Historical Fiction Book Review: Courting Misfortune

About the Book

Book:  Courting Misfortune 

Series: The Joplin Chronicles, Book 1 

Author: Regina Jennings 

Genre: Historical Fiction/Historical Romance 

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers 

Release Date: December 1, 2020

Click here to purchase a copy of this novel.

Publisher's Book Description

Calista York needs one more successful case as a Pinkerton operative to secure her job. When she's assigned to find the kidnapped daughter of a mob boss, she's sent to the rowdy mining town of Joplin, Missouri, despite having extended family in the area. Will their meddling expose her mission and keep Lila Seaton from being recovered?

When Matthew Cook decided to be a missionary, he never expected to be sent only a short train ride away. While fighting against corruption of all sorts, Matthew hears of a baby raffle being held to raise funds for a children's home. He'll do what he can to stop it, but he also wants to stop the reckless Miss York, whose bad judgment consistently seems to be putting her in harm's way.

Calista doesn't need the handsome pastor interfering with her investigation, and she can't let her disguise slip. Her job and the life of a young lady depend on keeping Matthew in the dark."

My Review

Courting Misfortune, by Regina Jennings, is the first book in The Joplin Chronicles series. Brimming with history, mystery, and originality, this novel is thoughtfully engaging and memorable. The bustling town setting, quirky-but-likable characters, and detailed plot ensure that this story is thoroughly surprising and truly moving from the first page to the last.

Ms. Jennings’ skill as a writer is wholly evident as she successfully brings to life late nineteenth century Joplin, Missouri and the surrounding mining camps. With flourish and insight, this setting infuses the plot with relevancy and intrigue.  And within this setting, the thoughtfully-layered story-line is as redemptive as it satisfying. 

The compelling story featured in this novel is wholly enriched by well-developed characters that are unique and utterly intriguing. They are flawed, authentic, clever, courageous, and determined. Their motivations, their faith, and their choices make them interesting and relatable. Even though they struggle through situations that strain their dreams, test their assumptions, and challenge their faith, the power of God’s grace and mercy abounds, nurturing fresh hope and unexpected opportunities. Courting Misfortune is also enjoyable for its strong focus on family and the many different ways in which family members support, uplift, and protect one another. 

Well-written and rich with descriptive detail, Courting Misfortune is a satisfying novel that touched my heart page after page. Ms. Jennings has certainly crafted an appealing, thought-provoking story that is worthwhile and meaningful. I eagerly recommend it to all readers. 


*I was given a copy of this novel by the publisher/author. A review was not required. The review I have written is voluntary and contains opinions that are entirely my own.

About the Author: Regina Jennings

“Regina Jennings is the winner of the National Reader's Choice Award and a finalist for the Christy Award, the Golden Quill and the Oklahoma Book of the Year Award. A graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University with a degree in English and a minor in history, Regina has worked at the Mustang News and at First Baptist Church of Mustang, along with time at the Oklahoma National Stockyards and various livestock shows. She lives outside of Oklahoma City with her husband and four children when not traveling the world.” --Biography from Regina Jennings’ author page on Amazon.com.

Click here to visit Regina Jennings' website.


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