A Reluctant Belle (Daughtry House Book #2)

A Reluctant Belle (Daughtry House Book #2)

by Beth White

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Impoverished Southern belle Joelle Daughtry has a secret. By day she has been helping her sisters in their quest to turn the run-down family plantation into a resort hotel after the close of the Civil War. But by night and under a male pseudonym, she has been penning articles for the local paper in support of the construction of a Negro school. With the Mississippi arm of the Ku Klux Klan gaining power and prestige, Joelle knows she is playing a dangerous game.

When childhood enemy and current investor in the Daughtry house renovation Schuyler Beaumont takes over his assassinated father's candidacy for state office, Joelle finds that in order to protect her family and her home, she and Schuyler will have to put aside their longstanding personal conflict and develop a united public front. The trouble is, what do you do when animosity becomes respect--and even love--if you're already engaged to someone else?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781493417704
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/04/2019
Series: Daughtry House , #2
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 84,575
File size: 7 MB

About the Author

Beth White's day job is teaching music at an inner-city high school in historic Mobile, Alabama. A native Mississippian, she writes historical romance with a Southern drawl and is the author of The Pelican Bride, The Creole Princess, The Magnolia Duchess, and A Rebel Heart. Her novels have won the American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award, the RT Book Club Reviewers' Choice Award, and the Inspirational Reader's Choice Award. Learn more at www.bethwhite.net.

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A Reluctant Belle 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 23 reviews.
Becky5 More than 1 year ago
Beth White produces vivid descriptions of anarchy in post-Civil War times in The Reluctant Belle, Daughtry House #2. Reconstruction was a very slow, painful process. Some championed it, some quietly supported it, and some outright spoke against it. Others secretly opposed it with an infectious hatred that developed into the KKK. This terror might start in an area slowly, like a glowing ember, then quite quickly fan into a ferocious, deadly flame that was meant to undo the liberation of the slaves. Author White brings the era to exciting, fearful life for a heart-stopping, engaging read. So many themes presented here. We learn that God sees us all as we are. We see, if we choose, comparisons for racial issues in our own times. I really was impressed by how God used each character, especially the main characters, despite their flaws, using the talents He HAD given them. I saw more than a historical romance. I saw an example of what I want to be for my husband-what Joelle represents to Schuyler. Am I a refuge for my husband, anchoring him the way Joelle anchors Schuyler? Great quotes, true for today. “ If you admitted that you loved, you put yourself in danger of rejection.” “The only way they got through that year had been laying their bruised souls at the feet of Jesus.” “People who had a lot to lose, he’d noticed, took more time to pray. They relied on each other, trusted one another, became vulnerable as brothers and sisters.” The author’s notes at the end are interesting and essential for history buffs. Grab this one for yourself and start following Beth White. This book can stand alone, but I enjoyed it, even more, knowing the background of book one. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. This in no way affects my opinions which I am for which I am solely responsible.
Pattistep More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this story set in the post Civil war period. If you haven’t read the first book in the series, I’d suggest you do that before you read this one. Although you can read this book on its own and still understand what’s happening, you’ll be more in touch with the characters as you read this one. Because of the subject matter of this book, the author could have made some of this more “sensational” or used crude language, and I appreciated her restraint. She gave us an interesting, even at time romantic, storyline that addressed those problems in a compassionate way. I loved the characters and hope there’s another book to come after this one. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
swissgranny More than 1 year ago
With a setting in post-Civil War Mississippi and a cast of colorful, engaging characters, A Reluctant Belle by Beth White drew me in from the first and kept me turning the pages. Independent, feisty, and maybe a bit quirky, Joelle Daughtry tickled my funny bone and made me laugh out loud. Known for her prodigious vocabulary and outspoken ways, she also had a propensity for landing into ridiculous and sometimes dangerous situations. I was delighted by the humor in this book. It helped to lighten the more somber and sometimes disturbing events that occurred and added to my enjoyment of the story. “We know you went to a fancy boarding school, Joelle, but can you try not to talk as if you swallowed a dictionary?” Whenever Joelle and Schuyler Beaumont, the reformed hero of the story, met, sparks of one kind or another flew, and their witty, and sometimes sarcastic banter kept me chuckling. Schuyler had a way of riling Joelle just by showing up, and he used it to his advantage. I enjoyed seeing their relationship mature and change throughout the story. Beth White’s writing is easy to read and her careful historical research is apparent. I enjoyed learning more about this interesting slice of history and some of the adjustments both the North and the South had to make after the Civil War. With intrigue, suspense, lots of history, humor, romance, and threads of redemption, courage, and faith, this story has something for everyone. This is the second in the Daughtry House series and can stand alone, but reading A Rebel Heart, the first in the series, will help with understanding some of the background a little better. Although I’ve enjoyed White’s other stories, I feel like this is her best book to date, and I’m looking forward to the next installment in the Daughtry House series. I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from the publisher Revell. All opinions are my own.
Deana0326 More than 1 year ago
I know you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover, but in this case I absolutely did. The cover grabbed my attention and without reading the back cover I was already sold on the book. Joelle and her sisters are taking on a big endeavor by opening their home as a hotel. Just after the war has ended may not be the best time, but Joelle is a determined woman. She is one fierce woman who doesn’t back down from anything. There are no quitters in the family so it has to be prosperous. What I found intriguing was her articles that she was writing about the KKK. Does she know how dangerous this is? What if someone finds out? I love how Joelle wants the sane treatment for everyone and will step on toes as she moves forward with her articles that can cause hatred and danger. I admire her for sticking up for what she believe in. The post Civil War era was at times confusing to me but the author has done her homework. She helps readers understand what is going on and brings her characters to life. I’m on the fence with Schuyler as he has seen both sides of freeing slaves. Has his heart changed? The author does a great job of showing how each character is struggling with their faith and learning to trust each other and Him. I learned a lot of historical facts while reading this book. There were a few things I didn’t know about which helped me understand the struggle of slaves being truly free. There is a very shocking murder that takes place in story that will affect several characters. Will hearts be soften to the plight of the people who want to be treated as equals? Can Joelle and Schuyler begin to trust each other? Be sure to catch their banter and have a few laughs as they try to keep their pride in check. The story is a wonderful display of treating others as you would like to be treated. There is danger along the way, but their faith will help them make the right choices, I received a copy of this book from Librarything’s Early Readers Review group. The review is my own opinion.
CarolJo More than 1 year ago
History! Reconstruction Era! Murder! Love! Joelle is a strong female protagonist who works hard to help support her family and believes in educating blacks so they can make intelligent decisions and care for their families! Male protagonist wealthy Schuyler has wasted his life, attending college and having a great time being the life of the party! When Schuyler's father is murdered, he begins to look at life differently. You will find some surprising men in the Ku Klux Klan! Who can be trusted? A Reluctant Belle is the second book in the Daughtry House series but can be read as a stand alone. You will enjoy it more if you read the series. I recommend this southern historical book to others! I received my copy of A Reluctant Belle from the author. This is my honest opinion.
Bookworm_Debbie More than 1 year ago
This is an incredible historical romance. I think that all of the central characters are extremely well developed. Joelle has to be my favorite with all of her insecurities and doubts. I can relate to her as far as how many of them she has. Yet she continues to strive to help other people and treat them fairly. Schuyler Beaumont finds himself having to grow up suddenly and face the realities of what life is truly like. Along with that he does a fair amount of kicking himself for not having been acting in a more adult manner for so long. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing how Joelle and Schuyler interact with each other. They suddenly find themselves seeing each other as their adult selves not the children that grew up as friends/foes. The plot of the story is very heavy in that it deals with the middle portion of the Reconstruction Era, five years after Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox. The presentation of the racial atmosphere of the time is very well done. I do appreciate the fact that the author chose not to use all of the very harsh language that would have been prevalent at the time. It made it a little easier for me to read. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. I was not required to give a positive review. All of the opinions expressed are my own. Disclaimer: *Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.*
eLynda More than 1 year ago
In the second book in The Daughtry House Series, Beth White returns readers to a family who has endured much heartbreak, but has also found joy. In a difficult place and time, we continue to explore life and love while culture shifts uncomfortably and painfully for many, even as healing begins. I really like Joelle’s character; as the middle sister, she feels often overlooked, but she is smart and opinionated. Her volatile relationship with Schuyler from their childhood only heightens as they mature, and it makes for a romance throwing off sparks every time they occupy the same page. Schuyler himself is a character undergoing dramatic change after his father’s death. A gentleman in more than just name or position, I enjoyed reading about a man with integrity who is coming to terms with a new reality in difficult situations. The whole culture of the south at this time is like another world to me, and the author took the time to help me understand the politics and racial tensions without it seeming like I was being talked down to or that it was a history lesson. Another aspect I appreciated in the writing is that I never felt like she was trying to shock me with graphic passages or language that I have no desire to read in the interests of being “more realistic.” White masterfully immerses the reader in the post-Civil War culture, with the varied people and opinions brought to life with complexity and nuance. There are no perfect answers, rather flawed characters and a compelling story that kept me riveted. I highly recommend it for those with an interest in the South, who enjoy historical romance, or who like strong, yet feminine, heroines. I received a review copy of this book from the author and the publisher but was under no obligation to post a positive review. The opinions expressed are both honest and my own.
vics49548 More than 1 year ago
Author Beth White did a fine job of bringing her characters to life. Joelle is not the typical southern belle. I enjoyed her sassiness and willingness to do whatever she needed. And Schuyler was brave and willing to fight for what’s right. The play between these two was quite entertaining at times. This is a difficult time in history and White seems to have researched it well. She didn’t hide the ugly facts but handled it with grace. If you enjoy historical fiction with clean romance then you’ll enjoy A Reluctant Belle. I received a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to leave a review.
RachsRamblings More than 1 year ago
A terrific novel from this Author! It had just the right mixture of suspense, wit, humor, romance, and faith to produce an entertaining read that was at times incredibly funny and at others infuriating and tense. Set during the very volatile time after the Civil War, the historical setting is incredibly well done and creates the suspenseful backdrop and circumstances surrounding a love triangle story where one angle clearly wasn’t IN the triangle. Historical fiction is probably my favorite genre ( though some days I might tell you it’s suspense) , and the historical backdrop is done so well.. It’s a hard to put down a novel with all the wonderful necessary threads needed to create a good read. This is definitely a book for the keeper shelf. If you enjoy historical fiction, go grab a copy. It’s astory that begs to be read. I received this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
FHlady More than 1 year ago
The Civil War has ended and Reconstruction has taken over the south along with the burgeoning Ku Klux Klan. The Daughtry sisters are in the midst of preparations for the opening of their antebellum home as a resort hotel. Selah, the oldest sister, is on her honeymoon while Joelle the middle sister is busy by day with preparations for the hotel and teaching her black freedmen while by night she is filled with writing for the local newspaper under her pseudonym. Her childhood friend, Schuyler, is supporting the school and hotel financially. But they both soon find themselves caught in the middle of rabid anti-slavery goings-on when Schuyler's moderate, politically active father is assassinated. Joelle's fiery spirit kept this book moving from start to finish. She spoke her mind and wrote her thoughts with her main focus on the Blacks being treated as human beings equal under the eyes of God to anyone else. Although often her nemesis, Schuyler soon realized that the friendship he felt went deeper than he ever believed; and no matter what, he would always be there for Joelle. Watching their slow growing romance develop was a treat. I enjoyed seeing the way Schuyler, grew and matured as he invested himself in what really mattered. Both Joelle and Schuyler stood for what mattered and didn't think about the cost. I loved their back-and-forth banter. The secondary characters also added depth to the entire story from the sweetness and strength of Nathan to the lily-livered preacher, Liam. The plot was filled with twists and turns along with adventure, danger, intrigue, and sweet romance. The faith element was well threaded through the story without ever sounding preachy and yet showing the role it played in both Joelle and Schuyler's lives as well as the Black freed men and women. I look forward to reading the final story of the Daughtry sisters which will focus on the youngest sister, Aurora.
Virginiaw More than 1 year ago
Make sure to read book one in the series before you read this one so that you understand who all the characters are in this story. I loved the characters throughout this series. I can’t wait to read the next book in the series. I keep needing to know more and more about each of these sisters and cousins. This story helps you learn a bit about the reconstruction that occurred after the end of the Civil War. I received a copy of this book from Revell for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
KayleesKindofWrites More than 1 year ago
My Review: Genre: Historical, Christian fiction, Civil War, and some romance. Rating: 4 and 1/2 stars. My Recommendation: 16 up. Warnings below. My Favorite Character/s: Schuyler was an interesting guy. I enjoyed getting to read his point of view which surprised me since I’ve read a few Civil War books that I ended care for the male point of view. He was somewhat annoying at first but as the book went on I ended up loving how he and Joelle were friends or rather enemies I suppose. My Verse for Schuyler is Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. (King James Version.) My Thoughts: I was running so short on time this review, normally when that happens I skim the book but I couldn’t . . . The book was too good! I loved almost all of it except for some things that were mentioned by the bad guys and people who disagreed with the laws that were put in place after the Civil War. Warnings: Insults, a man gets drunk and mentions of drunkenness, racist remarks from bad guys, a two murders and mentions of how the victims were murdered. I received an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review and am truly happy to provide it. All the thoughts are my own.
ARS8 More than 1 year ago
From book one I have been rooting for Joelle, the second sister, and her childhood friend/enemy Schuyler. When we get to see what happened all those years ago, something Joelle made sure they never mentioned you get quite a taste of why their relationship is where it is at. The push and pull of their chemistry and animosity with each other was amusing to watch as they battled with their words. Not only do we have this romance, but Schuyler has had a devastating blow and now he may be in danger. In the meantime, Joelle has her own secret agendas that she must keep secret not only so she does not bring bad press to her family’s new hotel but it most likely could put her in danger as well. Both of them are very stubborn, think their way is right, and all the while I am thinking just kiss her already. This is another enjoyable book by author White. Her stories tend to stick with me and have me thinking about them long after I have closed the book. I am looking forward to book three. I received a copy of this novel from the publisher. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
Reluctant Belle is the second installment from Beth White’s fabulous series, Daughtry House. I loved the first book, A Rebel Heart, and this one does not disappoint. I enjoyed Joelle’s story, especially when she was with Schuyler. They were fun together with their constant bickering. I give Reluctant Belle a well deserved five plus stars. I can not wait to read the third book in the Daughtry House series. I highly recommend this one to readers who enjoy clean, inspirational historical fiction. Great read! I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.
MaryAnn Benson More than 1 year ago
Did you ever have a friend who was clearly headed into a mismatched marriage, but you (and everyone else) could see that the better match was right in front of her? Joelle is my new friend. As the middle sister in the Daughtry House series, she is coming to age in Tupelo, Mississippi, during the changing times following the Civil War. Her aspirations of teaching former slaves and of having her writings published bring danger to herself, her loved ones, and her community. Beth White balances historical facts with sensitivity, humor, and romance.
SBMC More than 1 year ago
“Cracking you open is like getting the sweets out of a pecan. It’s a lot of work, but the result is pretty tasty.” Ah, the second book in The Daughtry House series picks up right after where the first one left off. A Reluctant Belle continues with Joelle, the middle Daughtry sister, and her long-time frenemy Schuyler during the middle of the Reconstruction Era as the poor town of Tupelo, Mississippi struggles to find its footing in the midst of violent racism. With her easy-to-read and descriptive writing style, multi-faceted characters, and a finely-honed theme of faith, Beth White vividly paints life in the 1870s Deep South. Joelle is an independent, intelligent, compassionate, passionate introvert who spends her days writing, under a pseudonym, articles supporting the education of freedmen so that she can buy the supplies to educate those freedmen who work in the family’s renovated hotel. She’s socially awkward and completely oblivious, as well as obtusely blunt, but has a heart of gold and is fiercely loyal to her family and friends. Schuyler is the happy-go-lucky youngest son of a rail tycoon who gets embroiled in the heat of southern politics and racism when his father is assassinated during his gubernatorial campaign. The death of his beloved father helps Schuyler turn his life and attitude around to better mankind with the gift of speech and money that he has. The spark and electric banter between Joelle and Schuyler are so incredibly fun and it’s nice to have Selah and Levi from the first book return to add more layers to the plot. There is a delightful and surprisingly solid suspense aspect to the plot which I thoroughly enjoyed. If you love historical romance, this series by Beth White is not to be missed. I received the book from Baker Publishing House via Interviews and Reviews book review program and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All comments and opinions are solely my own.
Nanna51 More than 1 year ago
Although I missed the story of the first Daughtry sister, I did not feel that I absolutely had to go back and read it since the author does a masterful job of filling in the gaps for the reader. This historical fiction is set during the Reconstruction Era, when the south is still reeling from having lost the war and all of the changes that this means to their lifestyles. The author does a wonderful job of portraying such explosive topics as the rights of the freedmen to be educated and to vote. Joelle Daughtry, the main character in this second book in the series, is a writer who pens articles about the inhumane treatment of others, writing under a pen name and trying to keep her identity secret. Through a series of unfortunate events, Joelle finds herself engaged to Reverend Gil Reece, a man of noble character but not very interesting. She is helping her sisters to set up the old homestead as a bed and breakfast, having the financial backing of Schuyler Beaumont, a young man who has to grow up quickly when his father is killed. Joelle and Schuyler feel an attraction to each other, but as childhood nemeses, they don’t act on their attraction, but rather choose to pretend that it does not exist. The story of Joelle is fascinating and told with what seems to be total historical accuracy. I would highly recommend this book to those who enjoy historical fiction. I gave it four stars because I was a little lost at the beginning, having not read the first book in the series. Disclaimer Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255, “Guides Concerning the Use of Testimonials and Endorsements in Advertising.”
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Don't you love the name Joelle? This main character's bookwormish, introverted tendencies, along with her love for writing and sassy comebacks make her a woman after my own heart in many ways! Beth White's writing style is energetic and vivid, and her attention to historical detail was excellent! I really enjoyed this aspect of the book. I appreciated how she focused on the lesser known education of former slaves just after the Civil War, and the brutal travesties of the Ku Klux Klan. But the story fell short for me. I had to force myself to finish it because the plot just didn't hold my interest, and Joelle and Schuyler disappointed me as a rather immature, frustrating couple. Also, their love story just didn't feel very edifying or grounded on much else than sexual attraction. I'd like to give some of Beth White's other books a chance one day! But for me personally, this one wasn't that enjoyable
MaureenST More than 1 year ago
I loved being back with the Daughtry sisters, and being reunited with old friends. This being the second book in the series the author does a wonderful job of bringing you up to date, and a bit about what happened in the previous read. The Inn is about ready for guests, and times and tensions are heightened, and evil rears its ugly head. This is a rebuilding time after the Civil War, but there are those that really don’t want change and will do all they can to ensure that what they want continues. A bit of romance, and this is Joelle’s story, and we hope she makes the right decisions with two men of interest in her life. A wonderful historical read that you don’t want to miss, and there is another sister, so yes, there is another book in this series coming! I received this book through the Publisher Revell, and was not required to give a positive review.
PaulaShreckhise More than 1 year ago
A Reluctant Belle by Beth White is the second story in The Daughtry house series. It is best if you start with A Rebel Heart, Selah’s story, for a full experience and background information. A Reluctant Belle is about middle daughter, Joelle. The third will be A Reckless Love, Aurora’s story. The Daughtry sisters have come through the Civil War but have lost their father. In order to provide for themselves, they are making their family mansion into a resort hotel in the midst of Reconstruction. In order to realize this enterprise, they have accepted the financial backing of distant relative and sometime enemy Schuyler Beaumont. He is from wealth and influence. Schuyler is a colorful character who delights in goading Joelle into arguments just so see her reactions. They may have more in common than they realize. Schuyler muses: “ The women, of course, had always been family— if, at times, of a distant and somewhat contentious variety, in fact, to his surprise, he realized that Daughtry House felt more like home than Beaumont House in Mobile. He might not own it outright, but he’d invested much more than his finances here. He suspected that his heart and purpose in life might actually be found in the soul of this place.” Joelle Daughtry is a progressive thinker. She feels God prompting her to speak up for the underdog. She writes articles under a false name advocating for education for the freed slaves so they can vote in an informed manner and make their way in commerce intelligently. While they each have their secrets to keep, Schuyler and Joelle are learning who they can trust and we see them maturing in their views and purpose in life. Since the story is set in the Reconstruction period, Ms. White has dealt with the many injustices that followed the Civil War. Among them are Negro voting rights and education, simmering racial tension and the beginning of the KKK. She handles it with realism and tact. There is plenty of intrigue and excitement as the characters navigate the turbulent times. The Southern humor and witty banter make this novel enjoyable as well as interesting and informative. I recommend this book for those who like Civil War fiction with a clear faith thread and characters who don’t back down from their convictions. *I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher on behalf of the author. I was not obligated to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.*
connywithay More than 1 year ago
“What do you want from me? We can’t be confidants any ore. We can’t even be—argument mates anymore,” Joelle is told in Beth White’s novel, Reluctant Belle. ~ What ~ The second in the Daughtry House series, this three-hundred-and-sixty-eight-page paperback targets those interested in a historical romance set in the South during the middle of the Reconstruction Era. With no profanity, topics of abuse, torture, and murder may not be appropriate for immature readers. The ending includes a note to the reader, an excerpt of another novel, acknowledgments, and the author’s biography with advertisements. In this tale set in 1870 in Mississippi, twenty-two-year-old Joelle Daughtry has her hands full being betrothed to the local pastor while she helps run a resort hotel and writes under a male pseudonym newspaper articles that promote helping former slaves. However, knowing she rushed into accepting her marriage proposal due to the ongoing frustration with Schuyler Beaumont, a hotel investor she has known since childhood, their love/hate relationship has to be put on the back burner to uncover who murdered his father. ~ Why ~ I enjoy novels where I learn about America’s history, especially when slavery was abolished. I appreciated the details of the Southern culture. The story focuses on how freedom started spread among slaves and lines were drawn between the Lincolnites, Union League, and Ku Klux Klan. The bantering between the two protagonists was charming and engaging at times. ~ Why Not ~ Those who do not like stories of the persecution of freed slaves may pass on this book. Others may wish some of the characters were not stereotypical and the romance predictable. I found Joelle to be a bit too flawless as a teacher, journalist, and hotel manager who seemed wishy-washy when it came to love. ~ Wish ~ Since this is a part of a series and I did not read the first book, I wish there were a list of characters since there is a plethora of people mentioned. I prefer all pronouns of God capitalized for reverence. ~ Want ~ If you like a historical novel of the South’s conflict over race and politics, this is a quick and cozy read of romance that includes solving a murder. Thanks to Revell for this complimentary book that I am under no obligation to review.
Christianfictionandmore More than 1 year ago
A Reluctant Belle picks up right where A Rebel Heart left off. While those who read the first book in the Daughtry House series will have some insight into the characters that others will not, A Reluctant Belle will work as a stand-alone read. This second book is set in the Reconstruction period in Mississippi and Alabama, and deals with atrocities that were not uncommon in that time and place. White examines the hearts on both sides of the continuing social conflict as well as personal events that shaped them. Sometimes hardships bring out the best in folks, and sometimes the worst. White also draws attention to the difference between authentic faith and self-serving religion, and the difference between those who seek to be transformed by the renewing of their minds, who want to have the mind of Christ, and those who seek to create God in their own image. Embedded within weighty themes, White writes in suspense and romance that will hold tight to the reader's interest. This story focuses on the middle Daughtry sister, Joelle, a shy but headstrong young woman, one who knows her own mind and does not see the necessity of conforming to the demands of society. One who can thoughtfully and logically put pen to paper with great success, but one who often acts on impulse. While a bit older than a typical unwed southern belle, Joelle now has two suitors, one whom she recognizes as such, the other only recognized by those closest to her, but only one to whom she is well suited and who is well suited for her. I highly recommend A Reluctant Belle, and am grateful to have received a copy from Revell via NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion. I was under no obligation to provide a positive review and received no monetary compensation.
TCJRogers More than 1 year ago
A Reluctant Belle is an extremely well-written story about Joelle Daughtry, a young lady living in the Deep South just after the Civil War who yearns to help educate the recently freed slaves. Obviously, there is opposition to this cause, and she and Schuyler, her childhood friend/enemy who she can’t stand and also can’t stand to be without, are caught in the middle of a dangerous situation. It took me a few chapters to really get into the story and connect with it, but once I did, I couldn’t put it down. The characters were so engaging. I love the relationship between Joelle and Schuyler — how they would push away from each other but then always pull back together, not really realizing the love they had for each other until they thought they might loose it forever. One of the most compelling aspects of the story is knowing that the danger was real — that post-Civil War life was dangerous, for freedmen and for those who would take up their cause. Overall, I thought this was an excellent book. I hadn’t read anything by Beth White prior to this book, but now I am definitely going to check out her other books. I highly recommend this one to anyone who likes historical romantic Christian fiction. *My thanks to the publisher for the Early Reviewer’s copy. I was not obligated to give a positive a review, and all opinions expressed are my own.*