Wednesday, May 16, 2007

CFBA: Orchard of Hope by Ann Gabhart

Song Stuck on the Brain: Down in the Boondocks by Billy Joe Royal

This week, the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance is introducing



Ann Gabhart

(Revell March 1, 2007)


Nothing will be the same after the summer of 1964.

Drought has gripped the quiet Kentucky town of Hollyhill, and the town seems as if it is holding its breath--waiting. Jocie Brooke is nervous about starting high school. Her sister Tabitha is experiencing the weariness of waiting for a new baby. Her father David is feeling the timidity of those first steps toward true love. All of these pivotal steps in life are awaiting the Brooke family.

Into this cloud of tense anticipation, a black family from Chicago, the Hearndons move here to plant an orchard outside of town. Fresh off the Freedom Train, Myra Hearndon is sensitive to what the color of her skin may mean in a Southern town. Her family will have to contend with more than the dry ground and blazing sun as they try to create their ORCHARD OF HOPE.

Jocie finds herself befrending a boy that some townspeople shun. Due to unspoken racial lines in this southern town, the presence of these newcomers sparks a smoldering fire of unrest that will change Hollyhill..and Jocie...forever.

In this close-knit community, everything is about to change.

Let this riveting novel take you along to experience unexpected love, new life, and renewed faith amid life's trials.


Ann H. Gabhart has published a number of adult and young adult novels with several different publishers. The author of The Scent of Lilacs, Ann and her husband live a mile from where she was born in the Bluegrass region of Kentucky. She is active in her country church, and her husband sings bass in a southern gospel quartet.


“…The moment I sat down to read this novel, I knew I was in for a rollercoaster ride. … With words that flowed like poetry across the page, Ms. Gabhart created a work of art that deals beautifully with a difficult time in our nation’s history. … In the end, I stood up and cheered. … This is one book I will remember for a very long time.”
- Reviewed by Elizabeth Ludwig for Novel Reviews

“This is a novel that I will long remember. I genuinely cared what happened to the characters and wished the best for each of them. The book reads in an almost slow and hypnotic way, perfectly complementing the area and heat wave that lasts the duration – and yet it is a page turner. ……Armchair Interviews says: This is a novel you’ll want to tell friends about." - Reviewed by Jamie Driggers for Armchair Interviews (


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