Review of LOVE HELD CAPTIVE by Shelley Shepard Gray

Publisher: Zondervan | Published: October 10, 2017 Formats: eBook (320 pages), Paperback (320 pages), Large Print (Published: November 2017), and Audio | ASIN: B06XFR5VYR, ISBN: 9780310345473, ISBN: 9781683245766, and AUDIO ISBN: 9781543638196 | Series: A Lone Star Hero’s Love Story | Origin: NetGalley 


Cover: Courtesy of Zondervan through NetGalley



In LOVE HELD CAPTIVE by Shelley Shepard Gray, we travel back to 1867 where we make a crash landing in Texas.

The war is over and residents of these States attempt to settle into a new routine, but the ravages of the bloodshed still linger. People suffered and died, families are broken, memories battle with the conscience, minds thirst for peace, bodies bear many scars, and some wrongs become righted but not all. The nightmares for some are far from over, and many are not ready to pursue the dreams they held before it all began.

Ethan Kelly is often called by his former rank. However, this major is not able to focus on tomorrow as yesterday still haunts him. All of his wrongs in life seem alive, and his guilt creates its fresh wound. His problems worsen once he realizes that the woman in front of him is the same woman he hurt not long ago. Somehow, he must make his past toward her right. His identity to her remains a mystery. How much longer will it remain so? Can a battle-scarred man become a hero in her eyes?

Meanwhile, Devin Monroe is a former captain and Prisoner of War. His life, since his return home, remains quiet. He is not seeking out companionship while confronting his postwar demons head-on–until a chance meeting transports his emotions back to when he considers marriage in his future. This brief encounter brings Devin inside the challenges of courting a woman. It doesn’t take long for his lack of recent experience to cause awkward moments as he seeks out Julianne VanFleet.

Her demeanor proves that she is an honorable woman, but Julianne seems almost intimidated by her beauty. The shocking, brutal honesty she oozes brings memories back for Devin causing him much pain. While her revelations unveil a lack of his honesty to himself, she brings Devin to know he is familiar with a monster from the war.

Is it possible for him to approach any relationship without secretly judging another? Alternatively, could Miss VanFleet forgive his lack of backbone in admitting to his own faults?

After this war, trust needs to be re-earned by both men and women. Their broken hearts require mending as their past craves forgiveness but understanding must remain a constant companion to all as the engagement to right these wrongs still rage.

***This opinion is my own.***



Texas, in the year 1867, is where LOVE HELD CAPTIVE by Shelley Shepard Gray brings Major Ethan Kelly and Captain Devin Monroe from the Prisoner of War encampment back home.

The horrors of this battle and the wrongs that lead to it and that happened during it weigh heavily upon each man. While trying to rediscover life from these ruins, the nightmares and guilt strain them on a daily basis as they uncover some of the faces which match the wrongs, including Daniel Bushnell, one of their comrades. However, his reputation was evil inside war and worsens in its aftermath.

Each man faces the pains he has caused others by trying to right their wrongs. Once Bushnell causes more hurt on the innocent, these men struggle with what to do next!

However, the women these two meet on their way to forgiveness have had their own hard times and find trust of limited value. Their living conditions during the war were harsh, and they’ve met the worst of people in uniform. How can either dare be around a former officer, now?