To Capture Her Heart: A Novel

To Capture Her Heart: A Novel

by Rebecca DeMarino


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It is 1653 and Heather Flower, a princess of the Montauk tribe, is enjoying her wedding feast when her groom is killed and she is kidnapped by a rival tribe and held for ransom. Though her ransom is paid by an Englishman, she is nonetheless left to die in a Connecticut forest—until she finds herself rescued by handsome Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren. Torn between her affection for Dirk and her long friendship with family friend Benjamin Horton, Heather Flower must make a difficult choice—stay true to her friend or follow her heart.

Exploring a unique slice of history, Rebecca DeMarino transports readers to the wild land that would eventually become Long Island, New York. Her attention to detail and her captivating storytelling bring the New World to vivid life.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780800722197
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/07/2015
Series: Southold Chronicles Series , #2
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Rebecca DeMarino is a historical romance author and lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, The Southold Historical Society, and the New England Historic Genealogical Society. Rebecca is the author of A Place in His Heart, To Capture Her Heart, and To Follow Her Heart, all part of The Southold Chronicles series. Learn more at

Read an Excerpt

To Capture Her Heart

A Novel

By Rebecca DeMarino


Copyright © 2015 Rebecca DeMarino
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-8007-2219-7


June 21, 1653

The thunder of a thousand hooves pounded in her ears and she buried her head beneath her tethered hands. She muffled the noise with her arms pressed against her ears. Heather Flower sat very still. She remembered the childhood game peekaboo. She'd believed if she could not see her mother, her mother could not see her.

But this was not a game. Her legs, bound at the ankles, were drawn up under her skirt, and her knees trembled as she lowered her covered head till her forehead touched them. A pool of quiet tears soaked the soft, beaded deerskin.

Sudden silence, save for the occasional snort from the winded horses, or the soft swish of their tails, brought intense fear. Her body shook as she tried to draw herself into the smallest mound possible. The restraints dug into her slender wrists, but her lips were sealed together in a thin line and not a cry escaped.

The footfalls approaching were not the tread of her Indian captors. A leather-clad hand lifted her chin, and her heart quaked in her chest. Her throat constricted until it ached as she gathered her courage and lifted her eyes.

"Hallo! You are Heather Flower, the daughter of the Great Sachem, Wyandanch?"

His posture bore no malice but was instead gentle, kind. She dared to hope he would not harm her.

Her chin quivered in the cup of his glove, her moist lashes fluttered, but her voice was strong. "I am Quashawam, the Heather Flower of Montauk." She studied his face and saw kindness.

"We were sent from Lion Gardiner and his friend John Smith to find you and take you to your father, who waits for you." His voice was deep like the sound of the ocean in a conch shell, smooth and comforting. He removed his gloves and drew his knife. With a quick cut he released her ankles. He grasped her arms and lifted her to her feet.

Her legs found no bearing, and he steadied her before taking her hands in his to cut the last tether.

"Thank you, my paleface brother." She looked into eyes the color of the crystal clear bay on a warm summer afternoon.

"Take some water to drink, and when you have had your fill, I have some biscuits and dried berries for you. When did they last give you food?"

"They left me here for many days. I do not remember how many. They might come again soon. We must go. I fear the mean brothers of Connecticut." His face blurred in front of her as she dropped into his arms. The young white brave helped her back to the ground and pressed a cup of water to her lips. She drank deeply, then pushed the cup away. "Ooneewey. Thank you."

She knew the accent of his speech. "You are Dutch? What is your name? Why would the Englishman Gardiner send you?"

"I am Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren, from Fort Amsterdam. I serve a different army, but when Gardiner needed men, I asked to be permitted to head the party. These men are English from the Southold Militia, led by Lieutenant Edward Biggs. They are under my command on this mission. We Dutch have our own reasons to hate the fierce Narragansett. And I know their territory intimately."

He dug into his knapsack and o$ered a biscuit. "You may call me Dirk. Here, eat this before we travel. You need strength."

A thicket of bayberry shrubs directly behind her rustled and she startled, her reply frozen in her throat. A young cottontail scrambled from beneath. Relief rushed through her veins, quickly replaced by a wave of embarrassment. It did not go unnoticed by this man Dirk.

He squatted close beside her and pressed the biscuit in her hand. "Amazing what noise a small creature can make, ja? You are safe now. Take this."

She chewed as she stared at the rescue party, now dismounting and rummaging in their own knapsacks for food. She counted twenty-five men. "I heard the running of many hooves—I thought hundreds of horses, thousands of hooves."

"I'm not sure there are that many horses on Long Island." His clear blue eyes penetrated hers. "Hoe gaat het? How are you? How were you treated?"

She drew a deep draught of warm air, scented with the bayberry and old pine needles, and calm engulfed her. "They were happy to have the daughter of Wyandanch. They taunted me with thoughts of what my father must endure. And though they did not hurt me with arrows or knives, they cut to my heart with their words. When they received the wampum sent by my father and the paleface Gardiner, they told me they were releasing me, but then left me here to die. Or worse, to fear they would return with their mean ways."

Dirk stood and held out a strong hand. She held tight as he pulled her up and watched as he brought his horse, the color of tanned buckskin with a sooty black mane and tail, to her side. She held out her hand and stroked the horse's muzzle. "She has a name?"

"Ja, her name is Button. Miss Button I call her."

Heather Flower nodded.

"I can protect you best if you ride in front," he said simply as he lifted her in one swoop onto pommel of the saddle.

The English lieutenant gave the search party the command to mount their horses and they split to ride fore and aft of the Dutch lieutenant. The long ride around the North Sea began.

* * *

The woman captivated Dirk as he guided his horse up a wide deer trail. The Montaukett were a tall, strong people, and she was almost his equal in height. She held herself in a majestic manner that bespoke of the royalty she was born into. Her eyes were fiery like black opals, and her mouth pouty and red like a blossom. Her skin was a creamy copper, and her hair ebony with the sheen of bear grease. Tangles and snarls from weeks without a comb made him want to reach out and smooth her tresses. He made a mental note to give her his military issue comb when they made camp.

He was drawn to her, there was no denying, and he longed to be her hero, to protect her. That he would do, but her heart was tender. Ninigret, the fierce sachem of the Narragansett and enemy of the Long Island natives, had killed her groom on their wedding day. His warriors forced her to watch and then kidnapped her and thirteen other Montaukett women. Dirk would protect her, yes, but that meant to protect her heart as well. He'd have to guard his own to do that.

He urged his steed down a steep embankment toward the bay and kept the reins in, guarding Heather Flower like he would a flickering flame on a windy day. "We will ride west along the bay until we can cross the East River at Manhattan over to Brooklyn. It's a hard seven-day ride to Montauk in good circumstances. You must tell me when you need to rest or when you are hungry. I want you to be strong."

She stared straight ahead, head held high. He knew he would not hear a complaint from her, not even a whimper. It was the way of her people.

Hours passed and the sun became a blazing ball in the west, low on the horizon. Fort Saybrook loomed on the hill and Dirk passed word to the front that Captain Mason expected them. As they rode past the old burned-out portion of the fort, he found it odd to be coming here, a Dutch fort now under English control, and he, surrounded by Englishmen. But there were issues in this wilderness that brought them together on some fronts.

As they entered the palisades, a small contingent of men greeted them, taking their horses to the livery and directing them to headquarters.

Captain Mason stood up from behind his desk and came around to shake Dirk's hand, but his eyes were on Heather Flower. She remained in the open doorway, and with her high cheekbones, large eyes, and lips like Leonardo's Mona Lisa, Dirk was certain the captain was as enchanted as he was. "Sir, I present Heather Flower, daughter of the Grand Sachem Wyandanch of Montauk."

Mason cleared his throat. "We have much regard for your father. It is a privilege to assist Captain Gardiner in your return. You shall sleep here tonight and on the morrow Lieutenant Van Buren shall escort you home. Now in the meantime, you need a hot meal." He took her arm and led her out.

A hearty meal of corn mush and biscuits with a slather of butter was served, and Dirk watched with pleasure as Heather Flower eagerly ate a full portion. The contented but weary party threw their bedrolls down for the night. He spread hers a bit further from the men.

"You are safe here. Men guard the gates and fence line at all hours." He settled himself atop his own bedding, tucking his musket close to his side. The ground was hard and the night alive with cricket chirps. Somewhere an owl hooted. He propped his hands beneath his head and stared at the heavens.

The night was warm and the ink sky a dance of thousands of winking stars. An astral display fell as if the sky had parted. Some Indians believed it to be a sign of travel heroes and he glanced over to the still form of Heather Flower and hoped she'd seen it.

He asked God for travel mercies as sleep claimed him.

* * *

Heather Flower was awake before the sun rose. The crescent moon had set hours ago, but the crisp stars still illuminated the sky. She crept toward the glow of the fire and sat. She clutched the comb Dirk had given her the day before and began to pull it through the tangles in her hair. Strand by strand the snarls came undone. As the men began to stir around her, she finished a long braid over her shoulder.

Cook came out to refresh the fire and fried yesterday's corn mush for a tasty breakfast. He put together a dinner packet of salt pork, biscuits, and dried apples. Dawn was still new as the small band of men mounted their horses. Dirk lifted her to the saddle, then swung up behind and led the party out of the palisade gate.

The man Dirk was very quiet, but Heather Flower did not mind. She was safe and she was going back to her father and mother, back to her people. "You are brave to rescue me from the Narragansett. You are clever too. You did not come across your North Sea in the great canoes with wings. You would have been slaughtered by Ninigret. You came by horse following the land."

"Ja. I know the heart and thoughts of Ninigret. I know his land like my own home-country. It is why Captain Gardiner entrusted his best men to my care. It was the wish of your father, as well."

They rode in silence as she thought of her family, her head barely touching Dirk's shoulder. She studied the trail in front of them and listened to the wind in the willows that lined the path. She would know trouble before it could be seen and certainly before any of the rescue party.

At length they entered an open saltmarsh and she relaxed ever so slightly. "They killed my new husband. I saw them. As we celebrated our wedding, Ninigret killed him. My father, mother, and brother were tied up. His warriors held me by my arms and made me watch. My husband looked into my eyes until his last breath. And then Ninigret ordered his men to take me and the other women. They threw us into the bottoms of canoes and rowed swiftly across the black waters."

"You need not tell me this if it hurts you. I know the story. I am sorry for the terrible massacre. I am sorry for your husband and your pain."

"I would die rather than stay with the Narragansett."

"Ja, but you don't have to. You are safe, Heather Flower. Safe with me."

She let her head rock backward until she rested in the hollow of his shoulder. This man she owed her life to. A small smile played at the corner of her mouth—the first smile since she'd smiled at her new husband—as Dirk tried to speak her language with his Dutch accent. It was very different than the English, but she liked the cadence.

They rode long days, with few stops. With the summer solstice only a day behind them, the evening light gave them a long day of travel, and when it faded they bedded down where they could, always with men guarding the night. On the fourth day of travel, Fort Amsterdam was a welcome sight. Heather Flower was given her own quarters that night. The Englishmen slept in their bedrolls by the fire.

At dawn Heather Flower awoke before anyone, as she had each morning. She warmed herself by the fire until the search party joined her. They broke their fast with little cakes the Dutchmen called poffertjes, which she found to her liking. She watched Dirk while he ate with gusto. Her brother, Wyancom-bone, could wolf his food in that way. It would be good to see him again. Soon she would be home.

* * *

Dirk tied his knapsack and musket to the back of his saddle. Moving to the front of Miss Button, he untied her feedbag and talked low as he patted her neck. The last leg of the journey would be a long one. They could make Wading River in two days, but tonight they would need to find shelter somewhere in Samuel Ketcham's valley. Montauk would be another day's ride.

Button's ears flicked toward excited shouts at the front gate. Dirk turned as Joseph and Benjamin Horton rode through to the livery. He strode toward the brothers. "Hallo there!"

"Good morrow to you, Lieutenant." Joseph swung down from his Great Black and stuck out a hand, his gloves tucked under his arm.

"What brings you to New Amsterdam?" Dirk's brow creased as he gripped the Englishman's hand.

"We've been sent to escort Wyandanch's daughter."

Something of a rock formed in his throat and he swallowed hard before answering. "I am her escort. You may accompany your men home with us. We will make Samuel Ketcham's by dark." Dirk looked from the Horton brothers to Biggs.

Benjamin stepped forward and offered to shake. "Captain Gardiner and my father, Barnabas, send their regard and a hearty thank-you, but we are instructed to bring Heather Flower from here. There will be no need for you to travel with us."

A flock of noisy red hens pecked at the dirt in hopes of a seed or kernel of corn. Dirk watched as they bobbed and then scurried in every direction as Heather Flower approached. How would she feel? She trusted him. He wanted to scoop her up onto his horse and ride fast.

Instead, he waited for her to join them. "These men are here to take you home. They tell me I am to stay here at the fort, and you will be under their jurisdiction. Is that what you would want?"

She nodded to Joseph and Benjamin. "Aquai, friends. Dirk, they are like brothers to me. They are the sons of Mary, friend of my aunt Winnie of Southold, Old Yennicott. It would be unkind of me to say no. But I thank you from the heart for what you have done for me. I will never forget you."

Joseph untethered the horse they brought had for her and Dirk stepped forward to brace Heather Flower's foot as she swung to the saddle. He caught her hand as she picked up the reins and gently squeezed. She graced him with her small smile that barely turned the corners of her mouth. Her dark eyes shimmered with dew as she turned away and followed the Horton brothers eastward, away from the fort.

He shielded his eyes against the bright morning sun, watching as the small rescue party rode into the distance. He rubbed his hand across his mouth. He was always so sure of himself. So in control. But in the matter of a moment, from the first they had met, he'd fallen. Ja. He'd fallen all right. He'd never loved before, but there could be no mistaking the jagged pain that started in his throat and burned down to his very heart. He wanted her to come back. No, he wanted to get on Miss Button and chase her.


Excerpted from To Capture Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarino. Copyright © 2015 Rebecca DeMarino. Excerpted by permission of Revell.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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To Capture Her Heart: A Novel 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 38 reviews.
Sparrowhawk24 More than 1 year ago
I am, in all truth, torn with To Capture Her Heart. I really wanted to like this book as I found the synopsis to be intriguing, and the setting to be one I almost always enjoy (Early Colonial Times). However, I just was not able to connect with the plot or the characters in this book. To put it plainly, this book was simply not for me, and I would strongly suggest that you read a couple of reviews before you decide to read this book or not. Seldom, do I ever not finish reading a book in its entirety, but as hard as I tried, I simply was not able to finish reading To Capture Her Heart. My problems with this book started really early in the narrative for the following reasons: 1. The main characters fall victim to insta-love. 2. There is a weak and tedious love triangle to be have  3. The dialogue between this trio was hallow and unaffecting Even more, the writing style is jarring and awkward, and when combined with an overabundance of historical facts and verbiage that doesn’t seem to settle in ease and fluidity, I found myself feeling utterly vexed to say the least.  The deeper problem with To Capture Her Heart however, was with the endless cast of characters ¿ which I found extremely difficult to keep track of. To be frank, this is where the story crumbled in my hands, and where most of my efforts in reading this book was placed. I tried, oh how I tried to piece everything together, but there were just so many pieces to weave and track down; it was draining. To be fair, I did not read book one A Place in His Heart, and perhaps therein lies the problem. Even so, with the glaring issues at hand ¿ the lack of enjoyment, the way in which the story jumps from plot point to plot point, the abrupt transitions, the excessive historical facts, the loads of characters and relationships floating around ¿ I was forced to put the book down. That said, there is certainly an audience out there for this book, I am sure of it. I just I could not bring myself to finish this book.  NOTE: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell Publishing Company for the purpose of this review, it was not required of me to give a positive review, but to solely express my honest thoughts and opinions of this book, which I have done
summer_no9 More than 1 year ago
A Novel By Rebecca Demarino The Southold Chronicles + Book 2 This is a great love story and adventure that make you doesn't want to put this book down. This is fun and full of the story that need to follow and based on the Author inspired by her ninth great-grandparents, Barnabas and Mary Horton. She inherited her love of making and gardening from her mother ; a love of horses, reading and writing from her dad; and the wanderlust gene from both parents. To Capture Her Heart is one of the the pieces of the history love story with adventure of a Princess of the Montaukett tribe the need to be follow and find out the true. I highly recommend this book for everyone to read. " I received this book from Revell Division in exchange for this review "
BethErin More than 1 year ago
Heather Flower is the niece of our good friend Winnie from book 1. She is both widowed and kidnapped on her wedding day, rescued then wooed by two white men. That's enough to make her head spin but then both suitors are stand up guys! Although Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren rescues Heather Flower after her abduction, he's still a bit of the outsider/bad boy since the Montauk are allies of the English. Heather Flower shares a special bond with long-time friend Benjamin Horton but he is also nursing a broken heart. I received the opportunity to read and review this book through Revell Reads. The opinions expressed are my own.
Becky5 More than 1 year ago
Good Historical Interactions, Story lacks Special Appeal... To Capture Her Heart is the first book I have read by Rebecca DeMarino. While I enjoyed the premise of the Indians and the English and the Dutch struggling to find their place in the New World, the book did not find a place among my favorites. I liked DeMarino's characters, but somehow failed to fully connect with them. Given the gravity of some of the situations presented, maybe I felt there wasn't enough suspense. I did enjoy getting a look at Mary and Barnabas's family and how they came to be a cohesive, loving household. That part of the novel will propel me on to read the next book. Both are worth a reader's consideration. DeMarino has well-presented varying attitudes of the many different peoples towards each other. I gratefully received a copy of this book from Revellreads in exchange for an honest review.
kp68 More than 1 year ago
To Capture Her Heart is the second book in Rebecca DeMarino's series, The Southhold Chronicles. This book tells the tale of a young Indian woman, Heather Flower. After a neighboring tribe kills Heather's future husband right before her eyes, Heather is kidnapped by this tribe and they demand a ransom from her father for her safe return. Once the ransom is in their hands, Heather is left in the forest to die! Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren has been sent out with a group to find the Indian maiden. Dirk is struck with awe at Heather's beauty when she is finally located! When Dirk is finally able to return Heather to her friends and family, he realizes that there is another man who also has an eye for Heather. Benjamin Horton's family has been friends with Heather's family for years and Benjamin has been in love with Heather for many of those years. Watch and see what will occur on the pages of this book as these two rivals spar for Heather's attention! This tale was a bit harder read than the other two books in this series; however, it is worth the time to put all the pieces of this story in place!
theskett More than 1 year ago
The most intriguing aspect of Rebecca DeMarino’s Southold Chronicles for me is the time period. Set in the time period of the pilgrims, this historical romance has a focus on the romance aspect. Readers follow Heather Flower, daughter of a native chief, as she mourns the death of her warrior husband. She finds strength in her lifelong friendship with one of the settlers in the English village, and ponders what place in her life the handsome Dutchman might have. At times the story moves a little slowly, but overall I enjoyed reading about Heather Flower’s efforts to help her aunt, Dirk’s efforts to assist in the best way he knows how, and the Horton’s valuable role in the community. The ending is a little abrupt and neatly tied up, although the author’s tone and writing style is consistent.
debhgrty More than 1 year ago
Deb’s Dozen: Rescued Indian princess mourning her slain husband has two suitors. Who wins? 1653 – Heather Flower, Princess of the Montaukett tribe of Long Island, has been captured by a rival tribe, the Narragansetts. Dirk Van Buren, a Dutch lieutenant, has been sent by the English to pay the ransom and rescue her. The rescue is successful, but on the way back to her settlement, Dirk falls in love with Heather Flower. Heather Flower is in mourning for her husband, who was slain by the fierce Narrangansetts during their wedding ceremony. Heather Flower and several other Montaukett young women are kidnapped and taken away. The Montauketts live in harmony with the English on Long Island, so the English Captain Gardner and Wyandauch, the Chief, send the bounty to free Heather Flower. As Dirk and his company ready to leave Fort Amsterdam, they are met by Benjamin Horton and his brother, Joseph, who have been instructed to escort Heather Flower the rest of the way home. Dirk realizes, as she leaves, how deeply he has fallen. Benjamin and Joseph are friends of the family who are to bring Heather Flower to her father’s home in Montauk, but Heather Flower demures and insists on being taken to her Aunt Winnie’s house in Southold so that she will have time to mourn and heal. As they are traveling, we learn that Benjamin too is in love with Heather Flower. How will Heather Flower recover from her mourning and how long will she take? What about Dirk and Benjamin? Are the Dutch and English at war or not at war? What about the other Indian maidens who were also kidnapped? How will this triangle play out? To Capture Her Heart sums up what the entire book is about—the attempts of Dirk and Benjamin to win Heather Flower. We are reminded about their goals in every chapter if not more often. I eventually got irritated at the repetion and the “pining” the guys seemed to go through. The book seems to start in the middle. To know the full situation and background, you need to have read the first book in the series, A Place in His Heart. The character of Heather Flower was the most complex—we anguished with her in her loss and in her indecision about what to do with her two suitors, both of whom she cares for. DeMarino does present both of the men fairly equally, although Benjamin gets more print space. The customs of the time are pictured, but I felt the living seemed a lot easier than I would have assumed given the period of history. I give the book a generous four stars. If you like predictable romance in a historical setting, you’ll like this book. Rebecca told me at our interview at the International Christian Retail Show last June that the books are based on her ancestors, several “greats” back. Heather Flower is a legend of the time and Ben Horton is based on an ancestor. Although the DeMarinos live in Washington State across from Portland, Oregon, all of her detailed research was done in Long Island. She feels a strong connection to her ancestors and is very interested in genealogy. Her ninth great-grandfather, Barnabas Horton, whom we learn about somewhat in this book, was a Puritan who came to the New World with the goal of establishing a church and ministering to the Native Americans. The first book in The Southold Chronicles, A Place in His Heart, tells his story. Her forebears have kept a strong grounding in the Lord throughout their history. Rebecca says, “Who we are today is so based on our past—we don’t even realize how much.”
MrsTina42MR More than 1 year ago
To Capture Her Heart***** book 2 Southold Chronicles by Rebecca Worley DeMarino Heather Flower, a princess of the Montaukett tribe, is celebrating her wedding feast when tragedy struck as a rival tribe attacks and kills her husband, taking her captive. After her ransom was paid she was bound and left to die by her captives—until Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren comes and rescues her. Staying with her aunt and with the help of English friends—Horton family—Heather Flower is recovering from her ordeal and grieving the loss of her husband. Two men compete for her heart, longtime friend Benjamin Horton and Lt. Dirk. How does she choose between these two honorable men? Even though I have not read the first book in this series, A Place in His Heart, I was able to get a feel for the relationships of the characters in the story. There is much to like about this book, the real-to-life characters face challenges much like we do today. However, since this is set in 1653, there are many challenges they faced unique to the time and Rebecca DeMarino described those challenges well. I especially liked the in-depth descriptions of the bead work Heather Flower used to create beautiful items and the wampum’s. I liked the historical aspect of the story, which included the conflict between the different tribes as well as between the English and the Dutch. I could feel how hard the decision Heather Flower faced was in choosing one of the men who loved her, or choosing another path and her desire to follow God's leading in whichever path she choose. I found myself going back and forth between Ben and Dirk, and which one would she ultimately choose. I knew who I wanted her to pick, the ending was an unexpected surprise. The secondary characters are an important part of the story-line and the way their lives intertwine together. This story is full of drama, adventure, grief, joy, hardships, tragedies, triumphs, love, strong faith woven throughout the story and so much more to make this a fantastic story. ~I won a copy of this book on Colonial Quills Tea Party and author, this is my honest review~
Fitzysmom More than 1 year ago
The book that began this series, A Place in His Heart, was the first book that I read by Rebecca DeMarino. It was a fascinating tale about the journey to the New World with Barnabas and Mary Horton. To Capture Her Heart picks up the story several years later when the colony is well established and their son Ben is a grown man thinking of settling down. He's recently been dumped by his intended so now he is determined to win the affection of his childhood friend Heather Flower. When the story begins we are swept up into the rescue of Heather Flower by Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren. While everyone is grateful that Dirk was able to rescue Heather Flower he is still Dutch and most of the townspeople don't trust him. But right away he captures Heather Flowers affection much to the irritation of Ben. As the story moves along the author continues to give us a bit of insight into the beginnings of our great nation. It's easy to romanticize it all but even after leaving the persecution and establishing a colony there were many obstacles to face and conquer. I enjoyed the continuing story of the characters that we met in A Place in His Heart. I also look forward to the third book in the series. There's a sneak peek in the back of the book that will make you wish it would hurry up and be published! Rebecca DeMarino does a splendid job of combining history and romance to keep the pages flying. When a book is part of a series I'm always asked if it can be read as a stand alone novel. The answer this time is probably but you'll be missing out on so many details from the first novel that I wouldn't recommend it. In my opinion I think you need to know the background of the Horton family to understand some of the dynamics going on. I say just treat yourself and read both books . . . and then pick up the third when it is out! I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
Shay14 More than 1 year ago
I must admit, I'm a little disappointed at this book. While it was well written and historically interesting, it didn't grab my attention the way the first book, A Place in His Heart, did. I did enjoy catching up with Mary and Barnabas and the rest of the Horton clan, and I was glad to see they finally got their house full. I also enjoyed the interesting tidbits about Heather Flower's life as the daughter of the sachem. I felt, however, that the love triangle between Heather Flower, Ben Horton, and Dirk was forced. It didn't seem natural to me. Heather Flower's abrupt conversion was also a little disappointing. I would have liked to have seen more development in her character on that front. Overall, though, this was a very enjoyable story and I look forward to reading more by this author. *I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review.*
eLynda More than 1 year ago
A Gentle Historical Romance In To Capture Her Heart, Rebecca DeMarino weaves a family history seamlessly with colonial times to create a beautiful tapestry of a novel that held me riveted from the first pages through the sigh-worthy ending. For the most part, this story is a romantic triangle set in the earliest days of European colonization. Heather Flower finds herself caught between two men, a childhood friend and the man who rescues her from an enemy tribe. Unlike many other romantic triangles I have read, there did not seem to be one clear-cut frontrunner for most of the novel—I was kept in suspense literally until the closing pages. And it was hard for me to even decide who I preferred; both potential heroes were good men who wanted what was best for the woman they loved. The historic detail demonstrated the pull and tug between cultures in Heather Flower’s life; I would have perhaps expected the white characters’ families to be the reluctant ones about intermarrying, but instead we got the native perspective on that. The fear of a people being lost to history was contrasted with the desires of the heart, and it was both poignant and powerful as she faced the conflict between duty and love. Another unexpected bit of history was the persecution people faced because of their religious convictions, this after coming to the New World. I never considered that those who came for freedom would have struggled with it here as well, but the prevailing mentality seemed to be that of keeping the groups and beliefs separate. Rather than living in the same towns, perhaps influencing current residents to worship or believe a different way, those who thought differently were excluded, having to find and settle their own land and form their own communities. These details were related through thoughts and dialogue with other characters, and it helped me to see through the eyes of the people living during that time rather than feeling as if I was reading a history text. Instead, I was an observer of a rich environment given depth and flesh by the amazing details contained in the writing. I really enjoyed the spiritual component as well. Heather Flower struggled to trust God with her future, feeling Him untrustworthy because of her husband’s death on their wedding day. I found the tension between the Great Spirit and God to be fascinating and loved how the novel addressed this topic throughout, culminating with a beautiful scene of redemption and understanding towards the end of the novel. But perhaps my favorite part of the novel is where love, strength, and sacrifice all came together in the mind of one of the main characters. There was a lot of truth and beauty in the passage where this occurs and it served to highlight one of the major themes running through the novel. Again, however, it was so intertwined in the text that it occurred naturally; it wasn’t until the novel was complete that I realized it had been there from the beginning. I would highly recommend this novel to both romance readers and those interested in history, especially early colonial America. I don’t think the reader has to necessarily be a fan of both because there is so much here that will appeal across genres. Because historical romance is my favorite, however, this novel was perfect for me and proved to be an outstanding story with excellent writing. I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for this honest review.
tmurrell2 More than 1 year ago
Heather Flower is an Indian princess. When she's captured by another tribe of Indians, her father sends a Dutch man named Dirk to rescue her. She watched her husband be murdered and can't go back home, so she goes to visit her aunt until her heart can heal. A long time friend Ben is there to help her feel welcome in his community again. Heather and Ben must heal their broken hearts and decide if they have room to let another person in again. The story also catches the reader up on the happenings of the small community that was introduced in book one. This is a book that is rich in details and has a large cast of characters. It is a historical family saga that spans quite a bit of time. The book picks up approximately 12 years after book one ends and tries to catch the reader up on everything that has happened since. I was immediately bogged down in the details. The romance was weak and didn't grab me. There were so many characters that I had a hard time remembering who was who, despite the fact that I'd read the 1st book. I wasn't convinced of the great love between the two characters and couldn't really get a feel for their personalities. This book will appeal to someone who enjoys this type of thing, but I couldn't get into it. I received this book free of charge from Revell Reads in exchange for my honest review.
SunnieReviews More than 1 year ago
I was lucky enough to win this book in a contest. The historian-genealogist in me loved this book. The sister-in-law of a native-American loved it. It was the second book of the series called the Southold Chronicles. The story revolves around the Horton family in the early 1600's. Heather Flower is an Indian princess who has been kidnapped by another tribe. Left for dead, her life is spared during the time of early Dutch settlers. I am very aware of this time period because of my genealogical research in the New Netherlands during these years. I found the book just fascinating and hope to be able to read more from this excellent author! Great book!
VicG More than 1 year ago
Rebecca DeMarino in her new book, “To Capture Her Heart” Book Two in The Southold Chronicles series published by Revell brings us into the life of Heather Flower. From the back cover: In an uncertain time, she faces a choice that will change her life forever It is 1653 and Heather Flower, a princess of the Montaukett tribe, is celebrating her wedding feast when a rival tribe attacks, killing the groom and kidnapping her. Though her ransom is paid by an Englishman, she is bound by her captors and left to die–until she finds herself rescued by handsome Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren. Still tender from her loss, Heather Flower begins to heal in the home of the Hortons, English friends of her people. Torn between her affection for Dirk and her longtime friendship with Ben Horton, Heather Flower must make a difficult choice–stay true to her friend or follow her heart. Exploring a unique slice of history, Rebecca DeMarino transports you to the wild land that would eventually become Long Island, New York. “To Capture Her Heart” is a romance. It is also a historical novel giving us what life was like on Long Island in 1653. It is also an adventure that will capture your attention and not let go. Did I mention that it is a romance? Ms. DeMarino has written a story that is utterly captivating and filled with the most interesting characters you ever want to meet. Dirk and Heather are just perfect and we come to know them and root for them to succeed at everything they set out to do. Is life easy for them? No. I am amazed at what people had to go through back then and doubly amazed that they came through it at all. However, Ms. DeMarino is highly talented and keeps, not only the story moving, but she keeps it at a high level of quality. I am glad I found this wonderful author and am really looking forward to the next book in this series. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have 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.”
SherreyM More than 1 year ago
Rebecca DeMarino is a masterful writer and researcher. In her novel, To Capture Her Heart, the second book in The Southold Chronicles, DeMarino’s writing contains sufficient clarity so as not to leave the reader who hasn’t read the first book behind. This book has the strength to stand alone. Historical fiction is a captivating genre for this reader. Not a student of history who enjoyed long, boring lectures, I enjoy learning history through the research, the facts shared, and the fictional story built around the well-researched facts. Here again DeMarino takes the threads of centuries past, stories from the time and place, facts, emotions, and her own life experiences and weaves a magnificently told story. The story of Heather Flower and her family and friends in Southold is set in the mid-1650s, a time when the Dutch and the English were still bickering, quarreling, and often fighting over religious beliefs, land ownership, and rights of citizens. Heather Flower’s tentative emotions during the story are impacted by several factors (I won’t spoil it for you!). Among them, the attraction an Englishman and a Dutchman have for her affections. It is Heather Flower’s decision to make, and it is a difficult one. What will she do? How will she make up her mind? I highly recommend this novel to anyone who loves fiction based in history, Christian principles, and the early settling of the eastern part of our country. Rebecca DeMarino does not disappoint. Once the story begins, it picks you up and carries you away! FCC Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review. Opinions expressed are solely mine.
Moonpie72 More than 1 year ago
What a wonderful historical Christian romance! It has so many things going for it than just being well written and a great story! It is clear the author has meticulously researched the time, 1653, and details about the European settlers in America. In addition, some of the characters are based on some descendants Ms. Demarino’s personal family tree. All this combined develops some realistic characters and helps the reader slip into their era and lives. Another big plus for me was the strong spiritual center to the story, played out in the their lives.. There was a lot of scripture application which I am sure was a part of the original setters existence, to be able to handle all the hardships they faced. The book begins with Heather Flower, Indian princess of the Montaukett tribe, lying bound and left to die after an attack of the fierce Narragansett tribe. It had been her wedding day, and she was about to marry the man she had grown up with and loved, only to watch him be murdered in cold blood. After ransom was paid, instead of releasing her the rival tribe left her helpless and alone. Thirteen other women were taken but she had no idea if her friends were dead or alive. As part of a search party, Dutch Lt. Dirk Van Buren comes to her rescue. There is an immediate spark between them. To heal from her tragic loss she goes to live with her aunt and her tribe. Nearby is an English settlement that has been close friends to her family since she was small. There also lives Benjamin Horton a childhood friend who has always loved Heather Flower. He wants very much to make her his wife. Her emotions are in turmoil. She still grieves over the loss of her husband yet she is drawn to both of the men? What should she do? The author did a beautiful and skillful job of simultaneously presenting the daily details of the individual characters daily lives and their relationships with one another too. Along with this, she included historical details in many areas: politics, European and Indian customs, work, home life, childbirth, challenges and much more. Each character was well developed and their particular personalities made them seem very real. Add to all this a surprise ending! I have not read the 1st book of the series, A Place in His Heart, but I am definitely going to! This book stood alone but I am anxious to read what led up to the story. At the end is a sneak peek at book number 3 that is coming. Can’t wait! I received this book free from the Revell Publishing. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
ARS8 More than 1 year ago
To Capture Her Heart is a rich historical story that explores the history of Long Island, New York, especially the turbulent time between the Dutch and English. Heather Flower, our heroine, is an interesting character as she may have been a real person or just a legend according to the author’s notes. However, in this story Heather Flower has just been through a horrible ordeal due to a rival Native American nation and was rescued by one of the heroes, a Dutchman by the name of Dirk Van Buren. I say one of the heroes as this story does contain a love triangle. The other gentleman is a lifelong English friend of Heather Flower by the name of Benjamin Horton. This story does pick up from the first in the series and the Horton family plays a prominent role in this book. I have not read the first one and I do not think you need to unless you want a much richer history of this family and town. I enjoyed this story, it was a slower read for me but the details and the wildness of this untamed America held me in the pages of this book. The cover of this book and its predecessor are beautiful. I received a copy for an honest review from Revell Publishing and the opinions are my own.
BookReviewerNicole More than 1 year ago
_______________________________________________ *My Thoughts* I first decided I need to read this book when I read the male protagonist's last name. Kind of a strange reason huh? Read on and I'll explain. Dirk Van Buren. My mom's maiden name was Christina Van Der Groef. The connection, is that I am about 50% dutch, 25% Norweigian, and 25% German. I was so excited! Never before had I read a book on a Dutchman, particularly a Lieutenant. Add in a Native American princess and you're about as diverse as they come! That's the aspect of this book that I really liked. I've never read a diverse story with so much information in it without it feeling like a History channel 2 hour special. The cover is just the beginning of the beauty within. That being said, some may not like the fiction aspect of it although I loved it. There is not as much depth with the characters as I normally would like but with this, it works. And reading others' reviews when they read both book one and two, I have no doubt that she'll get to that depth! I loved Heather's interactions with both the men in her life-although the love at first sight opinion of Dirk's seemed a little far-fetched. While this is the second book in the series, I did not read book one and was not lost at all. ____________________________________________________ *My overall thoughts* To Capture Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarino is historical fiction at it's finest!! Diverse cultures and a captivating story line makes for a perfect porch swing read...which is just what I did! __________________________________________ *My Rating* I give To Capture Her Heart by Rebecca DeMarino... 4 1/2 stars!! *I received this book from the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review, which I have given. All thoughts were my own and I was not compensated in any other way.
BrittanyMc More than 1 year ago
To Capture Her Heart is book two in The Southold Chronicles. The story can be read as a stand alone, but I definitely suggest reading book one, A Place in His Heart, first. There are so many returning characters and a very detailed backstory, so I think book one really enriches the reading experience for book two. I enjoyed this story and the rich historical detail that the author provides. I loved seeing how Barnabas and Mary’s family had grown. I also really liked all three of the main characters in this story. Dirk, Benjamin, and Heather Flower were all interesting to read about. I honestly did not know who Heather Flower was going to choose for most of the book. I would have liked a bit more romantic tension between Heather Flower and both men. Just when I thought the tension would ramp up, it ended up simmering. However, I still felt that the story was thorough, complete, and enjoyable. I was very excited to read an excerpt from book three and I am anxiously awaiting that story! I received a complimentary copy of this book from Baker Publishing in exchange for my honest review.
SavannaKaiser More than 1 year ago
This kind of setting always grabs my attention. For one, I haven’t read a lot of historicals set in this era, so that’s refreshing. I appreciate learning details from different time periods and watching the different cultures influence and impact each other. To Capture Her Heart really goes to show that history can come alive through fiction. Readers can time-travel with authentic, well-researched writing like this. I had not read the first in this series, though, and I felt a bit lost throughout the book. There were a LOT of characters and it was hard keeping them all straight. I had expected the story to focus around Heather Flower, but much of the book also focused on previous characters and family members. I would not say this is a stand-alone. I’d recommend reading the first in the series before picking up this one. Some things happened so fast I couldn’t keep up. The two men she’s torn between, for instance, fall in love with her from the very start. It wasn’t quite believable to me. Plus, I wasn’t always sure where her emotions and feelings were at. Some scenes didn’t feel pivotal to the overall plot and had me skimming over the small parts. And I don’t like to skim. :( But I will say this… love triangles intrigue me and this one definitely kept me guessing. I had no clue how it was going to end. The historical details laid a strong foundation for the story and I felt the author did a good job of writing the readers into that world. Thank you to Revell for providing a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
MelissaF More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In this second book in The Southold Chronicles we once again enter the lives of the Horton family and their many friends, this time during the year of 1653. Benjamin Horton, the second oldest son, is in love with his childhood friend, Heather Flower. Heather Flower, princess of the Montaukett tribe, struggles with her emotions following the rescue from her kidnappers who killed her groom on their wedding day. Benjamin understands her need for time to heal, but worries about the intentions of her rescuer, Dutch Lieutenant Dirk Van Buren who also has eyes for the lovely princess. Through the telling of Benjamin’s story, DeMarino reveals the bond between the members of the Horton family and their dearest friends. She opens a window for her readers to see how the English and their native neighbors learned from, supported and depended upon one another. I found the descriptions of how daily chores and winter preparations were accomplished fascinating, and how bits of free time were spent inspirational. I am anxious to try Mrs. Horton’s recipe for pippin [apple] pie. The story moves at a slow, relaxed pace, and will appeal to readers who like characters to be fully developed. It will be less appealing to those who prefer being kept in suspense, steep climaxes and lots of action. The author was inspired by her own family’s history in the settling of what would become Long Island, and fans of historical fiction will appreciate the research behind her writing. While I don’t always read an author’s acknowledgements section, this time I did. When reading the author’s comments about her father, Howard M. Worley, who authored his first book at the age of eighty-nine, I was reminded of an article I had recently read in Guideposts magazine. Sure enough I flipped through and found Rebecca DeMarino’s article about her father’s writing and how it was impacted by a heart attack in the May, 2015 issue! The article demonstrates that Rebecca’s own family has a strong support system, maybe being what inspired the same among her fictional Horton family. I thank Revell Publishers and Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for providing To Capture Her Heart for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation for a favorable review and the opinions expressed here are strictly my own.
Samantha23 More than 1 year ago
This was my first book by Rebecca DeMarino and it certainly won't be my last. For anyone who thinks this is just one more romance novel, you are wrong. This so much more than just a love story. OF course, there is romance, but Rebecca really drags the reader back in time, when relationships between Indians, Dutch and English were hard. Throughout the book, the characters are pushed to make hard decisions that will have consequences and shape their future. The story is really touching. I loved learning more about that period of history as I don't see a lot of books set during that time. I'd also like to mention that the ending wasn't predictable, unlike many other books I read! I suggest that people read the books in order though. I hadn't read the first book when I read this one and although I was able to understand very well as a stand alone I believe you can get a more complete experience if you read the first one first. There are a lot of characters that were presented in the first book and I can't wait to know more about their backstory by reading the first book. Thanks to the author for providing me a copy of the book. It did not affect my review.
Britney_Adams More than 1 year ago
With a beautiful title that promises a story of love and romance, To Capture Her Heart delivers that and more! Well-researched historical details bring this story to life, as do its many meaningful characters. I enjoyed the dramatic story line and the romances that develop as the story unfolds. Rebecca DeMarino has penned another compelling story in The Southold Chronicles! While this book can be read as a stand-alone, I recommend reading the series in order. Reading Book 1, A Place in His Heart, allows the reader a better understanding of the characters, their history, and their journeys. I was fascinated to learn that the author’s own family history inspired this series and eagerly await the release of Book 3! I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review. I appreciate the opportunity to read this story and share my thoughts.
Bookworm_Debbie More than 1 year ago
This is an incredible historical novel! I have thoroughly enjoyed returning to Southold on Long Island. It was great to catch up with Barnabas and Mary Horton and all of their friends and family. Thirteen years have passed since book #1 and I loved seeing the changes as the boys have grown to manhood and one is married, the other is looking for the woman that God wants him to marry. There have also been a number of new additions to the family over the years and we were introduced to these little ones. The descriptions of how things were done were so detailed that it was a joy to read and really think about the changes that time has made in household chores. This book had the added bonus of one of the main characters being a Native American of the Montaukett tribe. Rebecca DeMarino included some wonderful explanations about how the individual beads and then wampum which fascinated me. I have never studied this time period and what life was like beyond what I got in school. I’m sure that the tension between the English settlers and the Dutch settlers was researched and then accurately depicted. I knew that there were problems between the different tribes of Native Americans so that was no surprise to me. I was totally caught up in all of these conflicts that were a part of the story. The balance between the conflict and the romance was wonderful. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher is exchange for my honest opinion.