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The Preacher's Promise

(Home to Milford College #1)

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  222 ratings  ·  45 reviews
1866 – Oberlin, Ohio

Devastated by her father’s death days after her triumphant graduation from Oberlin College, Amanda Stewart is all alone in the world. Her father’s unscrupulous business partner offers her an indecent proposal to earn a living. Instead, to fulfill a promise she made to her father, she resolves to start a school to educate and uplift their race. Sorting t
Paperback, 251 pages
Published July 27th 2014 by Liliaceae Publishers
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4.22  · 
Rating details
 ·  222 ratings  ·  45 reviews

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Jul 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review-copy
The Preacher's Promise is a very sweet story that takes place following the Civil War. During this time African Americans in the South are finding themselves with new freedoms and opportunities that they have never had before; however, they are still living under the prejudice of the South. This is the case in the town of Milford. The town has sent a missive to the North requesting a teacher (their first) for the new school house that is being built. Unbeknownst to them, the man who they've reac ...more
Michelle Styles
Oct 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you are interested in American history at all, you will enjoy this book as it opens a window into an oft-overlook aspect of history -- the African American experience in Georgia during Reconstruction.
Although the relationship between Amanda, the college educated Northerner who grew up believing she was free and Virgil, the former slave who had to work for his freedom but then in doing so failed to save the woman he loved is an important element of this story, this story is more about Virgil'
Victoria Bylin
Apr 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018
Some historical romances use history as wallpaper, meaning the story itself is more a reflection of modern times than the historical framework. Other historical romances bring history to life in a way that addresses the past, speaks to the present, and challenges us to think about the future. The Preacher's Promise falls firmly into the second camp. In short, I loved every word.

About the history . . . this story leaps off the page. You can see it, hear it, and feel it in your marrow. The author
Liz Mc2
Mar 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars rounded up. Well-drawn characters and setting. I liked the romantic and other relationships and the effective shifts between hero/heroine point of view. The writing style didn't entirely work for me.
Jaclyn Loschiavo
I DO NOT read inspies generally, but I couldn’t turn down the chance to read a romance set in Reconstruction era Georgia. There’s TONS of Jesus in this, but it felt very authentic to the time and characters, which is not always the case in historical inspirationals. Plus, I really think the religiosity helped keep the book light in a time period that could have definitely turned depressing (given how Revonstruction turned out for Freedmen). This was a nice, short read for me to pick up in betwee ...more
Jul 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A Good Read

This book captured my interest and I couldn't put the book down. The Love between Amanda & Virgil was rare and a sweet message of how love happens unexpectedly. I can't wait to read the next part of the series.
The Preacher's Promise (Home to Milford College Book 1)

The story of lawyer Lawrence Stewart's only child, a daughter named Amanda (Mandy) and Virgil Smithson, the town mayor, smithy, and preacher 🚹. It tells about their first meeting when she arrived in Milford, GA. Their courtship kept me chuckling. Now, Virgil is a hardworking southerner. Quite antiquainted in his thinking. Miss Amanda was an Oberlin college gratuate, outspoken young 🚺 dealing with the ole ways of the folks living in Milford
Jul 01, 2018 added it
I don't usually read inspirational novels, but I met the author a couple years ago at an RT, and that beautiful cover stuck with me, so I bought the book. Also, I do try to read outside my subgene in romance.

This is a lovely, hopeful, gorgeously written story set in a time and with history I really know nothing about because the US school system is crap at teaching anything but white history, especially in the north.

I was very grateful that I read it.
"The Preacher's Promise" is a very entertaining tale set in Reconstruction Era Georgia. With some interesting characters, this is another book which I found hard to put down once I started. I look forward to reading the other books in the series.
Sally Kilpatrick
Warning: once you start this book it will not let you go.

I had taken it with me somewhere and left it in a bag which I found while cleaning my room. Mind you, I'm supposed to be reading RITA books, but I opened this one up and got hooked. It's one of those books where you'll tell yourself you'll just read another few pages and then look up 50 pages later and realize you're late for an appointment.

Amanda Stewart (daughter of the protagonists from The Lawyer's Luck) is now an orphan with two optio
Mar 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Preacher's Promise is set in Reconstruction Era Georgia and it paints a familiar picture of the gentile south, shaped by recently abolished slavery. Amanda Stewart, free woman and recent graduate of Oberlin college, has recently lost her father and simultaneously discovered that she has been left destitute. She could've done any number of things at this point, things that could have put her in danger, but she immediately took on a job as a teacher. I loved Amanda. Huguley did an amazing job of g ...more
Parker Cole
Jun 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The book definitely lived up to its promise from the excerpt. I absolutely loved it. The complexities of the characters, the conflict of the Reconstruction era, the clash against tradition and new ways, come together to build a story filled with multi-layered stories.

Amanda is the Northern free woman who needs to escape her father's law partner. When she comes to Milford, she's independent, free, educated, and blazing with her view of things.

Virgil is slave turned freeman and also the Mayor of M
Jul 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book! I do not normally read anything in the romance category, but this book was so much MORE! There were great spiritual truths hidden within these pages like little golden treasures. I found myself looking for the nuggets! These characters were richly developed, warm and genuine. They were people with flaws, but a desire to serve a great and mighty God who values us in our brokenness. This book is very well written, creative, and holds a persons interests. There were very real thr ...more
Aug 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I'm not really a romance reader or a Christian romance reader specifically because Christian romance can be way too predictable. This book did not follow that "someone has to get saved by the end" plot line and I was grateful. I do love historical fiction. This book was very well written and kept my interest from start to finish. Thank you Piper for introducing me to reconstruction era Georgia.
Katherine Coble
Dec 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a terrific book. It's a great story with characters who are truly interesting.
Laura Trentham
Nov 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Loved how the author weaves in parts of history that aren't common knowledge with a beautiful love story.
Leigh Kramer
Apr 03, 2018 rated it liked it
This book was so unexpected! For one thing, I thought it was historical romance and it turned out to be inspirational romance, which is probably the only romance genre I don’t like. BUT. It takes place in Reconstruction Era Georgia and this setting was FASCINATING. All the more so because the heroine is from Ohio and learning the ways of the South and because the plantation mistress is still heavily involved in the lives of her former slaves and sees herself as a Good Person. As if that’s not en ...more
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This novel is just the right mix of romance, inspiration, and history. Shortly after Amanda Stewart’s graduation from Oberlin College in Ohio, her father dies, leaving her an orphan. According to her father’s law partner, there is no inheritance. Amanda finds correspondence indicating that her father had planned to start a school in Reconstruction Georgia and to go there to teach formerly enslaved children. Amanda goes in his place. There she meets the Virgil Smithson, Milford’s mayor and blacks ...more
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
With only their faith in Gods plan.

Although laws changed the hearts and minds of man took much more. For an educated woman left mourning and penniless the letter seemed a miracle. It was for many more than just her. Yet their trials were not passed. The importance of understanding the weight carried by brave souls like these... Knowledge of history empowers the youth of future generations.
Jul 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great period piece. The love story was well done and believable.

It's not always part of the story or it's done in a crude manner. It made me think about what education or lack of, can mean to a person's life.
Sep 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
When historical facts blend seamlessly with captivating fiction, you get, The Preacher's Promise. Well done!
Nov 03, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: romance
3.5 Really interesting story with solid characters and plot.
Sherida Stewart
Sep 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A sweet romance with strong characters and a vivid setting!

This is a sweet romance showing the strength of two people becoming greater than themselves as they discover their love for each other.

After having her inheritance stolen by her father's partner, Amanda Stewart arrives in Milford, Georgia, to take a teaching position at the new school under somewhat false pretenses. Preacher Virgil Smithson holds a secret he doesn't want his townspeople to know. Amanda has no place to go, and Virgil need
Chanta Rand
Nov 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was a sweet romance. The author did a great job of blending historical facts with vivid imagery.

Virgil Smithson is the mayor, blacksmith, and preacher of a town called Milford. Good Lord, that man has plenty of work to do! He writes to a man named Lawrence Stewart to teach the newly freed slave children. There's only one problem: Mr. Stewart died a few months earlier. So, his daughter, Amanda comes in his place. Destitute, and believing she's been swindled by her father's law partner, Amand
Feb 10, 2016 rated it liked it
3.5 stars.

Well, I bought a book and read it on the same day. Success! I've found another author who writes historical romances about non-white people, and this makes me happy. I liked this story about a teacher and preacher finding their way with one another. Amanda was the teacher, who'd been protected from the harshness of slavery. Still, she wasn't afraid to make her way in the world, in a way she wanted. Virgil, a preacher and the mayor of Milford, took a while to grow on me. He was a bit ha
Carol Burnside
I began this series with Ms. Huguley's prequel (The Lawyer's Luck) which entices the reader to learn more about her Milford College characters, so I continued the journey with The Preacher's Promise.

Ms. Huguley's voice shines through in this longer work which features Amanda Stewart, the daughter of the couple in The Lawyer's Luck, and Virgil Smithson, a post Civil War black mayor who takes his job seriously. A female teacher isn't what Virgil expects and certainly not one with such airs and fr
Belle Calhoune
Sep 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Preacher's Promise by Piper Huguley is a wonderful historical romance book. From the very beginning, the reader is transported back in time to the Reconstruction Era and introduced to a fiery and intelligent heroine. Having read the prequel, The Lawyer's Luck, I immediately smiled in recognition at her introduction. In many ways the heroine, Amanda, and the hero, Virgil are complete opposites. Amanda is refined and educated while Virgil is a blacksmith/town Mayor who lacks an education. When ...more
Feb 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Amazing debut novel that takes an entirely different look at the post Civil War South. I learned a lot, including that this time period is called the Reconstruction Era. Loved the fresh perspective of a former slave and free Northerner. Virgil is so closed and prickly. Pride and insecurity battle for prominence as he buries his attraction to the unexpectedly female school teacher. As far as welcoming committees go, he's the least friendly of them all. But Amanda has nowhere else to go and she's ...more
Laura Cushing
Feb 18, 2015 rated it liked it
As an atheist, I'm probably not the target audience for this. In fact, if it had been categorized as Christian Romance instead of Historical Fiction, I wouldn't have picked it up. There's way too much of characters relying on 'God's will' for this or that instead of making their own decisions. There's also some awkward writing (dusky maiden? tinies? really!), but the characters and the plot were interesting enough that I made it through.

An improbably 'these characters must get married because X
Aug 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A stellar cover, an excellent book description, and a popular 2014 Amazon Breakthrough Novel quarter-finaling contest excerpt are evidence award-winning writer Piper Huguley's first book in her Home to Milford series is something special. Rich descriptions, plot twists, and engaging characters fill this thoroughly enjoyable novel set in a time and place not often explored. Whether you read this book because you enjoy romance, like exploring our country's history, love reading books with diversit ...more
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