If you love stories by Lori Benton or Laura Frantz, you need to read the Creek Country Saga, including book 4, Bitter Eyes No More by April W. Gardner!
about the book
Bitter Eyes No More by April W. Gardner
Release date: February 2017
Genre: Historical Romance
A man of abiding honor, tested by a woman of ruinous passion. A woman of unspeakable sins, pursued by a God of unquenchable mercy.
Spanish Florida once sheltered Lillian McGirth from her fears. Now, it feeds them. Mercy is for the deserving; for Lillian, an unwed mother accused of treason, there is only battering and defeat, but her fall breaks softly in the arms of an unexpected arrival, a man too beautiful of soul to stain with her lost character.
Captain Marcus Buck sails in on a pledge to save Miss McGirth from herself and from her child’s father, a ruthless don. All the while, he’s to regard her as virtuous and worthy of protection and to guard said virtue from pilfering. But the terms are flawed since he must first guard her from himself. Regardless, he is determined. He will free her, repair her name—simple labor compared to dodging the army’s noose, mending wounds three years deep, and navigating a host of rebel Natives bent on inflicting more.
Through the steady crumble of his pledge, their friendship becomes a consolation, for she knows his pain as no other can or will. Their scars are one; their paths, however, might irrevocably become two…
Although they are rare in today’s market of stand-alone and three to four-book series, there is something deeply satisfying about experiencing a true literary saga ???? I ADORE these BIG BOOKS because they are not just big in size or page count for the sake of being long stories but the characters and their experiences demand a rich and saturating delivery. My reader heart is simply delighted with the Creek Country saga!
As a dutiful reviewer, I reluctantly concede that Bitter Eyes No More by April W. Gardner is able to stand on its own. However, as a historical fiction enthusiast, I implore you to invest your heart in the bigger picture, reader friends and let these characters come alive to you chapter after chapter and book after book. It’s the most wonderful feeling to revisit fictional friends in new adventures and watch them grow at an authentic pace across time and space.
Lillian McGirth has been a prominent secondary character from the beginning of the first book, The Red Feather, yet readers have only seen small glimpses of her heart and mind until this book. What readers have been able to discern before now haven’t exactly been her finest moments BUT one thing is certain, she loves fiercely. Lillian has grit and despite her weepy tendencies, she is tough enough to persevere and overcome with the right Help.
Doctor Marcus Buck is a relatively new character within the big picture of the saga but readers first become acquainted with him in the third book, The Ebony Cloak. Personally, I find the good doctor to be a steadfast, upright, and honorable man in even the most trying and tempting situations. Mr. McGirth chose well when he selected Marcus Buck as Lillian’s redeemer and guardian for her journey back home, physically and spiritually.
Attentive readers will notice cogs turning in the background for the next couple of books which will, for the most part, share a timeline with Bitter Eyes No More. This series is a must-read for fans of historical fiction and I’ll just keep telling y’all how much I adore it because I can! 😉
I requested the opportunity to read this book through Celebrate Lit and borrowed the book through Kindle Unlimited.
The opinions expressed are my own.
about the author
April W. Gardner writes history with a Christian perspective and a little imagination. She is a copy editor, military wife, and homeschooling mother of two who lives in Texas.
She writes Christian historical romance with a focus on our Southeastern Native Tribes. In no particular order, April dreams of owning a horse, learning a third language, and visiting all the national parks.
I’ve never needed one of those spiritual gifts tests to know I score a big, fat zero in the mercy department. When God impressed on me the themes of Bitter Eyes No More—mercy and justice—I figured I was the least qualified person to broach the topic.
However, in His perfect way, He knew exactly where I needed to be stretched, and over the seven months He used me to craft the story, He poked and prodded at my flaws, making them large in my mind and reminding me that no one is deserving of any quantity of mercy, grace, or forgiveness and that He alone is righteous enough to wield the gavel of justice.
Captain Marcus Buck, the hero in Bitter Eyes No More, learns the same lesson. Because of a horrifying stint of slavery on a British frigate, he drives through life seeking justice—all in accordance with the law, of course, but swift, fierce justice nonetheless. Lillian, the same story’s female lead, knows beyond a doubt she deserves the most righteous justice there is—an eternity apart from God. Mercy is only for the deserving, she says, but there can surely be none for her, an unwed mother with the label “traitor” hovering over her head.
Marcus, a surgeon and splendid swordsman, has engraved his sword with a passage from the prophet Zechariah. “This is what the LORD Almighty said: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another.’” (Zech. 7:9) It’s a beautiful piece of advice, but Marcus is blind to the second half.
What neither of these characters realizes at first is that God doles out mercy and justice as a packaged unit and in bountiful, equal measure. In our finite human minds, we tend to separate these two qualities, but God cannot give one without the other. More than that, He cannot be one without the other. He is all mercy and all justice in one perfect being.
Aren’t you glad? I sure am!
Creek Country Saga
In honor of her tour, April is giving away a grand prize package of a $15 Amazon gift card and four of her books in paperback, signed by her!
Who is ready to dive into this rich saga right now?! I am loving the Creek Country Saga!!!
If you’ve already started, let’s chat about your favorite character or aspect of the story
(no spoilers, this is a safe space)!
Be sure to add Bitter Eyes No More by April W. Gardner to your tbr!