It is the spring of 1943. With a wedding and a cross-country move, Millie’s world is about to change forever.
If only her past could change with it.
Soon after the break of day, Bump will become Millie’s husband. And then, if all goes as planned, they will leave the rain-soaked fields of Mississippi and head for the wilds of the Colorado Rockies. As Millie tries to forget a dark secret, she hasn’t yet realized how drastically those past experiences will impact the coming days.
For most of Millie’s life, being free felt about as unlikely as the mountains moving. But she’s about to discover that sometimes in life, we are given second chances, and that the only thing bigger than her past … is her future.
|Publisher:||David C Cook|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.30(d)|
About the Author
Julie Cantrell is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of Into the Free, which won Christy Awards for Best First Novel and Book of the Year 2013. Cantrell has served as editor-in-chief of the Southern Literary Review and is a recipient of the Mississippi Arts Commission Literary Fellowship. She and her family live in Mississippi, where they operate Valley House Farm.
Read an Excerpt
WHEN MOUNTAINS MOVE
By Julie Cantrell
David C. CookCopyright © 2013 Julie Cantrell
All rights reserved.
FRIDAY, MAY 7, 1943
Church bells strike to announce the hour. My body quakes from the force of the sound, and again from the force of the man, uninvited. He pushes me down, nails his elbow into my throat. I fight, kicking, clawing. Screaming.
Someone calls my name. "Millie?"
I throw my fists into the night, lunging white-eyed toward the voice.
"Millie! Stop! It's me." Bump wraps his arms around me, and I jerk back, pushing against him. He withdraws, asking, "You okay?"
I don't answer. Instead, I stare at the pitch of the darkened ceiling and pull myself from the depths of the dream.
Bump slides close again and touches my hand. "You always sleep in your boots?" He smiles, trying to make light of the dark. He doesn't know I've spent the last six weeks fully dressed, even through the nights, always ready to run or to fight. I try to measure my breaths, slow my pulse. It was only a dream, Millie. Calm down.
"Storm's got me a little edgy." I offer Bump an apologetic smile. I don't tell him how every time I'm alone, I stay on full alert. How strange sounds and shadows and even the wind can make me look behind and check for danger. I wasn't always this way, and I hope I can feel safe again someday, soon. For now, I leave the cot in the corner of the foaling room and walk across the red dirt floors of the Cauy Tucker rodeo barn, still trying to emerge from the haunting nightmare.
"Was I screaming?" I ask Bump. I'm always fighting and screaming in the dream. If only I could have done that during the actual assault. The one that left me frozen and numb. Silenced on the steeple-room floor.
"Nope." Bump's footsteps follow my own. "Not a sound. Just mean as a wolverine." He smiles. Even now, weeks after the event, my dreams are the only place I have a voice.
Bump tries again to cheer me. "Didn't mean to scare you." He wraps his arms around my waist and turns me toward him, delivering a strong kiss, pumped with passion. I try to let him ease my fears, but when he moves me against the coarse wooden slats of the barn, my shoulder hits the wall a little too fast. A little too hard. I flinch. A rising panic tenses my throat. My body ebbs and flows between desire and disgust. It's not his fault, Millie. You can do this.
There's no debating whether I love Bump; I do. But there is too much he doesn't know about me. I want to give him the truth right now, before we say our vows. Then maybe he could understand why he's found me frightened like this in the middle of the night.
"It's after midnight," I struggle to find words to start. "What are you doing out here?" I reach for a towel to dry him. He's walked in the rain all the way from the back barracks where he stays with the rodeo hands, a mixed bunch of cowboys stopping by between ranch jobs.
"Missed you is all." He pulls me back to him, moving his fingers from my shoulders, down to my waist, then below. At seventeen, I should want this, and not long ago I did. But now everything is different. Now, I am afraid of what a man can do, even one as good and kind as Bump.
I pull away, gently, and hope Bump knows I don't want him to leave. I just want him to slow down. Give me time. I'm not ready. "Bad luck to see me before the wedding." I smile.
"No such thing." Bump catches my ear in his mouth and whispers, "How's that cot holdin' up?"
"Oh, the cot." I run my fingers around his drenched collar, beneath his stubbled chin. "I don't know what I'll do without it." I try to match his playful mood. "Think there'll be room to take it with us?"
"No room at all. In fact, I'm thinkin' we'd better give it a final farewell right now. Somethin' to remember us by."
Thunder clashes, and the paint mare in the back stall releases a loud, guttural response. Two others yell back to her, and the barn is suddenly a symphony of horse talk. I tap Bump's chest with my finger and softly scold, "I think we can wait, Mr. Anderson."
"Impossible." He brushes my dark curls behind my ear and kisses my neck, then my collarbone. Just six weeks ago, a kiss like this would have sent me into flame. But that was before. Before Bill Miller caused my body to react with panic every time it is touched. Bump struggles to remove my shirt in the dark, the small buttons proving difficult for his strong fingers. "Was hopin' I'd find you undressed at this hour." One button slips through.
I pull from him and move toward the hay room, flipping a light switch and drawing louder reactions from the horses. Bump stays behind and watches me walk. I glance back long enough to catch his crooked smile, the one that tugs my heart in its tender corners and makes me cling to the possibility of happy-ever-after.
As the radio warms from a soft buzz to a heavy hum, I spin the tuner. Between cracks of static, the final few notes of an unfamiliar song seep out from the speakers. Then, a pause, before Harry and Trudy Babbitt give voice to the Kay Kyser hit from last year. "Who wouldn't love you?" they sing. "Who wouldn't care?"
With a flick of my wrist, I toss Bump a pair of leather gloves. He catches them without looking, both in one hand. "Gettin' cold feet?" Worry lines his voice.
"Not a chance." I try to sound positive as I haul hay to the row of stalls. "I just figure we might as well get a jump on the morning jobs. We've already got the horses all confused." Bump follows with some old winter carrots, giving one wrinkled stalk to each horse. "How about you?" I ask. "You ready to back out?"
"You kiddin', Millie? I would've married you the first day I saw you."
Outside, the moon has sunk behind swollen clouds, and the stars have been swallowed by storm. In here, the fan blades spin, as the bright bulbs buzz like strange mouths shouting from the heavens. "Tell him, Millie," they yell. "Tell him the truth!" Bugs swarm the lights, as if even they want to stop all the noise.
I take a carrot from Bump and move back to offer an extra one to my favorite horse, Firefly. She takes it in three bites while I pet her soft bay coat. "I'll miss you, sweet girl." I trace the white blaze that lines the bridge of her nose. "But you'll be joining us in Colorado soon. I promise." She nickers. I hope she understands.
Bump runs his fingers along my spine, then pulls me to him again. I try to let the truth surface, but no matter how much I want to tell him everything that's happened, the deep, black force of fear gets in the way.
* * *
Between Bump's repeated attempts to take me to the cot and my stubborn resistance, we spend the hours filling feed bins and topping water pails, grooming the mares and mucking the stalls. By the time we cross the final job from our daily list, the rain stops and the sun creeps in.
We're just cleaning up the last of the brushes when a wave of nausea slams me, one of many I've been dealt in recent days. I bolt for the door and Bump follows me, concerned. "You all right?" He moves closer, speaks softly. I bend behind the pines and try not to let him see me get sick. With all that's happened in the last year, it's no wonder my gut is a wreck. But life is better now. Much better. I hope this is the last time I ever let worry get the best of me.
"I'm okay." I wipe my mouth with the back of my shirtsleeve, mortified. "Nerves, I guess."
"Nerves?" Bump seems stung. "Thought you weren't gettin' cold feet."
"Not about the marrying part." It's not a complete lie. "But yes, to be honest, I am a little nervous about the rest of it."
"What rest of it?"
My voice grows quiet. It's the old Millie coming through again. Yellow. Weak. The truth is ... I'm not sure I deserve Bump, and I wonder if others are thinking the same thing.
"What I mean is, your entire family is coming. I have to stand up there in front of everyone we know and ..."
"And what?" Bump's jaw sets. His shoulders stiffen.
"And ..." I look away. "Pretend I'm good enough for you." I step around a mud puddle and make my way back into the barn, hoping the smells don't get to me again.
Bump tromps right through the puddle. "Good enough? For me? Millie, the guys can't believe I ever got you to talk to me, much less marry me. I still keep expectin' you to make a run for it." Then he adds, "Please don't." There's a sound in Bump's voice I've never heard. Doubt.
I give him my full attention again and exhale. Bump's blue eyes hold my own, as he waits for my answer. That same color that first reminded me of hydrangea blooms. "I won't, if you won't," I say. And suddenly, I mean it. No matter how unsure I've been feeling, a promise is a promise. And it's one I want to keep. I move closer, rest my head against his sturdy chest, and allow myself to find safety in his long, lean frame. Bump lets the music move us while Sinatra croons.
A peaceful sky, there are such things
A rainbow high where heaven sings
So have a little faith and trust in what tomorrow brings
"There's something romantically hopeful about having a wedding in the middle of a war." Janine is speaking before she enters the barn. I've known her for six months now, and she's been talking ever since. When she turns the corner and spots Bump with me, her pitch jumps two octaves.
"What in heaven's name are you doing here, Bump?" Janine swoops her arms in big circles and begins to shoo. "It's bad luck! Get!" She gives Bump a frisky nudge, but he manages to plant one last kiss on my cheek before darting for safety.
"If I catch you back in here again before the ceremony, you'll be sorry!" Janine's chirp is less painful to me now than when I first met the spitfire secretary, but I still pinch my ears when she hits certain notes. "He just can't wait, can he?" Janine giggles, and her entire frame, barely five feet high, springs with glee.
I swat at Janine, laughing. We head out to the pasture as a bicycle bell dings from behind us. "Sis! Sis!" Camille's called me this for months. Since the day her mother, Diana, took mercy on me and brought me home to live with them. Camille greeted me that day with an enthusiastic hug and announced she'd "always wanted a sister," as if Diana had just brought home a stray puppy from behind the corner store.
Camille drops her bike onto the wet grass before bouncing her way toward us, making Janine laugh. "Mornin', Camille," I say, lifting my hand to block the sun from my eyes.
"For the record, I no longer answer to Camille. Call me Ann." She lifts her cotton dress and curtsies. Camille always acts years beyond her age; she's only ten.
"Ann?" Janine feeds Camille the attention she craves. "Oh, please, do tell me, why Ann?"
"After Ann Sheridan, of course. Didn't you see her on the cover of Motion Picture Hollywood Magazine? Mabel thinks I look just like her." Camille tilts her chin up and to the right, striking a pose, then spins in circles, making her light pink dress flare. For the moment, every bit of anxiety breaks away and I want to keep feeling like this—hopeful, believing I really can forget the past and that everything is going to be okay.
Janine and I lean against a magnolia tree and watch Camille spin herself dizzy. "How did Diana Miller end up with such a sweet kid?" Janine whispers under a smile. Thank goodness, Camille doesn't hear.
"Diana's not as bad as she seems." I shrug.
Janine rolls her eyes. "If you say so, honey."
"Well, she did take me in when no one else offered."
"Then why in heaven's name did you move into the horse barn, Millie? Everybody thought you'd plumb lost your mind."
I don't dare tell Janine the real reason I left the posh Miller home, or how even the Millers couldn't give me the only thing I ever wanted: a loving family of my own. I think back to the sudden shift in Diana, after she learned that her husband had once been engaged to marry Mama. How quickly her kindness waned and her protective walls went up. How Bill Miller would stare me down at the supper table. Right in front of his wife. "I guess I needed things to be a little more predictable."
"Predictable?" Janine shakes her head. "Honestly, Millie, wouldn't you rather sleep on soft sheets and bathe in a porcelain tub?"
"It's hard to explain, Janine. I admit, life with Mama and Jack sure wasn't perfect. Wasn't even good, most of the time. But at least I knew what to expect. When I moved in with the Millers, lots of things surprised me. Make sense?" I keep my eyes on Camille.
"Well," Janine says, laughing before lowering her voice back to a whisper, "to tell the truth, as tempting as that gorgeous house might be, I'd choose a barn over Diana Miller any day."
I nod, trying to think of a better way to defend Diana.
"Where's the dress?" Camille asks, finally getting dizzy enough to plant her feet. "Can I see it?" She wobbles as if she's about to fall. This makes her giggle.
"The dress? Oh, no, Millie. I forgot the dress!" With that, Janine runs toward the rodeo office calling for Mr. Tucker.
"Not a good sign." Always dramatic, Camille sighs as if there may be no chance of saving this wedding. Anything to stop me from moving to Colorado.
"Worse things could happen," I say, waving it off. "Now let's go check on the most exciting part of the whole day."
"The groom?" Camille blows kisses to make fun of me.
"No, ma'am." I tickle her ribs and remember her obsession with Mabel's iced desserts. "The cake."
* * *
By nine a.m. Bump's relatives are already arriving from the Delta. The pasture is a steamy mess from last night's storm, so Bump spreads straw to protect everyone's shoes from the mud.
"I sure am glad Kenneth found him a good girl," Bump's mother says, offering me a hug before kissing her son on the cheek. She removes his Stetson and tousles his hair.
"I can't believe I got so lucky," I tell her.
Mr. Anderson doesn't say anything, which worries me, but he shakes my hand and Bump's, too. When Bump pulls his father into a hug, the serious elder cracks a rare smile. Mrs. Anderson clasps her hands to her mouth as if this is the sweetest scene she's seen in years. Then she puts her arm around me and says, "Part of the family now, Millie."
Bump winks at me, and it's all I can do not to cry. One of the reasons I fell for Bump in the first place was because of his family. "We ain't got much, but we're good people," Mrs. Anderson teases. And she's right. They may be poor, but they are the kindest, most genuine people I've ever known. Now, they consider me part of this family. My gratitude swells.
"You sure you don't want to move this wedding inside the arena? Drier ground?" Mr. Tucker joins us, puffing his cigar and filling the air with a sweet-tinged cloud of tobacco smoke. It's one of the many smells I've gotten used to in the time I've spent with the rodeo crew, but today the odor makes my stomach churn. Must mean my worries have come back in full force. I think of Mama being taken to East, labeled a "nerve patient," never again to leave the hospital for the mentally insane. Get ahold of yourself, Millie. Don't overreact. This is a good day.
Bump goes back to spreading hay, his polite way of letting Mr. Tucker know this is exactly where we want to have the wedding. Outside, under the trees, where we're most ourselves. No fancy church. No big rodeo production. Just a simple gathering of those we love.
"It'll be beautiful," Janine jumps in, out of breath. She holds a long white garment bag in her hand, and I'm guessing the wedding gown is hidden safe inside.
"But the pasture—" Mr. Tucker protests.
Janine tugs on Mr. Tucker's suit with confidence and stops him before he can finish his thought. "What a bride wants, a bride gets." As usual, she flirts shamelessly.
Releasing two more puffs of smoke into the air, Mr. Tucker winks at me, and says, "What Janine wants, Janine gets." Then he offers a deep base chuckle that makes me wonder how long it'd take him to propose if he could realize Janine loves him.
I move to help spread straw, but Janine whisks me into the rodeo dressing room, chatting the entire way about everything from keeping my palms dry in the heat to the importance of keeping my eyes off the ground. When she points me to the bathtub, I tell her it's the best idea she's had yet. I sink beneath the warmth of the water and rest my head against a rolled towel. Slowly, I inhale. Exhale. Willing my stomach to settle.
Janine catches me just before I slide under the surface when she yells, "Don't wet your hair. We won't have time to dry it." A few minutes later, she's banging on the door. "What's taking you so long in there, Millie? We've got a wedding to attend!"
"Where do you want me, my queen?" I tease, tying a thick cotton robe at my waist and following Janine's pointed finger to a seat. Before I scoot into the chair, she's already at work, painting my nails, powdering my nose, and raving about how I'll "knock Bump's socks off." I let her have her fun.
Excerpted from WHEN MOUNTAINS MOVE by Julie Cantrell. Copyright © 2013 Julie Cantrell. Excerpted by permission of David C. Cook.
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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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
When Mountains Move is the sequel to Julie Cantrell's debut novel, Into The Free. I absolutely loved Into The Free that I was ecstatic when the sequel came out. Julie Cantrell does it again. When Mountains Move does not disappoint. It picks up where Into The Free leaves off, which I was thrilled about. I highly recommend reading Into the Free first and then reading, When Mountains Move. I promise you, you won't be disappointed. It's a beautiful story and both books are amazing. I want to thank Wynn-Wynn Media and David C. Cooke for the complimentary advanced copy of this book.
What an amazing well told story. I do not know why it took me so long to read Julie Cantrell's book Into the Free, but I am so glad I finally did. I am also very glad that after I read that book (in two days) I was able to pick up and read When Mountains Move the continuing story of Millie. This is more of a dual review for both books. I would not recommend reading only the second book as I don't really think of them as stand alone stories. No cliff hanger endings, just the continuing story of Millie and her loved ones. We meet Millie as a young girl living her life in Mississippi and growing up in not an ideal family life. There are many things she needs to come to terms with in her life and the violence surrounding it. When Mountains Move picks up as she begins her new married life moving to Colorado with her husband. Millie is hiding a really big secret from her husband and due to that it is affecting her married life and just really her peace. I just kept telling her to tell Bump (her hubby) but yet understood why she would be so scared to considering her growing up years. These books can be a bit harsh at times, but I enjoyed seeing her stand strong. I enjoyed Millie's character and Bump's, however sometimes I did just want to smack him for her. I really enjoyed the part about the mountains moving in relation to the title. I look forward to more stories from Ms. Cantrell and hope she writes more about Millie and Bump. I received these books from bookfun dot org and my opinions are my own.
When Mountains Move is the 2nd book after Into the Free. I was totally eager to read this book after reading the first one and the author did not disappoint me. I liked this book a little better than the first one, it was really sad to me. In this book emotions are all over the place, for me that is. There was some parts that I got really mad at the characters, some I laughed with them a lot, and a few places where I wanted to cry. It almost seemed to me that the author answered every question I had from the first book, while exceeding all my expectations I had for the second book. I cheered for Millie as she set off for Colorado with her new husband Bump. You remember Bump from the 1st book? He worked with Millie's Dad at the rodeo; but did you remember that he had his future all mapped out and was on his way to a great life, and wanted to take Millie with him. In this book Millie also gets to meet some long lost relatives, some great some not so good. She also meets some new friends, some who treat her great some who terrorize her. And she spends the story getting to know her new husband, but did she forget about her old love. Most of this story takes place in Colorado and I'm familiar with this area, always though about living there. I love the way she describes every little detail of the ranch, the house, the buildings, the trees, the paths she takes to ride her horse and all the emotions of each main and secondary character there is. A lot of thought is put into relationships and how they work also, and what is real and what is not. I love this paragraph - "Oka moves slowly, touching my hair, my face, then my shoulders. When she finally wraps her arms around me, I don't want her to let me go. I am drawn to her in a way I've never been to anyone and I can't help noticing all the ways we are alike. The color of our eyes, our hair, our skin-darker than Bump's even though he spends every day in the sun. She bites her bottom lip and pulls back, closing her fists against her side, perhaps to keep her hands from shaking." I would recommend this book to anyone loves a love story, you can't get any better than this. This book was given to me by BookFun to read in return for an honest review.
A knowledge of the backstory from Into the Free is not necessary to follow the events, but it would certainly be helpful. While the main thread of the novel is Millie's struggling young marriage, there are multiple secondary story lines that contribute to the stress placed on their relationship. It is an ambitious amount of complexity for such a brief book, but Cantrell carries it off pretty well. Some characters do make unconvincingly convenient appearances and exits, however, which are all the more noticeable in the supposedly isolated ranch setting. Some outcomes were just not plausible. Millie accepts (and apparently the reader is supposed to also accept) several flimsy explanations and even refusals to explain suspicious actions. There is a great deal of emphasis placed on "trust," but there is precious little earning of that trust. Conservative Christian readers may be uncomfortable with the integration of Native American spiritual beliefs. As for Christianity, the faith element is integrated frequently but vaguely, making this truly more "inspirational fiction" than "Christian fiction." Recommended for readers of faith-based fiction who enjoy novels centered in marital themes.
Stirring Sequel to Into The Free Millie discovers hope in the opportunity to move forward with her life, far from atrocities of her past. Sadly, Millie's past is destined to become a major component of her future. Her choice between the two men she loves eventually creates questions in her mind regarding whether she has chosen the best course for her future. Opportunity awaits her and her new husband, Bump, as they set out to brave new worlds in the mountains of Colorado, far from the heartache in Mississippi. The challenges they face appear insurmountable when they realize that their "new" homestead is uninhabitable. Using every moment of daylight Millie and Bump attempt what appears to be the impossible, but their perseverance rewards them with an inhabitable farmstead and outbuildings with 5,000 acres of land to raise horses and beef cattle. Julie Cantrell has received numerous awards for her debut novel, "Into The Free," which has been optioned by a production studio with hopes of bringing her story to the big screen! Julie's sequel to "Into The Free" surpassed my expectations! Her attention to detail is outstanding, and her characters are so well illustrated that I felt myself living Millie's life throughout the story! Vivid portrayals of the landscape throughout Millie and Bump's journey to the Rocky Mountains are eloquent, from the yellow flowers Millie so loves to the mountains that greet them. The hardships and disillusions they face are realistic and believable. As with Julie's debut novel, I feel that "When Mountains Move" is an exceptional work of artistic creativity. I highly recommend this inspiring book! Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author and Wynn-Wynn Media in exchange for my honest review. All expressed opinions are my own, and no monetary compensation was received for this review.
This is the continuation of Into the Free. After Millie survives her violent childhood and losing her parents she has to now survive after being raped by her guardian. Millie is getting married to Bump the rodeo veterinarian and moving out west to try and make a go of a ranch for the rodeo owner. They are both young and scared but agree its the best chance for them to make a good life. It's not easy for them and Millie keeps the rape a secret from Bump never really trusting that he won't hurt her. When life throws them curves and Millie is betrayed one to many times she starts thinking of her first love. When he shows up at the ranch looking for Millie, she has to decide whether to eave everything behind for an old dream or learn to trust in what she has. When she decides what she really wants to do with her life her nightmare returns in the form of her rapist trying to take away the most precious thing in her life. This is a story of tragedy, triumph, heartbreak, and healing. I received this as an advanced readers copy from Netgalley.
When Mountains Move By: Julie Cantrell Really liked the book. This the second book after “Into the Free”. What a abusive life Millie had. She gets married to a rodeo vet. Will their relationship make it with the secrets she keeps. When the secret comes out can there be forgiveness? The book has lots to deal with faith, hope and love. I would rate these books as 5 star. Wonder will their be a third one. Great writing Julie.
When Mountains Move is a continuation of the story found in Into The Free, both by Julie Cantrell. The first involves Millies's life from childhood to late teens. The following involves her wedding and life with her husband Bump. They move from the south to the Rockies. They form a homestead from nothing. The friendships and love they develop balance the hardships and challenges they face. Millie harbor's a secret that she needs to share with Bump but is afraid it will change their relationship. I found both books exciting,and difficult to put down. I definitely will be adding Julie Cantrell to my list of authors to follow.I recieved both books from the Book Club Network and David Cook Publishers for my honest review
It was an awesome sequel to "in to the free"! I could not put the book down and was sad when it ended! I think the story could go on and on and i would keep reading!!! Thank you julie for such great writing and story telling.
When Mountains Move by Julie Cantrell This book is the continuation of Millie’s story from Into the Free. I enjoyed this book but must admit I have not yet read Into the Free. It can be read as a stand alone book, but because I enjoyed this one so much I will be reading the first one. When Mountains Move is set in the beautiful Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Young newlyweds Millie and Bump set out across country on their own. As they struggle to build a home, ranch and veterinary practice they face trepidation in the mist of Millie’s secret. Read the story of Millie and Bump’s fear of an uncertain future, the challenge of taking a risks, and the redemption and freedom that can be found when a secret is no more. See how God works out the bad for His own good. Meet her Choctaw grandmother and learn her rich history. The author Julie Cantrell brings the characters to life and walks you through the struggles of the 1940’s. I want to thank the author Julie Cantrell and publisher David C. Cook for bringing good clean Christian books like this one to readers like me. I would also like to thank The Book Club Network Inc. for providing me with this book in exchange for my review.
Another great book from Julie Cantrell! Julie Cantrell has once again written a compelling story about trust and faith. When Mountains Move continues the story of Millie and Bump from where Into the Free left off. Millie is trying to let go of the past, move on, and embrace her future. When she finds herself facing a decision she never anticipated, she must decide: chose what is easier, or what is right. She struggles with telling Bump the truth and must learn what it means to trust - both her husband and God. She also finds that sometimes the only way to let go of the past is to confront it. As in the first book, Into the Free, the writing is superb and the descriptions make it seem like you could actually be there with them. And as in the first book, the faith aspect really disappointed me. Millie continues to pray, but it seems only when she needs something, and Bump has no apparent faith to speak of. Neither reads the Bible and Millie seems to find more comfort in her novels and poetry than anything else. They both let misconceptions stand pretty much unchallenged, instead of confronting them and finding out the truth immediately. I also found it very frustrating that it took Millie the whole book to finally trust Bump with her secret. Ignoring all my complaining and nitpicking, When Mountains Move really is a very good book. The story is engrossing and the characters come alive; they seem like people you might know, had you lived 70 years ago. I also enjoyed seeing Millie grow and learn to see beyond herself. I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a clean and compelling read. Though, I do suggest reading Into the Free before When Mountains Move, as it is the first one and has a lot of back-story needed to understand what’s happening. I received this book through The Book Club Network for my honest review, which I have given.
While When the Mountains Move is an almost immediate continuation of Into the Free's depression era story that follows Millie from her difficult but somehow magical childhood in rural Mississippi through adolescence and into the bloom of her first love and the devastation of her greatest trials and heartbreaks, it is also a different and distinct story of it's own. This is very much a story of a young woman finding her way through the aftermath of trauma, as she and her new husband struggle to rebuild a Colorado ranch that had seen it's own share of tragedies. Only seventeen, Millie has had to grow up quickly, but finds herself unprepared for some of the challenges of her new life as a wife, mother, friend, and a woman of strength and faith. But when a the past comes calling and a new betrayal threatens all she has, Millie finds the strength to carry on. In Millie, Julie Cantrell has created a compelling character whose story is filled with heartbreak, tragedy, hope, faith, and magic. At times emotionally difficult, When Mountains Move is a bittersweet and achingly satisfying read. Highly recommended. The review refers to a finished copy I voluntarily received from the publisher. All opinions expressed are my own.
Though this story is supposed to take place during the years of World War 2, it didn't have much of that feel for me. Minus the occasional mention of food rations, dreaded telegrams from the War Dept. or use of pickup trucks, this could easily be set a hundred years earlier. I was a little disappointed by this, as I'm a huge historical fiction junkie who looks forward to being immersed in the time period I'm promised as the reader, but in this case I could overlook it because of the good story and the important themes behind it. Once again (as she did with Into The Free), Cantrell illustrates the power of having a good support system around you as you move through life, people who honestly believe in you and truly want to encourage you to pursue your dreams. With Bump and Millie, it's also a pretty honest look at the rougher edges of marriage. How do you hang in there when the rosy glow fades a bit and real life sets in? It's tough because Bump was pretty likeable in the first book, but here he gets progressively less so. When Kat comes on scene, Bump's actions get slyly more and more disrespectful toward Millie, the way he dismisses her hard work or knocks her cooking in front of others, just as an example. Meanwhile, Millie is silently showing / battling symptoms of PTSD... but when your husband gets to where he seems annoyed by your very presence, how do you talk about such things? Millie hangs in there though and eventually finds the means to craft a moderately happy life for herself. Personally, I don't really buy what Bump has to say near the end of the book. I'd even go so far as to say she settled. And it irked me that Bump makes himself out to be so innocent and Millie ends up being the apologetic one... Sure, Millie has moments where she catches herself wondering about River, but looking at Bump... there are some scenes in this story that looked seriously shady from a wife's perspective. I do kind of get Millie's line of thought when she explains why she's made these choices, but I couldn't help but close the book feeling that there had to be something so much more fulfilling out there for her than what she ended up with. * For book groups: the most recent edition of the paperback includes discussion guide and writing prompts. Something else to note -- while another of Cantrell's books, The Feathered Bone, has been packaged to match the new covers of Into The Free and its sequel When Mountains Move, I believe The Feathered Bone is actually not tied to Millie's story, but in fact its own separate story. FTC Disclaimer: TNZ Fiction Guild kindly provided me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. The opinions above are entirely my own.
Rape, lie by omission, marriage and a move from Mississippi to Colorado during the 1940's result in a compelling book of love and endurance. Once I got into the book it was hard to put down.
When Mountains Move is the sequel to Into the Free by Julie Cantrell. I have not yet read the Into the Free, but it did not interfere with my enjoyment of the story of Millie and her new husband Bump. These two leave their families and friends in Mississippi and head to Colorado, for a ranch they've never even seen before. Millie works so hard not just to help her beloved Bump build the ranch, but also to hide a horror from her past. But her past keeps rearing it's ugly head in her present. I enjoy Julie Cantrell's writing. She creates characters that are flawed, funny, and beautiful. I enjoyed getting to know Millie and Bump, while following their adventures in Colorado. I voluntarily reviewed this book that I received from The Fiction Guild.
Julie Cantrell is really a great storyteller. I get so into the characters that sometimes it's hard to read the book-especially when bad stuff happens to them! This book is the 2nd book in a series. I didn't read the first one, and kind of wish I had, so you might want to read Into the Free before reading this one. This book deals with a lot of tough/serious issues. It is definitely not a light or lighthearted read, but it is good. I think the first one will also be like this. I was given this book by the Fiction Guild in exchange for an honest review. Thanks!
A good story of life, love, secrets and forgiveness. A young girl marries and moves to Colorado to start a new life with her husband. She carries a big secret that she fears will threaten her marriage. In time, she is forced to tell her secret. This story also includes traditions of the Choctaw Indians that are very interesting.
I received this book for an honest review from the Fiction Guild, it was a very interesting story and the 2nd book I have read from Julie Cantrell. It tells a story of how we all have to overcome obstacles in lives. This young couple were trying to make it in the world. Millie had to overcome having a father who didn't really care about her and made her feel like she was nothing, and then there is Kenneth "Bump" who comes from a sharecropping family who has had hard times. They both of grown up poor but are on there way to making a better life. Bump has been able to Vet school and the opportunity to start a ranch in Colorado and if he makes it profit in three years he can open his vet practice and not owe anything to the man who has set him up. Millie knows animals and is not afraid of hard work. When they get to CO they don't realize how really rural the ranch is. We are talking the period during WWII where everything is not powered or having running water in the house. They still have an outhouse. They have lots of challenges to overcome and they do it with a lot of grit and help. There are some wonderful characters in this story and is well written.
Really good. Could not put book down.
It’s Millie and Bump’s wedding day. Millie is dealing with something horrible that happened. She decides to leave it to God and go through with marrying the man she loves and starting a new life in Colorado. Once they arrive, there are many more bumps they must deal with but with Millie’s grandmother Oka joining them, they just might succeed. This was a decent book. It’s not the type I normally read, but that didn’t deter me. I can’t imagine being Millie in that time period and dealing with everything she had to deal with. I do think there should’ve been a warning about the situation Millie had been in, but I’m assuming it was a situation that happened in the previous book, which I hadn’t read. I recommend. **I received an ARC of this story in exchange for an honest review
Millie discovers hope in the opportunity to move forward with her life, far from atrocities of her past. Sadly, Millie’s past is destined to become a major component of her future. Her choice between the two men she loves eventually creates questions in her mind regarding whether she has chosen the best course for her future. Opportunity awaits her and her new husband, Bump, as they set out to brave new worlds in the mountains of Colorado, far from the heartache in Mississippi. The challenges they face appear insurmountable when they realize that their “new” homestead is uninhabitable. Using every moment of daylight Millie and Bump attempt what appears to be the impossible, but their perseverance rewards them with an inhabitable farmstead and outbuildings with 5,000 acres of land to raise horses and beef cattle. Julie Cantrell has received numerous awards for her debut novel, “Into The Free,” which has been optioned by a production studio with hopes of bringing her story to the big screen! Julie’s sequel to “Into The Free” surpassed my expectations! Her attention to detail is outstanding, and her characters are so well illustrated that I felt myself living Millie’s life throughout the story! Vivid portrayals of the landscape throughout Millie and Bump’s journey to the Rocky Mountains are eloquent, from the yellow flowers Millie so loves to the mountains that greet them. The hardships and disillusions they face are realistic and believable. As with Julie’s debut novel, I feel that “When Mountains Move” is an exceptional work of artistic creativity. I highly recommend this inspiring book!
One of the best books that I have read in a while. Good plot. Good character development. Well written.
This poor couple, not only did they have just the usual first year of marriage problems, they had everything else you could think of thrown at them. These were the days that I would not have wanted to live in. No electricity, no indoor plumbing, no, I like the necessities of life. The story was good and I really got into it. It was very touching and deep in so many ways. When Bump and Millie move to Colorado out in the middle of nowhere, that is where things are good and bad for them. This was really an entertaining story that kept me glued to the pages. I think there was an overabundance of praying going on, however, I guess I would have been doing the same thing if I were in their shoes. I just can't say enough how much I enjoyed the story and how well it was written. I know I am being redundant, but it seriously was that good. I want to thank Thomas Nelson and Net Galley for allowing me to read and review this book by providing me a free e-galley in exchange for an honest review.
Enjoyed this and would like more