Monday, July 30, 2018

"The Hope of Azure Springs" by Rachel Fordham

About this book:

  “Seven years ago, orphaned and alone, Em finally arrived at a new home in Iowa after riding the orphan train. But secrets from her past haunt her, and her new life in the Western wilderness is a rough one. When her guardian is shot and killed, Em, now nineteen, finally has the chance to search for her long-lost sister, but she won't be able to do it alone.
  For Azure Springs Sheriff Caleb Reynolds, securing justice for the waifish and injured Em is just part of his job. He's determined to solve every case put before him in order to impress his parents and make a name for himself. Caleb expects to succeed. What he doesn't expect is the hold this strange young woman will have on his heart.
  Debut author Rachel Fordham invites historical romance readers to the charming town of Azure Springs, Iowa, where the people care deeply for one another and, sometimes, even fall in love.”

Series: As of now, no.

Spiritual Content- Prayers; Talks about God & prayers; ‘H’s are not capital when referring to God; Mentions of God; Mentions of prayers & praying; Mentions of churches, church going, & ministers; A few mentions of blessings & being blessed; A few mentions of angels; A couple mentions of sin & a sinner;
             *Note: A mention of a man who is a close relative of the devil; A mention of seeing the devil in a man’s eyes; A mention of a man with the devil behind him & having evil excitement; A mention of evil men in a story.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: a ‘darn’, a ‘stupid’, a ‘what in blazes’, and three forms of ‘blasted’; A few mentions of curses (said, not written); Some sarcasm & eye rolling; Prologue is after Em was shot, therefore blood/bleeding, pain, & passing out (up to semi-detailed); Being kidnapped & pain (up to semi-detailed); Seeing a fight, blood/bleeding, & death (up to semi-detailed); Many mentions of a murder (shooting and hanging), a body, burying the body, shootings, blood/bleeding, wounds, & pain (up to semi-detailed); Mentions of a war & deaths; Mentions of fevers & deaths; Mentions of an accidental death (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of hangings & gallows; Mentions of a fight, a death, & injuries/bruises; Mentions of robberies, crimes, & criminals; Mentions of stealing; Mentions of a fire, burns, & pain (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of intruders, & them causing a ruckus; Mentions of cigars/cigarettes, tobacco, & smoking; Mentions of saloons, drinking, & drunks; Mentions of gossip & rumors; Mentions of hunting & killing animals for food; A few mentions of a public hanging of a young boy; A few mentions of saloon brawls & injuries; A few mentions of hatred; A few mentions of switches & whippings; A few mentions of privies and the smell; A few mentions of dead animals & rotting (barely-above-not-detailed); A couple mentions of jealousy; A couple mentions of throwing up.

Sexual Content- a fingers to lip touch, two cheek kisses, a forehead kiss, and a barely-above-not-detailed kiss; Wanting to kiss & staring at another’s lips (barely-above-not-detailed); Touches, Dancing, Nearness, & Hand holding (barely-above-not-detailed); Noticing; A man tries to get Em to work at his saloon & another man unwantedly touches Em (barely-above-not-detailed, it’s hinted what some girls do there, but never said); Mentions of a (forehead) kiss & kissing; A few mentions of wanting to kiss (or not); A few mentions of married couples kissing; A few mentions of flirting; A couple mentions of a couple living like they were married when they weren’t (they were not an item at all); A couple mentions of “tainted” women; A couple mentions of stories with kissing; A couple mentions of reputations; A mention of a young girl selling herself (she did not); A mention of getting the wrong impression of seeing a man near a girl’s skirts; A mention of a man looking Em up and down; A mention of jealousy; Love, falling in love, & the emotions;
             *Note: A few mentions of girls’ curves & the lack of a girl’s curves.

-Em Cooper, age 19-20
-Caleb Reynolds
                                P.O.V. switches between them
                                                 Set in 1881
                                                        331 pages

Pre Teens-
New Teens-
Early High School Teens-
Older High School Teens-
My personal Rating-
Well, I’m a crying mess now.
This book had its really sad moments, y’all, but that happy epilogue is what got to me.
For a debut author, I thought “The Hope of Azure Springs” was good. I think the dialogue could have been improved, but it was still a good read. This “romance” story is as far from insta-love as you can get, and I love it. Talk about refreshing. Em is regarded as plain (which I do have to say that I believe no one is plain) and Caleb (who could be a bit dense at times, albeit) was more like a friend at first for the most part. The Spiritual Content was light, but so was the romance content. Their very light romance was based on their characters and attitude and it was so refreshing.
Y’all know orphan care is so near to my heart, so it’s probably why I enjoyed this story so much. I will be watching for news about the author’s next book.

See y’all on Wednesday with a new review!

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.
*I received this book for free from the Publisher (Revell) for this honest review.

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