Cover Image: An Appalachian Summer

An Appalachian Summer

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An Appalachian Summer by Ann H. Gabhart is a pleasing historical, Christian novel.  I thought it was well-written with interesting characters.  Piper Danson is twenty years old and not ready to settle down.  She would like some adventure.  Piper hears Mary Breckinridge speak at a tea arranged by her Aunt Truda and immediately volunteers.  Piper loves the mountains with its natural beauty and even enjoys the hard work.  She learns a variety of new skills while making friends with her fellow couriers, the nurse midwives, patients, and the families that inhabit the area.  I enjoyed the beautiful descriptions of the Appalachian Mountains the quirky people who lived in them.  They residents do not take kindly to strangers especially governments types, but they love Mary Breckinridge and her workers. Piper is a woman finding her path in life.  She is also given a chance to take God into her heart and discover love.   Truda Danson was a delightful character.  She was a woman ahead of her time.  In today’s world, Truda would be running a large corporation.  There was only one man who captured her interest and Truda never heard from him again their quick encounter at her debut ball.  Jamie Russell has been Piper’s lifelong friend who never told her how he truly felt about her.  When the Russell family lost their fortune, they decamped to Danville.  Jamie finds his way to the mountains where he gathers information for articles he is writing for a paper.  Can romance bloom in the mountains?  Unfortunately, the course of true love is not a smooth one.  There are a variety of secondary characters who include the other couriers, nurse midwives, a hardworking doctor, and Jamie’s opposition.   I enjoyed reading An Appalachian Summer.  A story about strong women, faith, hope, and love.  An Appalachian Summer is a charming story that took me back in time among the people who live in the Appalachian Mountains.
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An Appalachian Summer is a historical novel set in 1933.  Piper Danson has returned home from college to find her father has informally arranged her marriage to a prominent young businessman, Braxton Crandall. However, Piper's heart is still with her childhood sweetheart, Jamie Russell.  After she goes to a presentation on the Frontier Nursing Service, she volunteers to be a courier for the group in the Appalachian Mountains for the summer.  The summer working in Appalachia, away from her family, changes her life.  When both Jamie and Braxton follow her to the mountains, things really get interesting!

I wanted to read this novel because the setting and subject matter were intriguing.  I rarely encounter historical novels set during the Depression years, and the Appalachian Mountains setting was especially appealing.

This is a lovely read about another time and place!  The historical details are lovingly rendered;  the author does such a good job of capturing mountain life in the 1930's.  Piper works closely with nurse midwives and watches (and helps with) some childbirths.  She encounters sweet children from hardscrabble backgrounds.  She also experiences life on a farm for the first time - milking cows, taking care of horses, tending to chickens.  There are a few instances of the treatment of animals in this mountain community that were hard to read, although they seem realistic for the time and place. 

Piper is a brave, daring young woman who is willing to step out of her comfort zone to learn how other people live;  she truly is motivated by helping them and making a difference in their lives.  I loved her sweet lifelong love of Jamie, and also liked that her other suitor, Braxton, is a decent person and likable in his own right.

There is an enjoyable secondary storyline about Piper's aunt Truda, who is in her 40's and never married.  She lost touch with her first love, Jack, years ago, but he surprisingly crosses paths with the family in this novel.  I enjoyed reading their story as well.

An Appalachian Summer is an engrossing historical novel that gives a unique glimpse at another time and place.  I had not heard of the Frontier Nursing Service before, and learned it was a real organization, founded by Mary Breckenridge - just like in the novel.  Fans of historical fiction will enjoy this summer story.
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This was a light, enjoyable read, although it was a bit predictable.  The setting was researched well and was very realistic.
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Title: An Appalachian Summer



Author:  Ann H Gabhart



Ch: 43



Pg: 368  



Genre: Christian Historical fiction with a hint of romance 



Rating: 5 stars



Publisher: Revell



In depression era Louisville Piper Danson has just had her debut a few years later than most but she wants more from life than marrying that her father wants for her. After hearing Mary Breckinridge speak about the frontier nursing service she volunteers to be a courier for the service for the summer. Hoping that she can find herself and what she wants out of life.



Jamie Russell has been Pipers friend since childhood but since his family has lost everything in the crash he’s pretty much black balled from society.



I enjoyed this novel as I have ever novel I’ve read by Ann H Gabhart and I loved the Kentucky sitting and seeing my hometown during the depression at least in fiction. Since I was a child I’ve been fascinated by both the Frontier Nursing Service and the Packhorse librarians both founded in my home state of Kentucky. These women were indeed heroes.



My favorite character outside of Piper is Mrs. Miller one of the locals that works in the garden whom everyone refers to as a granny herself included. Her wisdom and knowledge and the fact that she reminds me of her my own granny who has the same last name.



An Appalachian Summer shows to groups of people and how they were handling the depression. Pipers father and family despite the crash were trying to hold to their way of life and wealth. Then there’s the mountain people who as a reader I don’t think they even realized that the country was in a depression.

Quite frankly as a reader i would spend time with the mountain people.



The theme that stood out to me the most in An Appalachian Summer was rich in spirit. And how that would be better for you in the long run.



An Appalachian Summer is a great historical fiction read that gives slight Christy vibes. I would recommend this book to fans of historical fiction who are looking for a summer read.



I received a copy of this book from the publisher a part of a blog tour. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone. 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
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I fell in love with Piper too. Set in the Appalachian mountains in the midst of the Great Depression, An Appalachian  Summer was a delightful read. Ann Gabhart wrote wonderful characters and avoided the stereotypes often used of the residents of the hills.  The Christian elements did not overwhelm the plot and were woven into the story in a natural manner.  Very worth the time to read.

Irecived a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley.. All opinions are my own.
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I adored Ann H Gabhart’s An Appalachian Summer. She is such a wonderful storyteller of the historical Appalachian Mountains. It was entertaining to see what it was like for the people during the Great Depression. I loved Piper right from the start and admired her courage and bravery throughout the book. I had no problem reading it all in one sitting.

I am giving An Appalachian Summer four and a half stars. I hope there will be more Appalachian stories releasing in the near future by Miss Gabhart. This one was great.

I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.
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I was delighted to have been chosen to read and review “An Appalachian Summer” by Ann H. Gabhart.  I have enjoyed Ms. Gabhart’s books in the past and this was no exception.  I love Ms. Gabhart’s characters and her choice of subject.  This is a great feel-good book and I am truly glad I read it.

This story begins in Louisville, Kentucky in 1933 where we meet Piper Danson.  Piper’s mother insists that Piper should have her debut as an older debutante.  Of course, Piper wants no part of this and the idea that her parents would be choosing her husband from the men to whom she is being presented.  Besides, she’s always loved Jamie, a childhood friend.  She finds this very distasteful as the rest of the country is suffering from the Great Depression and spending lavishly on a party she doesn’t even want is almost sinful.

Her Aunt Truda never married and is very happy in her singleness.   Truda introduces Piper to Mary Breckinridge, who began the Frontier Nursing Service in the poor counties of Kentucky in the Appalachian Mountains.  Piper is very interested in helping out with this service and is quickly snatched up to be a courier for the Service by Mrs. Breckinridge.  Working for the Frontier Nurses for the summer excites Piper from the beginning.  She wants adventure and she will finally be experiencing it.

This novel showed the abject poverty of eastern Kentucky during this time and gave a glimpse into the lives of the hill people, whose outlook on life was very different from anything Piper had ever experienced.  Piper must make a decision though, should she accept a marriage that would provide handsomely for her future, or risk all of that for love.
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Before we get to far into things lets just take a minute to appreciate the cover of this book.  I mean, just look at it.  The beautiful colors, the cabin in the back...doesn't it just make you want to escape to the mountains!

Well, that's pretty much what Piper Danson does.

Even in the midst of the depression Piper's parents insist on a debutante party.  Their goal is for her to marry a rich man, and not to worry, love will come later.  Piper is less than thrilled, but agrees to the party to make her mom happy.  The only man she can imagine marrying is Jamie, but his family has moved away after losing everything.  Braxton Crandall is the man her parents want her to marry.  He can provide for her the way she is used to.

The day after the party Piper meets Mary Breckenridge, the founder of the Frontier Nursing Service in  the Appalachian mountains.  Piper is able to convince her parents to let her volunteer over the summer.  Piper's adventure has just begun.  She is now spending her days caring for horses, milking cows and even assisting with the delivery of babies.  Her life is transformed.  How can she go back to the life her parents want for her.  Doesn't she deserve happiness?  Shouldn't she be free to marry her true love and not someone who her parents have picked out for her?

This is such an enjoyable read.  I loved that it touched on two completely different lifestyles during the depression.  I've always enjoyed reading stories about midwifery and books set in the Appalachian mountains.  This one was a bit different than previous reads and that made it all the more enjoyable.

***Thanks to Revell for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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Wonderful through and through:
I just loved this book! I was captivated from the very beginning and found the writing to be engaging and well paced.
I enjoyed learning about the Frontier Nursing Service and the meaningful and valuable work they did. It was lovely watching Piper blossom and grow as she escaped the confines of polite society and ventured into the Appalachian hills during the great depression. Piper and Jamie have been friends since childhood and have feelings for one another but everything seems to be coming between them getting together. It was wonderful seeing love triumph over security and worldly assets.
There were some hilarious moments but I also liked how the author wove the Christian message into the story and the reminder to look around us and behold the majesty of our Lord.
I received a free copy of this book and am voluntarily leaving a review. All opinions expressed are solely my own.
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To say I devoured this book would be an understatement! It was a pleasure to spend the summer following Piper, Truda and Jamie. A wonderful tale of a young girl who finds faith, adventure and love in the mountains as she spends the summer as a courier for a group of nurse midwives. I’m crossing my fingers that there’s a sequel on the way! Best read of the summer.
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#An Appalachian Summer#  by Ann Gabhart is a Christian historical fiction book.  Ann Gabhart  won the Selah award.  She has written Shaker novels and many other  novels. This story  takes place in  Louisville, Kentucky and the Appalachian Mountains. The time period is  the  harsh  economic  down  turn  in   1933.  The  economic  down turn was a difficult time   for people  .  Their money disappeared quickly in the stock market.   The  Frontier nurses were  making a huge difference in the Appalachian Mountains. . It is wonderful  the  nurses were  able to make  a difference for the people in the mountains. The  nurses  went to  the patient's  homes and cared for them in a personal way.  They went the extra mile for  those in need.  This book was very inspiring and   also  romantic.  I know  these tough economic times   made people discouraged and I am  sure  the nurses  were a light in the darkness.  The   settings and characters are so well described.  Thank you to  the author , publisher, netgalley for allowing me to read and review this book.  The opinions are my own.  I  look forward to sharing my review on facebook, netgalley, Amazon, Bookbub, my blog and with church staff.
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When I started reading this book, it felt familiar, like I was reconnecting with an old friend. I had to look to see what else I've read by Ann H Gabhart and saw that I'd read another book by her set in the Appalachians, but it was set in a later era.  An Appalachian Summer takes place during the early years of the Great Depression and includes some high society activities that would be out of place in the Appalachians. 

Piper Danson has just had her "coming out" debutante party.  Her aunt Truda, has asked that she and her family host a woman who is recruiting couriers for the frontier nurse-midwives.  Piper is wanting to do something different with her life, rather than making the expected match and settling down to a life of high society.  As a member of the Frontier Nurses Services, Piper is often horseback taking medications to outlying posts, sometimes doing upkeep on the buildings, sometimes cooking for the nurses, and even once escorting young boy back to his home after being in the hospital for chemical burns.

Jamie Russell has long been the love of Piper's life, but his family lost everything in the Crash of '29 and now feels he has nothing to offer Piper.  Piper's father wants her to marry Braxton Crandall, which is more of a business deal than a match of love. Jamie, Braxton, and Piper's Aunt Truda all end up at the same time at Wendover, the headquarters of the Frontier Nursing Services, and creates a bit of havoc for Piper.

Ann's research into the Frontier Nursing Services and the Appalachian area is impeccable. Her writing style is one of enjoyable familiarity which makes the characters believable and likable. The settings are what add spark to the plot.  The descriptions are the stuff of legends, which add so much color to the book. This is a five-star book, with two thumbs up, and a horse to take you back into the hills of Appalachia. 

Revell Publications and NetGalley.com provided the copy I read for this review.  All opinions expressed are my own.
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This is a sweet little love story -- a love story between two couples and a love story written to the mountains of Kentucky.
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I believe this is the first book I have read by this author.   I enjoyed this book which is set during the height of the Great Depression.  Piper Danson is the main character in the book and is a delightful character.   The book begins with Piper's debutante ball which she really didn't want to have but her parents (particularly her mom) insist that she has.   This event is supposed to be the setting where Piper finds her eventual husband.   Piper is not the type of person who enjoys dressing up or being around this type of event but her mom insists on it hoping Piper can find a rich prospect for a husband.   In the meantime, Piper's best friend, Jami, doesn't come to the party because his family lost all their money during the depression & his dad has passed away.   Piper's aunt, Truda, is somewhat of a rebel like Piper & has become a confidante for her.  Through an acquaintance of her aunt, Piper learns about the frontier nursing courier service who serve the Appalachian Mountains.   She becomes interested in doing that rather than staying at home & being coerced into marrying Braxton Crandall, a rich guy who her parents have picked out for her to marry.  Through her service, she learns a lot about herself and a lot about the ways of the people who call the Appalachian Mountains home.   

This was a great read & I definitely recommend it to anyone who is interested in historical fiction.   Thank you to the publisher,Revell, & Net Galley for an advanced copy of this book.   This is my honest and unbiased opinion of this book.
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This was a sweet and yet real story that I really enjoyed. The fact that it was based on a true story was a bonus.

Piper was a well brought up young woman who came of age during the Great Depression. Despite the situation in the world, her mother thought that she should have her debut and she introduced her to a likely match, Braxton. He sees her as an asset to himself, but not as a real person. That isn't enough for Piper, so she joins the Frontier Nursing Service as a courier. She joins the nurses on horseback under all sorts of conditions, in the rough frontier region of the Appalachians. She promises her mother she will only do this for a summer. It is an eye-opener for her, and she makes friends with the other couriers who come from very different backgrounds. Whilst she is doing this, thoughts of her childhood friend come to mind, constantly. She has some major decisions to make.

I loved this book. I loved Piper's aunty (another rebel, lol) and I loved Jamie too. Just what I needed to read, in these tumultuous times :)

5 stars from me.

Thank you to NetGalley and Revell.
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Ann Gabhart weaves a tale written as beautifully as the Appalachians are designed. Enjoy many moments within the mountains of the thirties as city women meet their highland counterparts through the Frontier Nurse Service. The terrain is rough and the people brave and resourceful. 

I received a complimentary copy of the book without obligation. This review is my opinion.
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I've read (and enjoyed) other books by this author. So I had high hopes going into reading this book. And the book definitely lived up to my expectations. I loved it.
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Piper has been forced to have her debut ball and to have Braxton, the man of her father's choice, as an escort, but now that it's over, she hears of a need for couriers for the Frontier Nursing service and decides to spend her summer in the Appalachian Mountains - and not to think about men or marriage at all. But Jamie, her childhood friend and the man she has grown to love, will insist on intruding on her thoughts, despite the lack of contact since his family was impoverished by the stock market crash. Nevertheless, she throws herself into her duties, learns many things she's never done before, and even helps her spinster aunt to reconnect with the one man she's ever contemplated marriage with. When a choice between the poor man of her heart and the rich man her father has selected for her becomes necessary, will she make the right choice?

This book made me wish to be back in such a time and place and able to do such a job - though I have to admit that I probably wouldn't have been much good at it. Nevertheless, the author drew me expertly into the setting and the characters' lives, and held my attention through to the satisfying end. An enjoyable, clean and well written book that also taught me a bit of history. An author I hope to read more by. Highly recommended.

Note that I received a complimentary copy of the book from NetGalley. I was not required to write a positive review and this is my considered opinion of the book.
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What a beautifully written inspirational romance.  You will love the Appalachian setting.  Great plot and character development.  If you are a fan of historical romance you will enjoy this book.  I received an advance ebook from the publisher and this is my unbiased review..
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I've enjoyed many of Gabhart's books, and this one was no exception.

It takes place during the height of the Great Depression  in 1933 Kentucky. It highlights the struggles families faced, particularly financially, along with the challenges of medical care.

Jamie was an easy character to connect with and root for. Characters were well crafted, including the secondary ones, who were well utilized.
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