Historical Fiction, Review

The Chapel Car Bride by Judith Miller

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Intriguing Glimpse into the Past by Bestselling Historical Author Judith Miller

The Chapel Car Bride by Judith MillerWith her penchant for seeing the best in everyone, Hope Irvine sees a world full of good people in hard places. When her father accepts a position traveling in a chapel car as an on-the-rail missionary, she is determined to join him in his efforts and put her musical skills to good use by serving the mining families of West Virginia, saving their souls, and bettering their lives.

Luke Hughes shares Hope’s love of music and her love of God, but as a poor miner he knows he can offer her no future. Still, the notes she sings resonate in his heart. When she begins to travel with a young mine manager to neighboring counties, Luke can hardly suppress his jealousy. It isn’t until he begins to suspect these missions of mercy might be the mine manager’s cover for illegal purposes, though, that Luke feels justified in speaking up. But how can he discover the truth without hurting Hope or, worse, putting her in danger?

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My Thoughts

This cover captured my attention, there is something nostalgic about train travel (for those of us who don’t have to experience the dust, jostling, and noise). I’ve often read stories about traveling preachers but this is the first one where the preacher actually travels with a chapel!

Hope is a loving daughter and a compassionate young woman. She might be a bit naive but Hope is determined to work alongside her father in the chapel car organizing services and meeting people’s needs in small communities along the rail lines. Hope is the kind of gal who has a big heart and makes friends with ease.

Luke has grown up in a small West Virginia mining town where folks work hard day in and day out but rarely get ahead. He has a heartwarming relationship with his mother and younger siblings and he’s patiently maturing into a solid man of faith. Luke is a natural leader and protector.

The Chapel Car Bride is a lovely, well-balanced story with a touch of danger, a sweet little romance, and a healthy dose of Christian love. My granny grew up in a small mining community around this time period so for me, this book has an added sentimental value.

I requested the opportunity to read this book through the publisher. The opinions expressed are my own.


About the Author

Although born and reared in a small suburb of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Judy moved to Kansas at the age of seventeen and has considered the sunflower state ‘home’ ever since. She currently lives in Topeka. She enjoys reading, traveling, researching history, and Bible study.

Writing Christian fiction is Judy’s second career. For many years she worked as a legal assistant in law firms and later worked in government law offices. She has retired from legal work in order to write full time —a vocation she considers both a ministry and a blessing.

Judy has authored or co-authored more than twenty-five books since she began writing in 1996. She is an award-winning author whose avid research and love for history are reflected in her novels, several of which have placed in the CBA and ECPA top ten lists. It is her deep desire to point readers to the love and grace of Jesus.

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Also Available

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We are getting our first taste of long-distance train travel in the fall.
Share your dreams, advice, or favorite memories of riding the rails!

4 thoughts on “The Chapel Car Bride by Judith Miller”

  1. I read The Chapel Car Bride. I thought it was sweet but Hope’s naivety annoyed me. Surely nobody from a city (even a historical city) could be that naive.


    1. If I didn’t personally know people with that personality, I would find it hard to believe as well. Hope is also at the age when we are convinced that we know how the world works until we eventually mature and realize we had no idea 😉


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