The Weaver's Daughter: A Regency Romance Novel

The Weaver's Daughter: A Regency Romance Novel

by Sarah E. Ladd

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Henry Stockton has been warned about the Dearborne family. Kate Dearborne, too, has been advised to stay far away from the Stocktons, but chance meetings bring them together, blurring the lines between loyalty and love in Regency England.

“A story of betrayal, love, and redemption, all beautifully rendered in rural England.” —Elizabeth Camden

Loyalty has been at the heart of the Dearborne family for as long as Kate can remember, but a war is brewing in their small village, one that has the power to rip families asunder–including her own. As misguided actions are brought to light, she learns how deep her father’s pride and bitterness run, and she begins to wonder if her loyalty is well-placed.

Henry Stockton, heir to the Stockton fortune, returns home from three years at war seeking refuge from his haunting memories. Determined to bury the past, he embraces his grandfather’s plans to modernize the family’s wool mill, ignoring the grumblings from local weavers. When tragedy strikes shortly after his arrival, Henry must sort truth from suspicion if he is to protect his family’s livelihood and legacy.

As unlikely adversaries, Henry and Kate must come together to find a way to create peace for their families, their village, and their souls—even if it means risking their hearts in the process.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780718011895
Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
Publication date: 04/10/2018
Sold by: HarperCollins Publishing
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 3,190
File size: 947 KB

About the Author

Sarah E. Ladd received the 2011 Genesis Award in historical romance for The Heiress of Winterwood. She is a graduate of Ball State University and has more than ten years of marketing experience. Sarah lives in Indiana with her amazing family and spunky golden retriever. Visit her online at; Facebook: SarahLaddAuthor; Twitter: @SarahLaddAuthor.

Read an Excerpt


January 1812 Amberdale, West Riding Yorkshire, England

Henry Stockton pulled his mare to a stop at the crest of the stone bridge and tipped his wide-brimmed hat low over his forehead to guard against winter's icy blasts.

The small village of Amberdale spread out before him, slumbering in frozen stillness. Biting gusts swept down from the moorland and peppered the landscape with wet snowflakes, simultaneously obscuring the view and emphasizing its beauty.

While fighting on the Iberian Peninsula, he'd had days — months — when he wondered if he would ever again see Amberdale's rows of stone cottages or hear the resonant call of its hallowed church bells. But he was here now. And it was no dream.

Had it really been three years since he'd last set foot on Amberdale soil? Three years, two months, and one week, to be exact. And now, at least for him, the days of war and uncertainty were in the past. Surely the horrific memories would dissipate now that he'd returned to England's shores. His future stretched before him, fresh and unblemished as new-fallen snow, and he could forget the nightmare and focus on his family's wool mill.

He tapped his heels to the horse's sides and they ambled down the bridge. Perhaps he should have sent word of his impending arrival, but there had not been time. Impatience to return to his grandfather and sister had pushed him forward, and pausing to pen a missive would only result in delay.

He was about to turn off the bridge when a strange cry followed by a thud caught his attention. Before him, just to the left of the road, a woman clad in a cloak of deep red was climbing down from a donkey cart. A large bundle had fallen from the rickety vehicle onto the snowy ground behind her.

She bent and struggled to lift the wide parcel, only to have it fall forward again. The wind caught her hood and blew it backward as she leaned down a second time, sending chestnut curls whipping around her face. When the bundle slipped a third time, she gave her foot a little stomp and propped her hands on her hips.

A smile tweaked Henry's lip at the sight. Once at the road's edge, he dismounted, secured his horse to a tree trunk, and crossed to within a few feet of her. "May I be of assistance?"

She jumped and whirled around, her brilliant light-brown — no, hazel — eyes wide with surprise.

Henry drew a sharp breath as their gazes locked. Something was strangely familiar about the set of her full lips and her suspicious expression. The sight struck him like a long-forgotten memory struggling for recognition.

He extended his gloved hand to demonstrate that he was no threat. "I saw you were struggling, and ..."

Silence hung heavy between them. Was she going to respond?

Her dark eyebrow arched and her chin lifted. "Thank you, sir, but I am quite capable."

He leaned closer. "I don't doubt your capability, but the weather is relentless, and I couldn't return home and be at peace if I thought you were still in this disdainful weather, wrestling this pack. So, if you'd allow me to help you, I'd consider it a great favor of easing my conscience."

Finally a grin curved her lips, leaving a small dimple at the corner of her mouth. Her gloved finger hooked a curl and tucked it behind her ear before she motioned to the canvas-wrapped package. "Very well then."

He crouched and wrapped his arms around the thick bundle, then stood. The wooden cart groaned and shifted when he dropped it onto the bed. "That should do it. If you hand me that rope there, I'll secure it."

This time she did not protest. She retrieved a length of rope and extended it toward him.

He threaded the cord through the rusted guides, tightened the slack, and knotted it in place. "There. That won't go anywhere." He pulled his hands back, and as he did, white and gray fibers clung to his dark gloves. He plucked them off, and the damp wind caught the airy strands and carried them away. He frowned. "Is this wool?"

She nodded. "It is."

He tilted his head and looked at her again, more closely this time. He had met many of the local weavers in the years before he left for war, and the longer he beheld her narrow face and slender nose, the more familiar they became. "Are you by chance taking it to Stockton Mill?"

She gave a little laugh, as if entertained by the idea, and shook her head. "No, no. I'm retrieving the wool on my father's behalf. He is a clothier."

"Oh. I've only recently returned to Amberdale, and I feel as if we've met at some point, but I can't place when."

After a sharp intake of breath, her words flew strong and sure, almost like an accusation. Her eyes narrowed. "I know who you are."

"You do?"

"You are Henry Stockton."

He was almost amused by the authority in her voice. "Guilty as charged. But you see, now I'm at a disadvantage. I don't know your name."

Instead of offering a smile of welcome, she glanced away, her nostrils flared. She wiped her hands on her cloak and turned. "I thank you for your assistance, sir."

Puzzled by her sudden change in demeanor, he trailed her as she rounded the cart. "But you didn't tell me your name."

She climbed into the seat, gathered the reins, and released the brake, ignoring him.

He thought she was going to drive down the path and vanish, like a vaporous dream, but then she paused and pivoted. The sharpness of her gaze pinned him to his spot. "I am Miss Dearborne. Perhaps you recall my papa, Silas Dearborne."


Henry stiffened, and the imaginary thread of curiosity ensnaring him snapped.

He knew the name all too well.

She slapped the reins attached to the donkey, which started forward. The cart lurched and creaked as it crossed the bridge and disappeared down the lane edging the faded forest.

Henry released his clenched fist and once again secured his hat against the wind. The Stocktons and the Dearbornes had been enemies for as long as he could remember. He could only assume by her cold countenance that they still were.

Henry drew a deep breath, walked over to his horse, and mounted it, hoping his first interaction in Amberdale was not a harbinger of things to come.

* * *

Could her eyes be trusted?

Henry Stockton was alive.

Kate forced her gaze to remain on the narrow, frost-laden road ahead. Oh, this was news indeed.

Everyone — weavers and millworkers alike — had been surprised when Henry Stockton joined the army, and when news of his death arrived a couple of years later, a tremor shook the village.

That was several months past.

Clearly there had been some mistake.

At first she had not recognized him. Why would she? He'd not crossed her mind since she'd learned of his death, and she hadn't laid eyes on him in over three years. Even prior to that, they'd rarely spoken. Of course she'd seen him at church or the occasional village festival, but beyond that, Papa had shielded her from the Stockton clan at all costs.

Everything within Kate yearned to cast one more glance at the tall man who unknowingly exerted such a powerful hold over her family. She resisted and clutched her cape as the wind whipped through the woodland lining the road.

His presence was not to be taken lightly. As the heir to Stockton Mill, Henry Stockton had the power to affect commerce in the area.

If he was as ruthless and determined as his grandfather, it could be disastrous for them all.

She tugged the reins to the right to avoid a snowdrift. The drive to Meadowvale Cottage was not a long one. Normally she would have taken the main road through the village, but that path would have taken her past Stockton Mill and then Stockton House, and assuming Mr. Stockton would travel that route, Kate had changed her direction. She wanted to put as much distance between herself and the newcomer as possible until she knew more.

But as she approached Meadowvale, she frowned. Night had not yet fully fallen, and Papa was not expected back from the Leeds cloth hall for hours. Despite this fact, several saddled horses were clustered next to the stable, including her papa's dappled mare. Three wagons stood unattended, and heaps of covered cloth rested in the beds.

Kate urged the tired donkey to move faster.

No sounds came from the nearby weaving house, and none of the journeymen were visible through the dye house windows. Joseph, their young, freckle-faced stable hand, appeared in the courtyard, pitchfork in hand.

"Why are all these horses here?" she called.

"Weavers' meeting."

She glanced heavenward. Pewter clouds churned in a colorless sky, and snowflakes drifted on icy gusts. The men never returned from the cloth house this time of day, let alone in weather such as this. Normally they would find a room at the public house and wait until dawn's light. "I assumed they'd still be in Leeds."

"No, miss." He shrugged with a sniff. "Been here almost an hour."

After instructing the youth to unload the wool and tend to the donkey, Kate turned her attention to the snow-covered thatched cottage. Yellow light spilled out the windowpanes, and through the wavy glass she spied masculine silhouettes.

Something significant had happened to assemble such a large crowd. Had they learned of Mr. Stockton's return, as she just had?

Kate tightened her cloak around her and rounded the cottage to the kitchen entrance, keeping clear of the windows to avoid notice.

The door squeaked on its ancient hinges as she entered. Betsy, their maid, and Delilah, the wife of one of her papa's journeymen, huddled next to the door frame, listening.

Kate shrugged her crimson cloak from her shoulders, shook off the snow, and hung it on a nearby peg. "What's happening?"

Betsy held a slender finger to her lips for silence, fixed dark eyes on Kate, and leaned close. "Burnes and Dolten sent word with a messenger that they'd no longer conduct business in the cloth halls and that all cloth would be purchased directly from the mills."

"What?" Dread sank like a stone in the pit of Kate's stomach. This rumor had been swirling for weeks, and now it seemed to have come to pass. Competing with the mills' volume and pricing was already difficult, and the cloth halls had been their only opportunity to display the quality of their product. No wonder the tones projecting from the drawing room were so terse. "Did they say which mill owners they would be working with?"

"Not specifically, but I think we can all guess who they are referring to."

Kate bit her lower lip.

William Stockton.

Not only did he own Stockton Mill, but he was part owner of at least half a dozen more.

Kate tugged the string behind her back and released her work apron from her waist. She tossed the garment on a nearby chair and smoothed a few clinging woolen fibers from the faded blue linen of her gown. She would not stand here in the kitchen eavesdropping. She was a weaver, just like the men in the drawing room, was she not?

She eased the door open and slid into the crowded space. The scents of cold and the outdoors clung to the crowd and mingled with the wood smoke puffing from the hearth. Silas Dearborne stood atop an overturned crate at the chamber's front. Despite winter's ever-present chill, he'd discarded his coat. His striped cotton waistcoat hugged his thick, barrel chest, and his sleeves were rolled to his elbows, displaying his sinewy forearms.

Papa's full, whiskered cheeks were flushed, moisture dotted his wide brow. "We must come to terms with Burnes and Dolten's defection. Whitby just received confirmation from a reliable source that they signed an agreement to purchase broadcloth directly from Stockton, Pennington, and Appleton Mills."

Kate slid against the back wall near the stone mantelpiece and scanned the men's faces. Most she knew. A few she did not. But what she did know was that these men made their living by wool — and they all detested the Stockton name.

Her father's gritty voice intensified. "I speak for all of us when I say this has gone on long enough. William Stockton must be stopped. I'll not stand by and see the life we've all toiled for dissolve into meaningless bedlam."

All around her, weavers, shearmen, and carders nodded in agreement. Her papa raised his hands, silencing the whispers racing around the room. "If Burnes and Dolten have made this deal public, we'd all be fools to think other buyers will not follow suit. The cloth hall has been a sacred place for generations. But now buyers are dwindling. They've been seduced by the mill owners and their promise of cheap prices for poorly crafted material. Men, they are stealing food from your tables and work from your hands. Are you going to allow them to plunder your livelihood? Your heritage?"

"But what can be done?" shouted a raspy voice from the far side of the room.

"Plenty." Papa pointed a thick finger at Thomas Crater. "And something must be done. We are stronger, louder, and more effective if we band together."

A deeper voice echoed from the corner near the door. "Word is Stockton's going to install gig mills at his factories. This true?" A fresh rush of chatter rippled through the room.

"I heard the same." Mr. Wooden, a short, stocky man, stepped forward, his floppy hat in his hands, his shabby gray coat hanging askew on his shoulders. "I heard tell that one man and one lad can do in a single day what it takes twenty-eight shearmen to do. Twenty-eight! Recall the agreement we struck with Stockton two years ago? He said he'd not deny the local shearmen work as long as we didn't demand a wage increase. We've honored the bargain, yet he goes against his word time and time again. He values money over his neighbor, refusing to aid the men whose blood and sweat built the very village over which he lords."

The growing fervor incited alarm within Kate's chest. She'd witnessed several heated weavers' meetings, but the men's frenzied state was unlike any she'd seen. She swallowed hard. As of yet they didn't seem to be aware of Henry Stockton's return, otherwise that topic would certainly dominate the conversation.

As usual, her father's authoritative tone commanded attention amid chaos. "Gentlemen. We must remember, the law is no longer on our side. Mr. Stockton is well within his rights to employ any machine he chooses to make his cloth."

The grumbling softened, but Mr. Wooden persisted. "It's morally wrong, and every man drawing breath here knows it. The men he employs to run the looms are barely qualified to card wool, and then he pays honest, trained weavers who have dedicated their waking hours to the betterment of the field next to naught. It's disgusting how he forces young people from their homes, when they should be learning alongside their parents, and puts them to work in such degradation. He encourages men to fraternize with unmarried women. It's not decent. Pity the man who must sell his soul! I'd sooner die than see my son or daughter work in such a den of iniquity."

The muttering rose, but then her papa raised his hand yet again and the room fell silent. "I don't agree with it, gentlemen. I don't know many upstanding men who would. Let the Stocktons and Penningtons of the county bring in their gig mills. Let them see what will happen when they turn their backs on their communities. Ah yes. Let them come. We'll be waiting for them. Are the shearmen not our brothers?" Papa balled his fist and thrust it into the air. "As long as there is breath in my lungs and strength in my arms, I'll fight for what's mine and the future of all we hold dear.

"You have my pledge," Papa continued, his face shaking, "I will not rest until every weaver, shearman, and carder alike is given due respect. The mill owners and merchants may be winning this battle, but the war is still undecided."

Without warning the main cottage door flung wide and its heavy, wooden bulk slammed against the plaster wall. Jimmy Taylor, a weaver's son, filled the door frame. Black eyes wide, he swiped his slouched felt hat from his dark head and gasped for the air to support his words. "He's back! Henry Stockton's back from the grave!"

Papa pushed his way through the crowd until he towered over the youth. "Henry Stockton is dead. Killed in the war."

"No, he's not. He's not! I saw 'im with me own eyes. He rode right up to Stockton House, pushed open the gate, and headed inside. He walked with a limp, but he was as real as any man standing here." Pandemonium exploded. Voices, anger, and frustration echoed from the ceiling's low beams.

Papa jumped back on the crate. "Men, calm yourselves. Time will reveal all, but for now, let's not forget what needs to be done."

Kate's breath seized when her papa caught sight of her.

His thick eyebrows rose and he pointed at her. "Katie girl, go now, fetch the ale. Let this be the night we remember as one when we toasted to unity. To craftsmanship. To tradition. To the future."


Excerpted from "The Weaver's Daughter"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Sarah Ladd.
Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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The Weaver's Daughter: A Regency Romance Novel 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 57 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Highly recommend. Well developed plot and characters,very interesting and enjoyable to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has alot to offer. I wish the book had been a seriers as other characters could of had there own story. Good, clean. Just a good overall. I gave 4 stars because, I think the story could of gone a little more.
MissKnu 3 months ago
Fresh and unexpected, The Weaver’s Daughter is a wonderful Regency that deals with issues of class, commerce, and social mores. This stand-alone novel combines the fraught beginnings of the industrial revolution with a star-crossed lovers romance. Sarah E. Ladd’s writing shines in the portrait of a time and place as well as the crafting of believable characters. Highly recommended for readers who enjoy chaste romances with themes of loyalty, love, compassion, and faith set in early 1800’s rural England. This review refers to a finished copy I voluntarily received from the publisher through Thomas Nelson and Zondervan’s Fiction Guild. All opinions expressed are my own.
CindyFW More than 1 year ago
Between 4 and 4 1/2. This was an interesting book about the differences and politics between the weavers and the millers. It was hard to not form an opinion and take sides after reading how each group was affected. Henry and Kate were compelling characters as they struggled with their loyalties. Belonging to rival families didn't help their relationship, but what impressed me most was their kindness and eagerness to do what was right, even at the expense of personal sacrifice. There's also a dichotomy of good vs evil, humility vs pride, cruelty vs forgiveness carried out in the choices made by the secondary characters. In the end, it was a story that made me think as it left me with a sense of hope shown in the last chapter.
DKStevens119 More than 1 year ago
 Feuding families and they are next door neighbors too! These young family members are seeing the way the future is changing over to machines and the way of the past is not easy to let go by the older members. I enjoyed the story as we read about the struggles of weavers fighting the switching over to machines and losing their income and family legacies. Murder, suspense and a touch of romance made for a wonderful story. I requested a copy through NetGalley, My review is voluntary.
mrskbookstogo More than 1 year ago
Kate has a boldness, a conviction that runs deep. Her family's beliefs have been a powerful compass for her loyalty and commitment to those she loves... those she strives to serve... and those whose future is being threatened. When Henry Stockton returns from the grave, she discovers that "past" assumptions causes actions that leads to a starvation of the soul. "If war had taught him one thing, it was that the things he thought mattered no longer did so." Henry has just returned from the war. He was prepared for the initial shock that his living might cause his family, what will create havoc will be the truth behind his family's business. Henry has much to do if he is going to bridge generational choices with new perspectives. With Kate's help... maybe his desire for change might become a path for everyone in the village. What can hope, grit, and faith produce in the midst of falsehoods, deceit, and assumptions? Is it possible to lead others into an "united" perspective of success? Is life, family, and future worth the changes within your heart? Is it really possible to "see" someone beyond what has always been assumed? Hope, trust, and faith can lead to a change for tomorrow, MrsK
RobbyeReviewer More than 1 year ago
A betrayal by Kate Dearborn’s best friend, Frederica Pennington, left Kate confused and angry. Twelve years later Henry Stockton seemingly appears from the dead. How can these two seemingly unrelated events be a harbinger of things to come in Yorkshire, England? Sarah E. Ladd’s book, A Weaver’s Daughter, covers many social issues germane to the English Industrial Revolution, though many are still around nowadays. For instance, we have child labor and sweatshops in parts of the world today. She vividly portrays the history of the era, specifically how the industrial revolution affected those who were hand weavers at the advent of new machines which could weave much faster. I was drawn deeply into the story and could see advantages and disadvantages to both types of weaving. I felt the frustrations of the hand weavers and the excitement of the mill owners. I also felt Kate’s frustrations, pain and anger at her father’s betrayal of her and her brother. A Weaver’s Daughter is a well written, profound book. Although it is written during the Regency era, Ladd focuses on the grittier side of the time period as opposed to the glittery opulence of the Regency balls, clothing and homes. She realistically portrays the pull of old to new, past to future and customary to visionary. This is not your typical Regency romance, as it doesn’t follow traditional styles for the time period. It is a wholesome, uplifting story that I highly recommend. I received this book from The Fiction Guild. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.
BookwormMama2014 More than 1 year ago
This story, in my opinion, is very reminiscent of North and South. Granted I have only seen the movie once. But all the weavers and mills and rivalry...*Sigh*...I do love this time period. 1801, England. Can I have a time machine, please? Just to know, for a few days. This story also has threads of Romeo & Juliet as well...At least in terms of the rivalry...Don't worry...there is a happy ending to this story. This story is such a moving example of LOVE conquering all. Overcoming offense. Breaking down the barriers of differences. A well-written story with wonderful characters. Definitely one of my favorite books by Sarah E. Ladd. I look forward to more stories like this one. I received a complimentary copy of The Weaver's Daughter from the publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
sh2rose More than 1 year ago
The well defined characters in The Weaver’s Daughter face family loyalty while risking integrity. Kate Dearbourne lives in a community that survives on their weaving trade steep in tradition. Henry Stockton returns home from the Three Years War, seeking solace and restoration. Instead, he finds a battle about to explode between his wealthy, visionary family and the local weavers. Kate’s eyes begin to open to her father’s stubborn ways as she continues to run into Henry. Both Kate and Henry must find their place with God, themselves, and the ongoing weaver’s barrage against progress. Henry struggles inwardly looking for his own path. Kate challenges everything she’s always known, even the suitor her father desires for her. The Weaver’s Daughter moves quickly, delves into history, and shows the reader the real heart of her characters. I enjoyed this novel set in the Industrial Revolution. I received a copy from Net Galley and Thomas Nelson Fiction. I was not compensated for this review. All thoughts are my own.
GailHollingsworth More than 1 year ago
This novel is set within the time period of the Indusrial Revolution in Yorkshire, England. Henry Stockton is coming home to the village of Amberdale after serving as a soldier for three years. The sights, sounds, and actions of war has caused him to have nightmares and flashbacks, but he must fight it and begin working with his grandfather in his textile mill. It's a very volatile time with new machinery being invented that will improve efficiency but also cause many to lose their jobs. Kate Dearborne works as a weaver with her father, but he is not willing to progress and is clinging to the old ways. Millers vs Weavers is beginning to start a war in their village with threats of damage to the mills. Henry just thought he was back from the war! I enjoyed getting to know each character and their personalities, some good, some questionable. The story moved right along with action and danger within the pages. New friendships were formed while old ones died away. Loyalty is questioned as pride and bitterness take root. And yes, there is romance too! The author described the time period perfectly to where I could picture myself there among the turmoil. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the Fiction Guild but was not required to write a review.
StephieJ More than 1 year ago
Another excellent read by this author! I really enjoyed this book! I especially enjoyed the main character, Kate! She was such a fun and lively character. The author does a great job at creating likable, relastic characters and weaving the fun, historical details in the book too! *I received a review copy of this book from the publisher! No positive review was required. My opinion is my own and is honest!
SemmieWise More than 1 year ago
** “We cannot control what others do. We can only control how we react to it. Being angry will only hurt you, not them.” ** Sarah E. Ladd’s “The Weaver’s Daughter” is a delightful Regency-era retelling of “Romeo and Juliet” that weaves together romance with just a touch of suspense. Amberdale is an 1812 British town that pits the weavers against the millers in a competitive cloth-making industry … and the two sides never mix. Kate Dearborne is the daughter of the town’s most influential weaver, a man who hates William Stockton, the man who owns Amberdale’s mill and who one day hopes to leave it to his grandson, Henry. When Henry returns to town after fighting for three years on the Iberian Peninsula … and being presumed dead … Amberdale, and Kate’s life, is thrown in a major uproar. As skirmishes between local mills and weavers keep growing in intensity, Kate and Henry keep crossing paths again and again. And as their feelings for one another keep building, they know they must overcome their families’ and towns people’s hatred for each other. Ladd does a lovely job building the relationship between Kate and Henry, allowing for an ebb and flow to their emotions as they struggle between love and familial loyalty. She also gives them very real faults, as to make them relatable to the reader. But she also has written more than just a romance, as “The Weaver’s Daughter” also has a touch of suspense sprinkled throughout — with a death, shootings, planned destructions, and mysterious leaders of the questionable activity. “The Weaver’s Tale” also brings us some great themes in addition to the Shakespearean love story — reminding us of the battle we all face to overcome adversity, especially women; the necessity of finding our true role in life; the importance of how we choose to react to a situation; loyalty; and forgiveness. Four and a half stars out of five. Thomas Nelson provided this complimentary copy for my honest, unbiased review.
Becky6 More than 1 year ago
Sarah E. Ladd just keeps getting better and better with each book she writes. “The Weaver’s Daughter” is probably my favorite of her’s so far. I love how every time I pick up one of Mrs. Ladd’s books, I feel as if I actually enter inside the story. The author takes her readers on a ride of a lifetime by taking us back in time to the early Industrial Revolution where miners and millers are at war with each other. This was such a unique setting and stands out from most of the other Regency novels that I’ve read. The characters also became immediate favorites. I loved spending time with Henry Stockton, Kate Dearborne, and their siblings. My heart broke for each of the character’s for they all were torn between staying loyal to their families and wanting to do what is right. Kate Dearborne is independent and is far from your damsel in distress. She isn’t afraid to speak her mind and has strong morals about what is right. She is a hard worker despite being a woman and she geninuely cares for the people around her. Henry Stockton belongs on my long list of favorite swoonworthy nineteenth century gentleman. Hopefully this is not a spoiler, but I genuinely enjoyed that his character had PTSD and how she handled the topic with care and keeping it realistic. I personally think his character would be a huge encouragment to anyone who has a loved one battling PTSD. I also enjoyed that he is also independent and has a big heart of changing things for the better. He’s also a great and protective big brother to his younger sister. Which brings me to my next favorite character. I adored Mollie’s character. She is the younger sister of Henry Stockton. She is so sweet, genuine, and kind. I’m hoping we’ll see her in a future novel because she deserves a happy ending too. This is a novel about understanding the unconditional love of God, forgiveness and doing the right thing no matter what it will cost you. It’s brilliantly written and will stay close to your heart long after the story is finished. I sure hope there’s another one on the way because I’m not ready to leave these characters yet. Overall, I enjoyed this. Fans of Elizabeth Gaskell’s “North & South” will enjoy this! Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.
LucyMR1 More than 1 year ago
Sarah Ladd never disappoints in her Regency novels that sweep us away to another era. It is never a rushed storyline but builds at a steady tempo that has you waltzing through the pages. The time is 1812 in Yorkshire, England as unrest has developed between the weavers and the progressive mill owners. Add Our heroine, Kate Dearborne and you will be engrossed in a young lady who is torn between her love of family and a budding romance with the supposed enemy. It is a beautiful story of loyalty to what is expected and following where God leads, forgiveness, grace, and love. This is not a fluffy romance, but has depth of character and will leave you in tears. I received a complimentary copy from Thomas Nelson & Zondervan Fiction Guild. The honest review and opinions are my own and were not required.
Deana0326 More than 1 year ago
This is great story that opened my eyes to a trade I knew little about. The author does an exceptional job of giving readers historical facts that make the story come to life. Kate is a wonderful character who has dreams of becoming a part of her father's business. I loved how she tried to convince her father that she should be more involved in the company. Henry is a pleasant enough person but he sure shocks everyone when he returns home after being feared dead. There is definitely friction between Kate and Henry's family. You can feel the tension in the air when they encounter each other. I thought it was funny that Kate and Henry kept running into each other. Is romance in their future? Technology seems to be playing a part in the industry new machines being introduced. Will this cause weaver's to lose their jobs? Can Kate and Henry find a way to work together to save their families businesses? I liked how Henry stood up to his grandfather. His loyalty to his sister is admirable and I wanted the author to spend a bit more time on where she was and why she is being shunned by her grandfather. The story is filled with danger, loyalty, fear, suspense and a romance that makes the story a success. Overall a great book that keeps readers intrigued by the smooth writing of a very gifted author. I can't wait for her next book to come out. I received a copy of this book from The Fiction Guild. The review is my own opinion.
MarB1 More than 1 year ago
It took some time to get into this book. Not that the characters were boring or that I did not like them, but the story was simply slower paced than other of Sarah’s books that I have read. Changes and conflicts are central in this story. It was interesting to see how the author created both story worlds – that of the weavers and that of the mill owners. There is a lot of tension between these two. New machines have been invented and times are changing for the people of Amberdale. Mill owners want to strive forward, but the weaver’s want things to stay the same. The weaver’s daughter, Kate, has a good heart and wants to do what is right. But is what her father and the other weavers believe really the right thing? Or are the mill owners right? The mill owner’s grandson, Henry, has just returned from war and is thrown into the middle of the conflict. Kate captures his eye, but a relationship between the mill owner’s grandson and the weaver’s daughter is impossible, or is it? An enjoyable story and beautiful writing!
bookstoregal More than 1 year ago
Another historical romance by Sarah Ladd! It is set in England, and is about the weaving/cloth making industry. On the positive side, the mystery part of it was good! There was an unexpected twist at the end. Another thing I like is that it did not have your typical characters. One character had just returned from war, one had defected from his father's business to the competition, etc. There was quite a bit of sadness in it, but it did end well! Overall, though, I didn't like it as well as the previous books that I have read by her... Just my own opinion. I felt that there were a few things that didn't really make sense, etc. For example, saying one thing in one place, but then saying something different about the same thing in another later part... I was given this book in exchange for an honest review. Thanks Fiction Guild!
jacksonmomLV More than 1 year ago
I really enjoy historical fiction, and this novel by Sarah Ladd covered an interesting period at the beginning of the industrial revolution in England. I really had no idea the animosity between weavers and mill owners! It's a bit like the need for fewer factory workers as automation relies more on robotics and mechanical efficiency today...fortunately, with less violence. The book started slowly for me, and the prologue especially seemed a bit wordy. But the pace picked up once Henry and Kate met, and their family loyalties were tested. I loved the sparks that flew and the way their expectations were shaken. "How foolish he had been to think that he had left the war behind him and life would be easier once he returned to England's countryside. Not only did he find his neighbors engaged in a war of their own, but the battleground seemed to be the same land he called home." Happily for us readers, Kate and Henry eventually find themselves fighting on the same side when "push comes to shove." Ladd did an excellent job of keeping the characters' voices distinct as they wrestle with their changing identities. She also wove in some interesting supporting characters. Could we hope for a future book featuring fallen sister Mollie or the beautiful yet catty Frederica? Both showed a remarkable change of heart by story's end. Most romance novels are predictable, but this story has a few twists that will keep you engaged, and I found it hard to put down for long. I had planned to buy this book, as Ladd is a favorite author of mine, but was happy to receive a complimentary copy from the publisher via The Fiction Guild. I was not required to post a view, and the opinions stated are strictly my own.
BookReviewerTG More than 1 year ago
I love the cover of this book. This is wonderful stand alone regency-era read is as good on the inside as it looks on the outside. Reading this story made me think of Romeo and Juliet but in Yorkshire, England. Poor Henry he has no idea that as he returns from serving his country that everything he left is going to all be the same. He finds out that his grandfather has become harsher with the local weavers. thus, causing some ill will. Charles Dearborne one of the weavers crosses that line and causes some great ill will. Kate loves her father but she also loves Henry. Kate wants to marry Henry but both Henry's family and Kate's do not want the couple to join. *This book was provided for review by The Fiction Guild*
Jennybug52 More than 1 year ago
4 stars- I have read all of Sarah’s novels and have enjoyed them. Her latest is one of her best. I was intrigued by the main characters Kate Dearborne and Henry Stockton. They were raised as enemies yet God has a funny way of bringing the most unlikeliest of people together. Kate comes from a family of weavers while Henry’s family owns the hated wool mill that threatens to take away Kate’s family’s way of life. She has been taught to hate the Stocktons. But when Henry returns from years at war, Kate sees a different side to him with every chance encounter. Is he really her enemy? I loved the depth of the characters in this story, especially Kate. She is a strong willed woman that is deeply loyal to her family and isn’t afraid to defend them or herself. Yet she is also kind and tender hearted. My heart went out to her as she struggled deeply with how to remain loyal to her father while sorting out her feelings for Henry. I loved how she didn’t back down from a challenge and cower because she was a woman. Henry was also a strong character that had the same strong will as Kate but also had a heart of gold. They were so different in their ideas of tradition and progress yet were so similar in their actions and loyalties to others. The topic of the Industrial Revolution was also fascinating. It’s easy to imagine how devastating the invention of these different machines would be to a family or town and their traditional way of life. Even though the story took place in 1812 it could just have easily been 2012 with modern technology. So many companies struggle to remain relevant in today’s ever changing society. Technology is replacing many humans in a similar way that the wool mill’s machines replaced the weavers. This was a very enjoyable story and I really connected with Kate and Henry. I look forward to Sarah’s next book. I received a copy of this book for free. I was not required to post a positive review and the views and opinions expressed are my own.
Jennybug52 More than 1 year ago
4 stars- I have read all of Sarah’s novels and have enjoyed them. Her latest is one of her best. I was intrigued by the main characters Kate Dearborne and Henry Stockton. They were raised as enemies yet God has a funny way of bringing the most unlikeliest of people together. Kate comes from a family of weavers while Henry’s family owns the hated wool mill that threatens to take away Kate’s family’s way of life. She has been taught to hate the Stocktons. But when Henry returns from years at war, Kate sees a different side to him with every chance encounter. Is he really her enemy? I loved the depth of the characters in this story, especially Kate. She is a strong willed woman that is deeply loyal to her family and isn’t afraid to defend them or herself. Yet she is also kind and tender hearted. My heart went out to her as she struggled deeply with how to remain loyal to her father while sorting out her feelings for Henry. I loved how she didn’t back down from a challenge and cower because she was a woman. Henry was also a strong character that had the same strong will as Kate but also had a heart of gold. They were so different in their ideas of tradition and progress yet were so similar in their actions and loyalties to others. The topic of the Industrial Revolution was also fascinating. It’s easy to imagine how devastating the invention of these different machines would be to a family or town and their traditional way of life. Even though the story took place in 1812 it could just have easily been 2012 with modern technology. So many companies struggle to remain relevant in today’s ever changing society. Technology is replacing many humans in a similar way that the wool mill’s machines replaced the weavers. This was a very enjoyable story and I really connected with Kate and Henry. I look forward to Sarah’s next book. I received a copy of this book for free. I was not required to post a positive review and the views and opinions expressed are my own.
pianosue More than 1 year ago
Kate Dearborne is caught in a battle between the weaver's and the miller's. But she has been loyal to the weaver's all her life as her dad is a weaver. Then she meets the grandson of the mill owner. She then battles her confusion over the discrepancies between their words and their actions. The employees are suffering and well as the families of the weaver's. How can she help? What can she do? Will she find where she fits in? Will she discover a new way of life? Will they survive the coming battle? A complex story of love and hate.
ARS8 More than 1 year ago
The Weaver’s Daughter takes us to the time when progress was threatening the common people’s way of life and their livelihood. This particular conflict takes place between the weavers and the cotton mill and it was a fierce one. Families were torn apart which trickled into everyday life in the lives of the townspeople. This is where Kate finds herself. Her brother seeing the future in the machines goes against their very stubborn father, a weaver, and begins working for the mill. Kate’s father sees her as just a ‘woman’ and intends to marry the man he has chosen to replace her brother. Henry, the grandson of the mill owner, has come back home after fighting a war and surprises everyone in the town who all thought he was dead. He is not quite the same man who left, and he finds that he sees his future looking very different than what others have always wanted for him. The atmosphere is dark, brooding, and very tension filled. Everyone has let animosity and bitterness take over and danger lurks just around the corner in a town that should be friendly. There is a romance that begins to blossom slowly, very fragile and at many times almost snuffed out. There is a mystery I was not expecting at all. This was a very moral tale of how man’s pride can be his downfall. Hopefully we will get some more of these characters stories. I received a complimentary copy of this novel. I was not required to post a positive review and all views and opinions are my own.
Faerytalemegan More than 1 year ago
"The Weaver's Daughter" by Sarah Ladd is a Regency story full of feuding families and forbidden love. It has a Romeo and Juliet feel to it that readers will love! Lovers of historical fiction and the Regency will find a lot to appreciate in this new novel by Ms. Ladd. Ms. Ladd excels in her attention to historical detail and her descriptions of the time period and setting. She gives great depictions of the village and English country side. This is not the normal Regency of high society, drawing rooms and balls. Rather it brings the reader to the everyday lives of the working class. I learned a lot about mills and the weavers of the time period while reading. The pace is a little slower with some lengthier descriptions of the mills that some readers may find to be more tedious. I still highly enjoyed the book and it’s nice to have a change of pace once in a while. Ms. Ladd also writes her characters in a relatable way. The two main characters are flawed, yet loveable. Kate, our heroine, wants to help her father with his business, but he chooses others to help instead of her. He thinks she should tend to things in the cottage and dye house and be more of a lady. She has spent her life around the business. Her father thinks she needs to marry another weaver and marry for security. It’s all about loyalty and staying in the family business. Yet Kate is strong willed and not afraid to stand up for herself. Henry, the hero, is a man who has been to war and is trying to reconcile the horrors he experienced in war to everyday life in his village. He also realizes he’s now entered a new war zone; one between the millers and weavers. I like that Henry realizes that the things he thought mattered before the war–a beautiful wife, possessions and power–don’t really matter. Now he wants safety, security, happiness, justice, hope and forgiveness. He is such a kind man. He and Kate are caught in the middle of their families’ battles. Can these star crossed lovers be together? Will they forgo loyalty to their family for love? You will just have to read to find out! Content: This is a clean read with a PG rating for some mild content. Some examples of the content are: men drink ale; talk of brandy and smoking a pipe; talk that a woman has disgraced herself by getting pregnant out of wedlock; a man uses snuff; it is said that a man curses, but the words are not actually written; a man seems to have PTSD from war. Rating: I give this book 4 stars. Genre: Christian fiction; Historical fiction; Romance; Regency I want to thank Sarah Ladd, Thomas Nelson and the Fiction Guild for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.
steelergirl83 More than 1 year ago
I love historical romances. Give me a castle, a duke, or a princess and I'm usually a happy camper. However, I think there's a point in time when we all get burnt out on even our favorite genres. Regency romances are my all-time favorites buuuuut, I'm over the ballroom scene for the moment. I was over the moon to discover that Sarah E. Ladd's latest novel is the first in a new regency romance series SET IN A MILL TOWN. Hallelujah! Hooray for broadcloth. Three cheers for a fabulous novel that reminds me of Elisabeth Gaskell's North and South and the British TV series, The Mill. While it wasn't quite as gritty as The Mill, Ladd addresses child labor and what progress meant for mill owners and their employees. Did I mention there's forbidden romance, too? Ummm...yes, please! There are about a million loose threads (no pun intended) in this book, so I'm really hoping there's at least a second book this year. I am very curious to see how Mollie Stockton and even the vapid Frederica Pennington fare as past scandals see the light of day in their small village. Overall, I was really pleased with this regency and wish I could read more like it! I love me a story with an HEA that doesn't involve the fabulously wealthy set. ~ My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars ~ *I receive complimentary books from publishers, publicists, and/or authors. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.*