The Cumberland Bride by Shannon McNear
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
It is 1794 and Karl Gruener has decided to move his family from Tennessee to Kentucky and he has asked Indian scout Thomas Bledsoe to be their guide. What follows is a journey filled with hardships, danger, and excitement as Bledsoe leads the Gruener family in their trip along The Wilderness Road. They have been forced to leave most of their belongings behind and they are faced daily with the possibility of being attacked by the Shawnee Indians. Kate Gruener is one of the young women on this journey and she is especially eager to learn more about Kentucky and about scout Thomas Bledsoe. It eventually becomes apparent that he is very aware of Kate also and then the unthinkable happens! Thomas and Kate are take captive by the Shawnee Indians, Thomas escapes but it is uncertain if Kate will ever be able to return to her family.
I loved this new historical fiction book by Shannon McNear and it is very clear that she has put a lot of time and effort into researching this time period. I felt as if I was seeing this unsettled land with all of its plants and wildlife and I was thrilled to see the mentions of the early settlements of Lexington, Danville and Boonsesborough. They are all a part of this story and these places are still a part of my home state of Kentucky. I enjoyed seeing Kate's sweet interest in Thomas from their first meeting and wondered just when he would notice her. Thomas had always declared his intention to stay away from a romantic attachment because he didn't want to cause a woman worry and grief if he should ever fail to return from his journeys. It is only when Kate is in such danger that Thomas recalls these words spoken by his sister Truth. "One of these days, you're going to meet a girl, get so attached to her that you won't want to be without her." (p. 163) Suddenly, Thomas realizes just how true these words were!
The Cumberland Bride is filled with historical facts and the reminder of just how strong these early settlers were, just how much faith they possessed and how deeply they relied on prayer. It is also a romance that features moments that take your breath away. This is the fifth book in the The Daughters of the Mayflower series but it can be read as a stand-alone book. I recommend it to all who enjoy Christian romance and historical fiction.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Barbour Publishing and was under no obligation to post a review.
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