Angels Share by James Markert

Angels Share by James MarkertThe Angels’ Share by James Markert
Published by HarperCollins Christian Publishing on January 17th 2017
Genres: Fiction, General, Historical, Religious
Pages: 320
Buy on Amazon

Some believed he was the second coming of Christ. William wasn’t so sure. But when that drifter was buried next to the family distillery, everything changed. Now that Prohibition has ended, what the townspeople of Twisted Tree, Kentucky, need most is the revival of the Old Sam Bourbon distillery. But William McFee knows it’ll take a miracle to convince his father, Barley, to once more fill his family’s aging house with barrels full of bourbon. When a drifter recently buried near the distillery begins to draw crowds of pilgrims, the McFees are dubious. Yet miracles seem to come to those who once interacted with the deceased and to those now praying at his grave. As people descend on the town to visit the “Potter’s Field Christ,” William seeks to find the connection between the tragic death of his younger brother and the mysterious drifter. But as news spreads about the miracles at the potter’s field, the publicity threatens to bring the depth of Barley’s secret past to light and put the entire McFee family in jeopardy. The Angels’ Share is a story of fathers and sons, of young romance, of revenge and redemption, and of the mystery of miracles.

I received the book, The Angels’ Share by James Markert because I’m a Fiction Guild Elite Reader book review blogger.  It wouldn’t be my normal book genre if I were out shopping for a book, but nonetheless, it was worth a read.

The Angels’ Share is a historical novel that is true to the times of the Prohibition and the Depression.  William “Willie” McFee grew up in Twisted Tree, Kentucky. The McFee family is pretty well off financially even though the town itself is suffering the effects of the McFee family bourbon distillery being shut down by Prohibition.  Willie’s father, Barley doesn’t seem to have any intent on reopening the distillery even though Willie is encouraging him to do so in order to achieve his dream of becoming a distiller as his grandfather had planned.

Then a drifter named Asher Keating shows up and he seems to be able to fix people’s problems. He dies and is buried in the Potter’s Field near the McFee distillery. Gossip begins to circulate about Asher performing miracles.  Asher’s grave starts getting lots of visitors who are praying at the site, and some strange things begin to happen it the town. Willie starts to investigate the situation and he discovers facts about what his father did during the Prohibition and things about the death of his younger brother. Willie begins to write stories about what he is uncovering and gets them published in a Louisville newspaper, causing all kinds of things to happen.

The characters in the book are well developed. The story is full of mystery and unanswered questions. The townspeople are representative of people caught in a difficult situation they cannot control. There are a lot of subplots in this storyline and they will definitely keep readers engrossed in this story.

James Markert lives with his wife and two children in Louisville, Kentucky. He has a history degree from the University of Louisville and won an IPPY Award for The Requiem Rose, which was later published as A White Wind Blew, a story of redemption in a 1929 tuberculosis sanatorium, where a faith-tested doctor uses music therapy to heal the patients.

The Angels’ Share is his second novel, and he is currently working on his next historical, All Things Bright and Strange. James is also a USPTA tennis pro, and has coached dozens of kids who’ve gone on to play college tennis in top conferences like the BIG 10, the Big East, and the ACC.

Learn more on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter: @JamesMarkert. For news and updates visit his website:

I received a copy of this book without cost from the publisher through The Fiction Guild, a Thomas Nelson/Zondervan Elite Reader book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions expressed in this post are my own.


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