I'm a hopeless Romantic!

  8. The both of these books sound like something I would enjoy reading. I love the historical stories that go back and fourth in time. Thanks for sharing.


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