The Heart's Charge

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Pub Date 01 Jun 2021 | Archive Date 11 Aug 2021
Bethany House, Bethany House Publishers

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Description

Members of Hanger's Horsemen, Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks arrive in Llano County, Texas, to deliver a steed, never expecting they'd deliver a baby as well. Left with an infant to care for, they head to a nearby foundling home, where Mark encounters the woman he'd nearly married a decade ago.

After failing at love, Katherine Palmer dedicated her life to caring for children, teaming up with Eliza Southerland to start Harmony House. From mixed ancestry, illegitimate, and female, Eliza understands the pain of not fitting society's mold. Yet those are the very attributes that lead her to minister to outcast children. The taciturn Jonah intrigues her with his courage and kindness, but there are secrets behind his eyes--ghosts from wars past and others still being waged.

However, when a handful of urchin children from the area go missing, a pair of Horsemen are exactly what the women need. Working together to find the children, will these two couples find love as well?

Members of Hanger's Horsemen, Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks arrive in Llano County, Texas, to deliver a steed, never expecting they'd deliver a baby as well. Left with an infant to care for, they...


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ISBN 9780764232084
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Featured Reviews

'The Almighty had his hands on this. He assigned the Horsemen this duty, and I ain't about to argue with him. Are you?'

Karen Witemeyer kicked off this series last year with 'At Love's Command' and I was blown away by how wonderful it was! It made my top reads of the year for 2020. I absolutely loved it so much and was on pins and needles until the second book in the series came out. Now it's here and I am once again just amazed at her talent.

This is Mark and Jonah's story. As they are headed home after a horse sale, they travel by a cabin where a lone woman is in the throes of childbirth. From there, they must head to a foundling home where Mark is shocked to see the woman who once turned down a marriage proposal. She and another woman run the home. Soon after, they discover some serious crimes are being committed, and being two members of Hanger's Horsemen, cannot turn aside without trying to catch the culprits.

'He'd battled raiding Indians, survived being shot by rustlers, and outsmarted deadly outlaws as part of an elite military squad. He could lay siege to a woman's heart and wear down her resistance.'

Jonah also finds himself faced with a wonderful woman who truly acts as if she can't stand the sight of him. Eliza knows better than to trust a man and has determined she will remain on her own the rest of her life. But she hasn't figured on the absolute integrity of this man. Jonah's character was just done so incredibly well. And let me tell you, his horse, Augustus, was one of the true heroes of this story! I loved that horse so much! Well done!

Karen Witemeyer has always been a favorite of mine, but this series is my total favorite of her work! I am proud to have her books on my shelves. There is so much to love about this book. It was captivating! Highly recommended.

My thanks to Bethany House Publishers for a copy of this book via Net Galley. I was not required to leave a positive review. The opinion here is expressly my own.

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I will read anything Karen Witemeyer writes, because she does her craft so well. In her newest offering of the Hanger's Horsemen, she writes of a love lost and found again; of unexpected love; of greed, abuse, and exploitation of children; and of heroes and damsels in distress, or maybe heroic damsels and heroes in distress. The characters in The Heart's Charge are strong, noble, and loving--and those are the female characters.

This is book two of the Hanger's Horsemen series, and after this book there is one more horseman to marry off. I can't wait to read his story.

Mark and Jonah are traveling home after delivering a horse that Matthew had sold when they come across a woman in the throes of labor. She was also in the depths of grief and not wanting to continue living after delivering the baby. When Jonah comes back with the doctor, he helps the mother and then gets Mark and Jonah to take the baby to a foundling home not far away. At the foundling home, Mark meets his past in the person of Kate Palmer--the love of his teens whom he has never forgotten--and both of them meet their future. When Jonah and Eliza deliver the baby to a wet nurse, a child asks Jonah to help find the kiddy-snatchers. The era of this book is close to the turn of the twentieth century, and a recent stock market crash had the country in a depression. Many children were homeless and got around the country riding in box cars on trains. These are this children who were targeted for exploitation and were the prey of the kiddy-snatchers, because they wouldn't be missed by anyone.

Karen has kept the plot moving at a steady pace to keep the reader involved. Often I am tempted to skip ahead to the end of the book and see how things end up, but this time I read straight through and was entirely satisfied at the conclusion of the story. Karen consistently writes five star books and this one is no exception.

Five Stars, Two Thumbs Up, and white knight on a gallant steed to rescue your day.

Bethany House and NetGalley.com provided the copy I read for this review. All opinions expressed are solely my own.

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Karen Witemeyer has done it again! The Heart’s Charge is enthralling and inspirational, and contains the trademark strong heroines, swoonworthy heroes, and thrilling story of a Witemeyer novel. This story kept me absolutely riveted.

Keeping up with four equal points of view and two primary romances may sound a bit daunting, but Witemeyer balances the stories perfectly. I did struggle a little bit at first with the two corrresponding yet separate storylines, but I quickly became so absorbed that the switches between stories flowed naturally and satisfyingly. Mark and Jonah are two unique Witemeyer heroes, and I fell in love with both of them. Katherine and Eliza are wonderful heroines; I especially enjoyed Eliza’s story arc. I really enjoyed getting to see all four Horsemen together again, as their dynamic is perfectly written. They make me smile, laugh, and reflect.

The Heart’s Charge is a wonderful addition to Witemeyer’s Hanger’s Horsemen series. Readers will love the suspense, characters, and endless inspiring moments. I absolutely can’t wait for Luke’s story! 4.5/5 stars

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Ooh, oooh, ooh!

I've been longing for the next Hanger's Horsemen book for a while now and finally, it's here!

I loved getting to see two main couples' points of view. It really made The Heart's Charge unique and gave si much more to the story, however, there were many backstory things they were spoken of and they were only used as back story and I would have liked to see a bit of reconciliation in at least one of them though I understood why one was impossible with the choices of the father.

My only wish was that the whole of the Horsemen would have been together more.

References to prostitution, a word associated with a prostituted child, and other like mentions, And a few other things so I would recommend 18+ read this.

I voluntarily received and reviewed a complimentary e/copy of this book which I received from the author/publisher. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

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I love this series. After the Civil War a group of soldiers that fought together organized their own group, Hanger's Horsemen," to help people that needed it in the rowdy land in Texas that they decided to settle in. Two of the horsemen are traveling back to their "headquarters" when they come across a grieving widow who is giving birth all alone in a line shack. Mark, one of the two, delivers the baby but the woman refuses to keep it. Knowing the baby needs care and not knowing what to do with it, he takes it with him and they seek out a foundling home nearby. When he takes the baby there, the woman who answers the door is the girl that refused to marry him before the war back East. They are both shocked to see each other. Mark and his partner get involved with helping the two ladies running the foundling home with all the things that need fixing there. There is a lot of suspense involved and it's just overall a very interesting story. The orphans at the home and the homeless kids roaming the area are all in need of love and these ladies are dedicated to trying to help them. But kids are coming up missing and so Hanger's Horsemen take on the case and start looking for the outlaws that are stealing kids.

I have voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book that I received from NetGalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.

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Karen Witemeyer writes enjoyable books with great characters. The Hangers Horseman series has been excellent and leaves the reader waiting eagerly for the next book. Due to the nature of the series, these books can be read as standalone novels.

This story has two concurrent stories; meaning two heroes and two heroines. This worked well in terms of the character and story development. The book moved at a good pace and didn't lack action.

I got this book free in exchange for an honest review. This is one I would gladly pay for as I would for the author's other books. They just have that little something extra that add them to my top reads list and I regularly recommend them to others.

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I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It had a lot of action from the first moment to the last. I enjoy when independent females who don't have room for a man in their lives are flummoxed by a man who doesn't fit any of their categories. There was a ton of fun banter between Eliza and Jonah. The writing was witty. There were many poignant moments like when Mark gave a blessing over baby Sarah or when Jonah talked to Abner about his identity. There were a bunch of rascally boys who had formed a family and worked to protect each other. There were moments of epic bravery and sacrifice as well as ingenuity. It was an all around great book. I can't wait to read the next one in the series.

Thank you to Bethany House for providing me with a free copy of this book. I loved it! All opinions are my own.

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I was a little worried about there being four protagonists in this story, particularly about whether they would all feel like well-developed characters, but I should have known better. While I would have loved to have two separate books so each character could have more "page time," that's simply a reflection of how much I liked the characters and would have loved to spend even more time with them. With four characters, their backstory, the current plot, and a lot of serious topics (kidnapping, depression/suicidal thoughts, and slavery among them), it takes skillful writing to balance it all--and Karen Witemeyer totally pulled it off. The book flows really well, the characters are beautifully written and totally lovable, the themes and messages thought-provoking but not overbearing, and the whole book was just a delight to read.
4.5 stars.
I read an ARC provided by the publisher via #NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

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The Heart's Charge by Karen Witemeyer returns to the Hanger Horseman foursome. This time, readers see the story of Mark and Jonah. Readers learn about their past and what strengthens them today. This story was captivating and interesting. I did enjoy the idea of a Black Cowboy and Black teacher. Most Christian fiction does not feature Black characters, but I love seeing them written in the story as a main couple. I loved learning about their hurt and watching them learn to trust others. In this time period of history, it was hard to be their skin color. The opposite couple's story had a backstory, but both characters were heroic and brave also. One of my favorite things about Witemeyer's writing is that she writes stories with such heart. I usually gravite away from Western stories because they are so boring to me. Not enough action. But not with Witemeyer. She brings such heart, bravery, and sometimes humor to her stories. Overall, The Heart's Charge by Karen Witemeyer is a must read for fans of stories with heroes with a touch of romance.

I received a complimentary copy of The Heart's Charge by Karen Witemeyer from Bethany House Publishers, but the opinions stated are all my own.

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Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks are on their way back to the ranch when they come upon a woman who is about to give birth. She's gone loco with grief from the death of her husband. All she wants to do is die. She makes Mark promise to take care of the baby. After the baby is born they take her to Harmony House. An orphanage for children. What does Mark find but his sweetheart from years ago, Katherine Palmer. Jonah meets up with the other lady running Harmony House, Eliza Southerland. While there they come upon a boy who tells them there are people snatching children. This is the story of finding love, lost love, and rescuing children. Also, it brought out some of the injustices against former slaves and what they had to endure.

This is book two in the Hanger's Horseman series. It's not necessary to read book one to understand this book. But book one is great also. So why not read it first. For light hearted romance to a little bit of mystery this is the book for you.

I received this book from Bethany House Publishing via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated in any way.

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The Heart’s Charge by Karen Witemeyer is the second book in the Hanger’s Horsemen series, though it can be read independently.

The Horsemen are 4 ex cavalry soldiers who set out to right wrongs and bring justice to those that can’t defend themselves. Two of them, the charming Mark and strong, silent Jonah, accidentely end up in job that none of them saw coming. When they need to find a home for a newborn baby, they come across a children’s home run by two woman. Which is where Mark encounters Katherine, the woman he never thought would see again, and as they are hired on a job, things get a little complicated. Meanwhile, Jonah might actually be opening up a bit to Eliza, the driving force behind the children’s home. But some kids in the neighborhood go missing, and it falls to the Horsemen to look into that...

Let me start off by saying: having a double romance thread is double the fun! I didn’t expect that as I like all my focus on one couple, but here it is true. Karen Witemeyer has outdone herself. Again. I know it must get boring to get only raving reviews, but honestly, she’s the best. I was captivated from beginning to end, and so invested in everyone’s story! There are quite a few suprises you don’t see coming, and of course it’s not only about the romance, there is much more going on!

I loved the bits inside the children’s home, and how it came to be. I love those kids to bits, and when more are showing up I cannot help but love them too. Abner is my favorite, he’s been hurt so much but he came out stronger and gentler. He and the other kids played a big part in this story and I loved it! There was a really moving scene where Jonah speaks some important truths to a boy and it made me cry...

And of course, the romance... I couldn’t wait to see who could get the charming Mark speechless and oh boy, she did! Kate is a force to be reckoned with, even though she’s a sensitive and gentle soul. She cares a bit too much. I love how they slowly reclaimed the past and tried not to get hurt again. And I love the strong women! Kate knows where she’s needed and she will make her own way. And Eliza is a very intelligent and independent woman in the best way possible, she’s had to fight for her dreams, being Black. She founded the home all by herself after going to a prestigious school to learn teaching. She and Jonah encounter racism, and it hurts to read how they both are impacted by the past. Jonah has learned to keep his words close to him, while being a perfect gentleman, he holds his feelings and is always on guard. I love to see him open up and heal a bit.

There is also quite a bit of action in this book, and it’s just the right amount! I absolutely loved the twists and turns the investigation took and the end was quite a crescendo! I absolutely loved it! I kinda need a huge epilogue though, of preferably 300 pages. I can’t get enough of these characters and wish it wouldn’t end.

All in all, this is a new favorite of mine, and if you love Karen Witemeyer you will not be disappointed! She’s the best!

I received a free e-copy from Bethany House and Netgalley but it hasn’t influenced my opinion.

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The Heart's Charge is Karen Witemeyer's newest novel and the second in the Hanger's Horsemen series. This one focuses on two couples, rather than just one, which I thought worked well. I also appreciate that Witemeyer tackled some deeper issues in this book, including child abandonment and suicidal thoughts, that most Christian authors shy away from. Karen Witemeyer is one of a handful of authors that I will automatically read their latest novels and this book is a good reason why.

I received an advance reader copy of this title from the publisher.

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I've read and appreciated all Karen Witemeyer's wonderful books but her newest offering, The Heart's Charge has to be her very best! Witemeyer has really outdone herself with this compelling mystery and it's fantastic characters!

I loved that there were two Hanger's Horsemen that found romance in The Heart's Charge. I didn't realize that would be in the case and I really enjoyed watching each one play out. The well drawn descriptions of Horseman, Mark and Jonah along with their female counterparts, Kate and Eliza who run a foundling home for homeless children was fascinating. Reading their inner thoughts and perspectives and what drives each one made for a terrific story.

The opening chapter's were full of excitement as Mark and Jonah find a woman in labor and the story goes back and forth between the stress of not knowing what to do for her and many a humorous anecdote. In fact the humor in this book is so good I found myself thoroughly amused throughout.
Case in point, one of Mark's inner thoughts about finding a woman in labor:
"Why God had chosen him to aid this woman was a mystery he'd never comprehend. The Almighty must not have had anyone else in the area."

In addition to such great characters, Witemeyer writes a suspenseful mystery Jonah and Mark are committed to solving. Who is kidnaping homeless children and why? What a page-turner!

I loved all the children at Harmony House, so charming, even with their hard early childhoods. Rawley's boxcar gang was pure delight and added so much to the story.

There were plenty of inspirational moments and quotes too. I especially like this one:
"Satan used loneliness to isolate and depress. But God uses it to build compassion.:

The Heart's Charge is going on my favorite books of the year list! I highly recommend it. I can't wait for the next Hanger's Horsemen book. I appreciate Bethany House Publishers via Netgalley, making a copy of The Heart's Charge available for review. All thoughts and opinions are my very own.

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In this second installment of her Hanger's Horsemen series, Karen Witemeyer uniquely tells the story of two couples: Mark Wallace and Katherine Palmer alongside Jonah Brooks and Eliza Southerland. Mark and Jonah, whom readers have met in the previous installment, run into Kate and Eliza while delivering a baby to the foundling home the women run. Will Mark and Kate-- who almost married one another back East years before-- gradually learn to trust again and communicate with one another? Will Eliza, who has never felt as if she belonged anywhere, learn to accept Jonah's attentions despite his own secrets?
Before reading The Heart's Charge, I was skeptical on two counts: that telling two love stories simultaneously would prove confusing, and that Witemeyer, despite good intentions, would struggle writing a story from two black characters' perspectives. Luckily, she proved me wrong on both counts. I actually enjoyed the double love story; it seemed to make the plot move more quickly, and there was no need to add pointless or frustrating obstacles for the characters to overcome before the "happily ever after." Similarly, I thought Witemeyer handled the race issue beautifully. She certainly didn't shy away from the struggles Eliza and Jonah had faced in society, history, culture, etc. While I enjoyed At Love's Command, the first Hanger's Horseman novel, I definitely prefer this second one!

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This was another excellent book from Karen Witemeyer. Mark and Jonah are characters you want men to be – strong, protective, willing to fight for what’s right and for those they love. They care about children who have gone missing that other people didn’t even notice went missing. The development of the relationships between Mark and Katherine and Jonah and Eliza are sweet and relatable. This book is an excellent continuation of the Hanger’s Horseman series although I kind of missed the other two horseman and would have liked them to be in this book more than they were.

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The Heart's Charge started with a bang and drew me into the story. From the opening pages, you could see the kind of men Jonah and Mark were: they helped even when the person they chose to assist didn't understand how much they needed assistance.

Things really got interesting once the two men got to the Harmony House foundling home. There, Mark came face-to-face with the woman he'd almost married 10 years earlier and Jonah met a woman who made him consider settling down.

What I loved about the Horsemen was that they truly wanted to help people. When they saw a need, they met it and they did so without making the person feel inferior or helpless. They didn't discriminate about whom they would offer their help to and considered the needs of everyone--adult and children alike.
Mark and Kate had a rich history but it had been ten years since they had seen each other. As they rekindled their romance, you get a glimpse of what they may have had before. The reader is also left with the feeling that though their younger selves may have been good together, it was this more mature version that was destined to be.

Jonah and Eliza's relationship was more complex as none of them had known each other before and they  each had complicated histories. I liked how well they complemented each other. Eliza thought any man who wanted to marry her would try to dominate her. She was pleasantly surprised to learn that Jonah wanted to work beside her rather than pushing her behind him.

Woven throughout The Heart's Charge is the mystery of what happened to the missing children and where they had disappeared to. I have to admit: when the mystery unfolded, some bits of it surprised me.

The Heart's Charge had several themes weaving through it but one of the most prevalent is that God is with us through every moment of our lives. He has a plan for us and He's weaving our pasts into a beautiful tapestry that may be used for His glory.
The Heart's Charge is the second Hanger's Horsemen book but could be read as a standalone (I did). I received an advanced reader's copy from the publishers through NetGalley ; a positive review was not required.

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Oh, this was a lovely book! The Heart’s Charge is the second book in Karen Witemery’s Hanger’s Horsemen series. I was so excited to read Mark’s and Jonah’s books and it was even better than I had hoped. The characters gave me all the feels.
Members of Hanger’s Housemen, Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks arrive in Llamo County, Texas, expecting to help deliver a steed not expecting to help deliver a baby. With a baby now in their care, they head to a founding home, Harmony House. There Mark finds the woman he nearly married a decade before, and Jonah finds a woman who makes him want to share his heart. However when a bunch of children go missing, Mark and Jonah will have to figure out a way to find the missing urchins
I really liked Mark and Jonah from the first book, so I was really happy to see them in this book. I thought it was so fun how Witemeyer put them together, they are kind of opposites and yet they balance each other out.
Mark was such a sweetheart, and I really liked him. He was a hard worker and it was so fun to read about him interacting with the kids at Harmony House. He truly cared for Katherine, Kate, and I liked reading about their romance growing. They were old friends, but they had grown so much through the years. Kate was also sweet and I liked how she cared for the kids at Harmony House. They were her babies. She had liked Mark when she was younger, but as she spent more time with him, her “like” grew to love.
I loved Jonah, he was the strong steady type. He was kind but he didn’t have a lot to say. However, he was determined to save and find the missing children, and he was willing to do whatever he had to do. I liked learning more about him and his past as he spent time with Eliza. I thought that Eliza was so much fun! She was feisty and determined, and I loved reading about her interacting with Jonah. They both had the ability to rattle each other, which I thought was cute. :)
It was so interesting and intriguing to read about Jonah and Mark as they tried to find the missing children. They were determined not only because of the women they had fallen for but also because they cared for kids. As they searched for the kids, they started to fall for the girls. I liked reading about their growing romance. Also, it was fun to learn about the backstories of the characters. The kids in this story were super sweet and they really added to the book.
The Heart’s Charge was a great book and I would definitely recommend it! It is a clean, Christian historical fiction. The characters were engaging, there were cute kids, and a plot that kept you guessing.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required.

I posted my review on Goodreads, Bookbub, and Barnes and Nobles on 05/14/2021. I will post my review on blog and Amazon closer to release date

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Karen Witemeyer just keeps getting better and better! I've been reading Karen's books for several years now and I've enjoyed them all but I think this is my new favorite. I love how she manages to have 2 love stories going at the same time and how she expertly weaves bible verses and trust in God throughout.

In The Heart's Charge not only do we get one handsome man on horseback, but two! Maybe it's because I grew up with a cowboy for a dad, but I'm a sucker for a rugged man on a horse. I equally enjoyed Jonah and Eliza's story as well as Mark and Kate's. Of course with Karen's books we always get adventure and excitement, plus we get all the kids that live at Harmony House. I wouldn't mind seeing future books with Abner or Rawley in them.

If you love Christian Historical fiction like I do, definitely give this one a read. I think you'll enjoy it just like I did!

Special thanks to NetGalley for sharing this amazing digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest opinions.

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THE HEART'S CHARGE is the second novel in the Hanger's Horsemen series by KAREN WITEMEYER. Although it can easily stand alone, I strongly suggest you read the first book in the series, for pure enjoyment.
The story takes place in 1894 in Llana County, Texas, where Katherine Palmer and Eliza Southerland have started the Harmony House Foundling Home.
Jonah Brooks and Mark Wallace are ex-military and members of Hanger's Horsemen. They are involved, first of all, with delivering a baby and taking it to the foundling home, and then with trying to catch some "kiddy-snatchers".
The book is well written, and, although the author deals with some serious issues, there is some humour as the very real characters interact with one another. I like the camaraderie between the horsemen, Kate and Eliza, and of course the children. There is some romance, nail biting suspense, and an excellent Christian message which blends beautifully into the story.
It is altogether a most enjoyable and exciting read and one I can highly recommend.
I was given a free copy of the book by NetGalley from Bethany House Publishers. The opinions in this review are completely my own.

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Whenever I open a Karen Witemeyer novel I know I am in for a story that is just pure goodness and that was once again the case with this second book in the Hanger’s Horsemen series! I will admit to a little confusion at the start because I didn’t read the synopsis clearly and didn’t realize there were two couples. But once I sorted everything out I settled in and enjoyed the story.
I like both Jonah and Mark when we met them in the first book so I was excited to get their stories. I would have liked more time with all four of the Horsemen together but the friendship between Jonah and Mark gave enough of a taste of the team’s camaraderie.
Mark was the friendly sort, quick to make anyone at ease but he also had a strength that made him excel at his job as a Horseman.
Jonah was more on the serious side, a life of being overlooked or judged had taught him to keep to himself, but he had a kind heart and would do anything to help someone in need.
Meeting Kate and Eliza for the first time I wasn’t sure what to think of them but they quickly grew on me and showed themselves to be the perfect pairings for Mark and Jonah. Kate was the softer of the two with a heart that just ached to love society’s outcasts. And Eliza may have been the sterner of the two but she loved the kids just as fiercely.
Because Mark and Kate had a past relationship the fact that their romance moved quickly made total sense and I loved getting to see them reconnect! Jonah and Eliza’s pacing was a little slower as they didn’t have the benefit of history and they had more walls to break down, but moving slower worked for them and was a good balance for the more whirlwind relationship.
I really appreciated how the author handled the tougher topics that came up like race and illegitimacy, painting a historically accurate picture but also shining a light on how wrong things were handled all without turning it into a soapbox that took away from the actual story.
All in all this was another fantastic book from Witemeyer and I’m looking forward to hopefully getting Preach’s story next!

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The first book in this series, At Love’s Command took a bit of reading before I was engaged. Not so with The Heart’s Charge. From the beginning I was drawn into this tale that weaves itself around so many themes. It is a testimony to the skill of Witmeyer’s writing that she can weave together two tales of romance, a mystery of missing children, the plight of the abandoned, the challenges of grief, and a story of racial tensions while developing each aspect of the story fully. Men of integrity and women of compassion in a complicated world made for a thought provoking and engaging book which I can wholeheartedly recommend to you.

Now that we’ve read about Matthew, Mark and Jonah there is only one horseman’s tale left to tell and I’ll be keeping my eye out for the next book in the series.

I received a free digital galley of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

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An absolutely amazing second book in the Hanger's Horsemen series! After reading and absolutely loving At Love's Command I was super psyched to dive into The Heart's Charge, and what a fantastic ride this story is! I loved Mark and Jonah, they are both such fantastic heroes that I simply can't choose a favorite! In my opinion the only thing better than a Karen Witemeyer written romance, is TWO Karen Witemeyer written romances in the same book! I absolutely loved that we get both Mark and Kate's, and Jonah and Eliza's love stories, it added a whole other level of amazingness to this story! And I LOVE that Ms. Witemeyer chose to feature an African-American hero and heroine, Jonah and Eliza brought to this book a beautiful diversity that, in my opinion, we need more of in Christian fiction!
Oh, and I would be remiss if I didn't mention just how much I love that gorgeous cover! I could stare at it for hours, and I wish there was a way I could frame it and hang it on my wall! I've been absolutely mesmerized by this cover since the moment I first saw it, and it's one of my favorite covers of all time!
I absolutely adored everything about this book, and most highly recommend it! The Heart's Charge is a fast paced read that will take you on a thrilling ride and leave you blissfully grinning, and eagerly anticipating Preach's story!

I received an ebook copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley. My review was not influenced in any way. All thoughts and opinions are one hundred percent my own.

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Karen Witemeyer has hit the nail on the head once again and provided yet another delightful Western romance with plenty of adventure. I truly adored this book and read it in one sitting! Karen Witemeyer has a way of providing swoon-worthy romance and riveting adventure in a single book that makes me unable to put down it down. She also manages to teach deep and meaningful spiritual lessons through her writing, and they always seem to speak straight to my heart. I loved that The Heart’s Charge was two love stories in one book, and I thought that there was a good balance between the two relationships in the storyline. Mark and Kate already knew each other, and their romance moved quickly. Their relationship was sweet with some wonderfully romantic moments, and their story was my favorite of the two. The other couple, Eliza and Jonah, met at the beginning of the book and their relationship was a slow burn ending in love and an adorable courtship. Having two main characters who are persons of color during the late 1800s in Texas is rare for Christian fiction, and I thought the author handled Jonah and Eliza’s story extremely well while providing a wonderful perspective. Best of all--and in true Karen Witemeyer style--the adventure in the story was captivating and included everything from outrunning trains to being kidnapped by outlaws. I could not put down this story and thoroughly loved it! I highly recommend The Heart’s Charge like I highly recommend all of Karen Witemeyer’s books, and I enthusiastically give it 5 stars.

I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher in exchange for an honest review, and my thoughts are my own. I truly did love it!

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The Heart's Charge
by Karen Witemeyer
Back of the Book: “Members of Hanger's Horsemen, Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks arrive in Llano County, Texas, to deliver a steed, never expecting they'd deliver a baby as well. Left with an infant to care for, they head to a nearby foundling home, where Mark encounters the woman he'd nearly married a decade ago.
After failing at love, Katherine Palmer dedicated her life to caring for children, teaming up with Eliza Southerland to start Harmony House. From mixed ancestry, illegitimate, and female, Eliza understands the pain of not fitting society's mold. Yet those are the very attributes that lead her to minister to outcast children. The taciturn Jonah intrigues her with his courage and kindness, but there are secrets behind his eyes--ghosts from wars past and others still being waged.
However, when a handful of urchin children from the area go missing, a pair of Horsemen are exactly what the women need. Working together to find the children, will these two couples find love as well?”
Impressions: This is the second novel to the Hanger’s Horsemen series however can be read as a stand-alone novel easily enough. All in all, this was an exciting story with double the romance.
Rated: Kisses, attempted murder
Liked: Although there were multiple situations needing solving each one worked well together in the end and made the story more interesting. The romances in this story were naturally interwoven within all the excitement. In this story, however, the children stole the show for me. The boxcar kids’ lifestyles were so intriguing.
Disliked: In the end, the rationale for the main perpetrator's actions was not convincing to me for the crime committed.
Quotes: “You can’t control what people say, what they do, or how they think. All you can control is what you say, do, and think. Control the mind first, son, and the rest will follow. Pain and anger narrow our vision. Take a higher perspective. Even the vilest man is made in the image of God and loved by Him.”
“Eliza had fine-tuned her male-identification system, with the majority falling into one of three major categories.” – I laughed out loud that Eliza had a male identification system and you will just have to read the book for her fun personality descriptions she goes into. I don’t blame her for being cautious at all but her bluntness was entertaining.
“Ted, on the other hand, is a Texas tornado trapped in a four-year-old’s body.” – I’ve never been to Texas but I imagine that my youngest son could fill this description.
“Lessons taught from love bring wisdom. Lessons spawned from fear and pain often come with cynicism and bitterness attached, which cloud the truth.” -I found this insightful.
“Satan uses loneliness to isolate and depress. But God uses it to build compassion.” – Amen to this! Been there done that, attitude changes the way you process your feelings. I can be down in the dumps about something or try to find others who might be experiencing the same thing and try to help each other through the struggle. I can throw a pity party for myself or I lean into God and allow Him to show me His way. I can then use this experience to give others hope.
“But if each man and woman were defined solely by their greatest sin, what hope would there be for any of us?”
I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review shared here.

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The Heart’s Charge by the amazing Karen Witemeyer is filled with SO much literary goodness! Strong heroines, loyal heroes, a captivating plot sprinkled with moments that make me chuckle one second then swoon the next! I totally love how this novel features not only one but TWO heroes. Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks, members of the Hanger Horsemen, find more than they bargain for when they knock on the Harmony House door. Both Kate and Eliza are strong, capable caregivers of the foundling home whose lives are certainly changed with the appearance of horsemen.

The mystery lent to more of a serious tone, but the author balances the heavy with the light, utilizing her signature banter and giving the reader plenty of humorous scenes.

Also, the romance thread was perfection. I really enjoyed getting all the varying points of views. It was simple to follow along and made for a rich reading experience. A theme that carries over from the last book is one of facing regret, and the author addresses it beautifully.

This is a story I highly recommend.

*I received this copy from Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

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This book began in an exciting way that immediately had me leaning forward and wanting to never put it down! Karen Witemeyer has a gift of creating characters who feel real and comfortable, and I thought this book did a fantastic job of bringing the stark truth of the time period (the inhumane treatment of the Native American population and the racism against African American people) to a story that showed that humanity was not all lost. We get two romance stories in one here, with a whopping four POVs, which at times felt difficult to follow. I usually have a max of two POVs before my brain has some trouble keeping everyone straight. Particularly for the purposes of reviewing. However, I was so glad we got to see both couples get their happily ever after, and I only wish Eliza and Jonah had their own book, so we could see even more detail in how they fell in love.

Mark Wallace never expected to hold a baby in his arms, at least not this way. Returning home after delivering a horse, he and his partner, Jonah Brooks, come across a woman in distress. She is about to have a baby, and she is in no condition to take care of things on her own. After successfully delivering the baby, the mother isn't able to take care of her properly, and so they must take the baby to a nearby foundling home. Upon arrival, Mark sees Katherine Palmer for the first time in ten years, the woman he proposed to and who in turn rejected him, pushing him to join the army and leave home for good. Katherine is both elated and devastated to see Mark again. They have so much past between them, and her life has taken a path away from marriage with assisting her friend, Eliza Southerland, with the home for unwanted children. Marriage is not in her plans, but God has His own plan that sets in motion a journey for the four people suddenly thrown together by fate.

Mark was genuinely one of the nicest men I have seen written in a while. Essentially without flaws, I found him almost too good to believe. He was a kind young man when he knew Katherine when they were children, and he grew to love her as they spent more time together. Unfortunately, Katherine didn't see past the flirtations the other girls in town flung at Mark, and she got herself in a predicament that ultimately led to them being separated. It was wonderful to see them get their second chance at love, even if Katherine was resistant at first. Jonah Brooks was the other hero of the story, though his romance was not the primary one of the book.
He was a black man with walls sky high, partially from how he was treated due to his skin color but also because of his emotional scars after being a sharpshooter. Wounded Knee affected him deeply, and so that's why it was even more romantic to see his romance with Eliza Southerland, the illegitimate daughter of a slave woman who was eventually freed by Eliza's father. Eliza was hardened yet kind, and I loved her character so much. I found her and Jonah to be the more interesting couple, mainly because of their hardships and backstories. I so admired how much good they had done despite the bad done to them. Woven into the story was a mystery plot of disappearing children, and I liked seeing Mark and Jonah take the lead in finding the children, even at their own peril. They had such strength of character and were very admirable men throughout the book.

I always love reading Karen Witemeyer and look forward to what comes next!

**I received a free copy via NetGalley and this is my honest review.**

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The Heart's Charge
by Karen Witemeyer
Bethany House
You Like Them You Are Auto-Approved
Bethany House Publishers
Christian | Historical Fiction | Romance
Pub Date 01 Jun 2021 | Archive Date 11 Aug 2021

What a great book! I will read anything Karen Witemeyer writes because she does it so well! My library loves books like this. Christian/Historical Fiction/Romance. It will fly off the shelves. It is refreshing to read an author who speaks to her readers so well. Thanks to Bethany House and NetGalley for the ARC.

5 star

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It is impossible to resist Karen Witemeyer's writing. Once again she absorbed me into this story of adventure, romance, strong female characters and the men of integrity who love them.

The Heart's Charge provides us two stories in one. We readers first met the Hanger's Horsemen in the first book in the series and in this second book we join up with two members of the group, Mark and Jonah. Together, Mark and Jonah stumble upon a pregnant woman in labour. They, reluctantly, assist in the birth and find themselves responsible for the care of the young infant. This then leads them to Harmony House, a place where children of any race or background can find a home. A surprise awaits them both. Mark finds the woman he once wanted to marry and who broke his heart. Jonah finds a strong and resilient Eliza who might just be the one woman who can work her way past his tough exterior.

This is such a delightful story. There are diverse characters (yay!), incredibly strong female characters who work alongside the male characters to fight for justice for the children in their care. There is action, a touch of mystery and suspense. There is such sweet romance and two romance stories to enjoy. The book touches on some important themes, including depression, grief, postpartum depression, racism, and the discrimination faced by African-Americans. This is done well in the historic setting, acknowledging the time and views of that time but also allowing for today's more accepting and understanding approach, which is appropriate for modern readers.

As all of Karen Witemeyer's books are, this is sensitive, beautiful, well written and thoroughly enjoyable. Can't wait for the third book in the series where we get the fourth Horseman's story.

The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own

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The Heart's Charge is overflowing with daring cowboy adventures and not one, but two romantic storylines. When I started this series, I figured each Horseman's journey to find love would be featured in his own book, so I was surprised when this book told of two Horseman and their ladies. If you are a fan of Karen Witemeyer, then you will know that her stories are intriguing, her cast of characters are unique and diverse, and the quick paced plot will have you glued to the pages. I thoroughly enjoyed reading Mark and Jonah's story, there was never a dull moment! I'm looking forward to reading Luke Davenport's story in the the third book of this series.

Thank you Bethany House and Net Galley for the free DRC of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

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I loved this book and the way it featured two of Hanger's Horsemen. Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks find themselves in the middle of a mystery regarding missing children... or are they? No one seems to realize there are missing children. While they try to unwind what's really happening, Mark is confronted by the one who got away. Could this be his second chance at love? Jonah finds a woman who doesn't need a man. That indendepence tugs him to her. Overall, this book is a lovely blend of romance, mystery, and history. I loved it!

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*** CAPTURED MY HEART AND TOUCHED MY SOUL ***

Seriously, you can never go wrong with a Karen Witemeyer story! I did not think I could love a series so much (particularly after her Archer family series)!

Llano County, Texas 1894
28-year-old Mark Wallace has a heart the size of Texas and it is evidenced throughout this story! "a gentleman never abandoned a woman in need. Even if she shot at him." I loved his gentle way with the baby. Katherine Palmer is the woman who broke his heart and now, 10 years later, that woman needs his help at Harmony House Foundling Home. I was captivated by their reunion.

Jonah Brooks and Eliza Southerland are guarded but drawn to each other during the harrowing situation they find themselves in. Kiddy snatchers have invaded the area. It was nice having a second romance in the story and both are nicely rounded out.

Faith Quote: Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy. Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked. Psalm 82:3-4

Favorite Quote: "You can't control what people say, what they do, or how they think. All you can control is what you say, do and think. Control the mind first, son, and the rest will follow. Pain and anger narrow our vision. Take a higher perspective. Even the vilest man is made in the image of God and loved by Him." -Jonah's father

Tea Quote: Katherine swallowed the last bit of her tea, her face scrunching at the lukewarm temperature. Strange how something so perfect when hot left a bad taste in her mouth after the passage of time.

The kids were another interesting layer. Some of them would be great to read about as older characters, particularly the rail-riding Rawley - leader of the young band of orphans trying to survive on their own. While tough on the outside, he clearly has a tender heart.

I received a complimentary eBook through NetGalley and the Publisher for my honest review. All opinions are my own without further compensation or expectation.

In addition to my blog, Pinterest, and IG, reviews also posted to: Amazon, B&N, BAM, CBD, GoodReads, GooglePlayBooks, & Kobo

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The thing I love most about Karen Witemeyer's books is how funny, sweet, and overall a great read. This did not disappoint.

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Karen Witemeyer is one of those authors that I read as soon as the book is released because she consistently writes such wonderful stories! This book is a great second novel in the Hanger’s Horsemen series. There are some ties to the first book, but it can also stand well on its own. I really liked the characters in this story and enjoyed the two intertwined love stories. The characters have such a richness and depth to them that it makes it easy to feel like they are real despite it being a fictional story. I appreciated how the author wrote about a black man and a mixed race woman during the nineteenth century, detailing their struggles to fit into a society who had not long ago abolished slavery. I thought the spiritual themes were well integrated into the book. I also enjoyed the mystery and suspense of the storyline and found several parts surprising. I really liked this novel and look forward to the next one!

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author. Opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.

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If there’s anything better than a romance in a Karen Witemeyer book, it’s two romances in a Karen Witemeyer book, and The Heart’s Charge has just that. The second book in her Hanger’s Horseman series features Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks as they meet up with Katherine Palmer and Eliza Southerland who run Harmony House, a home for outcast children and foundlings.

When Mark Wallace helps deliver an unwanted baby, he and Jonah are told to take her to Harmony House. Mark is astounded to find Katherine, the girl he almost married, there. The sparks are definitely still flying. And Jonah is soon enamored by Eliza as they try to help out the two ladies and their charges.

“Shoot, he’d probably stolen enough glances at her to earn his own wanted poster, but he didn’t regret a one. Not even when she caught him in the act.

When rumors of missing children crop up, Mark and Jonah decide to hang around and see what is going on. Action, suspense, intrigue, and lots of romance abound in this delicious tale, along with a healthy dose of inspiration and faith. I’m definitely looking forward to the next book in the series. 4.5 stars

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Bethany House. All opinions are my own.

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Ahhhhh how I love Karen Wittemeyers books!!! I love that she is doing a series on the horsemen , which means the goodbye at the end of each book isn't the final goodbye! This book was different in the fact that it had two love stories in it, which means 4 perspectives. That took a bit to get used to but she pulled it off splendidly!

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We get a two for one romance in The Heart's Charge! I loved both couples, but especially enjoyed Jonah and Eliza as they unexpectedly fall in love after believing it would never be in their futures. There is a great balance struck between the adventure, suspense, good humor, sweet romance, and spiritual growth. The pace was steady with spurts of acceleration as danger threatens the children of the community. Rawley, Abner, and the other kids in the story were a fun contrast to the adults, and contributed in their own special way to solving the mystery and making the story come to life. The way Mark, Jonah, Katherine, and Eliza interacted with the children showed deeper aspects of the adults' personalities in a way that was more impactful than simply telling. I admire the qualities of the men of Hanger's Horsemen that have them ready and willing to fight for those who need an extra measure of protection and assistance. I'm excited to see what the next book brings!

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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The Hearts Charge by Karen Witemeyer

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
_____________________________________________________________________________
Story Notes

Karen Witemeyer invites readers back into the world of Hanger's Horsemen as two more of them find love and fight to protect those in their care.

I've been really looking forward to this next story in the Hanger's Horsemen series. The first book introduced us to a group of four men determined to remove the sins of their past by taken on those who take advantage of the defenseless. This story begins with Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks coming upon a woman in labor on their way home. The woman is armed and very defensive - while also clearly in much pain. Mark stays with the soon-disarmed woman while Jonah seeks out a doctor. The subsequent birth of a little girl leads Mark and Jonah to promising to take her to the nearest foundling home, Harmony House. One of the women who run the home is the last person Mark ever thought he'd see again - Kate Palmer - the woman who broke his heart ten years ago. Kate cannot believe Mark just walked right into her orphan home. She never expected to see him again after what happened between them and she is not pleased at the way her heart still seems to be held by this very handsome, former military man. Jonah is startled to find a black woman working with a white woman at a foundling home. It's his experience that the races don't mix willingly so his is amazed to see how kind the ladies are to each other and the children in their care. Delivering the baby to the home is not the easy task he thought it would be either, given that there is no one to nurse the child. Eliza Southerland volunteers to take Jonah to the nearest women who can help and their wagon ride proves to be dangerous to Jonah's heart. Eliza is a fierce fighter for the innocent and Jonah is impressed with her capable nature. He never thought he'd fall for someone given the hardness of his heart after his time in the military. But Eliza and the children at Harmony House seem to be very adept at skirting his walls. But all is not love and roses in Llano county - someone is taking children, especially those who are orphans, and no one seems to be doing anything about it. Mark and Jonah determine to find out what is happening and put a stop to it before anyone else is taken. These two Horsemen will have more help than they imagined with two brave women and passal of children looking to save their friends from harm. I loved every page of this story. Mark and Jonah are such wonderful men with a clear sense of justice and protection and it was so great to see them find love and a home. I loved the snappy conversations, the swoony kisses and the frank conversations that were had. They all loved the children in their care without any prejudice and taught them the love of Jesus without preaching at them. I can't wait to see where Ms. Witemeyer is going with this series next - Preach is such a good character already that I'm excited to see what kind of woman she will devise for him. Hope that story comes out soon!!

I received this temporary complimentary E-book from the publisher via NetGalley in order to provide a fair and honest review. I will receive no fiscal compensation for this review and the opinions expressed herein are entirely my own.

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I just knew it could happen again , Karen Witemeyer's books keep my attention from the moment I crack them open until I turn the last page wishing for more.
The author writes fast paced stories with great character development.
We have a double story line going here with the story line focusing on two couples rather than one so it's double the fun.
This can be read as a stand alone but I recommend the first book first to get the full benefits of the series.


Pub Date 01 Jun 2021
I was given a complimentary copy of this book. Thank you.
All opinions expressed are my own.

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As members of Hanger's Horsemen, Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks have learned much about honor, about teamwork, and about brotherhood. When Matthew Hanger sends them out from Gringolet ranch, to deliver a horse, neither man expects to be roped into delivering a baby, too. Once the baby is delivered, the mother's severe depression forces the two men to search out the nearby foundling home, and who should answer the door, but the one woman Mark has never been able to forget. He'd loved Katherine as a boy of 18, but when she rejected his suit, he joined the Army. Ten years later, and all grown up, can Mark convince her that the boy who loved her is now the man who still does?

Katherine Palmer had loved Mark Wallace with every fiber of her girlish heart, but when circumstances "forced" him to propose, she couldn't bear to be a burden to him, so she refused. She left home, and joined up with Eliza Southerland to create Harmony House, a home for cast off children. Eliza's mixed heritage (she's the daughter of a slave and a slave owner) helps her to understand the children who come to them. She understands "not fitting in". She's highly educated, but as she says, she's too white to teach in a black school, and too black too teach in a white school. She believes she is destined for spinsterhood because of her mixed race. Can Jonah convince her differently?

Jonah Brooks is the only black man among the Horsemen. He began his Army career as a Buffalo Soldier, and was trained as a sniper. His eyesight is actually pretty amazing. (Where most people need spyglasses to see things at a distance, Jonah can see them clearly without.) However, his sniper training has also, in many ways, isolated him. Eliza is impressed with the kindness she sees in Jonah, and the way he notices those who usually slide under the radar, but can the two of them get past their own hurts to see the potential for love in the other?

Karen Witemeyer uses her trademark humor, with some hard-hitting gems to bring a story that actually includes two different romances. It's obvious from the start that Mark still loves Katherine, and she still loves him, but she takes a LOT of convincing. I loved that the two men found an "excuse" on their first day in Llano County to stay for an indefinite period of time. Jonah and Eliza's romance blossoms slowly, from their first glances, to sharing their hearts and their hurts with each other. Of the two, I think I liked theirs the best - possibly because they had the most to overcome.

If you've never read a Karen Witemeyer book before, you're in for a treat with this one! It is actually book 2 in the Hanger's Horsemen series, but it can be read as a standalone. (Although, I think if you start with this one, you'll want to go back and read At Love's Command, just to get Matthew & Dr. Jo's story.) Readers who love historical westerns with plenty of romance, and even some mystery/suspense, will enjoy The Heart's Charge. I'm not sure when book 3 will come out, but I know there is one last Horseman who needs a wife!

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Second chances, camaraderie, faith, horses and adorable children, what more could I ask for?

I had high expectations for this book, and have been eagerly awaiting its arrival since the moment I finished reading the previous book, and let me say it did not disappoint! This book is a total homerun, with both Mark and Jonah getting their stories in one fantastic book.

Jonah is a brave man, a former Buffalo Soldier, he has a noble heart, is a quick thinker, is decisive, and I loved his magnificent horse, Augustus. I especially enjoyed his growing relationship with Eliza over the course of the story. She is a beautiful woman inside and out with a heart for children, to give each and every one a place to belong. I admired her faith and courage.

Mark is confident and cool, he is a likable man who has a knack for getting people to talk to him, I loved his friendship with Jonah and thought that they made a stellar team. Mark is shocked to come face to face with the woman he has never been able to forget. After losing her place in society Katherine threw herself into helping the orphaned children alongside Eliza, I loved the friendship between the women. I admired her devotion to the children, and liked to see her and Mark working together.

A engaging page-turner, that I didn't want to put down, and I didn't want to end. This book has it all, with amazing main characters that you can cheer for, great interaction, adorable children, strong faith, horses, with great pacing and plot building along the way. There is a lot going on in the book that keeps everything moving, and I absolutely loved having two heroes and heroines. Even though it's hard to choose, I think that this might be one of my favorites by Ms. Witemeyer! It does help to have read the first book in the series before this one so that the characters are more familiar, plus I don't know why in the world you'd want to skip At Love's Command. Highly recommend, another amazing read from Karen Witemeyer that lived up to and surpassed my high expectations!

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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First sentence: When Mark Wallace left Gringolet two days ago to deliver a prize gelding to a wealthy rancher west of Llano, he never dreamed he’d be called upon to deliver a baby too. Or that the mother of said baby would be waving a pistol back and forth between him and Jonah as if trying to decide which fellow to shoot first.

This book had me at hello. I'm not just saying that to say that. I mean this book had me HOOKED from the first page. Readers first met Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks in the first book of the series, At Love's Command.

In this one, Mark and Jonah are out on their own as they come across a woman in labor. A suicidal woman in labor. A woman determined to join her husband on the other side without any care or thought about the baby. Fortunately Mark and Jonah are there to intervene. They take the newborn to Harmony House, a home for foundlings.

SURPRISE, SURPRISE. As Mark is delivering the newborn baby to Harmony House, he sees an old love, a lost love. Katherine Palmer is the last person he thought he'd see...and the first person he'd love to reconnect with. She was always his one that got away. She's made a new life for herself, devoted herself to a wonderful cause or mission. And she's working side by side with another woman, Eliza Southerland, to do it. The home takes in unwanted children of all ages and gives them a good, loving home and some education.

Eliza Southerland doesn't know what to think of Jonah Brooks...but she can't help thinking about him!

These two decide to stick around a little bit longer....at first to help fix Harmony House up a bit--it's a bit of a fixer-upper. But soon they are on a case of their own....and it involves KIDNAPPED CHILDREN.

It will take a lot of WORK--much team work--to save lives and see justice done. Will these couples find reasons to stay together after all is said and done???

I loved this one. I did. I absolutely LOVED, LOVED, LOVED it. I loved that we essentially have FOUR narrators. I loved getting to know Mark, Jonah, Eliza, and Kate better. I loved how well we got to know each character. I loved seeing these relationships develop. It didn't feel insta-love either. The journeys these couples takes was just swoon-worthy.

At times I can be harsh when it comes to life-and-death danger in romance novels, but, in this case I think it was seamless. It didn't feel overly dramatic and forced. Perhaps the villain(s) weren't as well-developed as the main characters, but, I don't know that I would have wanted to spend more time with them. It almost would have ruined the suspense if more groundwork had been laid for the reveal. Part of the suspense is NOT KNOWING who is behind the kidnappings. (Okay, all of the suspense).

One thing that I especially loved, loved, loved about this one--something that makes it stand out--are the children. I loved getting to know the children. Especially Abner. But also others like Rawley, Wart, and Al. The children are an integral part of this one. Abner's scenes were show-stealers in my opinion. And one of the scenes with Abner just made my heart grow three sizes.

This is a wonderful novel. I'd give it ten stars if I could.

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This story has such wonderful characters. They fully give of themselves not expecting any praise or payment, fully doing what they feel they have been called to do. Mark and Jonah are members of the Hanger's Horseman who help people out when they are called on. Kate and Eliza are devoted to running Harmony House where there was a need to reach out and help homeless children. When these four people get together they take on the mystery of disappearing boys and finding more funding to help with remodeling the Harmony House to help more needy children. I always enjoy when children are some of the interesting characters in a story and there are some, yes, characters for sure in this one. Some serious topics covered here but also some wonderful touching scenes too. Definitely going on my favorites list!
I was gifted a copy from the publisher through NetGalley, no review was required. My opinion and review is voluntary.

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The Heart's Charge by Karen Witemeyer continues her well-loved series Hanger's Horsemen with an intriguing storyline full of unexpected twists and turns along with romance, faith, and plenty of adventure for every reader. I sincerely enjoy reading Ms. Witemeyer's writings and I thoroughly enjoy her talent of piquing the reader's interest from page one until the final page is turned. Ms. Witemeyer's characters always have a rich background, great depth, as well as relatable flaws and admirable character traits. I appreciate how Ms. Witemeyer weaves together such exciting plots in her stories with excellent characters as well as bringing in many moments of comedic relief.
Especially with this work by Ms. Witemeyer, I noticed how she develops interrelatedness between the characters of each of her series, which adds an even greater background and depth to each character. I appreciate how the characters that were side characters in previous books now have their own stories in the later books. If you have not read At Love's Command, the first book in Ms. Witemeyer's Hanger's Horsemen series, I would highly recommend that you read it before reading The Heart's Charge. The Heart's Charge can be read without the background of the first book in the Hanger's Horsemen series, but why wouldn't you want to read At Love's Command? ;)
The Heart's Charge begins with Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks, two of the infamous Hanger's Horsemen, landing in a situation that neither one would have expected when they agreed to transport a horse to a rancher: helping deliver a baby! Although delivering a baby on the American frontier is a challenge in itself, Mark and Jonah have to deal with the added danger of the woman giving birth having a pistol aimed at their heads! When the horsemen are left to care for the newborn girl, they are at a loss for what to do, but discover a foundling home close by where they can place her. If Mark's day wasn't surprising enough, when he and Jonah bring the baby girl to the foundling home, the woman who answers the door is Katherine Palmer, the woman who broke Mark's heart.
Katherine Palmer has dealt with heartbreak, disappointments, and failed dreams, but she is happy to have the opportunity to care for children at Harmony House, the foundling home where Mark and Jonah bring their unexpected charge. Katherine along with Eliza Southerland, her partner and friend, have built a wonderful yet humble home for children that are seen as outcast or unwanted. Eliza Southerland has a troubles and heartaches of her own in her past which lead her to distrust others, especially men. However, when Eliza and Jonah cross paths, their heated disagreements may be a cover for how much they intrigue each other. Unexpectedly, the Hanger's Horsemen are called to action by the pleadings of some local children to discover where some of the orphaned children living on the streets are disappearing to.
Can Mark and Jonah discover what is happening to these children? Can they find the children before it is too late? Will Mark and Katherine be able to reconcile as friends after so much time and hurt has separated them? Can both sets of friends find happiness together? I guess you will have to read The Heart's Charge to find out!
It was very interesting to read this story of Ms. Witemeyers and see the well-developed double storylines of the two couples of Mark and Katherine and Jonah and Eliza. I appreciated how Ms. Witemeyer brought into the storyline the friendships between Jonah and Mark as well as between Katherine and Eliza. It was such a sweet story full of overcoming challenges, dealing with ghosts from the past, as well as looking towards the future with hope and grounded by faith in God. I appreciate all of Ms. Witemeyer's writings, but I especially enjoyed the heroes and heroines of this story. It was a very well written book and I would highly recommend it.
Disclaimer: Bethany House Publisher graciously provided me with a copy of this book through NetGalley. All opinions are my own and part of an unbiased review.

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I always enjoy Karen Witemeyer's books. The humor, the heart-felt story, the loveable characters. For a book with four protagonists, I found it nicely balanced between the four perspectives; I didn't feel that one couple was given preference over the other. And I liked that it was truly one story--not a different plot thread for each couple, but rather a cohesive whole, with everyone working together for a common goal.

The multi-racial cast was very well done. Jonah and Eliza were well thought out in how they were portrayed; they don't feel like white characters of a different color. They don't react the same way as their white comrades. They often compensate for the expected prejudice, and Jonah especially is careful to avoid situations that could be misconstrued. He doesn't let Mark run the show--he chooses to interact with local lawmen regardless of the prejudice he might encounter. But he is careful in what he says, how he reacts, and who he is willing to be alone with.

Over all, a fun story!

Thank you Bethany House and NetGalley for the complimentary e-book. I was not required to write a positive review, and all opinions are my own.

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Having not read the first book in this series, I found this story easily read as a stand alone. I loved the main characters and their missions. I enjoyed the band of rail riders with their quick actions as they strove to look after each other. The strength, faith and compassion of the Horsemen is admirable. Looking forward to reading the first book in the series as well as the third. Recommended.

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*Warnings*

#1 This is a long review, so pull up a chair and grab a bowl of popcorn. You’ll be here awhile.

#2 When I read a review, I want substantial information. So I will not skimp on the details. Which may mean some spoilers, so watch out.

Stars: 5

Synopsis: Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks, one half of the infamous Hanger’s Horsemen, have found themselves in Llano County...delivering a stranger’s baby. Through an unlikely incident, war-hardened Mark and Jonah find themselves saving babies, caring for orphans, and even falling in love.

Favorite Quote: “Regrets are heavy, son. The fewer you cart around, the better of you’ll be. But when they come, and they will, remember you got a Father who will carry them for you if you let him.”

Karen Witemeyer is actually one of my first and forever favorite authors—up there with Roseanna M. White and Kristi Ann Hunter—and even though this is technically my first time ever reviewing any of her books, I have loved her for years!

Why? Well, probably because (1) her writing style is so well-balanced and yet she has such a unique voice; (2) all of her books are chock full of humor and wit; (3) her plots are always so smoothly paced, intriguing, suspenseful, action-packed, and just plain fun; (4) despite having some action and suspense in almost every single one of her books, the romance is always very well-developed and super sweet and swoony; (5) her characters are different without being outlandish, and so easy to love!

So that sums up the kind of expectations I have whenever I pick up a Witemeyer Western, I guess. (Ooh! That should totally be a genre: Witemeyer Westerns. Yep, I’mma start writin’ me some o’ those! Anyway…) I had extremely high expectations for The Heart’s Charge, both because I absolutely loved the previous book in the series, At Love’s Command, and because this time Witemeyer was full-on writing TWO romances in ONE book!

Now, I know she can do it—she’s the master of well-developed novellas that are never rushed or skimpy; and she pretty much did the same thing before in Heart on the Line with Grace and Amos and Helen and Lee. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t worry about how much I’d enjoy this book…

That being said, I didn’t hesitate one second (I’m honestly not sure if I even read the full blurb) before picking up this book. The day I got this puppy in the mail was a glorious day for me, and I hadn’t even cracked it open yet!

I cracked it open two seconds later, though, and thanks to being down with a cold, I’d read clean through this here book by the end of the day! Definitely worth a case of the sniffles.

Anyway, enough jawing. Let’s get into all the reasons why I loved The Heart’s Charge specifically (as in, not for all the reasons why I love Karen’s fiction...those are automatically applied).

#1 I ADORED the characters. I mean, I love all of Witemeyer’s characters (except for Amos and Grace; they were definitely my least favorites), but Mark and Jonah and Kate and Eliza were just...well, adorable!

Mark was such a cutie-pie. I remember him being hilarious and flirtatious in At Love’s Command, but oh. my. word. Seeing (or reading, I guess) him care for baby Sarah and hanging out with the kiddos at Harmony House and get all flustered around Katie was just pure enjoyment for my little romantic heart.

But Jonah? Yep. Jonah was mah man. I think I loved both him and Mark equally, but there was a part of me that was (1) super excited to read about a black hero and (2) falling in love with his quiet, macho demeanor. Seriously. I does not get any better than that. (Can I just say that although I love the cover, they really should’ve gotten a different model for Jonah? I just imagined him taller and brawnier and darker and frownier and...stuff. That may’ve just been me, though.)

As for Kate, she was great. (Yes, that rhymes on purpose.) I rarely ever get too attached to heroines, and that was still the same for THC, but I did like Kate’s personality and her loving nature. It always pleases me to read about a historical heroine who actually likes children, and even more so do I love reading about characters (especially girls) who follow God’s will for their lives and seek Him in everything, no matter the sacrifices they have to make.

So, on a side note, that right there—the underlying theme of sacrifice and missions—was one of my favorite parts of this novel.

Then there was Eliza. Y’all, that woman was a hoot! Throw Jonah in the mix, and woo-wee! I guess it comes from being a Southerner (as in, being around a lot of black women with thick heads, stubborn hearts, and smart mouths), but reading about Eliza was like making a new best friend. She was so real to me, and that was one thing I really appreciated about both hers and Jonah’s characters—that they were so realistically portrayed in ways that hardly any characters are these days.

Anyway, all four of the main characters had such strong personalities and were just plain awesome. So there’s that.

#2 I guess I’ve already covered this (but then, doesn’t a five-star rating say enough as it is?), but I just want to drive the point home that, yet again, Witemeyer has effortlessly pulled off two stories and four POV characters in one average-sized novel. Her developmental skills are quite possibly the best of anyone author I’ve ever read—and that’s saying a lot right there.

#3 And here’s the point y’all have all been waiting for… I loved how racism was portrayed. I make it a point not to read stories strategically focused on racism, because seriously, y’all—I get enough of that from the news. So I’m always a wee bit concerned when going into a book with colored characters (or, shoot, even female characters—y’all know I can’t stand a feminist agenda) that the author is going to turn the story into an argument against racial injustice.

That’s all well and good for nonfiction, but I don’t read fiction for that reason. I read fiction to escape from this whacked-out world I live in. Anyway…

That’s why I loved how Witemeyer handled the issue of racism in this time. It wasn’t the main focal point, where the story was all about wallowing in self-pity, behaving as a victim, or dealing with gobs amount of hate. Instead, the story was about two individuals who persevered, made a good life for themselves, and showed love to others, no matter their race.

That right there is what I want to read—even from books about racism.

Same goes for how she tackled sexism—what with Eliza and Kate running the orphanage all by themselves. They didn’t establish an orphanage to prove themselves or cause controversy—they did it to help others and follow the Holy Spirit’s prodding—so never did they cause a stir or make a fuss about their gender or any restrictions they had because of it, you know? They were truly strong, independent women—especially considering they showed respect to their authorities, love to their persecutors, and accepted help when it was genuinely needed and lovingly offered.

So, all in all, Witemeyer did a commendable job handling these tougher subjects, for which I am exceedingly grateful.

To sum my rambling up, y’all, this is a prime piece of fiction right here. Witemeyer rarely ever disappoints! The Heart’s Charge was on-par with her best novels (but, then, aren’t they all her best?) and full of heart-pounding suspense, swoon-worthy romance, and her signature wit and humor! I simply cannot wait for the next installment in the Hanger’s Horsemen series! (C’mon, Preach, it’s time to throw your hat in the marriage ring!)

Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided by the publisher, publicist, or author, including NetGalley. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Thank you to Bethany House Publishing for a gifted copy of The Heart's Change by Karen Witemeyer. All opinions are my own.

The Heart's Change is the second book in the Hanger's Horseman series. This book centers around Jonah and Mark. While returning from a job they come across a woman in labor. The baby needs to be taken to a foundling home and they volunteer to get her safely to the home. At the home, Mark is surprised to find someone from his past and Jonah is hired to investigate some missing children. There's some romance and a little mystery in this one.

I really enjoyed this one. I loved having both stories simultaneously. It is a quick light read. I'm looking forward to the next book in the series. I'm assuming this is going to be a trilogy because there are four horseman and three stories have been told so far.

Christian
Historical Fiction
Romance
Release Date: June 1, 2021

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Mark Wallace and Jonah Brooks deliver a horse in Llano County, Texas for Matthew Hangar, their friend, employer, and leader of Hangar’s Horseman. Mark doesn’t expect to end up delivering a baby, as well. When Jonah returns with the local doctor, the man directs them to a nearby foundling home where they hope to leave the infant. The woman who opens the door of the run-down-looking Harmony House takes his breath away. Thousands of miles from home, he’s run smack-dab into his first and only love. The woman who turned him down.

Katherine Palmer's girlish ploy to get the attention of her school crush goes horribly awry. Bucking convention, Kat refuses to marry Mark Wallace and vows to make better choices for the rest of her life. Her vow leads her to Eliza Southerland, a black woman on a mission to start an orphanage for children society has rejected. Together, the two women start a foundling home. Kat never expected to see Mark again, much less standing on her doorstep with a wailing infant in his arms.

Mark wants to stick around and help out at the orphanage, and Jonah agrees after a local boy tells him about the kiddy-snatchers. If the rumors prove true, Mark and Jonah agree it’s a cause Hangar’s Horseman can get behind. Jonah won’t mind getting to know the sassy Miss Southerland better, either.

Will their quest for the missing children lead them to love? Something neither one ever expected?

Why I Loved This Book

Witemeyer leads readers on a wild chase around Llano County. Pillars of the community might be rotten and the tight-knit community cares little for homeless children. The second in the Hangar’s Horseman series, The Heart’s Charge can stand alone (but you won’t want to miss the first book, At Love’s Command). The pages ripple with intrigue, danger, friendship, and love.
Unlike most books written by white authors, the two Black characters don’t play token roles in the story. Jonah and Eliza exemplify how people from different races can collaborate if they make a commitment to focus on similarities rather than differences.

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4.5 Stars

Y’all, Karen Witemeyer treats readers to not one, but two romances in The Heart’s Charge, and what a joy it was to read.

Mark comes face-to-face with Katherine, the woman he almost married years ago, and Jonah meets the headstrong yet intriguing Eliza. But the romance is only part of the experience of this book. From the boxcar boys to those residing at the foundling home, the children in this book will tug at your heartstrings—whether it’s tough and determined Rawley, the quiet yet grateful Abner, or the sweet little Al, the little ones leave a lasting impression.

When Jonah stumbles upon the occurrence of kids going missing, he and Mark consider it their duty to discover who is behind it. Witemeyer’s characteristic humor and banter add balance the heavier moments of mystery, action, and discovering a home and a future.

The Heart’s Charge proves again why Witemeyer is a favorite author for so many historical romance fans.

Disclosure statement: I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book and was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.

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I love anytime a story gives me two romances for one.

I already fell in love with this series in book 1, but don't worry this one works as a standalone if you haven't read it yet (but you should!).

I really liked getting to know Mark and Kate along with Eliza and Jonah. I especially loved that the women ran a children's home and Loved getting to know the kids too.

This book tackles some tough topics of slavery and race and I thought Witemeyer did a good job in a short book of laying out just one type of scenario from that time in history.

True to Witemeyer's style the romance and the adventure were paired well together. The pacing was well done. I loved the romance parts. Tons of great kisses.

I received an advanced copy of this book through NetGalley. This is my honest review.

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The second book in the Hanger’s Horsemen series opened with excitement! That is the type of novel I like to read. Whitmeyer had my interest from the beginning. The famous Hanger’s Horsemen, Mark and Jonah happened upon a seemingly deserted cabin with a deranged woman inside giving birth to a child. Mark is petrified but he cannot leave her alone. Jonah races back to town to fetch a doctor. The little girl is delivered by Mark, after all he is a ranch hand that has tended many an animal birth. The poor woman is in deep mourning because her husband has passed away and all she talks about is going where he has gone. She wants nothing to do with the child, only wants death. The doctor arrives and tells Jacob to take the child to Harmony House {which is a home for foundlings} there they will take the baby to a wet nurse. When they arrive at the home, to his great surprise he finds a girl who was his closest friend from childhood whom he has not seen for years……Thus begins this most interesting book dealing with kidnapped and missing children. Children who are homeless and living on the streets, just fighting to exist. Kindling romances for both of the Horsemen. Learning to lean on and trust the Lord to lead and guide in all things. Lots of excitement and danger takes place as all search for the missing boys and why would anyone be stealing young boys. For what purpose? Also finding out what becomes of the newborn little girl. A great book with a great ending….. Thanks to the publisher for allowing me to read and review another winner for Whitmeyer..

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Karen Witemeyer always knows how to both steal and warm her readers heart all at the same time while illustrating great lessons of faith.

This is the book 2 in the series Hanger's Horsemen and picks off with Mark Wallace and Jonah Brook's on a mission of helping an amazing and intriguing set of people.

The Horsemen had a stellar reputation of rescuing helpless people and this book was a beautiful story of rescuing helpless children and finding love in unexpected places. The grit and determination of Mark, Kate, Eliza, and Jonah was profound. How fiercely they protected those who couldn't fend for themselves was admirable and touching. The sacrifice in this book was nothing short of heartwarming and inspiring.

The author shone a lot of light into the segregation of the people of color in the 1800s. The way the plot and characters merged together produced a very enjoyable, captivating and inspiring read.

If you’re in the mood for two amazing and sweet love stories with theme of second chances, sacrifice, restoration you won’t want to miss The Heart's Charge by Karen Witemeyer.

The publisher offered a complimentary copy of this book. The review was given freely, without payment.

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This is a wonderful story of second chances, grace and God providence. The story starts with Mark and Jonah helping a widow who’s in labor. With the help of the local doctor, the widow gives birth to a beautiful, healthy girl; however, she doesn’t want the child because she is overcome with grief due to the loss of her husband. Since the mother couldn’t take care of the baby, they decide to take the baby to the local foundling home and Mark is shocked to discover that his old childhood friend (and almost fiancé) Kate, was helping run the Home. Since there was no one at the Foundling Home that could nurse the baby, Jonah and Kate’s friend/partner Eliza, take the child to a nearby mother to be nursed and while there, Jonah discovers a rumor about local boys disappearing because of the “kiddy-snatchers”. He decides that the Horsemen need to help find the missing boys; however, the biggest problem was that the boys who were missing were the local boxcar children and no one in town paid attention to them. Being reunited with Kate was a miracle that Mark wouldn’t have ever dreamed of, but now that he is with her, he doesn’t think that he can ever leave her again. He decides to help fix up some things around the Foundling Home while he and Jonah investigates the case; however, with hardly any leads and very few witnesses, the Horsemen are going to need a miracle if they’re ever going to find the kids.

I have loved all of Karen Witemeyer’s books and this one was no exception. The book slows down a bit after they help the widow, but it by no means messes with the story and really gives you time to get to know each of the main characters. I loved reading about Mark and Kate’s childhood and my heart broke when I read about the struggles Jonah and Eliza had throughout their childhood. I thought it was amazing that God had used the events (both good and bad) in each of the four characters past to bring them all together and it just reminded me that God does work all things for good to those who love him. Overall, I loved everything about this book and cannot WAIT for the third book in the series. I rate the book 5 out of 5 stars! Special thanks to Karen Witemeyer, Bethany House Publishers and NetGalley for letting me read and review this book – all opinions are my own.

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I finished reading The Heart's Charge by Karen Witemeyer and it was really good! loved it! Another great read. 5 stars.

Thank you #netgalley for the free read.

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Every time I read a Karen Witemeyer book they become my favorite. This one definitely did and I was so disappointed when I turned the page to realize I was indeed at the end! It was so good. I loved the characters, their relationships and the storyline! Strong female leads and strong male leads who recognize the women were strong and supported them. Just an overall great story. The kids in the book were so precious! The interaction between them and the two Hangar’s horsemen was a highlight. I also like how they listened to the children and didn’t dismiss their fears and rumors of children missing. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All views stated here are my own.

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The Heart’s Charge was impossible to put down. I have met Mark and Jonah before in the first book in the Hanger’s Horseman series and couldn’t wait to get my hands on this one! The Horsemen are easy to fall in love with, but they all have secrets and wounds that they carry with them. They all also seem to end up in ridiculous situations at times. When Mark and Jonah went to deliver a horse to a near by town they end up finding a woman in labor with no one else around to lend a hand. Being the gentleman that they are, they know they have to help. Little do they know, after they deliver that baby their lives will never be the same.

I loved getting to know Mark and Jonah better. This story went more into their pasts and helped me understand more of what made them who they are. I loved the bits of advice that Jonah remembered from his Father. There was great wisdom in those, and they can easily be applied today. The kids were so sweet and I easily loved them and enjoyed their dynamic with each other. Two women living on their own, while raising unwanted kids have to be made of some strong stuff. I enjoyed getting to know Eliza and Katherine, and can easily see how they might catch a Horseman’s eye.

This book took me by surprise. There were many twists and turns I didn’t see coming. Witemeyer knows the perfect recipe to mix suspense, history, and romance. The result for me is staying up too late waiting to see what will happen next. This story was a blast to read and I can’t wait to see what happens next in this series. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers and was in no way forced to post a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Another fantastic western from Karen Witemeyer! This book was unique in that there were two couples featured in the novel. While sometimes one romantic interest can take the spotlight, in this case I felt that equal amount of time was given to both couples. Both were likeable and well developed. I also liked the racial diversity within the main characters. It wasn't the focus of the book, but some aspects of the prejudices these characters were subjected to were addressed. These issues were presented in a mild and respectful way.

In this series, the members of Hangar's Horsemen are a group of men that banded together to fight injustice. Even though the group has begun pursuing some other things, they can still depend on each other to come when needed. You still see that band of brothers in this book, as tension builds and help is needed. It created some action packed scenes that made a real page-turner. I loved the role that children played in the book as well. They made for some sweet and tough characters that added a lot to the story.

I am looking forward to the next book in the series and would definitely recommend starting with book one!

**I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in order to share my honest opinion, which I did.**

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This was really well written. There is romance, even double romance but also intrigue and a mystery. This is one where you really want to root for the good guys. They are so swoony as well as being good heroes in life. I loved them. And the ladies as well. I liked that despite being seemingly invincible the heroes actually can be injured and it doesn't seem like they can save the day but with the help of their women they do. As for who the bad guys are, I was not surprised. I called them as soon as I met them but I didn't know how it was all going to play out even if I did suspect them of being evil.

This is Christian lit and the Christian themes are strong. No subtlety there. But it was okay because the beliefs of the characters were ingrained into their being so it didn't feel unnatural.

No sex or language
Violence: yes
* I received a complimentary ARC through Netgalley and voluntarily chose to review it.

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Oh, wow! Karen Witemeyer has done it again! The Heart's Charge is an amazing story, filled with compelling danger, bravery in the face of fear, life-changing spiritual lessons, and characters who melted my heart.

Though there are many characters with significant roles, it was not difficult to keep track of who was who. And each one was unique, making for a rich tale. Mark had a love of music and a talent for making everyone around him comfortable. Jonah was a serious man. He was intense - scarred by the life he had lived and yet was deeply compassionate towards the hurting hearts around him. Kate was full of kindness and compassion for those around her. And Eliza, who experienced grief and loss from her earthly father's fear of accepting her as his own child, poured her heart into the children she taught with great skill.

As these four worked together to protect the boxcar boys from abduction and to rescue those who had already disappeared, their hearts became intertwined (in Mark and Kate's case - again) and their lives changed. The women learned to overcome their greatest fears.

I loved how Mark and Jonah ministered to the boys, sharing truths from the Bible that aptly fit the circumstances so well. Jonah's version of Jephthah's story was so insightful.

I also loved the way the women learned to trust and support the men even when they disagreed with their choices. Not in an ""I have to submit no matter what"" sort of way but because they trusted them and their relationship with God.

If you enjoy historical fiction with mystery, intrigue, and romance, you won't want to miss The Heart's Charge! Be sure to read the other stories in the Hanger's Horsemen series as well.

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Sigh... Those Hanger's Horsemen! If I were in trouble I would want any one of them helping me, to have all four would be even better.

Jonah and Wallace stumble upon a case where Box Car children are being taken. Their sense of right and wrong lead them to investigate and endeavor to save the children. Their adventure leads them to deliver a baby and Wallace to find the woman he intended to marry years ago. The romance in this book is tender and respectful. The best part is this is a two-for. Two romances for the price of one.

Harmony House is a place for parent-less children. It is not an orphanage because the children are taken care of as they would in a family setting. The founders love each child as if they were their own. The women do a fantastic job, but their place is in dire need of improvement. Both Jonah and Wallace rise to the challenge of helping and protecting the women and children. The four main characters are beautifully written. I could almost imagine myself on the homestead with them. Karen Witemeyer captured the old-west for me. I was lost in the pages of the book.

The Heart's Charge is an inspiring book. There is one more Horseman to go. I really want to continue with the series and see what is in store for this group of heroic men.

Source: I received a complimentary copy. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

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Book title: The Heart’s Charge by Karen Witemeyer
Book Reviewer: Donna Feyen

I am new to Witemeyer’s writing. At Love’s Command was the first book I this series and the first book of hers to read. I am hooked!! I am not sure how she does it but I am hooked. Her characters are superb. The Heart’s Charge is the second book in the Hangers Horsemen series and is Mark and Jonah’s story. I was not sure I could like the second book as much as I loved the first one. I was wrong.

Mark and Jonah are men of character. You fall in love with them. Kate and Eliza are a perfect match for them. Kate turned down Mark’s proposal 10 years ago and never thought she would see him again. She and Eliza are running a foundling home. The story of the children was heartwarming. I loved seeing them flourish throughout the book.

One of my favorite scenes was the conversation between Johan and Eliza in the buggy on the way to the town. The author did an amazing job of making their situations relatable. Another of my favorite scenes was Al. 😊

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I think this is one of those books that you can very well tell what kind of story it will be by looking at the cover. And then some.
I started reading this western style historical novel, and I was hooked. (this is the second book in a series, but it reads well as a stand alone)
Mark Wallace is a typical gentlemanly cowboy type of hero. Strong, gentle, and all of that. I enjoyed reading about him and seeing his personality emerge on the pages of this book.
I also found it interesting to read about his past with Katherine, and to see how and when their relationship might begin to grow again...yes, I think this is definitely a story that is just a bit predictable. But, in spite of all of that, it is fun to read, to see how exactly they reach their happy ending.
I found this to be a light hearted easy read, enjoyable and fun, but also with some deeper issues hidden below the surface.
Disclaimer: I receive complimentary books from various sources, including, publishers, publicists, authors, and/or NetGalley. I am not required to write a positive review, and have not received any compensation. The opinions shared here are my own entirely. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

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The Heart's Charge is another excellent Karen Witemeyer book. From the compelling opening to the heart-wrenching conclusion, Witemeyer takes the reader on a fast-paced adventure, sprinkled with humor and romance.

The Horsemen are once again in the middle of a difficult situation where their unique skills are call on to rescue children, women, and one another. The characters are well written and the conflict and solutions relatable.

The Heart's Charge is a fun adventure. I recommend this book as a great continuation in the series.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. All opinions are my own.

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I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy this book since it had actually four main characters (two couples) but I should never had doubted Karen. I so enjoyed both couple’s journey as they found love. If I had to choose though, I think I enjoyed Jonah and Eliza’s story the best because Eliza was so contrary.

The mystery that is unraveled in this book is interesting as well, although, I had a good Idea who was behind the missing children pretty early on.

Karen is also wonderful had writing tense and action paced final scenes and this book has them.

If you like historical romances with a western flare I am sure you will enjoy this one.


A copy of this book was given to me through Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

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As I began reading this book, I soon realized that I wasn’t just being told a story. I was invited and drawn in to experience life in Llano County, Texas during the spring of 1894. I was introduced to an outstanding cast of characters, some of whom were almost larger than life.

This book is historical romance at its best, with the telling of not just one love story, but two. Through skillful writing, I was given the sense that the author truly enjoyed, cared for and was at times amused by her characters as much as me.

I loved the way that friendships were portrayed in this well written book. Trust was earned, not demanded. Forgiveness was needed, sought after and abundantly given. Second chances were granted. Children, even those discarded by society, were valued and treasured.

I loved the ending! I read it with happy tears streaming down my face.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House Publishing through NetGalley and a paperback. Opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.

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I enjoyed this story. It has a second chance romance and two couples who find their happily ever after. There is a lot of drama and some adorable, independent children. There is also a faith element that I enjoyed. This is the second book in the series but is really a complete standalone. I received a copy of this ebook though NetGalley and the publisher. A positive review was not required and all opinions are my own.

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I think I liked it even more than the first book. Maybe because it had two of the Horsemen's love stories. This book was funny, fast-paced and frolicking good fun with some serious issues and villainy. I loved all the characters both main and minor. I liked how the men, women, children and even the horses all got to be heroes in their own ways.

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I’m kind of an on-again, off-again reader of historical Western fiction. I used to read it more, but with having less time to read, I’ve found myself slowly weeding this genre out of my frequent reads . . . unless it’s by Karen Witemeyer! In that case, it’s instantly on my to-be-read list, even if I’m not able to review it.
This is the follow-up book to At Love’s Command, though you don’t have to read the first to appreciate this one. Each book stands alone, but if you read the first and enjoyed the characters, I can almost guarantee that you’ll like this one. Though I’m not picky about the storyline, at least when it comes to Ms. Witemeyer’s books, I’m not typically a huge fan of love lost and then found again. So I was excited to find that this book had a dual romance aspect and nicely tied up 2 stories in 1. I found the mystery intriguing and quite enjoyed getting to know Eliza and Jonah, along with the rather colorful collection of kids in their care.
I honestly can’t think of a single thing to nitpick or say I didn’t enjoy. It did broach the topic of skin color and background in a way that I found well done and rather fitting for the time we’re living in. Though I may not be racing back to read it again, I found it an interesting summer read and would recommend anything from this author.
*My thanks to the publisher for my copy of this book! I was not required to write a review, positive or otherwise, and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Karen Witemeyer’s latest release, “The Heart’s Charge”, is the second in the “Hanger’s Horsemen” series, but it could mostly work as a stand-alone; you’d just be missing some background information on setting as there’s not a large character overlap. This book actually follows the story of two couples, one high school sweethearts rediscovering each other in the 1800s American midwest, and one couple meeting for the first time (same setting). The stories are very connected and the chapters flip back and forth between the perspectives of these four characters, but it’s not confusing. There’s some mystery and drama woven in to keep you on your toes, but overall it’s a very sweet story and light read.

Thank you to Bethany House publishers and NetGalley for providing me with an electronic copy of this book to read and review. All opinions are my own and were not required to be positive.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion – which I’ve done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. 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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Another victory for Mrs. Witemeyer! I have never before liked a story told from more than 2 points of view – but this one was excellent! It was two love stories in one, and we got both heroines' and both heroes' thoughts and motivations -- for all 4 POV characters.
I loved how Jonah's and Eliza's wounds complemented each other, and I loved how Mark's and Kate's wounds involved each other. I'm so glad we got further into Jonah's psyche. He was the one I knew the least about and therefore liked the least in the previous story.
It definitely needs to be read in order, though. The background for Hanger's Horsemen needs to be understood from At Love's Command before you start this one.
The humor, the two different romances, the parental relationships with the adorable children of Harmony House and the ruffian boxcar children, the attention but not obsession with the race differences, and the faith woven throughout made this a truly enjoyable read.
The only thing I didn't enjoy was the violence. It wasn't as bad as the first one with the prologue in a war scene, but it still had shooting and killing. I also didn't appreciate that the only Latinos in the story were all on the bad side. Though the black man and mulatto woman were heroes, the Latinos were not.
Other than that, it was great, and I loved the ending!
Favorite quotes:
“Why God had chosen him to aid this woman was a mystery he'd never comprehend. The Almighty must not have had anyone else in the area.”
“Mark knew it was probably nothing but coincidence, but the fact that the establishment chose to quote from the gospel of Mark instead of Matthew or Luke resonated in his soul like a signal from heaven. He was meant to come here. Meant to trust these people with his little lady's care.”
“Until she [Eliza] understood his [Jonah] temperament, she wouldn't be able to manage him properly.”
“Why couldn't he just fall into one of her tidy categories and cease being so intriguing?”
“As if the babe understood him, she ceased her wailing and blinked at him. A team player. Good.”
“He [Mark] conquered the tower of tubers heroically, determined to impress the fair maiden with his knightly knife skills.”
“'Nice to meet you, Wart.' Somehow, Mark managed to pronounce the name as if it were a royal title and not an unsightly skin growth. But then, he'd always had a knack for makin' folks feel special.”
“He'd [Jonah had] been trained for battle, after all, not cowardice. Besides, what man in his right mind wouldn't take a moonlight stroll with a lady he admired? Even in territory littered with verbal snares ...”
“Katherine wiped her eyes and stood, mimicking Eliza's stance as if Eliza were some kind of pillar of strength to imitate, when Katherine was already one of the strongest women Eliza knew. Maybe not in the conventional way, but her soft heart had a core of iron.”
“'...start workin' on getting' you outta here?' And back to Kate. So he could wring her neck. Or more likely kiss her senseless. Yeah, kissing was definitely the better option.”
(I received a copy for free from the publisher on NetGalley. I was not compensated for this review. All opinions are my own, as was the decision to write this review.)

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The Heart's Charge by Karen Witemeyer is the continuing story of Hanger's Horsemen. Hanger's Horsemen are four ex-calvary men who left the army after the Massacre of Wounded Knee. They have dedicated their lives to atone for their actions. I love this series as it shows God can forgive any sin, we must simply ask for forgiveness and change our actions to follow His will. The plot was well developed and I liked the characters. I am looking forward to the third book in the series.
I recommend you brew a pot of tea and settle in for a wonderful story.
I was given a copy of this book by the publisher with no expectations. All thoughts are my own.

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A cute and fun read with lots of action from the beginning.
This book was so good! I always enjoy a Karen Witemeyer book. She makes me smile in more ways than one.
No telling what will happen when you put men and boys together. Trouble is sure to follow!

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I thoroughly enjoyed the first installment from Karen Witemeyer’s Hanger’s Horsemen series, At Love's Command. I was really excited to have the opportunity to read the next book, The Heart's Charge. It was far from disappointing. It was exactly what I would expect from this author. It was so fun and entertaining. I love that there were two romances going on here with Mark, Jonah, Katherine, and Eliza. There was some light mystery and suspense, as well as, some laugh out loud humor. It was great!

I am giving The Heart's Charge a very well deserved five plus stars. I highly recommend it for readers who enjoy reading clean historical romance. I can not wait to get my hands on the next book from the Hanger’s Horsemen series.

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The Heart’s Charge is book two in the Hanger’s Horsemen series by Karen Witemeyer. When Hanger’s Horsemen Wallace and Brooks run across and lady having a baby, that she does not want, they are directed to take the baby to a fondling home. The home is run by Mark Wallace’s ex-girlfriend and they are given a second chance.

This is such a good book. It is well written with strong caring characters. It takes off where book one ends, but there is enough background information given that this is also a good stand alone story. There is action, mystery and suspense through out the story that has not one, but two romantic friendships develop. I enjoyed reading this story, especially the part that deal with the boys who ride the trains and the lives they are forced to live at such a young age. This is a story of second chances and caring for others.

I received a complimentary copy of this book, this is my honest review.

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Two romances, lots of action - I really enjoyed this second book about Hanger's Horesemen. There's also a bit of mystery as to who is behind the kiddie snatching. Some things I guessed, some things I didn't. It's the characters that shine though, from the Horsemen, Mark and Jonah, and the women, Katherine and Eliza, to the children at Harmony House. Karen Witemeyer's books are always a pleasure to read and their faith message, inspiring. This historical escape was just what I needed to distract myself from life's worries.

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Karen Witemeyer is such a go-to author for me and she never disappoints! I was so exicted to get a copy of the second "Hanger's Horsemen" book.

Not only does she have amazing plotlines and swoon-worthy heroes, she incorporates so much faith elements that I love love love her books!

Thank you Netgalley and publisher for my copy of this book. All reviews expressed are my own, and I have not been obligated to leave a positive review.

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Karen Witemeyer knows how to draw the reader to the story with interesting characters, solid writing, and great descriptions.

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Loved this one. Hearts were definitely changed in this story. Two men, just doing their job find themselves acting as midwives to a crazed young widow. Left with a baby girl to find a home for, Mark Wallace ran headlong into the one woman who broke his heart before he left home for good. What Katherine was doing out west was a mystery. All the details unfolded soon enough: that is, after Jonah Brooks was blindsided by a beautiful woman who captured his heart. Miss Eliza Southerland was even less in the market for a suitor than any of the others. What unfolded was a story wrapped up as only Karen Witemeyer can fashion.

I recommend this book for fans of pure old fashioned romance of the wild west nature. A little danger but a whole lot of fun with a happy endin

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