My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Genre: Regency Romance
Book Description: Cornwall was in her blood, and Delia feared she’d never escape its hold.
Cornwall, England, 1811
Blamed for her husband’s death, Cordelia Greythorne fled Cornwall and accepted a governess position to begin a new life. Years later her employer’s unexpected death and his last request to watch over his five children force her to reevaluate. She can’t abandon the children now that they’ve lost both parents, but their new guardian lives at the timeworn Penwythe Hall . . . back on the Cornish coast she tries desperately to forget.
Jac Trethewey is determined to revive Penwythe Hall’s once-flourishing apple orchards, and he’ll stop at nothing to see his struggling estate profitable again. He hasn’t heard from his brother in years, so when his nieces, nephews, and their governess arrive unannounced at Penwythe Hall, he battles both grief of this brother’s death and bewilderment over this sudden responsibility. Jac’s priorities shift as the children take up residence in the ancient halls, but their secretive governess—and the mystery shrouding her past—proves to be a disruption to his carefully laid plans.
Rich with family secrets, lingering danger, and the captivating allure of new love, this first book in the Cornwall Novels series introduces us to the Twethewey family and their search for peace, justice, and love on the Cornish coast.
My thoughts: This is a beautiful story of a young woman who has lived through difficult circumstances. It reminds me that life is what you make of it, even when it doesn't go as planned.
Cordelia is a governess to some adorable children who have suffered through the loss of both of their parents. She is the rock that holds the children together and she excels in her role. She has experienced heartache of her own but continues to focus and serve the children rather than get lost in her own grief.
This book had me involved with the plot and characters right from the beginning. I loved the outpouring of acceptance and responsibility the adults showed to the children. They were the heroes with the love they gave the children when they needed it the most. Of course, this story is not all about the children. It is also a slow-moving love story. The timing of events and the progression of the story were perfect. It moved at a perfect pace for me.
Sarah E. Ladd captured the majesty of the sea and I could see myself on the shore with the children discovering the beauty and wonder of seeing it for the first time. She described the joys and frustration of farming and starting a new orchard.
From the beginning, I knew that there was a problem between Cordelia and her in-laws. They did not part on good terms. There was a mystery surrounding her husband's death. I really liked how the story was revealed a little at a time and came to a climax that was very interesting. I was invested from the beginning to the end.
This story contains Christian themes and non-graphic violence.
Online Purchase Links:
A Reluctant Bride by Jody Hedlund
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Genre: Historical Fiction
Book Description: After facing desperate heartache and loss, Mercy agrees to escape a bleak future in London and join a bride ship. Wealthy and titled, Joseph leaves home and takes to the sea as the ships surgeon to escape the pain of losing his family. He has no intention of settling down, but when Mercy becomes his assistant, they must fight against a forbidden love.
My thoughts: Wow! Just wow! This book is beautifully written and captured me from the beginning. It is a lovely love story about learning to trust and recognize love, overcoming social expectations, and the plight of the poor. This is a story that I don't think I will be able to emotionally let go of for a while.
As I read about the living conditions in London during the middle nineteenth century and the conditions on the boat for the poor, I started to think of my own ancestors who made the journey during that time period. I am sure that they traveled in steerage and lived in the less desirable areas. I am filled with greater gratitude for them and the sacrifices they made for themselves and ultimately for me. This book is filled with history and doesn't sugar coat life for the people during that time period.
Jody Hedlund chose fictitious characters and put them in situations that really happened. I couldn't help but love the characters, the setting, and the time period. This book entertained me while opening my eyes to history.
If you love romance and history, this is a book that I would highly recommend. It does contain kissing and Christian themes.
Online Purchase Links: