Friday, July 5, 2013

Review: Small Town Girl

Small Town Girl (Rosey Corner - Book 2) by Ann H. Gabhart

Publication Date: July 1, 2013
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Imprint: Revell Books
Genre: Inspirational Fiction
Pages: 400
ISBN-10: 0800721845
ISBN-13: 978-0800721848

(Received for an honest review from Revell)

Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository (Audio CD), Christian Book, IndieBound

Ann H. Gabhart on the WEB: Website, Blog, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Goodreads, Fantastic Fiction

Books in the Series:

Angel Sister (2011), Small Town Girl (2013

Coverart: Click on the image for a larger, clearer view of the covers in this series.

Excerpt from Small Town Girl, courtesy of the author's website.


How long can two people stand on the brink of love without plunging in headfirst?

In the autumn of 1941, rumors of war whisper through Rosey Corner. The town practically vibrates with apprehension, as if it is holding its breath. But for Kate Merritt, it seems life is letting out a prolonged sigh. As Kate watches her sister marry the man Kate has loved since she was fifteen, her heart is silently breaking. And even the attentions of Jay Tanner, the handsome best man, can't draw her interest.

Then suddenly, Pearl Harbor changes everything and Kate finds herself drawn to Jay in surprising ways. Could she truly be in love with him? And if he enlists, will she ever see him again?

In her gentle and textured style, Ann H. Gabhart tells a timeless story of love, sacrifice, and longing that will grip your heart and stir your spirit. Fans of Gabhart's Angel Sister will love seeing Kate Merritt all grown-up, as well as other characters they have come to love.


Inspirational fiction author, Ann H. Gabhart takes readers back to the town of Rosey Corners and the Merritt family. Small Town Girl picks up the story of Kate Merritt five years following the events in Gabhart's book, Angel Sister. The heart felt writing and inspiring message of this book will reach the core of readers and brush their innermost feelings. Set during the tumultuous days leading up the attack on Pearl Harbor, Small Town Girl reaches into the hills of Kentucky where World War II touches not only those in the cities but small, tight knit communities as well. An excellent example of romance with an inspirational message!

There are several reasons why I enjoy Ann H. Gabhart's books so much. She is one of my favorite inspirational fiction writers. Being a budding author myself I always appreciate supporting other authors from my home state of Kentucky. Gabhart, is a Kentucky native and is able to really pinpoint the settings and customs of this area of the country. She is able to create her characters in such a way that they represent the way the people here looked at the world, from their speech patterns to the traditions and ways of doing things that are both familiar and moving. 

Small Town girl is set in the days leading up to Pearl Harbor. I think this can sometimes be a hard time period in which to set a book, because of the emotional significance and depth of feeling that surrounds this event in our history. Gabhart did a wonderful job of showing Pearl Harbor and World War II through the eyes of her characters. I thought it was a great way for readers to learn more about how even those living in small town America were affected by the war and how it shaped the lives of everyone.

After reading Gabhart's book, Angel Sister, I had hoped that the author might one day re-visit the Merritt family and I was excited when I found out that Small Town Girl would take readers back to Rosey Corners. Gabhart sets this book five years in the future when Kate has become a young woman. I liked being about to look back at this family and see how much they had changed and grown. Lorena Birdsong is still very present in their lives and I was glad to see that she had not been forgotten.

This story is a truly heartwarming love story and shows that what we think we need to be happy is not always what God has in mind. They say that God works mysteriously, but I like to say he works miraculously and this book shows that. Happy-Ever-After endings are usually very predictable and readers know that in the end the man and woman will most likely get together, but in this book it is all about the journey. It's about the obstacles that sometimes get in the way of love and how they shape the lives and destiny's of those involved. 

Gabhart's message is always present and weaves it's way throughout her novels. It is not overbearing, not does she attempt to beat the reader over the head with it. Her characters live it and that makes all the difference. I liked the way that Gabhart showed love and tolerance for those who have questions about God and how she is able to take legitimate issues and show understanding and wisdom in her writing. A very well written and engaging book, by a very talented inspirational author.

Available July 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

I'm giving this one 5 out of 5 apples from my book bag!

About the Author:

Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several novels, including Angel SisterWords Spoken TrueThe OutsiderThe BelieverThe SeekerThe Blessed, and The Gifted. She lives with her husband a mile from where she was born in rural Kentucky. Find out more at