To Follow Her Heart, by Rebecca DeMarino

book cover To Follow Her HeartPublisher’s Overview:

Duty and love are powerful forces. Only one has the power to make her life complete.

It is 1664 and Patience Terry is devastated to learn that Captain Jeremy Horton’s ship has been shipwrecked off the coast of Barbados. There were no survivors. She had hoped that Jeremy would someday give up the sea and settle down with her in Southold, Long Island.

Unaware his memorial service is being planned, Jeremy sails aboard a British warship with secret orders to attack New Amsterdam and claim it for the British Crown. When he makes his surprise return to Southold–and to an overjoyed Patience–it’s not quite the happily-ever-after his beloved had hoped for. 

My Take:

Patience Terry has long lived up to her name while waiting for Jeremy Horton. Her feelings are reciprocated, but Jeremy’s first love is the sea. After being shipwrecked, Jeremy realizes his seafaring days are over and wonders what God has planned for his future. He sees Patience in that future, but isn’t sure what he’ll be doing. Will he be part of the militia going against the Dutch, will he build ships, or will he be called away from Long Island?

To Follow Her Heart is the third book in The Southold Chronicles about one of the earliest English communities in the New World. Jeremy, Patience, their families and friends have been part of the series since the beginning, and Jeremy had been one of my favorite characters. He wore on me here, however, with his continued procrastination. Although he was now bound to the land, it didn’t seem that he was ready to stay in one place. He was one of the older men in the community, but at times had less maturity than his nephews. The previous book, To Capture Her Heart, had ended unpredictably and, although I hoped for it, it didn’t look like I’d get a more favorable resolution this time around.

The characters in the book are Puritan, but not of the austere kind with which we’re familiar. One of the women owns a hat shop, selling hats decorated with beads provided by an Indian friend. Readers get to experience the highs and lows of life in Southold, from large Thanksgiving feasts to death from smallpox. DeMarino also describes the political events of the time, such as the English takeover of the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam in September 1664.

Although I was frustrated with Jeremy throughout the book, I found To Follow Her Heart was a page turner which was difficult to put down. I loved that the series was inspired by the family of Barnabas Horton, one of Southold’s founders and also the author’s ancestor. The Southold Chronicles (which should be read in order) are wrapped up with a bittersweet epilogue set in 1880, and it was with sadness that I said goodbye to this group of pioneers.

Thank you to Revell for my complimentary copy of To Follow Her Heart, which I received in exchange for my honest review.

Have you read To Follow Her Heart? Do you plan to read it? Let me know your thoughts.

Excerpt

Publisher: Revell (a division of Baker Publishing)

Publication Date: 19 July 2016

Page Count: 352

Read more on:   Rebecca DeMarino’s Website   Revell’s Website

Purchase on:   Amazon   Barnes & Noble   Books-a-million   Christianbook.com

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