Review: Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemeyer

June 16, 2014

Title: Full Steam Ahead
Author: Karen Witemeyer
Publisher: Bethany House
Pages: 352
ISBN: 978-0-7642-0967-3
Publication Date: June 3rd, 2014

When love simmers between a reclusive scientist and a wealthy debutante, will they abandon ship or is it full steam ahead?

Nicole Renard returns home to Galveston, Texas, to find her father deathly ill. Though she loves him, Nicole's father has always focused on what she's not. Not male. Not married. Not able to run Renard Shipping.

Vowing to find a suitable husband to give her father the heir he desires before it's too late, Nicole sets out with the Renard family's greatest treasure as her dowry: the highly coveted Lafitte Dagger. But her father's rivals come after the dagger, forcing a change in Nicole's plans.

After a boiler explosion aboard the Louisiana nearly took his life, Darius Thornton has been a man obsessed. He will do anything to stop even one more steamship disaster. Even if it means letting a female secretary into his secluded world.

Nicole is determined not to let her odd employer scare her off with his explosive experiments, yet when respect and mutual attraction grow between them, a new fear arises. How can she acquire an heir for her father when her heart belongs to another? And when her father's rivals discover her hiding place, will she have to choose between that love and her family's legacy?
When Karen Witemeyer has a new book coming out, you better believe I count down the days to when I can read it! She is able to to transport you into a story that has adventure and the perfect amount of humor and faith. She also presents a strong and smart female lead and a fantastic hero to partner her with.

Full Steam Ahead is another historically set story, based in the best state in the country, Texas. How can you go wrong with a state that has so much history behind it? Karen harnesses the greatness into her story and draws in with closely placed historical nuggets. And this story focuses on a piece of history I didn't know much about, the explosion on the Louisiana, a steam ship. The history of this ships has a dark and bloody past. It's easy to see how Darius, is scarred by this event he was apart of. The passion that is born for the protection of those traveling is sad. He is giving up his place in his family to try to protect other families. Sadly, his reclusiveness and his experiments that seem to blowup frequently has kept the help he has needed at bay.

Nicole is facing her own battle at her home. She is the only child to a shipping giant, who wanted a son for an heir, but with no son, Nicole's father pushed her to learn mathematics and other aspects that men would learn for business to help understand the shipping company, but he is still desperate for a male heir to the family. To make matters worse, Nicole's family is attacked by a rival's sons over a legacy, that was left to Nicole's family a few generations ago. Finally seeing a chance to prove herself, Nicole takes it and runs, literally.

Darius and Nicole each have a lot of growth in this story. Both deal with insecurities. Darius is trying to find away to relieve the grief and Nicole is trying to prove herself. They both have demons and words that haunt them. It was interesting to watch how they each pushed through these battles. How their strengths helped and hindered them. Nicole was positive she could be just as good as a man, but sometimes, it isn't the case and it is ok, it's good to have someone else there for help.

Each book I've read by Karen Witemeyer has become my new favorite by her, this one wasn't any different. The interactions between the characters is fun and the conversations are meaningful and help build the story. The setting is serene out on an abandoned plantation away from the towns. Then you throw in science and adventure, the story has it all. I honestly can't gush enough!

Too Read!
5 out of 5

About the Author:
Karen Witemeyer Two-time RITA finalist and winner of the coveted HOLT Medallion and ACFW Carol Award, CBA bestselling author Karen Witemeyer writes historical romance because she believes that the world needs more happily-ever-afters. She is an avid cross-stitcher, shower singer, and bakes a mean apple cobbler. Karen makes her home in Abilene, Texas, with her husband and three children. Learn more about Karen and her books at

Thank you to the author, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.


  1. I loved this book as well! The characters were so vibrant- I especially enjoyed Nicole's "pirate skills" :)

  2. Heidi, I completely agree. The characters popped off the page. Her knife throwing was great!

  3. I want to read this so much! Thanks for the review!

  4. I haven't been able to read this book yet, but I hope to. It sounds so interesting. I also have "Four Weddings and a Kiss" on my TBR list, as well as, "Stuck Together", "When I Fall In Love", "Seagrass Pier" and lots more!

  5. I really *must* get to this one soon! Each review I read just intrigues me more. :)


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