Book Review: A Rebel Heart

28 Jun

Five years after the final shot was fired in the War Between the States, Selah Daughtry can barely manage to keep herself, her two younger sisters, and their spinster cousin fed and clothed. With their family’s Mississippi plantation swamped by debt and the Big House falling down around them, the only option seems to be giving up their ancestral land.

Pinkerton agent and former Union cavalryman Levi Riggins is investigating a series of robberies and sabotage linked to the impoverished Daughtry plantation. Posing as a hotel management agent for the railroad, he tells Selah he’ll help her save her home, but only if it is converted into a hotel. With Selah otherwise engaged with renovations, Levi moves onto the property to “supervise” while he actually attends to his real assignment right under her nose.

Selah isn’t sure she entirely trusts the handsome Yankee, but she’d do almost anything to save her home. What she never expected to encounter was his assault on her heart.


Beth White‘s day job is teaching music at an inner-city high school in historic Mobile, Alabama. A native Mississippian, she writes historical romance with a Southern drawl and is the author of The Pelican Bride and The Creole Princess. Her novels have won the American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award, the RT Book Club Reviewers’ Choice Award, and the Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award. Learn more at


My Impressions:

I have been a big fan of Beth White’s fiction for a long while now. Whether contemporary or historical, if she wrote it, I read it! Her newest novel, A Rebel Heart, did not disappoint. Set in Mississippi in the years following the Civil War, this book includes a sweet romance against the backdrop of a changing South. I loved it and give it a recommended rating.

As the author mentions in the notes to readers, Reconstruction was a difficult time for the South. Once prosperous families were beset with hard times, and those who finally gained their freedom suffered exploitation and continued prejudice. I applaud White for setting her novel in the midst of this time period. She certainly did her homework — economic, political, and societal issues are woven seamlessly throughout the story. Both hope and desperation are present with the inclusion of characters looking forward to a new life and those who want to prevent progress even if it means destruction. There is a dark side to A Rebel Heart, but those parts only highlight the right path taken by main characters Selah and Levi. Selah is fiercely loyal to her family and feels the weight of providing for her two sisters. Levi has endeavored to do the right thing throughout his life, but regrets some of the actions he had to take in a time of war. The past taints their relationship, but their dependence on God allows for a future. Towards the end of the book, Selah ponders what is required of her and determines that justice, mercy, and humility are what God commands. I loved that Selah, a daughter of a plantation owner, knows the truth and determines to live her life according to God’s principles, seeking to bring reconciliation in whatever small way she can. As for the the sweet romance between Selah and Levi, it proceeds in a most satisfying way. 🙂

A Rebel Heart is a well-written historical romance that combines wit and wisdom in an entertaining and thoughtful read. There are two more Daughtry daughters, so more great reading is on its way. Can’t wait!

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase, click HERE.

(Thanks to Revell for providing a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

One Response to “Book Review: A Rebel Heart”


  1. Top 10 Tuesday — Best of 2018, Part 2 | By The Book - July 10, 2018

    […] A Rebel Heart by Beth White […]

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: