A Refuge at Highland Hall: A Novel

A Refuge at Highland Hall: A Novel

by Carrie Turansky


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The Great War shakes the world of a spirited young woman and the brave British pilot she loves, taking her from London to her family’s magnificent country estate, and sending him into the war-torn skies over France.
Penny Ramsey has always considered Highland Hall her home, but when Britain becomes involved in World War One she travels to London to assist her sister Kate with the eight orphan children she and her husband Jon have taken into their home. Doing her part for the war effort takes priority over Penny’s dreams of romance until she meets Alex Goodwin, a Royal Naval Air Service pilot in training.
Alex is determined to prove his worth and do his part to defend his country. Knowing he is heading off for the dangerous assignment of chasing Zeppelins across the front line in France, he feels it’s unwise to form any romantic attachments. But he can’t help admiring the pretty, warmhearted Penny and wondering what it would be like to find her waiting when he returns home from the war. 
As Penny writes to Alex, their friendship blossoms, and she becomes his tie to home and normalcy as he faces the hardships war. But being an RNAS pilot means confronting the enemy, and the fallout from those experiences push Alex beyond Penny’s reach. Can God mend the brokenness left by the losses of war? Will faith and forgiveness bring them together again?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781601425003
Publisher: The Crown Publishing Group
Publication date: 10/20/2015
Series: Edwardian Brides Series
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 769,404
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

CARRIE TURANSKY is an award-winning author of more than a dozen novels and novellas. She has been the winner of the ACFW Carol Award, the Crystal Globe Award, and the International Digital Award, and a finalist for the Inspirational Readers Choice Award and the ACFW Carol Awards and Genesis Contest. She has written contemporary and historical romances, women's fiction, short stories, articles, and devotionals. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, Scott, and they have five adult children and four grandchildren.

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A Refuge at Highland Hall: A Novel 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 29 reviews.
FHlady 9 months ago
This is the final book in the Edwardian Brides series; and, although I loved every one, this one was my favorite. Once again featuring the Ramsey and Foster families along with their wonderful staff at Highland Hall, the focus this time was on Penny. She travels to London to help sister Kate and her husband, Jon, with the 8 children they have taken in as orphans. When the bombing of London grows increasing worse during World War I, Sir William, her cousin, decides that the family and staff must evacuate to Highland Hall in the countryside where they will all be safer and be all to fulfill their needs more easily on the farm. This book touched my heart in so many ways. The caring and support of both the family members and their staff for the war veterans. The strong faith of each of them especially seen in their daily morning devotions for both family and staff and the way they lived their lives in service to others. Turansky's historical detail regarding the Zepplin bombings, the RNAS, the air battles etc brought the varying aspects of World War I and the hardships endured by both civilians and military personnel to life. Her character development was superb, and the plot line just pulled me in so that I couldn't stop reading until I finished. A wonderful historical fiction series that I highly recommend. ** I received a complimentary copy from the author in a Facebook giveaway. Opinions are mine alone. I was not compensated for this review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
KBRESLIN More than 1 year ago
The hardship and sacrifices of the First World War are illuminated in this poignant portrait of faith and family during 1915 Britain. Author Carrie Turansky weaves an inspiring and beautiful tale about Love's power amidst adversity, and the miracle of redemption when we allow God to guide our hearts. Carrie's keen eye for historical detail lends an atmosphere that will transport readers back to a time of lush simplicity reminiscent of Downton Abbey, and set against the backdrop of war. With an engaging cast whose courage and strength promise to rise triumphant, A Refuge at Highland Hall is a wonderful novel.
MeezCarrie More than 1 year ago
World War 1 Flying Aces and German Zeppelins zoom across the pages of A Refuge at Highland Hall, the challenges of war meticulously researched and creatively conveyed. The beginnings of new love spark for two couples in this story, tempered by the separation of war – be it by deployment or internment – but allowing the power of the written word to fan the heart’s spark into a steady and enduring flame is truly the stuff of great romance! My favorite of the Edwardian Brides series, A Refuge at Highland Hall is best appreciated if read in context (the characters!!) though it can also be read as a standalone. Speaking of characters, the Ramseys and the Fosters and those in their household (servants and friends) will carve out a spot in your heart, and though this farewell is bittersweet it is also sweetly satisfying. If you enjoyed Kate Breslin’s Not By Sight or Pepper Basham’s Penned In Time series – or if you’re still mourning the loss of Downton Abbey, you will find a refuge in Carrie Turansky’s Edwardian Brides series as well! (I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review.)
Utemom5 More than 1 year ago
'A Refuge at Highland Hall' is a delight to read, and continues on the strengths of the previous 2 books, I especially love the cover of this book - it captures everything about this story, without showing both the main characters. You could read this as a stand alone book, but I would recommend starting at the beginning and working your way through. There has been such a significant change in the character of Katherine Ramsey in particular that I think if you went back and read 'Governess' last, you wouldn't even recognize her! Everything about this book was a sheer joy, from the way that Alex & Penny develop their friendship through letters, and the in depth look at World War 1 not only in London, but how it affected the lives of everyday people. It was also interesting getting a glimpse of the work of the RAF and pilot's during this time. As always there is the inclusion of scriptural references and thoughts, to inspire the characters, though I always find it uplifts me as much in the process. One of my favourite scriptures is referenced early on in the book - in the end of Penny's first letter to Alex, Isaiah 40:31 (on page 71). It is a perfect addition to the main thread of the story, and also in our own lives, in which we often will find ourselves in great need of being lifted up by the Lord. There are many characters within the pages, in fact when I looked at the long list at the front of the book, I almost felt a little overwhelmed. Sometimes, having so many people to keep up with can take away from the story, and make it confusing. However, Carrie is able to weave them all without distraction, and they each compliment each other well. This series is one that I would fully recommend to all fans of clean Regency/Historical Fiction, with a fair amount of inspirational Christian dialogue. The stories have a depth that is rich and full and you come away feeling completely satisfied, I have enjoyed each of the 3 books, it has become one of my favourite series yet. I'm looking forward to seeing what Carrie Turansky writes next! I received this book from Penguin Random House & WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing, this is my honest review
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Such a great plot and list of well.developed chatacters. Highly recomeded!
ARS8 More than 1 year ago
If you are looking for a period drama to take you back to the past, look no further than the novel, A Refuge at Highland Hall. This is the third book in author Carrie Turansky’s Edwardian Brides series and is the first book I have had an opportunity to read by her. Going into the third book, I was not sure how not reading the other stories would affect my enjoyment. When I first cracked open the book there was a two page list of characters. However, not to be dismayed I started into the book and was soon caught up with all the doings at Highland Hall during World War 1. This story follows a couple of romances and gives readers of the trilogy a chance to catch up with the lives of the previous characters. This started out a little slow for me but by the time I got about halfway through I was very caught up in the drama of these characters and what was happening in their lives. I have read quite a few WW2 stories, but I believe this may be the first I have read that dealt with WW1. And Ms. Turansky’s attention to historical detail was quite mesmerizing. I look forward to more by this new to me author. I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. The opinions stated in this review are my own.
Fitzysmom More than 1 year ago
A Refuge at Highland Hall takes us back to the beautiful English countryside and the manor house of the Ramsey family. This time around we delve into the story of Penny Ramsey and Alex Goodwin who is a Royal Naval Air Service pilot. Much to my delight there is also a secondary romance that involves Lydia Chambers, a lady's maid, and Marius Ritter who is a German prisoner of war working on the estate. The story begins in London in 1915. That time period is fraught with danger as England is about to enter into World War I. Once the bombings of London begin Penny and her sister Kate take the eight orphan children to Highland Hall to wait out the war. While Highland Hall may be safe from the bombs there is still danger that lurks. You can't help but be drawn in to all the drama that swirls around the people involved in the story. Kate's husband Jon is a physician and must stay in London to care for the wounded. Alex is called up to fight the enemy which is beyond dangerous. Meanwhile the women must deal with situations that arise with the children and the estate. If you are looking for a book that has a Downton Abbey feel then you will enjoy this. There is drama with the family and drama with the servants all in a setting of an aristocratic family manor home. This is book three in the series and can be read as a stand alone novel. However there are numerous references to the previous two books so if you plan to read them all it would be best to read them in order to avoid spoilers. Book one is The Governess of Highland Hall and book two is The Daughter of Highland Hall. I received a copy of this book to facilitate my review.
annelr More than 1 year ago
A Refuge at Highland Hall is a third in Carrie Turansky's Edwardian Brides series. It very easily can be read as a stand alone book as the author very nicely filled in the back-story of various characters throughout the book. Set in England during the First World War, the reader finds the Ramsey family embroiled in the struggles that war brings. The heroine of this last Edwardian Brides novel is Penny who has come to live with her sister at Highland Hall to help care for the orphans that have been given a home there. Sisters and cousins, doctors and pilots, heroes and scoundrels, teenage boys with issues, German internees, and ladies' maids with secrets all bring depth to the story of family life during wartime. Despite the stress and sadness of war, romance and babies abound! Several twists and turns to the plot add a little suspense and tension, ensuring the reader will keep the pages turning. Themes of learning from mistakes, triumph over tragedy and consistent Christian faith and values throughout make this an enjoyable book.
Heart2Heart More than 1 year ago
I love it when you follow an incredible series through to the very end and you find yourself sighing with happiness but also a bit bittersweet at the same time because you realize it's over. For fans of historical romance or of Downton Abbey, you might want to begin Carrie Turansky's Edwardian Bride Series! In Refuge at Highland Hall, the third and perhaps final book in this series, we follow the life of Penny Ramsey as she finds herself an unfortunate victim of the Great War coming to England. She was staying with her sister Kate and her husband Jon, trying to help care for eight orphaned children while Kate is pregnant. It is there during a time of serving wounded soldiers, that she meets Alex Goodwin, who is recovering from a recent crash, but hopes to be back in the air again soon. She isn't about to give up her heart so willingly as the last time she did so, the man chose someone else to marry even though he hadn't given her any impression he wanted anything more. She admires Alex's calm and brave presence and when he asks her to write him when he goes to war, she hopes in the back of her mind that this might just be the one God has in mind for her. However, she also has to be practical as most men who are pilots rarely last but a few weeks. The survival rates for pilots are a bit depressing. Yet she prays for him as she receives each letter and now that the family has relocated temporarily back to her home at Highland Hall, due to safety issues now that Zepplins are releasing bombs over the cities. Alex's goal now that he has witnessed first hand what there destruction does, vows to do all he can to at least find a way to take them out. The more the letters pass between the two, romance soon blossoms and as much as Penny tries to keep her heart in tact, she finds she is slowly giving it away to Alex a piece at a time through their correspondence. Alex knows he can't face any distractions while flying, so as much as he tries to keep his relationship with Penny as merely a friendship, he can't help but wonder if he were to survive the war, what it might feel like to have someone waiting for him back in England. Will their prayers be enough to sustain them through the war or will the enemy take away the only thing they have and leave them merely victims of the war instead? I received A Refuge at Highland Hall by Carrie Turansky compliments of WaterBrook Multnomah Publishers for my honest. I did not receive any monetary compensation, aside for a free copy of this book, in exchange for my honest review. I can't even choose a favorite in this series, because it would be like asking me which child is my favorite. By the time you get to A Refuge at Highland Hall, you have had the pleasure of getting to know Kate and Julia's stories and it concludes with Penny's. However, I am still hopeful that Carrie might add another one before she closes this one out, and with that I can believe it might not be quite over. Yet you never know. There is a Reading Discussion Guide included at the conclusion of this novel and for me this one rates a 5 out of 5 stars in my opinion based on the fact I love war romances, and the Edwardian time period as well.
Virginiaw More than 1 year ago
I am beginning to love reading books about WWI and this was a great one to read. It was fun to read how Penny and Alex meet and then get to know each other. Some of the historical bits were great also. I loved learning a little about the Zeppelins and other things with planes at that part of time. There was a little suspense in the story and a lot of romance. It was nice to see the difference in living in London or in the country. It was smart for people to send the children into the country if they could. This was a wonderful edition to the Highland Hall series. I received a copy of this book from Bloggingforbooks for a fair and honest opinion.
kp68 More than 1 year ago
A Refuge at Highland Hall, by Carrie Turansky, is the final entry to her Edwardian Brides series. Join the Ramsey family once again as they are navigating difficult circumstances. This time it includes the beginning of World War I!!! The tale begins in London. Penny Ramsey has come to town to provide assistance to her sister, Kate, who not only has eight orphans to care for, but she is now pregnant as well! Kate's husband, Dr. Jon Foster, is very busy providing his services at a London hospital, so Kate needs an extra set of hands at home. Shortly after her arrival, Penny meets Alex Goodwin, a childhood friend of Jon's. Alex is currently training to become a pilot in the Royal Naval Air Service. You instantly sense something between Penny and Alex, but you wonder how anything can develop between them at a time like this! When Alex comes by the Foster's home that evening, they are all thrown into a panic as the Germans begin dropping bombs on London in the dark of night! As Jon quickly moves his family to the country to stay with family at Highland Hall, Alex moves forward with his training and is soon moved into the fighting in France. As Alex and Penny begin exchanging letters, they both are hoping it will lead to something more in the future. When Alex becomes severely injured during one of his missions, he is left in a state of hopelessness. What will he be able to do with his life and what will he have to offer anyone? Will Alex be able to look past his limitations to see what God wants to do with his life? Will Penny be able to trust God and stand firm in her love for Alex? Watch and see how this tale unfolds on the final pages! I received this book from Waterbrook Multnomah in exchange for my unbiased review http://penlessreview.blogspot.com/
Andrea_Renee_Cox More than 1 year ago
by Andrea Renee Cox As an influencer for Carrie Turansky, I received a copy of A Refuge at Highland Hall in exchange for my honest review. Thank you, Carrie! Now that I got the business stuff out of the way, let me dig in to the meat of this story. First of all, it’s the final installment in the Edwardian Brides series. This series should be read in order for optimum reader appreciation. I was glad I read it from beginning to end, because I got to know the characters and watched them grow from one book to the next. What a cool experience. A lot of books leave you wondering what could have happened to the characters you fell in love with, but Carrie Turansky took us on a journey further into the lives of her dear, fictional friends. One thing she’s mastered well (among many others, I assure you) is growing her characters across a series. In the first book, The Governess of Highland Hall, I must say Kate was quite a snob. But she really came into her own in the second book, The Daughter of Highland Hall. Now, in A Refuge at Highland Hall, it’s her sister Penny’s turn to shine. And shine she does. Penny Ramsey helps welcome her sister and the group of orphans she’s become a mother to into Highland Hall in the midst of World War I, even as she watches the man she’s come to care for fly into battle. Will the war end before her heart rips apart? Will everyone she loves who has taken part in fighting to protect her country return home once all is said and done? It was a sad moment when I finished this book. Not because the story was sad, but because I hated to say goodbye to these lovely characters and their home of Highland Hall. Seriously, if you haven’t met them, you should. So, please. Add the Edwardian Brides series by Carrie Turansky to your to-be-read-immediately pile. You’ll be glad you did. Just in case that wasn’t convincing enough, there’s more that I loved about this story. The clear and detailed description and action of Alex Goodwin flying in the war, fighting against gunfire and Zeppelins, was so intricately written that I got lost in the scene and forgot I was curled up in my recliner. Oh yeah. Carrie Turansky got me again. Many times I found myself giggling, crying, gasping, and who knows what other sounds came out of my mouth before this book was up. But did I look around to see if anyone was looking? Okay, so maybe I did once. But that was when I was reading in the check-out line at Wal-Mart. This book was too good to leave in the car. It’s really too bad I can’t read and shop at the same time. You know, while I’m searching for the items I need. Yeah, if anyone figures out how to do that, let me know. Please! So, to sum it all up, A Refuge at Highland Hall might be finishing up a series, but it also found its way to my heart… and my keeper shelf. You may find more of my reviews at writingtoinspire.blogspot.com.
MelonyTeague More than 1 year ago
It is always bittersweet to come to the end of a series, but in this case, it was sweet because this book is almost like a reunion of all the characters we have met and fallen in love with in the first two books. A Refuge at Highland Hall by Carrie Turansky is a fitting and feel good ending to the Edwardian Brides trilogy. Penny Ramsey travels to London to help her sister, Kate with the orphan children she and her husband Jon have taken in. There Ales meets Jon’s friend Alex Goodwin wh ois a Royal Naval Air Service Pilot who is recovering from a mild in jury when, to his embarrassment, he misjudged a landing. It is World War I and London is in danger, the German Zeppelins pose an enormous threat to the innocent civilians whom Alex has enlisted to protect and this becomes particularly personal when Penny, Kate and the Children, along with Alex find themselves having to take refuge in the basement on a terrifying night when London is under attack. The decision is made that Penny, Kate and the children must take refuge at Highland Hall and Alex goes off to war to protect the innocent. Through a series of events involving heroics, pain and conflict, Alex finds himself broken in body and spirit at Highland Hall, and it’s welcoming walls become his refuge and place of healing. I think this might be my favourite book of the series, just because Carrie brought this time period and the challenges of war to life. I have a greater understanding of what the veterans went through to fight for our freedom and it fills me with gratitude. As this series draws to a close if you have not already read, The Governess of Highland Hall, and The Daughter of Highland Hall, I encourage you to do so. I loved this series and it is definitely one of those you keep on your self to read again and again.
VicG More than 1 year ago
Carrie Turansky in her new book “A Refuge At Highland Hall” Book Three in the Edwardian Brides series published by Multnomah Books takes us into the life of Penny Ramsey. From the back cover: The Great War shakes the world of a spirited young woman and the brave British pilot she loves, taking her from London to her family’s magnificent country estate, and sending him into the war-torn skies over France. Penny Ramsey has always considered Highland Hall her home, but when Britain becomes involved in World War One she travels to London to assist her sister Kate with the eight orphan children she and her husband Jon have taken into their home. Doing her part for the war effort takes priority over Penny’s dreams of romance until she meets Alex Goodwin, a Royal Naval Air Service pilot in training. Alex is determined to prove his worth and do his part to defend his country. Knowing he is heading off for the dangerous assignment of chasing Zeppelins across the front line in France, he feels it’s unwise to form any romantic attachments. But he can’t help admiring the pretty, warmhearted Penny and wondering what it would be like to find her waiting when he returns home from the war. As Penny writes to Alex, their friendship blossoms, and she becomes his tie to home and normalcy as he faces the hardships war. But being an RNAS pilot means confronting the enemy, and the fallout from those experiences push Alex beyond Penny’s reach. Can God mend the brokenness left by the losses of war? Will faith and forgiveness bring them together again? World War I is raging and Penny wants to help. So she travels home to Highland Hall to help her sister, Kate, with the orphans she is caring for. Already we know a great deal about Penny and we are about to learn a whole lot more. Alex is a Zeppelin fighter which is a very dangerous assignment but he falls in love with Penny. Now with him stationed in France and she in England they have to communicate via letters. This way there is a lot of growth in Penny and Alex as Ms. Turansky deftly moves the plot along. This is an exciting adventure with history and social issues all wrapped up in the turmoil of the War. Well done! This is also a great romance. Penny and Alex are just perfect for one another and it is great fun to go through their relationship with them. Get ready for a very interesting read that will keep you flipping pages. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Multnomah Books. 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.”
Griperang72a More than 1 year ago
First I have to say that I am sad that this series is now done. From the first book to this one they were all very enjoyable reads. I have enjoyed the journey that the author has taken us on from the beginning. As always the characters are very well developed and you feel as if you really do know them. The description of the scenes was also done very well - you feel as if you right along Penny's side as she goes through her journey. It was nice that Carrie used letters in this book. Since I write a lot of pen pal letters I always enjoy reading letters that others have written. I think it makes the story a little more personal. I can't not imagine being about from somone you love during a war but I know many do it and make it through it. It shows how strong of a person that Penny was. I think this book was a fitting end to this series. If you are looking for a great series to read I suggest that you pick this one especially if you are a fan of Downton Abbey you will enjoy this.
mustlovetoread More than 1 year ago
I loved this book by Carrie Turansky. It is book 3 in the Edwardian Brides series. WWI is taking place and Penny has taken refuge at Highland Hall. Alex Goodwin is a pilot flying aircraft over Germany to keep them from bombing England. Penny had her heart broken. Can she open her heart to Alex? Will he survive the war and come back to her? I enjoyed reading their letters to one another, getting glimpses into the war from his perspective at the war front and from Penny's perspective at Highland Hall. A Refuge at Highland Hall is a great historical fiction story. You do not need to read these books in order, but once you read this one you'll want to read the others to get to know the other characters. I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The third in the Highland Hall series is just as wonderful as the first two. In this intriguing story we see Penny has grown up and has a big heart for the war effort. She crosses paths with Alex who is living his dream of becoming a pilot. A romance slowly blooms while the war rages on around them. But can it last through tragedy and terrifying times that come with being in a war? Two fantastic, strong-personality lead characters whose stubbornness might just save them. So many unique and well written secondary characters make this a full and heart-moving read. The author knows how to weave the realities of war with heart-tugging lives so well that you can’t help but be mesmerized by the story and flip the pages to see how it all ends. The fear and terror of enduring air raids, prisoners of war, and flying missions is felt here and is deeply moving. Their faith keeps them strong and gives them peace! Great dialogue, fantastic historical tidbits, lovable characters, wonderful thread of faith, and an ending to wrap up all the lives and story lines throughout the series makes this a bookshelf keeper. I received the book for an honest review.
Lane_Hill_House More than 1 year ago
Friday, October 23, 2015 A Refuge at Highland Hall by Carrie Turansky, © 2015 Edwardian Brides Series, Book 3 A lovely story of hope and love during turbulent times. Happenstance acquaintanceship builds throughout the story, as those spark a need further on. 1915, World War I Moved to the countryside at Highland Hall, near Fulton, in Berkshire, a family closes up their Kensington home following blitz bombings throughout London by the Germans, removing women and children out of harms' way. The childhood home of sisters Kate Foster and Penny Ramsey, they rejoin their cousin Sir William Ramsey and his wife Julia, now overseeing the estate of Highland Hall since the death of the sisters' parents. Julia's brother, Dr. Jonathan Foster and his wife, Kate, have brought their orphaned and abandoned children they rescued from the streets in need of care. Five girls and three boys, ages four to fifteen, the country life has brought them hope and a new experience of being able to play freely on the grounds. German prisoners are brought in to care for the fields, after the departure of the men going to British war aide. All is not as it seems, as some were children when they arrived with their families from Germany, but because of their parentage they are detained in encampment with guards. Those who had been bankers and other trades, going on with their lives, caring for their families and loved ones. War has brought upheaval to their lives as well, disrupting what they hold dear. Lieutenant Alexander Goodwin and his sister, Lindy, become reacquainted with hope for a future contact between them. Their parents had divorced, now their father deceased and their mother remarried. It took bravery for Alex to knock on the London home he had not lived in to seek out his welcome and his younger sister separated from him for so many years. Spurned away, he seeks refuge with new friends, Dr. Jon whom he has known since their boyhood in India, on his three-day weekend before returning for pilot training with the Royal Naval Air Service against enemy craft. Penny and Alex write to each other after he returns to his service. Uplifting for him, gives her a personal interest in the war, as they share encouragement back and forth. My favorite part was how Alex spoke into Andrew Ramsey's life by being honest and vulnerable with his own decisions. Young Andrew will one day inherit Highland Hall, as the eldest son. Invaluable imparting wisdom and love by example, Alex will have a huge turn about in Andrew's life choices. The Edwardian Brides Series includes book 1, The Governess of Highland Hall; book 2, The Daughter of Highland Hall; and book 3, A Refuge at Highland Hall written by author Carrie Turansky. ***Thank you to author Carrie Turansky for inviting me to be a part of the review team for this third novel, A Refuge of Highland Hall, and to WaterBrook Multnomah for sending me a pre-release copy. This review was written in my own words. No other compensation was received.***
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
A Refuge at Highland Hall is the third installment of the Edwardian Brides. What a fabulous book! I cannot tell you how much I love this series and this book from it does not disappoint. I think this is my favorite yet! I look so much more by Carrie Turansky in the future. She is such a talented writer. What a wonderful read! 5 plus stars.
BrittanyMc More than 1 year ago
A Refuge at Highland Hall is a beautiful conclusion to the Edwardian Brides series. It is filled with realistic characters and set in a time period that is fraught with turmoil. I enjoyed that the author brought all of the main characters from the previous books back together at Highland Hall, where this stately manor truly became a refuge to many in this turbulent time of war. The main story line follows Penny Ramsey and her developing relationship with Alex Goodwin, who is a pilot during WWI. I loved hearing the thoughts of these two characters as they juggled their worries and doubts. I especially liked reading the letters that were exchanged between the two when Alex was serving as a pilot. My heart hurt for both of them during parts of this story as they both tried to find the path that God had for them. Another enjoyable aspect of this story is that the other two couples from books one and two have their own situations that they must trust God to bring them through. It was heartwarming to watch William and Julia trust in God to work in their situation. Kate and Jon had to survive long stretches of being apart from each other during a stressful time for their family. And I really enjoyed the additional story between Marius and Lydia. Every struggle that occurred for each of the couples in this book helped to develop and strengthen not only their relationships with each other, but also to solidify their reliance upon God. I was sad to come to the end of the book, as I could read about this family indefinitely! However, I thought that the ending to this story was just perfect. It tied up the loose ends and gave me a glimpse into the future lives of these characters and was a very satisfying conclusion. I definitely recommend this entire series to fans of historical fiction. I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Refuge: (n)1.shelter or protection from danger, trouble, etc.: 2.a place of shelter, protection, or safety. 3. anything to which one has recourse for aid, relief, or escape. Never has a book been so aptly named as the conclusion to the Edwardian Brides series by Carrie Turansky. A Refuge at Highland Hall returns us to the Foster and Ramsey families of early 20th century England just a few months into the beginning of WWI. As the fighting comes to the heart of London through the Zeppelin attacks of 1915, Jon and Kate Ramsey and their family head out to the country and to the safety of Highland Hall. But Highland Hall proves to be much more than just a sanctuary from war torn London; Highland Hall and all its inhabitants – from Sir William and Lady Julia Ramsey to the lady’s maid – will become a source of refuge for one another during the days ahead. Lieutenant Alex Goodwin, an RNAS pilot and childhood friend of Jon and Julia Foster, will take on battles that require physical, emotional and spiritual stamina. As Penny Ramsey becomes closer to this war hero, will she be able to provide the refuge Alex seeks from his wounds of childhood and wartime? Will Lydia Chambers, a busy lady’s maid to the Ramseys, even have time to find someone to share her own heart with before the war takes all the young men away? And can displaced men of German descent survive the trials of an English internment camp with any hope of survival for them and their families? Ms. Turansky creates characters and environments that simultaneously whisk you into Edwardian England, and yet ring true with struggles and problems that we all still feel today. As each character searches for a refuge to the tumult that life brings to them, we are directed to the true refuge for all our souls – the safety and security of a true and unwavering faith in God. The final book of this trilogy will leave you uplifted as you follow the servants and gentry of Highland Hall through the adversity of WWI into the refuge of a faithful family and a faithful God.
eLynda More than 1 year ago
A Great Conclusion to the Series! I have only read one of the previous books in the Edwardian Brides series, and I really liked the continuation of the Ramsey family’s story without a detailed recap; there is enough for readers who have not read the previous two books to catch the gist of what was missed, but those who have been with the series from the start should not get bored, either. Many characters reappear and it’s like visiting with old friends, but from a different perspective as we see this next installment through new eyes. It helps to know who is who coming in as it informs their backgrounds, but this novel can be read as a standalone for someone who doesn’t want to start from the first book. The spiritual component is carefully wound throughout the narrative, appearing and reappearing in the major characters’ lives as well as the minor ones. Because they have each exhibited faith from the beginning of the story, it can clearly be seen as a sustaining factor in several instances and the struggles take on an added poignancy as I could relate to some of the doubts and challenges faced by even strong believers. Christianity never promises that all of our problems will go away, only that we will never have to face them alone, and that is beautifully illustrated in this story. Historical detail is outstanding in this book and I found myself repeatedly saying, “I didn’t know that!” From the details of daily life in London during WWI to food shortages and trying to prevent rationing, from German prisoners interred for no reason other than their heritage to the early days of wartime aviation, this book hits on many topics to provide a well-rounded storyline. It is obviously well-researched and a lot of that made it through the final edits in the novel to ground me in the time and place where the novel takes place. I found the romance to be a tad lacking—they have very little time together before being separated by war. I enjoyed that the relationship advanced through letters, keeping the characters on the same page without being in the same place physically, however, when we get to the end, there’s a stunning finish, some lovely words, and then an epilogue. As the reader, I felt I had too little time to enjoy what the novel had been building up to from the earliest chapters. Despite feeling a bit rushed at the end, overall I have thoroughly enjoyed this book and the Edwardian Brides series; I am going back to read the second book that I missed the first time around. And I will be watching for whatever Carrie Turansky writes next in the hopes of finding another set of novels in which to lose myself. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through Book Talk 411 in exchange for this honest review. All of the opinions expressed are my own.
MrsTina42MR More than 1 year ago
A Refuge at Highland Hall***** book 3 Edwardian Brides Series by Carrie Turansky The Edwardian Brides series continues with this third and last book in the series and is set during WWI. I was happy to see many returning characters from the first two books—this is Penny Ramsey's story. She has met a handsome young and daring British pilot, Alex Goodwin, who is also a childhood friend of John and Julia. Alex is on the way to the front lines in France leaving Penny concerned for his safety. Penny and Alex get to know each other by writing letters. Will Alex come safely back to her? Penny's lady's maid, Lydia Chambers, meets a handsome young man too. However, Marius Ritter is of German heritage—now considered a prisoner of war and is being held in an internment camp close to Highland Hall. Is there any chance for these two young people to spend time together and possibly find love? I like how Carrie Turansky sweeps the reader away to a different time-period to a large English country estate. The characters are so full of life and many captured my heart...well not all of them. There is one character in particular that I really did not like and had a bad feeling about what he was up to...which added some tense moments. I enjoyed the orphans antics and even the young boys trouble-making mischief—as boys will often do. The secondary characters are interesting and bring much to the story-line. We read about the characters conflicts, family drama, heartaches, secrets, prejudices, sweet romances, a kidnapping, joys, strong faith and characters who trust God through the trials they face that inspire the reader. It is sad to see the end of this series, I have enjoyed it very much. ~I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review~
brandyhei More than 1 year ago
Carrie Turansky has done it again! The third and final entry in the Edwardian Brides series brings the journey of the Ramsey and Foster families to romantic-sigh-inducing, faith-affirming, and entirely satisfying conclusion. Though each story in the series stands alone, they do build upon each other, and at the opening of A Refuge at Highland Hall, Penny Ramsey and Alex Goodwin have both received their first bruises of adulthood: Penny, a heartbreak over a lost *idea* of love, and Alex, an injury and professional black mark following a plane crash during his military training. Not to give anything away... ***spoiler alert!***...but it's very engaging how the author sets up more serious wounds later in the story from the very opening pages. ***End spoiler alert! You can resume reading now. :) In my opinion, author Carrie Turansky's style is best described as engrossing. She handles multiple points-of-view and subplots with skill and flair, and as in the other books of the series, this novel contains a secondary romance. Due to the wartime setting, it also brings quite a bit more action than the first two Highland Hall books, while still remaining true to the voice of the series. The faith elements are strong and steady throughout. The WWI backdrop provides true-to-life prompting for the characters to "pray without ceasing." The story emphasizes leaning on the Lord in times of conflict, whether that conflict arises between nations or schoolboys. Several characters are challenged to grow in faith and personal governance, learning to make wise choices, accepting circumstances, and thriving in God's choices for them. A rich and well-plotted story, with expert pacing and characters who feel deeply and inspire the reader to do the same. I enjoyed A Refuge at Highland Hall a great deal, and strongly recommend it for readers who love twentieth-century historicals, chaste romances, and Christ-honoring fiction! The other books in this series are: * The Governess of Highland Hall * The Daughter of Highland Hall I received an ARC of this novel from the author in exchange for my honest review; my opinions are my own!