Book Review

Book Review: The Thorn Bearer by Pepper Basham

“We are not promised an easy journey. A world filled with broken people will only produce broken hearts one way or another, but God lives inside of you – the mender of broken things. He has guided you through your life, and He holds you even now.”
TheThornbearer 500x750 (1)

Series: Penned in Time (Book #1)
Fiction, Romance, Historical
Vinspire Publishing
Publication Date:
May 7, 2015
Number of pages: 

From the Publisher:

“Ashley Dougall has a terminal disease and forgiveness is the only cure.

Ashley Dougall’s father stole her innocence, her selfish fiancé stole her heart, and unforgiveness is slowly stealing her life.  Drawn by the desire to help others, she tries to escape haunting memories and enlists her services as a nurse in war-torn Europe.  Along with her childhood friend and fiance’s brother, Samuel Miller, the fragile threads holding Ashley’s life in place one-by-one begin to snap. From the deck of the ill-fated Lusitania to the smoke-filled trenches of WWI, Ashley must choose between forgiveness of the past, life in the present, and a Savior who is willing to help her face them both.”

My Review:

If I could sum up my thoughts about this book using one word, it would be:


I was blown away!

I honestly don’t know how to describe the perfection of this novel.

I don’t.

I am at a loss for words!

The storyline! The characters! The themes! The plot twists!

I am in love!

But now I need to stop fangirling and focus on my actual review.

Wait. Before I forget – Here’s a fun fact:

This book’s paperback release date is the 100th anniversary of the Lusitania’s sinking. Isn’t that awesome?!

Now I can focus on my review.

But first…

There will now be a ten minute intermission. Book reviews are located in the lobby along with a coming soon list and other fun posts.

*ten minutes later*

Okay. I’m done.

Serious time.

Don’t look at me like that, I can be serious.


My actual Review 😉 :

A large portion of the book is set on the Lusitania,  the largest passanger ship (at that time) that sunk after it was hit by a torpedo.

Intense, right?

Pepper makes it even more intense than that with her plot, cliffhangers, and nail-biting descriptions. While reading the book, it feels like you’re actually on the ship with the characters. The story can seem deep, dark, and depressing but there’s truly quite a bit of lightheartedness and fun scenes!

Pepper has a gift of drawing you into the story and making you feel apart of it all. It’s truly amazing!

As for her characters, I want them all to come to life so I can give them big hugs and be their friends! Ashleigh is a strong woman who has to go through so much in her lifetime and is an incredible role model for women. Sam is an amazing man who has a heart of gold and such a sweet disposition. Then there’s Ashleigh’s friend, Jessica, who cracks me up! She and quite a few other characters add a bit of sunshine and humor to the book. I could go on and on about all the amazing characters that Pepper created! They’re all creatively drawn out and possess such depth, they seem so real.

Then there’s the main topic it deals with: sexual abuse.

Many people may cringe or turn away at those two words, but it’s a real-life issue and many people have become victims to it. This book opens your eyes to the pain and suffering that victims of sexual abuse endure day after day.

It also shows that even the Godliest people who seem like they have it all together, could have a darker past than you imagine or could be falling to pieces on the inside.

It honestly changed my perceptions of people and made me realize that everybody, no matter how put together they seem, has something in their life that they had to or are currently dealing with – and if that doesn’t say anything about the impact of this book, than I don’t know what does.

Lastly, The Thorn Bearer deals with themes like learning to forgive – which we know isn’t always the easiest thing – and trusting God with putting our shattered pieces back together, loving us, and being there for us no matter what we are enduring.

I have never read a book that possessed such depth and touched me as much as this one did.

Now, this is where you depart from my blog and go buy it for:


Your friend.

Your mother/grandmother/aunt/sister.

Your neighbor.

Your other neighbor.

That sweet elderly woman in church who dresses better than you do.

Your co-worker.

The mailman.

The man that mows his lawn at four in the morning.

Because there’s a chance that all of those people I just listed can relate to something in this book and may need this right now.

I sure did.


★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I give this book 5/5 stars for great themes, in-depth research, and a heart-touching storyline.

This novel is clean and doesn’t contain any swearing or bad language. *SPOILER* This book contains some kissing and brief romantic content, we learn that the main girl was sexually abused by her father for many years, and she hires a prostitute that decided to turn her life around and walk away from her sinful life.

I would recommend this to EVERYONE!


Find The Thorn Bearer on:



Barnes and Noble

Vinspire Publishing

Note: The Thorn Bearer ebook is only $2.99 as of right now!

Other Books by Pepper Basham:

A Twist of Faith (Coming Fall 2015)

The Thorn Keeper (Coming March 2016)

The Thorn Tender (Coming October 2016)

Connect with Pepper Basham:

Pepper’s Website

Pepper’s Facebook Page

Pepper’s Goodreads

*I received this book from Pepper Basham in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. Thank you, Pepper, for the privilege to review this book! *

*The Thorn Bearer cover borrowed from Goodreads* 


14 thoughts on “Book Review: The Thorn Bearer by Pepper Basham

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