31 October 2014

The Brickmaker's Bride by Judith Miller, Book review

  • Series: Refined by Love
  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (October 7, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764212550
  • Also available in KINDLE format


(From the back cover)

In the clay-rich hills of the newly founded state of West Virginia, two families tentatively come together to rebuild a war-torn brickmaking business.

Ewan McKay has immigrated to West Virginia with his aunt and uncle, promising to trade his skills in the clay business for financial help. Uncle Hugh purchases a brickmaking operation from a Civil War widow and her daughter, and it's Ewan's job to get the company up and running again.

Ewan seeks help from Laura, the former owner's daughter, and he quickly feels a connection with her, but she's being courted by another man--a lawyer with far more social clout and money than Ewan. Resolving that he'll make the brickworks enough of a success that he can become a partner in the business and be able to afford to bring his sisters over from Ireland, Ewan pours all his energy into the new job.

But when Hugh signs a bad business deal, all Ewan's hard work is put in jeopardy. As his hopes for the future crumble, Laura reveals something surprising. Can she help him save the brickworks, and will Ewan finally get a shot at winning her heart?
"Miller launches her new Refined by Love series . . . written with an elegance that reflects the social graces of the time. Readers will enjoy intriguing themes of personal, professional, and spiritual integrity; prejudice; and caring for those in need." --Booklist

"A well-constructed plot and believable characters demonstrate why Miller is popular with fans of historical fiction and romance. The characters' faith is woven seamlessly into their actions and is organically integrated into the plot, making this title a must-read." --Library Journal starred review.

My thoughts:

This is my first novel by Judith Miller and was a very pleasant experience. I needed something entertaining, light but historically sound and The Brickmaker's Bride is all this and more.

Drawn against the background of the Civil War aftermath, this story paints a vivid portrait of the mistrust of immigrants at a time when emotions were already running high. Miller's plot was certainly engaging and her characters well defined. You cannot but have your favourites and the slow but sweet development between Ewan and Laura, the two love interests, will reach out to any romantic heart. 

Finally, the best part for me was the historical research the author has obviously done to bring readers this most solid of craftmanship, that of brick making! 

Note: This Christian novel is the first of a series called Refined by Love.

4 Stars.

(Source Richard VerValen's brickmaking machine circa 1852)

Landing page:

Meet the Author:

Judith Miller is an award-winning author whose avid research and love for history are reflected in her bestselling novels. When time permits, Judy enjoys traveling, visiting historical settings, and scrapbooking the photographs from her travel expeditions. 

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from LITFUSE PUBLICITY as part of it's promotion. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC 16 CFR, Part 255 'Guides concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising. I was not asked to write a positive review and all opinions expressed are entirely my own. 

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