Courageous Journey: Walking the Lost Boys’ Path from the Sudan to America by Ayuel Leek Deng, Beny Ngor Chol, and Barbara Youree is a dramatic true story of how Ayuel and Beny, as small children, survived the destruction of their villages in Sudan, losing their parents and all that they had. They walked for months with thousands of other children across barren ground to finally arrive at a refugee camp in Ethiopia. After living in refugee camps there and in Kenya through their teen years, they finally came to the United States where they have now graduated from college. This is truly an account of triumph over adversity.
Christian Historical Romance by Barbara Youree
Renaissance Brides is a collection of four novellas, combined under one cover.
Follow family lines through historical sixteenth and seventeenth-century Italy as the couples find love amidst the most trying battles. Françoise Chaplain is wounded almost too deeply to grasp the proposed love of Stefano Marinelli. Bianca Marinelli, his daughter, seeks unorthodox apprenticeship in a male-dominated culture of Italian arts, just as love comes to the studio by equally unusual circumstances. Costanza Biliverti, noble widow, faces fire, theft, revolt and her own daughter Anabella kidnapped, but finds love again in a traveling merchant. Anabella and Albret suffer their own pride and honor as good intentions and misunderstandings hinge the fate of their love on a duel.
The four Christian romance novels in Renaissance Brides are described in more detail below:
In sixteenth-century Europe, Francoise Chaplain is mourning the loss of her fiance and close family members. She, her mother, and one surviving brother find refuge on a farm in France, but they must escape war and sickness, and seek safety at a villa in Milan, Italy. There she encounters the attentions of the grand duke and the ravages of the plague – and more tragedy. Her only hope is in her relationship with God and the kindness of the man who loves her. Stefano Marinelli is at once taken with the beautiful Francoise, but he sees deep hurt in her eyes. He professes his love for her and asks her to become his wife. Could any man win Francoise’s silent heart?
Both Sides of the Easel
The cultured city of Rome during the seventeenth century embraces almost any artist of emerging talent—unless that artist is a woman. Bianca Marinelli’s ambition to become an accomplished artist blinds her to the realities of her day and sends her on a quest to be apprenticed by the famous artist Caravaggio. Marco Biliverti’s castle and lands were confiscated by his evil half-brother. Until Marco can prove he is the rightful heir to his father’s estate, he is forced to work as a stonemason. Because he also supports his widowed mother and sister, he agrees to sit as a model for Caravaggio* to supplement his worker’s income. Marco is captivated by the intelligence and charm of the lovely Bianca. But bereft of his wealth, Marco cannot hope to pursue the woman of his dreams. Can they ever overcome the barriers that separate them from a growing love?
Forever Is Not Long Enough
Costanza, a noble widow, lives on a vast seventeenth-century estate in Terni, Italy, north of Rome. While her adult son is away at the university, she and her teenage daughter, Anabella, are confronted with challenges of the estate. There is a fire in the vineyards, cattle are stolen, disputes arise among the servants, and unexpected visitors arrive. When Anabella is kidnapped by those who seek to claim to her dowry, Costanza must accept help from a handsome and wealthy merchant. When Antonio encounters Costanza, he is drawn to her family and faith. Assuming it should be easy to get what he wants, he proposes… but is rejected. Costanza would rather remain a widow than have a husband who is rarely home. She is enjoying her independent role of estate manager and will marry for no less than the deepest of love. Can Antonio persuade her that he can offer what she desires?
Proud Albret Maseo believes honor must precede love. Although he loves Anabella Biliverti with all his heart, his peasant status spurs him to earn the affection of this noble-blooded lady. Caught up in a peasant revolt, Albret knows he must release Anabella from any obligation toward him until he has proven his worth in her eyes—and his own. Anabella has loved Albret a long while, and he’s never been anything but dignified in her eyes. Her heart is confused and broken at his declaration—freeing her to love another. Vexed, she finds entertainment and comfort in the social life of Florence. When wounded honor calls for a duel, love’s strength and valor is tested.
*Here is the painting by Caravaggio in Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, MO. The fictional Marco Biliverti in Both Sides of the Easel posed as the model.