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To Win Her Favor

(Belle Meade Plantation #2)

4.28  ·  Rating details ·  3,088 ratings  ·  440 reviews
A gifted rider in a world where ladies never race, Maggie Linden is determined that her horse will become a champion. But the one man who can help her has vowed to stay away from thoroughbred racing for good.

An Irish-born son far from home, Cullen McGrath left a once prosperous life in England because of a horse racing scandal that nearly ruined him. He’s come to Nashville
Paperback, 352 pages
Published May 19th 2015 by Zondervan (first published May 12th 2015)
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Average rating 4.28  · 
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 ·  3,088 ratings  ·  440 reviews

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Carole Jarvis
May 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Reviewed at The Power of Words:

With To Win Her Favor, Tamera Alexander has just elevated herself into my list of top historical romance writers. This story uses the "marriage of convenience" plot that I greatly enjoy, yet raises it to a whole other level than what I'm used to. It has that perfect blend of historical detail, well-drawn characters, captivating storyline, and a love story that touched me with its tenderness, passion, and honesty.

The rich historical detail
Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls)
{{TO Those under the age of 15, I recommend you do not read this review or read the actual book as it is filled with marriage thoughts and actions through an arranged marriage. (read: not clean) TO everyone else interested in this book, I don’t recommend this book at all because of all the sexual content, which there is a lot of, this book has bedroom scenes and does not promote Philippians 4:8.}}

About this book:

“A gifted rider in a world where ladies never race, Maggie Linden is determined t
Maggie Linden knows she will never race her mare, Bourbon Belle, but she is still determined that her horse will become a champion in the annual Drayton Stakes at Nashville’s racetrack – the richest race run in America. Not only will this prove that Bourbon Belle can take top purse, it will also save Lindon Downs, Maggie’s home, from being sold at auction to the highest bidder. To give her this chance, Maggie’s father, aging and in ill health, yet full of wisdom, makes a deal with Irish-born Cul ...more
✨ Gramy ✨
Tamera Alexander's painstaking research into the people, places and times reveals a high level of realism. I listened to the audio version of 'To Win Her Favor' on Hoopla, which was not as long as the first installment of this series, accessed through the public library system. The narrator was Tavia Gilbert, who sounds different than she did in the first installment. The timbre and tone were so drastically different that I had to double check to make sure that it was not a different narrator.
Robin Lee Hatcher
To Win Her Favor is a beautiful love story, not to mention a story of faith that shines through in the darkest circumstances. From the very beginning, I lost my heart to Cullen and Maggie and yearned for the moment when they would lose their hearts to each other. Add to everything else a sleek thoroughbred named Bourbon Belle, and this novel quickly galloped its way onto my list of favorite books.
~ Robin Lee Hatcher, best-selling author of Love Without End and Whenever You Come Around
Mar 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
1/28/19 update: Fixed a confusing sentence that said the opposite of what I meant!!

I had SO MUCH FUN with this one. I very recently read A Beauty So Rare (Belmont Mansion #2), so I easily spotted cameo appearances. They were integrated so well! Sometimes when I read a standalone book in the middle of a series, I think to myself, “That is OBVIOUSLY a cameo appearance.” And it’s a little bit annoying. Not so in this book. In fact, I recommend reading this book after the previous books, even t
Heidi Robbins (Heidi Reads...)
This book captivated me from the beginning. The setting is not one I would normally be interested in- post-Civil War South, however the author brings the characters and landscape to life in a way that I can't help but be fascinated. I definitely enjoyed the marriage of convenience theme, and this story is now one of my favorites in that category. Maggie and Cullen are each caught between a rock and a hard place- Maggie because she will lose the family farm to auction, Cullen because nobody will ...more
Jun 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Another fabulous read by the talented Tamera Alexander! I have been a fan of hers since I read her first novel, Rekindled. To Win Her Favor is right up there at the top of my favorite's list. To start off, I really appreciate the "father knows best" aspect in this story. It's refreshing in a day and time where fathers are usually cast as "stupid". I also enjoyed learning more about horse racing. Lots of interesting facts. I don't usually like story's set during or around the Civil War because I ...more
If I wasn't so busy caring for my newborn and teaching school, to my other three children, I would have finished this book much sooner! This would make such a great movie. If it was a movie, I don't know what would be my favorite scene to watch though. It would be a toss up between Cullon walloping on Stephen Drake or watching Kizzy soar on that horse! Either way, the book is always better than the movie:) ...more
Mar 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The first word that comes to mind when I think of this novel is "passion." This word is displayed throughout the novel, and not just in reference to romantic passion. But let me tell you...Tamera Alexander had the romance sizzling more than ever!

Maggie's passion at the beginning of the novel is for her horse, Bourbon Belle. She and her father have sacrificed so much to be able to keep the well-bred horse, who Maggie is confident will win in the races. But Bourbon Belle is more than just a race h
Brooke Barenfanger
Oct 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
To Win Her Favor was everything I was expecting it to be. Even though it wasn’t my favorite, I still really enjoyed this book. The characters married for convenience, and fell in love afterwards. There is just something about a marriage of convenience in novels like these that I find romantic. And To Win Her Favor certainly was that!
The characters for this novel were well developed and not exactly perfect. Though, I do have to say that Cullen—Maggie’s husband—didn’t possess any flaws that I cou
Charity Andrews
May 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
In Tamera’s second Belle Meade Plantation novel, we are back to the races! In order to save the farm, an arranged marriage is in order. The question is, can these two find love? Set among the recovering South, after the Civil War, there is MUCH history here!! Racism is at an all time high and the people of the South are not happy when an Irishman decides to take up residence.

I know there has been talk about some of the scenes in this book. While I was surprised by the somewhat graphic nature of
Deborah Raney
Jan 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Tamera Alexander has done it again! To Win Her Favor is peopled with fascinating, richly-drawn characters that drew me into their very hearts and souls. Maggie and Cullen's story captures the drama and tragedy of the post Civil War era, but more importantly, it captures the humanity of those who triumphed after a dark time in our nation's history to rebuild lives marked by joy and anchored by faith.
Nicki Olsen
Mar 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing

*My Thoughts*

Last year, I had to pick 15 top books last year. No. Way. No way that's happening this year. So many fabulous books and 15 just won't cut it...especially since this one could easily take a few spots all on it's own!!

The characters and plot line were AMAZING!! I'm already a sucker for arranged marriages (NO, I don't want one but I love STORIES about them ;). The relationship between Cullen & Maggie grows and changes throughout the bo
Tressa (Wishful Endings)
To Win Her Favor may be my favorite book from Tamera Alexander to date. There were so many emotions that were pulled from me as I read this story. This was such a turbulent time in the South's history. The way people were treated... It just galls me. Then there were all these families who had lost so much and just kept on losing even after the war. Maggie and her father were in the middle of it all. Then to have a woman, Maggie, who grew up knowing one world, one life, to be faced with something ...more
Apr 30, 2015 rated it did not like it
Until now Tamera Alexander has been a christian fiction author that I would recommend to any teen or adult without hesitation. Masterfully written historical fiction that while it contains an element of romance is clean and tasteful. Well. Not so much this book. I am shocked and disappointed by some of the more intimate bed scenes in the book. I know they are married but I do not need to know about ANYTHING that happens when they are NAKED! Give me a break! Occasionally in christian fiction ther ...more
Cara Putman
May 10, 2015 rated it really liked it

In To Win Her Favor, Maggie Linden finds herself married to Cullen McGarth as the only way to save her family's storied farm and keep her amazing thoroughbred. Cullen has left Ireland and England behind, only to be confronted with intense prejudice in genteel post Civil War Nashville. The two have to choose whether they can make their marriage more than a business arrangement. The thread of prejudice and running from the past while someone else wants to embrace a different past brings a poignant
Oct 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2016
Happy sigh. Another delightful read from Tamera Alexander. She speaks my language.

To Win Her Favor is about Cullen and Maggie and the pervasiveness of racism in Tennessee in the late 1800s. The author paints a descriptive picture of the plantations near Nashville as well as the sport of horse racing. I love how she incorporates characters from her other novels into this one.

I look forward to the third book in the series.
Carrie Schmidt (Reading is My SuperPower)
Tamera Alexander has done it again - spun history, romance, and characters into a story so rich you might be tempted to stick it in a vault for safekeeping. Except read it first. And then don't stick it in a vault because it's just a book and people might think you're crazy.

Her perspective on the history of the time period is captivating and vivid, at times shocking in its reality, but ever full of reminders that for all the evil and heartbreak present in mankind at any given moment there are a
Mar 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
To Win Her Favor by Tamera Alexander is an engrossing Christian historical novel, and I was blessed to receive a copy. It is the second book in the Belle Meade Plantation novel series, but works well as a stand alone. I have not read the first novel, but I intend to.
Maggie Linden is a born rider and it is her dream to enter her horse, Bourbon Belle into a prestigious race. Her father, Gilbert Linden, recognising that he is in ill health, wants to see his daughter married, and secure on the Linde
Susan Snodgrass
Jun 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I own every single book Tamera Alexander has ever written. She is, and will remain, one of my favorite authors. Tamera never, in my opinion, sits down and just writes a fluffy little Christian novel. No, she does impeccable research and takes her time, writing a book that resonates with the mercies and grace of God. She creates characters that will remain with the reader long after the book is closed. This one was no exception, either.

I personally feel this is Tamera Alexander's best book EVER!!
The Overweight Bookshelf
Apr 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Full post here:

The American South is renowned for its heritage of gentility, manners and decorum, but during post-Civil War Reconstruction era its legacy was far more nefarious. Men and women whose traditions and ideals were stripped from them often along with their fortunes and livelihoods looked to blame the “other”: the freed slaves and Irish immigrants. Deep rooted racial hatred produced lynching mobs and saboteurs that hid behind cowardly white hoods
Feb 20, 2015 rated it did not like it
First of all, I need to state that I didn't finish this book completely. I got 68% through, and I just couldn't bring myself to finish it. Maybe because I started this novel with high expectations because a good friend of mine told me this is her favorite author.

I didn't love the main characters. They were well written and full of personality, but they didn't click with me. I take that back. Maggie's father was great, and I wish he was in more of the novel. Maggie seemed very childish and immat
May 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! It is full of complex characters with faults to overcome. The life lessons that Maggie must learn in this story are many, and she grows so much through the whole novel.

The setting of post-civil war Nashville is the perfect place to showcase the disparity between the classes, as well as highlight the ignorance and prejudice against the newly freed slaves and Irish immigrants. The author did a very good job of exposing the danger and trials these people faced, while not allowing
Jocelyn Green
Well-written, lots of twists and turns, interesting subplots woven through the main story. Enjoyed it very much, even though I wanted to throttle the heroine several times (early in the story).
Jun 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
To Win Her Favor
This book is definitely for the married folks. But it being so detailed shows the reality of married life. And how their dedication to what is right led them to the true affection and love fascinated me.
The author on this book beautifully and realistically described the harsh time of prejudice and discrimination. The time of thoroughbred racing and how one man went against it all and succeeded! This book proves that following God and what is good and right, though will always be
Crystal Carney
May 07, 2015 rated it did not like it
I was shocked to see a Christian author going the route of writing books that are explicit and not clean. I've read a few of Tamera Alexander's books in the past and they are so awesome and full of history that I would normally recommend..but this book has just gone a bit too far. Just because it's true to life doesn't mean it can't be written in a less graphic way. I am quite disappointed in this book, and if Alexander keeps writing like this, I won't be reading anymore of her books.

Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful! Tamera Alexander has done it again! She truly never disappoints. To Win Her Heart was a beautifully written and emotionally gripping story that kept me turning the pages late into the night.
Apr 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
This was the second of the Belle Meade series--which is meant to be read alongside the author's Belmont series (that I have recently finished) because they are all set near post Civil War Nashville, Tennessee with the characters occasionally crossing over for cameo appearances in books they aren't featured in--and was just as good as the first novel of the series. In any case, I really loved this historical novel. It was a complex, sweet story, and I enjoyed the characters. I look forward to fin ...more
Mackenzie Carol
Jul 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
To Win Her Favor is the second book in Tamera Alexander’s Belle Meade Plantation series, coming after To Whisper Her Name. I’ve always enjoyed everything Tamera writes, so it’s always a good day when I get to read one of her books, and this novel was no exception. I have also for some reason always loved the kinds of stories where the marriage comes first and the love comes later, so I was really excited to discover that To Win Her Favor fit that description.

When I first started this story, I wa
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Nov 19, 2014 02:33PM  
¿Por qué no una traducción al Español? 1 1 Oct 22, 2014 03:27PM  
Translation into Spanish, why not? 1 1 Jul 08, 2014 08:14AM  

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Tamera Alexander is a USA Today bestselling author and one of today's most popular writers in the inspirational historical fiction genre. She and her husband live in Nashville, Tennessee, not far from the Southern mansions that serve as the backdrop for six of her award-winning novels. ...more

Other books in the series

Belle Meade Plantation (3 books)
  • To Whisper Her Name (Belle Meade Plantation, #1)
  • To Wager Her Heart (Belle Meade Plantation, #3)

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