Monday, July 18, 2016

The Loyal Heart

The Loyal Heart
(A Lone Star Hero's Love Story)
Shelley Shepard Gray
(Harper Collins/Zondervan)
ISBN: 978-0310345398
July 2016/380 pages/$15.99

Robert came to Galveston to fulfill his promise to a dying man and look after his widow. He didn’t expect to find love in the unlikeliest of places.

Robert Truax, former Second Lieutenant and Confederate officer in the Civil War, made a promise to his comrade Phillip Markham. If anything happened to Phillip, Robert would look after his beloved wife, Miranda. She was his life, his world, his everything.

After the war, Robert is left to pick up the pieces and fulfill his pact. When he arrives at Miranda's home in Galveston, Texas, things are worse than he imagined. Phillip's name has been dragged through the mud, everyone in town believes him to be a traitor, and his widow is treated as an outcast. Even more disturbing is her emotional well-being. Miranda seems hopeless, lost, and so very alone.

Robert had thought his duty would be simple. He would help Miranda as quickly as possible in order to honor a promise. But the moment Robert laid eyes on her, his plans changed. He's mesmerized by her beauty and yearns to help her in any way he can.

He makes it his duty to protect Miranda, turn her reputation around, and to find some way to help her smile again. But it doesn't prove to be an easy task—Robert knows something about Phillip that could shake Miranda to the core and alter her view of the man she thought she knew so well.


Shelley Shepard Gray is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time HOLT Medallion winner. A native of Texas, she earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Colorado and taught school for ten years. She and her husband have two children and live in southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town's bike trail. Find out more about Shelley at


Many people know and love Shelley Shepard Gray's Amish novels but I am partial to her historical romance stories. Of course, the fact that this one is set in Texas just after the Civil War piqued my interest before I even started! Gray does not disappoint as she creates a tale teeming with complex characters, intrigue, and danger. Flashbacks to the war depict the bond formed by Robert and his fellow soldiers during their imprisonment in the final months of the war. Miranda's dire situation emphasizes the second-class status that women had in society without a man's protection. A satisfying start to a new series, The Loyal Heart captivated mine. I can't wait to see which of the soldiers Gray focuses on next.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a digital copy of this book free from Harper Collins Christian Publishing/Zondervan. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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