An #INSPYSundays Book Review | “A Promise for His Daughter” (Love Inspired) by Danielle Thorne

Posted Sunday, 1 May, 2022 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

#INSPYSundays banner made my Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By: Two years ago in (2020) Ms Thorne contacted me about her first Love Inspired novel (“His Daughter’s Prayer”) of which I reviewed and hosted her during @SatBookChat. Fast forward two years and I caught a notice about her review team which led me to asking her about joining the team. I was delighted to receive her second release with Love Inspired as I had fondly remembered the joy I had in reading her debut with the publisher. I was grateful I could join her review team knowing how much I love her writing instincts for telling Contemporary INSPY Romantic stories as much as the fact I love reading stories by this publisher for Romantic Suspense.

I received a complimentary copy of “A Promise for His Daughter” direct from the author Danielle Thorne in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. Per the badge at the end of this review, I am also a member of the author’s Review Team.

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A note about joining author review & street teams:

Over the years I’ve been a book blogger, I’ve had a few opportunities to join author review and/or street teams. However, this year, I am thankful to announce I recently joined both Danielle Thorne and Anna J. Stewart’s review teams. Each of them write for different imprints by Harlequin Books – Thorne writes for their INSPY Love Inspired and Stewart writes for their Heartwarming & Romantic Suspense imprints. Both of them consistently write the kind of stories I want to read as a Romance reader who likes gently told stories with uplifting endings – whilst at the same time, I also have a penchant for Suspense – INSPY or mainstream, which makes reading different imprints by this publisher such a joy.

Irregardless if I’m on an author’s review team or not, my opinions and thoughts remain as honest as if I were not on the team. I never know which story is going to resonate with me or which story might wrinkle my nose a bit – however, the joy for me is the moment of discovery and the hours spent inside the stories. I am overjoyed I am able to focus on both authors and celebrate their stories as I read them on Jorie Loves A Story. Perhaps you’ll find a new imprint to read yourself, or a singular series or one-off release which speaks to your own bookish heart.

This marks the first novel I’m reading for Ms Thorne’s review team and I was wicked happy it is her second release with Love Inspired. She left such a strong impression on me the first time I read her novel with Love Inspired – it left an ache to return into a similar setting and world, seeing where she would lead me and her characters next to discover a new happily ever after! Not to mention, this one also involves a child and sometimes those stories are extra special and sweet to read.

On why I enjoy reading stories by Danielle Thorne:

I appreciated the immediacy of connecting with Callie – you have such a strong scope of who she is and why she is meeting us at this junction of her life within the first few pages of His Daughter’s Prayer. I appreciate this smooth transition into Callie’s life and world because you don’t have to hunger after the details to help you fully feel connected to the heroine of the story and you can also identify with her motivations of relocating, re-identifying herself and pursuing a new path in a towne she knows intimately well. It was for that immediate reaction I had wherein I knew this could become expanded into a series. Interestingly enough, this was also brought up during our #SatBookChat discussion wherein this story was pitched to become a series and only time will see if that becomes a reality. I, for one, would love to continue living in this world Ms Thorne has created because it is a wholesome community with down to earth characters and the beauty of starting over and coming home.

As I read His Daughter’s Prayer, the story felt as if it had been with the author for a very long time – although having spoken to the author during #SatBookChat, I know the fuller truth of how quickly this story was knitted together and then published. It feels like a story meant to be told and one that was fully realised as it was been created which is a credit to Thorne. She has good instincts on how to write an INSPY Contemporary Romance in the same vein of my beloved Harlequin Heartwarming novelists – the story she’s created in this INSPY Rom is the kind of story you long after because it refreshes your spirit. I definitely hope this will lead to more Love Inspired INSPY Contemporaries or even Suspense by Ms Thorne – whether they are connected to Ragland or not, I’d be keen to read them!

With watery eyes and a full heart, I read the Author’s Note at the conclusion of the story and found myself with a keen bit of insight into why this story felt as real to me as it did! Ms Thorne tapped into a part of her own soul and heart and left it inside this novel. She put a lot of herself into the story and a lot of her personal wanderings into the aesthetic of what became the towne and setting. This went a long way towards feeling emotionally rooted into the storyline and wanting dearly to know they’d be a sequel due to how wonderfully enriching it was to read a story that has lived such a wonderful life in our hearts and imagination. This is an author to keep your eye on dear hearts, there are many wonderful stories yet to be read from Ms Thorne!

-quoted from my review of His Daughter’s Prayer

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An #INSPYSundays Book Review | “A Promise for His Daughter” (Love Inspired) by Danielle ThorneA Promise for His Daughter
Subtitle: His latest project has a two-year old surprise
by Danielle Thorne
Source: Author Review Team

His latest project has a two-year-old surprise

Fatherhood wasn’t what Bradley Ainsworth expected to find at Henny House. The run-down Victorian is his best shot at proving himself as a historic renovator, but the new owner has no interest in recreating the past. Claire Woodbury and her foster daughter, Emily, are focused on the future—until everyone learns that Emily is Bradley’s daughter. Does that future have room for him as a father…and more?

Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Sweet Romance, Contemporary Romance

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1335759269

Also by this author: Josette, His Daughter's Prayer

Published by Love INSPIRED

on 26th April, 2022

Format: Mass Market Paperback

Pages: 224

Published by: Love Inspired (@LoveInspiredBks)
an imprint of Harlequin Books (@HarlequinBooks)
which is now an imprint of HarperCollins Publishing (@HarperCollins)

Note on Formats: Happily Love Inspired novels have the same kind of flexibility as Harlequin Heartwarming wherein you can receive these print copies in Regular Print, Larger Print or True Large Print for those who are vision impaired and/or have low vision. I personally love the Larger Print editions for Harlequin Heartwarming, Love Inspired Contemporary Romance & Love Inspired Suspense as it is much kinder on eyes of a migraineur! Generally I receive Larger Print copies of Love Inspired and/or Harlequin Heartwarming novels – however, I do on occasion receive Regular Print which I can’t read whilst in the throes of a migraine or shortly after one but when I’m migraine-free I can soak back inside them; hence why having different sized fonts available is a lovely gesture by the publisher for readers like me.

Converse via: #INSPYbooks and/or #INSPY, #SweetRomance and #LoveInspired

as well as #ChristFic, #ChristianFiction, #ContemporaryRomance or #INSPYRomance

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More Inspy Romantic stories by Danielle Throne:

His Daughter’s Prayer (2020) | see also Review

Falling for the Coach (2022)

A Promise for His Daughter (2022)

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About Danielle Thorne

Danielle Thorne

Danielle Thorne writes from south of Atlanta, Georgia. She is the author of over fifteen historical and contemporary sweet romances. A graduate of BYU-Idaho, she has also published young adult non-fiction and worn an editor's cap. Her new release is a 2020 historical series set in the United States and follows the period of the American Revolution. Her first book with Harlequin's Love Inspired line will be out this summer.

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a note about receiving the book:

I had a lovely surprise tucked into A Promise for His Daughter – a bookmark from the author enscribed with “I believe in happily ever afters’ which is such a true statement! One of the blessings of reading Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense or Contemporary Romances as well as their Heartwarming imprint of stories is knowing you are going to have a fully realised world awaiting your visit with a wicked sweet ending to conclude your stay. Both imprints have a way of giving you a jolt of reality and real life but with the promise of hope, love, friendship and an ending which gives merit to the hours you’ve spent alongside the characters. My heart is always happy and my spirits always feel lifted. Which is why of course these have become my Romances of choice over the past six years as I get to have my fill of romance but with such a lot of lovely characters to rally behind, suitors to hope after and the promise of tomorrow by the time the story concludes.

I cannot think of a better way of reading a story than with a bookmark which champions and celebrates why I love to read these stories than the one Ms Thorne sent to me.

my review of a promise for his daughter:

The setting is what grabbed me first about this story – travelling along a road with such treasures as ivy and covered bridges – with the promise of a fresh start in a small towne and an inherited house which fixes the more immediate issues of stability and permanence of place. I felt pulled into this novel whilst driving alongside Claire as she made her way to a new beginning for her and her adopted daughter Emily. The irony of course is whom she discovers inside Miss Henny’s house and why that proved to be a complication for him. Claire was good-natured about the encounter but you could see her worrying brow increasing with each new moment spent in the house. Her initial impressions about her inherited house led me to fond memories of watching Baby Boom and part of me wondered if perhaps that was part of the inspiration behind the story; as an unexpected adoption of a young girl changed the course of a single working mother’s life when she purchased a house in Vermont. Of course the main difference here is that the daughter wasn’t a kinship adoption and the house was inherited not purchased but those are semantics, eh?!

Bradley on the other hand reminds me of another story I recently read wherein the script was flipped as it was the hero who was renovating a house and the heroine wanted to purchase it. Bradley had a lot of charm and presence, but the one thing he didn’t expect of course is the will of determination in Claire! I loved how she unsettled him – first by her inclination to turn Miss Henny’s house into her own home and secondly, by being a Mum. It was curious how that bit of information struck him as a more shocking surprise than her renovation plans for the house; felt to me like there was hidden history in his reaction. Almost as if he was emotionally disconnecting from his past in the moment of discovering Emily and simply had to remove himself before those emotions connected to memory.

I admit, when it comes to historic homes, I tend to side with Bradley about restoring them rather than modernising them! Homes have a soul and spirit about them – especially when their in the historic arena which is why I celebrate homeowners who find that soul and help bring it back to life rather than imprinting their own variation of modern on a house who doesn’t befit the modern era. Sometimes homes can speak to you – they have a personality and an essence that should be recognised and honoured; yet sometimes, I think people rush too quickly to take up residence in them without considering what is best for the house. Also, we have lost our sense of style in our modern designs – as I oft consider the older homes to have a more homey presence than newly built ones for that specific reason. Too much straight lines and open floor plans dissolve the uniqueness of the past and where builders used to carve in a special grace of design. I knew after their first conversation I wanted to see if Bradley could influence Claire to make a few changes to her plans in regards to the house as it would be an incredible marriage of modern and historic design if they could find a way to work together.

As an aside, Bradley had a lot of issues with his parents – which were quite classic in many regards, especially if your parents raise the bar too high on their expectations of how your life will play out vs allowing you to find your own way in the world and be satisfied with your choices. I had a feeling for Bradley he viewed his own level of success against the opinions of his parents. Which of course by anyone’s sensibility that is a path ill-travelled because there are certain people you cannot impress no matter what you do because their opinion is unchanged from the first moment you disappointed them. At least he had his cousin Donovan in his corner! I liked him at first sight – he was settled in his career but he understood Bradley wanted to do something that he was passionate about – which was one good thing about cousins, they support you even if your family doesn’t show their own support.

Anchoured inside their brewing troubles (as both Claire and Bradley surely needed help to untangle the present circumstances which keep colliding them together!) were the rock solid foundation of Bradley and Donovan’s Aunt Vi and Uncle Harold; absolute dear-hearts, truly! They listened and they understood that sometimes people need a bit of a nudge into the right direction and between their influence on their nephew, I felt it might encourage Bradley to embrace the past rather than continue to let it haunt his tomorrows. And, yet – right when you think he can sort himself out, he has the uncanny way of infuriating Claire! (and me, technically!) It is his whole attitude about his daughter. Although he isn’t the first to be surprised by fatherhood, I had the feeling for Bradley it cut harder than mere surprise and sort of re-assessed his own personal outlook on life. He was a man caught between the dreams of his past, the reality of his present and the uncertainty of his future. And, of course the drama therein is where Thorne was entreating us to traverse – to peel back the layers of his emotions and get to the heart of his character.

Mr Thu was the neighbour next door whom I felt was given the best lines in the story! He was the listening ear Claire needed most and the friend she did not expect to find either. He understood her situation better than she did herself but when it came time to count, he gave her the kind of advice a father would give a daughter and I knew that meant more to her in that moment than anything else. He also provided perspective and within that way, I felt Claire was finally able to see past what was worrying her mind the most to find the hope she had lost. Claire was a true friend in every regard, especially how she came into Emily’s life and how she was handling Bradley’s life shift as well. She was humble and kind but she was also sensitive to how all the changes were going to affect her in the long term. Your heart went out to her because of the fragility of our hearts and the honesty of how she was portrayed as someone who was caught in a circumstance they did not quite control.

For a slow-brewing romance what was more disheartening were the dramas unfolding behind the romance itself – especially when it concerned Bradley’s parents. Thorne did a wonderful job at showing how strict and reserved parents can become when they are blinded by their own influence on their children’s lives. I felt she handled that part of the story with as much grace as she could as a writer owning to the realism of what people have to contend with given similar circumstances. in the background of course is this lovely community – where neighbours and community members are the found family you never knew you were seeking but were thankful to have within your inner circle. It was also the kind of place you could start over and determine for yourself the kind of life you wanted to live and that was the best message of all.

on why i appreciate ms thorne’s inspy romantic styling:

Thorne is one of the authors I appreciate reading because she carries a thread of relatability through her stories and her vision of her characters’ lives. I appreciate the topics she broaches through her stories but also, rooting us in the real world through her perception of what her characters can live through as she tells their story. Yet is how she visually places you into the setting which grabs your eye the most – being well-travelled through the Southeast, I knew of the route Thorne took to place us into this small towne of Southern Georgia. She even graced the setting with small touches of personalised observations seen through Claire’s description of arriving into Kudzu Creek (not my favourite name of a towne!).

There is a lot to unpack in this Contemporary Romance – especially the timeline of when Dori had Emily and when Claire took over her guardianship which is an interesting twist in the novel when you consider who the father is to Emily. I felt Thorne was doing a great job leading us into the quagmire of unearthing the past which connected both the timeline of her story but also with the events connecting all the central characters together. It is an interesting history of course and as those connections come to surface for the reader, it was lovely to see the revelations which meant the most to the characters took a bit more time to become disclosed.

Thorne approached referencing the faith centering her characters lives in a very subtle way. Bradley mentioned it whilst talking to his cousin Donovan in regards to how he changed his life for the better and how his faith is important to him even more now than it was in the past. This subtle way of inclusion worked best for the plot as both Bradley and Claire were at the start of new beginnings for the trajectory of their lives. She needed to prove to herself she could be self-sufficient and raise a daughter whilst Bradley was trying to make a name for himself as a historic restorator of homes.

Small fly in the ointment:

Repetitive references to Bradley or Claire’s plans or long-term goals – which normally might not seem worth mentioning as an annoyance but even by the first quarter of the novel was read – I found the continuing mentioning of Bradley’s need for restoring the Henny House and Claire’s need to open a pottery studio a bit waxing on irritation. Mostly because I knew already how much both of them were hinging their bets against their future against the projects they both had attached to Henny House. They both knew the risks and they both wanted to take them but I just didn’t need to be re-informed of all that every other conversation in the story. Bradley tended to overshare that bit of information the most out of the two of them. I wasn’t sure if it was even necessary to continue to bring it up after both parties had met and said their opinions about how to proceed with restoration and the looming project of Henny House.

This dragged the pacing of the novel for me a bit in different places because I felt like I was walking through the same disclosures which were already made and settled. Blessedly it resolved itself to where we shifted forward in the context of the storyline where the repetitiveness erased itself.

Equality in Lit:

One of the threads of narrative I appreciate seeing in Contemporary Fiction is a healthy viewpoint about foster care and adoption; or even kinship adoption or grandparent adoption – as there are different routes of adoption a person can undertake. This story discusses a close friend who has legal guardianship of a child and that can also happen IRL as some people are godparents, guardians and/or the person someone wills the guardianship of their child; or they could officially adopt the child/ren lateron. Other times, there isn’t time for legality and it is a promise between two close friends and then, it becomes official through proper channels lateron. It is encouraging to see these kinds of stories explored and discussed especially as I am a Prospective Adoptive Mum in the future as I will be adopting children through foster care myself.

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This book review is courtesy
of the author: Danielle Thorne

Danielle Thorne Review Team badge created by Jorie in Canva.

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This lovely badge I’ve created to reflect the fact I am part of the Review Team for Danielle Thorne. As such, per my usual disclosures when I have a connection to an author – I approach each story I read by an author with fresh eyes and give my honest impressions of how a story sits with me as a reader. I treat each book as a ‘new experience’, whether I personally know the author OR whether I am reading a book by them for the first time or continuing to read their releases as they are available. In regards to being on an author’s review or street team – each story is uniquely told in of its own and my opinions and thoughts upon those stories are reflective of each experience I have with reading the stories I am given an opportunity to read.

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I look forward to reading your thoughts & commentary!
Especially if you read the book or were thinking you might be inclined to read it.
I appreciate hearing different points of view especially amongst
readers who gravitate towards the same stories to read.
Bookish conversations are always welcome!

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{SOURCES: Cover art of “A Promise for His Daughter” as well as the book synopsis, author biography, author photograph of Danielle Thorne and blog tour banner were all provided by Danielle Thorne and used with permission. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets embedded by codes provided by Twitter. Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: #RomanceTuesdays banner, Danielle Thorne Review Team badge and the Comment Box Banner.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2022.

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About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Sunday, 1 May, 2022 by jorielov in 21st Century, Adoption, Contemporary Romance, Equality In Literature, Family Drama, Foster Care, Indie Author, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Life Shift, Modern Day, Motherhood | Parenthood, Orphans & Guardians, Romance Fiction, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Southeastern USA

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