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The Lady of Tarpon Springs

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Much to the dismay of her Greek family, Zanna Krykos makes a living as a lawyer in Tarpon Springs, Florida. When her friend Lucy needs legal advice about the business she inherited upon her father's passing, she ends up asking Zanna to run the business instead so she can focus on her medical career. Nico Kalos is a Greek diver who has worked on sponging boats in the Aegean Much to the dismay of her Greek family, Zanna Krykos makes a living as a lawyer in Tarpon Springs, Florida. When her friend Lucy needs legal advice about the business she inherited upon her father's passing, she ends up asking Zanna to run the business instead so she can focus on her medical career. Nico Kalos is a Greek diver who has worked on sponging boats in the Aegean Sea since the age of 14, giving him a vast knowledge of the trade. When he hears of an opportunity to lead a group of spongers to the United States, he seizes it. But his excitement is quickly quelled when he arrives only to discover that a young woman with no experience in the business will be in charge of the new crews. But as Zanna and Nico face even more complications than they could have imagined, they must learn to work together or risk everything they've worked so hard for.


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Much to the dismay of her Greek family, Zanna Krykos makes a living as a lawyer in Tarpon Springs, Florida. When her friend Lucy needs legal advice about the business she inherited upon her father's passing, she ends up asking Zanna to run the business instead so she can focus on her medical career. Nico Kalos is a Greek diver who has worked on sponging boats in the Aegean Much to the dismay of her Greek family, Zanna Krykos makes a living as a lawyer in Tarpon Springs, Florida. When her friend Lucy needs legal advice about the business she inherited upon her father's passing, she ends up asking Zanna to run the business instead so she can focus on her medical career. Nico Kalos is a Greek diver who has worked on sponging boats in the Aegean Sea since the age of 14, giving him a vast knowledge of the trade. When he hears of an opportunity to lead a group of spongers to the United States, he seizes it. But his excitement is quickly quelled when he arrives only to discover that a young woman with no experience in the business will be in charge of the new crews. But as Zanna and Nico face even more complications than they could have imagined, they must learn to work together or risk everything they've worked so hard for.

30 review for The Lady of Tarpon Springs

  1. 3 out of 5

    Deanne Patterson

    Judith Miller's books are an automatic buy for me when she has a new release. Her newest voyage in writing has left quite an impression on me and will stay in my memory for a long time. Let me start out by saying I have never been to Tarpon Springs or even Florida but Tarpon Springs is now where I want to go do some fun historical research. Right from the start of the book I was immersed in the story, the smell of the ocean,the calls of the divers,the clanks of their diving suits,feeling the pul Judith Miller's books are an automatic buy for me when she has a new release. Her newest voyage in writing has left quite an impression on me and will stay in my memory for a long time. Let me start out by saying I have never been to Tarpon Springs or even Florida but Tarpon Springs is now where I want to go do some fun historical research. Right from the start of the book I was immersed in the story, the smell of the ocean,the calls of the divers,the clanks of their diving suits,feeling the pull of the rope,the fear and anticipation of that next dive for sponges,the authentic Greek food. This book was absolutely fabulous and it challenged me as well. When a book challenges me historically I love it because it means I want to find out more about what the author is writing about. In this case looked up sponging, which I have never read about before. I also was interested in reading about the trauma divers can cause themselves by rising to the surface to quickly after a deep dive. I have heard of "the bends" before but wasn't quite sure what it was. I felt as though I were there during this whole book experiencing it, perfect descriptions! My favorite character was definitely, Nico Kalos who was in charge of the diving team. Least favorite character was for sure, Adelfo Pappas,what a sneaky slimeball. He's all for himself though he tries to make you feel as though he's on your side. I was impressed with how the author made the male characters sound and think as male characters rather than as a female author would think. I love the forward thinking of the time period as well in that the town's doctor and town's lawyers are both females. Bravo! The three spinsters sisters are a bit annoying but where a hoot, loved having them in the story. I absolutely loved this book and can't wait to see what Judith puts out for us next. Highly recommended! I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House through NetGally/the author. Thank you. All opinions expressed are my own.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Cox

    FTC DISCLOSURE: I received from NetGalley an electronic copy of this book. A positive review was not required. These are my honest thoughts and opinions. A lady lawyer, Greek divers, and an expressive author voice combine to create quite an entertaining and enrapturing tale of maneuvering through life’s trials while striving toward one’s dreams with hope for a brighter future than one’s past. I love that this book featured Greeks without the mention of false gods. That is such a difficult thing to FTC DISCLOSURE: I received from NetGalley an electronic copy of this book. A positive review was not required. These are my honest thoughts and opinions. A lady lawyer, Greek divers, and an expressive author voice combine to create quite an entertaining and enrapturing tale of maneuvering through life’s trials while striving toward one’s dreams with hope for a brighter future than one’s past. I love that this book featured Greeks without the mention of false gods. That is such a difficult thing to find! Besides a few minor inconsistencies, the thing that held this book back from being a complete five-star read for me was that the lawyer and leading lady, Zanna Krykos, often “went to her office,” but there were no details of what she did there or whether she had more than only the one client (Lucy) and assisting in managing Lucy’s sponging business… until 79% of the book! This was way too late to mention other clients (whom we were never introduced to) and how she had supposedly stayed busy with them over the weeks and months that took place in the previous 79% of the story. I wanted much more detail about Zanna’s clients and work to see the intelligence she had as a lawyer and why I should root for her to keep her job rather than cave to her parents’ wishes. I felt like we got way more of Lucy’s clients and work than Zanna’s, and Lucy was merely the best-friend side character. The rich history of the Tarpon Springs sponging business and Greek divers were spot-on and intriguing. I’d never thought of that sort of business before, and I found it quite fascinating. It definitely added much depth to this story, and I’m so glad Ms. Miller shared so many details about how it all worked. That added an incredible amount of credibility, and it well showed off her research skills. Another thing I loved about this book was the cover. I had to view it online, as this was an ARC copy with no cover (Kindle copy from NetGalley), but the colors are rich, and the individual pieces come together to reveal many aspects of the story. It’s so fun when that happens. This cover definitely captured the essence of the story, and that made the read all the more enjoyable. This book will find a spot on my keeper shelf (when I have space for one, that is). I highly recommend it!

  3. 3 out of 5

    Shirley Chapel

    Judith Miller has once again pleased readers with the delightful story of The Lady of Tarpon Springs. This book had me chuckling out loud at the three Rochester sisters who often graced the pages. Then I was taken to the edge of my seat with apprehension as the Greek divers went deeply under the waters to search for and harvest needed black sponges that would make Dr Penrose's new business successful. From the dangers the divers faced every time they went down into the deep waters of the Gulf Co Judith Miller has once again pleased readers with the delightful story of The Lady of Tarpon Springs. This book had me chuckling out loud at the three Rochester sisters who often graced the pages. Then I was taken to the edge of my seat with apprehension as the Greek divers went deeply under the waters to search for and harvest needed black sponges that would make Dr Penrose's new business successful. From the dangers the divers faced every time they went down into the deep waters of the Gulf Coast to the apprehension from the secrets that were kept from Nico the head diver, I was swept in almost from the first Chapter. Judith Miller has done an awesome Job of researching the history of deep water diving for sponges in Tarpon Springs Florida during the early 1900s. I liked that both Dr Lucy Penrose and Miss Zanna Krykos were both professional women in 1905. Readers knew midway into the book who the real villain of the story was and were kept on pins and needles as the other characters faced dangers unknown to them. Readers who enjoy historical romance will love this book. Fans of Judith Miller should definitely read it. I was fortunate to win a signed copy of this book from a giveaway given by the author. I was not required to do a review but since I truly enjoyed the story I was more than happy to do so. I have given an honest review on how I felt about the book.

  4. 3 out of 5

    Kav

    Judith Miller always astounds me with the historical details in her novels. She finds the most interesting tidbits in history to create a fictional story around. Like sponge diving off the Florida coast. And the Greek divers who shared their expertise and helped establish a flourishing sponging trade. Who knew? Judith Miller, that's who! And it's worth taking a peek at the author's notes at the back of the book (after you finish the story, mind!) where she shares her research and separates fact Judith Miller always astounds me with the historical details in her novels. She finds the most interesting tidbits in history to create a fictional story around. Like sponge diving off the Florida coast. And the Greek divers who shared their expertise and helped establish a flourishing sponging trade. Who knew? Judith Miller, that's who! And it's worth taking a peek at the author's notes at the back of the book (after you finish the story, mind!) where she shares her research and separates fact from fiction. Fascinating stuff. As is our Greek hero. Nico. Be still my heart. Seriously -- it's still all aflutter just thinking about him. Opinionated. Savvy. Bold. Quick to weaken knees with the flash of a smile. Let's all shivery swoon together. One. Two. Three. Siiiiggggghhhh! But to be honest, I have to mention that Nico is...well...can an early 20th century hero be labeled chauvinistic? Very old world values when it comes to women. Which makes his first encounter with Adria delightfully combustible. A lady lawyer? A female interpreter? Business manager? What self-respecting man would take orders from a woman?! Nico can't wrap his head around that at all! And neither can his crew! But Adria is scrappy and tenacious and not about to let these stubborn men get the better of her! Especially Nico. I actually felt sorry for him more than once as he bears the brunt of Adria's strong willed independence. The dynamics between these two are so much fun to read! In the end, it's Nico's easy-going nature that's able to soothe Zanna's fire and fury...some of the time!. Plus there's a great cast of secondary characters too. Zanna's opinionated Greek family (she comes by her stubbornness honestly!) As well as the three Rochester sisters (think Baldwin sisters from the Waltons) who provide delightful comedic relief. One scene in particular in which poor Nico's noble deeds are gravely misunderstood is hysterical! I read it twice just because the comedy of errors is so much fun! And if all that isn't enough to tanatlize an avid reader's senses, there's even an element of mystery within these pages! It truly doesn't get much better than that! Book provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications Ltd.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alysha (For The Love of Christian Fiction)

    The history of this book had me enthralled! I was raised in Florida not to far from Tampa, so my family and I would go to Tarpon Springs quite a bit. I have nothing but fond memories of the town. I’ve always loved the sponging history. The suits always intrigued me, as did the clean process. It was so cool to see what they were talking about in my mind’s eye because I’ve been there. That being said the characters were a little flat for me. The romance was 2 dimensional and the “suspense” subplot The history of this book had me enthralled! I was raised in Florida not to far from Tampa, so my family and I would go to Tarpon Springs quite a bit. I have nothing but fond memories of the town. I’ve always loved the sponging history. The suits always intrigued me, as did the clean process. It was so cool to see what they were talking about in my mind’s eye because I’ve been there. That being said the characters were a little flat for me. The romance was 2 dimensional and the “suspense” subplot fell flat. There was so much build up that the ending (which was one page) was a bit of a let down. I rated this book a 3/5 stars. I wasn’t a fan of the fiction aspects, but man how I loved the history!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    Zanna Krykos has defied gender stereotypes quite enough, according to her traditional Greek father.  Her budding career as a lawyer is already a point of conflict between them.  When her friend Lucy inherits not only a fleet of highly specialized Greek boats but also the responsibility for the crew - Greek immigrants who have recently arrived for the sole purpose of working on these vessels, Zanna offers to help Lucy turn this uncertain investment into a solid business.  Lucy, who has few altern Zanna Krykos has defied gender stereotypes quite enough, according to her traditional Greek father.  Her budding career as a lawyer is already a point of conflict between them.  When her friend Lucy inherits not only a fleet of highly specialized Greek boats but also the responsibility for the crew - Greek immigrants who have recently arrived for the sole purpose of working on these vessels, Zanna offers to help Lucy turn this uncertain investment into a solid business.  Lucy, who has few alternatives, agrees, placing Zanna in charge of the boats and the crew.    Nico Kalos is the leader of a crew of Greek sponge divers who have emigrated to Tarpon Springs, Florida.  Lucy's father purchased their fleet and their passage to America, dreaming they might together discover great wealth in sponge beds deep beneath the Gulf waters.  Unfortunately, the investor died before their arrival, and the crew shares the traditional Greek opinions upheld by Zanna's father.  They are quite reluctant to work for their deceased patron's daughter and her eager friend.  Since they have no other option, Nico must walk the line between appeasing his men and teaching Zanna about the sponging business.   As a Florida resident and history lover, I enjoyed reading about the history of Greek immigration to the United States.  While I live on the opposite coast, I have visited the area near Tarpon Springs, and the town in which I now live was also initially heavily populated by Greek immigrants. I found the author's insight into period sponge diving quite fascinating, as well.  I had no idea that the sponges we often take for granted today were so highly prized and varied greatly in value.  The author gives readers a glimpse into this unique industry and the Greek immigrants who revolutionized it in America.  While I enjoyed the context of the book and its connection to local history, I was less impressed with the story.  I love historical fiction.  I enjoy contemporary novels, as well.  The rising action and the heroine of this tale, however, seemed to function more as an ungainly period remix of "My Big Fat Greek Wedding."  The dialogue between characters often felt unnatural (especially considering the historical context), and the plot dragged a bit through the middle, in large part because the secondary characters were generally unremarkable or unlikeable.  Toward the end, however, the action picked up a bit and a fairly foreseeable plot twist finally garnered some sympathy toward a particularly annoying character.   "The Lady of Tarpon Springs" didn't captivate or enchant me.  It didn't keep me up late turning pages.  It informed me and it engaged my interest enough to keep me reading, but I won't re-read it.  I probably wouldn't recommend it to a friend, unless that friend was heading to the Tampa area and looking for a historical fiction beach read with local flavor.  I may, however, recommend it to my library here in Florida, due to the local interest factor.  If I could add a half star, I would give it three and a half stars.  I liked it.  I just didn't like it a lot. I received an Advance Reader Copy of this book from Bethany House through NetGalley.  All opinions contained in this review are my own.

  7. 3 out of 5

    Nancy

    Judith Miller is an excellent academic fact finder, and this book really kept my interest. She researched the history of deep water diving for sponges in Tarpon Springs Florida during the early 1900s, and using that information, she wrote a delightful, suspenseful, insightful story about Zanna, Lucy, and Nicos, 3 people who were involved in the business of sponge diving in 1905, in Florida. This book was SO good, in fact, that I’m planning on buying as many of her books as I can to add to my perso Judith Miller is an excellent academic fact finder, and this book really kept my interest. She researched the history of deep water diving for sponges in Tarpon Springs Florida during the early 1900s, and using that information, she wrote a delightful, suspenseful, insightful story about Zanna, Lucy, and Nicos, 3 people who were involved in the business of sponge diving in 1905, in Florida. This book was SO good, in fact, that I’m planning on buying as many of her books as I can to add to my personal home library. I also am hoping to let other Christians know about her books, and that they can rest assured that the book has high moral standards and they’ll enjoy the story to the very end. Zanna Krykos is a lawyer, and back then, that was almost unheard of. Her traditional Greek family was at first against this career, but eventually accepted it. Her best friend, Lucy Penrose, is a doctor, also very rare back then! Lucy’s dad died unexpectedly, but had made her his designated beneficiary of a sponge diving business he was establishing and developing in order to bring more trade into Tarpon Springs. The story goes on to describe how the business began, and then grew and grew into a healthy commercial trade in the area. Within this superb story is the story of several people, including Zanna, Nicos Sevdalis and his experienced Greek sponge divers, the Rochester sisters, Bessie, Eugenia, and Viola, and Adelphos Pappas, who was a businessman, and greedy liar, but very good at hiding those flaws. I was fascinated by all the information about Greek divers, and the early sponge business in Tarpon Springs. You’re in for a great treat and one of the most enjoyable history lessons of your life, when you read this book. I highly recommend this book for another reason, and that is, Mrs. Miller kept the romance to a minimum, presented the romance in accordance with good values and common sense, in good taste, and will be totally acceptable to anyone with sound Christian values. I feel comfortable in giving this book a 5 star rating in the genre of Christian historical fiction. It is suitable for clean reading, and definitely an absorbing and captivating story of business and life in Florida’s Tarpon Springs in 1905. I bought this book and am convinced it was worth every dollar spent. Go get a copy, and have some fun reading! Thank you Judith, for writing a wonderful book, using the talents GOD gave you, and making reading fun for us Christians again. Keep writing this way, it’s perfect!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Prairie Sky Book Reviews

    I am always excited to read a new standalone historical novel by Judith Miller, primarily because she takes fascinating but obscure snippets of history and weaves a captivating story around them. From a girl who paints carousel horses to a father and daughter who travel the country preaching the gospel from a chapel train car, Judith’s stories always promise to teach readers little-known history while simultaneously entertaining them with a wonderful story. It’s a win-win all around! Judith Mill I am always excited to read a new standalone historical novel by Judith Miller, primarily because she takes fascinating but obscure snippets of history and weaves a captivating story around them. From a girl who paints carousel horses to a father and daughter who travel the country preaching the gospel from a chapel train car, Judith’s stories always promise to teach readers little-known history while simultaneously entertaining them with a wonderful story. It’s a win-win all around! Judith Miller’s newest story from Bethany House Publishers is “The Lady of Tarpon Springs”, which is set in 1905 Florida and centers around the sponge trade... yep, you read that correctly! This is a story of how trained divers (from Greece) arrived in Florida to harvest sponges from deep beneath the surface of the ocean. Although the characters are all fictitious, the details of the sponge business are well-researched and true to history. While the highlight of “The Lady of Tarpon Springs” for me was the unique setting from history, the story itself, complete with realistic characters and intriguing plot, was also a delight. At first the heroine, Zanna, seemed rather bull-headed and overly forceful, but watching her grow and learn to lean on her faith rather than her own strength was a primary theme of the story. Nico, the hero, was a likeable character from the beginning. His selfless care of the men under his charge was admirable, and the tender romance that developed between Zanna and him was sweet and humorous to witness. In the end, if you adore unique and well-researched Christian Historical Fiction as much as I do, you won’t want to miss Judith Miller’s newest work. Not only will it provide you with a memorable and endearing story, but you will also enrich your mind by learning about a fascinating facet of history - the sponge trade of the early 1900s! “Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.”

  9. 4 out of 5

    The Books and Biscuits Blog

    The Lady of Tarpon Springs – Judith Miller (3.5-4 Stars) In The Lady of Tarpon Springs, Zanna Krykos challenges her family's expectations when she passes the bar exam and becomes a lawyer in their town of Tarpon Springs, Florida. When her friend Lucy unexpectedly loses her father and finds herself inheriting a barely-established sponge business, Zanna volunteers her services to manage the business on her friend's behalf. Soon after, fifty Greek men arrive in Tarpon Spring, ready to begin the area The Lady of Tarpon Springs – Judith Miller (3.5-4 Stars) In The Lady of Tarpon Springs, Zanna Krykos challenges her family's expectations when she passes the bar exam and becomes a lawyer in their town of Tarpon Springs, Florida. When her friend Lucy unexpectedly loses her father and finds herself inheriting a barely-established sponge business, Zanna volunteers her services to manage the business on her friend's behalf. Soon after, fifty Greek men arrive in Tarpon Spring, ready to begin the area's first sponging expedition. As one of the few Greeks in the area, the Krykos family help these men and their manager, Nico Kalos, adjust to life in Florida. Facing unanticipated challenges to the fledgling business, Nico and Zanna work together to manage their crews and make Lucy's sponge business a great success. Ms. Miller explores the fascinating world of early twentieth-century sponge businesses, bringing her readers along to the Gulf coast. The historical details surrounding the process and those involved are definitely one of the highlights of this book! Overall, I found the premise of The Lady of Tarpon Springs to be quite unique. Ms. Miller's focus on the details of the sponging business and the work of the divers and tradesmen were particularly fascinating aspects of this book. Likewise, I enjoyed reading about Tarpon Springs, as it serves as a very different kind of setting than found in many other Christian historical fiction novels. I also found some of the characters to be quite interesting, especially Nico and his crew of Greek spongers. However, I was not a particular fan of the structure of the novel. I found the front half of the book to have a slow pace and repetitive dialogue, while the ending seemed somewhat abrupt. I would have expected a stronger overall story from such an esteemed novelist, but I'm confident that many of Ms. Miller's long-time fans will be quite happy with this book. Special thanks to Bethany House and NetGalley for the complimentary copy of The Lady of Tarpon Springs! Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. Thanks! Brittany at the Books and Biscuits Blog PS. To see the full review, please visit http://booksandbiscuits.com/blog/2018.... Thanks!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    This was delightful. It has drama and suspense and romance and humor. I liked the different relationships that the characters had with each other. It was nice to have family and friendship be just as important as a romantic relationship. I also enjoyed the historical setting, 1905. It was nice to have two females in roles that weren't typical for the time period. Also, I enjoyed reading about Tarpon Springs, Florida. It's a place I've never been but sounds lovely.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Becky

    Zanna Krykos is the daughter of a Greek boatbuilder in Tarpon Springs, Florida. Her best friend, Lucy's father made a deal with some Greek sponge divers, but he died before the contract could be completed. Zanna has offered to take over the day to day running of the sponging business. Zanna's father wants Zanna to go to Greece with her grandmother to find a husband. He thinks she should be married and giving him grandchildren, but she thinks she should be establishing her career as a lawyer. When Zanna Krykos is the daughter of a Greek boatbuilder in Tarpon Springs, Florida. Her best friend, Lucy's father made a deal with some Greek sponge divers, but he died before the contract could be completed. Zanna has offered to take over the day to day running of the sponging business. Zanna's father wants Zanna to go to Greece with her grandmother to find a husband. He thinks she should be married and giving him grandchildren, but she thinks she should be establishing her career as a lawyer. When the sponge fishermen arrive a day early, Zanna goes into overdrive to find a place for them to camp and get set up for the sponge diving. She works closely with Nico who seems to be the head diver--sometimes at logger-heads with him, and sometimes in helpful agreement. The fly in the ointment is a Mr Pappas who wants the Grecian divers to dive for a sunken ship instead of the sponges, hoping to find a great treasure. Judith Miller has brought to the pages of her novel some characters who consume the readers' imaginations and keep them enthralled from the beginning to the end. There is some predictability to the plot, but it keeps the plot moving and the characters alive in the readers' minds. This is a five-star book, two thumbs up, and the finest makeup sponge you've ever used. My appreciation goes to Bethany House Publishers who allowed me to read this book and review it.

  12. 3 out of 5

    Claudia

    I was excited to see this title because I love Tarpon Springs, Florida: the history, the close community feel, the absolutely amazing food, and the culture. Judith Miller captured it all in The Lady of Tarpon Springs. About a quarter of the way into the story I turned to the Author's Note in the back in order to get an idea of which characters were fictional and which weren't. It turns out they are all fictional, but the story gives the flavor of the time and place quite well, giving a down-siz I was excited to see this title because I love Tarpon Springs, Florida: the history, the close community feel, the absolutely amazing food, and the culture. Judith Miller captured it all in The Lady of Tarpon Springs. About a quarter of the way into the story I turned to the Author's Note in the back in order to get an idea of which characters were fictional and which weren't. It turns out they are all fictional, but the story gives the flavor of the time and place quite well, giving a down-sized version of the arrival of Greek sponge divers, an industry that continues to play an important role in the small town as it also sustains tourism in the area. Attorney Zanna Krykos and physician Lucy Penrose are taking on new roles for women in the early 1900's, not only in their chosen professions, but also in the ownership and management of a sponge company that fell into their hands with the death of Lucy's father. While Lucy owned the company,it was Greek-speaking Zanna who managed day-to-day operations along with Nico Kalos, the leader of the fifty Greek sponge divers. Lucy's father had left them ill-prepared, but Zanna proved herself up to the task. Once the daunting challenge of housing and feeding such a large group was met, other challenges continued to arise. While relying on Nico to help meet them, Zanna realized she was losing her heart to the seafaring man, something that would not set well with her own father. I have some other books by Judith Miller loaded on my Kindle. After reading The Lady of Tarpon Springs I am anxious to read those as well. I thank Net Galley and Bethany House for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was under no obligation to write a positive review and received no monetary compensation.

  13. 3 out of 5

    Robin Willson

    Independent women and Greek sponge divers Interesting story about sponge harvesting in the early 1900s. A diving crew and boats were brought over from Greece. Aman had invested in them and then died without mentioning it to his daughter - who had inherited the business but didn't want to be involved. She's a female doctor in the small town which is just off the gulf coast in Florida. Her friend is a female lawyer who happens to be Greek so she offers to handle it for her. But neither really knows Independent women and Greek sponge divers Interesting story about sponge harvesting in the early 1900s. A diving crew and boats were brought over from Greece. Aman had invested in them and then died without mentioning it to his daughter - who had inherited the business but didn't want to be involved. She's a female doctor in the small town which is just off the gulf coast in Florida. Her friend is a female lawyer who happens to be Greek so she offers to handle it for her. But neither really knows what they're getting into. However the lives of 51 Greek men depend on this to be a success and diving is dangerous. I found this a little frustrating at first with all of the bantering back and forth between the characters, but quickly became enthralled with the story and found it hard to put down. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher from the Baker Publishing Group, Bethany - Netgalley book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” #TheLadyOfTarponSprings #NetGalley

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lucy

    I was totally engrossed in this story and had to read quickly as I found the historical aspect so interesting. Ms. Miller is impeccable in her research and makes learning about sponge diving enjoyable while enjoying a story of Greek immigrants. Tarpon Springs is new to me and now I want to visit. She paints a lovely picture of the foods, clothing, boats on the ocean, the sponging industry, and falling in love. The words flow on the page without bogging down and the characters of Zanna and Lucy c I was totally engrossed in this story and had to read quickly as I found the historical aspect so interesting. Ms. Miller is impeccable in her research and makes learning about sponge diving enjoyable while enjoying a story of Greek immigrants. Tarpon Springs is new to me and now I want to visit. She paints a lovely picture of the foods, clothing, boats on the ocean, the sponging industry, and falling in love. The words flow on the page without bogging down and the characters of Zanna and Lucy come to life in 1905 as independent women taking on the roles primarily held by men. I love their strength and determination. It also contains a character who tries to undermine and cause harm for added suspense. You will laugh at the antics of the spinster sisters. All in all this is a well rounded book that I found very enjoyable and will go on my keeper shelf with the rest of this authors books. Yes, I am a fan girl. I received a complimentary copy from the author/publisher. The honest review and opinions are my own and were not required.

  15. 3 out of 5

    Nora St Laurent

    I enjoyed the spunk and determination of main character Zanna Krykos who has gone against the wishes of her father; and followed the dream of becoming a lawyer in Tarpon Springs, Florida in 1905. She’s about to follow her heart again which surprises even her. This time she feels like a fish swimming up stream as she not only has to convince her father, a very traditional Greek family man; to believe in her but her best friend Lucy, medical doctor to get on board with it as well. Not to mention I enjoyed the spunk and determination of main character Zanna Krykos who has gone against the wishes of her father; and followed the dream of becoming a lawyer in Tarpon Springs, Florida in 1905. She’s about to follow her heart again which surprises even her. This time she feels like a fish swimming up stream as she not only has to convince her father, a very traditional Greek family man; to believe in her but her best friend Lucy, medical doctor to get on board with it as well. Not to mention the women in her society who think she should abandon her dreams; get married and have children. If losing her father wasn’t hard enough, she receives a telegram with overwhelming news, 50 Greek men are heading her way expecting to work in the sponging business her father owns. Zanna has helped her friend legally now she has an idea to help her with the sponging business. Zanna hopes her father and Lucy will agree to her idea. This was an interesting time period. I liked learning about the traditions of Greek families, and the sponging business in Tarpon Springs, Florida in 1905. I enjoyed Zanna’s spirit, her family, Nico Kalos, the Greek diver who helps Zanna navigate the sponging business and how he goes about uncovering the mystery aboard one of the three ships that killed a crew member. In author notes to readers Judith describes how the story came about and how Tarpon Springs is located on the Anclote River where they have walking tours, historical museums, sponge shops and boat rides. I wish I would have known about this when I lived in Florida. This was a fun, informative, engaging historical novel with a splash of romance I recommend for a entertaining summer read and one to share with your book club. There is so much to learn. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising” Nora St. Laurent TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com

  16. 3 out of 5

    Trisha

    Zanna is a woman ready to show her family and the world that she is good at what she does. Nothing is going to stop her from being a lawyer, even when it isn't popular. Then, her good friend, Lucy, inherits a business that she wants nothing to do with it, and Zanna convinces her that she can run the business too! Zanna and the Greek diver, Nico, have to learn to work together to see the business thrive. Will their strong-wills and opinions of each other hinder the new business, or will they comp Zanna is a woman ready to show her family and the world that she is good at what she does. Nothing is going to stop her from being a lawyer, even when it isn't popular. Then, her good friend, Lucy, inherits a business that she wants nothing to do with it, and Zanna convinces her that she can run the business too! Zanna and the Greek diver, Nico, have to learn to work together to see the business thrive. Will their strong-wills and opinions of each other hinder the new business, or will they compliment each other in the end? Read more about Zanna and Nico in Judith's new book "The Lady of Tarpon Springs". You will enjoy their story, learning more about those close to them, as well as learn about Greek culture. I received a complimentary copy of this book by NetGalley. This is my honest opinion.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Brenda

    The Lady Of Tarpon Springs by Judith Miller – 5 Stars!! I loved this book! I did read it in one day. It was very interesting. In addition to having a romance thrown in there is a very real history of diving off boats for sponges. I knew nothing about this business or how it came to be. Although the story line is fiction, there was actually a group of over 500 Greeks that moved to Tarpon Springs to live and work diving for sponges. I enjoy reading about Greek families as I lived with a Greek man f The Lady Of Tarpon Springs by Judith Miller – 5 Stars!! I loved this book! I did read it in one day. It was very interesting. In addition to having a romance thrown in there is a very real history of diving off boats for sponges. I knew nothing about this business or how it came to be. Although the story line is fiction, there was actually a group of over 500 Greeks that moved to Tarpon Springs to live and work diving for sponges. I enjoy reading about Greek families as I lived with a Greek man for 13 years. Back in 1905 there was a thriving sponge business and also many came to that area to use the mineral springs that were thought to be beneficial. The Greeks that came to that area used some of the first diving gear, really quite a process to keep themselves from getting sick or dying while going down or coming up in these suits. A lot of research went into the writing of this book in regard to diving, the sponge business, and Tarpon Springs in that time period. The story line is also built around a Greek woman who studies and passes the bar to become a lawyer without her Father’s permission, which was a very big deal in those days. She ends up running the sponge business for her friend who inherited it from her Father who died suddenly. Her friend works as a doctor another career not taken up by ladies by many in those days. The Greek men didn’t want lady doctors taking care of them, nor do they want to do business with ladies and are superstitious about having a lady on any of their boats. This book was so interesting and the love story and the mystery built into the story line made up for a great read. Hat’s off to Judith Miller for another very interesting read! I received this book from the publisher as part of their book launch program, the review is entirely my own. I’m a member of "Bethany House and Chosen Books Reader Crew". #Bethany House. #BakerPublishingGroup. #ChosenBooksReaderCrew. The description as follows of the book was found on Good Reads: Much to the dismay of her Greek family, Zanna Krykos makes a living as a lawyer in Tarpon Springs, Florida. When her friend Lucy needs legal advice about the business she inherited upon her father's passing, she ends up asking Zanna to run the business instead so she can focus on her medical career. Nico Kalos is a Greek diver who has worked on sponging boats in the Aegean Sea since the age of 14, giving him a vast knowledge of the trade. When he hears of an opportunity to lead a group of spongers to the United States, he seizes it. But his excitement is quickly quelled when he arrives only to discover that a young woman with no experience in the business will be in charge of the new crews. But as Zanna and Nico face even more complications than they could have imagined, they must learn to work together or risk everything they've worked so hard for.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Narita

    I love it when I love learning something new about history. Not just facts and dates but unusual subjects I would not have dreamed of. This novel truly did that! I never thought of the sponge business and the divers or how they risked their lives. I felt as if Ms. Miller took be back in time and dropped me into the early 1900’s in the town of Tarpon Springs. Zanna Krykos and her friend Lucy Penrose are challenging the norms of the day. Zanna is a lawyer and Lucy is the town’s doctor. They are ver I love it when I love learning something new about history. Not just facts and dates but unusual subjects I would not have dreamed of. This novel truly did that! I never thought of the sponge business and the divers or how they risked their lives. I felt as if Ms. Miller took be back in time and dropped me into the early 1900’s in the town of Tarpon Springs. Zanna Krykos and her friend Lucy Penrose are challenging the norms of the day. Zanna is a lawyer and Lucy is the town’s doctor. They are very close friends. When Lucy’s father suddenly dies she finds herself inheriting a sponge diving business he had arranged and she knew nothing of! She wants zero to do with it and asks Zanna to help. There is no way out and on top of that, 50 sponge divers are coming from Greece to be housed and fed! Lucy hands it ALL over to Zanna to manage. Heading the crew is Nicos Sevdalis. He and his men are unaccustomed to women filling any management capacity or giving them directions. Nicos and Zanna are forced to work together. He knows no English and depends on Zanna (Greek also) for translating. Their beginning is pretty rocky, but they become a team. I am absolutely fascinated by the details about diving during that era. Having seen the big heavy diving suits I never thought of how difficult and dangerous it was. Not to mention the medical problems should something go wrong. My knowledge of sponges was zero. It impressed me how incredibly hard the work was for something I am sure people during that time took for granted. The Greek customs, food and family dynamics was wonderful. There were times I felt I was hiding behind chair listening. I would love to try some of the food mentioned. When I pick up books by Judith Miller I know without a doubt I will enjoy them! She checks all my boxes for a good read: Christian, historical, suspense, and a dash of romance! I received this book from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review. The opinions I have stated are my own.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    3.5 "I know you young women don't agree, but society would be better served if you dedicated yourselves to hearth and home rather than taking over jobs better suited for men." Not exactly what Zanna Krykos wanted to hear, but being a young woman and being a lawyer in the coastal town of Tarpon Springs, Florida did raise some eyebrows now and then, especially within a traditional Greek family; why, her own father was threatening to send her back to the "homeland" long enough to find a suitable Gre 3.5 "I know you young women don't agree, but society would be better served if you dedicated yourselves to hearth and home rather than taking over jobs better suited for men." Not exactly what Zanna Krykos wanted to hear, but being a young woman and being a lawyer in the coastal town of Tarpon Springs, Florida did raise some eyebrows now and then, especially within a traditional Greek family; why, her own father was threatening to send her back to the "homeland" long enough to find a suitable Greek husband. Right now, she had a more pressing problem; her friend Lucy was determined to entrust her with an unexpected business venture. Fifty Greek sponge divers, their equipment and boats were scheduled to arrive in Tarpon Springs and Zanna had reluctantly agreed to assume the position of operations manager until the business became profitable. As if Zanna's life couldn't get more interesting, the diving team's leader Nick Kalos catches her attention in spite of her insistence that he hadn't; for "he wasn't like any other Greek man she'd ever met. Granted, she hadn't been around many, but still . . . he simply defied her suppositions". But all that glitters is not gold, as invisible trouble appears on the horizon for the sponge divers; catching Nick and Zanna squarely in the middle and postponing any sweet dreams of the future. A lovely, light read with fascinating history and quiet doses of spiritual truth. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. The opinions stated are entirely my own.

  20. 3 out of 5

    Elizabeth Hernandez

    As a female lawyer in a Greek family, Zanna Krykos has never been able to make her father happy as he wants her to marry a Greek man with a stable home and have kids. In order to help her friend manage her sponging businesss she has no alternative than to agree to the choice that after the business is established she will take the next trip to Greece with her grandma to search for a husband. Her plans are unraveled as the attractive Greek sponge diver Nico enters her life. He is never used to ta As a female lawyer in a Greek family, Zanna Krykos has never been able to make her father happy as he wants her to marry a Greek man with a stable home and have kids. In order to help her friend manage her sponging businesss she has no alternative than to agree to the choice that after the business is established she will take the next trip to Greece with her grandma to search for a husband. Her plans are unraveled as the attractive Greek sponge diver Nico enters her life. He is never used to taking orders from a woman, will he fall head over heels in love with her despite that her parents do not want a diver for a husband? Ratings: 4.0 / 5.0 ⭐️ Overall I enjoyed reading this story. I loved the Greek characters, the food that the author brought in made their story authentic by brining in the imagery and taste senses of Greek cuisine. As a law student and unmarried woman, I empathized with Zanna, I’m the first in my family to go to law school and also deal with pressures in expectations in my culture of marrying and having children. Zanna was a great character as a young lawyer she has self confidence issues and I love her growth as a character and Nico’s reliance and trust in her judgment. I loved this story and learned so much about the sponging business and I wish to read further into Lucy’s story!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Shauna

    I was drawn to this book particularly by the cover. The premise of diving for sponges off the coast of Florida was pretty interesting too. Unfortunately, while the history and setting should make the story unique and fascinating, it was rather ho hum. I think if the author had added a good dose of humor it would have gone a long ways towards making it a more interesting read. I always look forward to reading a story in an unfamiliar place or time in history and I certainly learned quite a bit ab I was drawn to this book particularly by the cover. The premise of diving for sponges off the coast of Florida was pretty interesting too. Unfortunately, while the history and setting should make the story unique and fascinating, it was rather ho hum. I think if the author had added a good dose of humor it would have gone a long ways towards making it a more interesting read. I always look forward to reading a story in an unfamiliar place or time in history and I certainly learned quite a bit about the sponging business in the early 1900s. I hadn't every really thought about where they come from. I am from the west coast of Canada and love pretty much anything to do with the ocean so this book was interesting in its facts and history but the story didn't really work for me. The characters weren't terribly likeable or exciting in the least and in the end everything wrapped up rather quickly. Bam, it was over. If you're interested because of the sponging or the Florida coast, give it a go but otherwise it might not be worth it. This book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group.

  22. 3 out of 5

    Terry Houchin

    What an interesting novel! The details about the sponging operation were woven through the story beautifully. The details enhanced the story, never bogged it down, as sometimes happens in historical fiction. I quickly fell in love with the characters, always a plus in my way of thinking. I find that if I like the characters I will continue to read a book even if the plot isn't all that great. Sometimes I'm left feeling I was let down when I get to the end of those kinds of books. In others, it was What an interesting novel! The details about the sponging operation were woven through the story beautifully. The details enhanced the story, never bogged it down, as sometimes happens in historical fiction. I quickly fell in love with the characters, always a plus in my way of thinking. I find that if I like the characters I will continue to read a book even if the plot isn't all that great. Sometimes I'm left feeling I was let down when I get to the end of those kinds of books. In others, it was worth it to push through until the end and the couple gets their happily ending. This book was filled with likable characters, a rich setting and a wonderful plot, so I enjoyed every minute of it. When I saw it was available on NetGalley I was so excited. I knew I would love to review this book. That is one of the perks of writing a book review blog. I receive books to read as long as I give my honest opinion of the books. Since I get to pick and choose which books I request, I get to read books that I am more than likely going to like. If you are in the market for a historical fiction book, I highly recommend you pick up a copy. I know you won't be disappointed. Perfect for the long Labor Day weekend....just saying.

  23. 3 out of 5

    Michelle Kidwell

    The Lady of Tarpon Springsby Judith MillerBethany HouseBethany House PublishersChristianPub Date 31 Jul 2018I am reviewing a copy of The Lady of Tarpoon Springs:Zanna Krykos makes a living as a lawyer in Tarpon Springs Florida in the early twentieth century something her Greek family doesn't approve of. Her friend Lucy comes to her for legal advice after she inherits her father's business upon his passing but instead of only seeking out legal advice she asks Zanna to run her business so she can 
The Lady of Tarpon Springs
by Judith Miller
Bethany House
Bethany House Publishers
Christian
Pub Date 31 Jul 2018
I am reviewing a copy of The Lady of Tarpoon Springs:
Zanna Krykos makes a living as a lawyer in Tarpon Springs Florida in the early twentieth century something her Greek family doesn't approve of. Her friend Lucy comes to her for legal advice after she inherits her father's business upon his passing but instead of only seeking out legal advice she asks Zanna to run her business so she can focus on her Medical Career!
Nico Kalos is a diver from Greece who worked on Sponging Boats in the Aegean Sea from the age of fourteen so when he hears of the opportunity to be able to lead a group of Spongers to the United States he takes advantage of the opportunity, but when he learns that a young woman with no experience is in charge his excitement is quelled.
As Zanna and Nico face more challenges they must learn to work together or loose everything they worked so hard for. Will they be able to put their differences aside?
I give The Lady Of Tarpon Springs five out of five stars!
Happy Reading!


  24. 3 out of 5

    Kathleen Friesen

    I enjoy unusual heroines and heroes, and the combination of a lady lawyer and sponge diver in the early 1900s certainly fit the bill. The amount of research the author must have done is impressive! Learning a bit about the sponge diving industry of that time was fascinating, and the growing relationship between Zanna and Nico held my interest. The supporting cast of The Lady of Tarpon Springs added much to the atmosphere of this novel. I especially enjoyed Zanna’s Yaya, a forceful yet loving gra I enjoy unusual heroines and heroes, and the combination of a lady lawyer and sponge diver in the early 1900s certainly fit the bill. The amount of research the author must have done is impressive! Learning a bit about the sponge diving industry of that time was fascinating, and the growing relationship between Zanna and Nico held my interest. The supporting cast of The Lady of Tarpon Springs added much to the atmosphere of this novel. I especially enjoyed Zanna’s Yaya, a forceful yet loving grandmother. The antics of the three Rochester sisters added comic relief with their complicated relationships. Faith was assumed, almost as though an afterthought, and there were times I wished the actions were shown more than told. Overall, I truly enjoyed reading The Lady of Tarpon Springs and award it four stars. This book was provided courtesy of Graf Martin Communications and Baker Publishing.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Becky Lewis

    First of all, if Judith Miller’s name is on it, I buy or read with confidence, knowing that a well-satisfying book awaits. The artist’s use of pastel sunsets and sunrises in the background of Miller’s recent covers makes them very aesthetically pleasing. Two reasons to read the book before you even open the cover or swipe the first page. I love Judith Miller’s books because they are well-researched. In this case, The Lady of Tarpon Springs was a fun, mysterious education about the Greek sponge d First of all, if Judith Miller’s name is on it, I buy or read with confidence, knowing that a well-satisfying book awaits. The artist’s use of pastel sunsets and sunrises in the background of Miller’s recent covers makes them very aesthetically pleasing. Two reasons to read the book before you even open the cover or swipe the first page. I love Judith Miller’s books because they are well-researched. In this case, The Lady of Tarpon Springs was a fun, mysterious education about the Greek sponge divers off Florida’s coast in the early 1900’s. This was a part of history I’d never heard of. Then there is the sparking, light sizzle of a clean romance. How fun to view it through the eyes of a Greek family’s expectations. I enjoyed the inclusion of the somewhat irritating, interfering Rochester sisters. They really add a surprising depth to an already good story. Miller’s writing style is inviting, making what could be profoundly unknown seem familiar, while also keeping my interest. Never once did I feel a-sea nor wonder when the book would end. Fun Quotables: “‘What’s that you’re saying about fifty men?’ Her mother dipped a piece of crusty bread into olive oil. ‘I think one will be enough, Zanna.’” “ ...his bushy black eyebrows wriggled like frightened caterpillars attempting an escape.” I highly recommend this book. I gratefully received a complimentary copy from the publisher and NetGalley. This in no way affected my opinions, for which I am solely responsible. I was not required to leave a positive review.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Robin

    I picked this because it was set in Tarpon Springs, which is very near me. I've always been interested in the history of the town and in sponge diving. The author did quite a bit of research and wove that into a fictional account of the first Greek sponge divers coming to Tarpon Springs. She includes two strong women as well as a fake and a real romance. The young female town doctor inherits a sponge diving business instead of cash and hires her friend, a young female attorney, to manage the bus I picked this because it was set in Tarpon Springs, which is very near me. I've always been interested in the history of the town and in sponge diving. The author did quite a bit of research and wove that into a fictional account of the first Greek sponge divers coming to Tarpon Springs. She includes two strong women as well as a fake and a real romance. The young female town doctor inherits a sponge diving business instead of cash and hires her friend, a young female attorney, to manage the business. There are some credible problems that arise. This is a "ladies' book," and a quick read.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Patti Whitson Stephenson

    This is such a unique story. Judith Miller’s research about the sponging industry in Tarpon Springs and the Greek culture combined to make an intriguing storyline. I loved the characters of Nico and Zanna. They made a great couple with their humor and romance. There’s a little bit of suspense that kept me turning pages to see what happened next. Overall, it’s a fun, interesting read. I received a copy of this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

  28. 3 out of 5

    Emily Yager

    This is a well researched book. The details of how the Greek immigrants worked by diving for sea sponges was well done. It is an interesting 'job' that I knew very little about, and this book brought this occupation and the struggles that many Greeks had to deal with. Did I love this book? Not really, though I did enjoy this sweet romance and was glad that I read it.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sherri Ferguson

    I enjoyed this book from the first page to the last. The characters were fun and the storyline was interesting, but what I liked the most was the backdrop. I found learning about diving for sponges in the early 1900’s very fascinating. I even found myself holding my breath while they “screwed” his bubble helmet on. Lol! If you’re a fan of Judith Miller, this book won’t disappoint.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Evangeline

    I won this book in a giveaway and was asked to give an honest review of it. I always enjoy books by Judith Miller and was certainly not disappointed in this one. I was not familiar with sponging and found it interesting. I loved the characters and found this to be a delightful read.

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