Blog Tour for Sweeter Than Birdsong by Rosslyn Elliott @rosslynelliott

Sweeter Than Birdsong

Rosslyn Elliott
The Saddler’s Legacy, Book 2
Historical Fiction
Buy the book: Here

Back of the book:

In Westerville, Ohio, 1855, Kate Winter’s dreams are almost within reach. As the first woman to graduate from Otterbein College, she’ll be guaranteed her deepest wish: escape from the dark secret haunting her family. But with her mother determined to marry her off to a wealthy man, Kate must face reality. She has to run. Now. And she has the perfect plan. Join the upcoming musical performance—and use it to mask her flight.

Ben Hanby, Otterbein College’s musical genius, sees Kate Winter as an enigmatic creature, notable for her beauty, yet painfully shy. Then he hears her sing—and the glory of her voice moves him as never before. He determines to cast her in his musical and uncover the mystery that is Kate. Still, he must keep his own secret to himself. Not even this intriguing woman can know that his passionate faith is driving him to aid fugitives on the Underground Railroad.

A terrifying accident brings Kate and Ben together, but threatens to shatter both their secrets and their dreams. Kate can no longer deny the need to find her courage—and her voice—if she is to sing a new song for their future.

A stirring novel of hope and faith inspired by real events—from the author of Fairer than Morning, winner of the 2011 Laurel Award.


About Rosslyn Elliott:
Rosslyn Elliott is the award-winning author of Fairer than Morning, the first in the Saddler's Legacy series. She holds a B.A. from Yale University and a Ph.D. in English from Emory University. Her study of American literature and history inspired her to pursue writing fiction. Elliott lives in Albuquerque, where she home schools her daughter and works in children's ministry.
For more about Rosslyn, visit her website:

My thoughts:
I read Rosslyn’s debut novel, Fairer than Morning, last year and absolutely loved it. When I picked up Sweeter Than Birdsong, I wondered if she could do it again…and she did! Quite frankly I think I actually liked this second book in the series even more than the first.

One of the things that is important to me in recommending a second book (or subsequent books) is that they have the ability to be read as a stand-alone. In my opinion this one can be read without reading the first in the series. 

Sweeter Than Birdsong picks the storyline up several years after Fairer than Morning ends. One of the main characters is Ben Hanby who is the grown son of Ann and William Hanby. The story revolves around Ben and Kate with the rest of the Hanby family as background characters. The author does an excellent job of giving you enough information from the first novel for you to know what is going on but not so much that you feel like the first book is being rehashed.

The storyline is about Ben and Kate’s budding relationship, but it includes their activities in the Underground Railroad. I always find that subject fascinating. So many people were willing to take such crazy chances with their own lives in order to provide freedom for others. It is a sad chapter in our country’s history, but the bravery of those that set out to change the course of history inspires me.

There are two bonuses in this book. The first is a section called History and Fiction. In this section the author describes what history is and what she has taken liberties with. The second bonus is the Reading Group Discussion Questions that are included. Such a major time saver for book clubs!

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  1. Thank you so much for this thorough and encouraging review! I appreciate it that you described the Reading Guide questions too. I do think they're useful for book groups. I'm so glad you enjoyed the novel--it's fascinating to me how people react to it compared to Fairer than Morning.

  2. How great that you enjoyed the second book as much as the first, if not more! Too often, the reader gets let down after loving the first installment in a series.

    I like that the author included the section making clear which parts are historically accurate. That is sometimes an issue for me when I am reading a novel about a historical event or time period with which I am not familiar -- it will bother me if I'm not sure what is real and what isn't.


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