Cover Image: A Heart Adrift

A Heart Adrift

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A Heart Adrift by Laura Frantz is a delightful historical novel. Set in Virginia in the 1700s, I loved the author’s ability to tell the story with such cultural vividness, both in setting and diction. This novel tells of a second chance at love but there are obstacles and scandals that stand in the way. This book is perfect for readers of historical romantic fiction. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher with no obligations. These opinions are entirely my own.
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Laura Frantz never ceases to amaze with her prose and obvious care to historical accuracy. A Heard Adrift is a second chance romance beautifully done.
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A Heart Adrift by talented wordsmith Laura Franz is a fabulous historical romance novel. Set in 1709’s colonial Virginia, this is the story of Esmee and Henri. I became invested in these characters and their story through the author’s exquisite writing style. The Christian message is beautifully woven throughout this entire book without it becoming overbearing.

This novel is just a beautiful, well crafted tale that is rich in history, culture, and even chocolate! I devoured the words and wanted more. There were twists, surprises, life lessons, and heartwarming scenes. I gleaned bits of history and knowledge about colonial life. Novels that teach me are among my favorites, this one included. It gets a 5 star rating. I highly recommend this book. A copy was provided by Net Galley, but this is my honest opinion.
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I have been a fan of Laura Frantz's since her very first book, and I have to say each book she writes feels fresh and it is always a joy to learn of a new one that will be released! I know that I will enjoy whatever she writes, and 'A Heart Adrift' was no different. I really, really enjoyed the premise, loved the main characters, believed in the romance (which is important!) and overall spent a very happy day immersing myself into the world Ms. Franz created. This is an excellent book and comes highly recommended! If you love second chance romances the way I do, I know you will not want to put this book down! Also, make sure you have chocolate nearby, because you will want to eat some...
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“How did one let go of the past and risk love again?”

Laura Frantz never fails to deliver an emotional, profound historical tale fortified with unique characters, as her latest novel, “A Heart Adrift,” attests. Colonial life in York, Virginia at the beginning of the French and Indian War proves to be a seminal time period, with many apt parallels to current events. Frantz deftly captures the social climate of the time and how multiple factors contributed to both public sentiment and political strategy, without ever sounding like a textbook. Because it seems that the vast majority of Colonial American fiction is set during or after the Revolutionary War, it is an interesting variation for the colonies to still belong to Britain and to be fighting against the French. This offers a new perspective, as well as insight into how the War for Independence came about. 

Unconventional women are a hallmark of Laura Frantz’s fiction, and “A Heart Adrift” features Esmée Shaw, a chocolatier who has resigned herself to a life of spinsterhood after the man she loved walked out of her life a decade ago. A successful businesswoman, she seeks out the less fortunate to offer what she can rather than joining in the high society that her sister Eliza so enjoys, but both prove to be more intrepid than they seem. Eliza, in particular, demonstrates fascinating character development. Captain Henri Lennox, a privateer who may be the colonial government’s greatest asset, is a steadfast character whose role is more traditional, but he and the other main male figures in the story demonstrate the results of the social structure. 

With a somber tone throughout much of the narrative, “A Heart Adrift” underscores the fact that no one is shielded from life’s hardships and heartaches, regardless of status. While fiction often provides an escape from the less pleasant aspects of life, there is so much value in works such as this one that address the suffering and those who have been blessed with the gifts to help. The Lord will always show up and put the right people in our lives at the right time. As Esmée reflects, “The only certainty about life was its uncertainty. Only God stayed steadfast. Only the Almighty could walk her through life’s many changes. And when she felt overwhelmed, like now, she simply had to look back to see how faithful God had been, did she not? The heartaches and closed doors of the past had made the present more beloved.” None of the trials that we face today are new. The smallpox outbreak, the glimpses into the inhumanity yet widespread acceptance of the slave trade, and the encroaching war in “A Heart Adrift” all have their direct parallels to today’s headlines. The lighthouse in the novel seems to serve as a beacon for not only Chesapeake Bay and colonial Virginia, but also for contemporary readers who may feel as if their own hearts are adrift. Coming home to the One who loves us, the true Light of the World, is the only way that we can truly live with our hearts firmly anchored amidst life’s storms.   

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a review. All opinions are my own.
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A Heart Adrift: A Novel by Laura Frantz 

Set in 1755, before a war with France and in Colonial Virginia. The heroine, Esmée Shaw lives in York and works at her family's chocolate shop. After suffering from a broken relationship for 10 years, at 28, she has resigned herself to a life alone. But then unexpectedly, the love of her life, Captain Henri Lenox, returns from his time at sea. He is ready to settle down on his island and be a homebody. 

But the pain or their parting and the awkwardness of their reconnection is difficult to get past. There are a lot of ups and downs for this couple. The maturity they see in themselves and one another as their friendship once again grows is a huge theme. They still love one another, but neither knows how to (or if they should) rekindle their romance. 

In the midst of tragedy, a reassignment to sea, and bold actions, somehow they find their way. They both have a dream to take care of a lighthouse on an island outside York. Many times this dream seems unreachable. 

This book is a sweet romance and very clean. There is nothing inappropriate or uncomfortable. It is Christian and has Scripture and themes of light in the darkness woven through. It is a second chance romance, but the characters are older and more mature, so their relationship is as well. 

There are references for slavery, being in 1755 British America. But the main characters speak about the injustice and cruelty of this sin and some work to end it. (We know that it will not be ended in over 100 years after this time period, so keep that in mind if you read it.)  There are some tragic things that happen in this book that may be triggers for some, like the death of a spouse and children. 

This was my first Laura Frantz book and overall, I really enjoyed the story and got invested into the characters. Her writing is incredible. I listened to the audiobook on Scribd. The narrator was pretty good, but not my favorite. This book would definitely be a reread someday and I'd probably even buy the physical copy. 

*Thank you to Revell for  copy of this book to review. All opinions are my own. 

#NetGalley #NetGalleyReader #NetGalleyReviewer
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Laura Frantz’s A Heart Adrift is a beautifully written historical romance guaranteed to tug at the heartstrings.

In 1755, the gathering clouds of war were fast approaching over York, Virginia. There was great uncertainty in the air yet chocolatier Esmée Shaw found herself fighting a battle of a completely different nature. A decade ago, Esmée had loved and lost the only man who had ever managed to get under her skin and now at the age of twenty-eight, she has resigned herself to a lonely future. Esmée is fully aware that she will never love another man again and instead vows to use all of her time, energies and efforts into more worthwhile causes. However, little does Esmée realise that a face from the past is going to return and turn her whole world upside down all over again…

After a lengthy absence, Captain Henri Lennox has returned back to port. In the last ten years, he had been haunted by regrets and tormented by a love that simply could not be. Returning back to Chesapeake Bay, Henri had hoped to fulfill a promise he had made to his beloved, but having been tasked with a dangerous mission, his future looks uncertain. Having only just been reunited with Esmée, will fate tear them asunder for a second time? Or will past wounds at long last be healed which will enable Esmée and Henri to let bygones be bygones and forge forward into the future…together.

Keep a box of tissues handy because Laura Frantz’s A Heart Adrift is an emotional, dramatic and poignant tale of redemption, renewal and healing that will bring a tear to the eye. Laura Frantz writes with style, sensitivity and warmth and she draws readers into her story from the very first page and keeps them hooked until the very end. Her characters are nuanced, mature and incredibly real and readers will be with them every step of the way cheering them on to their happy ever after.

A treat for historical romance fans, Laura Frantz’s A Heart Adrift is sure to delight!
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Set along the eastern seaboard, this latest historical by Laura Frantz is a slight step away her frontier stories. With only mentions of the war raging in the wilds, Frantz focuses instead upon a heart’s longing and the undercurrents of war from the viewpoint of a nearly-spinster shop owner in York, Virginia. Distance truly makes the heart grow fonder for Esmee Shaw as she awaits the return of a sea captain who she’s fallen in love with for the second time—or never really fell out of love with on the first go-around. With Frantz’s flare for elegant prose, she sets a large part of the story on an island in a newly-built lighthouse—such a dreamy setting—and readers even experience a hurricane from that vantage point while human dangers lurk as well. I love the title, so very apropos. The only thing I wished more for in this particular story was more of the hero’s point of view while he was at sea. Otherwise, your heart too will set sail on this romantic tale.
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A sweet and beautiful story of love and perseverance. I fell completely in love with the characters and settings from page one. The smell of fresh chocolate, the salty wind and the beautiful dresses just captivated my senses and I just wanted to keep reading and reading. The writing is lyrical and deep, and it makes you feel so many emotions. Highly recommed.
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First sentence: With his back to the coastal win, Henri Lennox settled his arms around Esmee Shaw, guiding her soft, pale hands with his tanned, callused fingers as they let the long silken line out. The pear-shaped kite caught on a gust, tugging at the string till it threatened to snap.

Laura Frantz's newest historical romance is set in Colonial Virginia. The prologue is set circa 1745--our lovers, Henri Lennox and Esmee Shaw, are madly in love. But their love is not to be--something comes between them--the sea. Ten years later (1755) the couple may just get a second chance at love. 

I enjoyed this one. I have long been a fan of Laura Frantz's novels. Her historical novels always make me giddy. This one is no exception. I would say it isn't your traditional (or traditional paced) novel. And that's true enough. Their story is their own. 

This one isn't focused on the courtship or the early days of love (falling in love). This is a story of a couple who has been apart for ten years, who find themselves reflecting on the past relationship after they have several accidental meetings in town. She begins thinking of him; he begins thinking of her. 

It isn't only a romance. Readers are immersed in the community meeting half a dozen or so characters. (Including her father, her sister, her brother-in-law, etc.) The setting is unique. Part of it is set on an island off the coast of Virginia. 

I would say this one has a LOT of kissing and quite a surprising bit of unchaperoned time.
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This was a beautiful story-very romantic and unforgettable. This book should come with a warning that readers will want to eat chocolate while reading this. :)
Laura is one of my favorite authors and her books never disappoint.
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I adore historical fiction, and this is such an interesting premise. I recommend because of the story itself, writing style, and its ability to transport you into a different world/time period.
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Laura Frantz is brilliant at writing historical romantic fiction. She pays such close attention to detail and provides the reader with a lovely picture of whatever historical setting she's presenting, without sacrificing any of the love story. 

In A Heart Adrift, I got a slight Persuasion vibe--which, is my favorite Austen novel. There's a second-chance romance trope, here, with two characters that have aged ten years and both have grown into better people. The difference between this and Persuasion is a beautiful one--There is no animosity between the two main characters. 

The story is rich with amazing setting descriptions and lovely characters that both grow and have amazing story arcs. 

It doesn't really need to be said that I'll read anything by this author.
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Esmée Shaw once loved Captain Henri Lennox, but that was ten years ago, and she hasn’t seen him since he broke her heart since he chose the sea over her and sailed away.  Now he’s back and she is trying to convince herself that he doesn’t matter anymore.  For his part, Captain Lennox is having a hard time recognizing the carefree girl he once loved in this woman who has known loss and disappointment.  Can they find each other again even as life in colonial Williamsburg and York, Virginia, teeters on the brink of war?

I really enjoyed this book.  It was so rich with historical detail and feelings that felt realistic—mixed as they were with uncertainty and complication.  Each protagonist is older, wiser, and shows a different aspect of how the colony is changing and evolving with them.  I was impressed at just how much of everyday life of that place and time was explained through the narrative, but in such a natural way that it wasn’t distracting.  I would be interested to know how much of the events were based on historical people and events.  The end did seem a bit rushed and I didn’t agree with all the theology, but those were small complaints in the grand scheme of the excellent book that was a pleasure to read!

I received this book in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley and the publisher
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Highly recommended! Well thought out and very well executed.Thank you for the opportunity to review this story.
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I’m learning that when you read a Laura Frantz novel, you are signing up for an experience. You know how some books feel like they play out like movies? A Frantz novel bypasses a movie. It’s a whole mini-series. From the first page to the final word, readers feel like they’ve genuinely endured life with these characters. Time has passed. Lives have altered. Love has bloomed.

How?! How does she pack that much into one story? I’m amazed and grateful.

Esmée and Henri are just magic together. They gave me all of the Captain Wentworth and Anne vibes, and Persuasion is my favorite Austen novel so I was immediately invested. But the love story–as wonderful as it is–is just the backbone of this tale. It’s fleshed out with compelling characters and a plot that flows steady from start to finish.

Fans of historical romances will adore this book because it offers all of the right things: a tender and lovely romance against the impeccable backdrop of a thriving historical community. Once again, Frantz has hit it out of the park in my opinion. Do not miss this book!

I received a complimentary copy of this novel from the publisher. All expressed opinions belong to me.
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This story is as beautiful as its cover! I can always count on this author to transport me to another era, with historical details that bring to life the characters and setting. I love learning about periods of time that aren't as common in the fiction genres I read, and the perfect balance is struck between history, plot, and characters. The pace of the book isn't swift, but that never bothers me when I'm savoring each page. I love a character-driven romance, and the dormant relationship between Esmee and Henri slowly unfolds as they find new footing with each other. They are both easy to admire, from Esmee's charitable endeavors with the local poorhouse to Henri's loyalty to his crew and country. The pace of the book picks up as they become entwined in each other's lives again, and I loved the way they began to give their romance another chance. There is plenty happening in their lives and community to drive the plot forward, and I was engaged the entire time I was reading. Highly recommend to fans of historical romance!

Disclosure statement: A complimentary copy of this book was provided from a tour group, publisher, publicist, or author, including NetGalley, OR was borrowed from the library, including OverDrive, OR borrowed from Kindle Unlimited, OR purchased. A review was not required and all views and opinions expressed are unbiased and my own.
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A Heart Adrift
A Novel
by Laura Frantz
Pub Date 04 Jan 2022 | Archive Date 12 Feb 2022
 Christian  |  Historical Fiction  |  Romance

I am reviewing a copy of A Heart Adrift through Revell and Netgalley:

The year is 1755 and the threat of war with France looms over colonial York, Virginia. Chocolatier Esmée Shaw is fighting her own battle of the heart. Having reached her twenty-eighth birthday, she is reconciled to life alone after a decade-old failed love affair from which she's never quite recovered. But she longs to find something worthwhile to do with her.

After a lengthy absence Captain Henri Lennox has returned to port .  He is intent on on completing the lighthouse in the dangerous Chesapeake Bay, a dream he once shared with Esmée. But when the colonial government asks him to lead a secret naval expedition against the French, his future is plunged into uncertainty.

Will a war, and a series of regrets keep Captain Henri and Esmee a part or on completing the lighthouse in the dangerous Chesapeake Bay, a dream he once shared with Esmée. But when the colonial government asks him to lead a secret naval expedition against the French, his future is plunged into uncertainty.

I give A Heart A Drift five out of five stars!

Happy Reading!
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Laura Frantz just has a way with words and it definitely shows in this beautifully written book. I really liked Esmee's strength and her determination to do something worthwhile with her life. I loved the faith thread that was shown throughout the story as well as the historical details. There were some slow parts for me but overall I really enjoyed this story.

**I received a complimentarty copy of this book from Netgalley. All opinions expressed are my own.**
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With A Heart Adrift, Laura Frantz delivers another epic historical romance in the colonial days of America — this time with rich themes and a second chance romance.

The romantic relationship is paced perfectly, with the reader getting to know the hearts and the history of Esmée and Henri along the way. From a bittersweet reuniting to a tentative restored friendship, they find their way back to each other amongst social gatherings and providential meetings. I enjoyed the way memories of their young romance were scattered through their story, showing how the vibrancy of their youth was seasoned with maturity — in both behavior and choices.

Quote from the book: "There stood Captain Henri Lennox...
Henri’s confidence in Esmée is admirable and one of the (many) reasons to love him, as is his calm demeanor. He is deserving of the moniker hero in many ways, as his actions prove in the story. Esmée is a relatable heroine and her care for everyone around her, extending to her family, friends, and the recipients of her benevolence, makes her a worthy match for Henri and of steadfast character herself. Theirs is a love that has surpassed weathering and trials, both during their years apart and through the events of this novel. Faith is subtly woven as a natural part of their lives, as Frantz has proven with past stories, and this abiding hope in the Creator is a credit to their character and an integral part of their identity.

The coastal Virginia setting and maritime interests are very much active characters in the story. Frantz’s signature prose-like style paints an immersive setting and showcases fascinating aspects of history and tradition, with the addition of nautical imagery and verbiage that fascinated me (I learned some new words!). I was also intrigued with Esmée’s chocolatier role and the societal consumption of hot cocoa. In short, I recommend reading this book with a cup of cocoa or a nice chocolate dessert nearby.

Thank you to the publisher for the review copy. This is my honest review.
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