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Beneath the Blackberry Moon: The Ebony Cloak (Creek Country Saga #3)

4.59  ·  Rating details ·  74 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
In the wilds of 1816 Florida, a beautiful slave is free game for depraved men. But for an honorable man, she is a military objective, an asset to be protected, a love that should never be pursued.

Milly’s pale skin provides her with special privileges, but every luxury comes with a command. And Milly is done yielding. On the run, she can pass for white only as long as no o
Kindle Edition, 386 pages
Published January 19th 2016 by Big Spring Press (first published November 30th 2011)
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Beth Erin
Apr 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Full review on 4/13/17

Love and war, prejudice and duty, people of all sizes, shapes, and colors… this story is a historical fiction lover’s dream!

Phillip Bailey is haunted day and night by his past horrors and heartache. Although I sometimes questioned his motives and character in previous books, the significant time spent in his perspective during this story won me over!

Milly is a beautiful, strong, and intelligent woman. She has suffered terror and sorrow few can compreh
Sarah Monzon
Jan 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Goodness! I feel like I could gush about this series and this author for forever and still not express how much I love these stories and how fabulous a writer I think April Gardner is. Talk about real characters, unique plot, diversity in all it’s beauty, history brought to life, all put together in a romantic page turner. Every Garner book is a must read.
Warring Spirits is just as enthralling--if not moreso--than the first book in the series, Wounded Spirits. I read it straight through. Gardner knows how to write with conviction so readers can't miss the compassion she has for the people and their struggles in this story. There is heart-felt love and tension written on every page. No opportunity to show God's heart for mankind was wasted. And unlike some stories where the conflict feels almost forced, in this series they are a natural result of ...more
Becky Van Daniker
Apr 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Where do I even begin?! April Gardner has done it once again by producing this gripping and beautiful story. This time the main focal character is Phillip and a runaway slave named Milly although some of our favorite characters appear and play important roles. We also meet some new characters whom I’ve already fallen in love with.

I’m excited to share with you about The Ebony Cloak because it stands out from most historical fiction novels. It’s rare to find a book that is set in Florida. Okay, I
Sep 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First posted on my blog, Legacy of a Writer.

Warring Spirits completely swept me off my feet! Revisiting characters from Wounded Spirits and discovering new ones, this next book in the Creek Country Saga is sure to win April Gardner new fans everywhere! It’s always a wonderful surprise when the second book turns out even better than the first (which was awesome to begin with! ;-), and that’s exactly what I discovered in Warring Spirits. That first scene drew me into this fantastic adventure along
Jan 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Creek Country Saga Gets Better

April Gardner defies sophomore syndrome like the pro she is. Her work just gets better and better. Readers of historic issue-laden fiction, especially of early nineteenth-century south-eastern Americana, won’t be disappointed.

Major Philip Bailey has nightmares, and no wonder. As a survivor of the horrific massacre at Fort Mims between the settlers and Creeks, Red Sticks, to be more specific. Wounded, scarred, and betrayed by the love of his life—to one of the enemy,
Jan 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Warring Spirits" transports the reader back to 1816 when owning slaves in the south was normal, but it was also quite normal for those slaves to dream of freedom and risk their life to gain it. Milly was different than most slaves, she could pass as a white woman, except for her hair which was a dead giveaway. The only comfort she ever had during her years as a slave came from her friend Isam, so when she heard the rumor that Isam had been sold they both decide to escape and head for the Negro ...more
Elaine Cooper
Nov 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The year is 1816 in the vast, unsettled, southern United States. Slavery is a way of life in the South and many of the Africans held in bondage on plantations have escaped below the border to a place called Negro Fort—their first taste of freedom from their masters. But the United States Army has been assigned to destroy the fort and recapture the slaves. It is here during this difficult military assignment that Major Phillip Bailey is forced to confront the painful memories of a previous war t ...more
Tracy Krauss
Aug 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This entire series is probably one of my all time favourites. Who can forget Totka from Book One? Somehow the author manages to sweep us along in an historical tale that is well researched but never seems expository. I loved this book and the entire series and have actually read it more than once! that's how good it is!
Rebekah Gyger
Sep 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
I have so much love for this series and how the author is able to depict the complexity of vastly different cultures interacting in a fluctuating time of peace and war. The Ebony Cloak further pushes these complex relationships between characters by stepping back from Totka and Copper Woman's story to focus on Captain Bailey, a white soldier, and Milly, a runaway slave.

My only regrets about this book are that I was reluctant to see Totka and Copper Woman only as side characters (I had hoped to r
Karen Hadley
Sep 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Phillip has made the army his career.
What he doesn't see coming is a
beautiful woman who is a slave who
longs for freedom. How can he make
this happen? Will she trust him?
Can their love survive the brutal
honesty of secrets they both
carry? Read the Book!
Aug 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
First, I just have to state that this author REALLY knows how to write body language, physical description and action of characters, and dialog! I literally could see the images in my head in wonderful 3D, it was that good; I don't know if I've ever read better, not even by Francine Rivers.

OK, so what did I really think? At first, like others, I was disappointed to (somewhat) leave Totka and Copper Woman/Adele behind and focus on Phillip, who had not been very likable, but I was soon sucked into
Jan 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Freedom isn't free. That's a lesson Milly knows all too well.

Full of action and adventure, love and racial prejudices, Warring Spirits is not a book to be missed. Even though I haven't read the prequel, I was able to figure out what had happened in the first book and how it effected Warring Spirits. Fraught with tension at every turn, and heart-rending choices, Warring Spirits is emotionally strong, in a way that will grip you until you read the last page.

Every single character was well develo
Feb 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
Thanks April Gardner for my review copy. I finished this book last night and as the book progressed I just couldn't put it down. We have a few stories happening in the one book which are all interconnected. The book starts with Milly and Isum escaping to Negro Fort in Florida, while Philip is part of the army marching to storm the fort and reclaim the slaves to return them to their owners. We also see the Creek Indians working with them to help which is interesting after having fought them in re ...more
Tracy Krauss
Jan 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Warring Spirits by April Gardner is superb. It’s one of those books that you really can’t put down once you’re into it. I read it in two days, basically picking it up whenever I had a spare minute – literally. It is the sequel to her novel Wounded Spirits, bringing closure to that book’s romance between a native man and a white woman, and introducing another unlikely pairing between an American soldier and a runaway slave. The series takes place in the early 1800s in the American south during a ...more
Jan 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: review-books
Warring Spirits is the second book in April Gardner's Creek Country Saga, but I felt it was great all on it's own. And since I haven't read the first book, I can say that I don't feel I was missing out having not read Wounded Spirits first.

With suspense, war, and romance, Warring Spirits was very enjoyable to read! I loved the characters and watching their stories unfold. I especially liked Phillip and True Seeker - I'd probably say those two were my favorite characters.

When I was nearing the
Apr 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The Ebony Cloak, part 3 of the Beneath the Blackberry Moon, is written by April Gardner. I just love the talent that this author shows us through her historical accounts with the fiction flare added to create books that just bloom with greatness!
My favorite character in this book is...Milly AND Phillip! Milly because she was such a brave woman...any way you looked at her, she was just the essence of braveness through all of the difficulties of life that were thrown her way. Phillip...well, he ha
Amanda Stephan
Oct 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I had the pleasure of reading this book in advance. April Gardner has a pen, and she knows how to use it! This book was excellent. If you like action, danger, heartache, and intrigue, this is a book for you. Set in the 1800's, follow her characters as they not only fight for their freedom, but fight their own inner demons as well. This isn't your typical historical fiction novel.

Warring spirits -

As soon as you pick up this book, you'll find yourself swept away by April Gardner's excellent story-
Kim  Gregory
Dec 17, 2016 rated it liked it
Something about this story felt familiar to me, but not all of it. By how long it took me to read you can see I had trouble getting into the story. I didn't like that we suddenly jumped away from Totka and Copper Woman's story even though we knew that they had found one another, we still didn't know if their story was going to work out alright. Halfway through the story I wasn't sure what was going to happen because the main thrust of the story was gone. I spent much of this story wondering wher ...more
Apr 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful conclusion to Beneath the Blackberry Moon! I love April's writing style and her ability to make history come to life, and she doesn't disappoint with this novel!

A compelling story of standing for what's right in a time when people were judged by the colour of their skin.
While this book is mainly about Philip and Milly, we also meet new characters and continue with Totka and Adela's adventures.

I highly recommend this book and am looking forward to reading more from this author.

I rece
Apr 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just finished reading WARRING SPIRITS by April W. Gardner.
WOW! What a profoundly moving piece of Literature!
It is a tremendous Historical Romance a man would probably enjoy as much as a woman.
There is plenty of action, adventure, drama, romance and suspense.
Set in the fore part of the 1800s it consists of wars, recuperation, change of heart, forgiveness,
racial prejudices, romance, and is cleanly written.
The author ties situations, time periods, and different characters together so creative
Steve Roach
Nov 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
April has improved as a writer since her first book, and she was pretty good to begin with. I don't normally read much historical fiction, and mainly read this one because April is a friend. That being said, I really enjoyed it. It was tightly plotted and gave me a very interesting look at a period of time I don't know much about. The characters were well-rounded and I found myself involved in their story. Overall an excellent sophomore effort.
Deanna Stevens
Apr 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016-read
This is nice continuation in the Beneath the Blackberry Moon series that answers my questions of what happened to some of the characters in the previous books. The history, trials and their faith bring out topics that will make you think about living through that war and what that era had to struggle through. I really enjoyed this book and thank the author for the copy to read and review.
Sep 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a wonderful story. I love how the author drew me into the story and that there was never a dull moment in this book.I was captivated from the first page until the last page. I loved all the characters and hope she gives True Seeker his own story very soon.
Jul 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A great ending and a longing for the next in the series!

I was thrilled with this book! Great action. The story was well told, I felt like I was there in the swamp and heat with Milly. No matter our race, we are all God's children, and that's sadly lacking in today's culture.
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APRIL W GARDNER writes Christian historical romance with a focus on our Southeastern Native Tribes. She is also a military wife and mother of two who lives in South Texas. In no particular order, April dreams of owning a horse, learning a third language, and visiting all the national parks.

You can find April at these locations:


More about April W. Gardner

Other books in the series

Creek Country Saga (4 books)
  • Beneath the Blackberry Moon: The Red Feather (Creek Country Saga #1)
  • Beneath the Blackberry Moon: The Sacred Writings (Creek Country Saga #2)
  • Drawn by the Frost Moon: Bitter Eyes No More (Creek Country Saga #4)
“A brusque whisper coaxed Phillip from slumber. Someone had called his name. The cot squeaked as he sat up and squinted at a featureless silhouette. “Who is it?”
“Rise. Quick. Bring your medicine maker.” The ragged voice belonged to True Seeker.
Tasked with keeping a watchful eye on Milly, the young man would come to Phillip at this hour for only one reason. He swung his legs to the ground. With one foot going into his trousers, he took a wide step across the narrow barracks and jostled Buck’s shoulder.
His friend was on his feet and half-dressed before Phillip left the building, alarm urging his feet to a gallop. No one need tell him which direction to go. He buckled his sword belt as he went. The scabbard slapped his leg with each footfall, bringing to mind a similar night not long enough ago. His stride lengthened.
This time, he would run Collins clean through.”
“For being so straight and sure, God’s path held quite the assortment of twists.” 1 likes
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