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Customer Reviews for Realms Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2

Realms Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2

When Mary Lenora Murray was eleven years old, her mother and older sisters died of diptheria, leaving her with three younger siblings to raise. Her father, in his grief, poured himself into the farm, leaving the running of the home entirely to Mary. Then her childhood friend, Daniel begins to court her, promising her a life of riches and ease. But does Mary feel compelled to take care of her siblings at the risk of losing hope of a wonderful future with Daniel?
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Customer Reviews for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Review 1 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Hang onto your heart, Mary may steal it from you

Date:August 3, 2013
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wfnren
Location:St Cloud, FL
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mary Lenora Murray had loving parents but a very hard life. She knew that she was adopted but didn't know who her mother and father were or why they gave her away, she did know though that she was loved by her adopted parents. Mary had two older sisters, a younger sister and two younger brothers. Her mother and two older sisters died from cholera when she was eleven so she had to grow up fast and at a young age. Once her mother had died Mary had to take care of her father and siblings, her father was never the same and life was changed.
Daniel Winthrop came west in the same wagon train that Mary's family was in so they knew each other their whole lives, Daniel is 20 and Mary will soon be 18. Daniel gets permission from Kenneth, Mary's dad, to court Mary. After a short time he takes Mary on a Friday Surprise trip to Portland and when they return they find Kenneth laying in the field with a terrible cut on his leg. When they get him to the doctor, the doctor doesn't even know if he'll make it and if he does they might have to amputate his leg.
As Mary is caring for her father Daniel is falling deeper in love and has their future all planned out, Mary doesn't like what he plans so they have an argument and Daniel leaves in a huff. He is supposed to return so he can take her home to bathe, see her siblings and then return her to the doctor's office, but he never returns.
WOW! Mary's story is one that tears at your heart. She takes everything that is handed to her, and it's a lot, but keeps on going and giving her best for her family. She shows such strength for having to take over a household at such a young age with no resentment or anger. Sometimes maybe a little wishful thinking for some time for herself, but she pulls herself together and continues on with the life that she's been given.
I'm so glad I have the third book, "Catherine's Pursuit", so I can get started on it right now. All I can say is that if you get "Maggie's Journey" you might as well get the other two at the same time, that's what I did and I'm really glad.
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Review 2 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

As captivating as the first in the series!

Date:June 10, 2013
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Britt98
Location:Grand Prairie, TX
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mary's Blessing, the second book in the McKenna's Daughters series, continues the captivating tale of Angus McKenna's triplet daughters who were separated at birth. This book is just as good as the first in the series. It is filled with interesting characters, misunderstandings, stubborn pride, tragedy and love.
Mary lives a hard life with her adopted family. It wasn't always that way. However, after the death of her adoptive mother and two older sisters, Mary becomes the caretaker of a younger sister and two brothers with no real support from her father. He runs the farm but has just checked out of life. After years of this treatment, she feels rather hopeless about her future, until Daniel steps in and reveals his feelings.
Daniel has always lived a comfortable life with wealthy parents. He loves Mary and wants to court her, marry her, and provide her with a posh life. He plans to buy a big house for them and fill it with servants.
When tragedy befalls Mary's family once again, will the love she shares with Daniel be strong enough to survive? What is God's will for her life? Will Daniel learn to love and serve Mary the way God calls him to?
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Review 3 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

McKenna's Daughters series is a True Blessing!

Date:September 6, 2012
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Its About Time Mamaw
Location:Cleveland, Texas
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Ever since Mary Lenora Murray was eleven years old she has been sister, stand-in-mother and care taker of her younger sister and two young brothers. This was after her mother and two older sisters died. She has not just been the caretaker of the children but of all the household chores that had been taken care by of her mother's and older sisters.
Mary's father has disconnected himself from his family as if he no longer was a father other than the care of the farm and she was at least thankful for that. But it would nice to have someone to confide in and lean on when it came to the children and the house.
Mary has always none she was adopted but did not know the circumstances of the adoption or her birth parents. She knew her adoptive parents loved her deeply. Although her father grieved much over the death of his wife and two daughters Mary knew he loved her and her young siblings. She just would like to here some encouraging words from him.
When would she ever be able to have a life of her own with all she had in her present life? Her childhood friendship with Daniel seems to be turning into more than friends. She just did not know how to meld the two lives together. That of a future with Daniel and the life she had now.
Daniel knew he wanted to spend the rest of his life with Mary and give her all the things she deserved. He would prove to her he would be a responsible husband and provider. He would move her away from the farm and hire someone to care for the beautiful house he planned to buy in town.
This is how the story goes, this is not a fairy tale this is real life. The author writes a beautiful yet heart wrenching story of tragedy, responsibility, love and faith in God. God always has a plan and it is not always what we expect. Sometimes a tragedy can pull us away from God and sometimes it brings us closer. Life is not a bowl of cherries. If it were it would get mighty boring. This book is definitely not boring. I had to make myself put the book down so I could do what I needed to do.
Lena did not disappoint me with book two of Mckenna's Daughters.
I loved book one, Maggie's Journey, book two was just as good.
Can't wait to read book three, Catherine's Pursuit coming in 2013.
I highly recommend this book/series.
Disclosure
I purchased this book for my personal reading pleasure. I was in no way compensated for this review. It is my own opinion.
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Review 4 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Sweet romance from first to last page!

Date:August 8, 2012
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Dora
Location:North Carolina
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
From the first page to the last, Mary's Blessing is a sweet romance, the kind I love to settle back in my recliner for a few hours to read. While Mary suffers much grief in her eighteen years, Daniel lives an easy life by comparison. After knowing Mary since they arrived by wagon trail years earlier and admiring the way she cared for her younger brothers and sister, Daniel finally decides to court her.
Don't assume it will be clear sailing after that because Ms. Dooley really ramps up the conflict. Mary's family issues take front and center, and soon differences in how they want to begin their married life become insurmountable obstacles. Add in stress and fatigue, and things go south fast. At one point, I wanted to give Daniel a good kick in the pants, but he came around and vowed to show Mary that he'd changed. Not only did I enjoy cheering both main characters on to their happily-ever-after, but the secondary characters added so much dimension to the story. A great read! I look forward to reading the last triplet's story, Catherine's Pursuit.
Disclosure: I received this book from the author for a fair and honest review.
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Review 5 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Slow to start, captured my heart

Date:July 15, 2012
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Faye
Age:Under 18
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
An intriguing read, that was at times a bit tough to read, yet at the same time was hard to totally put down.
First I guess I ought to explain why it was tough to read. It was a bit hard to read because many of the elements of the story were just so terribly sad, and I felt so bad for Mary and her family and everything that they went through. Like with her adoptive father and how his wife's death effected him, it was so tragic!
At first I wasn't totally draw to this book because so many things just seemed to happy, but then everything happened and the book totally changed tone and gained depth. I really liked how Mary and Daniel's relationship got stronger through adversities.
The character who really stood out to me was Tony, because even though he was a side character, he was really well developed. Daniel was pretty great too, because he probably had the most growth of all the characters.
Overall this was a book that made me really excited to read the other books in the series, it was pretty well written and I liked how the characters grew. It was a book that was a story about a couple overcoming great obstacles and finding love.
I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
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Review 6 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A beautiful story of servanthood!

Date:June 16, 2012
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Heart2Heart
Location:Victorville, CA
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mary Lenora Murray has spent her whole life it seems trying to figure out just who she is. She learned early on that she was adopted and currently living with her father, Kenneth Murray and her three siblings. Her mother passed away along with her three sisters leaving her in the role as caretaker and mother at only 13. Looking at her life, she wishes her father, would step up and take on the responsibility at helping her care for her brothers, George and Bobby along with her sister Frances. But all he seems to do is poor himself into taking care of their farm and then coming in exhausted at the end of the evening with nothing but an appetite left for her. Mary knows that this will be her burden until the children are grown up enough to take on more of the responsibility and before that happens, she'll be too old to finally have a life for herself.
Daniel Winthrop has been Mary's childhood friend and as they both have grown, Daniel realizes he has more than just friendly feelings for Mary. He sees how hard she works carrying for her family and knows she would make the perfect wife for him. By marrying her, he could give her the life of luxury so she wouldn't have to work so hard any longer, he could provide her with servants to take care of the house, and fill their lives with love and a family of their very own. Now if he can only convince Mary of their future together.
When Mary learns of Daniels interest in being more than just her friend, she wonders if it's possible to begin a life for herself or will she always have to care for her family's needs before her own?
In the latest novel from Lena Nelson Dooley, Mary's Blessing is the second book in the McKenna's Daughters series and picks up perfectly with a brief introduction from book 1, which I loved. At first, I thought I had read this book before, but LOVED how Lena captured the beginnings of Mary's birth so that the reader can truly pick this one up as a stand alone and love it just as much as the first book.
In this one, we get to see how Mary is growing up after being adopted along the Oregon Trail by her mother, Melody and father, Kenneth. Now that Mary has lost her mother, she feels burdened and worn out by all that she has to do while trying to care for the house, the children and try to find a life for herself in there as well. She dreams of a day when she can begin a life for herself, but may soon realize that God has bigger plans for her than what she could ever believe is possible. Now she struggles at trying to find a way to make a relationship with Daniel work when difficulties keep on piling up on her shoulders and she soon learns that Daniel may not be the man she thinks he is.
I received Mary's Blessing compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and LOVED this one. Being a huge fan of the first book, I couldn't wait to see what happened to the little baby that the Murray's adopted. The reader will even get a sneak peek at the next book in the series as Mary learns more about the real family she was a part of along the Oregon Trail. This is a beautiful book about learning how to be a servant of Christ and more importantly how to maintain a love for doing it without being resentful. I rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and can't wait to read Catherine's Pursuit coming in 2013.
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Review 7 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Another Beautiful Masterpiece by Mrs. Dooley.

Date:June 4, 2012
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Teresa M
Location:West Columbia, SC
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
In this touching story of a beautiful young girl that has to take care of her family after their mother and older sisters have died, Lena Nelson Dooley has created a beautiful masterpiece. Mary Lenora Caine has known since a small girl she was adopted and when her mother was alive she always called Mary, “God’s blessing” but now years after her mother’s death Mary doesn’t really feel like that’s true, she feels as though no one cares about her at all. Even her father has been almost a stranger to her and her siblings since her mother died, leaving Mary to take care of her sister and brothers by herself. Feeling that no one cares anything about her, Mary starts to wonder about her birth parents and why they didn’t love her enough to keep her. Will she ever find the answers she seeks about her birth? Will anyone be able to convince Mary she is a beautiful young woman worthy of love?
Daniel Winthrop, a friend from childhood who has loved Mary for what seems like forever, has dreamed about the day he would ask Mary to be his wife. He knows how hard she works taking care of her family and he wants to make her life easier. Having received Mary’s father’s permission to court her, Daniel believes his dreams are finally going to come true, but when a tragedy strikes Mary’s family will he be able to stand by Mary? Or will Daniel do the unthinkable and leave her just when she needs him the most?
In this story Lena has painted a picture of what sometimes was typical life in the late 1800’s, especially the in lives of the people who paved the way on the Oregon Trail. I loved how this story pulled at my heart and how I couldn’t wait to see how it ended for Mary. I can hardly wait to read the third book in this McKenna’s Daughters Series, Catherine’s Pursuit to see how the mystery behind Mary’s birth turns out.
I want to say thanks to Mrs. Dooley for send ing me an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.
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Review 8 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A Tender Heartwarming Read!

Date:June 1, 2012
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dianaFlow
Location:W Columbia, SC
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
In Mary's Blessing, the second book in The McKenna's Daughters series, we are swept away to beautiful Oregon City, in the year 1885. It is here we meet our lovely red headed heroine, Mary Lenora Murray, who is fast approaching her 18th birthday. Mary knows she has been adopted, but doesn't know the circumstances of that fateful day when she was given to Melody and Kenneth Murray. Mary's adoptive mother, Melody, passes away when Mary is but eleven years old, leaving her father in the throes of grief from that day forth. Although he works the fields, Mary is left to the tending of her siblings, and the rest of the load that farming involves, and feels very much alone and unloved...until Daniel proclaims his feelings for her.
Twenty yr. old Daniel Winthrop, has had his eye on the comely Mary for years; ever since their families traveled to Oregon on the same wagon train, and is now ready to begin courting her. Mary is thrilled until a disaster occurs and Daniel becomes controlling, and eventually leaves her during her darkest hour. Will he come back, and if so, will Mary ever be able to trust him again? Will her father ever find peace for his troubled, heartbroken soul, and will Mary ever see herself as the blessing from God that she really is? When she finds out the circumstances surrounding her birth, what fact does she learn that leaves her astonishingly dumbfounded?
Lena Nelson Dooley paints another poignant, heartwarming story, rich in love and forgiveness, and realistic characters that will grip your heart. I loved the main characters because, though strong in character, they were not infallable. In many books the heroine is unrealistically brave and strong, but I like the fact that Mary cries when she becomes overwhelmed (that's what us women do best :)), and even complains to herself...another famous trait we women possess. :) I could totally relate to all of the characters, with their vulnerability, strengths, and wavering faith. With a strong spiritual thread throughout, as in all of Lena's books, and a satisfying conclusion, I can't wait to read the next book in this series. What a beautifully written story!
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Review 9 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Sad story for second triplet!

Date:May 31, 2012
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Stephanie
Location:upstate NY
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mary's Blessing is the second book in Lena's McKenna's Daughters series. In the first book, Maggie's Journey, we learn of a mother who dies giving birth to triplet baby girls. Their father, unable to care for them in his grief, chooses two families to adopt two of the babies. Book one and book two of the series are about the two adopted girls.
Mary's story is pretty sad. Not only is she taking care of her father and siblings despite her own grief, a tragic accident, followed by a misunderstanding with her suitor, Daniel, quickly plunges Mary back into despair.
Although the end has the spark of 'happily ever after,' the journey to get to that point was a pretty serious, somber tale.
The story was still enjoyable to read, despite some grammatical errors that bugged me -- including a huge whoops on the back cover!
Mary Lenora Caine knows she is adopted...
Nope. Caine was the last name of the book one triplet, Margaret! When I first saw that, I thought there was a mystery in the book where Mary's name was really Caine or she marries a Caine. No, just a missed mistake.
However, the errors weren't big enough to turn me off to the story. I couldn't help but empathize with poor Mary. I loved that the townspeople/church family were so willing to help Mary, and her humbleness to accept the help endeared me to her character.
Of the two books so far, I enjoyed Maggie's story more...but I can't wait for the final book to the series! The girls' father (I think!) was mentioned in Mary's Blessing and I can't wait to see how/what/when/if the girls are finally reunited!
*I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine.*
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Review 10 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Following The Triplets

Date:May 31, 2012
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MaureenT
Location:Syracuse NY
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Mary Murray has had a very hard life, especially since her Mother and older Sisters died when she was eleven. Her father had depended on her to raise her younger sister and two younger brothers. A lot of responsibility for a child, while father then looses himself in his grief.
Daniel has know Mary all his life and becomes smitten with her, ah you will think now someone is going to rescue her. Not quite that easy. There is a lot more tragedy and heartbreak on the way. There will be some questions answered and others still to be revealed.
This is such an enjoyable and quick read, that you don't want it to end....can't wait until next year when hopefully all will be revealed. In the meantime, enjoy this book, it is well worth it.
I received this book from First Wildcard Tours and the Publisher Realms, and was not required to give a positive review.
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Review 11 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

4.5 stars - like coming home to old friends

Date:May 30, 2012
Ever since I finished reading Maggie's Journey, the first book in the McKenna's Daughters series, I have been anxiously awaiting the chance to read the next book. Let me assure you that Mary's Blessing did NOT disappoint!
In Mary's Blessing, we are introduced to Mary Lenora Murray, the second of three McKenna sisters. Mary was given up for adoption at birth and has been taking care of her father and younger siblings since her adoptive mother passed away when Mary was thirteen. She thinks she sees a way out when a longtime friend asks permission to court her. When her father has an accident, she must figure how she can balance taking care of her siblings, nursing her father back to health, and following her heart.
Lena Nelson Dooley has written an incredible novel. I really felt a connection with Mary loved her relationship with Daniel. Her relationship with her father and siblings frustrated the fire out of me at first, but they grew on me. Even when I hated the things they did/said, I felt like I understood were coming from.
The church was such an incredible component of this novel too. I felt like this was a wonderful picture of how the church should be—helping one another through difficult times, challenging each other, seeing the bad and the good. The entire novel clearly demonstrates our need for God and our need to live in community with others.
At times I felt like the setting and characters were reminiscent of the TV show Little House on the Prairie and in a way it made me feel like I was coming home to familiar friends. I can't wait to read the conclusion of this fantastic series! [4.5 stars]
I received a free copy of this book from Charisma House and FIRST Wildcard Tours in exchange for my fair and honest review.
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Review 12 for Mary's Blessing, McKenna's Daughters Series #2
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Good story.

Date:May 20, 2012
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Michelle Sutton
Location:Arizona
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I really enjoyed this story and read it quickly. The writing was good and the style easy to follow, yet rich with language that evoked emotion. The prologue alone was enough to choke me up. Then the story launched into various dramatic situations that made me think about a few Little House on the Prairie episodes. Daniel was a sweetheart, but he had some maturing to do. I couldn't help pitying Mary's situation and how much responsibility she had, but at the same time I could see how much she needed her family to help fill that gap in her life that couldn't seem to ever be filled.
The spiritual and emotional ARC was well done for a number of characters including Mary's younger sister. I liked seeing her growth and also watching Daniel mature into a young man that could be trusted. The situation with Mary's dad was sad, but there was a lot of truth in what he said about our days being numbered. It's easy to forget that we won't all live to a ripe old age, but there is nothing we can do about that. Anyway, I liked watching this couple slowly rebuild their relationship, and witnessing Mary learning to trust Daniel again. It was a heartwarming story with a sweet ending. The best part was it never bored me but kept me reading. These days I am easily bored, so that's a clear sign that this novel is a good book.
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