Love’s Pure Light by Susanne Dietze, Shannon McNear, Deborah Raney, Janine Rosche – Book Review

Posted September 7, 2020 by Phyllis Helton in Book Reviews /

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Love’s Pure Light by Susanne Dietze, Shannon McNear, Deborah Raney, Janine Rosche – Book Review

Love's Pure Light

by Susanne Dietze, Shannon McNear, Deborah Raney, Janine Rosche

Published by Barbour Books
Publication Date August 6, 2020
Genres: Christian Fiction, Christmas, Clean Romance, Historical Fiction
Setting: Massachusetts, Missouri Gilded Age – US – 1875 – 1900, World War I Era - 1914 - 1918, World War II Era - 1939 - 1946, Contemporary
Main Character Ages: 18-24, 25-34
Written for: Adults
Pages: 371


Be transported to unique time periods as you follow a treasured family nativity set through four generations of the Shepherd family.

While Shepherds Watch Are Keeping by Susanne Dietze
Massachusetts, 1899
This Christmas, Pastor Seth Shepherd has little to offer his flock of congregants in their time of need until Jessalyn Grant, a mysterious newcomer, comes to his aid.

The Wise Guy and the Star by Shannon McNear
Charleston, South Carolina, to Kansas City, Missouri, 1919
While journeying by train, Stella Shepherd befriends war veteran Nat Wise. She helps him find renewed faith in God, but could he also be the answer to the wanderings of her own heart?

On Angel Wings by Janine Rosche
Kansas City, Missouri, 1945
Elodie Wise plans a fundraising ball with the help of her friend Benjamin Gabriel. But can she look past the swanky Hollywood headliner to see the man who truly loves her?

Making Room at the Inn by Deborah Raney
Cape Girardeau, Missouri, Present Day
Benjie Gabriel thinks the chef’s position she’s just taken at an award-winning bed and breakfast is temporary—just a stepping stone. The B&B’s owner, Trevor Keye, thinks the same. Will five months be long enough for them to figure out that what they’ve each been longing for, praying for, is right beneath their noses?

I received a complimentary copy of this book. This gift did not influence my opinion or review.

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Each of the stories in this Christmas Anthology is delightful! I have been familiar with the works of all the authors except Susanne Dietze and was glad for the opportunity to get to know and enjoy her writing as well.

Some time had passed between the time I read the synopsis and when I started reading it. So I was caught off guard partway into the second story when I realized Stella was Seth and Jessy’s daughter. (They are in the first story.) It wasn’t until midway through the third story that I realized what you probably just read in the synopsis, that these stories are linked through family and a nativity set which was passed down from generation to generation.

One of the things I especially enjoyed in all the stories was the way one of the characters in each related to a different piece of the nativity than the others did. And it often tied in to their name or something about the person (or both!) in a clever way. For example, Seth Shepherd, the pastor, related to the shepherd. Many of the main character names appeared to be selected very carefully, first and last names in some cases. I love when authors do this!!

I enjoyed every one of the stories in this collection and can not pick a favorite. Each was special in its own way. There were some especially poignant spiritual messages in two that stood out to me.

In While Shepherds Watch are Keeping by Susanne Dietze, I was very moved by Seth’s realization that he had been seeking the Lord for what He could provide in his time of need more than simply seeking the Lord. I find that I can trust the Lord most days but have times when I do just what Seth did. It was a powerful reminder.

The Wise Guy and the Star by Shannon McNear had a powerful message about how we often mistake pride for humility. And that it is pride to think our sin is too big for God to forgive. Wow!

It is a treat to have Christmas stories point to the real reason we celebrate the season, Jesus. If you enjoy romance that focuses on Jesus first, you are bound to love the stories in Love’s Pure Light!

Shannon's The Wise Guy and the Star Pinterest Board

(click here to go directly to the board on Pinterest)
  • Releases September 1, 2020!
  • Loves Pure Light: A Nativity Piece (23x32 Framed Art) - Deseret Book
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  • Inside Union Station, Charleston SC ::: Back entrance of Union Station after Storm of 1911.  (Captain Le Cato Collection)
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  • ...y qué querés con esta inseguridad que hay. (The Pickpockets, four young men, circa 1910)
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Susanne's While Shepherd's Watch Are Keeping Pinterest Board

(click here to go directly to the board on Pinterest)
  • Love's Pure Light by Susanne Dietze, Shannon McNear, Deborah Raney and Janine Rosche
  • Tom Brittney (Outlander, Call the Midwife) will join the cast of Grantchester as Reverend Will Davenport, crime-solving partner to Robson Green’s Geordie Keating.
  • 1899 calendar - Google Search
  • what was it like in woolen textile mill 1900 - Google Search
  • what was it like in woolen textile mill 1900 - Google Search
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  • Twas the Night: Before Christmas, who doesn't read this every year? (past, present and future)
  • Harper's Weekly, Christmas 1899, 10 Cents a Copy - NYPL Digital Collections
  • victoriansolstice: “  1900 jacket and vest. Look at the bias and the stunning fit on that vest ”
  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Lawrence, Massachusetts - Wikipedia
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  • Heaven's Majesty Nativities, Statues and Wall Crosses

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About Deborah Raney

DEBORAH RANEY dreamed of writing a book since the summer she read Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House books and discovered that a Kansas farm girl could, indeed, grow up to be a writer. Her 30-plus books have garnered multiple industry awards including the RITA® Award, HOLT Medallion, National Readers’ Choice Award, Carol Award, and have three times been Christy Award finalists. Her first novel, A Vow to Cherish, shed light on the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease and inspired the highly acclaimed World Wide Pictures film of the same title. A Vow to Cherishcontinues to be a tool for Alzheimer’s families and caregivers. Deborah is on faculty for several national writers’ conferences and serveson the executive board of the 2600-member American Christian Fiction Writers organization. She and her husband, Ken Raney, traded small-town life in Kansas—the setting of many of Deb’s novels—for life in the city of Wichita. They often travel to teach at writers conferences across the country and to visit their four children and a growing brood of grandchildren who all live much too far away.

About Janine Rosche

Prone to wander, Janine Rosche finds as much comfort on the open road as she does at home. This longing to chase adventure, behold splendor, and experience redemption is woven into her Madison River Romance series. When she isn’t writing or traveling, she teaches family life education courses to college students, takes too many pictures of her sleeping dogs, and embarrasses her four children and husband with boy band serenades.

About Shannon McNear

After more than two decades in the South, Shannon McNear now makes her home on the windy northern plains with her husband, four of their eight children, two German Shepherds, three cats, several chickens, and a noisy flock of guinea fowl. She serves in worship and youth ministry, and has been writing novel-length fiction since age 15. Her first novella, Defending Truth, from A Pioneer Christmas Collection, was a 2014 RITA® nominee. She’s a member of ACFW and RWA and is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency. When not sewing, researching, or leaking story from her fingertips, she enjoys being outdoors, basking in the beauty of the Dakota prairies.

About Susanne Dietze

Susanne Dietze began writing love stories in high school, casting her friends in the starring roles. Today, she’s an award-winning, RWA RITA®-nominated author who’s seen her work on the ECPA, Amazon, and Publisher’s Weekly Bestseller Lists for Inspirational Fiction. Married to a pastor and the mom of two, Susanne lives in California and enjoys fancy-schmancy tea parties, genealogy, the beach, and curling up on the couch with a costume drama.

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