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Thad McKane comes to Goldtree to investigate...
Thad McKane comes to Goldtree to investigate reports of a bootlegging operation. Once he earns enough money from the sheriff work, he plans to use it to pay for his training to become a minister.
Thad is immediately drawn to the lovely young singer who performs in Asa Baxter's unusual opera house. But when he hears her practicing bawdy tunes, he wonders if she's far less innocent than she seems. And when Sadie appears to be part of the very crimes Thad has come to investigate, is there any hope the love blossoming between them will survive?
"Sawyer treats readers to love stories that speak to the heart."--Romantic Times
Posted June 19, 2012
Another Christian historical romance, and indeed with this book, what you see is what you get. This book has everything you would expect: romance, dashing romantic suitor, sweet heroine, Western town, evil vs. good, nice Christian message. So I cannot fault this book at all for being what it is.
The highlights of the book for me is Sadie. I was able to relate to her easily because she is a singer. I am a singer, too. And even one of my students said that the girl on the front of the book looks like me--nice compliment since the heroine is more then 10 years younger than I! And much thinner. I also enjoyed the way that the Bible and faith in God was woven so easily into the framework of the story. While the two main characters did lose their way, they came back to the Lord, and that was the key. I did like the way that evil was brought to justice in the book. That was probably the most clever part of the book.
I did not rate this book as high as the others I have read recently because I felt like I was reading the same old story. While the book has some good points and a few things that establish its uniqueness, I still felt all too often like I was reading the same story I had read lately. And I did not feel that I was able to connect with the story and characters the way I had with other novels in the genre--just my personal preference. I also felt the ending was very sappy and left a few unanswered questions. But in this book's case, I really would not read a sequel. I do not care about the characters enough to want to read a sequel.
I have agreed that the book deserves a four star rating because it does deliver what one would expect. Perhaps if I had read it at a different time and place, I may have connected with it more. But thankfully there is enough interest within it for me that I was able to read it in a relatively short period of time. It is a light read, and its simple message does come across. I liked the fact that the message was stressed that if you are doing something wrong and you know it is wrong and you still continue to do it, it is wrong--no matter what your reasons!
I was provided with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not financially compensated in any way, and all opinions are 100 percent mine.
Posted June 9, 2012
Sadie Wagner excitedly rushed into the house to share the letter she'd received from her cousin Sid, who'd moved from Indiana to Goldtree, Kansas. Sid had found her a job working in a mercantile owned by sisters Melva and Shelva Baxter and she would also be able to fulfill her dream of singing in an Opera House that their brother Asa, Sid's boss, was opening. She didn't know that Sid had ulterior motives in having her come to Goldtree. Sadie really needed a job because her step-father, the only papa she really knew since her father had died when she was very young, got hurt in the mines and was unable to work until his leg healed and there were no jobs in her hometown.
Thad McKane was hired by Goldtree's town council as sheriff when they started hearing that someone in the area had a bootlegging operation. Thad took the job even though he felt his true calling was to preach, as soon as he found the bootlegger he planned on moving on to preaching.
Thad was drawn to Sadie from the time he met her and took her for her first walk through town, when she asked about the opera house, he told her there wasn't one in town, this confused her since Sid had told her there was one opening soon. When she asked Sid about it he showed her where it was, it was a beautiful soundproof room under the mercantile where she was working. Sadie and Thad got closer and were falling in love and Sadie agreed to court him. Sid was not happy with the time they spent together and tried to come between them whenever he could.
Within a couple of weeks she was singing hymns and ballads on Friday and Saturday nights to a full house. Not long after that Asa asked if she would sing for private parties on Tuesday nights and the pay would be $5.00, $2.00 more than she was getting paid per night for Friday and Saturday. It would be three hours and it was by private invitation only and she was to tell no one about the Tuesday nights. When she saw the sheet music for the songs Asa wanted her to sing and the dress he wanted her to wear, she told him that she'd changed her mind. Asa threatened her with firing her completely and firing Sid also. He also told her that she couldn't spend anymore time with Thad, since he was the sheriff Asa was afraid Sadie would slip up and mention the Tuesday night singing. She needed the money to send home even more by this time as her step-father had died and her mother, sister and three brothers had no other income. She sang one night and couldn't do it again.
When Sid returned to town from a delivery he'd been on, she told him about the Tuesday nights. Sid confronted Asa and he threatened him and told Sid that if he went down, Sid and Sadie would go down with him because he would tell the sheriff they were in on the bootlegging operation. Sadie agreed to ride with Sid on a short delivery so they could talk. Thad came upon them and was going to arrest them but Sid asked to talk to him so they went behind a bush and the next thing Sadie heard was a gunshot and Sid was running back to the wagon and taking off. She kept turning around but never saw Thad come out of the bush. Now what was she going to do, her cousin killed the man she loved but had broken up with, she'd sung to men that were drinking and she felt she'd disappointed her papa all because she wanted to help her family and Asa threatened her. Where could she turn now?
Kim had me hooked from the first sentence when Sadie squealed with delight and went bursting through the door yelling because she'd gotten a letter from her cousin, and she kept me hooked throughout the entire book. This story was a wonderful read and I found it hard to put down. You really do need to go get this book and read it, you won't be disappointed.
Posted May 7, 2012
Some interesting moral lessons in a clean story
Sadie is a young woman who leaves home with the hope of assisting to her family's sustenance after her father is injured and no longer able to provide for them. She is invited to Goldtree, where she would be a mercantile clerk and had the opportunity to sing in the new opera house of the town. Innocent and with little experience outside the protection of home, Sadie learns that her singing dream and her responsibility as a provider for her family might become the greatest hindrance in her relationship with God. She has to face difficult choices and suffer the consequences of taking things on her own hands and despairing. At the same time, Tad, an aspiring preacher, is hired as a sheriff in order to uncover an illegal operation.
In the middle of her conflict, they find love. But this wonderful gift is imperiled by her apparent involvement in the activities that have the whole town in turmoil.
The story is very easy to read and highly predictable. The first two chapters make the rest of the story obvious, and even the flamboyant and exaggerated ending is expected since then. At that point, I practically decided that this read would be a chore, rather than something enjoyable, but the story grabbed my attention, and I really wanted to know what was going to happen in the next pages. However, the story is full of descriptions that enhance the senses, rather than the emotional conflict that the people involved are going through. This was distracting and makes the writing feel out of place and forcefully adapted to a current viewpoint, without considering the time or place where everything happens. This makes the story weak and boring at times, just like a cheap soap opera.
The end comes extremely abruptly and, instead of allowing me to remember the nice flow the story kept, I felt like the whole story was rushed and sort of pushed into a corner that has nothing to do with the enjoyable reading of the previous chapters. For instance, there is a scene at the end, that seems written by a girl dreaming with a sensual fairy tales, where she is the center of attention. Maybe this is exactly what the author intended, and I am pretty sure that there are people who will enjoy this, but this is not my preference.
Overall, this book is an easy and clean read, making it recommendable for spending a leisurely evening or even gifting it to a romantic teenager. Due to the moral conflict in the story, I can see it used in a study group, particulary if enhancing how crucial it is for no one to wander away God's Word.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany Publishers in exchange for my honest review. In no way has this biased my opinion on the book or on the author.
Posted April 30, 2012
After her father is injured in an accident, Sadie Wagner moves from her home in Dalton, Indiana to Goldtree, Kansas so that she can work and earn money to help support her family. Shortly after her arrival, Sadie meets Goldtree's handsome new sheriff, Thad and enjoys spending time and getting to know him better. But before long, she realizes she's inadvertently gotten herself into more than she bargained for, including being involved in an illegal boot-legging and gambling operation. There's also the matter of Sid, who isn't related to Sadie by blood, but grew up as her cousin. When Sadie arrives in Goldtree, it's Sid's agenda to make her his wife.
This was another great book by Kim Vogel Sawyer, she has a great way of making the reader feel as though they're in the middle of the story with the characters. She really tries to keep the story true to the setting and time period, down to even the smallest details. This is the second book I've read by her and both times I was easily able to get into the story and lose myself as I read. It's exactly the effect I'm looking for when I read fiction. I'd really love if Kim picked up the story again at a later time so we could follow the characters even more.
Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided for this review. All thoughts are my own and I was not required to post a positive review.
Posted April 29, 2012
Let the Song of Your Heart be God's Song!
Song of My Heart
by Kim Vogel Sawyer
Sadie Wagner has dreamed of using her gift to honor God. When her cousin Sid writes that there is a position in Goldtree, Kansas as a mercantile clerk and a possible singing position in the town's new opera house it seems to be an answer to prayer. With her step-father injured from a mining accident the family needs the money. With her parents blessing Sadie travels the long distance from Indiana to Kansas.
But Goldtree, Kansas has a hidden side that no one seems to be aware of. Thad McKane has just been hired as Goldtree's first sheriff. Rumors have reached Goldtree's mayor and bank president that an illegal liquor operation is in Goldtree! Secrecy is vital so that Goldtree's reputation is not ruined.
Sid and Sadie were best friends throughout their childhood. But unknown to Sadie, Sid has been secretly in love with her since her was 9 years old. Sid is determined to marry Sadie and with her working in Goldtree Sid expects his dreams to soon come true.
Sadie finds satisfaction in her duties as clerk for the Baxter sisters. When Asa Baxter offers Sadie the singing job it seems this is truly God's plan for Sadie. Sadie's music instantly endears her to the entire town. With two performances every week in the opera house, nightly practices, and singing in the church choir Sadie's life is very full.
But when Asa Baxter demands that Sadie make compromises with her singing Sadie refuses. But when he threatens to take away Sadie's singing job and Sid's delivery job Sadie is left with little choice but to comply – after all her family needs the money her job is bringing in. But when Thad starts courting Sadie, Asa demands that Sadie break it off immediately.
Is there a future for Sadie and Thad? Or will Sadie's compromises destroy their chance at a life together before it ever begins? What is the song of Sadie's heart? Can Sid, Sadie, and Thad trust God enough to listen to His leading?
I found Song of My Heart to be an enjoyable book. Perfect for a nice relaxing weekend read.
I received a free copy of this title from Bethany House Publishers for the purpose of this review. A positive review was not required.
Posted April 6, 2012
Sadie’s Stepdad is injured and can’t work and since Sadie is the oldest she is looking for work to help support her family. When her cousin writes her and tells her he found a job for her as well as the chance to sing at an opera house she is excited yet sad to leave her family. Sadie gets to work at a store with two old maids who she grows to love and she also gets to sing for there brother Asa in his underground Opera house. Sadie also finds herself smitten with the new Sheriff in town. But soon things start to change and Sadie finds herself making choices she is not proud of and jeopardizing everything she is working for. Will she make the right choices and find love along the way?
Thad has come to Goldtree to help the mayor find the bootlegging operation. Once he does that he hopes to become a minister. While he tries to find the person doing the bootlegging he gets to know the towns people and finds himself getting to know Sadie and her cousin Sid. As his feeling deepen for Sadie he becomes concerned she might be involved with the wrong doings. Will the truth allow them to find happy every after?
When I first heard about this book it sounded like it would be a fun book and I looked forward to reading it. Unfortunately I did not enjoy this book as I had hoped. The author is a good writer but the storyline did not hold my interest.
What I liked: I liked Sadie and felt bad for her that she had to leave her family in Indiana and move to Kansas but understood why she was doing it. I also liked the ladies that owned the store she worked for they where funny and added a lighter tone to the story. I liked the idea of the plot. There seemed like there was going to be some suspense and I was excited to see how it turned out.
What I did not like: I want to be careful here every book takes a lot of sweat and blood and I don’t want to bash this book. My biggest issue with this book was it was to predictable. The story is told by Sadie, Sid her cousin, Thad the sheriff and Asa the store owners brother. The problem with this for me was it pretty much gave away what was going to happen and made it less interesting to me. There was no who is the bad guy or even a climax scene that leaves you sitting on the edge of your reading seat. There was sort of a love triangle as well but it was only luke warm and did not add a lot to the story. I had to force myself to keep reading.
The story does have a good story line about Jesus forgiving our sins and not having to repay others sins. I would honestly probably not recommend this book to others but I will say read other reviews and make up your own minds you might really like it. It was just not a great book to me.
Posted March 26, 2012
This is a really sweet story, with some really enjoyable characters.
When Sadie Wagner's Dad is injured and unable to take care of his family, she moves for Indiana to Kansas. Her Cousin Sid had written that he was able to procure her work, at the mercantile, and singing [which Sadie is thrilled about].
Also moving to Goldtree, KS is Thad McKane, he has been recruited to be the Sheriff. The Mayor wants to kept it quiet, but he has fears of bootlegging going on.
I enjoyed the way Thad is drawn to the sweet girl. He has a rival in Sadie's cousin Sid, he wants her to think of him as something more than a Cousin, which he is, but not really. You will also the colorful characters of Melva and Shelva, and their not so nice brother Asa. There is a lot of Forgiveness to be sought from God, but they need to forgive themselves and others first. There are some twists and and turns in this quick read, hard to put down, story. Enjoy!
I received this book from Bethany House, and was not required to give a positive review.
Posted March 23, 2012
Sadie Wagner has moved to Goldtree for prospective employment. Her Papa, who was in a mining accident and unable to work, cannot support their family of eight. Sadie being the eldest of her siblings must take on the responsibility of being the sole bread winner for her family.
Thad McKane was called to Goldtree to serve as a lawman in the tiny town. But he doesn't plan on being sheriff for long. Nope. As soon as he figures out who is behind the illegal bootlegging scheme in Goldtree, Kansas he will use his wages to learn how to become a minister and clear his name of its sour reputation.
You don't come across to many stories that can suck you in, entirely mind and body, like Song of My Heart. Kim Vogel Sawyer can only be described as nothing less than talented. I was transported to Goldtree, Kansas, the year 1895. My ears ached from the double blast of screeching voices coming from the Baxter twins every time they spoke. I could literally smell the succulent aromas of comfort food wafting out from Cora's Diner, all the while feeling the grittiness of dust and dirt as it floated in the wind, behind wagons and pedestrians alike, throughout town.
Song of My Heart is a must read. It touches your soul. I give it a solid 9 out of 10 stars. One point shy of perfect because the beginning had a slow start. This is the second novel I've read from Mrs. Sawyer and neither were a disappointment.
Posted March 9, 2012
Sadie Wagner has taken a job away from her hometown and family in order to provide for her parents and siblings. Her stepfather was badly injured and is unable to work. An long time family friend recommends Sadie for a job as store clerk in Goldtree, Kansas. She not only has a job to be a store clerk but also the chance to sing in the town's Opera House. God had given Sadie an amazing talent for singing.
Thad McKane is also a new resident in town. But he does not plan on staying in town very long. He has been hired to be the Sheriff of Goldtree only long enough to flush out a bootlegging operation. His future plan is to solve this case earning enough money to pay for training to become a minister. It did not take long for Thad to notice Sadie. He is very attracted to her but is afraid she might be involved in the boot legging operation.
Sadie fears her new boss at the opera house because some of the things her boss has asked her to do could compromise her reputation . She just can not agree with her boss as to what her role at the opera house was about become.
I am sure Sadie moving away from home for the first time in her life and feeling betrayed by someone your family and everyone else had thought to be trust worthy must have been traumatic. When God gives us gifts, like all things in our lives they are to be used to glorify God. Only by the grace of God can we do this.
Another reviewer made a comment in one of her reviews that she wanted to scream at the characters in the book telling them what they should do. Well this is how I felt in this book I wanted to scream at Sadie wanting to protect her from making the wrong choices she was faced with so far from home.
I highly recommend this book.
I rate this book a 5 out of 5
I was given a free copy of this book for review by Bethany House. I was in no way compensated for this review. It is my own opinion.
Posted March 3, 2012
Sadie Wagner knows she must leave her beloved family to work and send money home to them. Her step-father is injured, and she is oldest. However, the added bonus of getting a job and being paid to sing – which she loves - in an “opera” house lessens the homesickness she feels. Another benefit is that a favorite cousin lives and works in Goldtree, Kansas too. However, her Cousin Sid’s feelings and the friendship/attraction she feels for the town sheriff, Thad, complicate her life in her new surroundings. Her three bosses add humor, care, deception, and threats to Sadie’s life. Sisters – Shelva and Melva Baxter provide care for Sadie with voices and opinions at top volume. Asa Baxter’s offer to have her sing is a blessing and a dream come true, but the requirements that she must meet to earn the money her family needs exceed the limits of her Christian family’s teaching.
I saw this book described as historical Christian fiction. The references to praying together as a family, to asking for guidance, and prayers of thanks added to the story. They fit and helped me to understand and like the characters. Still, I think Shelva, Melva, and Asa are my favorite characters.
Three and a half stars
Posted February 12, 2012
Kim Sawyer paints a picture of how a person’s desire to do right, carried to the extreme can send us in the wrong direction. Sadie Wagner wants to sing. And the singing gig gives her money to send home to help her family. How can using her God given talent turn out to be so wrong? Or is it?
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Posted November 4, 2012
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Posted January 26, 2012
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Posted March 21, 2012
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Posted May 4, 2012
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