Of Fire and Lions by Mesu AndrewsWhat it is: a well-researched, vividly told biblical novel featuring the story of the prophet Daniel and his (fictional) wife, Belili.
What happens: Daniel faces fire and lions, and Belili, who survives captivity in Babylon for years alongside her husband and family, deals with secrets from her past when an army invades.
Don't miss: the author's note where she discusses her approach to creating biblical fiction and the characters in this book that were particularly challenging to write.
Far Side of the Sea by Kate BreslinStarring: Johanna, a French woman with her country's Army Intelligence in 1918, and British Lieutenant Colin Mabry, who's decoding messages in England after losing his hand and almost dying in battle.
What happens: Summoned to wartorn France, Colin finds Johanna desperate for help in finding her half-sister, Jewel, the woman who'd saved Colin's life, and whom he'd loved and thought had been killed.
For fans of: the author's Not By Sight (which features Colin's sister); World War I novels filled with intrigue, suspense, and romance.
A Tender Hope by Amanda CabotWhat it's about: Widowed midwife Thea Michener moves to Cimarron Creek, Texas, for a fresh start after her baby is stillborn. There, she meets a suspicious Texas Ranger who believes that her late husband was part of the murderous gang that killed his brother, and that Thea might be a member, too.
Series alert: This engaging 3rd entry in the Cimarron Creek trilogy is fine for newcomers; fans of the series will especially enjoy seeing familiar characters from A Stolen Heart and A Borrowed Dream.
The Secrets of Paper and Ink by Lindsay HarrelStarring: counselor and abuse survivor Sophia Barrett, who moves to Cornwall, England seeking a change; and Ginny Rose, Sophia's new boss, who's an American in Cornwall running a bookstore that she co-owns with her husband...who's just left her.
What happens: Sophia finds Victorian-era letters from a woman who was in love with her upper-class friend and tries to find out more about them with help from Ginny and Ginny's brother-in-law.
For fans of: charming stories of friendship and healing; stories set in bookshops; novels that combine the past and the present.
A Lady in Disguise by Sandra ByrdStarring: Gillian Young, the principal costume designer at the Drury Lane Theatre Royal in 1880s London, whose policeman father recently died in strange circumstances.
What happens: The police say her father was crooked, but Gillian disagrees and wonders if he was murdered. Meanwhile, she meets Viscount Thomas Lockwood, who seems nice, but can she trust him?
Try this next: Joanna Davidson Politano's Lady Jayne Disappears, another Gothic Christian romance set in Victorian times, which should please fans of this 3rd book in the Daughters of Hampshire series.
The Daughter's Walk: A Novel by Jane KirkpatrickWhat happens: In 1896, in order to win money from the fashion industry, two women attempt to walk 3,500 miles alone from Spokane to New York City wearing new clothing that doesn't require corsets -- and it changes to course of their lives forever.
Based on a true story: This atmospheric novel depicts Helga Estby and her 18-year-old daughter Clara's walk to save their family farm.
Read this next: For a more lighthearted look at women's rights a few years later, try Robin Lee Hatcher's Catching Katie.
Falling for You by Becky WadeStarring: fashion model Willow Bradford, who's taking a temporary break to run her family's small inn; her ex-boyfriend, NFL quarterback Corbin Stewart, who's home after a career-ending injury; and Corbin's niece, 12-year-old Charlotte Dixon, who's obsessed with the disappearance of her great-aunt decades earlier.
What happens: Charlotte corrals both Willow and Corbin to help her investigate, which brings them closer to each other, and puts them in danger.
Series alert: Falling for You is the charming 2nd entry in the Bradford Sisters series; the 3rd, Sweet on You, came out last month.
A Tailor-Made Bride by Karen WitemeyerStarring: Coventry, Texas, dressmaker Hannah Richards, who feels her work follows God's pattern of bringing beauty to the world, and livery owner Jericho Tucker, who sees fashion as nothing more than vanity.
What happens: Hannah and Jericho combine forces to play matchmaker for Jericho's sister and discover that love works miracles great and small.
Who it's for: Karen Witemeyer's sweet and funny debut is a delightful historical romance sure to please fans of authors like Deanne Gist and Robin Lee Hatcher.
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