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Building upon the few facts that are known about the life of Lucy Walters, Elizabeth Goudge creates a monumental novel about passion, loyalty, betrayal, and forgiveness, set against the background of the English civil war. Born in Roch Castle on the wild coast of Wales, Lucy Walter is secretly married to young Prince Charles when both are in their teens. England is in upheaval, and the monarchy has fallen as Cromwell's Parliamentarians seize control. King Charles I is executed and his son flees to the Continent to rally support and gain the throne. Through all the turmoil, Lucy moves from city to city in Holland, France, and Belgium, trying to be near her husband and struggling to care for their son. Her life is populated with secret enemies, unsuspected perils, and wise and loyal friends.
From the Book jacket: FOR twenty-five years devoted readers of Elizabeth Goudge's exceptional novels have kept her name on best-seller lists with dependable regularity. In her newest novel the author of Green Dolphin Street, Gentian Hill and The White Witch returns to the setting and period of her best-loved book, A City of Bells. An English cathedral town in the mid-nineteenth century forms the background for the warm and gentle story of Isaac Peabody, an obscure clockmaker, a dreamer but a dedicated craftsman, and of Adam Ayscough, the brilliant, pious Dean of the Cathedral, whose great love for his parishioners is stifled by his own unconquerable shyness. Around these two central characters, Miss Goudge has brilliantly evoked the atmosphere of the town itself, steeped in history yet throbbing with the very real life of its citizens, who are all in one way or another affected by the Dean's remarkable awakening. Through his help and Adam the strange healing force of unselfish love is revealed with power to alter and redeem the lives of all whom it touches. In this inspiring novel, Miss Goudge has drawn, with her remarkable talent, appealing characters in a warm and richly imaginative story. As always her handling of children is magic and in this appealing story they come to life as they respond to the Dean's understanding and appreciation. Miss Goudge returns to Ely, the country she knew and loved as a child, for her novel The Dean's Watch. Having a horror of cities, she now finds the peace and beauty needed to write her charming novels in the appropriately named Rose Cottage in Oxfordshire, England. Rose Cottage stands in a small but lovely garden and beyond that, fields, woods and a great sky. The beauty of her surroundings and her own understanding of the goodness of people enable her to present the endearing and aspiring qualities of human nature. Her ability to depict the charms of out-of-the-way places and to make them live again in time and space is a constant delight to her many readers.
This book could be classified as a romance or a historical novel, but it soars beyond genre. The settings are vivid, the attention to detail is exquisite, and the characterizations are penetrating and memorable. Marguerite and Marianne, a pair of sisters, both love William Ozanne, whom they meet as children on the Isle of Guernsey. William settles in New Zealand and, after an absence of ten years, writes to the girls' father asking for Marianne's hand in marriage. He has always had a tendency to mix up the girls' names, and it is really Marguerite he loves; but it is proud, fierce Marianne who arrives at Wellington after an arduous voyage. This is a novel about survival - physical, emotional, and spiritual.
This beloved Christmas story is set in an old English seaport town, where a little girl hopes for a visit from the Wise Men. She gets and equally magical surprise instead when three ships sail into the harbor.
When orphan Maria arrives at Moonacre Manor, she feels like she's come home. Her new guardian is kind, like an old friend. However, beneath the beauty and comfort lies a tragedy. Maria is determined to find out about it, change it, and give her own life story a happy ending.
George and Nadine buy the "Herb Of Grace," a pilgrim's inn, and each of the characters in the novel are transformed for the better by his or her association with the old inn.
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