Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Jazz Age Fiction Guide Me Home by Connie Cortright

Guide Me Home  Book one of the Grace Alone series
Connie J Cortright

ISBN 978-0996844109
Milk Door Publications
November 5, 2015

Buy on Amazon 

About the Book
What comes to mind when you hear the 1920s? Flappers? Jazz? Speakeasies? Bobbed haircuts? Cloche hats? Roaring Twenties?
In 1926, this answer wasn’t so simple for a Christian school teacher. A young, naïve Emma Ehlke left her family’s Wisconsin farm and took up a new teaching post at a parochial school in Racine. Excited by the prospect of leaving her dodgy rural life, she looked forward to experiencing life in the Jazz Age. Emma soon fell under the charms of her dashing neighbor Freddie, who offered to be Emma’s guide to the exciting adventures ahead. Under his guidance, she experienced a life she’d only dreamed about.
However, she didn’t take into consideration her actions in light of her new career. Newly ordained and single minister, Pastor Neil Hannemann was left to deal with Emma’s impetuous actions as she attempted to join the Jazz Age. He longed to take her under his wing, but not like Freddie! He was forced to confront Emma about her naïve decisions and pointed out to her that a Christian’s life in the Roaring Twenties should be totally different than how she was acting. Under his shepherding, Neil attempted to guide her home by the godly course.
Emma found herself torn. Should she choose the novelties and excitement offered by Freddie, or the faithful path on which Pastor Neil wanted to lead her?

My Review
Cortright’s fiction explores a side of the excitement of the Roaring Twenties that is often neglected. How does the community of faith respond to the exuberance and overindulgence of an era of good times?
Newly adult Emma Ehlke, fresh from college with her teaching degree under her arm, leaves home for her first job in a new community. She soon learns how classroom preparation and the real world meet only through experience. She also realizes how much she has to learn about the real world and how to handle the opinionated members of her Lutheran congregation. When her neighbor begins a carefully crafted seduction, Emma takes much of the story to learn the truth of the necessity of relying on God first, her gut and conscience always, and the people who have her best interest and her true heart in mind, forever.
Emma’s neighbor, Freddie, might be the admirer her self-esteem preens for, but the man whose admiration grows in her soul proves that true love might just lie nearer than next door.
Told in multiple viewpoints with delightful historicity in a familiar community in Racine, Kenosha, and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Cortright’s multi-layered historical romantic fiction explores the reliability of true faith and friendship, the heart and spirit of an exciting period of time, and the nature of unconditional love.

About the Author
Connie Cortright has been a history buff all her life, reading biographies and history since grade school. Naturally, when she considered writing a story, her first thoughts turned toward historical fiction. Her novels are set in America's Midwest and reflect her own Wisconsin farming roots. Snippets of her childhood experiences pop up in her stories. Her life has been the fulfillment of her girlhood dreams: becoming a Lutheran school teacher, marrying a pastor, and having lots of children. Her life has taken her to both coasts (California and New Jersey) as she followed her pastor-husband in his service to various churches with their four sons.

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