Love by the Letter (Unexpected Brides): A Novella

Love by the Letter (Unexpected Brides): A Novella

by Melissa Jagears

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Love by the Letter (Unexpected Brides): A Novella by Melissa Jagears

2014 Carol Award Winner for Novella

Dex Stanton has never had much time for book learning. He's been too busy helping to provide for his family. Now that he's heading west, Dex is hoping to start a family of his own. However, his attempt to acquire a mail-order bride fails miserably when the lady writes back ridiculing his terrible spelling. Rachel Oliver may be the last person he wants to know what a dunce he is, but she's also the smartest woman in town--and it's clear he needs her help.

Rachel Oliver has lingered in town for three years secretly mooning over Dex Stanton, but now she's done. If the fool wants to write to a mail-order bride company, so be it. Once she begins giving Dex lessons, however, Rachel realizes she may not be prepared to give up just yet.

As their time together runs short, can two of the most stubborn people in town set aside their pride long enough to find love?

Love by the Letter is a companion novella to A Bride for Keeps, Melissa Jagears's full-length debut novel available fall 2013. Includes an extended sneak peek at A Bride for Keeps.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781441263346
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/01/2013
Series: Unexpected Brides Series
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 78
Sales rank: 21,849
File size: 639 KB

About the Author

Melissa Jagears, an ESL teacher by trade, is a stay-at-home mother on a tiny Kansas farm with a fixer-upper house. She's a member of ACFW and CROWN fiction marketing, and her passion is to help Christian believers mature in their faith and judge rightly. A Bride for Keeps is her first novel. Find her online at
Carol Award-winning author Melissa Jagears is a homeschooling mom who writes Christian historical romance into the wee hours of the night. She's the author of the Unexpected Brides series, the Teaville Moral Society series, and Love by the Letter, a free prequel ebook novella. You can learn more about Melissa, her books, and where she hangs out online at

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Love by the Letter (Unexpected Brides): A Novella 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 75 reviews.
NavyWave62 More than 1 year ago
I liked how the author made you feel the insecurities of Dex and his problems. I didn't like the rush ending, maybe if she included an epilogue of even 24 hrs., I'd be happier. The next book is almost $10.00 and I am not going to spend that much money, when I am not sure that book will leave you hanging. Granted the book is free and a novella., but I have read many novella's and wanted to read more by an author. Not this time. (ljb)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Although not normally a reader of this genre, I totally enjoyed Melissa Jagears’ Love By The Letter. The author brought this interesting historical era and setting to life with humorous characters and a captivating plot. Dex, who suffers from dyslexia, is both intimidated and enthralled by Rachel, the town’s pretty little smart girl. But she’s out of his league, so he resorts to advertising for a mail order bride to accompany him to a raw homestead in the opening of western Kansas. But he makes the mistake of writing his own letters… He decides to receive tutoring from his secret true love whose commitment to attending college in Tennessee, should protect his heart from unrealistic expectations—and his reputation from ridicule. The believable plot twists and turns keeps you cheering the hero and heroine on and turning the pages.  I enjoyed the characters, the sibling rivalries between Rachel and her sister, and the banter between Dex and his brother and bachelor friends. The author’s dry sense of humor and spiritual insight made Love By The Letter a fun evening read. I’m looking forward to more from Melissa Jagears. 
These-Pretty-Words More than 1 year ago
Wonderful historical piece! I wrote in my review of A Bride for Keeps that “meddling Rachel and faithful Dex…are highly entertaining and almost steal the show.” When I learned there was a companion piece highlighting Rachel and Dex as a couple, I jumped for it. My initial thoughts on these two were correct – they totally steal the show. Love By The Letter introduces us to the characters of Rachel and Dex before the time period of A Bride for Keeps. Bachelor Dex is heading out to start a new life for himself with others from town. He’s kind and hard-working but has very little education which makes reading and writing difficult for him. If he wants to get the attention of a mail-order bride, he knows he needs help with his letter writing. That’s where Rachel comes in. Smart, studious and crushing hard on our Dex, she’s everything he could want and nothing he feels he deserves. They’ve basically avoided each other for years, both interested in the other but neither ready to risk the possible embarrassment of showing interest. But when Dex shows up at Rachel’s door asking her to help him improve his reading, these two kids start one of the most awkward and bumbling friendships/unknown-courtships I’ve ever read. The concept of God opening doors was strong in this piece. Rachel even went searching through the Bible to find verses having to do with doors and ended up more confused than ever. The message is clear – God will open the doors but you need to find the courage to walk through them. Both Rachel and Dex brought this up multiple times throughout the piece and kept that message at the forefront of their thoughts. Beautifully done! I give Love By The Letter five stars. I adore this novella. Melissa’s writing style shines in this format, and the characters practically jump right off the page. Gorgeous and sweet, Love By The Letter will keep you smiling from the very first page. I will be looking out for the next book in this series based on this novella alone.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love this book. Keep the good work up
I_like_clean_reads More than 1 year ago
Although I read the entire novella, the sophomoric writing and the author's lack of imagination to keep me interested made it difficult at best. The illiterate farmer in love with the overly-educated (for her time and place) lady. Really imaginative story here....
Fiction_FanaticEP More than 1 year ago
This book is a prequel novella to Bride For Keeps - Unexpected Brides. As such, it was meant to introduce you to characters that are featured in the following book. Dex and Rachel fight through their insecurities to find out that they both may want the same thing. It was an enjoyable and quick read and made me want to get the next book. I do wish there was a little bit more to it, but, then, it wouldn't be a novella.
Marilyn65 More than 1 year ago
Worthwhile reding.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pretty obvious how it would end. Reading down hill.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really like the principle characters, Rachel and Dex. Their conflict was believeable.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
the preview of the next in the series left me wanting to read the entire new book right now!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Short and sweet, I like the time period.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I realy like your book alot l like to git book 2 to find out what happens in the story i cant wair ;)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read just the novella & not the sneak peek of this author's debut book at the end. It took a while to get through the plot of the story. Kind of slow going. Wouldn't read another book by this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cute short story . L.M.A.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really short. Prequal, no ending. Was okay. AD
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A little silly.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderful read!
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TexasladySH More than 1 year ago
A sweet love story!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago