16 January 2014

The Governess of Highland Hall by Carrie Turansky

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Worlds lie between the marketplaces of India and the halls of a magnificent country estate like Highland Hall. Will Julia be able to find her place when a governess is neither upstairs family nor downstairs help? 
Missionary Julia Foster loves working alongside her parents, ministering and caring for young girls in India. But when the family must return to England due to illness, she readily accepts the burden for her parents’ financial support. Taking on a job at Highland Hall as governess, she quickly finds that teaching her four privileged, ill-mannered charges at a grand estate is more challenging than expected, and she isn’t sure what to make of the estate’s preoccupied master, Sir William Ramsey. 
Widowed and left to care for his two young children and his deceased cousin Randolph’s two teenage girls, William is consumed with saving the estate from the financial ruin. The last thing he needs is any distraction coming from the kindhearted-yet-determined governess who seems to be quietly transforming his household with her persuasive personality, vibrant prayer life, and strong faith. 
While both are tending past wounds and guarding fragile secrets, Julia and William are determined to do what it takes to save their families – common ground that proves fertile for unexpected feelings. But will William choose Julia’s steadfast heart and faith over the wealth and power he needs to secure Highland Hall’s future?

As an avid watcher of Downton Abbey, I jumped at the opportunity to explore Carrie Turansky’s depiction of early-twentieth century England in The Governess of Highland Hall. While I definitely found the storyline predictable and it easily wrapped neat and tidy, I thoroughly enjoyed the novel nonetheless. It was fun to see different interactions between the characters, upstairs and downstairs, and I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in the time period of Downton Abbey or just romantic historical fiction. As usual, I received a copy of this novel from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group and I greatly appreciate the opportunity from them to read and honestly review it.

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