The Thorn Bearer by Pepper Basham

I shared with you awhile ago how much I enjoyed reading Pepper’s latest novel. Well afterwards I had the chance to read the first in a historical series that she wrote. Let me tell you this, I could not read this book fast enough! It is so powerful, so moving. Pepper has quickly become an author that I am going to keep track of. The thing about finding a series after it’s been out a little while……you don’t have to wait for the next book to come out!! I am going to be reading books two and three very soon 🙂

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About the Book

From the decks of the ill-fated Lusitania to the smoke-filled trenches of France, Ashleigh must choose between the forgiveness of her past, life in the present, and a Savior who can rescue her from them all. When her fiancé leaves her eight months before their wedding, the unexpected blow ignites a battalion of insecurities stemming from her father’s intimate betrayal. Her worst fears are confirmed – who could ever love a soiled woman? In an attempt to escape the shame and disappointment of her past, Ashleigh boards the ill-fated Lusitania to cross the war-torn waters of Europe. Much to her dismay, she isn’t traveling alone. Sam Miller is always making up for his best friend’s mistakes. Determined to help Ashleigh, he offers his compassion and protection as she ventures across a perilous sea. With the faint hope of renewing his lost love for Ashleigh’s sister, Sam never expects to find the woman of his dreams in his best friend’s former fiancé and his own childhood companion. As they travel across the Atlantic, neither is prepared for the life-altering and heart-breaking journey of their friendship. When the truth of Ashleigh’s past explodes in the middle of war and Sam rejects her, Ashleigh must decide if God is enough – or if the double weight of her betrayal and past will crush her life forever.

My Perspective

Oh my goodness this was such a powerful book! First there’s the fact that Pepper Basham is a beautiful story teller. She has such powerful messages woven into these wonderful storylines, that just speak directly to your soul. She brings a variety of emotions that grab you before you even realize you are a part of the story. From then on out, you are invested and you cannot let the story go.

I immediately connected with Ashleigh. She was such a strong person, so ready to put others needs before her own. She had a tragic and heart wrenching past, and struggled with forgiveness of the person who took her innocence away. On the outside, it appeared like it didn’t affect her, but in reality it did. I loved watching her character growth and how the author used the Lord whispering to her here and there. I think it’s something we can all relate to as well as learn from. God was frequently mentioned and implied throughout the book. It was not in a preachy kind of way, but in a way that you can understand, relate to, and reflect on.

The historical side was wonderful and yet tore at my heart strings. From the sinking ship, to the wounded soldiers, it was so mesmerizing and eye opening. When thinking about history you don’t think about the little detail like how people have to escape a ship that’s been hit, or all the wounded soldiers that need tending too. This brought it to the forefront and really captured my attention. There were moments where I held my breath as I was reading because I was so caught up in what was happening to the characters. And the fun, charming and witty relationship between Sam and Ashleigh was such a joy to read! They were comfortable with each other, and just complemented each other.

This book offers a promise of hope, forgiveness, and change. A change of the heart, change of the soul, and a change of circumstances. I cannot wait to see what lies ahead for these characters!! I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

About the Author

Pepper Basham

Pepper Basham is an award-winning author who writes romance peppered with grace and humor. She currently resides in the lovely mountains of Asheville, NC where she is the mom of 5 great kids, speech-pathologist to about fifty more, lover of chocolate, jazz, and Jesus. Her debut historical novel, The Thorn Bearer, released in May 2015 and has garnered awards such as Reader’s Favorites Award, finalist in the Grace Awards, shortlisted for the Inspy Awards, and a finalist in ACFW’s Carol Awards. Her second historical novel, The Thorn Keeper, released in Feb 2016 and her first contemporary romance, A Twist of Faith, released in April 2016 with a 4 star review from Romantic Times. In December 2016, her third historical in the Penned in Time series, The Thorn Healer – released with a 4 1/2 star review from RT and a Top Picks rating. You can get to know Pepper on her website,, on Facebook, or over at her group blog, The Writer’s Alley.
What author has grabbed your attention this year?

3 thoughts on “The Thorn Bearer by Pepper Basham

  1. The Thorn Bearer is excellent on audio!! I love to play it again and again! I smile when I start reading Pepper’s books, because I love her style of writing. So good!! Great review!

  2. Jessica!!! Thank you so much for this!!! I can’t believe I didn’t see your review until now!!!

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