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To Win Her Favor (A Belle Meade Plantation Novel Book 2) by [Tamera Alexander]
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To Win Her Favor (A Belle Meade Plantation Novel Book 2) Kindle Edition

4.7 out of 5 stars 561 ratings

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From the Publisher

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Alexander continues her ode to the magnificent Belle Meade Plantation, using it to illustrate questions of race, faith, and loyalty that continue to haunt today. Richly drawn secondary characters add depth, humor, and a sobering perspective on how Reconstruction affected racial relations, social status, and economic fortunes. Fans will appreciate, and applaud the smooth merging of social commentary and a sweet love story."
~ Publishers Weekly

"No insta-love here! Readers get to experience the growing attraction between the headstrong and determined Maggie and the swoon-worthy Cullen. The deeply drawn characters move the story along at a steady pace - even Bucket, the dog, and Bourbon Belle, the mare, will win readers over." 
- RT Book Reviews, 4 stars!
     
"As with To Whisper Her Name, I LOVED To Win Her Favor. I have been eagerly awaiting the release of this and it has exceeded my expectations. Tamera Alexander flawlessly weaves history, racism, horse racing, and in-depth character development. Even the 'minor' characters were fleshed out, and I am overjoyed to know that one of them will have her chance for love in Alexander's upcoming July 2015 novella To Mend a Dream. I also love the cameos Alexander includes from previous books. Tamera Alexander gets better with every book and I cannot wait for her next one!"
~ Katie from Goodreads
  
"In To Win Her Favor, Tamera Alexander exposes the ugliness of the bigotry and prejudice prevalent in the post-Civil War South, especially toward freedmen and immigrants. She counters with the unfailing love of God that gently reprimands, lovingly restores, and gives extravagant gifts. Alexander's writing carries the story effortlessly, creating a landscape rich in the scents and sights of the Reconstruction era . . .  Through the difficulties overcome and the refining of their characters, Cullen and Maggie learn to trust the Lord with their future, as the Lord redeems their pasts through their struggles. The story's complexity provides abundant storylines for future books with these characters.
~ Christian Library Journal, Diane Carver Sekeres
  
"Marriage of convenience stories are my favorite and To Win Her Heart by Tamera Alexander is no exception. The challenges and dynamics of the unlikely relationship between a southern lady and handsome Irishman sizzle with tension and passion..."
Jody Hedlund, bestselling author of Love Unexpected
   
 "Tamera Alexander is one of my favorite authors, so I expect a lot from her novels. To Win Her Favor is captivating beyond expectation! This novel has everything readers are looking for--rich characterization, page-turning intrigue, a heartwarming romance charged with tension, and more!"  
~ Cindy Woodsmall, NYT bestselling author
    
"I have rarely read a more wonderful book than To Win Her Favor by Tamera Alexander. Rich with historical detail and fully developed characters, this novel held me spellbound until the last page. If you read one historical novel this year, make it To Win Her Favor."
~ Colleen Coble, USA Today bestselling author 
   
"Tamera Alexander has done it again! To Win Her Favor is peopled with fascinating, richly-drawn characters that drew me into their very hearts and souls. Maggie and Cullen's story captures the drama and tragedy of the post-Civil War era, but more importantly, it captures the humanity of those who triumphed after a dark time in our nation's history to rebuild lives marked by joy and anchored by faith."
~Deborah Raney, author of The Face of the Earth 
   

From the Inside Flap

"Strong characters, a sense of the times and the themes of love, friendship and the importance of loyalty and determination make To Win Her Favor a triumph."
~ Library Journal starred review
   
Against the backdrop of one of the most turbulent times in American history, the post-Civil War era, one woman struggles against prejudice, injustice and suffocating conventions of the 19th century to pursue her dream. Tamera Alexander's To Win Her Favor, the second stand-alone novel in the Belle Meade Plantation series, is already receiving high praise. 
   
Q&A with the author:
   
Q: What made you choose to set your new novel, To Win Her Favor, during the tumultuous years following the Civil War?
Born and raised in the South (Atlanta, GA), I've long held a strong connection with Southern history. And what historical event defines the South as much as the War Between the States? Family homes became headquarters for troops, churches and schoolrooms became hospitals for the wounded, and the hills thick with pine and the meadows lush with grass became hallowed ground with the blood of the dead and dying. The years of Reconstruction forged a steel in the hearts of surviving men and women for a new life, a new country. I find myself fascinated by what they accomplished in the face of overwhelming odds. And remember, ultimately, so much good came from this time of suffering in our history too. So many advances in medicine, botany, mental health and social justice, to name a few.

Q: What is the central message of To Win Her Favor?
That through hope and determination even the greatest obstacles can be overcome. The story explores questions of race, faith and loyalty and offers perspective on how Reconstruction affected racial relations, social status and economic fortunes in the post-war South -- and a passionate love story is at its very heart.

Q. Many Kentucky Derby winners today trace their lineage back to thoroughbreds at Belle Meade Plantation in the 1860s and 70s. Describe the horse racing culture of the 19th century and what part it plays in your story.

Through three generations of the Harding/Jackson family at Belle Meade, Belle Meade Plantation became the preeminent stud farm and nursery for the horse racing industry. Belle Meade's thoroughbred legacy is at the center of the history of American horse racing and owes its heritage to a line of successful studs, starting with Epsilon in 1844, then following in the 1860s with Jack Malone, Vandal, Bonnie Scotland, Great Tom, Enquirer and Luke Blackburn. You're familiar with the 1973 Triple Crown Winner Secretariat and perhaps the 2012 Kentucky Derby winner I'll Have Another. These modern-day winners and so many more trace their lineage back to Belle Meade. Horse racing in the 19th century was the king of sports, but it was an industry dominated by males. White men owned the blood horses, and young slave boys were the ones who jockeyed the magnificent thoroughbreds. Women and girls weren't allowed -- at least, not until Margaret Linden in To Win Her Favor.

 Q: Some of the scenarios in the book paint a gritty picture of this unsettled time. Why do you think it's important we not gloss over this chapter in American history?
The old adage comes to mind, "Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it." Human history is filled with atrocities: race against race, religion against religion, and greed-lust that annihilates anyone in its path. No matter the era, be it the 19th century or the 21st, human nature hasn't changed. We still struggle with the same sins and temptations, and we have a responsibility to remember our past. So many of the racial issues people dealt with following the Civil War are still prevalent in parts of our country (and world) today, and glossing over -- or rewriting history -- not only denies the truth, but it cheapens the price so many paid for the freedoms we do have.

Q: As a southerner yourself, how do you embrace the culture of the south while still acknowledging its difficult place in the American story?

Very simply, the only way to embrace the Southern culture (or any culture) is by knowing how that culture was formed and by acknowledging all parts of its history, even the ugly and shameful parts. Dig deep enough into any culture's history (you won't have to dig far), and you'll find deceit, greed, lust, murder, envy, and strife. Because at the core of who we are, we are all the same: sinners in need of a Savior, no matter the color of one's skin. So to downplay the racial injustices perpetrated by the people of that time -- toward people of every race, color and creed -- is to risk making those same reprehensible choices again.
  
Q: You've said Kizzy is your favorite character in this book; tell us about her and why she captured your heart. 
  
I fell in love with Kizzy and would love to write her continuing story some day. Kizzy represents so much of the bold hope, tenacity, and raw courage that was present in the generation of freedmen children coming of age after the Civil War. In many ways, it was a brave new world for them. Yet, in others, the world hadn't changed nearly enough, and the war was still being fought. I adore Kizzy's approach to life and how she sees herself. And how she sees others.


Q: What kind of impact do you hope To Win Her Favor will have on readers?

The same kind of impact it had on me . . . that it will cause readers to search their own motives and hearts in relation to prejudice and that they'll have the courage to follow God's lead in taking whatever steps are necessary toward healing the divide.
  
To connect with Tamera Alexander, visit tameraalexander.com, become a fan on Facebook (tamera.alexander) or follow her on Twitter (@tameraalexander) or Pinterest (tameraauthor). 

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00L0SEH1O
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Zondervan (May 12, 2015)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ May 12, 2015
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 1852 KB
  • Simultaneous device usage ‏ : ‎ Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 370 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 561 ratings

About the author

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One of today's most popular writers of inspirational historical romance, Tamera Alexander writes novels that USA Today calls "a full on HIT!" (about A Lasting Impression) and Publisher's Weekly describes her writing as "so vivid, one can almost hear the music resonating off of the page" (about A Note Yet Unsung).

Tamera is an author and inspirational speaker whose novels have garnered or been short-listed for numerous awards, including her induction into the Christy Award Hall of Fame for Excellence in Christian Fiction, the RITA Award, the Carol Award, Bookseller’s Best Award, National Reader's Choice Award, Library Journal’s Top Christian Fiction, the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence, the Golden Quill Award, and the HOLT Medallion, among others.

Her books have been translated into multiple languages including Dutch, German, Polish, Romanian, Slovakian, and Portuguese.

Tamera loves living in Nashville with her husband, not far from the Southern mansions that serve as the backdrop for many of her critically-acclaimed novels.

For more about Tamera's books, visit www.TameraAlexander.com

(Photo credit: Mandy Whitley Photography)

Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
561 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on October 15, 2019
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Top reviews from other countries

V. M. Whittard
4.0 out of 5 stars Historical novel.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 15, 2017
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Mys M
4.0 out of 5 stars Romance, Racism, & Race Horses
Reviewed in Canada on July 18, 2017
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Glenda Fowlow
5.0 out of 5 stars Clear Winner
Reviewed in Canada on July 28, 2015
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Brookelly
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
Reviewed in Australia on March 2, 2018
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Joanna F.
3.0 out of 5 stars Fictional but harshly realistic 19th Century Nashville
Reviewed in France on March 15, 2016
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3.0 out of 5 stars Fictional but harshly realistic 19th Century Nashville
Reviewed in France on March 16, 2016
I'd personally recommend readers to be 14+ before reading this book. Some of the content is particularly violent.

[Racism and xenophobia; tree hangings; anecdotes of tortured children, of rape, of murder; and some explicit sex scenes between a (healthy and balanced!) loving married couple.]

HOWEVER that being said, "To Win Her Favor" does sensibilise to some of the ways men, women, and children were treated in a time not so long ago (and perhaps help us recognise some of the new ways we dehumanise people today!). It also showcases some edifying relationships of friendship, love, family, and marriage one can relate to and learn from.
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