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A Heart Most Worthy

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Good book

Slightly confusing. Not this authors best but still a good read.

posted by 7206512 on June 26, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

A solid historical fiction

A Heart Most Worthy follows three shopgirls of completely different personalities and backgrounds, joining them as they navigate family, life and love. My favorite is Annamaria; she's sweet and kind and is learning when it's good to be rebellious. My least favorite is J...
A Heart Most Worthy follows three shopgirls of completely different personalities and backgrounds, joining them as they navigate family, life and love. My favorite is Annamaria; she's sweet and kind and is learning when it's good to be rebellious. My least favorite is Julietta, by far; I found her to be dense and selfish, rather than fiery and passionate, and she made it hard for me to connect with her. Because the book is written from several points of view, Julietta also made it hard for me to connect with the other characters because every time I read through one of her sections, she yanked me out of the illusion.

While A Heart Most Worthy wasn't really my kind of book, I still enjoyed learning about Italian immigrants in America. I didn't realize that the people we consider to be Italians considered themselves to be grouped by region, not country, e.g. Sicilians, Avellinos, Calabrese. The little nuances of Italian life were also surprising and unique touches to the novel.

Siri Mitchell is, without doubt, an excellent writer, but this book just didn't appeal to me the way I'd hoped it would. However, if you like historicals and Christian fiction (this one is much more religious than She Walks in Beauty), then A Heart Most Worthy would be worth picking up.

[This book was received for review from the publisher.]

posted by whatinabox on July 14, 2011

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  • Posted July 17, 2011

    Siri's Best Book Ever!

    I was really looking forward to Siri's next book and was not at all disappointed! I really connected with the characters. As usual, her historical setting was thorough and accurate. I really felt I was getting a look into a period of American history from someone who lived it. I enjoyed the story line. I also felt I was learning about our forefathers (mothers!) without feeling like I read a textbook. I can't wait for the next book!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 17, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Loved it!

    I loved that the book is about everyday life and situations in 1918, it's not about politics, exact dates, and other thing we've already learned in history books. It's about women's lives at home, at work, in love, and with friends. This is what I love to read about!

    There are a lot of characters in this book, the three women who work in Madame Fortier's dress shop, and two older women, Madame herself and her customer, Mrs. Quinn. All of the women are very different and lead very different lives, but they all come together at the dress shop.

    The romances in this story are absolutely swoon-worthy! The little moments are just so romantic. And all three of the the ladies' love stories are completely different from each others'.

    It's an eye opening look at city life at the time and glimpse at a piece of history we don't often see. Lovely characters with engrossing stories make this book a keeper!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2011

    Love love love

    This is such a good book. I loved the way siri made each character believable and loveable

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  • Posted April 10, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A great historical novel

    Recently I had the opportunity to review a new book from Bethany House Publishers called A Heart Most Worthy, by Siri Mitchell. I've read other books by Ms. Mitchell in the past and have enjoyed them greatly, so I was excited about the arrival of this new book.

    Siri Mitchell has a true gift for taking times and places in American history that I don't know much about (and I'm a huge history fan!) and making me feel like I've been suddenly been dropped into that world alongside her characters. This book tells the stories of four women living in Boston in 1918, all Italian-American immigrants, all trying to find a balance between the worlds they came from and their new lives in America.

    Since this book does tell the stories of four different women all at the same time, there isn't quite the level of in-depth character development as some of the other books by this author, but I still felt like I got to know these women and was deeply invested in their lives by the end of the book. Overall, the characters and places are written with great, descriptive language that really brought everything to life for me. I appreciated getting a glimpse into the lives and struggles of immigrants to our country, in a place and time much different from my own- this book is a history lesson wrapped up in a gripping and entertaining novel.

    If you're a lover of historical fiction, I think you'll really enjoy this book.

    Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher to review for myself. I was not compensated in any other way, was under no obligation to write a positive review, and all opinions posted here are mine and mine alone.

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  • Posted April 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    One of the best books of this year

    Wow! This book is like a sweet Vidalia onion that's been caramelized - lots of layers and all full of yummy goodness. I could analyze this for pages and pages but I'll try and restrain myself. ;o) It starts with the cover. Isn't it drool-worthy? I'm in total envy over that dress.

    The author tackles surface issues like the the problems the Italian immigrants faced both from outsiders and from their own prejudices against other Italians. Tradition and family was all many of them had but sometimes the same stubborn pride that helped them survive in this new country insulated them and even caused them to refuse help they needed.

    What makes a healthy relationship? What is most important in love? All the main characters struggle with this on some level or another. Whether it's 1918 or 2011, people still mistake lust for love, they still think they're unworthy for whatever reason, they still fear what will happen if they trust... and sometimes they think it's too late once they've made mistakes. Sometimes people try to manipulate people and call it love.

    Then you have the political undertones. People who think violence is the way to bring about change and that the government should do whatever they want. People who don't mind stealing, killing or dying in order to make their plans come to fruition. It sounds eerily like what is going on here and around the world. Yet you meet them and sympathize with them and want to be able to help them see what they're doing is hurting themselves and others.

    The three main characters couldn't be more different. Add in the Madame Fortier and you have four women who will stay with me for some time. They loved deeply, made mistakes, kept secrets, and showed a tenacity of spirit that made me love them all. From the beginning to end you can see each of them grow and change in individual ways that reflected the personal journey each had to take.

    There were also some yummy heroes that you won't want to miss. Each had his own strengths (and weaknesses) that perfectly matched the girl he was destined to be with. Some had unflappable faith and determination, some patience that would try a saint, some were self-sacrificing... and some were forgiving and generous. All were romantic because true romance is loving in a way that brings out the best in them and is concentrated on their needs instead of your own.

    This is going on my list of best books of 2011. I want to thank Bethany House for providing me my copy in exchange for my honest review.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 4, 2011

    A Heart Most Worthy by Siri Mitchell

    I've been doing the booksneeze program, which works through the Thomas Nelson publishing group, for a while now, and I've enjoyed it so much. Honestly, I don't have the money to go buy new books for me- especially since I eat through them like they're Turkish Delights:) When I learned that Bethany House Publishers had a comparable program, I was über excited. I love Tracie Peterson and authors like her. When I got the e-mail that listed a Siri Mitchell novel, "A Heart Most Worthy" among the latest new books, I was thrilled. Siri Mitchell is one of my favorite novelists- along with Ted Dekker:) What a pair, huh? I received the books and it really is a fantastic book. "A Heart Most Worthy" takes place in 1918 Boston- in the midst of the Great Italian Emigration. Quite a few of the characters are Italian or of Italian descent. There are Italian words sprinkled in- almost like how Amish words are sprinkled in an Amish fiction novel. The novel revolves around three seamstresses that work in Madame Fortier's opulent dress shop. Julietta, in my own opinion, is a bit of a flirt; Annamaria is really shy (pretty different from Julietta), but she falls in love with the wrong guy. And Luciana is secretive with a mysterious past. With plenty more original characters and a wonderful plot, "A Heart Most Worthy" earns 5 out of 5 stars and would be recommended to any romantic or historic reader:)

    Oh, by the way, because of the law thing (the one that applies to the booksneeze books as well), I didn't have to give this book a good review. I received this book for free from the publishers. So there's no conflict of interest. I just really really like Siri Mitchell. The whole "free" thing was like the cherry on top:)

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  • Posted March 10, 2011

    Historical romance with three compelling heroines

    A Heart Most Worthy by Siri Mitchell is a historical romance with both depth and heart. Three very different Italian young woman work for famed dressmaker Madame Fortier in Boston at the end of World War I. Juliana Giordano revels in her beauty and wants romance in her life, and Angelo Moretti's smoldering brown eyes are filled with both romance and a hint of danger, making him much more attractive than Mauro Vitali, a doctor she's known most of her life. Annamaria Rossi is beginning to strain against the limited existence in which her position as eldest daughter has placed her. Expected to serve the entire family and never marry, she is open to the invitation she sees in the eyes of Rafaello Zanfini, the Sicilian vegetable stand owner's son, but he is forbidden, first because she must never leave the family, and second because he is Sicilian. Luciana Conti fled her estate and wealth in Rome after the assassination of her father, the Count of Rome, bringing only her grandmother, the contessa, whose mind has drifted away since the tragic night that left them homeless, poor, and hunted by the anarchist who has promised to kill them both. Luciana thought to find safety in America, but she has seen the man here again, on her very street, making every day filled with fear. Mitchell has turned from writing humorous chick lit to intelligent historical romances, but she brings the same light dexterous touch to these novels, filling them with fascinating heroines, strong heroes, and interesting conflicts. She truly brings to life each of these women and makes the reader empathize with each, even Juliana's flirtation with danger. Mitchell reminds readers of the terrible prejudice against Italians at the beginning of the twentieth century, as well as the danger of the anarchists who were creating terror through bombs and assassinations around the world. Somehow Mitchell manages to throw together the prejudice, anarchy, romance, faith, gown-making, and the Spanish Influenza together to make a compelling story readers will be hard-pressed to put down.

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  • Posted March 9, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Experience The Power of Love in the worst of times. Will love conquer all?

    Three ladies living in the 1900's at a crucial time in history. All united by their employer, Madame Fortier, who owns a gown making shop. There are experts in what they do and Madame can't afford to lose any of them.

    Julietta Giordano is the embroider who has been with her the longest. She longs to be the object of love's desire and thus finds herself constantly walking the streets of Boston making sure all the men can see her. Yet what Julietta fails to see is that the life long, child hood friend of her brothers who is a doctor now, Mauro Vitali, longs to win her heart. But the passion within Julietta's heart desires much more.

    Annamaria Rossi is the smocker for Madame Fortier. She is usually quiet and has resolved her life to being single and taking care of her family since she is the oldest daughter of her family and thus the responsibility falls directly on her shoulders. Annamaria longs for the love and romance that everyone around her seems to be finding, until one fateful day she is sent to the Zanfini's for tomatoes and discovers a most beautiful, caring man there named Rafaello. The only problem is he is a Sicilian which is considered forbidden by her family.

    Luciana Conti is the beader at the gown shop, a skill she learned from a life that seems so long ago, when her father the Count of Rome was assassinated and left her and her grandmother fleeing for their lives. Now living in disguise in Boston, she longs for the life she had but since seeing her fathers killer on her street, she has to remain hidden.

    All three of these women will be completely shaken upside down in their wishes and desires for love and the circumstances that each will face will change them forever.

    I received this book, A Heart Most Worthy by Siri Mitchell, compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review. I LOVED it. There is so much rich history held within the pages of this amazing novel. It takes place at the beginning of World War 1 with the Italian Migration to America. They were considered the worst of people since they came to America with different cultures, different language and pretty much kept to themselves. Not only that, the Spanish Influenza took place during this time and completely wiped out huge populations of people living in towns and cities. I would rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars for providing the reader an inside look into the life of the Italian Emigrants.

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    Posted June 8, 2012

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    Posted July 13, 2011

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