Selah Kilbrid keeps a dangerous secret: she has the power to heal.
A direct descendent of the Celtic goddess Brigid, it’s Selah’s sacred duty to help those in need. But as the last of the Goddess Born living in the New World, she learned from an early age to keep her supernatural abilities hidden. The Quaker community of Hopewell has always been welcoming, but there’s no doubt they would see her hanged if her gift was revealed.
When a prominent minister threatens to try her with witchcraft unless she becomes his wife, Selah has only one hope—that her betrothed, a distant cousin from Ireland, arrives as planned. Marrying Samuel would keep her secret safe, preserve her sacred bloodline, and protect her from being charged as a witch.
But when news of Samuel’s death reaches the Colonies, Selah is truly on her own. Terrified, she faces an impossible choice—forfeit her powers and marry the loathsome Nathan? Or find an imposter to pose as her husband and preserve her birthright?
There's a lot to love about this book!! First of all, the cover! Then we have a marriage of convenience, historical setting, mythology, villain, hero, romance, humor, mystery and suspense. Selah needs to marry her cousin, Samuel, so she can keep her healing secret safe and not have to marry Nathan. We get a taste early on of the way Nathan treats her and why she's so desperate to do whatever she has to do to stay away from him. When she gets to Philadelphia, she's stunned to learn that Samuel has died, so when she sees the line of indentured servants being auctioned off, a plan starts to form. She saves Henry from a situation he doesn't want and as she gets to know him, realizes there's more to him than she originally thought.
I loved Selah and Henry! They got off to a rocky start and there were parts that made me laugh. Their situation is complicated and their romance is gradual. Selah is caring and dutiful. Henry was hard to figure out and I wasn't sure at times what he was doing. There are some great supporting characters and I enjoyed them all, whether I liked them or not. There are some twists and turns which kept me guessing the entire time. The reveal at the end makes their situation even more complicated than it was earlier and I wanted to start book 2 right away! (I really hope there will be one.)
The only negative I would say about this book is that the pacing is slow at times. Most of the time that didn't bother me but there were a few times when it did.
Content: Few minor swear words and sexual innuendo. I would definitely consider this clean!
My Rating=4 Stars
*I received a copy from the tour host for review. My opinion is 100% my own.*
2013 RWA Golden Heart© Finalist
2011 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award semifinalist
ABNA Publisher Weekly Reviewer
Set in the colony of Pennsylvania in 1730, this riveting novel begins as 18-year-old Selah Kilbrid runs into Quaker minister Nathan Crowley, a man who “labor[ed] under the delusion that [Selah] would soon be his wife” despite the fact that she was betrothed to a man on his way to America from Ireland. Nathan tells Selah that if she refuses him, he will have her “charged as a witch” because of her ability to heal the sick. To avoid Nathan’s plan to marry her the following Sunday, she leaves for Philadelphia to wait for the arrival of her betrothed and marry him before returning home. In Philadelphia, she discovers that her betrothed has died at sea. She then purchases Henry, an indentured servant, and convinces him to pose as her husband and help protect her from Nathan. As the story continues, the reader learns of Selah’s family history and the powers she possesses; Selah is half human, half goddess. It’s important that her secret stay safe, because if discovered, she could be killed. The characters are well developed and relatable; the reader empathizes with Selah and her plight. The fast-paced plot is exciting and keeps the reader guessing and in suspense. The end leaves room for a sequel, which, after such a tremendous beginning, would be anxiously awaited. A clear winner!
Kari Edgren did not dream of becoming a writer. Instead, she dreamed of everything else and was often made to stay inside during kindergarten recess to practice her letters. Despite doting parents and a decent school system, Ms. Edgren managed to make it through elementary school having completed only one book cover to cover – The Box Car Children, which she read approximately forty-seven times. Things improved during high school, but not until she read Gabrielle Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude in college, did she truly understand the power of a book.
Ms. Edgren aspires to be a Vulcan, a world-acclaimed opera singer, and two inches taller. She resides in the Pacific NW where she spends a great deal of time torturing her husband and children with strange food and random historical facts. Ms. Edgren hasn’t stopped dreaming, but has finally mastered her letters enough to put the stories on paper.
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