What book should you read next? What words should you write next? Whether you're a reader, a writer, or both, you need look no further for ideas and pointers to help you make up your mind. You might even get your next book for free!

Sometimes I even give away my own novels. My Inspirational romances and devotionals are pictured below and are detailed on my Books page. You can always count on a trace of humor in my novels and nonfiction. Whether you're a teen or a woman mature in years, I think these stories will ring true.

Read on, and discover some of today's most appealing Inspirational novelists, their latest books, and their words of wisdom and imagination. Enjoy!

Monday, September 25, 2017

Ann Gabhart and Free Books!

Packed with history, bestselling author Ann H. Gabhart introduces readers to the fascinating and difficult life of frontier nursing in These Healing Hills.

Before we meet today's author, I want to announce that the winner of the e-copy of Any Man of Mine, by Carolyne Aarsen, is:


Congratulations! We'll get your book right out to you. I encourage readers to keep commenting and/or subscribe at right (above my list of books) in order to participate in future book give-aways! Subscribers are entered a second time when they comment.

And now let's chat with novelist Ann Gabhart, author of the historical These Healing Hills (Revell Books, September 2017).

Ann H. Gabhart has been called a storyteller, not a bad thing for someone who grew up dreaming of being a writer. She has penned many novels, including her popular Harmony Hill Shaker series as well as historical novels like Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, and Love Comes Home, a Selah Book of Year winner. She’s also known for her Heart of Hollyhill books and Hidden Springs Mysteries (as A.H. Gabhart.)

Ann, a lifelong Kentuckian, likes dropping her characters down into Kentucky historical events and settings. So it may be surprising that Ann’s thirty-third novel, These Healing Hills, is her first historical novel set in the Kentucky Appalachian Mountains.

She and her husband have three children and nine grandchildren and enjoy country life in Kentucky.

Please tell us one random thing we might not know about you.

I’m a rabid University of Kentucky basketball fan even though I didn’t attend UK. My kids did become UK students, but I was a fan long before that. I remember listening to the games on my little transistor radio when I was maybe twelve or thirteen. I still bleed blue. It’s a Kentucky thing!

Please tell us a bit more about the plot of These Healing Hills.

When the soldier Francine Howard planned to marry after WWII writes to tell her he’s in love with a woman in England, Francine is devastated and in need of a change. She seeks a fresh start in the Appalachian Mountains, training to be a nurse midwife for the Frontier Nursing Service.

In the mountains, Francine crosses paths with Ben Locke, a soldier still very much suffering from the horrors of war. With his future shrouded in as much mist as his beloved mountains, he’s at a loss when it comes to envisioning what’s next for his life.

While Francine and Ben are from completely different worlds and possess very different values, they both learn that things don’t always go according to plan. Will they be able to accept the healing power of love…and step forward toward tantalizing new possibilities?

What is it about Francine that will make your readers care about her?

Like many of us, Francine Howard feels awkward and unattractive at times, especially after her high school sweetheart breaks off their engagement because he’s fallen in love with a petite English beauty. But Francine has a can-do attitude and strong faith that help her find a new start with the Frontier Nursing Service. The Frontier Nurses share a saying that nobody comes there by accident and Fran begins to see the truth of that. I hope readers will enjoy sharing Fran’s adventures as she rides a horse up into the mountains to “catch babies” as a midwife nurse and discovers God’s plan for her life.

Aw, just her losing her fianc√© to a smaller, prettier woman makes her endearing. 

Have you attended any writers’ conferences in the past? What are your thoughts about their merits for up-and-coming, or even established, writers?

I’ve been to a few writers’ conferences, usually as an attendee, but occasionally as a presenter. I had been writing for years and had already published many books before attending my first conference so it was a different sort of experience for me than for a new writer.

However, I do often advise those new writers, who approach me for help in writing or publishing, to take advantage of how writing conferences can open doors for them. When I began writing long before anyone even imagined the internet, it was much more difficult to connect with other writers and those in the publishing companies. But now writers can attend conferences and brainstorm with other writers while getting valuable contacts when meeting editors and agents. That’s a good thing not only for the up-and-coming writers, but for writers like me. Nobody knows it all and we can always learn something new to inspire us on our creative journeys.

So true. Social media has made it easier to be in touch with other writers, even if one can't make it to conferences.

What is the last novel you read that you would recommend?

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Annie Barrows and Mary Ann Shaffer. I enjoyed the history in this story and the unique way it was told–all through letters and telegrams. Some of the scenes are tragic with the World War II history and others brought smiles as the letters brought the people of Guernsey to life in my reader’s eye.

I loved that book! I recommend it as well.

What are you working on now?

Next up after These Healing Hills is another historical novel, River to Redemption. My initial idea for the story was a true event that occurred in the small Kentucky town of Springfield after the 1833 cholera epidemic. The citizens of the town collected money to buy a slave’s freedom in gratitude for him single-handedly digging the graves and burying the fifty plus victims of the disease after most of the able-bodied citizens fled the town to escape the disease, leaving the sick and dead behind. My book, which is completely fictional except for that initial true historical fact, is how I imagine that might have come about.

That sounds like a fascinating story, Ann. I would definitely read that book.

Where else can readers find you online?

Readers can find out about my books and me at my website, www.annhgabhart.com. They can find my blogs there, sign up for my newsletter and find the links to social media. I love it when readers join the conversation at my Facebook author page where I have weekly features like Friday smiles, Shaker Wednesdays and the popular Sunday morning coming down.

The book can be purchased online via the following button:

Finally, what question would you like to ask my readers?

Have you ever had a disappointment in your plans that eventually led to something better for you? Have you noted God’s providential care in your life or your family’s?

Great question! Thank you, Ann, for visiting and telling us about yourself and your book. Readers, Ann has offered to give away a signed copy of her book. To enter, leave a comment and your email below in answer to Ann's question, above. "Please enter me" won't get you entered. Remember that subscribers are entered an additional time in each drawing. The drawing is done by email, so leave your email address, like so: trish[at]trishperry[dot]com. Many commenters are left out of the drawing because they forget to include a way for me to notify them of their win (their email).

Also, I'd love it if you'd connect with me on Facebook. Just click on my name at the right of today's post.

Remember, if you'd like information on additional new releases, check out Christian Book Heaven, a new email newsletter for Christian book deals in whatever genres you select. You can subscribe here: ChristianBookHeaven

Annoying legal disclaimer: drawings void where prohibited; open only to U.S. residents; the odds of winning depend upon the number of participants. See full disclaimer, as well as my Disclosure of Material Connection HERE


Lori said...

what a great interview. This sounds like a fascinating story. Because of a health deal that is not obvious just by looking at me a lot of young men would not either give me the time of day or would date but not have marriage in mind. Sigh. Actually it weeded out a lot of men for me. When my husband now came along and it didn't even faze him, he was so not concerned with it an said that it only endeared me more to him, I really had to talk with God about him. LOL But as it turned out my husband prayed long and hard about marrying me and the answer he kept getting from God was YES. So 32 years later and 2 adult children later, we are still drinking in God's grace and patience.
quilting dash lady at Comcast dot net

Katie Andersen said...

My "life plans" after college sure didn't follow my original plan. Many jobs that I hated that I thought I was going to love, I ended up a single parent. But now, it all lead me to where I am now, and I am so thankful! God is good! It sure has been a journey. I have a great husband, amazing children and a job I love now. katie07edgar(at)gmail(dot)com

CC said...

Appreciate the article and always greatly enjoy Ann's books, and it is nice to see another one set around the WWII time period but with a different focus and education re the Frontier Nursing Service. Things do frequently work out for the best, in the long run. Just one example for my husband and I was not getting a certain desired job, which also included a move. Career and location wound up better otherwise. So.... I am also a newsletter subscriber under my secondary email address which begins with dobe. Thanks! dixiedobie at yahoo dot com

Linda said...

There have been a lot of obstacles to my/our plans but God is always good and everything worked out according to His perfect plan.

Lori G said...

I have never read any of Ann's books, but this sounds very good. I love historical fiction and inspirational stories. What comes to mind for me was how hard I prayed for a little girl during my early years. Alas I have four sons. Well, of course it turns out, each one is a unique joy and pleasure (not without some struggles of course). But from those four boys I now have four wonderful daughter-in-laws, five granddaughters and two grandsons. I'd say things turned out beautifully.
lorigeorge at hotmail dot com

Gail H. said...

I would have made a couple of big mistakes with guys I dated thinking I was in love but God saved me by them not proposing. I've been married to my wonderful husband 36 yrs now.
I've been wanting to read this book ever since I first read about it..my father in law served in WWII, he passed away in April and I love reading stories about that time period.

Ann H Gabhart said...

Hi, Lori. So glad you found the right guy for you and 32 years together prove you made some right decisions there. Maybe that's because both of you were praying about those decisions. So glad the Lord blessed you with love. Thanks for sharing your story and for reading my interview.

Ann H Gabhart said...

A great job, amazing children and a job you love - all that sounds like the Lord led you to the right plan, Katie, even if it wasn't what you thought was going to happen. I'm sure you had moments or days where you wondered how things would work out. So glad they have worked out for you. Thanks for sharing that with us.

Ann H Gabhart said...

Thanks, CC, for coming over to read my interview and even more for reading my books. I do appreciate that. Glad the disappointment when your husband didn't get the desired job turned out better in the long run. Sometimes we forget to wait on the Lord to see what He plans for next.

Ann H Gabhart said...

As they say, Linda, God is good - All the time. We can't see into the future but if we keep walking with faith, blessings happen.

Ann H Gabhart said...

Lori G., I hope if you do get a chance to read one of my books, you'll enjoy the story. I like writing historical fiction and I like reading historical fiction too. A good novel can make a historical era come to life in a way history books can't.

I think it's normal for us to wish for a girl or a boy when we have more than one child. But sounds as if the Lord blessed you with four wonderful boys and I'm guessing you might be making up for lost time buying girlie things with those granddaughters. Thanks for sharing how things did definitely turn out beautifully for you.

Ann H Gabhart said...

Hi, Gail. Fun to read that you are excited about reading These Healing Hills. Somebody saying that always makes me smile.

36 years with the same guy certainly means you did marry the right fellow. If we pay attention sometimes we can feel the gentle nudging of the Lord or perhaps, like you, know it in hindsight.

skye said...

I can't wait to read this book! I love WWII novels and I'm excited to see the Kentucky connection. As for my disappointment, I have been suffering from chronic migraines for years. I've tried every doctor and remedy with no luck. A couple months ago I ended up on my knees begging God to take them away and to heal me. He didn't, which was a huge disappointment. But, God knew that my job was going to let me work from home so that I could manage my symptoms at home and still be productive. I have faith that I will be healed, in the meantime I try to remind myself that our faith grows stronger in the waiting.

Thank you for the beautiful stories!

Ann H Gabhart said...

Skye, I'm so sorry about your chronic migraines. I'm saying a prayer right now that the Lord will take the pain away. He is the Great Physician.

Thank you so much for reading my stories. I love to hear that you are excited about this new book, These Healing Hills.

Anonymous said...

Hello Trish. Thanks for hosting Ann. One of my favorite author and FB friend. I love her books and her blog. Ann, my oldest brother served in WW ii. I was 8 to 10 9n this time and we moved to Houston, TX. from a small rural town so my dad could work on the shipyard. Everyone did what they could to help back then, even the women. No bunch of protesting like now. I also had 2 brother-in-laws and cousins and friends from that small Texas town where we lived. So, I love to read books in that period. I would sure love to win your book. That WW ii brother is now 92. He just fell and broke his left side collarbone. Then he fell again the next day and broke 3 ribs his right side so praying its GOD's will to heal him. GOD has given our family so many miracles through the years. Both in my birth family and in my own since marrying and raising 4 children. So, sometimes what we think isn't always what is best for us. But GOD knows always. GOD bless both of you friends. Maxie ( mac262ATmeDOTcom )

Ann H Gabhart said...

Thanks for coming over and reading my interview here with Trish, Maxie. Always good to hear from you. Thank you for sharing about a time when as you said, everyone did what they could to help their country and the soldiers going off to warn. I pray your brother heals quickly, but it can be hard to bounce back after an injury when you have a few years added on. However, the Lord is in the healing business. Wishing you more miracles and much joy. So glad you made it through the hurricane safely.

Anonymous said...

One big disappointment was a rough road for a few years but life is more peaceful now. As many bad descisions as I have made, it is a miracle of God that I'm surviving problems I have had. lemonade050[ at ]hotmail[ dot ]com

Ann H Gabhart said...

So glad things are smoothing out for you, Lemonade50, and life is getting better. One thing sure no matter what road we're on, the Lord is always only a prayer away.

Cheryl Barker said...

I had a major disappointment when the first contract for my book Mother of the Bride fell through. (The publisher had to withdraw their offer because of a financial crisis.) Even though it was a blow, I continued to trust God and he brought about something even better. I ended up with a contract with BroadStreet Publishing, and they did an absolutely beautiful job with the book, fulfilling my vision for a beautiful hardcover book for mothers of the bride. (The first publisher was just going to be able to do a paperback.) God indeed brought about the best!

Trish Perry said...

Reading this list of entries is like reading a modern-day list of the faithful. Very inspiring! It certainly does help, when disappointment hits, to have experience to draw upon, knowing God knows best. It's a joy to hear how God brought you all to something better. We just never know what He has in mind for us.

Thanks, Ann, for visiting my site.



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