Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Hearts Made Whole by Jody Hedlund

1865 Windmill Point, Michigan
Can She Forgive the Hurting Man Who Costs Her the Role She Loves?

After her father's death, Caroline Taylor has grown confident running the Windmill Point Lighthouse. But in 1865 Michigan, women aren't supposed to have such roles, so it's only a matter of time before the lighthouse inspector appoints a new keeper--even though Caroline has nowhere else to go and no other job available to her.

Ryan Chambers is a Civil War veteran still haunted by the horrors of battle. He's secured the position of lighthouse keeper mostly for the isolation--the chance to hide from his past is appealing. He's not expecting the current keeper to be a feisty and beautiful woman who's angry with him for taking her job and for his inability to properly run the light. When his failings endanger others, he and Caroline realize he's in no shape to run the lighthouse, but he's unwilling to let anyone close enough to help. Caroline feels drawn to this wounded soul, but with both of them relying on that single position, can they look past their loss to a future filled with hope...and possibly love?

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I enjoy reading anything Jody Hedlund writes. Hearts Made Whole was no exception. I was quickly drawn into the character's lives from the very first pages. What I love about Caroline is her strong, mothering nature for her siblings. Family means doing what she has to do for them. She loves taking care of the lighthouse. It isn't a burden to her. After her mother died and her father got older she began to do more and more of both their jobs. She doesn't feel angry because of it. She does her daily routine with joy. 

Ryan is a broken, shell of the man he used to be but when he came to the lighthouse we begin to see glimpses of that man. The war has scared him in many ways. I never thought about how the older wars effected those who fought in them. They must have had the same types of nightmares as our men and women do now. Caroline learns to respect him quite early on and doesn't judge him for his shortcomings but believes he will be able to over come them and become whole again. 

We get to learn so much about the workings of the lighthouse and how important it was back then. Lives depended on the light keepers but there was still much danger and at times, death. I have always thought lighthouses were interesting and even beautiful, but I never thought about how much work went into running them. We also get a look at how challenging it was right after the war for those coming home to find jobs and how scarce medication and doctors were. I think reading is a great way to learn about history when you have an author who cares about writing things the way they happened in a certain time period. It has made me love history in a way I never did before.  

I highly recommend this book and the others in the series. 

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Jody Hedlund is the author of over ten novels, including Love Unexpected, Captured by Love, Unending Devotion, The Preacher's Bride, and A Noble Groom, winner of the 2014 Carol Award for historical romance. She makes her home in Michigan, not far from the lighthouses she writes about, and loves hearing from readers on Facebook and her blog at JodyHedlund.com


HER BOOKS

The Hearts of Faith Series...
The Preacher's Bride
The Doctor's Lady
Rebellious Heart

The Michigan Brides Collection...
Unending Devotion
A Noble Groom
Captured by Love

The Beacons of Hope Series...
Out of the Storm: A Novella
Love Unexpected
Hearts Made Whole
Out of the Storm

The Noblest Knights Series
The Vow: A Novella
An Uncertain Choice
A Daring Sacrifice - March 2016



In compliance with new regulations introduced by the Federal Trade Commission,  as part of every Web or Amazon review that I was provided a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

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