The bond between mothers and daughters
Christian novels with strong female leads
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When the Meadow Blooms
Ann H. Gabhart
Weakened by tuberculosis, Rose Meadows checks herself into a sanitorium for care and leaves her two daughters at an orphanage. She promises to return for them, but two years later they are still waiting. Rose’s brother-in-law, Dirk, badly scarred in a long-ago fire, leads a reclusive life at his farm called Meadowland. But when he finds out about Rose and her girls, he feels obligated to give his late brother’s family a place to live. At first he avoids them, reluctant to get emotionally involved, but these new housemates work their way into his heart. Rose’s quiet faith, along with the countless prayers of others over the years, slowly begin to mend the invisible scars Dirk carries inside.
Where the Last Rose Blooms
Alice runs a flower shop in present-day New Orleans with the aunt who raised her after her mother’s disappearance during Hurricane Katrina. She discovers some old embroidery in the attic of her former home and realizes the flower designs contain coded messages. The dual narrative reverts to 1861 Charleston where Clara, a secret abolitionist and Union spy, helps a slave named Rose locate her 9-year-old daughter who was sold to another family. The embroidery plays a pivotal role. This story, highlighting the bond between mothers and daughters, includes scenes depicting the horrors of slavery but also reminds us that through fires and floods, God is always with us. Third book in a series but reads as a standalone.
The Sweet Life
Suzanne Woods Fisher
When her fiancé cancels the wedding, Dawn Dixon invites her mother, Marnie, on her already-paid-for honeymoon on Cape Cod. Marnie, a recent widow and breast cancer survivor, impulsively buys a dilapidated ice cream shop on Main Street. Dawn reluctantly agrees to stay and help her mother get started, but they encounter opposition from the local historical society, putting the new venture—and Marnie’s life savings—in jeopardy. Free-spirited Marnie and tightly wound Dawn learn new things about themselves and each other as they live and work together. They also get much-needed help from new friends and old. Some characters lean toward caricature, but overall, it’s a fun, feel-good story.
The Master Craftsman
Professional treasure hunter Nick Laine is dying of cancer. He sends his estranged daughter, Ava, in his place on one last hunt for a missing Fabergé egg. She and her mom travel to St. Petersburg, Russia, to retrace the steps of Karl Fabergé, the famous jeweler commissioned by the House of Romanov—the last Imperial family to rule before the Russian revolution. Alternating between 1917 and present day, both narratives include intrigue and fascinating historical details, but the action intensifies near the end of the present-day story as Ava closes in on the mystery egg while being threatened by a Russian mobster. The chase is fun but the real—and poignant—point to the story is this: Nothing is more valuable than family.
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