About the Book
Book: Dogwood Winter
Author: Candace West
Genre: Historical Romance
Release date: August 24, 2021
A Lukewarm Correspondence. A Tattered Reputation. Two Hearts at Odds.
He is walking away while she is fighting to walk.
After a springtime swim, Ella Steen is stricken with a dire illness, leaving her without the use of her legs. Meanwhile, Dr. George Curtis, the man she secretly loves, faces ruin. For over a year, the crusty New York City bachelor and vivacious spinster have exchanged dozens of letters and formed a wary friendship.
Neither are willing to open their hearts completely. Until they face each other. The past looms between them, however. Does George still love another or is his heart completely free?
A trip to Valley Creek holds the answers. Instead, when George and Ella arrive, they encounter obstacles that force other truths to the surface. Is George brave enough to confront what he fled in New York? Can Ella confess why she hates dogwood winters? Will their hearts survive?
If only their pasts would keep out of the present.
Click here to get your copy!
About the Author
Candace West was born in the Mississippi delta to a young minister and his wife. She grew up in small-town Arkansas and graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello. At twelve years old, she wrote her first story, “Following Prairie River.” In 2018, she published her debut novel Lane Steen, book one of the Valley Creek Redemption Series. By weaving entertaining, hope-filled stories, Candace shares the Gospel and encourages her readers. She currently lives in Arkansas with her husband and their son along with two dogs and three bossy cats.
More from Candace
Biscuits and gravy has been a staple for generations in my family. It’s perfect for any occasion or breakfast, dinner, and supper. Yes, in our neck of the woods, dinner is lunch, and supper is—well, supper.
And then, we have biscuits and gravy with a twist. We’ll shove the traditional aside for a bowl of chocolate gravy. That’s right, chocolate.
Now, don’t get grossed out. Some people believe chocolate gravy is this weird, mysterious concoction made with meat grease. It’s the gravy part that boggles their mind, but it’s actually straightforward and easy—not true gravy at all. Trust me, if you like chocolate, you’ll want to try this. When you butter a biscuit and drizzle the chocolate over it, you’ll get a little taste of heaven on earth.
And you’ll get a little taste of the Appalachians and Ozarks.
My grandparents, both raised deep in the Arkansas Ozarks, were raised on “chocolate an’ biscuits” and passed the recipe down to us. Throughout the mountains and in pockets throughout the country, you’ll find this lesser-known treat on kitchen tables and family gatherings.
Every recipe is a little different. Every family has their own special way of making it. My family likes their chocolate gravy a little thinner while my husband’s family wants theirs to be the consistency of pudding.
In Dogwood Winter, my characters would’ve eaten chocolate an’ biscuits. Their corner of the Ozarks is famous for it. I can see Ella and George, along with the Steen family, gathering around a table, saying the blessing, and passing the fare to each other. The only skeptical one in the bunch would be George, a New Yorker who wasn’t raised on it. One bite would make him a believer.
Have you ever eaten biscuits and chocolate gravy? If not, would you try it?
This is our family recipe.
1 ½ cups sugar
1 tbs Hershey Cocoa powder
2 ½ tbs flour
Mix dry ingredients in a saucepan
Add 1 ½ to 2 cups of milk (depends on the thickness you want)
Bring to a boil and cook until thickened (3 or 4 minutes) Note: Bring to a slow boil and continually stir. Remove from heat then add 2 tbs butter and 1 tsp of Vanilla extract. Pour over buttered biscuits and enjoy!
Dogwood Winter is a historical romance that is written by Candace West. This is book three in the Valley Creek Redemption series. I have read book 2, but not book 1. You will want to read the whole series, so you can get the full stories of the characters. One of the things that I love about this author is how she writes such historically accurate stories. She really pours her heart into research and it shows with the story that she wants it as accurate as possible. As a history major, that is apparent.
In this book we travel back to 1912. Ella Steen has lost the use of her legs. We also see Dr. George Curtis. He is a surgeon but one mistake may cost him everything. The two of them write letters back and forth. They both have baggage and hurt in their lives. They don't fully reveal all of themselves or their character in their letters. What will happen when they meet face to face. Will that friendship turn to love? Will they be able to fully open up to each other.
Well written characters, an intriguing storylines, and a reminder that God can heal all pain. This is the 3rd book that I have read by this author and I love her gift of storytelling.
I received a copy of this book through the Celebrate Lit Blogging program, all thoughts are my own.
deb’s Book Review, August 26
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, August 27
Connect in Fiction, August 27
Inklings and notions, August 28
For Him and My Family, August 29
Locks, Hooks and Books, August 30
Reviewingbooksplusmore, August 30
Connie’s History Classroom, August 31
Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, September 1
Texas Book-aholic, September 2
A Modern Day Fairy Tale, September 3
Daysong Reflections, September 4
Britt Reads Fiction, September 4
Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, September 5
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 6
Life, Love, Writing, September 7
Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 8
To celebrate her tour, Candace is giving away the grand prize package of a $50 Amazon gift card and a paperback copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.