Historical novels focus on faith, love and family

Published: Thursday, Nov. 22 2012 5:00 a.m. MST

Seven years ago, Faith Frisbee left Mustang, running from a situation she didn't know how to face. But her father's death and a determination to confront her fear bring her back to claim the family farm. Even though she comes accompanied by eight young boys who were placed in her care, the single men line up to help the attractive young woman work her farm. But when their romantic intentions are spurned, they all suddenly have better things to do on their own farms — that is until Joe Condie comes to town.

Joe's first attempts to strike up a friendship with Faith at their Mormon ward meetings or activities are met with icy politeness. But he persists in offering his friendship and assistance. In spite of herself, Faith eventually acknowledges his sincerity and warms up to his courteous and persistent advances. However, before she consents to marriage, there is a secret she must share.

Although it is a fairly predictable romance with a murder mystery thrown in, the author tells a good story with likable characters that keeps the reader turning the pages.

— Rosemarie Howard

"THE HEIRS OF SOUTHBRIDGE," by Jennie Hansen, Covenant Communications, $15.99, 200 pages (f)

In a place that should have been a refuge, Southbridge plantation holds some painful moments and secrets, for young Clayton and his brother Travis. On a day that should have been filled with family love and support at the loss of Kathryn, mother of the two boys, a family feud erupted instead.

But the bad blood will not be stilled, and now two boys and their father must try to survive as fugitives while living as cowboys.

Clayton has an unfulfilled desire for a strong and stable family. His father is now dead, and Travis has left his life to follow his own path. The loneliness is more than he can bear, so he seeks out his roots.

On a visit to Southbridge, a now-adult Clayton is greeted with a loaded gun and a family who will stop at nothing to own Southbridge as Clayton finds another obstacle in claiming his heritage and finding peace in his weary heart.

Jennie Hansen's "The Heirs of Southbridge" will transport readers right into the past and stir powerful emotions through the tragedies and triumphs of the family. Hansen does briefly introduce a character who is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

— Becky Robinette Wright

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