Ann Gabhart is a writer of inspirational novels. She doesn’t sugar coat, nor is she “in your face,” with situations her characters experience. She was born and raised in the Outer Bluegrass region of Kentucky, so grew up on a farm. She has been writing since she was just 10 years old. She first published a historical romance in 1978 and continues to give us fodder for our eyes, spirits, and hearts.



Angel Sister is a touching novel set between World War I and World War II. The depression era brings Lorena Birdsong to a poor family where she adopts Kate as her Sister Angel. The family isn’t one that is stable, except in its love. They are poor, dad is an functioning alcoholic, Kate has two sisters (one older, one younger), and mom loves them all. They survive by growing their own vegetables, milking a cow, and running a tab at the general store which happens to be owned and run by Kate’s paternal grandfather.


Speaking of grandfathers, the family is blessed with two, yet neither are loving. Grandfather Merritt is stiff, stern, and unbending in his disappointment of Victor (Kate’s father). He has a heart bent on self-destruction and if it destroys Victor in the process, so much the better. Grandfather Reece is a strict Southern Baptist pastor. He is determined that Kate is belligerent and going to the devil. Together, although the two grandfathers can barely stand each other, they work to remove Lorena from Kate’s home.



Lorena is 5 years old and sees Kate as her angel. The one person that God sent to save her from being lonely and starving after her parents left her at the pastor’s front steps because they were unable to care for her during this horrible depression. Kate was swept away by the love and trust that Lorena gave and was determined to save and keep her until her natural parents could return.



In the meantime, grandfathers are trying to take Lorena away, there are emotional upheavals for the family with man-made problems. They re-find their faith and it grows stronger as this little family work so hard with the help of Aunt Hattie to find their way.




As a plus, Ms. Gabhart is working on a sequel to this novel so that her readers can find out what happens to Rosey Corner after Sister Angel ends.



I give this a 5 of 5 stars. The book is interesting, entertaining, and you fall in love with her very real characters, warts and all.

 


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